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Temple Roof

In a Thai temple, the "BOT" (โบสถ์) is the finest building where monks are assembled for religious rites (สังฆกรรม) such as morning and evening prayers, ordination. It is the most sacred part of the temple. The "BOT" is also called ceremonial hall.

Temple Roof ceremony
For the installation of a "CHO FA" on a temple roof, there is a specific Buddhist ceremony. This ceremony is called "YOK CHO FA" (พิธียกช่อฟ้า). On that day, Thai people come to the temple to make money donations. Some families bring a money tree.
Temple Roof ceremony

Roof of "BOT" (โบสถ์) is often made of red tiles. The number of stack of roofs are always odd ( 3, 5, 7, 9 ). Odd number are supposed to be lucky. "CHO FA" (ช่อฟ้า) is the elongated and elaborately carved apex on the gable of a Buddhist temple. It is believed to represent the mythical Garuda.

People add colorful ribbons around the "CHO FA" and make a Thai greeting ("WAI" - ไหว้). They bless the carved apex by sprinkling lustral water (NAM MON - น้ำมนต์) on it.
Temple Roof ceremony
Temple Roof ceremony

Raising the "CHO FA" or "CHORFAH" is the last merit making event in the process of building the ceremonial hall.

Temple Roof ceremony
Then Thai people gather in the temple around the monks in order to listen to the Dharma.
Temple Roof ceremony

The "CHO FA" can be seen as a simplified form of a Garuda or a Naga.

Once the Buddhist sermon is over and the temple abbot has hit the gong, the "CHO FA" is brought from the ground to the sky thanks to a pulley mechanism.
Temple Roof ceremony
Temple Roof ceremony

The "UBASOK" (อุบาสก) are men of faith / laymen and "UBASIKA" (อุบาสิกา) are women of faith / laywomen.

Temple Roof ceremony
Once it reaches the roof, the "CHO FA" is fixed to the gable of the temple. The colorful and sacred ribbons are removed and thrown away. Thai people try to get the falling sacred ribbons.
Temple Roof ceremony

It is the funniest (สนุก - "SANUK") part of the ceremony when children and adults play in order to get the biggest number of ribbons.

It is still a long way before this Buddhist temple has a complete consecration. Many Buddhist ceremonies will happen.
Temple Roof ceremony
Temple Roof ceremony
Temple Roof ceremony
Another "CHO FA" (ช่อฟ้า) waiting for a ceremony to be installed on a temple roof.
Temple Roof ceremony



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