This photograph captures a graduation ceremony at Mahachulalongkornrajavidyalaya Buddhist University at Wat Suan Dok in Chiang Mai, Thailand. The ceremony is held in honor of monks on their fourth year of their English major. In this traditional Buddhist ceremony, first, second, and third year students tie sacred white strings around each of the graduating students' wrists to protect them in their future endeavors. The ceremony is bittersweet for these students, as they will soon be leaving the friends they have lived and worked with for four years. These monks will continue on a variety of different paths, many continuing their education, others becoming laypeople, and some going on to teach English to others. (Date: March 2007). Note: This photo won 3rd Place in the Global Tides photo contest.
Student photography, travel, Thailand, monks, Buddhism