Buddha, Dhamma and Saṅgha yantras

An Ayutthaya Period Meditation Manual from Wat Pradusongtham

  • Potprecha Cholvijarn Chulalongkorn University

Abstract

This article aims to contribute to the ongoing study of borān kammaṭṭhāna, the premodern Theravāda meditation tradition, by providing a detailed presentation and an analysis of a late Ayutthaya meditation manual, titled The diagrams/rooms of the qualities of the Buddha, Dhamma and Saṅgha, from Wat Pradusongtham, Ayutthaya. The history of Wat Pradusongtham goes back at least to the reign of King Songtham (Boromracha I, reigned 1608–1628), when it was an important borān kammaṭṭhāna centre and was associated with the forest-dwelling monks’ division of the Saṅgha. The manual describes the practice of visualisations of three yantra diagrams that represent the qualities (guṇa) of the Triple Gems and makes use of various bodily bases, canonical and paracanonical chants and mantras as aids to the practice of recollections and the development of concentration (samādhi). Its interpretation is based on the author’s interview with a borān kammaṭṭhāna teacher, Phra Khru Sitthisangwon (Wira Ṭhānavīro), the meditation instructor at Wat Ratchasittharam, Thonburi.

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Published
2021-05-14
Section
Articles