Buddhist Thais are expected to spend nearly six percent more on the merit-making activities during Magha Puja Day, according to a recent survey by the University of the Thai Chamber of Commerce.
Around THB2.6 billion would be circulated during Magha Buja Day this year, which is 5.6 percent up from the THB 2.5 billion spent last year. On average, one Buddhist is likely to spend THB1,000 on religious purposes. The spending increase results from the price hike.
The poll has also found that Thai people are less interested in going to temples. Fifty-six percent of the respondents go to the temple no more than three times a month. Thirty-five percent go to the temple no more than five times a year.
Nearly 60 percent pay less importance to major religious days, whereas 36 percent view major religious days as important as ever. Only two percent pay more attention to major religious events while three percent pay no attention at all.
Sixty-eight percent of the respondents can explain the importance of Magha Puja Day. The rest either give a wrong answer or have no idea about this festival.
Fifty-two percent define religion as something they can cling to spiritually, 23 percent view religion as a form of tradition or rite, and 22 percent view religion as the guideline of life.
Source: National News Bureau