DBSJeyaraj.com on Facebook

A Buddhist Monk and child abuse in London

Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on LinkedInShare on Google+Print this page

In Dambulla, Apr 20, 2012

by Dushy Ranetunge in London

This is a personal journey, which has touched our lives deeply and thus I will not pretend that it is an unbiased account. I have changed the names of the persons involved to attempt to safeguard the little privacy that they have.

In 2004, we purchased a home in a private gated compound in Winchmore Hill, North London. Our neighbour two doors next, was uncle Jine and aunty Serina, both Sri Lankans who had emigrated to the UK many decades ago.

They were both retired medical consultants, who had lived in the Midlands, and several stints in Sri Lanka, where they had returned several times to make their home unsuccessfully. They had three children, a son and two daughters. Two are leading medical consultants at British hospitals and the other is a GP.

We felt secure and happy at our new neighbourhood where our teenage children were growing up, as I had known this family from my childhood in Sri Lanka.

As neighbours now in London, we got on like a house on fire. Uncle Jine had difficulty in walking and I would pop over and have a glass of wine with him, and occasionally take him for a slow walk and he would tell me “putha, you go on, as I am slowing you down”. He loved to play the piano and sing and they were pillars of the “Sinhala-Buddhist” community in London, loved by all who knew them. They were frequent visitors and participants at the Buddhist temples and community charitable activities, raising funds for various charities in Sri Lanka.

Being senior medical consultants and respected in the community, our High Commission also used to regularly use them for their various activities as a “respectable” face of Sri Lanka in the UK.

A few year ago, we hosted uncle Jine’s birthday party in our home. Two of the children were present and as usual, uncle Jine serenaded us with his old Sinhalese songs, while playing our piano.

Within the next 12 months or so, while we were in Sri Lanka, we learnt that uncle Jine had passed away. We could not attend the funeral, which had been a grand community affair, extended to those who had served their community in the extraordinary manner that he had.

A few months later, we heard that a Buddhist monk had been charged in London, for sexually assaulting a little girl several decades ago. It was then that we learnt that the victim was Uncle Jine and Aunty Serina’s daughter, who was in our home for Uncle Jine’s last birthday party.

We were shocked.

We wondered why no action had been taken at the time. There could be many reasons, primarily among them would have been the fear of putting a small child through the legal process and even the destruction of any marriage prospects for the young girl. Perhaps the parents never knew what had happened and the girl kept quiet as has happened on many an instance.

The victim, is now a medical Consultant in a leading specialist hospital in London. She is married to an English doctor, who fully supported her through this terrible legal process, which ended on Monday with a verdict of the Buddhist monk being found guilty unanimously by the jury, of indecent assault of a minor.

It was when she was pregnant a few years ago, that she has decided to take action against the Buddhist monk, hoping that her unborn child will never have to face, the trauma that she had undergone for so many years in silence.

She had visited uncle Jine, and discussed it with him. When Aunty Serina came home, both of them had told her of their decision. Before he died, Uncle Jine had given a statement to the Metropolitian Police, child protection unit.

Several year ago, a distant relative, WJM Lokubandara who was speaker of the Sri Lankan parliament at the time, invited us to parliament for lunch and to his official residence for dinner. Although a relative, I had only met him a few times in my life, but I was impressed with his opinions. When questioned about the disrepute that Buddhist monks bring to Buddhism with their participation in politics, he said, that the monks robe is a “uniform” and that we respect the “uniform” and that there will always be many who abuse the “uniform”.

The Buddhist monk who has been found guilty in London of indecent assault of a minor, is in no way a blemish on Buddhism. It is simply an individual abusing his “uniform”. Buddhism is and will remain one of the greatest philosophies known to man, one of great tolerance and humanity. Unfortunately very little of this is practiced in Sri Lanka, where a certain fundamentalist Talibanism exists in its place, with its latest manifestation is to demolish mosques, in Anuradhapura and now an attempt in Dambulla.

What prompted me to write this article was the response of the Sri Lankan community to the charges of indecent assault against a Buddhist monk.

Except for a few enlightened minds, a vast majority perceived it as an assault on “Sinhala-Buddhism”. It has been alleged that several Sri Lankan Ministers, leading Buddhist monks including the head of a London Buddhist Vihare, several officials at our High Commission to London, a judge from the Western Province of Sri Lanka etc wrote letters to court in support of the monk. Aunty Serina and her family were marginalised, made to feel as if they were mounting an assault on “Sinhala Buddhism”

It was alleged that there were two other parties who had been sexually abused by the Monk. One came forward to give evidence but her evidence was not articulate. She was a teacher, also married to an Englishman. Her husband also supported her through the harrowing legal process. The other, did not want to come forward, understandable considering the bigoted mind frame of the community.

As the monk was found guilty, grown men were found crying. I was informed by a “Sinhala-Buddhist lawyer” and a relative, closely connected to the Monks’ temple, to be wary about writing anything because he feared for my life, as he explained to me “there were many who are prepared to die for their cause.”

It has been alleged that the Monk operates a children’s home in Gampaha. In light of the successful conviction it is not clear what procedures will be put in place to protect those children from abuse.

The Monk is likely to be deported to Sri Lanka after he serves his prison sentence, which will be delivered on Monday.

Since the offence was committed before the new legal recommendations on child abuse came into force it is expected to be milder.

The “Sinhala-Buddhist” community at large seems reeling from the verdict. Some who supported the Monk are beginning to have doubts. Some are trying to get the monk de-robed. Others are trying to prepare an appeal, but considering that the Judge bent over backwards to accommodate the Monk, it is unclear what legal or technical grounds could be found for an appeal, especially in light of the unanimous decision by the jury.

There was a grand Vesak celebration planned at the Monk’s temple this weekend, to welcome him back with a bang, but he is now in remand prison, awaiting sentencing.

While the general conversation of the “Sinhala-Buddhist” grouping is one of outrage and hurt, no one is focusing on the topic of child abuse and of evolving systems to challenge it.

Here in Britain there are various child protection policies and procedures in place. Schools and places that work with children are required to ensure that all persons that come into contact with children or even do ancillary work in places where children play and study are required to have an enhanced criminal records bureau check to be carried out.

They are required by law to have child protection policies and procedures, which are required to be reviewed regularly and policed in favour of the child. Unfortunately many Buddhist temples in London which operate Sunday schools do not follow these legal requirements and are operating outside the law, exposing children to abuse.

