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Ghosts in Thailand, part 1 Posted by on Jul 5, 2011 in Beginner, Culture, Intermediate

As evident by their many ghost movies, Thais are very superstitious. They definitely believe in ghosts (pee5 ผี). Just like in the west, Thais also have many different types of ghosts. I won’t go over them all, but I’ll go over the main types.


These are four general categories of ghosts found in Thailand:

1. pee5 sing1 ผีสิง – Haunting Ghosts

This is your normal benevolent ghost. It likes to show itself, but does no harm. You might see it every night in the same exact place at exactly 2:09am walking down the same hallway in an old house. To see it will still frighten you, but otherwise it’s not dangerous.


2. pee5 kon1 bpen1 ผีคนเป็น – Ghosts of the Living

This type of ghost is more like a soul of someone still living that appears before you, or in your dreams. Perhaps the person is dying, or suffering from a traumatic experience and calling for help, or black magic has caused the soul to separate from the living body. There is even a movie about it:


3. pee5 mee1 huang2 ผีมีห่วง – Purposeful Ghosts

This type of ghost shows itself for intentional reasons. It wants you to know something; perhaps lead you into a hidden room to solve the mystery of his/her murder, or try to warn you of some future tragic event. It usually won’t speak, just point or give you clues. Or it might just speak, and you’ll hear voices, but you won’t see it.


4. pee5 lawk2 ผีหลอก – Poltergeists

This type of ghost is borderline evil, mostly because of its personality. It will intentionally show itself to terrify you – just for fun. It’ll break stuff, make noises in the dark, turn off a light every time you turn it on, or leave a hand mark on your mirror while you take a shower. Typically it’s the ghost of a person who died before reaching mental maturity, like a teenager for example. And the ghost will never ‘grow up’.

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