Luang Phor Lek
“Luang Por Lek”
The Most Venerable Phra Bhavanakosolthera
(Teera Dhammadaro, Pali Scholar Level 4)
(1924 – 1968)
When Luang Por Lek was born, he was named ‘Jiak.’ Later, he changed his first name to ‘Teera.’ He was born to a farmer family on 17 January 1924 at Ban Khlong Nong Ta Gla Village, Rajadheva Sub-District, Bangplee District, Samuthprakarn Province. His father’s name is Jok, and his mother’s name is Wan. Their last name is ‘Klorsuwan.’ Luang Por Lek has eight siblings whereas he is the third child.
Teera was ordained to be a Buddhist novice monk on 17 August 1937 at Wat Nang Chee Temple, Pak Khlong Bhasicharoen Sub-District, Bhasicharoen District, Bangkok. His preceptor was Venerable Phra Kru Barihanbaromadhat (Puan Kesaro), the abbot of Wat Nang Chee Temple.
On 8 July 1945, the novice monk Teera was completely ordained to be a Buddhist monk at Wat Paknam, Pak Khlong Bhasicharoen Sub-District, Bhasicharoen District, Bangkok, given the monastic name as ‘Dhammadaro.’ He was ordained by Phra Kru Barihanbaromadhat, the preceptor, whereas Luang Por Wat Paknam (Sodh Candasaro) was the co-preceptor.
- Completed grade 4 at Wat Nam Daeng, Bangplee District, Samuthprakarn Province.
- Completed the advanced level of Dhamma study.
- Completed the Pali study level 4.
Ecclesiastic Order and Duty:
1952 – Appointed to be the Pali examination committee
1957 – Promoted to the ecclesiastic order with the title ‘Phra Kru Samanadhamsamatan’
1958 – Promoted to the higher ecclesiastic order with the same title
1965 – Appointed to be the headmaster of Wat Paknam’s Dhamma School
1966 – Appointed to be the vice abbot of Wat Paknam, Bangkok
1967 – Promoted to the higher ecclesiastic order with the title ‘Phra Bhavanakosolthera’
Luang Por Lek was not quite healthy since he was born. He used to mention that “I won’t live longer than 45 year old, and I will die.” However, no so many people believed him. When he was 44 year old, he was sick of heart and intestine disease. After he was admitted to the hospital for few days, he passed away peacefully on Wednesday, 10 July 1968, which was the 31st year of his monkhood.
Luang Por Lek of Wat Paknam has been admired for his compassion and gentleness. He was beloved and well respected by fellow Buddhist monks, novice monks, and lay devotees. So, he was nicknamed as ‘Luang Por Lek’ which was second to ‘Luang Por Yai’ or the Most Venerable Phramongkolthepmuni (Sodh Candasaro).
Note: ‘Lek’ is a Thai word for ‘small’ whereas ‘Yai’ is a Thai word for ‘big.’
(The above picture and content was obtained from www.watpaknam.org and translated by Pittaya Wong)