Somdej Toh

Created 24th February, 2006 16:26 (UTC), last edited 12th November, 2006 12:24 (UTC)

Somdej Toh (สมเด็จ โต), Somdej Phra Puttajan Toh (สมเด็จพระอาจารย์ โต) or just Toh (โต)¹ [1Somdej is a religious title meaning abbot. Somdej Phra is the title for a high-ranking Buddhist monk.] (1788-1872 CE or 2331-2415 BE) is a highly respected Buddhist monk from Thailand.

He is probably the single most respected monk in Thailand, alive or dead. The Buddhist amulets that he blessed are particularly sought after with the ones he blessed whilst Abbot at Wat Rakang (วัดระฆัง) fetching anything up to ฿10,000,000 (that's well over £100,000 and even over $200,000 US). We have two statues of him in our Buddhist shrine in our home.

He also makes an appearance in what has to be my favourite Thai film, the story of Nang Nak (a true² [2At least for some values of true.] Thai ghost story) where he first saves Mak (the ghost's husband) from his wounds suffered in a battle and then later saves the soul of Nak from destruction at the hands of a ghost banisher (charmingly mistyped as ghost banister in the English subtitles).

References and further reading

In Thai