ช่วงนี้พอมีเวลาเลยนั่งรวบรวมข้อมูลของคำว่า "สินสอด" ,"SinSod" ก็ไม่ได้นั่งเขียนเองหรอกค่ะ แต่ก็พยายามหาข้อมูลมาให้ เนื่องจากว่า จากประสบการณ์ของตัวเอง เป็นเรื่องที่ยากมากสำหรับที่จะอธิบายฝ่ายชายเรื่องสินสอด เพราะฝรั่งเขาไม่เข้าใจค่ะ ว่าทำไมคนไทยถึงต้องขายลูกสาว เขาคิดงี้จริงๆค่ะ เราก็พยายามจะอธิบายนะว่ามันเป็นฟระเพณีของไทยแต่โบราณ แต่ปัญหามันมีอยู่ว่า ถ้าพูดภาษาไทยคงจะคุยกันรู้เรื่อง แต่ต้องพูดภาษปะกิตนี่สิ ปวดกะโหลกไปเลย คุยไปทะเลาะกันไป เลยขู่ไปเลย ถ้ายอมรับประเพณีไทยไม่ได้ก็เลิกกันไปซะ เอางั้นเลย สุดท้ายเขาต้องไปค้นคว้าหาข้อมูลทำความเข้าใจจนได้ อิอิ ก็เลยคิดว่า เพื่อนๆหลายคนก็คงประสบปัญหานี้เหมือนกัน ไม่มากก็น้อย เอาล่ะเข้าเรื่องเลยดีกว่า ตามมาเลยค่ะ
Thai dowry must be one of the most discussed issues on Thailand web boards. The Thai dowry system is known as the 'Sin Sod'. Traditionally, the groom will be expected to pay a dowry or sin sod to the family, to compensate them for the loss of their daughter. The dowry or sin sod is also to demonstrate that the groom is financially capable of taking care of their daughter. The idea of "paying" for your bride is deeply embedded in Thai culture and is considered absolutely normal. Most Westerners however find this idea somewhere between distasteful or an absolute scam. The concept of dowry is not a Western concept as many Westerners believe in romantic love and that money has nothing to do with it. Usually, the dowry is symbolic and will normally be returned to the couple after the wedding.
"Sinsod" OR "Dowry"
Traditionally, what might be called a dowry is paid by the groom to the bride’s family. The groom is in effect paying for ‘the mother’s milk’ or the upbringing of his bride. If the bride has had a good upbringing then the amount of sinsod will be higher. If the bride has not been married before, has no children, is well-educated, has a good career and stable family life, then this will be reflected in the amount of sinsod asked for. It also goes to show that the groom is financially capable of looking after his wife and indeed, his wife’s family if needs be. It is important to stress how crucial the concept of family is in Thai life. If you are marrying a Thai, you are also marrying in to that person’s family and everything that may entail.
It’s impossible to say how much is the right price to pay for sinsod because there are so many variables involved. Some Thai families may see their daughter marrying a foreigner as the equivalent of winning the lottery. Despite the fact that the groom may not be a rich man in his home country, he will be deemed to be a rich man in Thailand and a vast amount may be asked for. By contrast, some Thai families may appreciate that the prospective son-in-law comes from a different culture and may not ask for sinsod in return for a solemn promise to take care of their daughter. In some cases sinsod is accepted by the bride’s parents and is given back the following day as a wedding present to the newlyweds.
It can be quite a thorny issue for Western men marrying Thai women, but it should be understood that if you are marrying in Thailand it is something you will very likely have to come to terms with. If you are considering marriage to a Thai national you should already be aware that Thai culture is very different and should not feel insulted if asked for sinsod. One thing that many Thai grooms do is to pay the sinsod in small denominations (i.e. 100 Baht notes) so that the amount on show looks even more impressive when it is spread out.
The most important aspect is ‘face’. This can’t be stressed enough. Keep your cool and liaise with your wife-to-be and her family to reach a mutually agreeable amount. Sometimes the amount paid in sinsod will be returned by the bride’s family to the wedding couple. By having a large amount of sinsod paid, the Thai family don’t lose face with their friends and peers. It might not be important to you what other people think of you, but it matters to Thai people and that should never be forgotten in any aspect of Thai culture.
(แหล่งที่มาค่ะ http://www.watdee.com/sinsod.html )
Dowry (Sin Sod)
Thai parents tend to view marriage as being based on financial security. Hence the dowry or sin sod.No Thai family would want their daughter to marry someone who does not have an interest in the financial security of the family.
This makes the dowry a must during a Thai wedding ceremony. Look at dowry from a Thai perspective.Cultures and traditions are different. As an example when a Thai man marries a woman he would generally move into the family home. It would then become his responsibility to manage his in-laws business be it a farm or a store. He would also be tasked with taking care of her family members and anyone related to her family. Should he fall into financial difficulty her family would then support him. The concept of dowry or sin sod even though alien to Westerners shows how closely knit Thai’s are compared to Westerners who are more individual in deed and thought. What is normal in the West such as “old age homes” or old age pensions are not standard in Thailand. Children take care of the family during their retirement years. The dowry is therefore important in Thai culture.
In Thailand inheritance of the family home and family land is generally through the female children. Dowry however is not linked to it directly. The husband of the daughter in the family would therefore reap the any benefit of all that might have been achieved by his wife’s parents. Unfortunately being a foreigner you don't benefit from the equation. Firstly a foreigner cannot own land or a house in Thailand in his name. (Consult a reputable law firm to discuss your options). It is the lack of benefit that most foreigners object to paying dowry. Even though some Westerners object to the concept of dowry, many simply disagree with the amount payable. The amount of dowry paid usually depends on the social status of the family and/or the level of education of the bride or her income alternatively both. A dowry of a million baht for an uneducated woman is unheard of. A Dowry for an average middle class educated Thai would normally be in the region of 100,000 Baht.
