A group of people sit and salute in front of a monk who hold a bowl water and sprinkle on them sometime with some jasmines, longan, and candies; his mouth praying, Cambodia people call it as Srouch Toeuk ceremony.
Cambodian usually organize the Srouch Toeuk ceremony before they host traditional Khmer New Year or when they think they often meet bad luck or often sick.
Sem Sokhom, 25 years old venerable monk in Loum Praleung temple in Sout Nikum district, Siem Reap Province said in the past Khmer used to have tens way of human being treatment, among them Srouch Toeuk is one of them that some Khmer people still believe and often organize.
In Siem Reap, most people believe that Venerable Sem Sokhom is a monk who can use magic to treat them, that why most of them flock to meet him. When people meet him most of them were sprinkled by the hot water that he boiled in the cooker that full of fire, and some were treat by his hole of feet after he step the fired wood.
Usually, the water that most of Cambodian monks sprinkle to their fellows is normal temperature with some jasmines, and perfume, but In Loum Praleung the water that Venerable Sem Sokhom sprinkle to his fellow is hot that he boils on the full fire cooker.
Som San, 42 years old villager from a district in Siem Reap and his feet were contaminated by the skin fire tens year ago were better after he was sprinkled by Venerable Sem Sokhom.
Kuy Veas, 43 years old villager from Bakorng district who lost her memory but she become better after she was sprinkled already, her daughter Mrs. Leum Yanna said.
“Some doctor said my brain has problem and some villagers said I was sick because of the black magic, but my disease never better as I got the hot water sprinkling”, Kuy Veas herself tried to said.
“I do not know who are my children and I don’t understand anything, but everything better when I go the hot water sprinkle. Now I can identify them all and my memory star up again”, she said.
Venerable Sem Sokhom said, actually I can do as they said. “These are the traditional therapy that I have experiences in Kampuchea Krom-Khmer Community in Vietnam territory and some when I went to some rural northern part of the kingdom.
Related to these kind of traditional therapies, Khmer has a proverb said, Akum Psham A Yos and Apey Chum Near No Na Minh Chea Slab – magic is a part of human being’s live and magic, if they do not believe they will die.
Venerable Sem Sokhom said, long time ago it is an effective therapy, especially when there is no modern medicine, but today my way just an abstract believe. I believe that it is a kind a therapy that make vulnerable people believe themselves.
He said ” when people come to see me and invite me to sprinkle hot water for them, I never said I can treat them hundred percent, but when they applied my way some said they are better and some are not”.
Srouch Toeuk, just a way to make them feel better, but the effective treatment is using the traditional herbs, he said. In Cambodia, there are a lot of traditional herbs that can use and treat human being easily by boil them or eat them freshly.
“Khmer traditional herbs is a survival human being treatment way in the Cambodian society today, but Srouch Toeuk is one of Khmer of tens Khmer traditional treatments that they believe and apply it until now”, he said.