Located in the mountains approximately one hundred and twenty kilometres from the city of Bangkok, the Monastery of Thamkrabok has been offering detoxification and rehabilitation to those addicted to harmful substances since 1959.
Over this period the Abbot and his monks have saved thousands of their countrymen from the long-term effects of drug addiction. The treatment is provided to Thai addicts for minimal payment or reward as part of the goodwill of the Monastery in supporting it’s people.
The occasional European, familiar with local custom was also offered the treatment and it was found that the same levels of success were achieved with non-Asian addicts.
The Abbot and Monks operating the program have proven that no addict is beyond redemption. Every addict leaving Thamkrabok after completing this radical course has been detoxified with none of the normal side effects. They stress that this course is a chance at a drug free future but the long-term result lies in the will of the addict. They are provided with the opportunity of a second start at life.
Nobody is claiming to have a miracle cure for the problem of drug and alcohol addiction. If the addict has no desire to beat his or her addiction they are not welcome at Thamkrabok.
Addicts travelling to Thamkrabok are required to comply with the rules of the Monastery. Should they fail to do so they are liable to be transported directly to the airport under escort and returned to their point of departure.
It has been said that the “Thamkrabok Monastery in Thailand runs the toughest drug rehabilitation regime in the world”.
The Thamkrabok program is based on taking SAJJA (a sacred vow) not to use intoxicating substances. Sajja is a sacred act that, if you believe in it, will connect you with your will power and with something "beyond". Sajja is there for everybody; it is not limited to any specific religion or belief system. The Sajja is supported by Thamkrabok’s unique herbal medicine that generates a very real and very rapid detoxification.
According to Luangpor Charoen (the Abbot) the physical detoxification is only 5% of the treatment.
“You must do the remaining 95% of the work in your mind and through your actions.”
Addicts can only be admitted at Thamkrabok for treatment ONCE.
If you break your Sajja you cannot undergo a second treatment.
You must have a strong belief in your Sajja. This is of the utmost importance.
Before you travel to Thailand you must ask yourself 2 questions: -
(1) Do I want to travel to Thamkrabok voluntarily, completely of my own choice?
(2) Do I really want to stop taking drugs/alcohol?
If you cannot honestly say ”YES” without hesitation to both questions, then it is better that you wait until you are serious about getting well. As one monk famously said “We want only warriors… victims need not apply”.
You should not go to Thamkrabok until you are certain that you truly wish to be free from your addiction(s) and you are 100 per cent committed to being drug/alcohol free.
If you are certain that Thamkrabok offers the right treatment for you there are 2 options available: -
(1) Making your own way
It is possible to make your own arrangements to travel to Thailand.
You must let the monastery know, in advance, when you will be arriving by email to firstname.lastname@example.org then follow the directions to Thamkrabok. (Print the picture page to show that you are going to Thamkrabok Monastery)
Thamkrabok Monastery gives it’s services FREE.
There is no cost for treatment but you must pay for your food, drink, cigarettes, candy, toiletries etc. ‘Real money’ is not allowed in the treatment compound so you must exchange your cash for ‘Thamkrabok money’. Non-Thai addicts must deposit the equivalent of Thai Baht 200 per day at the Admissions Office before treatment. Each day of your stay you will be given back the equivalent of Thai Baht 200 in ‘Thamkrabok money’. These coupons can only be spent inside the treatment compound. This is quite enough ‘money’ to buy your food and drink etc each day of your stay.
The Monastery will not ask for a donation at any time but you may give whatever you wish at the end of your treatment.
It is recommended that you stay for a minimum of 10 days. The longer you can stay the better (up to a maximum of 28 days).
(2) Private Organisations
Sometimes it is not possible or in deed desirable for individuals to travel alone and unprepared to Thailand. There are a number of private organisations, which are independent from the Monastery, that can facilitate treatment at Thamkrabok. These independent organisations provide varying levels of service to addicts usually at a cost. Some organisations will provide basic unescorted travel arrangements to the Monastery while others will provide a fully escorted detoxification trip to Thailand including before and after services. Thamkrabok Monastery cannot enter into disputes between individuals and their chosen independent service organisation.
TARA Detox is a private organisation offering a complete service to addicts or sponsoring agencies. Basic instruction in Anapanasati meditation practice (breathing with mindfulness) is incorporated in to each program. Our programs are intended to prepare and support clients before, during and after the rapid herbal detoxification at the Thamkrabok Monastery in Thailand.