Sunday, 3 May 2009

Monk’s Living Quarters from Four Regions - Pt 3

Northeastern Region Monk’s Living Quarters

Phra Arjarn Mun Phurithatto Wat Pa Suthavas, Sakon Nakhon

He was born into the "Kaen Kaeo" family on January 20, 1870 at Baan Khambong, Khong Jeam District, Ubon Ratchathani, a province in northeastern Thailand. First ordained as a novice monk when he was 15 at Wat Khambong, he later had to leave the temple to help his family’s business. But when he turned 22, he was ordained as a monk again and learned Dhamma, meditation, and spiritual contemplation with Phra Arjarn Sao Kantasrilo, one of the most renowned and respected monks in the northeastern region who specialized in meditation and contemplation.

Phra Arjarn Mun Phurithatto is one of the most highly respected monks of the country. His disciples who are well known to most Thai people include Luangpu Dul Atalo, Luangpu Wan Sujinno, and Luangpu Fun Arjaro. Phra Arjarn Mun Phurithatto was dubbed by his student as "Arjarn Yai", meaning the head teacher or guru. Incomparably, Phra Arjarn Mun Phurithatto is the ideal prototype of a good monk who provided solace for Thai people whenever they faced problems or trouble in life. He lived his life as a monk for 56 years and passed away at the age of 79 on November 11, 1949 at Wat Pa Sutthavas.

Luangpu Rhean Woralapho Wat Arunbanphot, Sri Chiang Mai, Nong Khai

He was born on January 8, 1912 at Baan Mho, Sri Chiang Mai, Nong Khai, a province in northeastern Thailand. His former name was Rhean Jaikhan Samanasak. He bid goodbye to his parents and was ordained as a monk on January 1932 when he was 20 years old. He lived as a monk at Wat Baan Hong Thong, Tha Bo District, Nong Khai.

Luangpu Rhean Woraphapho had a very profound faith in Buddhism. He traveled to many places in the north, south, and Isaan region to practice meditation. He also met with many gurus such as Phra Arjarn Mun Phurithatto and Luangpu Tes Tesrangsi. Luangpu Rhean Woralapho ardently adopted their suggestions and advice about Buddhism. He also preached and helped disseminate Dhamma to general Thai Buddhists until he passed away at the age of 93.
Southern Region Monk’s Living Quarters

Phra Ratchamunee Sameeram Khunupamajarn (Luangpu Thuad)Wat Chang Hai, Pattani.

According to the history gazette, he was born in 1582 at Suan Jan Village, Sathing Phra City. The time was the late era of King Phra Maha Dhamma Racha of the Ayuthaya period. The exact time when he was first ordained is not indicated. He had the Buddhist name "Ramo Dhammamiko", but usually people called him "Chao Sameeram" or "Chao Sameeramo."He studied at many temples and sacred places before eventually journeying by boat to further his studies at the capital of the Ayuthaya Kingdom.

He stayed at Wat Kae and studied at Wat Lumpini Nawad and then stayed at the temple of Somdej Phra Sangkharaj (His Holy Highness the Supreme Patriarch). When he was dexterous enough in Dhamma and Buddhism, he journeyed to Wat Rachanuwad to practice Dhamma during the Khao Phansa or rains retreat period. The King Somdej Phra Ekathossarod promoted and appointed him as "Somdej Phra Rachamunee Sameeram Khunupamajarn" when he took the gauntlet from abroad and won in the competition of Buddha Riddles and Script Decoding. He also journeyed in many places to spread Dhamma and preach to people. Wherever he stayed, that site would be the centre of Buddhism for people of all classes to learn.

Phra Guru Visaisophon (Phra Arjarn Tim Dhamma Tharo)Wat Chang Hai, Pattani

Phra Arjarn Tim Dhamma Tharo, formerly known as Thim Phompradu, was born on August 21, 1912 at Baan Na Pradu, Khok Pho District, Pattani. He was ordained as a novice at the age of 18 before defrocking himself to help his parents on their farm. When he was 20, he was ordained as a monk at Wat Na Pradu and stayed there for two years before moving to Wat Mudjalin Thawapee Vihan to study Buddhist scripture and Dhamma. In 1941, he became abbot of the ancient Wat Rat Burana (Wat Chang Hai). The temple was very old and had been left unattended for so long he had to wholly redevelop and renovate all the facilities of the temple so that it would be more convenient for people to go there to make merit. He had to journey to and fro between Wat Chang Hai and Wat Pradu at the time since he was a monk student and at the same time he was also abbot.Phra Arjarn Tim Dhamma Tharo kept to the Buddhist path very stringently and was revered by both Thai Buddhists and foreigners. He eventually succumbed to digestive tract cancer and peacefully passed away on November 30, 1969.
Siam Cultural Park
Location : Bang Phae County, Ratchaburi Province (100 km west of Bangkok)
Information-Tel. 0 3238 1401-2
Duration of visit -About half day
Open -Daily, 08.00 - 17.00 hrs.
Accessibility-Daily coach service from Southern Bus Terminal and train service from Hua Lamphong and Bangkok Noi Stations

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