Sunday, October 4, 2009

Ghandi's 140th Anniversary

This blog is a Buddhism and Dhamma blog - Dhamma does not mean Buddhist. The Dhamma and the practise of Dhamma can apply to anyone of any Religion.

Mahatma Gandhi

It was the 140th anniversary of the birth of Mahatma Gandhi. Gandhi would be 140 years old now, if he had not been assassinated in 1948.Gandhi may not be physically here with us anymore but his legacy and his message lives on.He has always been a great example of Ahimsa and Humility, and lived a life within the Dhamma giving an example to all Humans of how to live without harming others - The importanc e of the lessons which Mahatma Gand
hi had to teach us in terms of Buddhist practise is this; If we are to attain many of the abilities and conditions necessary for us to become Enlightened, enter Nibbana and be released from the endless cycle of rebirth, then as a first pre requisite to those attainments, on must have firm practise in keeping the Moral Precepts.
Mahatma Gand
his' life was permeated by his maintaining of his Moral precepts of not lying, stealing, killing or hurting other beings, etc.
If we cannot keep such precepts well, then it is pointless to attain the many factors and levels of psychic and spiritual wisdom, Jhanas powers etc. In Buddhist Vipassana practise, one cannot enter Nibbana without contemplation of the various 40 aspects of Kammathana meditation and subsequent realisation of the truths that are contained and to be found therein.
So the example of Mahatma Gand
hi's life is to show us that we must master our own hearts and minds in not hating, cheating or abusing others in any way; be it for selfish reasons or not.
If we can practise this in our lives, then that is the base for beginning any higher forms of meditational and consciousness related advancements.

What i mean by all this, is that even if you are a Buddhist and hold to the teachings of a realised master or even the Buddhist Suttas, Jhana Meditation, Vipassana etc, it doesn't mean that a non-Buddhist such as Gand
hi (who is a Hindu) cannot be seen as a Dhamma master with a teaching for us. If any one of us can say with our dying breath that we lived such as Gandhi,, then we will surely be able to die peacefully contented in knowing we have woven no webs of negative Karma in harming others, and have kept our precepts. The clear conscience brings ease to the mind and it becomes easy to meditate with stilled thought. This is the base for beginning one's higher forms of practise in attaining the self realized knowledge of the world and "Waking Up"
Look to Gand
hi as an example, and keep the precepts, for they will protect you in doing so

The 4 Jhanas

The Jhanas and the practise of Jhana Access Meditation techniques is in the present day rather largely misunderstood and has grown to be less promoted as a path of practise in many Buddhist lineages. However, the Suttas display evidence of the Lord Buddha repeatedly mentioning and recommending the use of Jhana Absorbtion meditation methods as an access route to Nibbana. To Explain the Jhanas in their basic conceptual meaning, I find there is till now no better teaching to recommend for those seeking an understanding of what Jhana Meditation is, and what it entails in order to be able to practise this form of mental absorbtion method, than that of Henepola Gunaratana (Lovingly known by his devotees as "Bhante G"), of the Bhavana Society
You can read his concise and easy to grasp explanation here; The Jhanas - Henepola Gunaratana

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Four Infallible and Noble Truths

The Four Noble Truths;
1. Life consists of suffering. The first Noble Truth

2.The Root of suffering is Attachment. The second Noble Truth

3. The End of all suffering is attainable. The third Noble Truth

( If there is a beginning to suffering, then there must be an End to that suffering, and therefore a Way to End the Suffering. )

4. There is a Path to the End of all Suffering, and that Path is the Dharma. The fourth Noble Truth

1. Life is Suffering/Unsatisfactory (Dhukka).

To live is to suffer countless forms of pain, anguish, fear, and physical torments,as well as psychological maladies and emotional discomforts. One reason for this is because the nature of incarnate life is not perfect and neither is the world we live in. During our lives, we unavoidably must endure physical sufferings such as body pains, sicknesses, injuries, fatigue, old age, and eventually death; Also, there are many disagreeable psychological forms of Suffering, like Sadness, Fear, Frustration, Disappointment, and Depression.
Although there are different levels of Dhukka and there are also pleasurable experiences whilst living, which we generally like to perceive as the opposite of suffering. Conceptual abstractions such as Ease, Comfort and Happiness, for example, are seen as opposing extremes to Displeasure. Life in its Complexity is Utterly imperfect and incomplete, because our world, and every Living Being in it are subject to Impermanence.Impermanence means we are never able to keep permanent hold of the things that we strive for, even as we enjoy pleasurable moments, the sadness and maladies of misfortunes to come are looming, and even we ourselves and our loved ones will have to pass on and leave this body and life behind.

2. There is an Origin to suffering (Samutaya).

The Origin of suffering is attachment to transient things and the ignorance thereof. Transient things do not only include the physical objects that surround us, but also ideas, expectations, feelingsm and all objects of our perception. Ignorance is the lack of understanding of how our mind is attached to impermanent things. The reasons for suffering are desire, passion, ardour, pursuit of wealth and prestige, striving for fame and popularity, or in short: craving and clinging. Because the objects of our attachment are transient, their loss is inevitable, thus suffering will necessarily follow. Objects of attachment also include the idea of a "self" which is a delusion, because there is no abiding self. What we call "self" is just an imagined entity, and we are merely a part of the ceaseless becoming of the universe. The end of suffering comes through non attachment.

