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Thai Buddhist altar tips

Hi can anyone please give some advice on setting up a Thai style Buddhist shrine at home or if they know any websites that explains it thank


  • federicafederica Seeker of the clear blue sky... Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator

    May I respectfully ask why this obsession with shrines/altars and particularly Thai? Buddhism isn't Thai. Buddhism is a broad practice which embraces all and none.

    My opinion - and sincerely, I mean this with the greatest of respect - is to focus less on what it looks like, and more at what it represents to you. Imagery is all very well, but the focus should be on you. What kind of a 'shrine' are YOU to the Buddhism you practise....?

  • May I respectfully say that I'm
    Interested to arrange my altar like Thai as its my personal feeling my current shrine is a mix of all traditions but I'm
    Looking just to keep
    To one which is Thai !

  • karastikarasti Breathing Minnesota Moderator

    I've found that things like shrines are very personal and you should do what inspires practice and devotion. What about Thai Buddhism appeals to you? Start with that question and then determine what you want to use on your shrine. Do some research online, look at image searches on google, etc. See what speaks to you, and use it. It won't do any good to duplicate someone else's shrine that inspires them. Find what inspires you.

    I am a Tibetan practitioner but Tibetan shrines are too involved for me. I don't want all sorts of bowls of water and such. I don't have the space and our dog, kids and ferrets would dump them in a heartbeat. I have a Buddha, a meditating lady statue, my malas, a picture of me and my "real" sangha and our teacher when we took our vows, the printout of the vows I took that day and a picture of my grandpa picking berries (because it's a very meditational activity that we both enjoyed and every time I see the picture I think of my practice. it also reminds me where I come from and I feel connected to my loved ones when I am practicing). And a special handcarved wood box that I keep some of my practice-related things in. When I feel moved to do so, I add a flower, or a candle, or incense, or whatever. I love it, and it works for me. It looks nothing like a Tibetan shrine. But it doesn't matter.

  • karastikarasti Breathing Minnesota Moderator

    I love your bench/table/altar @DhammaDragon! My son has a lovely Ganesha statuette that he got as a white elephant holiday party gift but he won't part with it so I can have it, :anguished:

  • BuddhadragonBuddhadragon Ehipassiko & Carpe Diem Samsara Veteran

    Ganesha seems to be a very endearing figure with kids.
    My boy loves him too.
    Though a Buddhist, I have always felt a special affinity with what he represents.
    The picture is more or less visible, and a wood carving I also have on display is hidden behind one of the singing bowls...

  • @Dalia2016 said:
    Hi can anyone please give some advice on setting up a Thai style Buddhist shrine at home or if they know any websites that explains it thank

    As you are in London, the Thai monks here can advise you

  • shep83shep83 wisbech, cambigshire, uk Explorer

    In my humble opinion simple is always better, but that's just me..

  • @Dalia2016, the word altar apparently relates to the sacrifice of animals. Maybe use shrine.

    As for what to put, it seems that the Thais place Fanta on the shrine.

    That said, from what I gather, it doesn't seem to matter because it's how your mind connects to the space. One person gained enlightenment through a dog's tooth.

  • These two types are the most commonly used. I prefer the wall mount because I just have 1 small Buddha statue that sits on top perfectly, and the rest are amulet sized. I have heard that it brings more good vibes, and feng shui to keep the objects of prayer at a certain height, just so that it does not sit so low, that it collects worldly vibrations often. The higher the better.

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