The Illegalization of Phra Pidta Amulets in Singapore in the 1970s: An Affront to Religious Freedom
Singapore is world famous for its Human Rights impingements, but this Thai Amulet story puts the icing on the cake, to make the leaders of Singapore look like a bunch of total nincompoops, as well as revealing them as committing crimes against Religious Beliefs. In the 1970s, Singapore passed a law that made it illegal to wear or own Thai Phra Pidta amulets. This move was seen as an impingement on religious freedom and was met with worldwide criticism. The Phra Pidta amulet is a symbol of the Buddhist faith and is believed to offer protection to the wearer.
The Thai Pidta amulet features a monk sitting in a half-lotus position with his hands covering his eyes. The literal translation of “Pidta” means closed eyes, signifying the closure of the six senses where ultimate focus and peace can be attained. I do ponder perhaps if the Singapore Government were more afraid that criminals might perhaps truly have powerful magic that can beat their systems, more than being afraid of having to catch criminals wearing an amulet that they believe does not work! It seems to me, that the Singapore Government is afraid of the power of Thai amulets, for it empowers its people tto overcome the difficulties their own government set on them, and rise above the working class breadline level, to find true wealth and success.
The amulet is popular both in Thailand and around the world, with many top Thai monks producing their own versions. The value of Phra Pidta amulets fluctuates due to a handful of factors such as the materials used, the monk who produced them, and the rarity of the piece, with some fetching upwards of two million Thai baht (64,000 USD).
Despite the amulet’s popularity, the Singaporean government felt that it was inspiring youth to commit crimes without fear of getting caught. According to them, followers also believed they could get into fights without feeling pain, thus inspiring criminal acts and violence. However, this view is not shared by many, and the law was seen as an impingement on religious freedom and an affront to human rights.
It is not the object that is at fault but rather the wrong views of the criminal-minded wearer. In fact, one of the rules of wearing a Phra Pidta amulet is to keep the five Buddhist precepts, otherwise, the amulet is said to not work for evildoers. Moreover, in the case of criminals, most would commit a crime with or without such a Phra Pidta amulet.
The move by the Singaporean government to illegalize the wearing of the Phra Pidta amulet was seen as absurd by many. After all, there are endless objects that people may consider ‘invincibility’ inducing. Should we illegalize all of them? This law was a clear affront to religious freedom and the human right to wear an object of religious faith.
The Phra Pidta amulet is a symbol of Thai Buddhist culture and miniature Buddhist arts. It is a sacred object that holds deep meaning to the Buddhist faith. To illegalize its wearing is to deny the religious rights of individuals who hold this amulet dear to their hearts. The Singaporean government, in this case, failed to understand the significance of the amulet to its followers.
In conclusion, the illegalization of Phra Pidta amulets in Singapore in the 1970s was a clear affront to religious freedom and human rights. The move was seen as absurd by many, and it is not the object that is at fault but rather the wrong views of the criminal-minded wearer. The Phra Pidta amulet is a symbol of Thai Buddhist culture and miniature Buddhist arts, and to illegalize its wearing is to deny the religious rights of individuals who hold this amulet dear to their hearts. We must ensure that such a move is not repeated anywhere in the world and that religious freedom is respected at all times.
Presenting a close up look at a pristinely well preserved and rare Pra Khun Phaen Pong Prai Kumarn, with 6 code stamps on front face, and Pra Somdej indent on rear face, with bronze wanich and sai rae tong kam golden coating. This is a master class Khun Phaen of LP Tim, which won first prize trophy during the August 2561 BE LP Tim amulet competition of the Samakom Luead Ban Kaay Luang Phu Tim amulet association.
This Model is Pra Khun Phaen pok Pim Niyom Sao Mee Sen, in Pink Prai Kumarn Powders with Sai rae Tong Kam golde coating, 6 code stamps on front face, amd Pra Somdej coin impression indented into rear face. this Amulet won first prize trophy during the highly esteemed Amulet competition of the Luead Ban Kaay Lp Tim Amulets association, for its impressive beauty and originality, in the category of Pra Khun Phaen with coin impressions in rear face.
