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Saturday, September 6, 2008

Prime Minister Samak Sundaravej is a collector of Buddha amulets and Buddha images



SAMAK HEADS TO TEMPLE TO MAKE MERIT, LIFT SPIRITS

Prime Minister Samak Sundaravej has steadfastly refused to bow to demands by the People's Alliance for Democracy (PAD) for him to resign and dissolve parliament. He says such actions would not solve the country's problems. There have been whispers that Mr Samak has been searching for answers at a temple.

All was quiet at his residence on Soi Navamin 81 yesterday.

Security was still tight, even though there were no students turning up to clamour for his resignation, as on Thursday.

The prime minister had no official functions to attend to yesterday. But about 10am, he was seen leaving his house in his car, with his entourage of security guards in tow.
He took the expressway at Lat Phrao and turned left at Soi Choke Chai 4.

Reporters were following him when his security guards thwarted their efforts to find out exactly where he was heading.

It was reported that Mr Samak might have gone to a temple to make merit in what many saw as a bid to lift his sagging morale in the face of mounting pressure from critics demanding his ouster.

People close to Mr Samak confirmed he often sought solace in temples and gave offerings in merit-making ceremonies when his morale was low.

Associates said he is a collector of Buddha amulets and Buddha images.

He also has Buddha images crafted and gives them to others as gifts. Perhaps the most famous Buddha image is called phra pairee pinas (Defeating the enemies).

''At social functions, Mr Samak usually gives phra pairee pinas images as a token of his appreciation,'' a source close to the prime minister said.

The source added at wedding receptions, the brides usually receive a statue of phra siam thewathirat (The Lord Protector of Siam) from Mr Samak.

Lately, many astrological forecasts have spelled trouble for him.

According to former senator Boonlert Pairin, who is a well-known astrologer, the stars of Mr Samak showed that he would find himself in great trouble and it is highly likely that he could lose his position as prime minister. It is believed that the more such gloomy predictions keep coming up, the more he will try to seek ways to ward off bad luck.

When Mr Samak was sworn in as prime minister, astrologers forecast that he would not last long in office, prompting angry responses from him.

After that, however, he was seen attending a ceremony worshipping Rahu, the god of darkness, arranged by a temple near Hua Lamphong.

Source: Bangkokpost.com

See lots of interesting amulets at:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/skybeliever2000

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