Turning the Wheel of Dharma
Thai National Holiday
Tuesday 19th July 9:30am-12:00
@ Rojana Center, Asoke
ASALHA PUJA day commemorates the Buddha’s first sermon when he taught the Four Noble Truths, which remains the most important teaching in Buddhism – something all Expats in Thailand should know the basics of!
In Thailand it is a national holiday. And it is one of the four big special occasions in the Buddhist calendar.
All Thai people travel to their favourite temples for the requisite circumambulation of the main hall, and dhamma talks on the ‘Dhammacakka Sutta‘ in which this first teaching is preserved. During the day in all temples the monk’s will recite the entire sutta from memory.
There is no charge for this event, and no need to book in advance
- 9:30am meet at the Rojana Center
- 10:00 Puja (religious offerings)
- 10:15am Dhamma Talk with Pandit Bhikkhu on the Dhammacakka Sutta
- 10:45 Recitation of the Dhammacakka Sutta
- 11:00 almsround (put rice in the monk’s almsbowls)
- 11:30 Blessing and ‘Victory Chant’
After the Buddha had attained enlightenment he went in search of his five former friends who were still pursuing ascetic practises. He told them he had finally found the Enlightenment they had been seeking. At first they were not confident, but since he’d never claimed this before, they listened. Then the Buddha gave the Dhammacakka Sutta, or Turning the Wheel of Dhamma, where he outlined the ‘Middle Way’ between asceticism and luxury, and the Four Noble Truths about suffering.
This remains the key teaching of all Buddhist Schools.
Pandit Bhikkhu is an English Buddhist Monk living in Bangkok, organising activities relating to Buddhism and Thai culture here in Bangkok, through the Little Bangkok Sangha, and teaching in the Buddhist University Mahaculalnogkorn Vidhayalaya, in Ayutthaya.
The Dhammacakka Sutta is the key teaching of Buddhism, and is something that should be familiar to all people interested in Buddhism and mindfulness practise. In fact there are 50+ versions of the sutta, although they all agree on the core message – quite a remarkable fact after 2500 years!
The sutta contains the classic teaching on the Middle Way, and of the Four Noble Truths, that is the foundation of all Buddhist Schools.
Please follow the map. It is VERY precise. It is easy to find: there are only one or two turns depending on which direction you are coming from. It is an 11 minute walk from Asoke BTS and even closer to Sukhumvit MRT
Go down Sukhumvit 23 to the first four way intersection. Turn right, and then turn right again at the end of the road.
Or just ask the motorcycles inside Sukhumvit 23 – they know the way.
A few tips:
- Don’t ask locals or taxi drivers the way – they will not know the Rojana Centre, and will send you somewhere else instead. They will all know Sukhumvit 23, so go there and find your own way.
- Follow the map – plenty of landmarks are shown and it it extremely precise!
- In Thai the centre is known as Rojanatam
- Quite a few other foreigners will be heading there at the same time.
Here are the GPS coordinates if you prefer : 13.739356, 100.564748