‘Spirit Tree’ Trunks Inspire Lottery Numbers, Possess Woman (Photos)

People making offerings to ta-khian tree trunks for lucky lottery numbers early Thursday morning in Prachinburi.

PRACHINBURI — Flotsam from five trees washed ashore and attracted the attention of lucky lottery number seekers early Thursday morning.

As the bi-monthly lottery results loomed Thursday, residents took to worshiping five hopea odorata, or ta-khian, tree trunks which washed ashore just before midnight Tuesday on a bank of the Hanuman River in Prachinburi’s Kabin Buri District.

A woman even claimed to have been possessed by a spirit.

“I am the chao mae Nang Ta-khian that inhabits this place,” a daring woman said after having raced down to the edge of the water to prostrate to the tree trunks before claiming to be possessed by Nang Ta-khian. The woman held up several fingers, saying that the numbers one to five were lucky.

Others rubbed powder on the tree trunks, and claimed to see the numbers 145, 500, 572 and 79. People jotted down the auspicious numbers on small sheets of paper they had brought with them to pay their respects to the tree trunks.

According to animist Thai beliefs, sylvan spirits called Nang Ta-khian inhabit ta-khian trees. Shrines and offerings for Nang Ta-khian can be found around the kingdom near these large, sprawling trees.

The group of five tree trunks was believed to be a family of spirits: a mother, a father and three children.

Online, some Thai netizens jotted down the same numbers, while others showed a touch of skepticism.

“If I remember correctly, this area is already a ta-khian shrine. I guess the family floated down the river to that spot because they knew they would have a home,” wrote Facebook user Sailom Haengkwamwung. “Please give the prize to me this lottery round, sadhu.”

On the other hand, user Kiam Kub wrote, “The best way to get rich is to work. Don’t be superstitious. Just buy a ticket or two each lottery round, and spend money on your family instead.”

People surround the reportedly possessed woman near the site of the five ta-khian trees.
People surround the reportedly possessed woman near the site of the five ta-khian trees.

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