The Three Yanmunis
28 AUG 2010:
The Three Yanmunis refer to the Three Chau Khun from Wat Uttamaram, the State of Kelantan.
They are Chau Khun Khron (Tok Raja), Chau Khun Chan and Chau Khun Mit.
The first Chau Khun is Phor Than Khron or Luang Phor Khron. He has deep passion and interest in Buddhism since his young age. Upon completed his Buddhism studies in Songkhla, Thailand, Chau Khun Khron was appointed Chief Abbot in Wat Huaporm Nai, Southern Thailand. After spending about a decade in Wat Huaporm Nai, Chau Khun Khron returned to the state of Kelantan as he was very keen to serve the people in his village. He was later appointed as Chief Abbot of Wat Uttamaram. Chau Khun Khron continue his enthusiasm in Buddhism and to serve the local by spreading the Dhamma and Buddhism teaching. After years of hardship and determination, he finally has enough resources and funding to establish a school to teach Thai language and Buddhism teaching in Wat Uttamaram. Despite the difficulty in transportation and accessing to the temple, many monks and children has come to Wat Uttamaram to study as Chau Khun Khron's knowledge in Buddhism and Dhamma is very deep. As part of the tradition in Thai temple, he has made and consecrated some of the most well-known amulet, known as Phra Pidta in three-dimensional. The craftmanship is considered to be among the best in the genre. The efficacy of his amulet is well-known by devotees and collectors and thus, his amulet are among the most sought-after.
The second Chau Khun is Chau Khun Chan. Chau Khun Chan was ordained in Wat Uttamaram at the age of twenty-two and his Buddhist name in 'Phra Chan Kesaro'. As to strengthen his knowledge in Buddhism teaching, he enrolled in Buddhist Institute of Thailand and later further into the Buddhist College of Wat Muclintawapi Vihara, Nongcik, Pattani in Southern Thailand. Upon returning to the State of Kelantan, Chau Khun Khron requested him to stay in Wat Uttamaram to help in administering the temple and to run the school for Thai language and Buddhist teaching. In B.E. 2506, Chau Khun Chan was appointed as the Abbot of Wat Uttamaram (after Chau Khun Khron passed away). Due to his ernomous contributions and services to the society of Buddhist teachings in the state of Kelantan, he was elected to be the Lord Abbot of Kelantan by the Royal Highness, the Sultan of Kelantan. He was also conferred the title of 'Phra Vicaranayanmuni Nayaka Maha Thera' by the Buddhist Sangha Council of Thailand. Chau Khun Chan continues the legacy of Chau Khun Chan and also consecrated many amulets including the infamous Phra Pidta (with black lacquer or 'rak'), Chau Khun Chan Taolit B.E. 2503, Chau Khun Khron Taolit B.E. 2515 etc. His amulet is well-known for high 'Metta' properties ('friendliness and liking').
The third Chau Khun refers to Chau Khun Mit. He is as well the disciple and nephew of Chau Khun Khron. Chau Khun Mit enjoys carpentry and gardening during his youth and always been seen helping villagers and temple maintenance or construction work. When the time is right for entering monkhood, Chau Khun Mit went to Wat Uttamaram for ordination by Chau Khun Khron. He, later, enrolled in Buddhist college in Southern Thailand to further his knowledge and understanding about Buddhism and Dhamma. Upon returning from studies, Chau Khun Mit helps Chau Khun Khron and Chau Khun Chan in administration and running the school in Wat Uttamaram. As part of Chau Khun Khron's wish, he was seconded to Singapore to setup Wat Uttamayanmuni. He was appointed the Abbot of Wat Uttamayanmuni and later the Abbot for Wat Uttamaram (after Chau Khun Chan passed away). Alike Chau Khun Chan, he inherited the amulet making skills and knowledge from Chau Khun Khron. His famous amulet batches include Phra Pidta, Taolit B.E. 2505 (wahn) and Taolit B.E. 2506 (Chau Khun Khron image).
Chau Khun is abbreviated from 'Than Chau Khun' which means 'High Priest / Supreme Priest' in layman's term. The title of Than Chau Khun is conferred by the King of Thailand after recommendation from the Buddhist Committee of Thailand that requires certain criteria in practical (administration of temple), contribution in spreading the teaching of Buddhism as well as written examination from the Thai Buddhist committee. Typically, the title Than Chau Khun would take the responsibility of the head of monk for a certain province, county or state.
'Luang Phor' refers to 'The Honorable Monk' if translated into layman's term. 'Phor Than' would have the same meaning but mostly used in Southern Thailand, state of Kelantan, Kedah, Perlis etc. On the other hand, Luang Phor is more commonly heard in the Thailand.
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