| 24 April 2024, Wednesday |

Buddhist monk chops off his own head to please Buddha

A monk in Thailand beheaded himself using a guillotine as an offering to Buddha in the hope he would reincarnate as a “higher spiritual being,” the MailOnline reported on Monday.

Thammakorn Wangpreecha had reportedly been planning this strange ritual sacrifice for over 5 years.

The 68-year-old monk believed that making the offering to Buddha would bring him good luck in the afterlife – a belief known in Buddhism as “making merit”.

On April 15, the monk was found dead at the Wat Phu Hin temple in Nong Bua Lamphu province, in north-eastern Thailand.

His nephew Booncherd Boonrod found the body and said that a slab of marble had also been inscribed with his uncle’s plans.

“In the letter it was stated that chopping his head off was his way of praising Buddha”, Booncherd said. In the letter, he said that he had been planning this for 5 years now.

“His wish was to offer his head and his soul so that the Lord could help him reincarnate as a higher spiritual being in the next life.”

Reports suggested the monk used a makeshift guillotine next to a Buddhist God statue so that the deity figure would appear to be holding his head after it had been chopped.

The monk, who had served the temple for 11 years, had allegedly previously informed the other priests that he would be leaving the monkhood but he did not tell them about the guillotine.

Police took the body from the temple to the hospital so medics could perform a post-mortem examination and record the cause of death before returning it to the family for funeral rites.

After the monk’s death, nearly 300 local devotees arrived at the temple to prepare his body for a rite.

The body was laid inside a coffin while his head placed in a jar before his followers and family members carried his remains to the forest to be burned.

“He had been planning this for 5 years now. He fulfilled his goal and met enlightenment,” said Yu, one of Thammakorn’s followers.

Despite some followers lauding the deceased monk, the National Office of Buddhism asked the local government to help them explain to residents in the area that such act was not being encouraged in the religion.