A Short History of Dhammakaya Temple อาจารย์ มิตร จอย (Myoma Myint Kywe)

A Short History of  Dhammakaya Temple

Researched by- อาจารย์  มิตร จอย
(Myoma Myint Kywe)
The Phra Mongkhonthepmuni
(Sodh Candasaro) (พระมงคลเทพมุนี) (สด จนฺทสโร), the great abbot of Wat Paknam, was the founder of the Dhammakaya meditation school Thailand in 1914.

The Dhammakaya "Dharma-body" Tradition is a Buddhist Tradition founded in Thailand in the 1970s, with roots stretching back much earlier. It is said to be the fastest-growing Buddhist movement in present-day Thailand. Meditation, previously considered nothing more than a meditation exercise or spiritual austerity, became popular through this master’s dedication to teaching and research in the Dhammakaya tradition he has discovered. 

The movement is primarily represented today by its non-profit foundation, the Dhammakaya Foundation, and the Wat Phra Dhammakaya temple in Pathum Thani Province, Thailand.


The Great Abbot’s most gifted disciple was a nun Khun Yay or คุณยายอาจารย์มหารัตนอุ The Great Teacher Khun Yay, who Ubasika Chandra Khonnokyoong. Wat Phra Dhammakaya was founded by Master  Khun Yay in 1970 after the Great Abbot’s death when her own dwelling at Wat Paknam in Bangkok became too small to accommodate all those coming to study meditation there.

Teacher Khun Yay and her students led by Ven. Dhammajayo Bhikkhu, the president of Dhammakaya Foundation and Ven. Dattajivo Bhikkhu, Vice Abbot, Dhammakaya Temple who wanted to see the continual growth of the Dhammakaya Tradition and established the temple with vision of a sanctuary for peaceful spiritual practice a refuge in the midst of a turbulent world. The temple was to be a centre for international meditation study.  The temple was established on Magha Puja Day, 20 February 1970, on an eighty-acre plot of land donated by lady Prayat Phaetayapongsa – Visudhathibodi.

The site sixteen kilometres north of Bangkok International Airport was originally called ‘Soon Buddacakk-Patipatthamm’ From acidic paddy fields, a woodland was created: a parkland for meditators. Buildings were kept to a minimum and emphasized simplicity, easy maintenance, cleanliness and durability.

The foundation stone for the main chapel laid by H.R.H. Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn on behalf of H.M. the King in December 1977 marked by the official foundation of the center as a temple – Wat Phra Dhammakaya. The Main Chapel was completed in 1982 and the ceremony for the allocation of the chapel boundary (sima) was held three years later. The "SIMA" around the temple compound are called big boundary stones ("SIMA JAI" - สีมาใหญ่).

With the expansion of the temple to one thousand acres in 1985, Wat Phra Dhammakaya stands on the threshold of the development of the World Dhammakaya Center as a resource to serve the needs of the international community.

Dhammakaya Meditation is based on four principles: three methods of concentration and the Principle of the Center. The three concentration techniques are: 
Meditating on an object of visualization (Kasina)Recollection of Lord Buddha’s virtues (ဗုဒၶါနုႆ     တိ) (Buddhanussati),and Mindfulness of breathing (အာနာပါန) (อานาปานสติ) (Anapanasati).

In Buddhism, kasiṇa refers to a class of basic visual objects of meditation. There are ten (ကသိုဏ္း ) (กสิณ) (kasiṇa) mentioned in the Pali Tipitaka.

1.   earth (paṭhavī kasiṇa),
2.   water (āpo kasiṇa),
3.   fire (tejo kasiṇa),
4.   air, wind (vāyo kasiṇa),
5.   blue, green, brown (nīla kasiṇa),
6.   yellow (pīta kasiṇa),
7.   red (lohita kasiṇa),
8.   white (odāta kasiṇa),
9.   enclosed space, hole, aperture (ākāsa kasiṇa),
10.               bright light (āloka kasiṇa).

