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Wednesday, March 23, 2011

TONGKAT the déjà vu

 déjà vu   DÉJÀ VU    déjà vu

Let's me begin the dicussion with my favourite lines ............ 

"It may not be important to one but may be so to another. "

Nowadays, it is a must for a temple to come out ( produce / make ) with the scared tongkat ( Mai Thaw @ Mai Kru ) for the sake of getting donation from the public / devotees. This is because for them, ( wat committees ) nobody will come to your wat / temple if you do not making / producing any tongkat.  Because of that, various type and design of tongkat flooded in amulet merchandise. Some are REALLY a good authentic tongkat produced by the prominent monks / temple while some are just a business oriented tongkat or perhaps a decorative wood.

 “ Make tongkat, RM  pouring in,
no tongkat RM flies away  !”

Déjà vu, is the correct diction to be used when we talk about the tongkat.  The Scenario; our amulets market is flooded with hundred and perhaps thousand of newly made Mai Thaw @ Mai Kru @ Tongkat.  The scenario; few years back the same flow happened in Thailand, people getting crazy with Jatukham Ramathep amulets. Almost every temple in Thailand by hook or by crook was affected by this wind of change. Almost every temple’s shelves flooded with this Jatukham ramathep.

The scenario; in  Malaysia for example, in 2007 Wat Bhupharam, Penang had organised the biggest ceremony of Jatukham Ramathep blessing. Many famous and top monks from both Thailand and Malaysia, including, Achan Khun Phan's youngest son, Master Nak Son (nickname, Nui ) were invited and participated in the ceremony. Wat Bhupharam chief abbot, Phra Jong / Phor Than Jong ( formerly from Wat Kok Seraya, Tumpat Kelantan. Disrobed and left monkhood in 2008  ) led and organised the whole ceremonies and even built the biggest Jatukham Ramathep statue in Malaysia.

From 2003 to 2008,  various  Jatukham Ramathep amulets flooded in Thailand and its neighbour countries.  Even in Gerik, Perak ( Luang Phor Thuad’s shrine – Rajamoni’s Park in Air Kala , Gerik, Perak ), during the very 1st year of the official opening ceremony of the shrine, Jatukham Ramathep gained its popularity and thousand of people flocked to the site to get the special batch of this Jathukam Ramathep amulet. Some of the irresponsible amulet traders throng to the site too. The purpose was to sell their imitated and factory made Jatukham Ramathep. Well …… sold out like a hot cake. 

Toward the end, many of us lost thousands of ringgit because of the fake and uneffectious Jathukham Ramathep amulets. Luckily I haven’t fallen into / get hooked in this wind of change.  Just owned 3 pieces of Jatukham Ramathep amulets, all were a gift from a close friend.

Rajamoni's Park Special batch Jatukham Ramathep.

 Jatukham Ramathep made of Sarsi wood

 BE 2547 Jatukham Ramathep.
Déjà vu ! , the same scenarios are likely to be happened.  Amulets die hard nowadays getting crazy of collecting TONGKAT @ MAI THAW @ MAI KRU !  As I mentioned earlier, some of the wat / temple has no choice but FORCED to come out with their own version of tongkat. They will gain the basis knowledge of making tongkat, although some are not really QUALIFIED to produce the sacred tongkat but because of DOLLARS n CENTS, by hook or by crook they will make it done anyway.

Taking Kelantan Siamese Temple / Wat for examples, most of the wat came out with their own style / design of tongkat. The tongkat were made based on the knowledge that had been passed down from the great guru, some are inherited from Phor Than Kong’s disciples ( phor mor and achan ), some obtained the secrets of making tongkat from an old manuscripts, while most of the tongkat creator gained the tongkat infos from the wichah book – 108 Yant Pitsadarn. Frankly, most of the newly made tongkat were created based on the little knowledge of what they knew / learnt about the tongkat.  Me either, naïve !
 108 Yant Pitsardarn Manual

Phor Mor Keaw's Wichah Manuals

The truth………..most of the tongkat creators are actually novice monks or even just a wat committee. They will make ( prepare the materials and personally copied / inscribed khata  akhom and inserted inside the tongkat and then hand it over to the senior / chief monks to be plugsaeg. Bear in mind that, there are certain / specific  ways / rules ( crucial yet compulsory ) to be followed before / while inscribing the khata akhom. The tool to be used for instances, there are DO’S and DON’TS to be chose and followed, certain days  and months to be avoided, certain times, days and months to be chose, incantations  to be recited while inscribing, so on and so forth. ( to be discussed in depth soon )

Back to the discussion, some of the tongkat creator,  kinda confused on the real meaning of TONGKAT. They tend to misinterpret  and therefore come out with their own version of tongkat interpretation.  The tongkat is produced just for sake of DOING IT  ! As for them, TONGKAT is none other than ………………….


