Sun, December 05, 2021

in-focus

Sadness permeates ceremonies but memorie


THE ROYAL Cremation Ground and sites around the nation were filled with sadness as the beloved King Bhumibol Adulyadej was cremated yesterday after one full year of national mourning.

But mourners told The Nation that they were well aware of the “natural truth” of death, and that they had to deal with their sense of loss.
Psychiatrist Pumin Chalachiva, who was on duty at a medical centre near Sanam Luang, advised all mourners to balance their emotions, not be too depressed, and try to live in the present.
Loss is common in life, and we should turn it into power to do meaningful and good deeds following the teaching of the late King, he said.
The cremation yesterday was the last time mourners could bid the King goodbye, the psychiatrist said, and he was worried mass hysteria would take place. 
Fortunately, mourners only demonstrated the normal level of depression following the death of a loved one. There were no signs of serious mental illness, Pumin said.
However, if anyone felt too depressed and it affected their normal lives, they should see a psychiatrist to discuss the illness, he added.
Mourners around the ceremonial grounds said the great loss had hurt deeply over this past year, but they understood very well that they had to deal with it.
Arunee Kittikomkul, 70, from Ratchaburi, said that she still thought of King Bhumibol almost every day.
“All my life, I have known this dedicated King. It is not easy to come to terms with this loss,” she said. “I still cry sometimes, but I also try not to. I know that we have to live in the present.”
However, Arunee said she was confident that she was healthy mentally. The sorrow was part of the loss and she believed that she would get better over time.
Another mourner at Sanam Luang yesterday, Panitha Phookhangnithit, 60, said that it hurt terribly to learn the bad news of the King’s death. But in the past year, she had recovered from the pain. 
With the cremation taking place, Panitha said she was not as depressed as she had been over the past year. However, she wanted to come to bid the late King farewell for the very last time, she said.
“We all have to accept this truth and try to live on. We can think of him because he was a great man. But life goes on,” she said.
Similarly, Udon Chantrirat, 58, said that the loss had hurt a lot over the past year but everyone had to learn to let go.
“I admit that I still cry sometimes, too. But death is common. We cannot deny this,” he said. “So, we can be sad and everything, but in the end we have to accept that it has already happened. Even the Buddha could not resist this natural truth.” 
 

Published : October 26, 2017

By : Kasamakorn Chanwanpen The Nation