At a leading Buddhist temple in London, controlled by an old famous charity in Sri Lanka, these issues of child protection were raised at the management committee level in London, but were not taken seriously or dismissed. The Sri Lankan Charity which is supposed to “control” it from Sri Lanka seem unaware of these legal requirements in the United Kingdom. Whether it is being “controlled” or “administered” from Sri Lanka is also a big question mark, as according to UK charity law, if there is no effective “control/administration” from abroad, it is required to be registered in the UK, under UK charity legislation, thereby subjecting it to a more stricter regime.

It was in this prominent temple that this convicted monk first committed the offences of child abuse before being asked to leave the temple so many decades ago. Large numbers of children gather here every Sunday, to learn Sinhalese and Buddhism, but it is unclear as to how many of the monks and lay teachers who handle children have complied with British Law and carried out an enhanced Criminal Records Bureau check. It is unclear if there are any child protection policies and procedures in place, vigorously policed in favour of the child.

The culture in the community is one of familiar unaccountability, and more outrageously a certain tardiness even to meet the provisions of legislation in the United Kingdom.

Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on LinkedInShare on Google+Print this page

127 Comments

  1. Dear Dushy,
    Thank you for the information……there is no doubt about the freedom & Justice that prevail in the UK….. You expressed your affirmation of what former minister Lokubandara said about the Buddhist monk and the robe….
    The yellow robe is an indication of a follower of the teachings of the Lord Buddha….and working towards the freedom of the lost and spread the Word of BUDDHA….BAHUJANA HITHAYA…BAHUJANA SUKAYA……. the monk who wears that yellow robe primarily must develop a principled mind which qualifies him to be a person worthy of veneration…..Lord Buddha at no occasion stated that people should worship the ROBE only disregarding the wearer……it is a statement of convenience of modern day POLITICIANS and other elements in the society who engage Buddhists priests to achieve their ends…..escape the accusations and yet continue their under hand activities…..It is the wearer that matters not the Robe because he is the communicator… There are monks who curse & bless on people…it is that come out of the mouth that stinks the society if not disciplined….besides how can a buddhist monks engage in witch craft and places curses on people contrary to the buddhist teachings…..such thing does not come from the robes ……you have tried to justify that the robe would ensure the continuity of Buddhism….trust I have done my best to explain the reality…..the true pure Buddhism is long gone…..what we have at present is a perverted version……today what we hear is BAILA in the Temple and PIRITH in the Clubs….who is responsible is left for you to investigate …but you guess is as good as mine on this hard….very hard truth

  2. Dear Dushy,
    Thank you for the great piece of information……there is no doubt about the freedom & Justice that prevail in the UK….. However your affirmation of what former minister Lokubandara said about the Buddhist monk and the robe is like a gel for a person who suffers from bleeding piles….. The yellow robe is an indication of a follower of the teachings of the Lord Buddha working towards the freedom of the lost and spread the Word of BUDDHA…. advice kings on good governance….BAHUJANA HITHAYA…BAHUJANA SUKAYA….not to engage in worldly affairs while in ROBES…IF THAT WAS RIGHT THEN LORD BUDDHA WOULD HAVE CONQUERED THE WORLD… ….the monk who wears that yellow robe primarily must develop a principled mind leads a very simple life ..which qualifies him to be a person worthy of veneration…..Lord Buddha at no occasion stated that people should worship the ROBE only disregarding the wearer……it is a statement of convenience of modern day POLITICIANS and other elements in the society who engage Buddhists priests to achieve their ends…..escape the accusations and yet continue their under hand activities…..It is the wearer that matters not the Robe because he is the communicator… There are monks who curse & bless on people…it is that come out of the mouth that stinks the society if not disciplined….besides how can a buddhist monks engage in witch craft and places curses on people contrary to the buddhist teachings…..such thing does not come from the robes ……you have tried to justify that the robe would ensure the continuity of Buddhism….trust I have done my best to explain the reality…..the true pure Buddhism is long gone…..what we have at present is a perverted version……today what we hear is BAILA in the Temple and PIRITH in the Clubs….there are priests in colombo who are slective on visiting houses for alms..preferred menu…air conditioned quarters…accepting cash for pirikara…..who is responsible for all these is left for you to investigate …but you guess is as good as mine on this hard….very hard truth

  3. Fortunately the victim was a Sinhala Buddhist. Had it been a Tamil, the racial card would have been played well by the perpetrators. What is more sad is the way the learned Sinhalese in London handled this matter. How can we blame the ordinary Sinhalese then. Further, this is not something new in Sri Lankan privenas but the law and the society protects them in Sri Lanka.

  4. General Shavedra Silva and Pahalagama Somaratana, the chief incumbent of Thames Buddhist Vihara in Croydon should be deported to Sri Lanka.

  5. Hmmmmmm,

    What a way to get at nearly half a Billion followers of Buddhism, especially the 18 Million in Srilanka,who are celebrating the achievements of Lord Buddha for the 2556th time.

    It is amazing how this so called Buddhist British who is supposed to be in the land of Gentlemen keep picking on an isolated incident over and over again to insult the Buddhist clergy and the innocent, poor rural people in his own ex motherland.

    Although these Millions of Buddhist and their monks may not be aware, there are countries where major religious institutions have become insolvent or bankrupt by paying compensation to victims of sexual abuse by their clergy.

    To keep harping on this one incident makes it bleeding obvious that the aim here is totally and completely to insult, degrade and depict Sinhala Buddhists as feral just to please this gentleman’s cheer brigades, for obvious reasons.

  6. Those who are defending the convicted pedophile thero are protecting the man under the robe and not the robe. When you consider what happened in Dambulla the racist crooked chief monk and the monk who exposed himself in public are still robed and in position at the vihara. Why are the chief monks in Sri Lanka silent? Why haven’t these monks charged in a court of law? As the writer says any assault on the erring monks is sadly considered an assault on sinhala Buddhism by the Sinhala buddhist and that is the sorry state of affairs in Sri Lanka today.