As for them, any rolled takrut that inserted inside the hollow wood or pen can be called  as tongkat.  Meaning to say that, the hollow wood or pen is just a tool / medium or as a CASING for those rolled takrut and then named / called it as SACRED TONGKAT ! 

Bros and sis, stop and think and rethink. Is this the correct way of producing the SACRED TONGKAT ? Are they following the right methods of making sacred tongkat ? Do our beloved Phor Than Kong had ever finished his tongkat by using the same way ?

hollow wood inserted with a rolled takrut.

Nowadays, most of the tongkat were ONLY inserted with an ordinary single rolled takrut that DOES NOT require any hollow wood as it casing.  Furthermore, the rolled takrut are not even hand inscribed, most of the takruts were machine mould / pressed takrut.

used pen inserted with a rolled takrut.

Below are some of the rolled takrut yants that have been inserted inside the hollow wood / pen to produce what they called it as TONGKAT / MAI THAW / MAI KRU.
a.       Yant Nakh Roi Petd
b.      Yant Tong Chei  Phra Isuan
c.       Yant Nak Nak Thong
d.      Yant Uk Nak Lorm
e.      Yant Gao Yord
f.        Yant Petd Thidt
g.       Yant See Yord
h.      Yant Itipikso Thoi Lang
i.         Yant Phut Tharsorn
j.        Yant Nak Mor Phut Thak Yakh
k.       Yant Nak Makh Phak Thak
l.         Yant Hua Jai Phra Khun Paen
m.    Yant Po Kha Sap
n.      etc

Sample of rolled and supportive  yants

The analysis; actually those yants do not require any wood / casing to make it effective or more effective. Without the hollow wood you still can feel the power of those yants. Those rolled yants can be carried along with you either by putting it in your pocket, purse, sling bag or perhaps hang around your neck or waist.

Meaning to say that, the hollow wood that used to STORE those rolled takrut is UNNECESSARY and  it makes no different whether with or without the wood as its medium / casing.  Meaning to say that, you can create / make your own "TONGKAT" by just inserted the rolled takrut inside any hollow wood or perhaps inserted it inside your used pen. Then you can call / name it as TONGKAT. Wow, such an easy work right ?

To make it more interesting yet convincing, the maker claimed that they’re using such a rare and sacred wood as as black woods ( Kemuning Hitam, Penawar Hitam ), red wood ( raja kayu, damar minyak ), Jangrakh wood , wood taken from Usombot, so on and so forth. In addition, some of the tongkat were inscribed /  punched / crafted with various type of yants / khata khom on it. Some of the yants / khata akhoms are the normally used in the takrut and phar yant making yants.

About those yants / khata akhoms; it's about YES n NO answer. YES for the certain yants that been used in tongkat making and NO for most of the yants, because Phor Than Kong didn't used any while finishing his version of ongkat. YES, for certain yants because some of the yants are used as a main and supportive yants. For instances,  Yant Phutsorn, Yant Ong Phra, Yant Phra Chao Ha Phra Ong, Yant Kratu Chet Grabarth and Yant Nak Phra Nak Thong  are widely used in various yants design, including for certain tongkat making, BUT THOSE YANTS are JUST the SUPPORTIVE YANTS and THOSE YANTS cannot STAND ALONE  as a MAIN TONGKAT YANTS ! ( sample of  supportive yants / khata akhom to be discussed in depth soon )

It’s hard to believe but that’s the fact and what had happened nowadays. Many of us are cheated with this naïve type of tongkat creation. The sacred TONGKAT that we are renting is none other than a piece of decorative wood with an ordinary rolled takrut.  Am I knocking your head or perhaps scratching your back ? Feel  cheated  ? Well……..  do believe me, it’s true !

TONGKAT, the real tongkat from Phor Than Kong’s lineage is beyond than that. It’s not a decorative wood with an ordinary takrut inserted. Phor Than Kong’s tongkat secrets lain within the tongkat, especially the secret materials and the specific yants / khom / khatas used. 

As mentioned in my earlier post. The basic materials used are …….

Special / specific khata akhom for tongkat.

The yant / khom inscribed differ from one to another ( specific types of tongkat's yant / khata akhom to be discussed in depth soon ) – depend on the purposes. Differ khatas akhom were used differently for phor mor’s  tongkat and laymen’s tongkat. The yants was inscribed onto a piece of copper and black lead plate. Sometimes, our  Phor Than Kong  used to inscribe the yant  onto a piece of folded Kradat Namman ( kertas minyak or a kind of tracing paper ),  Kradat Wau  ( kertas wau), Kradat Chet Si ( 7 colours paper )and even onto an aluminium foil. Chau Kuan @ Long Kuan for example, still using this thin aluminium foil when inscribing yant to make Maithaw Pakka – Pen Tongkat. 

