Discovery >

Respect for Ancestors Runs Deep in Cambodian Culture

April 3, 2014 by Khiri Travel | Filed Under: ,

PCHUM BEN

In Cambodia, Pchum Ben or Ancestors Day, is a 15-day religious festival, which culminates in a celebration on the 15th day of the tenth month in the Khmer calendar, roughly mid September on the modern calendar. The day is a time for Cambodians to pay their respects to deceased relatives from the past seven generations. That’s a lot of relatives! Monks will chant Buddhist scriptures in Pali, often overnight and continuously without sleeping in a prelude to the gates of hell opening. The ritual originates from the Pali canon, the liturgical language of Theravada Buddhism. Offerings in temple entrances as well as at shrines in the family home are made to the ancestors and monks to generate merit that indirectly benefits the dead.

In many temples, however, this is either accompanied by or superseded by food offerings that are imagined to directly transfer from the living to the dead, such as rice-balls thrown through the air, or rice thrown into an empty field. It stems from the idea of feeding the ghosts with physical food.

Pchum Ben is considered unique to Cambodia; however, there are comparable merit-transference ceremonies in other countries like Sri Lanka and Laos.

For more information on the festival and travel arrangements for your clients, please visit [email protected].

Latest post

Community-Based Tourism Enables Sri Lankan Culinary Experience

A wonderful and caring Sri Lankan couple serves travelers a picnic lunch of Sri Lankan home cooking in the heart of Sri Lanka’s first ancient capital.

Read More

A Balanced Way to Start Your Hanoi Day

Good morning Vietnam! Let’s rise and shine and discover the best of the city before breakfast. At 6am Khiri Travel Vietnam will pick you up at your hotel, and with a guide

Read More

Experiencing Vietnamese Cuisine Like a Local

To get a truly rounded impression of a destination, the best way to start is by sampling the local cuisine.

Read More

Nang Sangkharn – Laos’ three day new year celebrations

Find out all about the traditional Lao beauty pageants and what they represent.

Read More

Subscribe to our newsletter

Our B2B newsletters are for industry professionals




    *We’ll never share your email address and you can opt out at any time.