  7. First of all Sinhalese Buddhists are in a wilderness to falsely assume they are the protectors of Buddhism! Many of them believe a certain god entrusted Sinhalese the duty to safeguard Buddhism for 5000 or so years! Another stupid idea of Sinhalese is that real unblemished and pure Buddhism is enshrined within Sinhalese Buddhists, with Sinhalese monks and within Sinhalese Buddhist Temples, that their way of religious observance comprising Bodi Pujas and countless other Pujas, chanting Gathas and Pansil etc. several times a day and at every auspicious or bad time , engaging in a gormandizing feast on foods during Wesak season coupled with submerging the whole country in a total Buddhist upheaval of Wesak Pandols, Thorans, Rukada Natum, Sariyuth Mugalan and whatnot sacred bone display and worthip etc. and the blaring grating noise of loudspeakers from every temple in the country preaching Sinhalese Buddhist Bana in an utter chaotic frenzy and island-wide noise pollution would ultimately lead them to Nirvana the ultimate goal and fulfillment of a Buddhist! What a hilarious idea! This is not to invoke insult on Sinhalese Buddhists-my birth certificate pasted that label on me too-but what is actually going on in the country in a vast stream and cycle of mechanical thoughtless mindless repetition of superstition! It requires further exploration why Sinhalese are fond of claiming certain attributes which they are not privy to. The Mahinda Rajapaksha Sinhalese Buddhist Government’s world’s largest zero casualty humanitarian rescue operation to free Tamil civilians from the clutches of LTTE is another claim Sinhalese love to associate themselves with however remote the truth be!

    The truth is that this brain-dead Sinhalese Buddhist labeled nation is being exploited by a herd of racketeer monks and politicians! With stupid religious and racial feelings implanted nurtured roused in the minds of this never questioning and criticizing thought-static nation these rouge monks, priests and politicians are having a jolly good time out there. The folly ignorance and unquestioning faith of a nation is the bliss of a handful of exploiters. Another human feeling these rogue monks make use of is fear. People are afraid of death and the hereafter and the monk comes along and say, “look, don’t worry, we will tell you what to do and guide you in your time of confusion sorrow and ignorance” whereas the reality is that the monk is as stupid as the layman with regard to what is really a religion or the profound human problems of fear, greed, hatred, death etc.

    Even a superficial association with Buddhism points to the fact that what Buddha has discovered and understood and expressed to the world is a most profound and sacred phenomenon which requires great contemplation honesty passion faith love and compassion questioning austerity silence and meditation to fathom and often requiring to devote one’s life through many reincarnations to the same cause. Such is the nature of this phenomenon in Buddhism and seeing what is happening around in the country can anybody say these Sinhalese Buddhists who pretend to be even more ardent Buddhists than Lord Buddha himself are really worth of calling them Buddhists?

    In this full moon Wesak Day with all this tom tom beating, loudspeaker blaring, noisy disco dancing by the Dansal gormandizing, noisy skeleton dancing I find no silence to meditate, no monk to guide and not sure what Lord Buddha said! And before venturing to find religion I see the whole system of existence in the country is on fire-no law, chaos everywhere, insecurity, escalating prices of goods, handful of privileged racketeers hoarding the whole wealth of the country, politicians and their goons law enforcement authorities judges and monks destroying the very democratic fabric of the country, the disciplined armed forces of the country abducting killing people and looting ancient treasures of our ancestors-a country stealing its own history and museum ostensibly by the head of the state! For such a nation of looters, plunderers and rogues where the collective majority still approves and upholds this regime because it has destroyed the LTTE devil and the Tamil and no qualms about the appalling situation in the country I call Sinhalese Buddhists! I am ashamed to be one, really!

  8. @ Kalu Albert stop uttering non-sense old man no one is insulting Buddhism here only condemning the ‘thugs and perverts’ in yellow robes and this is not an isolated incident either

    Tell me Albert how many Catholic priests have been convicted and shamed and yet none of the Christians talk of vested interests insulting Christianity its only people like you who talk this way

    also for your information Buddist priests have been behaving violently since 1948

    SWRD was assassinated by Somarama thero and the plot was hatched by the womanising monk Buddharakitha thero

    we had the Dambulla incident where the monks behaved like vile thugs

    We had the Mihitale priest arrested for child abuse (http://www.newsfirst.lk/english-news/index.php?view=news_more&id=2248)

    We had the JHU monks doing business and behaving in a racist manner

    the list goes on on and on ………… and you have the gall to say its an isolated incident huh albert!

  9. Thank you Dushy for this article which gives this whole sordid affair its true face. A person charged for an offence on a minor.
    As a Christian I can assure you that incidents of this nature will not effect the respect we have for Budhism or the Lord Budha. As you know many Christian priests have also been convicted on child abuse.
    Thank you for this information.

  10. To avoid confusion and to give respect to all the monks around the world, it is better to change the title as ‘A SRI LANKAN Buddhist Monk and child abuse in London’.

  11. According to BBC News, these are the details of this incident. I do not know why if this can be accessed not included in the main article.

    Buddhist monk charged with raping girl in 1970s.
    Pahalagama Somaratana Thera has been charged on four counts of sexual abuse, police said.
    A Buddhist monk has been charged with raping an underage girl in the 1970s, the Metropolitan police has said.
    Pahalagama Somaratana Thera, chief incumbent of Thames Buddhist Vihara, Croydon, has been charged with four counts of sexual abuse, police said.
    The alleged rape and three counts of indecent assault occurred in Chiswick, west London, in 1977 and 1978.

    The 65-year-old from Dulverton Rd, Croydon, will appear on bail at Feltham Magistrates’ Court on 23 September.

    There was no immediate response from Thames Buddhist Vihara, which is one of the major Sri Lankan Buddhist temples in London.

  12. A man in a robe and position of authority abuses a child. This is not the first and unlikely to be the last time this happens.

    It can be attributed in some ways to 60 years of turmoil. The poverty, lawlessness and lack of ethics in the general population could manifest in these kinds of ways. Although at the end of the day its just another fallible man wearing a yellow coloured robe. It can happen to anyone in any part of the world.

    Fortunately being a Buddhist I can shed some light why this happens. The monk lacked discipline of mind allowed his thoughts to rule over his actions. Now he suffers Vipaka as a result his ill deeds. The child suffered as a result of karmic deeds from a previous literation. I can only have pity on both parties. The child in particular must let go of this hurt by detaching from it. The only way she can achieve this is by forgiving the monk. That will be her salvation.