Luang Phu Tim Issarigo, was of course not only one of the most highly acclaimed and sought after Guru Monks for his amulets in his lifetime, amd posthumously, but is also the holder of the highest esteem in Thai Buddhist amulet history for Pong Prai Kumarn powders. Luang Phu Tim, is Internationally Acclaimed, for his famous Pra Khun Phaen Pong Prai Kumarn, and Look Om powder balls. As to the classic ‘Rian’ type coin image amulets which have become all time favourites, and eternally, world famous classic amulets of the high end variety. His rian Jaroen Porn, and Rian Nakprok Paed Rorp are amongst the most highly sought after coin amulets of all.
An exquisitely beautiful Pra Khun Phaen Prai Kumarn 2515 BE Pim Yai Niyom Block Tong Hlueang (Block 2) Hlang Dtok Dtaeng Niyom Nuea Chompoo with Khaw Hniaw Suk & Pong Prai Kumarn Ta Bronze Wanich Dtem Ongk, code Sala (crown code stamp), code 3, and quadruple code Pidta embossed on the front face, with the indented image of a Rian Pra Somdej Lor LP Tim embossed into the rear face as an indentation.
The Pra Khun Phaen Block Sorng, of Luang Phu Tim (Wat Laharn Rai), or, Popularly now known as the ‘Khun Phaenn Pi 15’, has other names too, depending on which of the many subdivisions the particular Pim belongs to. Some of the more commonly heard of Pim are the Khun Phaen Sum Khad,also known as ‘Khun Phaen Sao Khad’, Khun Phaen Block Tong Hlueang (Gorn Dtok Dtaeng pre-refined version, and Hlang Dtok Dtaeng post-refined version), and so on. But in most cases, all of these refer to the Khun Phaen 15 amulet, and are mere subdivisions for cataloguing and categorisation purposes.
Pra Khun Phaen Pong Prai Kumarn Luang Phu Tim from 2515 BE
The Pra Khun Phaen Pi 15, is in truth a series which includes amulets pressed during the years 2505 BE to 2515 BE, with a vast pantheon of different models and variations, which were only given official release in 2515 BE, but whose making began years before that. For ease of definition, they are all mostly referred to as Pra Khun Phaen Pi 15. It is expected that time will see further subcategorisation as the series is slowly catalogued into different categories.
Pra Khun Phaen Pi 15 4th Prizewinner Luead Ban Kaay Association Meeting
Since the confirmation of the reality of the Block 2 Khun Phaen Luang Phu Tim of 2515 BE, this edition has become one of the hottest prospects of the decade. Now is the time to study and collect, for the near and far future will make the Block 2 Edition as unaffordable as the Block Raek has become in the present day. In fact, the mainstream high end publications and many of the top entrepreneur collectors are now placing them in their showrooms at ever more highly elevated prices, since their general acceptance has become a reality.
Pra Khun Phaen Pong Prai Kumarn Luang Phu Tim
Below; Pra Khun Phaen Pong Prai Kumarn Pi 15 Amulets in the Famous Amata Siam Publication, which focuses on amulets of authenticity and high reputation, and has joined the ranks of those who ‘cheer’ the Pra Khun Phaen, and who are now auctioning and entering the amulets in competitions.
Three major encyclopaedic works have already been released in the last 2 years to catalogue the full pantheon, and the amulets are now beginning to disappear from the streets as the collectors and speculators snap them up and put them away in their safes.
Above and Below; you can see the Khun Phaen Pi 15 already appearing in the famous ‘Amata Siam’ publication. Some showrooms are aldready showing prices of $5000 – $7000 for some models of Khun Phaen Pi 15.
The recent events with confirmed and respected living initiates of Luang Phu Tim coming out to confirm and reveal the full story of the making of the Pra Khun Phaen Pong Prai Kumarn, along with presenting photographic visual evidence of the facts, has served to dispel and doubts or confusion about the reality of the Pra Khun Phaen 15 series. This, and many other conclusive forms of evidence have served to open up the truth and reveal this edition, which has been deliberately, or perhaps through mere oversight, hidden from the public, by a few powerful monopolists for many decades. These same people who once denied the Khun Phaen 15, are now proudly decorating their showrooms with these very same amulets.