3. The End of Suffering is attainable (Nirodha).

The cessation of suffering can be attained through Nirodha. Nirodha means the unmaking of sensual craving and conceptual attachment. The third noble truth expresses the idea that suffering can be ended by attaining dispassion. Nirodha extinguishes all forms of clinging and attachment. This means that suffering can be overcome through human activity, simply by removing the cause of suffering. Attaining and perfecting dispassion is a process of many levels that ultimately results in the state of Nirvana. Nirvana means freedom from all worries, troubles, complexes, fabrications and ideas. Nirvana is not comprehensible for those who have not attained it.

4. The path to the cessation of suffering (Maggha).

There is a path to the end of suffering - a gradual path of self-improvement, which is described more detailed in the Eightfold Path. It is the middle way between the two extremes of excessive self-indulgence (hedonism) and excessive self-mortification (asceticism); and it leads to the end of the cycle of rebirth. The latter quality discerns it from other paths which are merely "wandering on the wheel of becoming", because these do not have a final object. The path to the end of suffering can extend over many lifetimes, throughout which every individual rebirth is subject to karmic conditioning. Craving, ignorance, delusions, and its effects will disappear gradually, as progress is made on the path.
Source; Dharmathai Buddhism Portal

The Life of Buddha and his Enlightenment

Thursday, May 28, 2009

The right for women to Ordain into the Sangha

The below playlist from my You Tube Account demonstrates many facts on a cause which i wish to be dealt with in a serious and correct manner, due to the fact that the Buddha already made very clear statements on this issue. The refusal of the Sangha (especially in Thailand) to recognize the rights of women to be able to ordain as Bhikkhuni sangha is i believe, a serious offence against Buddhas decree.
Spread the word please.

Ordaining as a Bhikkhu in Thailand

Video clips (Playlist) from my Ordination ceremony at Wat Sri Bun Rueang in bang Kapi, bangkok Thailand. This was a single ordination ceremony which was quite difficult as there was no others by my side to help in giving each other cues in the chanting process.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Life of Buddha

Life of Buddha (Documentary Video)
Scientists believe to have a great deal of evidence pointing to the truth of Buddha's existence many interesting facts pointing to the existence of Buddha, as well as a very good general overview of Buddha's life and the origins of Buddhism are presented in this documentary video.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Ordination as a Bhikkhu

My Ordination as a Bhikkhu in bangkok, Thailand

I am delighted to announce my ordination as a Buddhist monk (Bhikkhu). on the 14th of May 2009, i was ordained by a company of 20 Bhikkhus in the chapel at Wat Sri Bun Rueang in bang Kapi, Bangkok, Thailand at 12:30 pm
you can see fotos of my ordination on the hubpages blog or the dharmathai portal dhamma blog
Jarern Porn - blessings to all of you and may you all prosper in your practise of the Dhamma.
Chinawangso Bhikkhu

Friday, April 24, 2009

Arahants on the Internet?

Many people think that an Arahant would never be seen doing normal run of the mill evryday things like watching tv, surfing the internet or reading the daily news in the paper..
the videoclip below explains how this may perhaps be possible, and for what reasons;

Do Arahants need to watch the news?

I admire the contemplative manner in which the venerable Gavesako attempts to clear up these questions

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Unhooking yourself (Shenpa)

The below article was found on shambala sun - i republish here because i find it extremely synonymous with Thai Vipassana Kammathana practise. The teaching is Mahayana/Vajrayana and is given by a western Yeshe; Pema Chodron.

"Shenpa is the urge, the hook, that triggers our habitual tendency to close down. We get hooked in that moment of tightening when we reach for relief. To get unhooked we begin by recognizing that moment of unease and learn to relax in that moment.

You're trying to make a point with a coworker or your partner. At one moment her face is open and she's listening, and at the next, her eyes cloud over or her jaw tenses. What is it that you're seeing?

Someone criticizes you. They criticize your work or your appearance or your child. At moments like that, what is it you feel? It has a familiar taste in your mouth, it has a familiar smell. Once you begin to notice it, you feel like this experience has been happening forever.

The Tibetan word for this is shenpa. It is usually translated 'attachment,' but a more descriptive translation might be 'hooked.' When shenpa hooks us, we're likely to get stuck. We could call shenpa 'that sticky feeling.' It's an everyday experience. Even a spot on your new sweater can take you there. At the subtlest level, we feel a tightening, a tensing, a sense of closing down. Then we feel a sense of withdrawing, not wanting to be where we are. That's the hooked quality. That tight feeling has the power to hook us into self-denigration, blame, anger, jealousy and other emotions which lead to words and actions that end up poisoning us.

