Killjoy scientist poo-poos Thai hermit’s supernatural power show

Photo via คุณท้าวศรีสุวรรณภิรมย์ภักดี

The video of a hermit showing off his supernatural powers by sitting in a large pan of boiling water has resurfaced after two years and gone viral. But, a killjoy scientist has dismissed the supernatural claim as nothing but smoke and mirrors.

The video featuring the hermit, also a Thai tattoo artist, standing and sitting in a giant wok of boiling water in the central province of Pathum Thani was posted on a Facebook page, Khun Tao Si Suwan Pirom Pak Dee ( คุณท้าวศรีสุวรรณภิรมย์ภักดี) on July 12 with the caption “Hermit soup.”

The video features a man in a tiger pattern robe, a traditional costume for a Thai hermit. He is sitting in the wok surrounded by what looks like noodles and vegetables. The pan is being heated over a campfire while the hermit sits and chants. Outside of the campfire sits followers and people praying. Watch the video here.

The purpose of the ceremony is unknown but many followers believed he was showcasing a hermit’s magical power.

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Thai netizens commented on the video saying, “Look at the pan. He will never feel the heat with that thick pad,” “Does that look like a soldier in the front row?” “How about the taste? Is the soup delicious?” and “His meat looks a little bit tough,” among others.

The Facebook page admin revealed to the media that the video was posted two years ago in 2020 but admitted he found it funny and reposted it.

The hermit’s compound is located in the Diamond Ville in the Ku Kot sub-district, Lam Luk Ka district in Pathum Thani province, but is now abandoned.

A 25 year old woman, who lives nearby, admitted she was a follower of the hermit and had joined in many ceremonies. She said the hermit was kind and loved to help people, but he died last year due to a congenital disease. The woman also added that the hermit’s fortune-telling skill was very accurate.

The woman said the ceremony featured in the video was held annually and hermits from other provinces joined them. She added that many foreigners came from China and Japan just to get tattoos from the man. She also admitted she believed he had supernatural powers.

Weerachai Phutdhawong, a professor from Kasetsart University, who specialises in organic chemistry, dismissed the ceremony as a trick. He said the ceremony could be clarified with scientific knowledge.

Weerachai revealed the hermit might have put water at the bottom of the pan and oil at the top of the pan and those two liquids have different boiling points.

Water has a boiling point of 100 degrees Celsius, while oil has a boiling point of 200 degrees Celsius. When the water boils, the bubbles are pushed up into the oil on the top making it look like boiling water.

He said the oil would have been a bearable 30 to 40 degrees Celsius.

There’s always someone who spoils the fun.


Central Thailand News

Petch Petpailin

Petpailin, or Petch, is a Thai translator and writer for The Thaiger who focuses on translating breakingThai news stories into English. With a background in field journalism, Petch brings several years of experience to the English News desk at The Thaiger. Before joining The Thaiger, Petch worked as a content writer for several known blogging sites in Bangkok, including Happio and The Smart Local. Her articles have been syndicated by many big publishers in Thailand and internationally, including the Daily Mail, The Sun and the Bangkok Post. She is a news writer who stops reading news on the weekends to spend more time cafe hopping and petting dwarf shrimp! But during office hours, you can find Petch on LinkedIn and you can reach her by email at

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