  13. Thank you Dushy for you brave report on a child abuse despite the threat to your life by Buddhist extremists.
    In western countries no one can escape from the law of the country including the President. Former US Presidents Bill Clinton, Andrew Johnson, Richard Nixon and Vice-Presidential adviser I. Lewis “Scooter” Libby and Media Mogul Lord Conrad Black just came out of Jail, all on obstruction of justice charges.

    Unfortunately in Srilanka, politicians carry Law and order in their hands and also they try to influence their dirty politics in foreign soil too as such in this case. Religion is nothing but a drug, which is very well proven in Srilanka as the failure to address the grievances of the minorities mainly due to the influence of Buddhist extremists including many Buddhist monks with their participation in local politics.
    I was not surprised to hear that even many Buddhist extremists among Sinhala intellectuals support the Buddhist monk in the name of religion (Buddhism), despite it was proven in the court that the monk committed a crime. It is exactly how these social group of people influence the local politics in Srilanka, which fuelling the social, political and economical injustice to minorities and lead the country towards the path of destruction and chaos since the so called independence.

    I hope these Buddhist extremists will realize the current global political and economical trend and make meaningful contribution to the betterment of society rather destruction for self and people around them wherever they live.

  14. Dushy,
    Without trying to focus on this specific horrific act, and commenting on what you wrote about the response of the Sinhala-Buddhist community, is it any different to the reactions of the countless catholic congregations through out the world that suddenly found that their beloved parish priests had been abusing their children? The reaction was the same. Some wanted the priests nailed to a cross while others tried to blame the kids and somehow justify the guilty priest’s actions.

    What I am trying to say is that the way the London Sinhala-Buddhist community reacted is basically the same way any religious congregation probably would react. I am not condoning it in any way, I am just stating how a group of people will behave in such a circumstance.

    As for that well worn argument put out by many Buddhists, “we are worshipping the robe and not the person in it”, that argument is getting very tiresome. That can be true only if we Buddhists have the courage to throw out from the order any one found desecrating the robe. There are too many thugs, drunks, racketeers and paedophiles hiding behind the robe for me to say that “I worship the robe and not the person wearing it”.

  15. Thanks for this touching article. It brought tears to my eyes.

    This happens in very religious community to include the Tamil Hindu community of my own. I see countless articles in the Western press of all the cases in the Cathilic churches too. This include some wanting the Vatican to be directly responsible and taking them to court.
    I wish the commentaors like kalu wouldnt play racial politics with this.

    I have a sister of mine who was abused as a child by a family friend. Our parents pushed the issue aside.This has caused soo much grief to my sister ( partly of what happened and partly because our family decided to turn a blind eye onto it) She is happily married with two kids now. But she still suffers from the effects and resentment towards our parents especially for not protecting her.. I salute Uncle jine, his wife, the abused daughter and her husband for standing by her and getting the wraTH OF ones community.
    This happens in religious places of all denominations in SL. But i cant imagine how they will ever be given any justice. CAn you imagine a famous Moulavi, Guru, Budhist Priest or Christian Father being brought to justice in SL. The commnities would go up in arms. The Budhists shall say it is an attack on Sinhala Budhism and the rest will say an attack on minnorities. I am so gald the victim lived in the West where there is in recent times some mechanisms ( though not perfect) to deal with such acts.

  16. Thank you for your enlightening article and putting a human face on an ongoing problem in many religions all over the world, especially those that demand celibacy.

    I wish people realize that those who they trust and believe in also have human weaknesses and when these impact on the lives of others it is doubly destructive. It is a shame a clearly guilty person fought his way through the court system, thinking he can win, when there has been sufficient allegations in the past about his conduct. So it is not the first!!

    As far as the whole Sinhala Buddhist saga is concerned, it is just a political gimmick to keep a few people in power and the rest completely fooled. Buddhism is not the sole preserve of the Sinhala it is a world philosophy open to all to adhere to.

    So as far as I am concerned there are monks and monks, and we need to look at an individual and decide who we should use as a teacher to help us through our faith. It is difficult when one we trust lets us down.

    I just hope we in Sri Lanka will find that through time we will have more who adhere to Lord Buddhas teachings and less who do not. At the moment it is more who DO NOT.

    The philosophy will live on whatever happens to the Sinhala Buddhist and as far as the latter is concerned it is not a significant event for the well being of the faith if they survive or disappear. The bigotry of the this small minority does not have a future.

  17. Hats off to the victim to come out after all these years to seek justice. Having a British husband helped as she was encouraged by her British husband. I doubt if she would have taken this course of action if her husband was a Sri Lankan for the same reason she did not act while her father was still living.

    In Sri Lanka the monk would have gone scot free and even accused the victim of consenting to the act.

    Sri Lankan brand of Buddhism is different and crude. A monk with saffron robe thinks he is above the law and even above Buddha and that he has the license to commit any crime such as rape, inciting racial hatred,leading mobs on a rampage of violence etc. The blame for this rest squarely on the shoulders of successive Sri Lankan politicians. The Sinhalese leaders of this country have used the saffron robed person, a genuine monk or a masquerading thug for political purposes. The country will pay a hefty price for this I fear we have not seen the worse yet based on the recent reported events in Sri Lanka.

  18. Many have responded this as a bad name for Buddhism – this is not. But, it is a bad name for the ones who practice it – as is happening now.
    Please believe in what Buddha taught us – not what the politicians are using the Buddhist name for.
    Whether we pray to the ‘robes’ or what the Priest is set to behave as an example of Buddha’s teaching is what good buddhists will have to consider.
    A persson to become, and be ordained as a ‘Monk’, is what the higher ups will have to consider, so as to safeguard the good principles of Buddhism.
    The trend in which the whole situation is going is most appalling, to say the least.

  19. “Buddhism is and will remain one of the greatest philosophies known to man, one of great tolerance and humanity.”

    Sadhu!Sadhu!! Sadhu!!!
    No Talibani,Jihadi or unruly monk can change that.
    Coming from Dushy?
    you should have associated WJM more frequantly.

    We are livining in a imperfect world of fallible people. There is nothing we can do to change that,except live by the dhamma.
    Finding fault,complaining,seeking revenge in the guise of justice will not bring lasting peace,but compassion and forgiveness will.

    Justice delayed is justice denied. This applies to the victim as well as to the perpetrator. How much this man must have suffered all these years feeling guilty every time he remembers this,every time he has to face these children and thier parents over the years.

