Exploring Naga Images: Textual Analysis of Thailand’s Narratives

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Ya-Liang Chang


Naga, the guardian of the Buddhist Three Gems, dominates the waters, and is an important cultural image in Thailand, as well as an auspicious symbol in ordinary life. This article uses nine Thai stories as texts to explore images of the Naga. The results show that the Naga images of Thailand’s narratives can be divided into two types: images from Buddhist stories and those from indigenous stories. The main difference between the two types is the Naga’s behavior after converting to Buddhism. The findings also imply that serpent worship probably existed before Brahmanism and Theravada Buddhism came into Southeast Asia.

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Chang, Y.-L. (2017). Exploring Naga Images: Textual Analysis of Thailand’s Narratives. Journal of Mekong Societies, 13(1), 19–35. Retrieved from https://so03.tci-thaijo.org/index.php/mekongjournal/article/view/84923