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Most Venerable Phra Prom Mongkol Vi (Ehrw. Phra Ajarn Tong Sirimangalo)

Wat Buddhapiyavararam was founded at the suggestion of Venerable Ajarn Tong in 1997 and was under his spiritual guidance during his lifetime. Venerable Ajarn Tong was born in Thailand in 1923 and dedicated his life to the practice and transmission of Vipassana meditation (insight/ mindfulness meditation based on the four foundations of mindfulness). He ordained as a novice in 1934 and received full monastic ordination in 1944.

Since 1991, he has been the abbot of Wat Phradhatu Sri Chom Tong Voravihara near Chiang Mai in Thailand – a large and well-known meditation monastery, which also has an international meditation centre for foreign practitioners. He was also the supreme Vipassana meditation master of the northern region of Thailand and one of the most highly respected meditation teachers in the whole country.

His commitment to interfaith understanding and his positive charisma have earned him high esteem. In 2009, Venerable Ajarn Tong was appointed the highest monk of Chiang Mai Province. In 2011, he received the honorary title "Agga Maha Kamatthanacariya" from the Burmese government, which, according to the name, acknowledges his outstanding importance as a meditation teacher.

On 13 December 2019, Venerable Ajarn Tong left this world at the age of 96. We remain in gratitude for his generous and tireless cultivation of Buddhism and meditation practice, which has helped so many people in this world.

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