Rice is the staple food that related to lifestyle of Thai people since ancient times. Rice growing have earned through the wisdom that has been linked to the belief that there is mother goddess living in rice which is Siamese rice goddess (Mae Pho Sop). This belief has led to the customs and rituals associated with farming and way of life of farmers which is based on faith and respect for nature. If the rice is treated with great care, Richness would come to family and community. Therefore, agriculture not only plant the seed, but also keeping on traditions and beliefs from the past until present.
Since agriculture is a profession of Thai society, people is feed by rice. There are many rituals related to rice in Thailand but with the same aim that is to fertility and to worship holy thing that protects all crop. Therefore, all rituals reflect the faith and wisdom of local people in an attempt to communicate with the supernatural.
The rituals related to rice would connect to Mae Pho Sop which believe to be the God who take good care of various cereal crops. Mae Pho Sop is not different from human who needs love and care.The farmers have to take good care with respect and gratitude. Based on the belief that Mae Pho Sop is nervous, therefore we must keep humbly. Lound noise would chase away Mae Pho Sop and rice fields would become barren. So, when contact with the mother goddess of grain, we should be polite.
In addition to the worship of mother goddess of grain, there are many ceremonies held during the rice cultivation. The most important period will be in the post-harvest and before the new season. Four steps of the ceremony are as following,
Rice is the staple food in Thailand but now divinity of rice is decreased due to environmental changes and the new techniques to help accommodate the farm. As a result, rituals, beliefs gradually faded. Although rice rituals was about to be volatile, but all of us who are consumers can express gratitude to Mae Pho Sop by recognizing the value of rice and not to waste grain. Moreover, promote agriculture as a contribution to the development of Thai society.