The City of Witchcraft and Wizardry

After all these years, you might have been wondering if there is still a magical place on earth like in the movie Harry Potter or the Lord of the Rings.

Look no further. Bangkok is the place.

Thai people have firm beliefs about supernatural powers. They never doubt ghosts exist, not to mention angels and demons. They live with Karma concepts and are looking forward to rebirths.

Bangkokians are no exception. They are just good at how adapting the entire conceptions to fit their urban lifestyles.

You might encounter a Bangkok tycoon who graduated from Harvard presenting his multi-million company’s real estate projects very professionally. The powerpoint slides looks neat. A lot of marketing research and statistical studies are being quoted to back up his points. His slides about financial analysis of the projects is academically correct.

But do not assume that he has a firm beliefs in his rationalizations. Chances are, at home, he is consulting fortune tellers for the project feasibility. The  real estate has probably been designed according to Feng Shui. The project was probably scheduled based on astrology.

There are quite a number of celebrities in Thailand who claim they used to work at NASA. They called themselves great scientist, but they still think that the Thai supernatural powers are far superior than science. Some of them believe in the power of the Pyramid. Another believes in psychic powers attained from meditation. Some even hold a strong belief that the most parts of the earth will be under water soon so he has moved to the mountain for good. Formal educations can never alter their faiths.

Since ancient times, the Thai society was the society of strong social stratification. People in lower class were assigned to the masters of higher class to serve as labor or slavery. There was no such thing as social mobility. They never have control over their lives. As such it’s not hard to understand why they tend to view major incidents in life as the impacts of external forces such as luck or Karma. Although Thailand is now a modernized country, these ways of thinking are still imprinted in Thai people’s DNAs. For every major event in their lives e.g. university admissions, job seeking, career promotions, starting up a business, marriage, having a child, etc., they put a lot of efforts on bribing the supernatural beings ghosts, angels or even the Buddha himself to help them succeed.

(photo from ibtimes.co.uk)

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