Protected by Mae Posop- the Goddess of Rice

have you ever heard of  Mae Posop?
she is the Goddess of Rice for the Thai people, both farmers, the backbone of Thailand and us, rice consumers.
traditionally, we believe that the rice has spirit.
and mae posop is the mother of rice.
mae = mother. posop = rice
she symbolizes the prosperity of the rice yield and the protection from unwanted natural causes.
since she is a Goddess, we must respect her who gives us the most essential food.

my mom always taught me and my elders not to leave even a grain of cooked rice in the plate at meal time. she strengthened her words by giving a serious look that we  never questioned back.. or even disagreed..
" and don't even step on any forms of rice on the floor that will make mae posop unhappy with us. ".
if we did not believe her, we might get into trouble either from khunyai (granny) or from the fear of having no rice to eat in the later years.
it was also a  good sign that protects us from future starving.
in fact she intentionally trained us to treasure the value of rice and the farmer's hard working job to  sow the seed and produce rice for us.

another thing is, she also told me not to ignore filling home with rice stock.
" don't let the kitchen empty of rice,  my dear little child.."
 i was not allowed to forget her warning until the day i was responsible for bringing home food .  although her favorite brand is not easy to find in any department stores, i may substitute other brand temporarily only in case of emergency!
her brand is "surindhip", of hommali variety from surin province.
it is of fine quality, nice, soft and remains fragrant after cooking.


in the past, when rice had neither brand, nor marketing activities, my mom stocked rice at home by a huge sack of hommali variety.
in our store room, we had at least 2 sacks and i enjoyed playing with it every time.. it was soft, fragrant and clean white and got nice volume to just play with.
today, my family passed on teaching our next generation the same as we were taught..
i am definitely sure that if i mention Mae Posop to any of my nieces and nephews, they should respond to the name accurately.

back to the rice farming of lek.
before lek 's first crop, he has to wai mae posop as suggested by chai and yao. so he called me up while i was on line at my home, and asked,
" can you please check the "rerk" for me, which of the following days will be best for my first crop?"
that was so easy.
 i found the possible dates (rerk = sacred timing of prosperity) for him from the internet and selected date and day for the best timing that aligned with the long queue of the equipment provider .
lek also prepared banana, sweets,  oranges and all sorts of requirements he could to worship Mae Posop before the first crop.
i never question him if he really believes in this rite.
because lek was happy to do and he remained happy after the prayer ..

it took yao and chai years to master rice growing.
lek is just new kid in the field. so he learned his lesson day after day.
in paadrew,  rice is not rainfed like in esaan. it is irrigated fed. 
according to chai, the SUPAN variety is popular here in terms of trade.
" do not bother finding any new variety for your next crop, lek." chai said, " you've got the buyer here who comes direct to our field in order to buy."

at first, without any knowledge in the field, lek chose the  90 days variety that he could do 3 times a year which sounds quite amazing.
and he, idealistically tried his first time to do it totally organic. farmers in the neighborhood kept watching...
the yield was not that good. and naturally, he suffered just like other farmers did after finding out the  balance of expenses and the income !
but lek is still very optimistic of his second crop which will due in february.., the coming month.

i am confident that as long as lek cares and puts all his brain and efforts to rice farming,  Mae Posop, the Mother of Rice will help him.
โดย dryshrimp
วันที่ ศุกร์ มกราคม 2552
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