 Mai Thaw Mai Janakh by Chau Khun Chan

 Mai Thaw Mai Janrakh by Chau Kuan

Talking about takrut's plate ( normally lead or brass / copper foil ), those days ur late Than Lek of Wat Ariyakiri only uses the  empty tooth paste tube ( those days most of the tooth paste tube are made of lead / pure tin ). The tooth paste then  will be dissected inner out to get the inner side of the tube. Other than this, Than Lek used to use the foil from the can - Milo, cigarette tin, Susu Cap Junjung’s can as jants medium. ( to be discussed in depth soon )

 sample of vintage tooth paste tube

 vintage 555 cigarettes and "susu cap junjung" tin / can

an old Milo tin

Back to the discussion....... Present period guru monk that used to produce a good and authentic tongkat is our late Than Dam from Wat Mai Naparram. Than Dam for example, used the differs khata akhom and materials for differs tongkat. Some of his tongkat does not required any khata akhom / inscribed  khata plate. The features of the tongkat just inserted with 108 Wanj, colour clothes and rattan from Fan Look Mit’s ceremony and  relics perhaps.

photo showing the 7 colours of clothe and rattan tied to the look mit

Even Phor Than Thit – Wat Machimaram, Jubakar Tumpat uses differs khata akhom for his differs tongkat ( make sure u get it directly from Than Thit, not from the amulets shelf please ! ). His first tongkat, made of Janrakh tree, jant inscribed onto kradat namman, with gold, bronze, and silver needles and a piece of buluh tumpat as its medium. Superb !


Those days, before Phor Than Kong uses SamKaSat needles ( gold, silver and brass ). Phor Than Kong used to use 3 and 5 ordinary blessed needles ( needles used in Fan Look Mit ceremony ) and  tied together with 3, 5 or 7 colour threads as one of the tongkat materials. The needles were blessed with specific khata akhom before inserted  into the tongkat.

Why needles ?  
( to be discussed in depth soon. Ha ha ha ...... times constraint ! )

Bear in mind that, some of Phor Than Kong’s tongkat does not has ( require ) any needle inserted, as I said before.  All depends on the purposes of the tongkat creation.

Fan Look Mit’s photo

Rare and sacred materials

i.         ivory tusk
ii.       selected porcupine's spike
iii.      tiger's forehead skin / fur
iv.      lightning's stone
v.       108 wanj
vi.      broken amulet's fragment
vii.     monk's robe
viii.   monk's hair
ix.      phra dhat - monk's relic
x.       left over rice from the arm bowl
xi.        etc

Path Nar Thang / Lek Lai / Lek Nam Phee fragments

Inserted into both parts ( head and bottom ) of the tongkat. Chau Khun Chan for example, inserted this path nar thang in almost all if his tongkats and even in his pen tongkat.  But again,  bear in mind that, some of Phor Than Kong’s and Chau Khun Chan’s tongkat does not require any pith / path nar thang. Why ? …….

“ Differ tongkat,  differ materials, differ method with differ khata akhoms,  for differ purposes. “

  As I mentioned earlier in my older posts “ Tongkat oh Tongkat “ and “ Secrets of The Tongkat Finally Revealed”. You must be more sensitive and selective while choosing the tongkat.  

Déjà vu,  Déjà vu, Déjà vu,  Déjà vu !

Do ask, ask, ask and ask before renting any, otherwise you will loose your 'blood & sweat money' to a specially designed and crafted  DECORATIVE WOOD !

Merely Sharing of Thought !

sabbe satta sukhita hontuk !
sadhu ! sadhu !

wie.sukhihotu11 ! 

1 comment:

  1. I just recently rented a tongkat from Wat Uttamaran Pasir Mas Kelantan made by LP Boon. Its the same as the on pictured in your other post.

    My question is I found that the head of the tongkat is loose. Can I open it and have a look inside then glue it back tightly or just leave it as it is? Reason I ask this is I'm afraid that if I do open it and have a look inside then seal it back will it lose it power?

    I am too am very novice collector and have heard so much about Tok Raja and Wat Uttamaran that is why I rented both a Pra Pita (RM299) and the tongkat (RM699) (bopth by LP Boon) on my 1st visit and would really hate to lose it power but also really curious about whats inside after reading your blog.

    Looking forward to your advise.