Ancient Buddhism scriptures retrieved from the Bamiyan mountains in Afghanistan where two giant Buddha statues were destroyed by the Taleban government are scheduled to arrive today for public exhibition and worship. The ceremony, with the Norwegian ambassador invited, was set for the auspicious time of 9.19am, not long after the flight lands from Norway.
A reception is scheduled at Suvarnabhumi Airport to welcome the 2,500yearold scriptures, believed to be the world’s first writing of the Tripitaka, before it is taken to the Buddha Monthol complex in Nakhon Pathom for display initially until February.
“Negotiations are underway to keep the scriptures in Thailand until the next Magha Puja Day in March,” Amnart Buasiri, acting director of the National Buddhism Office, said yesterday.
The pubic display and worship were also in honour of His Majesty the King’s 83rd birthday next month.
The ceremony, with the Norwegian ambassador invited, was set for the auspicious time of 9.19am, not long after the flight lands from Norway.
The scriptures were believed to have been written in the sixth centu�ry and were kept in the Bamiyan Valley before they were smuggled out of Afghanistan for fear of destruction by the extremist Muslim Taleban government, which ruled the country until 2001 when they destroyed two giant Buddha statues. They were later toppled from power following the US’ intrusion.
The scriptures should arrive at the Buddha Monthol at 3pm, when another ceremony is held, before the ancient document is put on view.