What's Happening at Wat Tampa
Click here to learn more about the Buddha Learning Group. The discussion group meets every Sunday in the main Temple between 11:30am and 12:45pm
Click here to learn more about Coming Events. See a list of upcoming holidays and festivals.
The Sunday Market is held every Sunday, come rain or shine, from about 9:30am until 1:00pm. Come join us for great food and a great view.
On Saturday, April 26, 2014 we will hold a meditation workshop. Click here to see complete details.
Makha Puja Day falls on the full moon day of the third lunar month. The date of all of the Thai festivals is based on the lunar calendar so the "American" dates vary from year to year. We will be celebrating Magha Puja Day at Wat Tampa on Sunday, February 16, 2014.
This ceremony marks two important dates in the life of Buddha. The first event occurred two years after Buddha’s enlightenment and is referred to as the Fourfold assembly. These events were:
- All 1,250 monks had achieved enlightenment.
- These monks were ordained by Buddha himself
- The monks assembled on their own without being called together.
On Sunday, April 13, 2014 we celebrate the Songkarn Festival. You may know it by one of its "nicknames" – Thai New Year or the Water Festival.
It is a Thai tradition to give Alms offering to Monks. And in turn, you offer this good deed to relatives who passed away by wishing for them by pouring a small glass of water on a big tree and it is a very good deed and good luck for the beginning of a New Year. This year, as in earlier years there will be a ceremony of sprinkling the Buddha statues and Monks with flower pedals & perfumed water., and, of course, the congregation will also sprinkle perfumed water on each other for good luck and good health and a prosperous New Year. There will be Thai Vegetable and Thai food available.
Visakha Puja Day is an important day in Buddhism. We will celebrate Visakha Puja Day at Wat Tampa on Sunday, May 11, 2014.
Visakha Puja Day marks the Buddhism Trinity or three important incidents occurred in the life of Lord Buddha on the same day. They happened on the same day on full moon of the sixth lunar month.
Asalha Puja Day is one of the most sacred days in Buddhism. It is observed on the fifteenth day of the waxing moon of the eight lunar month (July). This year it is celebrated at Wat Tampa on Sunday, July 13, 2014.
Asalha Puja Day is the anniversary of the day on which Lord Buddha delivered his first Sermon to his five Disciples at the Deer Park in Benares, over two thousand five hundred years ago. The day also marks the beginning of the worship of the Triple Gems, namely: the Lord Buddha, His Teachings and His Disciples.
This year Thai Mothers Day will be celebrated on Sunday, August 10, 2014. Her Majesty, Queen Sirikit of Thailand was born on August 12th, 1932. Thai Mothers Day is a celebration of the Queen's birthday as well as to honor mothers everywhere. The Queen is the symbolic mother of Thailand and is honored as the "First Mother". For almost sixty years, the Queen has stood by the King and the Thai nation dedicating her time and efforts to the common good. For all of her endless devotion the people of Thailand are grateful.
Sart Thai day will be celebrated at Wat Tampa on Sunday, September 7, 2014 this year. Sart Thai day falls in the middle of the traditional Thai year. It occurs on the fifteenth day of the waning moon of the tenth lunar month (sometime during September).
The word Sart, derived from the Pali language, means season and in particular autumn or fall. Sart Thai day is also referred to as Memorial Day. This is not Memorial Day as Americans might assume. In Thailand, Sart Thai is a time to remember dead relatives with prayers, Buddhist rituals, and merit making on their behalf.
This ceremony marks the end of Buddhist lent and is being celebrated at Wat Tampa on Sunday, October 12, 2014. This year the celebration will also include the Kathina Ceremony.
The first day of Thai Lent is referred to as Asalha Puja Day (or Commencement Day). This holiday will be celebrated at Wat Tampa on July 25 this year. The date of all of the Thai festivals is based on the lunar calendar so the "American" dates vary from year to year. You may also here Lent referred to as the "rains retreat."
This year we will celebrate the Loy Krathong Festival on Saturday, November 8, 2014 from 7pm until midnight. This is one of the most beautiful and popular festivals in Thailand. Loy Krathong is celebrated on the day of the full moon in November. Part of the reason for its popularity is the weather, which is quite pleasant. The temperature is mild, the monsoon rains have subsided, and there is plentiful water in the klongs (canals).
The central event in Loy Krathong is the launching of krathongs. A krathong is a small lotus-shaped vessel made of banana leaves, flowers, candles, and three incense sticks. Don't be confused by this simple description. Many krathongs are elaborate vessels that take many hours to construct. People launch the krathongs into any "large" body of water to carry away their bad luck. Prior to launching they light the candle and incense and make a wish. It is considered good luck if the krathong floats away from you.
His Majesty, King Bhumibol, Rama IX of Thailand was born in Cambridge, Massachusetts on December 5, 1927. This year will will celebrate the Kings birthday on Sunday, December 7, 2014. This celebration is also referred to as Thai Father's day since the King is the symbolic father of Thailand. The King and Queen are revered for they generosity and caring for the Thai people. There are numerous royal projects aimed at improving the life and health of the Thai people. A list of their accomplishments is long and impressive.
The King's father, Prince Mahidol, was studying medicine at Harvard University at the time of the King's birth. The King's grandfather was King Chulalongkorn (Rama V), one of the most famous kings of the Royal House of Chakri. Prince Bhumibol's father died at an early age and his mother moved to Switzerland where the young prince lead as "ordinary" life as possible. Prince Bhumibol's interests during this time were photography, tinkering with electrical & mechanical things, and science. While in Switzerland he entered Lausanne University. While in Switzerland he met and fell in love with a charming young Thai lady. They were married just prior to the King's coronation in 1950. It is worth noting that Thailand has had a constitutional monarchy since 1937. King Bhumibol is the longest reigning king is the world.
Two personal observations attest to love the Thai people hold for King Bhumibol and Queen Sirikit.
Perhaps the most visible sign of the love and respect for the King and Queen is that every house and every store have one (or sometimes many more) pictures of the royal couple. This was as true 25 years ago when I first visited Thailand as it was last year when I traveled to Thailand.
The second observation has likewise been formed over many years. Thailand is a constitutional monarchy. In theoretical terms the king has limited powers in the day-to-day governing of Thailand. He does, however, have vast moral authority. His advice and counsel is sought on many of the important decisions of the Thai government. In a recent article on the King stated the King has only three rights: The Right to Encourage, the Right to be Consulted. and the Right to Warn. These rights are only effective because His Majesty is so revered by the people of Thailand.
Welcome to Wat Mongkolratanaram (also know as Wat Tampa). Happy New Year!
Let me start today by quoting to you a traditional Thai New Years wish: "By the power of the Buddhist Triple Gems: Buddha, Dharma, and Sangha - May you and your family be blessed with good health, beautiful, prosperous, long life, and be successful in your career and in life for the New Year. May all of these blessings and all your wishes be fulfilled."