Pema Chodron - Working with Shenpa (Getting Hooked) in Meditation

Remember the fairy tale in which toads hop out of the princess's mouth whenever she starts to say mean words? That's how being hooked can feel. Yet we don't stop—we can't stop—because we're in the habit of associating whatever we're doing with relief from our own discomfort. This is the shenpa syndrome. The word 'attachment' doesn't quite translate what's happening. It's a quality of experience that's not easy to describe but which everyone knows well. Shenpa is usually involuntary and it gets right to the root of why we suffer.

Someone looks at us in a certain way, or we hear a certain song, we smell a certain smell, we walk into a certain room and boom. The feeling has nothing to do with the present, and nevertheless, there it is. When we were practicing recognizing shenpa at Gampo Abbey, we discovered that some of us could feel it even when a particular person simply sat down next to us at the dining table.

Shenpa thrives on the underlying insecurity of living in a world that is always changing. We experience this insecurity as a background of slight unease or restlessness. We all want some kind of relief from that unease, so we turn to what we enjoy—food, alcohol, drugs, sex, work or shopping. In moderation what we enjoy might be very delightful. We can appreciate its taste and its presence in our life. But when we empower it with the idea that it will bring us comfort, that it will remove our unease, we get hooked.

So we could also call shenpa 'the urge'—the urge to smoke that cigarette, to overeat, to have another drink, to indulge our addiction whatever it is. Sometimes shenpa is so strong that we're willing to die getting this short-term symptomatic relief. The momentum behind the urge is so strong that we never pull out of the habitual pattern of turning to poison for comfort. It doesn't necessarily have to involve a substance; it can be saying mean things, or approaching everything with a critical mind. That's a major hook. Something triggers an old pattern we'd rather not feel, and we tighten up and hook into criticizing or complaining. It gives us a puffed-up satisfaction and a feeling of control that provides short-term relief from uneasiness.

Those of us with strong addictions know that working with habitual patterns begins with the willingness to fully acknowledge our urge, and then the willingness not to act on it. This business of not acting out is called refraining. Traditionally it's called renunciation. What we renounce or refrain from isn't food, sex, work or relationships per se. We renounce and refrain from the shenpa. When we talk about refraining from the shenpa, we're not talking about trying to cast it out; we're talking about trying to see the shenpa clearly and experiencing it. If we can see shenpa just as we're starting to close down, when we feel the tightening, there's the possibility of catching the urge to do the habitual thing, and not doing it.

Without meditation practice, this is almost impossible to do. Generally speaking, we don't catch the tightening until we've indulged the urge to scratch our itch in some habitual way. And unless we equate refraining with loving-kindness and friendliness towards ourselves, refraining feels like putting on a straitjacket. We struggle against it. The Tibetan word for renunciation is shenlok, which means turning shenpa upside-down, shaking it up. When we feel the tightening, somehow we have to know how to open up the space without getting hooked into our habitual pattern.

In practicing with shenpa, first we try to recognize it. The best place to do this is on the meditation cushion. Sitting practice teaches us how to open and relax to whatever arises, without picking and choosing. It teaches us to experience the uneasiness and the urge fully, and to interrupt the momentum that usually follows. We do this by not following after the thoughts and learning to come back to the present moment. We learn to stay with the uneasiness, the tightening, the itch of shenpa. We train in sitting still with our desire to scratch. This is how we learn to stop the chain reaction of habitual patterns that otherwise will rule our lives. This is how we weaken the patterns that keep us hooked into discomfort that we mistake as comfort. We label the spinoff 'thinking' and return to the present moment. Yet even in meditation, we experience shenpa.

Let's say, for example, that in meditation you felt settled and open. Thoughts came and went, but they didn't hook you. They were like clouds in the sky that dissolved when you acknowledged them. You were able to return to the moment without a sense of struggle. Afterwards, you're hooked on that very pleasant experience: 'I did it right, I got it right. That's how it should always be, that's the model.' Getting caught like that builds arrogance, and conversely it builds poverty, because your next session is nothing like that. In fact, your 'bad' session is even worse now because you're hooked on the 'good' one. You sat there and you were discursive: you were obsessing about something at home, at work. You worried and you fretted; you got caught up in fear or anger. At the end of the session, you feel discouraged—it was 'bad,' and there's only you to blame.

Is there something inherently wrong or right with either meditation experience? Only the shenpa. The shenpa we feel toward 'good' meditation hooks us into how it's 'supposed' to be, and that sets us up for shenpa towards how it's not 'supposed' to be. Yet the meditation is just what it is. We get caught in our idea of it: that's the shenpa. That stickiness is the root shenpa. We call it ego-clinging or self-absorption. When we're hooked on the idea of good experience, self-absorption gets stronger; when we're hooked on the idea of bad experience, self-absorption gets stronger. This is why we, as practitioners, are taught not to judge ourselves, not to get caught in good or bad.

What we really need to do is address things just as they are. Learning to recognize shenpa teaches us the meaning of not being attached to this world. Not being attached has nothing to do with this world. It has to do with shenpa—being hooked by what we associate with comfort. All we're trying to do is not to feel our uneasiness. But when we do this we never get to the root of practice. The root is experiencing the itch as well as the urge to scratch, and then not acting it out.

