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The Ceremony of “Tham Kwan” of a Month-Old Child

cr. Sanook


Kwan“, or the soul, is an important belief in Thai culture. When the kwan becomes lost, the individual succumbs to illness and weakened mental state. Thus, ceremonies must be performed to preserve or retrieve lost kwan of individuals. These ceremonies are called “thum kwan” (ทำขวัญ) or “soo kwan” (สู่ขวัญ).


This article examines the ceremony of tham kwan for a month-old child: an early rite of passage with blended elements of animism, Buddhism, and Brahmanism, which is reflective of the diverse and open nature of Thai culture.


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* This article was published in the Journal of Siam Society and is being shared on the Thailand Foundation Website with permission from The Siam Society.