Luang Phor Pheh, Wat Sawang Arom
Maker of the Peanut Amulet
His father had completed 10 Rain Retreats and subsequently disrobed to work as a civil servant. He did, however, send his children to the temple to learn the ways of Buddhism. After he retired from his job, he also returned to the Sangha, remaining there until his passing.
Young SomSong began his Primary education at a private school in the vicinity of his home called Santad Wittaya
First Encounter with Meditation
The monk had wandered from the Songkra, Ampur SaTing Phra
When Somsong first learnt meditation, he was unable to still himself. But through repeated instruction from the monk, he learnt to fully enjoy his meditation sessions. He loved it so much that he stopped playing with his friends, opting instead for the stillness of mind it brought. One day, it was time for the monk to continue his journey. Before he left, however, he taught Somsong a form of meditation called Asu Pa Gammatan
When Somsong first attempted this form of meditation, he was terrified and even nauseated by the grotesque sights he was presented with. After repeated practice, however, he came to fully grasp the impermanence of the human body. He understood that since humans have no control over anything, even their own bodies, he realized that nothing could do him more harm than his own mind.
The Journey of Knowledge
After he overcame his fear, his hunger for more knowledge, and a desire to learn the skills of wicha saiyasart grew. He continued his practice, and his parents saw that he had an inclination towards religious practices. His father decided to further school him in the art of meditation.
One day, a Thai traditional doctor named Mor SaNgiam
Sometime between the ages of 14 and 15, Somsong, decided he wanted to focus on Saiyasart. It was at this time that he picked up fortune telling. Somsong’s house was located near a red light district named Dong Kluay
His parents recognized that he had an innate talent and disposition towards these skills, and sought a proper teacher to instruct him. He honed his skills until he was famous in his hometown for reading fortunes. One day, an Indian who was skilled in the Indian methods of fortune telling taught Somsong the art of foretelling using charts. After acquiring that knowledge, he met Mor Yuak
Entering the Sangha
In B.E. 2519, at the age of 18, Luang Phor graduated from secondary school. Mor Yuak had also passed away. He decided to become a novice monk at Wat Sai and make merits for his deceased Teacher. His 1st Announcing Teacher was Luang Phor Pian
Luang Phor Pheh was impatient to advance his skills in Saiyasart, instead of meditation. Wat Tookata was famous for Saiyasart, and held plenty of Tamra for wicha. Luang Phor Pheh searched for the Samood Khoi
Luang Phor Pheh wanted badly to go on his Tudong journey, despite failing his Naktam
They travelled to Ratchaburi
Luang Phor Pheh proceeded alone to Chumporn
Thereafter, he went to see Luang Phor Kling, Wat Thaloongthong
Luang Phor Pheh once again embarked on Tudong, travelling to Wat Pradoochimplee, in Bangkok to study under Luang Phor Toh, Wat TahSung in Changwat Uthai Thani to learn from Luang Phor Lersi Lingdam
In B.E. 2522, on Sunday 13th May at Patha Sima
Before the Buddhist Lent Day in B.E. 2522, the Zhao Awat sent him to another temple, Wat Kae Theaw
After failing his 4th Buddhist exam, Luang Phor Pheh remained at Wat Tookata, studying as intensively as possible for 2 Pansa, before finally passing the exam. He was asked to return to Wat Sawang Arom, and sought permission from the Zhao Awat to occupy the position of Zhao Awat
It is required by Buddhist law in Thailand to complete 5 Pansa before being qualified to assume the position of Zhao Awat. The committee in Wat Sawang Arom decided to instead place him in another position, RakSahGarn Tan Zhao Awat Wat Sawang Arom
Wat Sawang Arom had always been intended as a temporary stopover point for monks. The facilities in the temple were threadbare. There were only 2 living quarters for the monks. There was no toilet, no incense sticks and no cutlery.
On the Buddhist Lent Day in B.E. 2524, only 4 to 5 people came for blessings, as it was an important Buddhist day, many felt that they would participate in blessing ceremonies in large temples. To make matters worse, many believed that Luang Phor Pheh would only stay for a short time, and then leave (like what happened in B.E. 2522).
Luang Phor Pheh poured significant thought into refurbishing the temple, in order to attract more devotees. His first decision was to allow people to become monks without paying requisites. A total of 20 people came for the ordination. These 20 monks stayed in the monkhood for that entire year. As more people frequented the temple, funds started flowing in, and Luang Phor Pheh was able to fully refurbish the temple. This practice of carrying out free ordination for willing monks endures to this day.
The committee of the temple agreed to pool money to build a Hor Rakhang
Making of Amulets
Luang Phor Pheh learnt the knowledge of Phithi Arb Namman Wan
Next the oil needs to be blessed by guru monks for 3 or 7 nights, depending on the size and scale of the ceremony. The monks will also procure holy items such as takrut
Because of his extended years of austere practices undertaken during his Tudong travels, Luang Phor Pheh’s health has been waning over the years, and he has sought to pass the knowledge of this wicha down to other temples. As the health of the Presiding monk is of utmost importance in the ceremony, he is unable to perform this ceremony anymore but does not want this wicha to go extinct.
Each weekend, Wat Sawang Arom is packed with devotees. In B.E. 2551, an incident occurred that increased his fame overseas. He gave 5-segmented peanut to a Malaysian named Lit Han, and a Singaporean named Ho Kee Wong. It was said that their lives and luck improved dramatically, even extending to winning at the casinos. Another businessman in the construction sector, named Lee Yan, has become bankrupt at age 55. He sought the help of Luang Phor Pheh, who gave him a similar peanut. He brought it home and prayed with it, and witnessed his business miraculously take a turn for the better. This has thus become Luang Phor Pheh’s signature amulet in recent years.