A Literary response to the Morally Astute Life of HM King Bhumibol Adulyadej The Great, Thailand’s most beloved monarch
About this lecture
HM King Bhumibol Adulyadej The Great celebrated his 84th birthday on 5 December 2011. Apart from the historic distinction His Majesty has achieved in this joyous celebration, there was a far deeper implication culturally for Thailand – the Thais felicitated their Father, who to many is a God-King, and not without reason. His Majesty has lived for his people, caring for them, consoling them and providing for them. His Majesty’s good deeds and philanthropism for the Thais have been guided by two deep moral behaviors which he displayed as King. The first is his pledge at his accession to the throne in 1946: “We shall reign with justice and fairness over all the people of Thailand”. The second moral guiding force has been what is identified as “Tossapit Rajatham”, the King’s Tenfold Moral Code (Ten Royal Virtues). Using the framework of religio-cultural analyses, this presentation will explore the impacts of Tossapit Rajatham in HM. The King’s rule as elicited from poems composed by the speaker between 1996 and the present time. The aim of this lecture is to show the operant value of moral righteousness as advocated by His Majesty through what His Majesty in the 1970s proposed to be Good Governance. On the other hand, the Thai culture is ideally served through the example of His Majesty’s life and work. Educators in Thailand must take cognisance of such enlightening influences such as His Majesty’s life and work, which could further inspire students and the general populace alike.
About the speaker
Mr Glen Chatelier is currently Director of the Office of International Affairs at Assumption University. He holds degrees from the University of Notre Dame, Indiana (US) and the American College in Madurai (India). As a published poet in Thailand, he writes in the modified sonnet form and for the past 16 years has written in celebration of special anniversaries and birthdays for Their Majesties the late King Rama IX and the Queen Mother of Thailand. His sonnets addressed to the late King more recently have encapsulated the concept of Tossapit Rajatham and the Sufficiency Mindset, which characterises the Sufficiency Economy model set forth during His Majesty’s life. In 2014, His Holiness Pope Francis appointed Mr Chatelier as Consultor to the Pontifical Council for Culture.