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Blessing cars or motorcycles is one popular Buddhist
ceremony in Thailand. Thai people expect it brings luck
and avoid having any accident.
The Suan Mokh School of
Buddhadasa Bhikkhu ("PHUTTHATHAT" in Thai language)
stresses rationalism in core Buddhist teachings as opposed to animist believes often
found in popular Buddhism. For example blessing cars, motorcycles, trees, washing machines
and even Thai Airways planes blessed by the Suprem Patriarch. Actually
monks do what lay people expect from them. Buddhadasa Bikkhu thinks this
is not the right way, monks are here to teach Dharma to lay people.
Even if animism gives a colourful Buddhism, animism beliefs should not
force monks to do things that are incompatible with Buddhism.
When a new car is bought, the owner invites a monk to bless it.
The monk says blessings, throws holy water on the car and also
draws some mysterious signs above the driver's seat.
Once a year, around Chinese New year, Thai people from Central Plains may
bless their car ("WAI ROT" - ไหว้รถ). It shall
allow them to stay safe while driving and to avoid accidents.