၁။ ပထ၀ီ ကသိဏ        = ပထ၀ီ (ေျမ) ကသိုဏ္း။
၂။ အာေပါ ကသိဏ       = အာေပါ (ေရ) ကသိုဏ္း။
၃။ ေတေဇာ ကသိဏ      = ေတေဇာ (မီး) ကသိုဏ္း။
၄။ ၀ါေယာ ကသိဏ       = ၀ါေယာ (ေလ) ကသိုဏ္း။
၅။ နီလ ကသိဏ           = နီလ (အညိဳေရာင္) ကသိုဏ္း။
၆။ ပီတ ကသိဏ           = ပီတ (အ၀ါေရာင္) ကသိုဏ္း။
၇။ ေလာဟိတ ကသိဏ    = ေလာဟိတ (အနီေရာင္) ကသိုဏ္း။
၈။ ၾသဒါတ ကသိဏ        = ၾသဒါတ (အျဖဴေရာင္) ကသိုဏ္း။
၉။ အာကာသ ကသိဏ     = အာကာသ (ေကာင္းကင္) ကသိုဏ္း။
၁၀။ အာေလာက ကသိဏ = အာေလာက (အလင္းေရာင္) ကသိုဏ္း

The following are the principles and practice of Dhammakaya meditation in considerable detail. We noted that Dhammakaya Meditation combines aspects of concentration (Samatha) and wisdom (Vipassana) meditation. These, together with morality (Sila) make up the Noble Eightfold Path.

Dhammakaya Samatha (Concentration) meditation utilizes three of Lord Buddha’s forty meditation subjects (Of the forty objects meditated upon as (ကမၼ႒ာန္း ၄၀) (กรรมฐาน) (kammatthana):
visualization of the light sphere (Aloka Kasina),
repetition of a mantra Samma Arahang  to call Lord Buddha’s wisdom and purity into the mind (Buddhanussati), and mindfulness of breathing (Anapanasati).

Samatha (calm) is considered to be a prerequisite of concentration. In terms of meditative practices samatha refers to techniques which assist in the calming of the mind. One of the principal techniques taught by the Buddha for this purpose is mindfulness of breathing (anapanasati).

This practice is also used in order to concentrate the mind. As such, samatha meditation and concentration meditation are often considered synonymous. The goal is the establishing of mindfulness as used in conjunction with insight (vipassana) practices, resulting in wisdom (panna).

Samatha is commonly practiced as a prelude to and in conjunction with wisdom practices.

Through the meditative development of calm abiding, one is able to suppress the obscuring five hindrances. With the suppression of these hindrances, the meditative development of insight yields liberating wisdom.

In the Theravada tradition there are forty objects of meditation. Mindfulness (sati) of breathing (anapana: anapanasati) is the most common samatha practice.

Samatha can include other samadhi practices as well.

Some meditation practices such as contemplation of a kasina object favor the development of samatha, others such as contemplation of the aggregates are conducive to the development of vipassana, while others such as mindfulness of breathing are classically used for developing both mental qualities.

The fourth principle at the heart of Dhammakaya is concentration at the center of the center.

By bringing the mind to rest at the center of the body, the meditator can see his or her own Dhamma sphere (sphere crystal) which reveals the consequences of moral behavior.

Continually focusing at the center of the center, the practitioner can proceed through ever purer body-minds all the way to Nirvana.

And the Principle of the Center specifies that these three methods of concentration are all applied simultaneously at the center of the body as follows:

Position 1: The Nostril Aperture (Concentrate with your mind and visualize until there exists a vision of a bright and clear sphere. Let the sphere appear at your nostril, for ladies at the left nostril and for gentlemen at the right nostril. Fix your attention and rest your mind at the center of the sphere. This is a very bright and clear spot, the size of a grain of sand or needle point. Repeat the words “Samma Arahang” mentally three times to sustain the bright and clear sphere at the nostril. This is the first position at which your mind is focused.)

