The Santi Asoke ((Pali) (Thai: สันติอโศก (อะโศก)) literally Peaceful Asoke) sect of Theravada Buddhism was established by a former television entertainer and songwriter Phra Bodhirak after he "declared independence from the Ecclesiastical Council in 1975". He had originally ordained within a monastery recognized by the Thai Sangha, but soon left with a small following in order to create this heterodox group, which he sees as a mixture of both Therevada and Mahayana Buddhism. Described by Donald Swearer as "a radical sectarian movement" that "reflects the forest tradition's ideals of simplicity", the tradition also claimed an early influence from Buddhadasa, which it later rejected.
Samana Phothirak was once a Buddhist monk of Thammayutika Nikai Sect, but his preceptor refused to take care of him after finding he had repeatedly breached the Buddhist doctrines. Phothirak then resorted to Maha Nikai Sect at Wat Nong Krathum (วัดหนองกระทุ่ม), Changwat Nakhon Pathom. As he still repeatedly contravened the doctrines, the Thai Sangha (Community of Thai monks) requested the Supreme Sangha Council (SSC) to look into the case. Several inquisitorial panels were set up to investigate the monks' complains and a decision was made that the SSC should exercise the authority under the Sangha Act, BE 2505 (1962), section 27, to laicise Phothirak. On June 10, 1989, Ariyawongsakhatayan, Supreme Patriarch and SSC President, commanded Phothirak to leave monkhood within seven days.
Gautama Buddha or Siddhārtha Gautama Buddha (Sanskrit: सिद्धार्थ गौतम बुद्ध; Pali: Siddhattha Gotama), also called Sakyamuni, was a sage from the ancient Shakya republic, on whose teachings Buddhism was founded. He is also referred to as "the Buddha" or simply as "Buddha."
Buddha means "awakened one" or "the enlightened one." "Buddha" is also used as a title for the first awakened being in an era. In most Buddhist traditions, Siddhartha Gautama is regarded as the Supreme Buddha (P. sammāsambuddha, S. samyaksaṃbuddha) of our age, Gautama Buddha may also be referred to as Shakyamuni Buddha, Śākyamuni (Sanskrit: शाक्यमुनि "Sage of the Śākyas") or "The Awakened One of the Shakya Clan."
Gautama taught a Middle Way compared to the severe asceticism found in the Sramana (renunciation) movement common in his region. He later taught throughout regions of eastern India such as Magadha and Kośala.
The time of Gautama's birth and death is uncertain: most historians in the early 20th century dated his lifetime as circa 563 BCE to 483 BCE, but more recent opinion dates his death to between 486 and 483 BCE or, according to some, between 411 and 400 BCE. However, at a specialist symposium on this question held in 1988 in Göttingen, the majority of those scholars who presented definite opinions gave dates within 20 years either side of 400 BCE for the Buddha's death, with others supporting earlier or later dates. These alternative chronologies, however, have not yet been accepted by all other historians.