Farang cannot know Thai-ness

Re: Farang cannot know Thai-ness

Postby murruntani on Fri Dec 09, 2011 3:24 am

There is an old saying : a donkey that goes travelling will never return as a horse.
Travelling does not necessarily broaden the mind, as some of these posts prove.
I have read all of this forum with some interest as I am going to marry a Thai. I am not sure how much I need to understand Thai in order to love someone. I love her because she is a beautiful person. I respect her culture because it has made her who she is. I want to learn her language because I want to communicate better with her and her family and friends.
I understand that when a man (Thai or other) marries into a Thai family he accepts responsibilities to assist in their support and to help them when needed. This is a country without a welfare system, and people must rely on each other for support.
Every country and culture faces the same problems in a rapidly growing global culture. What we are able to retain of our once separate cultures will be determined in time. I live and work with Tiwi people in remote Australia and they face the same problems.
From what I can see, Thailand is no better and no worse than anywhere else. People are people the world over. Reach out, listen, smile, try to be humble and accept difference, try to learn from those we meet, respect their knowledge, and try to live with love in your heart. I am not Thai and don't want to be. I am me, and want to learn from every situation.
That said, there is something beautiful about the Thai people I have met: calm, friendly, helpful, generous, welcoming, hard working, respectful, wishing to avoid or minimise conflict. Long live Thai-ness! Long Live the King!
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Re: Farang cannot know Thai-ness

Postby marcelg on Tue Dec 20, 2011 10:04 am

Well maybe, some of these concerns may be true, being from America and i met a wonderful Thai lady regardless what country or culture a woman is from,a woman is a woman and a man is a man. i always treat them with respect regardless, if they rip me off, oh well, They will be the looser and they will have the lost of a good friend. I take care of my Thai lady. yes they need money...don't we all But i think once you gained their trust... Man, you have a friend for life. I came from a poor family in NYC. The gehttos Queens and rose to a wealthy person living in california, I have empathy for these Thai's. I never had any problems when i was in Thailand , they are the friendlyest people on earth if you ask me,
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Re: Farang cannot know Thai-ness

Postby rely.thai on Sat Dec 31, 2011 12:25 am

@ marcelg How can you possibly say that "yes they need money" I'm sorry but if it is a "normal girl money have nothing to do in the couple and certainly not "need". Moreover it seems that you haven't travelled enough, of course Thais people tend to be friendly (if you respect them) but go to Burma or Indonesia, you will see what is friendly people.
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Re: Farang cannot know Thai-ness

Postby wyothinker on Mon Jan 09, 2012 12:30 am

It is this type of xenophobic thought that concerns me as I make decisions in my life. I have a Thai fiancee and we are currently working through the difficult decision of who relocates to where. Do I relocate to Thailand or does she come to the US?

Despite our current political rhetoric, the United States is a nation of immigrants. When you establish U.S. citizenship, you are an American -- it depends not where you were born or what cultural traditions your family maintains: you are at that time an American. This seems to mitigate towards my Thai fiancee coming to the U.S. Why? Because no matter how long I live in Thailand; no matter how I may dedicate myself to incorporating myself into the Thai community; without regard to what contributions I may make to Thailand; even if I qualify for and obtain Thai citizenship -- I will always be a farang.

To live in Thailand, I have to accept that I may not own my home and other legal disabilities which she will not suffer in the U.S.

Now, I am not suggesting that Thai-ness should be diluted - if I wanted a bland, vanilla, experience I would marry an American. I am drawn to Thailand through my love of Buddhism and my deeply held interest and respect for Thai culture. But, it would be nice if part of that Thai culture evolved from a "Thailand for Thai's" perspective based upon that accident of birth, which most of us un-Enlightened beings are unable to control -- to one of "Thailand for Thai's and Thai's at heart".
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Re: Farang cannot know Thai-ness

Postby colorcode7 on Fri Jan 13, 2012 3:21 pm

I'm an American and i've been in Thailand 9 years and have no intention of returning for more than family visits. I don't experience the xenophobia spoken about though I occassionally read of it. I find Thais are heart people at their nature and so if I operate from my heart, they feel at ease dropping into theirs.

@Murrantani - you've got it right! "People are people the world over. Reach out, listen, smile, try to be humble and accept difference, try to learn from those we meet, respect their knowledge, and try to live with love in your heart. I am not Thai and don't want to be. I am me, and want to learn from every situation."

