Wizzardo Sayadaw U. Kowida

Inscription at the Man-Made Cave of Victory

Head Master of Nagama Mountain
Weizzardo Sayadaw Bhaddanta U. Kowida,
the accomplishment of life prolongation by undergoing the transformation by fire
in the man-made Cave of Victory.

During the tenure of Senior General Than Shwe, Chairman of the State Peace and Development Council, at 9:08 p.m. on Saturday, the inauspicious (Pyathada) day, 3rd December 1994 A.D. (1st waxing month of Natdaw, 1356 M.E.), a loud sound from the earth came from the Cave of Victory, followed by the words "By the Blessing of Buddha, Victory." The sounds echoed through the area. That was at the time when the 1026 years old Iron Weizzar Sayadaw U. Kowida completed the ceremony undergoing transformation by fire process, thereby gaining longevity of life.

He was born Maung Kan Thar to U. Thar Aung and Daw Yin May of Khante village West of Shwebo town in Myanmar, Era 330 (968 A.D.), during the reign of King Kyaung Hpyu, also known as King Kunzaw of Bagan.

He became a Buddhist monk at the Newthar Monastery and in 1027 A.D. (389 M.E.) at the age of 59, monk's life 39, he became an Iron Weizzar through the teaching of his Master Ariya Siddha Ashin Upagote. He resided at Nagama Mountain and founded the residence of Weizzars. At the age Weizzar of 966 he had completed the ceremony as related above. He was to initiate this practice but said that he would not "eat the spoon of elders", and allowed Sayadaw U. Pandita and Sayadaw U. Uttamakyaw to undergo the transformation by fire process first.

On that evening at 5 p.m., together with Botaw Bo Htun Aung, the Sayadaw came to the Aungtawmu Monastery and directed the disciples at the ceremony to be performed. By 6 p.m. on the Ashin Upagote pond, South of the Cave of Victory, on a Karaweik Bird crested boat lit with colored lights, a golden Buddha Image on a throne of elephants had been placed. This was surrounded by three homage offerings containing a precious medicine bars on each. The ignition bar was placed in special homage as an offering inside the Cave of Victory. Between the cave and the pond, Major Zaw Win and friends from Yangon and U. Ba Yi and friends of Mandalay, altogether over 300, sat on bamboo couches. Separated by the walkway, Dr. Sein Yi marked out a string of Dhamma flags on the demarcation line, made with popped corn.

The Say Kuttara Sayadaw and nine other Sayadaw commenced inside the cave and recited protective chanting to cover those inside and outside. The Sayadaw from Toungoo U. Rawi Nanda gave the nine precepts to the audience and at 7:45 p.m. the Sayadaw U. Kowida arrived by his glory inside the demarcation circle where his disciples stood. He gave the nine precepts again and after completing his preaching, he asked Saturday born Sanathar Sayadaw to open the door of the Cave of Victory. On a place laid with one hundred sticks of thanakhar wood, the disciples from two groups scattered white and yellow popped corn on him and shouted: "The Sayadaw U. Kowida ceremony to transformation through fire is victorious."

The Sayadaw placed two packets of lucky charms on the shrine inside the cave. Then, Sanathar Sayadaw U. Tillaw Kheinda took the ignition bar from the homage offering inside the cave and locked the iron door. He then gave the keys to U. Ko Lay and U. Kan Hla. After this, thirty men chosen from each group threw red popped corn through the eleven inch holes at the West side of the man made Cave of Victory, shouting as before.

At about 8:30 p.m. U A One, U. Hla Myin and U. Gyi took the three medicinal bars from the Karaweik bird crested boat and gave then to the men chosen to throw them. At the auspicious hour of 9:08 p.m., the Sanathar Sayadaw U. Tillaw Kheinda threw the ignition bar from the homage offering into the round hole as mentioned earlier, and the earth road and the door jam were broken. To the amazement of everyone, the Sayadaw was seen seated facing East in the lotus position, in the middle of flaming sticks of thanakhar wood, and with his robe covering over his head.

Then U. Min Maung of Mawlamyaine, U. Myo Lwin of Yangoon, and U. Sann Tun of Mandalay, with a time separation of 2, 3, and 5 minutes, threw the medicinal bars taken from the barge into and through the round hole, shouting as before. While others tried to lock the doors, again twenty men threw Eugenia leaves and Holy Water into the hole whilst shouting as before. At about 10 p.m., the ceremony of life prolongation by undergoing the transformation through fire process was complete.

After seventy four days, on Monday the 13th February 1995 (14th waxing day of month of Tabodwe, 1356 M.E.) at night, thousands of disciples waited around the cave of victory. As the cave door opened, the Sayadaw U. Kowida gave packages of lucky charms to Major Zaw Win and U. Ba Yi. Then with disciples led by Sayadaw U. Pandita, they covered the Sayadaw U. Kowida with four white umbrellas and carried him around.

There were so many people present he was carried back to the cave a second time, so that all could see. Only at the third attempt at about 1:30 a.m., could he be successfully taken away from the cave to preach to the many disciples. Then he left in U. Khin Maung Thet's car. By his power, on the way he spontaneously disappeared from the car and returned to his abode on Nagama Mountain. Thus was completed the ceremony of the Weizzardo Sayadaw U. Kowida.

The abode inscription is found on the Southern side of the man made Cave of Victory of the Head Master U. Kowida at Pauk Kyaung, Mebegon village. It was written by U. Thein Oo, U. Zaw Tun, U. Than Tun and Mayor Zaw Win. It was painted in Myanmar script by an artist on the 1st of January 2000, by the donors U. Tun Kyi and his wife Daw Thein Thein Aye.