    What is unusual in this case is why he stopped his habit. Paedophiles are not know to just give up the habit.And also,even though the article itself is long,there is very little information regrding the subject case for one to form an opinion. There are many questions that need answers.

    The responsibilty for the safty and wellbeing of children primarily
    rests on the parents and There is no point in wailing,weeping and pointing fingers after the event.

    Finally regarding the threat to the writers life,you can rest assured though even Buddhists are known to kill snakes at times nobody kills rat snakes.

  20. Mallika says:

    “Fortunately the victim was a Sinhala Buddhist.”

    Was the victim fortunate to be abused by the Sinhala/Buddhist monk or for that matter any human being?

    You want to see everything in black and white do you? There are grey areas you may not recognize as you are not race blind.

    You say:

    “Further, this is not something new in Sri Lankan privenas but the law and the society protects them in Sri Lanka.”

    Sadly the state institutions are owned and run by Sinhala/Buddhist/Aryans.

  21. Dushy, what are you talking about this is orchistrated and funded by LTTE and the Tamil diaspora to discredit Srilanka and 2500years old Sinhala buddhist’s culture and their rulers in the west and by which to achieve EElam.We are trying to ship a white van from Srilanka to teach Srilankan brand of buddhism to the conspirators. Please warn your private gate keeper on the look out!!!

  22. Not defending the monk in any way, but would he be the same person he was 30-40 years ago, that he his now? I wonder. Does this negate the good that he has done? Is he worthy of forgiveness as angulimala was forgiven by the buddha? Should he be disrobed?

    I struggle with this aspect, and will leave it to better buddhists than myself to decide. Perhaps it is for his victims to decide.

    However it is correct that he is facing the consequences of his actions. Justice prevailed, albeit 30 years later and hopefully it will give some peace of mind to his victims and their families

    A leaf needs to be taken out of this book however. The dambulla monks who incited hatred, communal tensions and criminal damage should be prosecuted by the law. Will that happen in today’s Sri Lanka? I doubt it and they remain scot-free.

    What moral right would a government full of criminals have to prosecute the monk and his mob, when they are just as, if not more corrupt?

    As for that old chestnut about respecting the robes and not the person, I dont buy it.

    Too long have those that should not be monks in the first place sullied the good name of the decent monks, and lost the confidence of the lay people.

    Further to that, there should be a fundamental change in their attitudes and beliefs. Labels such as ‘Sinhala’, ‘Sri Lankan’, or caste (Nikaya) or party (JHU) should not be followed by the monks. They should be free of such attachments.

    Those that do, only prove they are not worthy of wearing the robe. As such they will not get my respect or time.

  23. Every religion has got its own bad clergy, so there were Christian priests too who even might be worst in this case. But, Dushey Ranatunga bashing buddhists looks bit dodgy as it has been his career for the recent past. Talking of Inamaluwe Sumangala over his thuggish behaviour affecting peaceful living of two communities is different from taking the trouble to bash Somaratne over sexual abuse which is an isolated incident.

  24. Could not agree more Chandimal.

    Hope, Dushy is not a Salman Rushdie in SL. Admire your courage in trying to do the right thing.
    As implied, it is not a reflection on buddhism but a few bad apples. We witness this behaviour right across men of different faiths. If your reporting can curb at the least one such incident from happening, it was great, even greater if it made my daugter safer.

    Very happy to see the justice, however it belated, has been done. Full of admiration for the lady: to be able to become a medical consultant in the UK despite this ordeal-having physically affected first in her childhood and had to live through with the agony of bottling this nightmare up for such a long time; to be frank and truthful to the person she married; her crusade not merely against an individual but a community at large, which kept a blind faith in its chief; and her determination to protect the next generation from this paedophiles.

    Would the devotees now distance themselves from this guy who exploits his position to confuse underages and then to guide them through the confusion or would they prepared to feed him through.

  25. The news is nothing new in terms Priest abusing children The reaction and action that was taken is the same whether it is the catholic church or for that matter the budhist public
    When the world came to know about the catholic priest and how the church defended and protected the priest they were sued by the victims and some whent bacrupt
    The abuse by the Budhist priest is just the begining as we go more cases will come to light just like the catholic abuse case only difference will ne number since the number of Budhist temples are very compared to the catholic churches in the west

    Nathen

  26. “…the monks robe is a “uniform” and that we respect the “uniform” and that there will always be many who abuse the “uniform”….Buddhism is and will remain one of the greatest philosophies known to man, one of great tolerance and humanity. Unfortunately very little of this is practiced in Sri Lanka….Except for a few enlightened minds, a vast majority perceived it as an assault on “Sinhala-Buddhism…..”
    This has nothing to do with purity of Buddhism or Sinhala-Buddhism. Unfortunately some abuse the people believe and respect on them for their personal advantages to ruin the community or organization they represent. Currently there is a heat wave going in TN about Nidiyanantha taking over Madurai ahtheenam. No one is immune to law, if someone at high level charged with crime; he/she must go through the same legal process to show they are not guilty or pled guilty & accept the punishment. This should not make a community to feel bad for one person’s behaviors; instead what community needs to do is help the victims so it doesn’t happen again. Since some of the crocks have money and political power/links, they eventually becomes king-makers and misled the community or even a country for their personal agenda.

  27. You speak about tom tom beating, loudspeaker blaring, noisy disco dancing by the Dansal gormandizing, noisy skeleton dancing during Vesak time.

    Have you ever been in the West during Christmas?

  28. Dushy may be right here. But, as a writer he has lost it all. he is after fame and wants to keep his name alive

    What’s wrong in seeking fame and wanting to keep one’s name alive?………….DBSJ

  29. “Lion says:
    May 6, 2012 at 2:19 am
    Thank you Chandimal……no one said it better…..great piece of thought….”

    i Fully agree.

  30. Dushey, As a Buddhist I condemned fully this monk and I have boycotted this temple long time ago. I only go to Amaravathi Temple these days as next temple I went was not that ideal either. Third temple I went was seems to be ok but just few months later Monk dis-robed having married an English women. At least he has the guts to leave. Any way your Aunty Serina and daughters have our family’s full support. This is a second hand information so I cannot verify myself but I feel I should write. Freind of mine’s friend who lives near Gampaha once gave dana to that orphanage. He observed that children were told not to talk to people who is bringing these alms. He said they seem greatly depressed. When he mentioned this then came the shock. He was told by a local “- some of these girls are “bad” they can be rented. We locals don’t give alms to them”. The shock to him was – locals blame the children. I think someone has to do something about it.