Position 2: The Eye Socket (Mentally move the bright, clear sphere slowly up to rest at the eye socket – ladies to your left eye socket and gentlemen to your right eye socket. While you are slowly moving the sphere with your mind, fix your attention always at the small bright center of the sphere. As the sphere rests at your eye socket, repeat mentally the words “Samma Arahang” three times. This is the second position. )

Position 3: The Center of the Head (Mentally shift the sphere slowly to rest at the center of your head in line with the eyes. Keep the mind constantly fixed at the bright center of the luminous sphere. Repeat to yourself the words “Samma Arahang” three times to keep the sphere as bright and clear as you can, so that it shines and remains in that position. This is the third position. )

Position 4: The Palate Terminus (Roll your eye-balls upward without lifting your head, so that your vision will turn back and inside. Meanwhile, mentally move the luminous and transparent sphere slowly and directly downward toward the palate. Recite to yourself the words “Samma Arahang” three times, to make the sphere even brighter and clearer, and hold it there. This is the fourth position. )

Position 5: The Throat Aperture (Mentally move the bright, clear sphere slowly and directly downward to rest at the throat aperture. Repeat the words “Samma Arahang” to yourself three times, to keep the sphere bright and clear and hold it steady. This is the fifth position.)

Position 6: The Center of the Body (Navel Level) (Next, slowly move the clear, luminous sphere directly downward, while keeping your attention focused on the bright nucleus at its center. Bring the sphere to rest at the center of the body, where the breath ends, even with the navel. This is the sixth position. Mentally recite the words “Samma Arahang” three times to keep the transparent sphere bright and luminous, and to hold it steady.)

Position 7: The Center of the Body and the Proper Position for Meditation (Two Inches above Navel Level) (shift the sphere directly upward two middle finger joints above the navel. This is the center of the body and the seventh position. This is the mind’s permanent resting place. Whenever a person or any other creature is born, dies, sleeps or wakens, the Dhamma Sphere (Sphere crystal) which governs the body arises from this position. The Dhamma Sphere is composed of the Vision Sphere, the Memory Sphere, the Thought Sphere, and the Cognition Sphere. During meditation, the Dhamma Sphere appears to float from the sixth position up to the seventh position. The seventh position is also considered to be the center of the body.

Keep the bright, clear sphere resting at the center of the body in the seventh position. Mentally recite the words “Samma Arahang” continuously to keep the sphere still and make it become brighter and clearer. Concentrate so that the sphere shines continuously.

Focus your mind at the bright center of the sphere, and at the bright center of each successive sphere that emerges.
Pay no attention to any external sensation. Let your mind delve deeper and deeper into the successive centers as you recite “Samma Arahang”, the Parikamma-bhavana. Even if ants are climbing all over you or mosquitoes are flying all around, pay no heed. Don’t even pay attention to following the breath.

Bring your mind to rest at the center of the center, by envisioning a bright sphere. Your mind should rest steadily and continuously at the center of the sphere. Do not force the mind too strongly. Over exerting the mind will cause a shift in your meditation and the mind will not be able to see.

Do not use your physical eyes to focus on the vision. The practice is only for your mind. Gently train your mind to see a bright, clear, steady sphere. Mentally observe and focus on the bright clear center. Concentrate on the center of each consecutive sphere that emerges from the preceding one. Do not wander to the left, right, front, rear, top or bottom. Always focus on the center of each new sphere which emerges from the bright shining center. Rest the mind there.).

The Dhammakaya mantra is “Samma Arahang”. Samma means Right, Highest or Ultimate. It stands for Samma Sambuddho which means the Buddha’s Supreme Right Enlightenment or Supreme Right Wisdom. The word Arahang means the virtue of the Buddha being far away from passion. In other words, it represents perfect purity. Thus, when you repeat the words “Samma Arahang - Samma Arahang” you are calling Buddha’s wisdom and purity into your mind. This is Buddhanussati or recollection of Lord Buddha’s virtue.