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The Life of Luang Phor Jong: Birth, Death, Stillness

The Life of Luang Phor Jong: Birth, Death, Stillness

Luang Phor Jong Phutthatsaro

of Wat Natangnok, Ayutthaya Province; Renowned
Phra Geji Ajarn During King Rama 5 Reign

 

Luang Phor Jong was known as a spiritual tutor who had achieved a high level in both Paññā

and Abhiññā
, both from knowledge as well as the sustained practice of meditation, scriptural studies and wicha.

 

He was well known for his ability to bend the laws of reality, not unlike the famed Luang Phor Sook

of Wat Makhamtao
. Even though his mind had reached impressive levels of Iddhividha
, his physical body succumbed to the ravages of age and he eventually passed on, leaving behind a legacy that sees him equally-renowned today as he was in his time.

 

Decades have gone by and still, he is fondly remembered for his contributions to the pursuit of the Dhamma, through his lessons on compassion, his exhortations, and perhaps most importantly, his miracles and amulets.

 

Luang Phor Jong biography

Luang Phor Jong Putthatsaro, formerly known as “Jong”, was born in a family of farmers in Nar Mai

Sub-district, Bang Sai
District, Phra Nakhon Si Ayutthaya
Province. His father was named Mr. Yod
, his mother was named Mrs. Khlib
, and he had two other siblings.
  1. Luang Por Jong Putthasaro, the eldest son, was known simply as “Jong”.
  2. The second child, who came to be known later as Phra Athikarn Nin
    , the Abbot of Wat Natangnai
    , was named “ Nin”
    ,
  3. The youngest was a girl named Plik
    .

Due to the poor records- practices of the era, Luang Phor Jong’s exact birth date remains a mystery, but several sources place it as Thursday, 6th of March, B.E. 2415 during the early reign of King Rama V of the Chakri

Dynasty.

 

Unlucky childhood

Luang Phor Jong’s childhood was fraught with misfortune, yet he faced it all with the cheerful naivete of youth. He suffered from ill-health throughout his childhood, leading him to appear quite frail and pale, in stark contrast to the usual resilience of rural children.

To make matters worse, he also suffered from acute tinnitus, rendering him unable to distinguish sounds, and clinically deaf at times. His eyes also suffered from cataracts, which clouded his vision and greatly diminished it.

Because of these handicaps, his reflexes and motor-neuron skills were underdeveloped. This led him to live a childhood of isolation, as he was unable to keep up with the other children.

One trait, however, was apparent in Young Jong; his love of temples. He would spend most of his time there, sometimes even in defiance of his parents’ wishes.

 

Wish Fulfilled

When he was around 12, young Jong’s parents finally relented, having observed his affinity for temples since a young age. They asked if he would like to be ordained as a monk, to which he readily accepted. They gave him their blessings.

Young Jong was ordained as a novice monk at Wat Natangnok, which was the nearest temple to his house. Upon his ordainment, the first of many miracles in his life happened. His various ailments magically dissipated, leaving the young monk as happy and healthy as his peers. The young Sammanen (Novice monk) took this as a sign that he was meant to reject the mundane trappings of a normal existence, and dedicate himself to a life lived in saffron robes.

At the age of 21, when he was qualified to be fully ordained as a Phra Song (fully ordained monk) in B.E, 2435, his parents arranged for his ordination to be carried out at Wat Natangnok. His presiding preceptor was Luang Por Soon

of Wat Bang Pla Mo
. Phra Ajarn In (Abbot) and Phra Ajarn Pho
(Vice Abbot), of Wat Natangnok at that time, presided as his 1st and 2nd Announcing Teachers. He was given the Dhamma name “Putthatsaro Phikkhu
“.

Apprentice of Sorcery

Upon entering the monastic life, Phra Jong made a speedy recovery in his health. His miraculous recovery stunned all who knew him. In their minds, he was always a sickly, frail child, and his sudden glow of health was unbelievable to most. Even more unbelievable, was his seemingly effortless prowess in the spiritual arts. While studying the Monastic Code and the Buddhist teachings in both Thai and Khmer scripts, it was clear that he was able to read, recite, and comprehend the subject matter with an almost prodigious natural ability.