  31. “I wish the commentators like Kalu wouldn’t play racial politics with this”….. Anbu

    Are you serious?.

    Who is playing not only racial but religious politics too?

    About time Eezaahmists and the Diasporians detach themselves from these wicked, people with personal grudges, stirring the pot for personal gain.

    Please read the statement of the former Deputy and the last Leader of the LTTE,in the Jaffna paper published by a TNA MP himself.

    Sorry to hear about your family incident.

  32. Hi
    Hi every body !

    The problem identified here is not about the robe or race ,It is about suffering.Trauma to your body and mind and for soul.Whenever it happened to a tender innocent child ,it will last forever.The trauma ,pain,agony,and the guilt will not vanish from the person till he ventilating with someone.So it is not the monk,priest,can be anyone if abused a child they should face this fate. I am working with adults who were abused in their childhood .Even after 20,30,40 years i can see that when they start to talk about their eyes are tearing .So i would suggest not only in Sri Lanka but any where in hte world this has to be stopped ,offenders must be punished and victims should be protected.

  33. Native Vedda, if the victim was not a Sinhala Buddhist, the culprit monk would have played racial card properly and would have been acquitted from this heinous crime. In that sense, she and all of us , mainly the Tamils who live in UK are fortunate. I did not mean to say that the victim was fortunate. How can it be?

    If the victim had been a Tamil, just imagine what would have been your stand on this issue. So, fortunately, the victim was a Sinhala Buddhist! Isn’t it?

  34. Buddhism needs serious revision ( sanghayana) especially in the Sri Lankan context.
    If one is curious enough there are Sordid Porn VIDEOs available on the net Buddhist monks having sex in the temple( at least that is the impression one would get).
    We need a maha thero like Moggaliputta Thissa or Maha Kshyapa and a King like Maha Parakramabahu to re-instate the True Buddha Dhamm and the doctrine and completely de-couple it from the Politicians clout!!!
    Today the last resort of all politicians is to use( and ABUSE) Buddhist Ethos to propagate their political agendas.
    The Monks ( at least 98%) are there right for the Job.
    They appear in the Media to defend and white wash any crime committed by Maharaja or podi rajas( like the mad dog Mervin Silva).
    The elections held to positions in Temples are rigged by the politicians and the whole Buddisht culture and Temple system is a BIG stinking pile of filth.
    So, in this Wesak season my whole hearted wish is ‘4th Santayana and cleansing the conduct , doctrine and derobe the rogues and chase away the politicians and Businessmen in Robes ( e.g . Devram Vehera, Various Asapuwas, Monks who charge for sermons and ONLY use their sound systems to deliver the sermon and charge for it.Monks who do make up and wear 30,000.00 Rs worth imported robes NLY ( Uduwe Dhammaloka))
    So such is the stinking state of Buddhism in Sri Lanka today.!!!!

    ‘Subbe Snkara Anicha’
    ‘All things impermanent!”!!!’

    The Anonymous

  35. Buddhism needs serious revision ( sanghayana) especially in the Sri Lankan context.
    If one is curious enough there are Sordid Porn VIDEOs available on the net Buddhist monks having sex in the temple( at least that is the impression one would get).
    We need a maha thero like Moggaliputta Thissa or Maha Kshyapa and a King like Maha Parakramabahu to re-instate the True Buddha Dhamma and the doctrine and completely de-couple it from the Politicians clout!!!
    Today the last resort of all politicians is to use( and ABUSE) Buddhist Ethos to propagate their political agendas.
    The Monks ( at least 98%) are there right for the Job.
    They appear in the Media to defend and white wash any crime committed by Maharaja or podi rajas( like the mad dog Mervin Silva).
    The elections held to positions in Temples are rigged by the politicians and the whole Buddhist culture and Temple system is a BIG stinking pile of filth.
    So, in this Wesak season my whole hearted wish is ‘4th Santayana and cleansing the conduct , doctrine and derobe the rogues and chase away the politicians and Businessmen in Robes ( e.g . Devram Vehera, Various Asapuwas, Monks who charge for sermons and ONLY use their sound systems to deliver the sermon and charge for it.Monks who do make up and wear 30,000.00 Rs worth imported robes ONLY ( Uduwe Dhammaloka))
    So such is the stinking state of Buddhism in Sri Lanka today.!!!!

    ‘Subbe Snkara Anicha’
    ‘All things impermanent!”!!!’

    The Anonymous

  36. Sex is a natural requisite of any living being from crawling creatures to human beings. Any religion or philosophy which prevents the fulfilling the need of this natural requisite is acting against nature. Man cannot completely suppress himself from fulfilling this natural need. So he is compelled to resort to unacceptable methods and, thereby, consequences of all sorts of sexual abuse.

  37. Sri Lankan Buddhist will never forget late Dr. E. W. Adikaram, a pious Buddhist and a true patriot who championed the cause Buddhism and Buddhist education in Sri Lanka. He was quoted to have said frequently “If only we could convert some of our monks to Buddhism…” In every religion you find wolves in sheep’s clothing and where the religion is wedded to political power reforming it is more difficult.

  38. Ranjan, Toronto,

    “..You speak about tom tom beating, loudspeaker blaring, noisy disco dancing by the Dansal gormandizing, noisy skeleton dancing during Vesak time..

    Have you ever been in the West during Christmas?…”

    The West, the Christmas, the Noise and the constant chatter have always remained unrelated and asymmetric to the profound soul searching and exploration into the human psyche and the spiritual phenomena in Asia. Unlike in the space-crippled noisy polluted industrialized and spoiled world of today-which you can observe yourself-the seriously religious ancient people built their places of religious exploration in calm quiet serene picturesque and overlooking settings. This area used to embrace vast vacant spaces shady trees which are often very large and ancient and often mountains of varying proportions which in unison add to the overall solemnity profoundness and vastness of feeling which when confronted all your problems of everyday existence are for a moment gone and you being stripped naked of your incessant mind’s chatter meet with this marvel of nature being miniaturized dwarfed and made humble reminding you of your true psychological dimensions in front of nature’s beauty and majesty. You need to be sensitive to perceive the world in its true nature beauty and pristine glory. Go to such a place of nature-a vast spacious scenic paddy field, beautiful sun rising or setting, a walk in the nature’s park keeping all your problems of the “West during Christmas” in the locker of your small house and you will understand why it is important have silence, the freedom from noise pollution, the man made “spiritual noise of religion” and whether your soul actually seeks that noise or the silence that heals our wounds of existence! And don’t complain the sound of waves breaking on the shore or mountain wall is “noise” or like “West during Christmas”!

