Lost in the Midst of Time

Lost in the Midst of Time

This is a very interesting documentary about the discovery of the author of one Dhamma book in Thai, who turned out not to be one of the most famous monastics in Thai Buddhism of the 20th century, as was previously believed, but a forgotten Thai lay woman, Yai Wisetsiri.

The film was made by Dr. Martin Seeger, Associate Professor of Thai Studies at Leeds University, and Khun Nari Charaschanyawong, an independent Thai researcher, and follows their adventures in tracking down the real author of the book, and the other books she was responsible for.

The subject in itself is of great interest of course as it shows how famous names being applied to works will often propel them into a position they wouldn’t have if an unknown name had been attached, and that regardless of the quality of the writing.

The film follows the researchers as they uncover clues in dusty libraries, travel to places associated with the author, meet people who had known her, and find other lost works by the same author.

Along the way they also speak to luminaries of Thai Buddhism like Ajahn Jayasaro and Phra Paisal Visalo; meet some of the learned Mae Chis working in various educational institutes, such as Ass. Prof. Dr. Supapan Na Bangchang, Ass. Prof. Dr. Kritsana Ruksuchan, and others.

The film is in Thai, with English subtitles.

 

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