Retired King Says Hindu God Saved Cambodia

Religious ceremonies or­ganized to appease the Hindu god Indra helped spare Cambo­dia from the underwater quake and re­­sulting tsunamis that dev­as­tated neighboring countries, retired King Norodom Siha­nouk wrote in a message posted on his Web site Friday.

An unnamed woman warned Queen Norodom Monineath several weeks before the deadly Dec 26 quake that, “according to Preah Indra,” a disaster would hit Cam­bodia if “appropriate ceremo­nies were not organized in a certain num­ber of sacred places,” Noro­dom Sihanouk wrote.

Given such warning, Norodom Sihanouk said he and Queen Moni­neath decided to spend a few thousand dollars to organize ceremonies to protect Cambodia from the disaster.

“[T]aking count of the afore­men­tioned ceremonies, Preah In­dra and other Celestial Powers had the great goodness to spare Cambodia and its People,” Noro­dom Sihanouk wrote.

He wrote that he, King Noro­dom Sihamoni and Queen Moni­neath offered their condolences to the families of victims, as well as “a very humble and extremely mo­­dest” contribution of $15,000 to each country affected—Thai­land, Indonesia, India and Sri Lanka.

Prime Minister Hun Sen last week offered $40,000 to help victims in those countries.

In a separate message, King Si­ha­moni expressed his sympathy to Thai King Bhumibol Adul­yadej, whose grandson Poom Jensen, 21, died after the tsu­nami struck the southern re­gion of Thailand where he was va­­ca­tioning.

“[W]e would like to extend to Your Majesty, the Royal Family and the People of the Kingdom of Thailand our heartfelt condolences. May He rest in peace,” King Sihamoni wrote in a letter dated Dec 27.

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