The edition has stayed with the local folk, and did not fall only into the hands of the speculators, who have controlled the information available about all the many models which were actually made by Luang Phu Tim. That era is now over, and the Khun Phaen Pi 15 has taken its rightful position amongst the ranks of Pra Niyom amulets of the Tamniab Official Pantheon of Luang Phu Tim. Competitions with all the various models of Khun Phaen 15 and earlier are now commonplace, and proud devotees are entering their amulets into coompetition with great fervour.
Above; Ajarn Pisek of the Glum Anuraks Pra Krueang Luang Phu Tim speaks on National TV to break the News and destroy the Myths about the Pra Khun Phaen Prai Kumarn of Luang Phu Tim (created by Monopolists who only managed to get the 2517 BE edition in their possession, and 1. were unaware of the truth, as well as jealously blocking any editions they did not control, out of greed and prejudice). Luang Phu made other editions throughout the years between 2505 to his passing, with the 2515 BE edition now becoming the most preferred of all, overtaking the 2517 BE ‘Block Raek’ series
Below; A Video Podcast from with Narrative Ajarn Spencer Littlewood explaining a recent News Publication about the Pra Khun Phaen Pi 15
Ajarn Pisek has broken these myths, by revealing that Luang Phu Tim began to make and distribute Pra Khun Phaen in the year 2493 (Year of the Tiger). He then made his second edition in the year 2505 BE, and continuously distributed them throughout until his passing. But that in truth, the old devotees who grew up around Wat Laharn Rai (including Ajarn Pisek), did not wear the 2517 BE so called Pim Niyom edition, rather, that the true preferred edition of the local devotees who we close to Luang Phu, wear and collect the 2515 BE edition as the most preferred edition.
Below; Pra Khun Phaen Pi 15 Pim Yai Block Tong Hlueang Hlang Dtok Dtaeng Niyom Nuea Khaw Hniaw Sukh Long Sai Rae Tong Kam Luang Phu Tim
Below; Ajarn Pisek presents a Khun Phaen Luang Phu Tim Pi 15 amulet to her Majesty Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn Prataep Radtana Rachasuda Siam Boroma Rachakumaree
Ajarn Pisek Gives Pra Khun Phaen 15 Luang Phu Tim to Princess Prataep
Below; Pra Khun Phaen Sum Khad (Sao Khad)
Pra Khun Phaen Sum Khad (Sao Khad) – one of the many variations of the Pra Khun Phaen Pi 15
The Block Tong Hlueang was used to press Pra Khun Phaen Pong Prai Kumarn after the Block Hin Meed Gone broke. It was first used before the block press was given fine tuning, and then also again after having been filed down and carved to a more detailed and subtly styled detail, with the first pressings being known as ‘Long Pim Block Tong Hlueang Gon Dtok Dtaeng’. The more refined version was then given the name ‘Block Tong Hlueang Hlang Dtok Dtaeng (Niyom)’. The Block Tong Hlueang press is also known by local devotees of the Era as ‘Pim Sum Khad’ or ‘Pim Sao Khad’, and also other names. All of the different names refer to the very same Pim.
Rear face features of a Pra Khun Phaen Pong Prai Kumarn Pim Sum Khad (Khun Phaen Block Tong Hlueang/Block 2)
After the true Looksit and current mythbusters have revealed the truth, the most preferred edition is now becoming the 2514-2515 BE (Khun Paen 15). The Pra Khun Phaen Pong Prai Kumarn is a preferred choice of both the wise investor and devotee, as well as the perfect choice for those Devotees who seek the immense power of Luang Phu Tim’s now Legendary Pra Khun Phaen Pong Prai Kumarn Pi 15. Since the confirmation of the reality of various previously undiscovered editions of Khun Phaen Luang Phu Tim, and ‘coming out’ of various Looksit Aek (direct initiates of LP Tim who were involved in the making of the Khun Phaen Prai Kumarn amulets between the years 2505 BE and 2515 BE, the amulet world has been taken by storm, and turned upon its head.
