The Royal Cremation of His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej
A nation bereft and in mourning bids final farewell next week
Marking the first anniversary since the passing of our beloved monarch, this is an important month for the kingdom as the royal cremation of His Majesty the late King Bhumibol Adulyadej takes place between October 25 and 29, a period during which the people of Thailand will come together to pay a last tribute. Here is a brief roundup of what to expect and be informed of in the upcoming days:
A royal merit-making ceremony will be held at the Dusit Maha Prasat Throne Hall located at the Grand Palace complex at 5:30pm.
The royal cremation ceremony will take place Thursday, October 26, which has been declared a public holiday to allow the nation to take part in paying a final tribute to His Majesty the late king. On this day the royal urn will be moved from Dusit Maha Prasat Throne Hall to the Royal Crematorium at Sanam Luang at 7am. The ceremony will take place later in the day at 5:30pm and the actual cremation at 10pm. As a tribute and to officially conclude the mourning period, performances such as khon masked dramas, puppet shows, orchestras and more are also expected on this day starting from 6pm.
The royal relics will be collected at 8am at the Royal Crematorium.
At 5:30pm, a royal merit-making ceremony for the royal relics will take place at Dusit Maha Prasat Throne Hall.
The royal relics will be moved from Dusit Maha Prasat Throne Hall to the Chakri Maha Prasat Throne Hall at 10:30am. This will be followed by the enshrining of the royal ashes in two different temples, Wat Ratchabophit and Wat Bovoranives.
In recent months, thousands upon thousands of people throughout the country have taken part in creating beautifully handmade sandalwood flowers for the somber occasion. The sandlewood flower not only epitomises the virtues of the late king, its fragrance is also believed to lead the souls of the departed to heaven. These traditional funerary flowers are being collected from Thais living overseas and at various locations set up by the Metropolitan Administration in Bangkok and will be burned as an act of love and final farewell during the cremation rights.
Transportation During The Royal Cremation Period
To manage traffic in the days leading up to and during the Royal Cremation, public transportation to the Royal Crematorium will be increased, including flights to Bangkok. On October 26, the MRT, BTS, Airport Rail link, buses and UBER services will be free of charge.
An Exhibition On The History Of The Royal Cremation Ceremony
From November 1-30, an exhibition will be on view at Sanam Luang, which will give people the chance to learn more about the Royal Cremation Ceremony, particularly its background history, art and culture and its related structures.
As he ascended to the throne His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej made an oath to reign with righteousness, for the benefit and happiness of the Siamese people. This is a commitment His Majesty never departed from. This is a time of great sorrow for us all and while this month concludes the year-long mourning period, may we forever learn from the precious teachings of His Majesty the late king and the exemplary manner in which this revered monarch, the rock of our nation, chose to live his life for the good of the kingdom.