If we're willing to practice this way over time, prajna begins to kick in. Prajna is clear seeing. It's our innate intelligence, our wisdom. With prajna, we begin to see the whole chain reaction clearly. As we practice, this wisdom becomes a stronger force than shenpa. That in itself has the power to stop the chain reaction.

Prajna isn't ego-involved. It's wisdom found in basic goodness, openness, equanimity—which cuts through self-absorption. With prajna we can see what will open up space. Habituation, which is ego-based, is just the opposite—a compulsion to fill up space in our own particular style. Some of us close space by hammering our point through; others do it by trying to smooth the waters.

We're taught that whatever arises is fresh, the essence of realization. That's the basic view. But how do we see whatever arises as the essence of realization when the fact of the matter is, we have work to do? The key is to look into shenpa. The work we have to do is about coming to know that we're tensing or hooked or 'all worked up.' That's the essence of realization. The earlier we catch it, the easier shenpa is to work with, but even catching it when we're already all worked up is good. Sometimes we have to go through the whole cycle even though we see what we're doing. The urge is so strong, the hook so sharp, the habitual pattern so sticky, that there are times when we can't do anything about it.

There is something we can do after the fact, however. We can go sit on the meditation cushion and re-run the story. Maybe we start with remembering the all-worked-up feeling and get in touch with that. We look clearly at the shenpa in retrospect; this is very helpful. It's also helpful to see shenpa arising in little ways, where the hook is not so sharp.

Buddhists are talking about shenpa when they say, 'Don't get caught in the content: observe the underlying quality—the clinging, the desire, the attachment.' Sitting meditation teaches us how to see that tangent before we go off on it. It basically comes down to the instruction, 'label it thinking.' To train in this on the cushion, where it's relatively easy and pleasant to do, is how we can prepare ourselves to stay when we get all worked up.

Then we can train in seeing shenpa wherever we are. Say something to another person and maybe you'll feel that tensing. Rather than get caught in a story line about how right you are or how wrong you are, take it as an opportunity to be present with the hooked quality. Use it as an opportunity to stay with the tightness without acting upon it. Let that training be your base.

You can also practice recognizing shenpa out in nature. Practice sitting still and catching the moment when you close down. Or practice in a crowd, watching one person at a time. When you're silent, what hooks you is mental dialogue. You talk to yourself about badness or goodness: me-bad or they-bad, this-right or that-wrong. Just to see this is a practice. You'll be intrigued by how you'll involuntarily shut down and get hooked, one way or another. Just keep labeling those thoughts and come back to the immediacy of the feeling. That's how not to follow the chain reaction.

Once we're aware of shenpa, we begin to notice it in other people. We see them shutting down. We see that they've been hooked and that nothing is going to get through to them now. At that moment we have prajna. That basic intelligence comes through when we're not caught up in escaping from our own unease. With prajna we can see what's happening with others; we can see when they've been hooked. Then we can give the situation some space. One way to do that is by opening up the space on the spot, through meditation. Be quiet and place your mind on your breath. Hold your mind in place with great openness and curiosity toward the other person. Asking a question is another way of creating space around that sticky feeling. So is postponing your discussion to another time.

At the abbey, we're very fortunate that everybody is excited about working with shenpa. So many words I've tried using become ammunition that people use against themselves. But we feel some kind of gladness about working with shenpa, perhaps because the word is unfamiliar. We can acknowledge what's happening with clear seeing, without aiming it at ourselves. Since no one particularly likes to have his shenpa pointed out, people at the Abbey make deals like, 'When you see me getting hooked, just pull your earlobe, and if I see you getting hooked, I'll do the same. Or if you see it in yourself, and I'm not picking up on it, at least give some little sign that maybe this isn't the time to continue this discussion.' This is how we help each other cultivate prajna, clear seeing.

We could think of this whole process in terms of four R’s: recognizing the shenpa, refraining from scratching, relaxing into the underlying urge to scratch and then resolving to continue to interrupt our habitual patterns like this for the rest of our lives. What do you do when you don't do the habitual thing? You're left with your urge. That's how you become more in touch with the craving and the wanting to move away. You learn to relax with it. Then you resolve to keep practicing this way.

Working with shenpa softens us up. Once we see how we get hooked and how we get swept along by the momentum, there's no way to be arrogant. The trick is to keep seeing. Don't let the softening and humility turn into self-denigration. That's just another hook. Because we've been strengthening the whole habituated situation for a long, long time, we can't expect to undo it overnight. It's not a one-shot deal. It takes loving-kindness to recognize; it takes practice to refrain; it takes willingness to relax; it takes determination to keep training this way. It helps to remember that we may experience two billion kinds of itches and seven quadrillion types of scratching, but there is really only one root shenpa—ego-clinging. We experience it as tightening and self-absorption. It has degrees of intensity. The branch shenpas are all our different styles of scratching that itch.

I recently saw a cartoon of three fish swimming around a hook. One fish is saying to the other, 'The secret is non-attachment.' That's a shenpa cartoon: the secret is—don't bite that hook. If we can catch ourselves at that place where the urge to bite is strong, we can at least get a bigger perspective on what's happening. As we practice this way, we gain confidence in our own wisdom. It begins to guide us toward the fundamental aspect of our being—spaciousness, warmth and spontaneity.