  39. THIS IS AN OFFENCE

    Dear friend Dushey,

    Because of vesak poya, I engauged with religious activities that I am usually doing in poya days, there was no room for doing other works. To day mornning I saw your detailled letter.I was so excited. So in order to find out more details, I went my home works what I am usually doing. Thisis my findings.

    Apart from the main theam there are other few things that defenitely I am not agree upon with you.

    1. The robe treat as a uniform
    2. Unanimously link with inland children protecting centre.

    These things could be discuss with seperate coment.But the main context is rape and sexual harrestment.

    He is Pahalegama Somaratana “Venerable” Chief Sanghanayaka Thera of Great Britain and chief incumbent of the Thames Buddhist Vihara and also Parivenadhipathi of the Vidyaravinda Pirivena, Pahalagama, Gampaha and Chief Lekakhadhikari of the Sri Kalyani Samagri Dharma Maha Sangha Sabhawa.

    So called aligation must not be limit with couts proceding as you mensioned. Sri Kalyani Samagri Dharma Maha Sangha Sabhawa must investigate the case because it is serious offence which leads a monk becoms a lay man.

    I am a SINHALA BUDDHIST and proud of it. Iam not a master of dharma but I am practicing it for my day to day activities. From past three years I am reading the THRIPITAKAYA.(LOARD BUDDHA’S TEACHING,WHICH DOCUMENTED IN DAMBULLA VIHARAYA)

    According to the VINAYA PITAKAYA there are 4 offence which are taken as principal offences

    Capital offences Parajika

    There are four parajikas or rules of defeat. Any monk or nun who breaks any one of the rules is automatically “defeated”. He/she falls from monkhood/nunhood even if he or she wears the yellow robe. Also he/she is not allowed to enter the Sangha in this life-time. The first parajika forbids sexual intercourse. Therefore in Buddhism, a monk could never have a wife. The second rule forbids stealing any object of value over Rs. 1500. The third rule forbids killing a human being. The fourth forbids making false claims to supernatural psychotic attainments i.e. jhana or even Arahantship. Wilful intention is necessary for these acts to constitute an offence

    I think Pahalegama Somaratana thero and as well as Sri Kalyani Samagi Dharma Maha Sangha Sabhawa must be thoroughly known the vinaya pitakaya.

    THEREFORE SRI KALYANI SAMAGRI DHARMA MAHA SANGHA SABAWA IMMEDIATELY SHOULD INVESTIGATE THE ALLIGATION.

    samarasekara

  40. Well said Chandimal!

    We need brave sinhala buddhists like you to come out and fight for peace, justice and equality in that beautiful island.

  41. Dushy,
    How can He be Ur Relative as he was educated at Yahalabedda Maha Vidyalaya in Badulla (later Bandarawela Central)???
    Also He did NOT know the art of using cutlery ???

  42. Dear Chandimal,

    First of all Sinhalese Buddhists are in a wilderness to falsely assume they are the protectors of Buddhism! Many of them believe a certain god entrusted Sinhalese the duty to safeguard Buddhism for 5000 or so years!

    I agree that Buddhism in Sri Lanka is in a wretched state for monks to engage in these activities with impunity. Even worse there are few if any lay followers who are willing to speak out and condemn these actions which reflect badly on Buddhists. Although I am not a fan of Dushmantha Ranetunge, he is correct that there is a culture of unaccountability in the Sinhala community that is most evident in Sri Lanka but is even seen in far away countries like England.

    Sinhala Buddhists have to understand that if they don’t clean their own house, eventually the stink will be so unbearable that outsiders will step in to do it themselves, and at that point the Buddhists will lose their freedom.

    Having said that, your above sentence reflects a certain ignorance of the history of Buddhism that leads me to believe that you are not a Buddhist yourself. It is a fact that Sri Lanka has the oldest continuing tradition in the world, which means that the Sinhalese for better or worse have been the protectors of Buddhism (for the past 2300 years, not 5000). It was not a god-entrusted task but a self-entrusted task, especially after Buddhism disappeared from India the land of its birth. If not for the Sinhala Buddhists, the oldest Buddhist teachings would have disappeared from the earth and would not have spread to Thailand, Cambodia, Burma etc.

  43. Wije,

    Buddhism disappeared from Sri Lanka several times and it was in the last instance a South Indian born Tamil king of Kandy of who brought it back from the far east.

    So if the Sinhalese were protecting it, they didn’t do a good job of it.

  44. Wije,

    It was not the Sinhalese who preserved the oldest buddhist teachings. It was a Tamil monk, Buddhaghosa who wrote the tripitaka.

    What crap is this “Sinhala buddhists” ? no such tribe existed during these times. The Sinhala buddhist tribe came into existence after the formation of the Royal Academy in 1835.

  45. @ Ranjan,Toronto

    The west does not go about preaching of Christmas and all that,true its a commercialised event with no religious meaning,but there is no public disturbance using loudspeakers nor are fellows going with lists to each and every house and demand ‘donations for dansala'(like how local hoodlums do so in lanka) and most importantly the West does not act hypocritical during Christmas and try to preach or force others to do what they want to
    btw,i have seen many Christmases in the West so i know what im talking about mate!

  46. Mallika

    There is something call natural justice which takes care of all such criminality. It takes time but it works,

    Whether the victim was Tamil, Sinhalese or other race is immaterial. An abuse is an abuse is an abuse, irrespective of who the perpetrator was.

  47. Chandimal:
    Not to take lightly what you have written as I do agree with you, but just as you can ignore commercial “noise” of a Christmas in the West, so can you ignore the “noise” of Vesak of Sri Lanka if you wished to do so and concentrate on the real message and practice of Siddartha Gothama the Buddha. If there is a will there is a way my friend.

    By the way, the same “noise” is present when a Church feast is held in Wattala or Negombo, or when Muslims call their faithful to prayers five times a day, or when the Veil cart travels down Galle Road to the Kovil in Wellewatta.

