Rock formation in Mekong said to be where Buddha met Naga serpents

Now that the water level in the Mekong has dropped to just one metre deep, a rock formation can now be seen above water, and locals believe the rock has Buddha’s footprints. A Thai legend says Naga serpents invited Buddha to preach in their underwater palaces. The serpents then asked Buddha to leave his footprints at the mouth of the river. Locals and tourists alike are now visiting the site in Nakhon Phanom province.

The province is also planning activities to attract more visitors to the rock from now until Songkaran, the annual Thai water festival. The legend of the Naga is important in Thailand, especially to people in the Northeast, and is associated with water. Northeastern Thai legends say a water angel ordered Nagas to play in a lake, and the water they splashed fell down to earth as rain. To this day, many Thais still pray to and thank Nagas for rain.

Every year, Northeastern Thais shoot home-made rockets into the air to wake up the Nagas, hoping they will splash water down to earth on their crops.

Hopefully, the Nagas can help with the Mekong’s falling water level. Reports say this problem is caused by outflow restrictions from Chinese dams, and below-average rainfall this year.

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SOURCE: Bangkok Post

Northern Thailand News

Tara Abhasakun

A Thai-American dual citizen, Tara has reported news and spoken on a number of human rights and cultural news issues in Thailand. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in history from The College of Wooster. She interned at Southeast Asia Globe, and has written for a number of outlets. Tara reports on a range of Thailand news issues.

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