The Myth of Dao Luk Kai
The myth of Dao Luk Kai - the tale of the Pleiades - is a story that explains the origin of the Pleiades and provides the reason why the star has seven members. It serves as a moral lesson teaching gratefulness to one’s parents.The story tells of a hen and her brood of seven chicklings that sacrificed their lives so that the old couple who raised them could make a meal for the monk. Because of this good deed, their spirits or souls rose into the sky and became the seven stars of Dao Luk Kai (The Chicklings Constellation) or “Kattika” - the Pleiades.
The story of the Pleiades is widespread in the central, northern and northeastern regions of Thailand. Its popularity owes much to the fact that the story was transmitted in the form of lyrical song. In the North, the Chang So or folk singers often sing of Dao Wi Kai Noi story in the social gatherings, celebrations, religious rituals or festivals in order to teach a moral lesson to the younger generation and advise them to maintain good conduct, refrain from bad deeds.
The Dao Luk Kai song that was written and sung by Phon Phirom contributed greatly to the popularity of the story.
O Poor Mother Hen!
With tears in her eyes, she gave
a moral lesson to her brood.
Came morning, Grandpa cut her throat.
Her blood splattered all over the henhouse.
Heart-wrenched, the seven chicklings jumped
into the fire to die with their mother.
Because of the purity of their heart,
they reincarnated as a constellation.