Pema Chödrön is a fully-ordained Buddhist nun and the resident teacher at Gampo Abbey in Cape Breton, Nova Scotia. She is the author of The Wisdom of No Escape, Start Where You Are, When Things Fall Apart, The Places That Scare You, and Comfortable With Uncertainty, published by Shambhala Publications."
Info source
Shambala Sun

Friday, March 27, 2009

Master Day at Ajarn Noo Ganpai's

Thursday the 30th of April is the day this year for Wai Kroo ceremony at Thai brahmin Buddhist Tattoo master Ajarn Noo Ganpai's;
You can fone one of the following numbers for details
02-975-2799 | 089-144-9456 | 089-484-2999
081-375-1469 | 089-817-4236
Up to 14 Geji Monks will be present to increment their magic to the ceremony.
nThe ceremony is held at the Samnak of Ajarn Noo Ganpai
wear white if you can and keep 5 precepts.

Sak Yant Buddhist Temple Tattoos

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Lord Ganesh in Thai Buddhism

How ganesha got his Elephant’s head
Lord Ganesha is said to have been the son of Parvati and Shiva, but there are differing sources, some of them indicate different origins. His task in life was to guard his mother and once while doing so he foolishly failed to recognize Shiva himself who had come seeking his consort. Trying to defend his mother’s bath, Lord Ganesha was beheaded by Shiva who later was persuaded by Parvati to revive him. He promised Lord Ganesha that he should have the head of the first creature who happened along. An elephant was the first animal which was able to be found. Elephants are considered to be the wisest of all animals, so Shiva took it’s head and used it to replace the missing head of Lord Ganesh.

In the Shiva Purana the story goes as follows - while his mother Parvati wanted to take a bath, there were no attendants around to guard her and stop anyone from accidentally entering the house. Hence she created an image of a boy out of turmeric paste which she prepared to cleanse her body (turmeric was used for its antiseptic and cooling properties), and infused life into it, and thus Ganesha was born. Parvati ordered Ganesha not to allow anyone to enter the house, and Ganesha obediently followed his mother’s orders. After a while Shiva returned from outside, and as he tried to enter the house, Ganesha stopped him. Shiva was infuriated at this strange little boy who dared to challenge him. He told Ganesha that he was Parvati’s husband, and demanded that Ganesha let him go in. But Ganesha would not hear any person’s word other than his dear mother’s. Shiva lost his patience and had a fierce battle with Ganesha. At last he severed Ganesha’s head with his trishula. When Parvati came out and saw her son’s lifeless body, she was very angry and sad. She demanded that Shiva restore Ganesha’s life at once.


Unfortunately, Shiva’s trishula was so powerful that it had hurled Ganesha’s head very far off. All attempts to find the head were in vain. As a last resort, Shiva approached Brahma who suggested that he replace Ganesha’s head with the first living being that came his way which lay with its head facing north. Shiva then sent his celestial armies (Gana) to find and take the head of whatever creature they happened to find asleep with its head facing north. They found a dying elephant which slept in this manner, and after its death took its head, attaching the elephant’s head to Ganesha’s body and bringing him back to life. From then on, he was called Ganapathi, head of the celestial armies, and was to be worshipped by everyone before beginning any activity.

ไทยพราหมณ์ Brahminism in Thailand: "How ganesha got his Elephant’s head

Saturday, March 14, 2009

This is the Happiness of the Buddha

Ajahn Chah is perhaps my greatest of all the teachers i know, along with Luang Dta Maha Bua and Thanissaro Bhikkhu - for those who wish to seriously attempt the letting go of all desire and attainment of Nirvana, this is the introduction you need, as well as giving a glimpse into the lifestly of the most diligent of all Buddhist traditons of practise - the kammatthana forest tradition

Synopsis of the Present age (ramblings of a Hippie Chick)

I love this interpretation of the present time which i found in the headline of a blog i found today whilst surfing around;

Kali Yuga: the "Dark Age" lasting 432,000 years...when avarice and wrath are common, rulers become unreasonable, cowards have the reputation of bravery and the brave are called cowards...and lies are passed out as truth

Link to Blog
Ageless Hippie Chick

A Bowl of Stupid - admitting one's mistakes to overcome clinging to Atta

I learnt a great lesson in Humility and about the fact that we so easily fall into the trap of Atta (the concept opf a permanent malleable self), and think that things are ours - this can cause us to make mistakes and even offend people by becoming too posessive over what we consider to be "ours", as well as causing lack of humility and an overzealous self defensiveness..
I made a completely Unenlightened "Faux pas" on somebody elses blog about using material from one of my other websites which cased the owner to react in a very offensive and hateful manner, not only did i cause him to lose his composure , i also succeeded in making us both look like a pair of idiots. Luckily i remembered my Dhamma teachings and managed to overcome my natural sense of feeling offended by his words and managed to not fall into the trap of defending myself with a return attack. Although he was offensive to me he was right about many points he made. I decided that the best way to reverse my Karma and also to purify my consciousness of the impurity of anger and self cherishing, was to admit my mistakes and recognize the feelings of others.
Below is the post he made on his blog and the subsequent barrage of comments between the both of us.

