Thousands To Attend Vientiane City Pillar Shrine Consecration

Some 2,500 to 3,000 people from across the country are expected to attend the official consecration ceremony of the Vientiane City Pillar Shrine this November 15 to 17.
“The idea behind consecration is to make something sacred and respected. During the ceremony, monks will pray day and night, concentrating on the spirit and teachings of the Buddha, dharma, and the respect of monks and lay-people for this special place.”
The activities will include religious ceremonies and traditional celebrations. Items of value will be placed on …..

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Boun Ork Phansa, The Time For Buddhist Festivities

Boun Ork Phansa is the last day of Buddhist Lent. Taking place three lunar months after Khao Phansa, the day is one steeped in tradition and brought alive by celebrations which begin at dawn and continue on way past dusk.
As morning breaks, people across the country flock to temples to present offerings of money and food to resident monks. The morning offering ceremony is quiet and reflective – the calm before the storm of festivities to come.
On the evening of Boun Ork Phansa, candlelight processions are held around temples in celebration of Lay Heua Fai. The river becomes illuminated as people send small boats made of banana leaves, decorated with flowers and carrying candles down the Mekong. The boats serve as a mark of respect to Buddha and to thank ……

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Vat SiMeuang: The Liveliest Temple In Vientiane

“Mother, please help my son to pass the entrance exam and study in a good school. If he succeeds, I promise to give you two bunches of bananas, two coconuts, a wax castle and five pairs of lighted candles and flowers.”
This is a typical example of the prayers offered up at Vat Simeuang temple in Vientiane every day – a prayer to Nha Mae Simeuang, believed to be the city’s protector. People come here to make their heart’s desires known, and will return with offerings if their prayers are answered. Usually they bring coconuts, candles or money, all of which are laid in abundance at the main altar.
The temple was built in 1563 and houses the much venerated city pillar. Legend has it that the king at that time asked that a hole be dug to install the pillar and it must be large enough for …..

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Death Penalty Is Necessary, But Should Be Humane: NA

The death penalty is necessary for brutal crimes, but the punishment should be implemented fairly and humanely, National Assembly (NA) members have said.
This was the consensus among NA members when they met on Tuesday to debate the amendment of the Law on Criminal Procedure. “The use of the death penalty is unavoidable, but in some cases it should not be done by firing squad,” NA member for Vientiane Prof. Dr Kikeo Khaykhamphithoun said.
“If the international community is interested in why Laos is serious on this matter, we can tell the world that it’s because of our determination to fight crimes like drug trafficking,” Dr Duangsavat said.

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ULUVUS’ New Album Sure To Be A Laugh

ULUVUS, an expatriate rock band, will unveil their new album entitled “55555”, a play on the Lao sense of humour that shows the band are well in tune with Lao culture.
ULUVUS released their first album in 2009, after the band members had been living in Laos for some time, and have been immersing themselves further in the culture ever since.
“55555” is a post that Lao youngsters like to make on Facebook or send as a text message. Vocalised as “ha, ha, ha” this means something is considered to be funny and the new Lao language album is meant to be exactly that, fun for foreigners and Lao people alike.

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Lao Sticky Rice Wine With A Potent Bite

Forget eating the worm after downing your tequila – with these bottles of unusual wine produced in Laos, a tasty tipple comes with a far more potent bite. This potion, known as lao bong ya, is believed to ward off evil spirits and cure the sick.
Because snake venoms are protein-based, they are inactivated by the denaturing effects of ethanol, and thus are no more dangerous, meaning you’ll avoid a pounding hangover.

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Wat Si Muang – Vientiane’s Corner Stone

Wat Si Muang is not as well known as Wat Phra Kaew or Wat Sisaket but Wat Si Muang nevertheless has a special attraction.

Founded in 1563 under the reign of King Setthathirath it was destroyed by the Siamese in 1828, like most other temples in Vientiane, rebuilt in 1915 and renovated in 1960. Wat Si Muang is currently in good condition and well maintained. The temple is situated at the junction of Samsenthai and Setthathirath road. A statue of King Sisavangvong is in a nearby park just next to the main entrance.

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