LP Kamphan’s original name was Kamphan Srisuwong
Entry Into the Sangha
On September 7th, 1932, when he was 17, Kamphan Srisuwong was ordained at Wat Sri Boonrueang
“The breath serves as an important bridge between the mental, emotional and physical aspects of any living being.”
LP Kamphan also studied under the renowned meditation master for a year, and throughout his life, would constantly defer to him and his teachings as the source of his meditative prowess.
3 years after ordaining as a novice, LP Kamphan hiked to Loei
LP Kamphan remained in Loei Province for a year, before decamping to Chiang Rai, where he stayed for a further 3-4 months. After receiving news that his father had passed away, however, he returned to attend his father’s funeral, and to his old temple in Na Kae
Ordaining As A Monk
In 1935, at the age of 20 years, LP Kamphan ordained as a fully-fledged monk at Wat Phra Phutthabat Chom Thong
In 1939, when he was 24 years old, his mother passed. At that time, he had two younger sisters who were still very young and unable to fend for themselves. Heeding the call of duty, LP Kamphan left the monkhood to care for his sisters.
He was conferred the name Khosapanyo which means “the propagator of wisdom far and wide”.
On April 20, 1945, when he was 30 years old, he once again ordained as a monk at Wat Phochai
LP Kamphan continued to hone his skills at meditation, while also serving as a teacher of Tipitaka Dhamma studies at Wat Phra Phutthabat Chom Thong
He returned to settle at a Wat Pa
The Humble Beginnings of Wat That Mahachai
In 1952, he led 5 families from Baan Nong Hoi Yai, Na Kae
On Visakha Bucha
A Summary of Credentials
In 1929, Luang Phor Kamphan graduated from Grade 4 at Baan Phon Du
In 1936, at the age of 22, he graduated from Beginner Level Dhamma studies “Naktam Chantree
In 1945, at the age of 30, he graduated from Intermediate Level Dhamma Studies “Naktam Chantoh
In 1946, at the age of 31, he graduated from Advanced Level Dhamma Studies “Naktam ChanAke
A Man of Many Talents
- LP Kamphan was fluent in several archaic languages 1) Aksorn Tham; an ancient script that existed in Northeastern Thailand and Laos which was used to inscribe the doctrines of Buddhism, 2) Aksorn Tai Noi; an ancient script that existed in Northeastern Thailand and Laos, used to record ancient arcane knowledge such as herbal medicine, and 3) Khmer script.
- He was able to memorize the Patimokkhain its entirety (the 227 precepts of a full-fledged monk) and led the incantations of Patimokkha at the temple since 1947.
- He was proficient in the “interrogative-catechism” style of Buddhist preaching, and was famous throughout the Northeast of Thailand, as not many masters of the form existed in those days.
- He was an expert in Dhamma-centric poetry such as Wessantonchataka(a story of the Buddha in a past life while he is a Bodhisatta practising the baramee of giving).
- He was a great Vipassana Master in the tradition of Phra Ajarn Sao Kantasilo, Phra Ajarn Mun Phurithatto, and Phra Ajarn Fan Ajaro. He provided training in Vipassana meditation at Wat Pa MahachaiTemple (official name Wat AranyakhamTemple), which was purpose-built for him to disseminate his teachings. The temple is located in a quiet, secluded, jungle location, and remains in operation today. Meditation is still being taught today at this temple.
- He was an expert in innovative construction methods, and personally oversaw the design and construction of many Buddhist structures, including the famed Phra That Mahachaipagoda. Perhaps even more astoundingly, the temple was raised entirely by the monks and volunteers, as they did not have the budget to engage professionals.
- The crafting of white magic amulets that draw their power from divine spiritual sources, was a speciality of his.
Communing With Spirits
On August 11th, 1975; the Phra That Phanom
Many of those who sought spoils from Phra That Phanom began to experience unusual phenomena. Some began to hallucinate, and yet others began to have visions of angels and spirits (and some say Naga
LP Kamphan took it upon himself to investigate the source of the collapse. Sifting through the ruins, he found a talisman written under the base of the pagoda, which he later incorporated into his amulets. As he later recounted to a close disciple, this spell had been written in the language of the heavens, a spell he came to refer to as Phra Katha Maha Pratthana
In a Lao accent it may be read thusly:
Si Na Ta Si Ma Ni
No Ye Na Ye No
Sit Thi Va Pha Sit Thi
In 1991, LP Kamphan began to craft Phra Kring Khosapanyo
A monk from Nakhon Phanom Province (see Footnotes 1) presented Luang Pu Kamphan with a selection of holy artefacts, hoping that his pure merit and morality, would allow him to successfully incorporate them into his amulets. An ancient bronze casket and the holy relics of the Lord Buddha became the integral ingredient in LP Kamphan’s Phra Kring Khosapanyo.
A Manner of Moral Cultivation
LP Kamphan was known for being kind, generous, calm, and compassionate towards everyone around him. He was endlessly humble, and never one to turn away anyone in need of guidance or assistance. It was for this reason, that it became easy for people to revere and respect him.
Because of his upstanding reputation, every project he was involved in had no trouble finding the finance and resources they needed to see them to fruition. Whether through money or manual labour, people gravitated towards the master and pitched in however they could. A serious and steadfast man, LP Kamphan found time throughout all these projects to continue practising and tutoring meditation.
The Passing of a Great Man
After a prolonged period of illness, LP Kamphan passed away peacefully on Sunday, November 24th, 2003, around 2 AM, in his cubicle at Wat That Mahachai
Herein is a condensed account of the life of a true master and adherent of the Buddhist faith. More information about him is also available on the official website of Wat Pa Mahachai
- The monk who gave an ancient bronze casket and the holy relics of the Lord Buddha to Luang Pu Kamphan was the Ecclesiastical Provincial Governor of Nakhon Phanom at that time. The information did not indicate his name and did not mention his duties regarding the restoration of the pagoda. According to his position, he should have some restoration responsibilities. But the restoration of this pagoda is a national matter. There are many parts involved. The main taskforce is the Thai government and the Fine Arts Department of Thailand. He gave 2 things, an ancient bronze casket that used to contain the Buddha’s relics and the broken Buddha’s relics which Luang Pu Kamphan used to smelt with other materials to form Phra Kring Khosapanyo B.E.2534.