To summarize; It is possible for us to alchemize our feelings if we can overcome the feeling to always protect ourselves and be defensive when we feel either accused or that we have been caught out making a mistake. The sooner we admit things to ourselves, the sooner we can transform the negative into positive.

A Bowl of Stupid » Tattoo You — The Sacred Art of Sak Yant, Part Whatever …: "Tattoo You — The Sacred Art of Sak Yant, Part Whatever …

Published by A Bowl Of Stupid at 6:46 pm under History, Educational Material, Video, Thailand, bangkok, tattoo

(Yours truly — sporting the latest)

สักยันต์ - Sak Yant; Sak - meaning 'to tap' or, 'to tattoo', and Yant, meaning 'Yantra'. Originally derived from the Sanskrit word 'YANTRA'.

Through some sort of Google 'search engine magic', this site — and, in particular, the posts HERE, HERE and HERE — has become some sort of pseudo-authority on the sacred Bhuddist art of 'Sak Yant' tattooing.

The bad news is that, as I stated in the comment section of one post:

Just to set the record straight, I pretty much know jack-shit about EVERYTHING.

My admitted stupidity notwithstanding, people STILL continue to be directed here by the search-engine gods in their quest for knowledge about Sak Yant. My apologies, everyone.

The good news, however, is that I too know know how to use Google to find ACTUAL authorities on the subject of Sak Yant tattoos and have posted links in my above-referenced posts to ACTUAL sak yant authories. Moreover, one of my best friends in Bangkok actually did a video piece for the Bangkok Post (see below) about Arjan Noo, one of the best know Say Yant artists in the — having given Angelina Jolie her well-publicized sak yant tattoos.

The other good news is that there has also been some faily interesting information posted by visitors in the commentary of my posts, including this latest comment by ujalakali:

I have a sak yant tattoo and I am a woman. I made a kind of pilgrimage to bkk to get it done. actually, i would have gone to anyone, but ended up at arjan noo’s to get it done in the belief that women cannot be touched by monks–which arjan noo is not.

later a westerner with plentiful sak yant told me that some bkk temples will put sak yant on women.

here is my experience:
I only have one and was not allowed to choose it. this is important! i think you often dont really get to choose. you tell them what is going on with you (i was on my way to afghanistan so i recieved the protection yant) and they give you the one that is best. also, i felt that they strongly encouraged putting the yants in the classic places. AJ’s is in the normal place for a protection tattoo. they put mine in a slightly different place. they were very clear that they were not going to do anything on my lower back, even though i didn’t ask for such a thing. this was a clear rule.

one final thing–this is for real. everything changed for me after recieving the tattoo. come correct.

This is all I really know, that which is my experience–i dont know about the other yants and dont know what the experience is for men.

i have a question if anyone knows– are there rules explicit for women? as far as i can see the rules are mostly for men, so i just try to stay on the right path as i see it. but if there are ladies rules, i would love to know them! thanks!

As I mentioned in those comments:

… it’s my understanding that the ‘rules’ on Sak Yant (in general) is that you cannot have an actual image of the holy Buddha anywhere on your body, and that the yants themselves are not to be placed anywhere beneath the waistline (which, for obvious reasons, is considered unclean — that’s also the reason monks are not allowed to touch women, as they are alleged to be unclean … sorry girls, I’m just the messenger.

That being said, I can also advise all of you fellow tattoo enthusiasts (read: freaks) that obviously Arjan Noo himself does sak yants for women (although when I went for one, he charges foreigners — 'falangs' — about US$2,000.00 per, and presumably more if you're a celebrity).

Further, there was also a Malaysian woman behind me to get inked at Wat Bang Phra when I got my first sak yant. I assume she eventually got one there, although I didn't stick around to confirm it, and it's my understanding that women there are only allowed to get 'invisible tattoos' made with vegetable oil instead of ink.

Again, what the hell do I know, right?

So for those of you still interested in more info, you can go to the appropriately named — it has just about everything you may want to know on the subject.

And who can (or want to learn to) read Thai, here's a link to Arjan Noo's website — actually, there are a bunch of links there written in English also.

Last, but not least, there's this: the VERY BEST news story you'll ever see about the subject — where my buddy, Desho Bernard of the Bangkok Post (a.k.a. Guru Bangkok), went to do a story on Arjan Noo and got tattooed instead:

That is all … freaks.

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6 Responses to “Tattoo You — The Sacred Art of Sak Yant, Part Whatever …”

# spenscr littlewoodon 01 Dec 2008 at 10:45 pm

considering the snippets you took from my website and the repeated claims of knowing authorities on sak yant, you could have been good enough to give me a link to instead of only to yourself
you are using copyright text that is of my handwriting and should post on your own merits and write your own stuff instead of copying and pasting snippets from the forums on sak yant.
Either remove my text or give me a linkback
apart from that most of the info you have given is a crock of bull and untrue in many ways.
Why cant you blog about something you know about instead of stealing peoples words and pasting them here without even crediting them for it??
regards Spencer
# A Bowl Of Stupidon 02 Dec 2008 at 7:32 am

Hey douchebag!!

