“Why do we Loy Kratong ?”
Loy Kratong festival is the day people in the region thank and apologise to the goddess of rivers, Gaṅgā.
But, we actually instead put Kratong in rivers for nothing but trash every year.
Statistically, only in Bangkok, there are over 800,000 Kratongs floated.
Estimation says that there are several millions garbage of Kratongs in each country observing this festival, and most of them are made from environmental-destroying materials, such as, foam, plastic, or paper.
For the past few years, there are natural-material Kratongs, but did you know that some of them still can pollute the water!?
The idea of Bread, Snack, Corn, Ice Cream Cone Kratongs seems to be a nice one, and kind to fish, but actually, these Kratongs can cause even worse pollution to the environment because fish do not feel like eating them. Lots of them are with artificial colouring and flavouring.
Moreover, they can be broken up easily and separated all around. The worst water polluter, marine lives die, and cannot be collected afterwards.
So, if we like to Loy Kratong, which Kratong would we choose to be environmental-friendly, together with getting the virtue and merit in our heart?
We have summarised it for your easy reading here.
The brand-new idea that came up last year which you can easily do it at home without spending even a baht
The great idea, but needs good care as well. Care for the eco-friendly container holding it to the river.
You had better not using any joss sticks or candles. Just flowers are sufficiently beautiful. If you have time, you can even decorate it making mock-up from plants or vegetables.
Caution: Observe how many people are floating Ice Kratong. If there are too many, the water temperature can be colder enough that it threatens sea lives.
Others can help use alternative Kratongs as these:
Banana Leaf Kratong
The well-known original Kratong, but do not forget to select ones without artificial decoration. Avoid ones with staplers, needles, or pins. It is not only safe for the environment, but also for the collectors, and decomposers.
Banana Leaf Sheaf Kratong
This Kratong is simple yet gorgeous. In fact, it is the original Kratong in the Mae-Klong and Ampawa Banana Leaf Sheaf’s Loy Kratong Festival for over a century. If you have some free time, try visiting the festival for a memorable atmosphere.
Banana Blossom Kratong
This Kratong is not very familiar. A banana blossom is the cone and flower of a banana tree. It is dark red on the outside, while white inside. It is used to make food, and also Kratong.
Wonderful. Fragrant. Colours to choose from. Symbol of Buddism. Definitely suitable for the Apology to the goddess Gaṅgā.
Coconut Shell Kratong
A normal coconut shell can float pretty well, and not topped over, plus an ease for collecting.
Corn Husk Kratong
This remains from cattle feed can be used to make Kratong, too. It can be folded and rolled in shapes easily. So it can be modified as to your creativity.
“Even if it is made from natural materials, it can still pollute the water. Authority needs to collect them. That means budget.
So, we should Loy only 1 Kratong per couples or family.
Or choose a smaller Kratong to help reduce waste.”
Or you can “Loy Kratong Online” instead.
There are several websites for you to do it. You need not to go through the traffic, spend zero baht, and definitely not destroying the environment.
Even if you may not feel the real festival, but there are lots of features for you to play with, whether it be Kratong type choosing, lighting up or not, find your favourite place, or insert your wish and name. You can also see others’ Kratongs, including the song, atmosphere, beautiful graphic, and even the prohibited activities as fireworks and Komloy Ballooning.
Lastly, No Loy Kratong. Just making merit at a temple can fulfil your heart and mind.
If you still need some atmosphere, you can sit by a river, canal, or pond, and light up a candle for your wishes, but don’t forget to bring back or drop your candle in a bin.
Loy Kratong this year, November 11th, let’s help save the rivers, not hurting sea lives, for the right way of the Goddess Gaṅgā apology.
Because we always believe that
One Small Change
One Big Difference