The center, located in Kaeng Sopha in the Wang Thong district of Phitsanulok, is approximately 427 kilometers north of Bangkok and about 462 kilometers southeast of Chiang Mai. The terrain of the Kaeng Sopha sub-district consists of a high plateau and mountain ranges. National reserve forests cover 70% of the area. Kaeng Sopha is situated in a traditional, rural farming area and is well-known for its abundant produce and natural beauty. The nearby village, Ban Sap Phrai Wan, has a vibrant market.
Dhamma Ābhā, “Radiance of Dhamma“, founded in 1999, was the second Vipassana center in Thailand. The land, originally a tamarind farm, was donated by meditators and is situated on a lush green plateau. In the background, towering up in the east is the Nok Krayang Range, part of Khao Krayang National Reserve Forest. The center itself, located in the central part of the 50-acre property, was built in modern Thai-style architecture. Flowering shrubs, trees, and a small lake surround the center and create a peaceful and pleasant environment for meditation.
The first 10-day course was conducted on 17 July 1999. The original facilities consisted of a dining hall, a teachers’ residence/mini hall, and one men’s and two women’s residences with two bathhouses. The meditation hall was previously located in the current Women’s Residence B. Gradually, the center began expanding to meet the growing demand of students from all over the world. Many new buildings were added, including a center office, a kitchen, a bookstore, meditation hall and meditation cells for 110 students; in addition, additional residences were built for men and women separately, consisting of private rooms with en-suites. The mini hall, used for the English discourse and the meditation hall were expanded to accommodate more students. Two teachers’ residences were added later.
Presently, the center is able to accommodate 74 women and 36 men. The center offers regular 3-day, 10-day, 20-day, and Satipaṭṭhāna Courses during the year, as well as an annual Teacher’s Self Course (TSC). In addition to these courses, one-day Ānāpānasati Courses are being offered to children on a regular basis.
There is a strong network of meditators from Phitsanulok, who have given invaluable service and support to the center. The center also attracts people from all over Thailand as well as different parts of the world.