The legendary Khun Paen lived between 1491-1529. He is the Ayuthaya warrior living some 450 years ago. His name later became the name of a kind of votive tablets found at Wat Bangkrang, Suphanburi Province, about a century ago. Khun Paen was born in Suphanburi Province but grew up in the close bordered Kanchanaburi Province, where the world wide well-known “Bridge over River Kwai” situated.
Khun Paen Image in a shrine in Kanburi
He was a disciple of Archan Kong, a magic-expert guru monk, for magical studies. By his skillful fighting, he was appointed by the king to be Khun or a high ranking military officer.
Phra Khun Paen Seated Amulet
The Amulet is the most famous “Phra Khun Paen Love & Attraction Amulet”. Note that it is not the image of Lord Buddha. It is only the image of young Khun Paen as an ordained monk. Thai legends believe that even as a monk who discards worldly desires, Phra Phlai Kaeo (Khun Paen’s childhood name) was attracted to many young women.
His biography was made famous by poetic authors of the early Rattanakosin period. Now the legend of Khun Paen is a part of Thai literature.
The Story of Khun Paen
Phlai Kaeo (who later is given the title, Khun Paen), and Nang Phim Philalai (who later changes her name to Wanthong) are childhood friends in Suphanburi. Phlai Kaeo is handsome and intelligent, but poor because the king has executed his father and seized their property. He enters the monkshood as a novice to get educated, excelling at military skills and love magic.
He was a disciple of Archan Kong, a magic-expert guru monk, for magical studies.
Khun Chang Wealth Amulet
Khun Chang is ugly and stupid, but rich and well-connected at the Ayutthaya court. He owns many gambling dens and some fresh markets in Ayutthaya. In later Rattanakosin period when the poets made the story of Phra Khun Paen legendary, his image also became an amulet for wealth.
By age 15, Phim is the most beautiful girl of Suphanburi. She meets Phlai Kaeo when putting food in his alms bowl at Songkran (Thai New Year). Sparks fly. They have a passionate affair, with him shuttling between the temple and her bedroom. Khun Chang is also smitten by Wanthong. He competes for her using his wealth and status.
He offers to give her mother Phim’s weight in gold. After Phlai Kaeo and Phim are married, Khun Chang maneuvers the king to send Phlai Kaeo on military service, and then claims he is dead. When Phlai Kaeo returns victorious, Khun Chang plots to have him banished from Ayutthaya for negligence on government service.
Phim (now changed her name to Wanthong) resists Khun Chang. But when Phlai Kaeo (now Khun Paen) returns from war with another wife, they have a jealous quarrel. Wanthong goes to live with Khun Chang, enjoying his devotion and the comforts afforded by his wealth.
When Khun Paen’s second wife, Laothong, is taken into the palace by the king, Khun Paen regrets abandoning Wanthong. He breaks into Khun Chang’s house at the dead of night and takes Wanthong away.
At first she is reluctant to leave her comfortable existence, but the passion rekindles, and they flee to an idyllic but frugal sojourn in the forest.
Khun Chang told the king that Khun Paen is plotting a rebellion. The king sends an army which Khun Paen defeats, killing two of its officers. A warrant is issued for his arrest. When Wanthong becomes pregnant, Khun Paen decided to leave the forest and give himself up. At the trial, the charges of rebellion are disproved, and Khun Chang was heavily fined.
Khun Paen angers the king by asking for the release of Laothong. He is jailed, and festers in prison for around twelve years. Khun Chang abducts Wanthong and they again live together in Suphanburi.
Wanthong gives birth to Phlai Ngam, her son with Khun Paen. When Phlai Ngam is eight, Khun Chang tries to kill him. Phlai Ngam escapes to live in Kanchanaburi with his grandmother who teaches him from Khun Phaen’s library.
Khun Paen Walking
Phra Khun Paen as Governer of Kanchanaburi
When the kings of Ayutthaya and Chiangmai quarrel over a beautiful daughter of the King of Vientiane, Phlai Ngam volunteers to lead an army to Chiang Mai, and successfully petitions for Khun Paen’s release. They capture the King of Chiangmai, and return with the Vientiane princess and a great haul of booty. Khun Paen now gains status as the governor of Kanchanaburi. Phlai Ngam is appointed Phra Wai, an officer in the royal pages.
Khun Chang gets drunk at Phra Wai’s wedding, and the old rivalry returns. Phra Wai abducts Wanthong from Khun Chang’s house, prompting Khun Chang to petition the king for redress.
At the subsequent trial, the king demands that Wanthong decide between Khun Chang and Khun Paen. She cannot, and is dumb-struck. The king orders her execution. Phra Wai pleads successfully with the king for a reprieve, but the order arrives fractionally too late to avoid her execution.
The Magical power of Khun Paen
Based on old legends, Khun Paen was handsome and very attractive to ladies. Although, he had many wives, but still many ladies fell in love with him. Khun Paen had magical knowledge. He used magic to make himself invulnerable and unseen to enemies, to change the marching track of the enemies to become labyrinthine field, and to change leaves of the tree to become wasps to sting enemies etc.
Khun Paen is also a master in mantra or formulas with supernatural power. They are used for such purposes as stunning enemies, transforming his body into other forms, opening locks and chains, putting everyone else to sleep, and converting sheaves of grass into invulnerable spirit warriors. Khun Paen also uses love formulas to captivate women, and to allay the wrath of the king.
Khun Paen was also the first who created Guman Thong. He brought the dead baby from the womb of the dead Bua Klee, one of his wives, to the Temple chanting hall where the Buddha image is placed. The Temple and its outer area are so sacred place that no mighty ghosts or spirits can enter. Based on the legend descriptions, Khun Paen was chanting some sacred mantras to invoke the spirit of Guman Thong while burning the dead baby’s body on the fire.
Guman Thong Amulet
Guman Thong – The luck bringer Amulet
Guman Thong defended him against enemy spirits, acts as spy in gambling rounds, tips him at cock fights, got for him money and transported him at speed.
From above miracle Khun Paen story, many Archans (Masters) or monks like to make Khun Paen as charming and metta (love and attraction) amulets. According to some comments and reviews by the Archans (Masters), monks and local Thai people, Khun Paen amulet generally is best for:
Proof against any type of deadly weapons.
Ability to attract the opposite sex naturally.
Get to be liked, trusted, respected and admired by everyone.
Get to develop indestructible confidence and courage.
Easier to ask for favor and help.
Gain the “upper hand” in business or career.
Successful in everything that your do.
Great luck and great charm.
Victories in all aspects of life.