The Cambodian myth of lightning, thunder, and rain – Prumsodun Ok



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“Moni Mekhala Ream Eyso” is the most sacred dance drama in Cambodia. It is performed every year in the buong suong ceremony, and explains the origins of lightning, thunder and rain according to the Khmer people. Prumsodun Ok tells this empowering tale that still enlightens our world today.

Lesson by Prumsodun Ok, animation by Silvia Prietov.

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46 Comments

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  1. Hello. I am Manith, Cambodian Singer/Songwriter and author. First, this is an amazing animation which brought an interesting looks and great storytelling. This myth of Rain, thunder and Lightning is not 100% from Cambodia. It is a religious myth or story in Buddhism. So every buddhist countries have told their people about this myth with the same characters and how they tell this myth is different due to their culture and knowledge of their country. To sum up, This Lightning Thunder and Rain myth is a religious story in Buddhism.

    In additional, the crystal ball which belongs to Moni-Mekhela called កែវមនោហរ (Pronounce Keo-Mo-No-Ha-Ra) and in Khmer Keo means crystal ball, Mo-No means wishing and Ha-Ra means something that has a great power like a goddess. So Keo-Mo-No-Ha-Ra mean the crystal ball of power of wishing. This is why Moni-Mekhela waving the crystal ball to the sky and wish for everything she want.

  2. We have this story in Thailand too, but we have so many versions with slightly different details.
    All of our versions don't mention the hermit though. Mani Mekhala is either a goddess that already possesses her crystal ball, or the daughter of a goddess and a dragon that passed down his crystal ball to her. Ramasoon, a giant that likes her crystal ball and her beauty, chases her as she flies away. Mekhala waves her crystal ball around , creating flashes that blinds Ramasoon, so when he throws his axe in anger, it misses, causing only thunder.
    In some versions we also have Orachun, a god passing by, who is unfortunately thrown by Ramasoon to a spiky corner of the Olympus equivalent Sumeru mountain, killing him.

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