Below; Luang Phu Tim is seen with Ajarn Piarn Wit (left), thirtheenth direct initiate of Luang Phu Tim, during the time around 2514 BE when he was helping Luang Phu as a lay practitioner. Ajarn Piarn Wit and various other direct devotees and initiates of Luang Phu have now come out into Public to reveal the facts, for documentation and confirmation.
Luang Phu Tim is seen with Ajarn Piarn Wit (left), thirtheenth direct initiate of Luang Phu Tim
The 2515 BE Block 2 series was the first edition to come to light in this revolution, that was undiscovered by the Samakom Pra and the ‘Chang Ga Buay Puttapanich’ commercial monopolists (self claimed ‘experts’), who forced acceptance of only the 2517 BE edition, and demanded the amulet world should only accept the amulets which they themselves possessed to be classified.
Pra Khun Phaen Pong Prai Kumarn Long Pim (Block 2 Sum/Sao Khad) Luang Phu Tim
One big mistake the Chang Ga Buay Puttapanich and Samakom Pra had made, was to put the name of Ajarn Piarn Wit and Ajarn Sukhothai and other Ajarns such as Ajarn Maeng, into their catalogues and encyclopaedic publications, as being the Ajarns involved in the making of the Khun Phaen Pong Prai Kumarn amulets of Luang Phu Tim. because after the denial of the 2515 BE edition, and statements that Ajarn Piarn Wit was the maker of a later edition in 2517 BE which Luang Phu did not bless were made.
Ajarn Piarn Wit watches Luang Phu Tim perform a blessing on the car of a devotee circa 2514 BE
But then suddenly, Ajarn Piarn Wit came out to speak thorugh this provocation, and provided photographic evidence and official confirmations to show that firstly, Ajarn Piarn Wit was ordained and initiated by Luang Phu Tim in 2514 BE, and assisted in the ,making of the 2515 BE ‘Sao Khad Block 2’ edition with Luang Phu. he provided many pieces of evidence, and the fact that he was already stated to be the 13th direct initiate of Luang Phu Tim and directly involved in the making of the Khun Phaen Pong Prai Kumarn
Above; Video interview conducted by Mor Grit, famous collector of Amulets of Luang Phu Tim, and Talkshow host, inquires with Ajarn Piarn Wit, the 13th direct Initiate of Luang Phu Tim, who ordained with Luang Phu and was one of his close assistants, about the truth of the 2515 BE and earlier editions of Pra Khun Phae, and receives direct confirmation of the facts, authenticating these editions. The beginning of the video shows photographic evidence of Ajarn Piarn Wit as a young man ordained with Luang Phu, as well as serving him as a Lay Practitioner over the years, helping Luang Phu to make amulets, and serving his needs.
Ajarn Piarn Wit as he was Ordained in his early years, at the side of Luang Phu Tim.
Below; Locals of Ban Kaay in Rayong show their Pra Khun Phaen 15 amulets, and tell of their knowledge and experience of the true facts, as local devotees of Luang Phu Tim, who know the truth, much better than a load of so called experts from Bangkok and other Provinces, who happened to pass by decades ago, snap up a few amulets and try to make the whole remaining pantheon disappear, be manipulating public beliefs with their own self sponsoring publications, and influence with the media. Those days are over now in the days of the Internet, where communication has become much easier, and the new younger generation of amulet aficionados have applied their knowledge of internet to put the pieces of the puzzle back together, and reveal the truth to the world.
Below; Locals of Ban Kaay in Rayong show their Pra Khun Phaen 15 amulets.