@Jerreli - buddy, you've got to lose the brainwashing. What is ruining america is not a push towards certain social services (what you are referring to as socialism) because this push is a natural result for a mass of similarly producing people coming to expect similar availability of services (in this case medical) for being part of the work force. What is ruining the US has been the systematic conversion to FASCISM, which is the melding of business and government. And just like separation of church and state was VERY necessary at some point (and notice under Bush we started funding churches too) so too now is the separation of business and state. It has been a systematic financial rape on an unprecidented scale. We could easily afford all the social services people could possibly want IF all corporations were actually paying taxes. Instead, we have (through our politicians) allowed the systematic rewriting of our tax laws to allow loopholes that get 2/3 of those corporations out of paying taxes AT ALL. And this DESPITE all time high corporate profits.

In the last 30 years we have seen the rate of corporate tax COLLECTION (notice I'm not talking about actual corporate tax rates) decrease while the TAX RATE on middle and lower income individuals has increased. Real earnings of middle and lower income are down over the last 30 years while upper income earners and corporations have skyrocketed. It has been a clear attack on the masses by the minority. We probably wouldnt even have a nation debt if the corporations were paying their fair share.

They love getting the right blaming socialism and the left blaming the right. But both of these are misleads. Open your eyes and you too will see the truth.
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Re: Farang cannot know Thai-ness

Postby kees on Sat Jan 14, 2012 9:40 am

murruntani wrote:That said, there is something beautiful about the Thai people I have met: calm, friendly, helpful, generous, welcoming, hard working, respectful, wishing to avoid or minimise conflict. Long live Thai-ness! Long Live the King!

Please, please let me know where I can find that people.......
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Re: Farang cannot know Thai-ness

Postby denz on Mon Jan 23, 2012 2:35 pm

I think the bottom line that we should consider is the culture. That's how the culture of this country educate the people. Isolate their minds' within the borders of their country(except for those who were educated outside). Living their thoughts in the past belief of their ancertors that had been handed down from generation to generation. I think "Thai-ness" is just a sort of Thai hypocracy. Frankly, I'm a Filipino and even if my country is not that progressive compared to thiers' but Filipinos are more open minded to accept the norms of the world. I've been teaching here for the last 2 years but surprisingly the first time I came here I found out how limited the knowledge of the students of the outside world. They only knew things about Thailand. Just like my funniest experience in Bangkok when I rode a "tuk-tuk" going to Dusit Zoo. The driver ask me "where you from"? so, I said "from the Philippines, then he ask me again "where is that"? (hahahahaha.....)
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Re: Farang cannot know Thai-ness

Postby Inlovewiththai on Thu Jan 26, 2012 7:57 pm

As someone who has lived in Thailand for a number of years I could care less about knowing Thai-ness. I respect the Thai people, obey the law, show reverence for Bhudda, pray for the King and enjoy my Thai friends. I do not ask to be Thai, as I am an American. The world is lucky that when they come to the U.S. they can blend in and start a new life if they can get a Visa. Here in Thailand I will never blend in. I am a Farang and they do let me know that by charging me more and snickering behind my back, or in my face. In the US a Thai can pretty much go on with life and get a job, education and begin a new life. Don't get me wrong, I love Thailand, but this is the land of the corrupt, the land based on Thai's having no concept of the world. It is a land that changes it's government with a coup and has elections that just never will satisfy anyone. This is a land where the poor are poor and the rich are rich. I have seen first hand how the rich treat the poor. I think sometimes the street does are treated better. So the bottom line is that I could care less about Thai-ness, I am a citizen of the world. I do not want to be Thai, but I do want to be respected and treated as someone who contributes to Thailand. Thais defend Thailand, but for many have no sense of the world, which is a major problem in this country and will prevent it from moving ahead like Vietnam.
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Re: Farang cannot know Thai-ness

Postby Ian Wensor on Tue Jan 31, 2012 10:43 am

This article has been running for months now but most have failed to hit the nail on the head...Most farangs do understand Thai-ness from the moment they step off the plane where they're met with immigration bureaucracy, treated like criminals and are victims of all forms of rorts and scams :twisted: :?
They're then subjected to things such as double pricing :x and when dining out with Thai friends, the farang is often confronted with a host of univited family and 'blow ins' :x :o who've received a phone call that a freed feed is in the offing because the farang's paying the check bin however, he's always the last one served :roll: :o . :x

Unless and until Thais realise :idea: allegations that 'farangs don't understand Thai-ness' is merely an ruse to save face, hide their own shortcomings and an excuse not to clean out the graft and corruption that currently exists, Thailand's economic, social and political well being will never reach its full potential but will in fact ... continue to worsen.
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Re: Farang cannot know Thai-ness

Postby MarkmBha on Sat Feb 04, 2012 5:41 pm

To know THAI, for a foreigner, is almost impossible.
I have lived in Thailand for 26 years with a Thai.
I know most of "What it means to be Thai", but
I do not have it in my blood! :idea:
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