Phra Ajarn Pho quickly recognized his talent, and took him under his wing, further tutoring him in arcane knowledge. Phra Jong proved to be a  quick learner, and in a short while, his skills were almost on par with his Master’s. Like a sponge, Phra Jong absorbed everything that was taught to him, until his master had nothing left to teach.

 

The Search for More Knowledge

His thirst for knowledge unsatiated, Phra Jong began to search for more beyond the confines of the temple. He would seek out any master with new knowledge, and ask for their tutelage. As long as their arts did not contradict his monastic code of discipline, LP would doggedly ignore all risks and obstacles standing between him and his acquisition of knowledge.

He would always return triumphant and newly-acquired skills. In one well-known instance, he sought out Luang Phor Pun of Wat Pikul

, a renowned meditation teacher of that era. Convincing Luang Phor Pan to accept him as a student was no easy feat, and Luang Phor Jong was put through a battery of gruelling tests to prove his worthiness. However, Phra Jong was able to move the Teacher with his sincerity and perseverance, and he eventually agreed to impart his valuable knowledge to him.

 

Ascending the Position of Abbot

Phra Jong was able to settle comfortably into a life of celibacy, as is expected of all monks. Dedicating his time to the accumulation of merit and cosmic energies, without the influence of mundane distractions, he became profoundly knowledgeable, and lived the Buddhist truths he came to internalize through the practice of meditation, applying his wisdom to the pursuit of peace and freedom from suffering. Despite all this, he found the time to develop a prodigious mastery of sorcery as well. His masters were all immensely proud of him, perhaps none more so than his first tutor in the arcane arts, Phra Ajarn Pho.

Applying his knowledge towards the secular world, Phra Jong was able to alleviate other people’s suffering through his calm demeanour, the boundless wisdom of his Buddhist teachings, and the judicious application of wicha

. As a result, he was respected by both kith and kin. He was later unanimously appointed the Zhao Awat of Wat Natangnok, after the demise of Luang Phor In, even though Phra Ajarn Pho, the Vice Abbot, was next in line. This made Phra Ajarn Pho even more proud of his student’s achievements.

 

Luang Phor Jong: His Temperament

After ascending to the post of Abbot, people began to address him as Luang Phor Jong. Despite his status and strict adherence to his monastic vows, he was hardly an unapproachable figure. He would humbly accept all invitations for visits (such visits are commonplace, as it is deemed extremely auspicious to share the presence of a decorated monk on your premises, their aura bringing good tidings and luck, and helping to alleviate any negative energies pervading a space), as well as offerings of food. He was always prepared to go the distance to visit his devotees, regardless of distance or personal inconvenience.

Luang Phor Jong was authoritative, yet gentle and caring. Though towering in skill, there were many facets of his personality that cemented the adulation of both his devotees and people who met him alike;

  1. Kindness. Luang Por Jong not only taught people to be kind, but he exemplified it himself. He never said no to anyone in need, oftentimes at significant personal expense or inconvenience.
  2. Patience. Luang Phor Jong welcomed visitors and requests at all hours of the day, never once showing any signs of fatigue or disinterest.
  3. Generosity. Luang Phor Jong was fond of donating nearly everything he came into possession of, happy to trade them for smiles on the recipients’ faces.

These qualities would come to define him through the course of his entire life.

 

Two Kalyāṇa-mitta

Luang Phor was known for his outstanding focus, which he exemplified through his supernatural feats. His impressive mental fortitude was the result of tutelage by Luang Por Soon of Wat Bang Pla Mor

, Bang Ban
District and Luang Phor Pun
of Wat Pikul
, who also happened to train Luang Phor Parn
of Wat Bang Nom Kho
. Because of this affiliation, both men considered each other kalyāṇa-mitta (noble friends).