The Samakom Pra were dumbfounded when Ajarn Piarn Wit came out to confirm the edition which is as good as ‘from the horses mouth’. In video interview with a famous expert and collector and TV star, he called Ajarn Sukhothai, the official expert who first catalogued all the officially accepted Khun Phaen into their respective series block presses, and named them. In the telephone conversation with the President of Luang Phu Tim Amulet Association in Sukhothai (who can be considered to be amongst the top 3 officially accepted people in the Know, and the person who first defined the different block presses), The president of the Sukhothai Luang Phu Tim Amulet Association confirmed the existence and authenticity of the 2515 edition, and the previous editions which were made between 2505 BE and 2515 BE.
Ajarn Piarn Wit once more walking beside Luang Phu Tim, holding his betel nut and areca tray (Chan Hmak)
Examples of Pra Khun Phaen Pong Prai Kumarn from the previous ‘Hin Meed Gone’ razor sharpening stone block press, which after breaking, was superceded by the Block Tong Hlueang Brass Block Press.
Below; Ajarn Piarn Wit reveals the truth of the pressing of the 2515 BE Khun Phaen 15, and that Luang Phu blessed them. He explains that the til now preferred ‘Block Raek supposed ‘first block’ was actually the third block press development, and that the Block Sorng (2nd Block Press), preceded it. Ajarn Piarn Wit confirms the reality of the Khun Phaen 2515 BE with great sincerity.
Ajarn Piarn Wit Seated once more at the side of Luang Phu Tim, as one of his close ‘Looksit Aek’ direct initiate apprentices.
Below; Mr Chui, direct grandson and initiate of Luang Phu Tim, confirms the reality of the Block 2 Sereies, blessed by Luang Phu Tim. The beginning of the video shows Mr Chui as a Samanera Monk at the side of Luang Phu Tim’s corpse at the time of his death.
Below we can admire an example of a Block 2 Pim Yai from a famous Amulet Auctioneer Magazine in Nuea Chompoo from some years ago now, which auctioned for 65,000 Thai baht (Roughly 1950$ US) – the Pi 15 amulets have already quadrupled the below price in various auction rooms and shows.
The block Tong Hlueang was then refined further, separating the two versions of the brass block mold into ‘Gorn Dtok Dtaeng’ (before refinement) and ‘Hlang Dtok Dtaeng’ (after further refinement – these are ‘Pim Niyom’ most preferred). Below; some more examples of the Pra Khun Phaen Pong Prai Kumarn – these belonging to the Block Hin Meed Gone amulet, in a Samakom Pra amulet appreciation society encyclopedia. The block hin meed gone series preceded the block tong hlueang and was less refined, and was superceded by the block tong hlueang after the block hin meed gone broke.
Khun Phaen Prai Kumarn Block Hin Meed Gone Luang Phu Tim
The Pra Khun Phaen Pong Prai Kumarn Luang Phu Tim amulet, has has been one of the most popular amulets in the whole Pantheon of Thai Buddhist Amulets of the last century, and of all time, and is now almost impossible to encounter commonly anywhere in any amulet emporium, except for the most elite showrooms, and at elevated prices.
The Sacredness of the Pra Khun Phaen Pong Prai Kumarn is legendary and unquestioned in Thailand, and its magical power is commonly accepted by all. The Muan Sarn Sacred Powders of the Pra Khun Phaen Pong Prai Kumarn are considered to be amongst the most powerful powders to empower amulets in existence.
The Pra Khun Phaen Pong Prai Kumarn is a highly attractive and rare Sacred Amulet, that is considered truly Powerful, and stands as the Master Class Amulet of its Category, and is considered a Most Highly Prized addition to any Master Class Collector’s Showcase, and more importantly, is a most powerful amulet to possess for Bucha, and receive its Blessings, which History has proved time and time again to be one of the most powerful and famous amulets in Thai Amulet History.
Ancient Amulet has now expanded the Pra Kru section of the Store with some Subcategories for easy research, when seeking to study one particular type of Pra Kru from one particular amulet hiding place find. Just surf to the Pra Kroo Section to see the subcategories, which will grow as we document each particular Hiding Place Find Edition.
Right now there are three new categories added to Ancient Amulet Pra Kru Section, which we have also made separate info pages about, and can be read on the following links;