Did you even read the post?

Do you even KNOW the domestic and international laws concerning the use of purportedly copywrited material on public domains (i.e., the internet)?

Did you even SEE that I said I don’t know jack-shit about sak-yant?

And most importantly, did you even see that I ALREADY POSTED A FUCKING LINK TO YOUR SHITTY SITE?!?

Learn how to fucking read ‘Spencer’. Then maybe you can come back and rant.

In the meantime, lighten the fuck up — it’s just a freaking website … douchebag.
# Rosson 15 Jan 2009 at 6:42 am

hey man just wondering what ur ink means the one under the temple its pretty cool
# B. Cidon 08 Feb 2009 at 9:43 pm

I just visited Thailand and went to Wat Bang Phra Temple for my tattoo. I am a 35 year old women and looked into it before receiving my tattoo. I did not get the invisible tattoo.

Also, the monk that does the tattoo cannot touch the skin of a woman and therefore he wears a glove while he conducts the art work of the tattoo. He also had an assistant that is able to touch the back. If he has no assistant then he cannot do tattoo on a woman. I was lucky that there was an assistant there and he was able to do the first in a series of four tattoos which is the “Temple”.

You are correct, we are not allowed to choose what and where we want the tattoo. Monk chooses for you. When he is done he does a prayer and then you finish. I only paid 200 Baht for it which is equivalent to about $6-$7 american dollars. I gave an additional 100 Baht as a contribution. They take the money as an offering with cigarettes, flowers and incense which is sold at the temple for 200 Baht. So really i spent 500 baht for the whole experience and I am very happy with it, which is about $20 us dollars for a tattoo.

So don’t be fooled. You must go to Wat Bang Phra Temple which is wear Angelina and Jon Bon Jovi got their tattoos.

It is meant for men but women can get them. It is suppose to protect you from harm and give you look in love with the opposite sex.
# spenceron 14 Mar 2009 at 8:18 am

Yes you are right about that one should lighten up
I apologize publicly
Smetimes we humans get too easily wound up and i am no exception, i obviusly jumped the gun and i am man enough to admit it.
But also you should lighten up as if it is after all only a website then you shouldnt be calling me a douchebag if you are taking things as lightly as you would like me to.
I am however not offended as i know you are only suffering a natural angry reaction to my first comment, which is quite understandable. Dochebag is howver a rather inpolite term for which im sure you have just made yourself look just as tupid as did by jumping the gun and not looking properly before i open my big stupid mouth. I feel rather embarrassed for my slip up. I wonder if you do for your extremely angry reaction and offensive/aggressive reaction.
# spenceron 14 Mar 2009 at 8:22 am

forgot to add that i wish to thank you for reminding me of what was always my principle since the beginnig and somehting that i seem to have forgotten;
Namely, my desire to promote free information for all on the internet and non-posessive sharing, that applies also to fotos. Thanks for waking me up to this fact i must have got the selfishness or jealousy mind poison in my brain somehow. How stupid of me , i have now decided to not interest myself whether my material is taken and used somewhere else on the www.
I wonder how you will react when you see somone make a blog with a large portion of your content and publish? I hope you practise what you preach - i will definitely practise what you preached to me.."

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Thai Lersi Sak Yant Master Day

Here is a slideshow of the Por Gae lersi Master Day festival in the Buddhist temple of Wat Tong Nai in Bangkok.

Wai Kroo Por Gae 2008

Friday, February 20, 2009

Tripitaka Tales 1

The Quarrelsome Birdflock
Published by Twister on 2009/2/20 (8 reads)

The story of a Hunter and a Flock of Birds - whilst the birds are living in harmony, it is impossible to catch them out, so the hunter waits for them to quarrel.

(from Sak Yantpedia's "Buddha Tales" section)

Once upon a time, in the Town of Varanasi in the time of Brahmatad there was a large flock of birds, grouped in their thousands in the forest. In that Lifetime, the Buddha was born as a bird with extraordinary cleverness. He was the leader of the flock of birds that rested in this forest. Devadhata (Buddha's greatest enemy in the life as Siddhartha) was also born at this time into the flock of birds as a rather stubborn and stupid bird.
At the same time as this, there was a hunter living in the area whose main source of income came from catching and selling birds in the forest.
His way of catching them was that of throwing a net over the birds as they were pecking the floor looking for seeds on the floor, and then tread on the net and remove each bird one by one and put them in the basket. He would then take them to be sold on the market; this was his profession with which he raised his family. The clever leader of the flock of birds knew about the hunter's activities in the area, and alwasy had counted the hunter as an enemy to be respected.

One day, the Clever bird said to the flock; "Mother and Father, brothers and sisters, You may perhaps remember or know of the hunter who is always throwing his net trying to catch us - he is our executioner! We shall have to see friends and relatives disappear and be lost to us forever because of his actions. What are we doing to prevent him from being able to catch us?