 

Luang Phor Parn of Wat Bang Nom Kho would urge his devotees to consult Luang Phor Jong whenever the master was not in the temple, as he expounded that Luang Phor Jong had the wisdom to teach the deities, and it would be considered their great fortune to be able to learn from him.

 

Luang Phor Jong’s Most Powerful Spells

Luang Phor Jong is widely renowned for 3 types of spells;

  1. Invulnerability.
  2. Mercy and Kindness from others.
  3. Blessed Holy Water.

Luang Phor Jong’s Most Famous Amulets

1. Suer Yant Daeng

– His talisman shirts are very famous. During the outbreak of the Indochine war, he crafted these shirts and handed them out freely to soldiers bound for the battlefield, where they would be protected. These shirts remained in use and continued to craft right through World War II. Because of the renown of his shirts, requests for more of them began to pour into the temple on a near-constant basis as his fame continued to spread.

See Also

2. Phayant Singh Maha Amnart

Luang Phor Jong began crafting these cloth talismans during World War II, and continued to do so for a long time. They imbued a bearer with courage and good fortune, and protected rendered them invulnerable to danger.

3. Phanyant Phimduaykradatsongsee

– An amulet in the image of Luang Phor in yellow robes, printed on paper. These were first created in the year B.E.2490, during the construction of a Jaydee Khao Pluerk

. Luang Phor Jong crafter these as a memento for attendees. These talismans were known to bring food fortune to the people who worshipped them after, leading to their fame. Many variants of these talismans were created. This talisman became very popular post-World War II. It is also known to provide protection from fire.

 

4. Pla Taphian Ngern –Taphian Thong

; A fish talisman, usually crated in pairs, the “Male” and “Female” each inscribed with their own unique Khom

characters. Luang Phor began making these in B.E.2490. His Phla Taphian Khoo of Luang Por Jong are unique, as after consecration, the amulets themselves are said to be able to swim on their own when placed in the water by his pupils, even able to swim upstream against the current.

 

“The Brave Mind Is A Suit of Armor”

This amulet, which Luang Phor Jong imbued with a powerful form of efficaciousness, which involves invoking a very powerful animated force. He gleaned the knowledge of this process from Phra Ajarn Pho, his first teacher.

After becoming more well-acquainted with advances practices of meditation, Luang Phor Jong used this knowledge to craft these very potent Kreung Rang, which was said to be able to grant wishes to its user.

Before giving these amulets to anyone, Luang Phor was always quick to remind them to use the amulets as a force for good and to respect and maintain the Buddhist precepts.

 

Saying Goodbye

On January 14th, B.E.2508. Luang Pho Jong fell ill, and the right side of his body was paralysed. His face, however, continued to radiate calm and light. Though his disciples were panicked, and a doctor was sought from Bangkok to treat him, Luang Phor was nonplussed.

He said to his disciples;

“Let the doctor do his job, but it won’t help much this time. Don’t worry about it. Everyone will get hurt or die one day, it is inevitable. Do not obsess over illness or death, and let it affect your life.”

These were the last words of Luang Phor Jong Putthatsaro, the celebrated master, who, even at Death’s Door, saw fit to provide his pupils with some final insight into the human condition. Luang Phor slipped into unconsciousness, passing away on Makha Bucha

Day, Tuesday, 17 February B.E. 2508, at 01.55 AM, in the 15th lunar month of the 3rd year of the Dragon, during the reign of King Bhumibol Adulyadej (Rama9)

 

The significant day of his death was taken as a symbol that he had gone in peace. He was 93 years, 10 months and 17 days old, and had served as a monk for 72 years, holding the position of Abbot of Wat Natangnok 58 of those years

“Karma occurs when unwholesome causes are planted. Having karmic debts, suffering the effects of it is inevitable. If there are no unwholesome deeds planted, there will be no painful effects that follow. Devote yourself to loving-kindness. It is the best form of charity.”

Luang Phor Jong Putthatsaro Wat Nartangnok Ayutthaya.

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