This varies as an example, should the bride be a divorcee or a ‘'Mia Maiy' - a spoiled/ruined wife, normally no dowry is paid. If she has a child or children from a former marriage or relationship no dowry is paid either.
Thai Dowry is a touchy subject in Thailand with Westerners. Normally you or someone in your family approaches the Thai woman’s parents to negotiate” Tong Mun" and "Sin Sod." Tong Mun which literally means "gold engagement" is in reality 24 karat gold jewelry given to the bride. The concept is similar to an engagement ring in the West. Sin Sod is the dowry itself. The word "Sin" means riches. This could be anything of value. In Africa it would include farm animals, land and such. "Sod” on the other hand is the act of storing or in this context holding the "Sin". Hence the term Sin Sod or dowry.
The "Tong Mun" or engagement ring will be presented to the bride at a ceremony called a "Phitee Mun," which normally takes place at the bride’s parent’s home. This is mainly attended by family members and shows acceptance into the family. You and your prospective bride are now viewed as a "Koo Mun" which literally means "tied or joined couple," (engaged party). Ever seen a Westerner in Thailand with loads of string tired around his wrists? He partook in a "Bai Sri Soo Kwan" or engagement ceremony. The engagement ceremony concludes with each guest tying a string around the wrist of the bride and that of the groom, while giving the married couple their blessings, followed by the placing of a garland of flowers around the couple’s necks. This is followed by the “Koo Mun,” or the actual wedding ceremony a few weeks later with the presentation of the dowry.
Dowry however does not play a role when registering a Thai marriage. There is no need to show that dowry had been paid as it is not part of the legal system. Dowry is a tradition not a law.
(แหล่งที่มาค่ะ http://www.marrythailand.com/thailand-dowry.php )
The History of a Traditional Thai Wedding Ceremony
Many traditional Thai weddings are still arranged and take place with adherence to centuries old traditions. Though much rarer now than in former times, in some areas, particulary rural ones and amongst families in high society, couples are still matched, in some cases to people they hardly know. These matches are arranged by the parents of two young people who come from similar socio-economic backgrounds, and from families with mutually favorable views of the youngsters respective backgrounds and rearing.While this kind of matchmaking is much rarer than it used to be, dowries are still often expected and given, even when the young couple have courted and chosen one another. The amount of the dowry is negotiated by the parents, however in contrast to India for example, where custom dictates payment of a sum of money or property by the bride's family, in Thailand it is the reverse, with the groom's family paying the family of the bride for the loss of not only a daughter, but a valued worker and caregiver. The value of a dowry will vary depending on the social and economic status of the woman being "given away." Fifty thousand baht may be paid to the family of a farm girl, while many hundreds of thousands or even millions of baht may be offered in matches involving wealthy merchant class or high society families.
When a Thai says they are married, it is often in the Buddhist, though not neccesarily legal sense. Of primary importance is sanctification and blessing by monks, which is enough for many couples who see no need to officially register their marriage, or who choose not to do so for other practical reasons. As in many parts of Asia, the wife is still seen by society as being subordinate to her husband, and a marriage is sometimes likened to an elephant, where the wife is the hind legs. Traditionally, the engagement took place during a ceremony called Thong Mun, when the man presented a gift of gold to his fiancee. The ceremony was attended by parents, relatives and friends. The gold was likely to be in form of a necklace, measured in weight using a system called the baht (also the name of the currency used in Thailand.) One baht of gold is the equivalent of 1 troy ounce, or about 15 grams. A minimum of 2 baht is given, but never an amount that is not divisible by two. The fianceed couple are henceforth referred to as "Kumun" until they are married. The engagement may take place well in advance of the wedding, or it may be precede the wedding on the same day.
In former times payment of the dowry or "sinsod" also merited a ceremony, called "Sinsod Tongman" when the money and/or property were formally presented. In modern times, the payment is often made at the wedding, and the engagement ceremony may have been deemed unnecessary. However the wedding rituals presided over by the monks remain elaborate and often lengthy.
The ceremony may be held in the home of the bride, or finances permitting, a hall, restaurant or hotel. A number of monks - anywhere from 3 to 9 attend, with a senior monk leading the recitation of Pail chants that bless the union. This must take place in the morning, allowing the monks who cannot eat after midday, to partake of an offered meal, following. All are seated on the floor or a platform, and the setting is adorned with a Buddha image, an altar, fragrant flowers, candles and incense. The chants are followed by application of powdered incense to the foreheads of the bride and groom, a symbolic presentation of coiled string, and finally the pouring of water over the couple's hands, first by the village elder and then one by one, by all of the guests.Those who attend the ceremony are also invited to the party afterwards, where during a copious meal the bride and groom go from table to table to pay their respects to their guests. Traditionally they will present each with a small souvenir and at this time gifts of cash in envelopes are placed on a tray carried by the couple. Other gifts such as useful household items may also be presented to the couple at this time.
In ancient times a wedding chamber ceremony followed the party, when a married elderly couple would prepare the wedding bed and place on it a plate with offerings of food symbolizing fertility, while other token symbols of good luck and prosperity were placed in the room. Meanwhile a silver and a golden barrier were created outside the room by the guests, through which the couple passed before proceeding to the wedding chamber, where they were advised by their elders of their future responsibilities, and had their union blessed. The guests then retire leaving the couple alone.
(แหล่งที่มาค่ะ http://www.weddingsinthailand.com/traditional_thai_wedding.php )