One of the birds remarked "Yes that's right! lets confer and think about this - the clever bird then suggested "I have a way that will help to save us, but i am not sure if we can accept it or not". "What method? tell us!" the birds cried out in unison. "Tell us, and we shall surely do as you suggest!" So the clever bird told the way for them to help each other be saved; As of this day, whenever the hunter was around and threw his net over them, then each bird should put his hed into the eyes of the net, and all lift the net up together at the same time.Then, flying with the net, they should fly down onto a Thorn bush, catching the net on the thorns. And there from slowly be able to drop out of the net to the ground.
"Oh what a stroke of genius!" agreed the rest of the flock with a sound of chirping; "we willsurely do as you say, and escape the clutches of the hunter's net".
The next day, the flock went out to search for food as usual, as for the hunter, he also was out in the forest doing his usual hunting rounds.
This time though, when the hunter was around, the birds would be on their toes and careful.

As the flock saw the hunter approaching, they would become extremely vigilant, and as the hunter threw the net, they remembered the instructions of the clever bird, each bird inserting his head into the net and they all flew up simultaneously and dropeed the net down on a thorny hedge. They then were able to drop down to the floor and fly away to safety. The hunter then proceeded to work disentangling the net from the thorn hedge, with the intention to continue the hunt. But by the time he had disentangled it, it was already beginning to get dark, so he made his way home. He wasn't able to retrieve even a single bird from the net - it appeared he was going to hjave to return home empty handed, with only his empty net and basket. The next day, the hunter renewed his attempts, vowing to return with a catch today.. but the result was exactly the same as the day before; when he threw his net, the birds cleverly all worked together to lift the net and leave it entangled on the thorn bushes. The hunter wasted the day disentangling his net again, and returned home empty handed once more.The hunter's wife was displeased and comlained "I haven't seen you bring anything home at all for two days already!" "Today is the same again". "Do you have someone else you are caring for and use all your money for that? why are you empty handed? you always caught plenty before?" "No no my dear, please don't be angry with me, it isn't that at all!" "In the moment the birds they are clever, they all help each other to lift my nets when i throw them, and entangle my net on the bushes to escape. Then it takes me all day to disentangle the net, and i am empty handed". "Maybe you should think about a new profession" said his wife. "The birds are more clever than the humans already - have you thought of another profession yet?" "No, i don't have to have a new profession my dear, this is a good profession already. All i have to do is wait a while until the amisty of the birds is broken, and then they will fall prey to my net!"
Not many days after the hunter had soothed his wife's anger, there occured an incident which caused the birds to argue to the point of losing thier mutual amisty. This happened when one of the birds who was flying down to look for seeds on the ground, accidentally landed with one foot on another bird's head. "Who kicked my head?", said the affected bird. "I'm sorry I'm sorry, i didn't mean to step on you" said the other bird.
continued on Yantpedia

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

New Dhamma Forums

New High class Dhamma Forums

i found a great new place for discussing the dhamma online on is a new forum so still not many visitors, but just looking at the categories and the way the topics are set up, it l;ooks like it may be going to be an extremely pleasant and interesting forum to be active in.
A nice lush greenery is applied to the graphic background -- lending a cool relaxing mood to the atmosphere of the forums.
Give it a visit and get posting!
Dhamma Forums dot com online now!

Sak Yant Temple tattoos site gets a new look

The sak yant dot com website dealing with the subject of Thai temple tattoos has now been completely updated and given a new look, to converge with it's new sister-site, the Thai Brahminism blog. The site has a new up to daye web2.o format with both website and blog sections, as well as the old faithful yantpedia galleries and articles/grimoire sections, which has articles on all sorts of matters from Buddha Magic, ceremonial rites, amulets, deities, traditions, sorcery, as well as sak yant tattooos and the 108 sacred yant archive.
Pay a visit to and see how the new site is looking.Click on the Khmer Sanskrit text banner below to visit the site.

khmer sanskrit agkara used in sak yant tattoos

Sunday, February 8, 2009

SE Asian Religion on Winksite Mobile Web

The post below is an excerpt fom my mobile winksite blog which shall be publishing on S.E.Asian matters as of now.

Brahminism in Thai Buddhist Culture

Posted by Spencer Littlewood

Brahminism is inextricably intertwined with the Buddhist Faith in Thailand; although Brahminism and Hinduism are so closely connected, they have 2 completely obverse viewpoints.
The Hinduistic Viewpoint is that of "Atta" (ann immutable transmigrating self), and Buddhism that of "Anatta" (no-Self). In actual fact, Buddhism does not recommend or profess either of these views, rather the idea that only when one has disattached oneself from any particular viewpoint - be it that of Atta or Anatta, will one be able to Enlighten oneself and see things for the way they really are (Wicha).
Whatever the arguments, Brahminism and Brahmin Ceremonial tradition is deeply ingrained in Thailand's Buddhist Culture - Even the Royal Ceremonies are always performed by the 7 last remaining Brahmin priests of the Official Thai Brahmin order.

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