Unholy practices of an eye-blinking variety have led to Thai Buddhist monk Wirapol Sukphol being extradited from California to his home country. He denies eight charges relating to false advertising, statutory rape, tax evasion, drug use, false academic representation, money laundering, claiming to possess supernatural powers and manslaughter.
His story went viral in 2013 when images of him appeared with shaven head and orange robe, sitting in an executive jet. A subsequent Thai investigation uncovered a lifestyle of staggering decadence. $6m (£4.6m) in ten bank accounts was tracked down, as were 22 Mercedes Benz cars, a mansion in southern California, a large house in his home town with a giant replica of the famous Emerald Buddha statue in Bangkok’s royal palace, which he claimed contained nine tonnes of gold. There was evidence of sexual relationships with a number of women, one of whom claimed he had fathered a child when she was 15 years old, backed by DNA analysis.
Followers have described being beguiled by his soft, warm voice, and convinced by his claim to have supernatural powers – the ability to walk on water and talk to deities. Many still support him. The Thai’s love of superstition tempts them to donate generously to monks in the belief this will ensure greater fortune in the future. Monks often bless new cars or houses for good. Lottery tickets are sold inside temples. Last year several hundred Thailand’s monks were reprimanded for various misdemeanours and criminal acts – having sex, being in possession of drugs and pornography, using methamphetamine, raping a 14-year-old girl and procuring a 14-year-old boy for their abbot.
Sukphol was born 18 September 1979 and wanted to be a monk aged 5, though presumably not with all the above in mind at that stage.
He’s a Sun Saturn in Virgo which should be hard-working and diligent, though Virgo is an Earth sign which in the male of the species can be indulgent where the pleasures of the flesh are concerned; and Saturn in one of his guises is the goat-god of the orgy. His Sun Saturn square Neptune points to an idealistic though also neurotic streak. He also has Moon Jupiter in flamboyant Leo; and a ruthless Mars in Cancer square Pluto and in a high-octane square to Uranus. He liked walking on the wild side. His Mercury is conjunct Venus in Libra, which would give him a smooth charm.
His 9th Harmonic is strong – supposedly humanitarian, but often found in the charts of financial con men and pleasure-seekers. His wheel-of-fortune 10H is also marked which contains the seed of both rise and fall, the good and the bad. His 16H is also heavily aspected – which warns against catastrophes. ’Life as you know it might change completely. Sometimes this is self-inflicted, sometimes it is not.’
Years ago I read about a researcher studying religious gurus. He kept asking himself which were fakes and which genuine. Until he realised that was the wrong question. The right question was what proportion in each was genuine and what was fraud. This one had clearly moved so far from his monastic training that he was 100% on the downside.
He looks completely blocked at the moment with his Solar Arc Saturn square his Mars; tr Pluto trine his Saturn, square his Pluto and sextile his Uranus. Tr Pluto moves to oppose his Mars in 2021/2022 which will be scary and cornered.