Shrine on a Bangkok street

Bangkok, Thailand

Every time I walk on the streets of Bangkok, I see a lot of temples, statues of Buddhism deities, monks in yellow color clad. I am overwhelmed with numbers of people who are praying in front of these temples. Maybe visiting a temple is a daily practice for many of them. For many of Japanese, the Buddhist temples are where we visit for special occasions like funerals or new year day. I realized Buddhism is an important part of their daily life. The population of the Buddhist in Thailand accounts for 94.6%, followed by Muslim of 4.3% and Christian of 1% according to U.S. Government information. For your information, Japan has 66.7% of Buddhist and 69% of Shinto believers. Many believe more than two religions.

There are some 30,000 temples in Thailand. In Bangkok alone, they have about 400 temples. There are small temples in the middle of busy downtown areas and people come to pray taking flowers and incenses. Even around 9 o’clock in the night of weekdays, people come constantly. Many of them may visit after their long hours of work and return home. It may be a natural thing for them to do. I heard Thai people believe they can live longer and be given better afterlife if they follow the teachings of Buddha.