    About the “noise” of “Buddhists” is Sri Lanka, I do have a story to tell. We lived down Templars Road in Mount Lavinia when I was growing up. One Vesak many years a go, one of the commercial enterprises in our area decided to have several days of pirith at their establishment and to show the world how pious they were, decided to broadcast this to the whole neighbourhood day and night. It was noisy and pretty annoying to most of the people in the area who by the way was a mixture of Buddhists, Christians and Hindus. So my father who is not the kind of person to put up with this goes to the Temple (The Pirivena at Ratmalana) complains to the head priest there who was a personal friend of his. ‘Hamuduruwane, megolla ke gahanawa hariyata harak wage, apita nidagantath ne” (Venerable sir, these people are shouting like cattle day and night, we can not even sleep in peace). The head priest’s reply was “Ane mahaththayo, aegolla mage harak nemei” (But sir, they are not my cattle!). The monks who were chanting were not from his temple! That same head priest was at the funeral ceremony of my father and related this story to us there bringing a bit of humour to a rather sad occasion.

  48. Dear Lanka Muslim,

    /*
    Sex is a natural requisite of any living being from crawling creatures to human beings.
    */

    The idea of Buddhism is to beat nature. It may sound counter-intuitive. However by nature you are born, given sicknesses and ultimately die suffering in pain. Buddhism gives you the tools to manage the process efficiently once you are born. The tools makes one autonomous. i.e. no external dependence. It also shows you a way to avoid repeating the horrible process ever again.

  49. Dushy Ranetunge says:
    May 7, 2012 at 6:24 pm

    It was not the Sinhalese who preserved the oldest buddhist teachings. It was a Tamil monk, Buddhaghosa who wrote the tripitaka.
    ———-
    Dear friend Dushy,

    I am affraid you are incorrect.

    Buddhist’s Dharma firmely established in THRIPITAKAYA. It is in PALI AND STILL UNCHANGED. Untill the year 1 ad it was protected as oral mode with remarcable sacrifaction by the monks.

    How it was documented? The mere reason was BAMINITIYA SAYA.(the great drout)

    Wth the Patroniced of king WALAGAMBAHU it was being documentation in year 1 ad in Dambulla Viharaya. As the result of king’s favour Dambulls rajamaha viharaya got 12,000 akers.

    What did BUDDHAGOSHA THERO.

    If you go through THRIPITAKAYA you may agree upon with me without having EXTRA CLARRIFICATIONS it is very defficult task to understand the context.

    In order to overcome the problem what ancient sinhala buddhist did?

    There were not trying to change the single letter in Thripitakaya but furnished many interpritation in sinshla language. They exist as ATUWA. ven,BUDDhagosha thero translated them into PALI language.Now they ate exist as PALI ATUWA.The bad thing what the ven, thoro did was,destroied all sinhala atuwa. Therefore no SINHALA ATUWA KATHA are remaining.

    Now days I too wish to using ATUWA to get better understing THRIPITAKAYA. As an inetial step i am studying PALI language.

    samarasekara

  50. wije,
    It was not just in Lanka that the Buddhism and its teachings were preserved. Most of the Buddhist texts were also preserved in China and in temples along the famed Silk Road, after the faith and its teachings were eradicated from India by the Hindus and Muslims. So complete was the disappearance of Buddhism from India, most Indians did not know who the Emperor Asoka was and what the significance of his pillars were until Brits and Germans in 19 century translated Mahavawsa from Pali and cross referenced the sketchy information on Asoka that they had found in Northern India, Burma and Siam.

  51. Finally this topic turns into true Buddhist scholarly discussion.
    The reader Samaraseksara seems to be interested in Buddhist History in Sri Lanka.
    May I suggest
    ‘Buddhist History in Ceylon ‘ by Ven. Valpola Rahula Thero.
    I purchased it during New Year Holidays for 1200 Rs. in Colombo and I can assure you its truly well researched, Objective dissertation done by and erudit Monk( I would like to call him a modern Buddhaghosha to the extent of his comparative studies and intuitive conclusions suggested.
    I would take it more serious ly than some suggestions( at times , conclusively) passed on Buddha, Dhamma and the Sri Lankan history bu Geiger, Parker, Or Turner like westerners who could never understand the true Buddhist culture.

    Ajith Boralugoda

  52. I believe the problem is one of men of the cloth and their libidos. The male ego, whether clothed in a yellow robe or any other kind of uniform, is a symbol of power and superiority.
    There is very little humility and compassion that I notice in SL Buddhism. It was SLB’s who waged a war on an ethnic minority…where’s the loving kindness in that?
    Their other minority all left for more mentally developed shores.
    It’s all in the mind, not the uniform, and these minds are sick and polluted.

  53. I’ve visited SL many times as a tourist and though the country is beautiful, the politics are not! Women and children are hugely marginalised. Whist staying with a Sinhala family, I noticed some strange practices, one of them being the wife of the family attending the temple and finding a confidant (to talk over her marital and family problems) in a monk.
    It’s not surprising that a monk has overstepped the mark in London; they’re all not cut out for the job. CRB’s will not help with detection. Better that they choose the priesthood for an objective other than to make money.

  54. I trust nobody is still worshipping the robe by scraping and bowing to monks.
    The reason they sit in the front seat in SL buses is that so the driver can keep an eye on them….now we know why!!

  55. Ajith Boralugoda says:

    ” would take it more serious ly than some suggestions( at times , conclusively) passed on Buddha, Dhamma and the Sri Lankan history bu Geiger, Parker, Or Turner like westerners who could never understand the true Buddhist culture”

    Well have the Sinhala/Buddhist/Aryans mastered Buddhism?

  56. Dushmantha

    Buddhism disappeared from Sri Lanka several times and it was in the last instance a South Indian born Tamil king of Kandy of who brought it back from the far east.

    Buddhism never “disappeared” as you claim; if that was true then the historical memory of the Buddhists would extend only as far back as the last time it was reintroduced.

    After the fall of Rajarata in the early 13th century, Buddhism began to decline over a period of centuries that was demonstrated by the disappearance of the Sangha and its institutions. Wimala Dharma Suriya and Kirti Sri Rajasinghe (the Nayakkar king) revitalised the Sangha by bringing monks from Burma and Thailand to conduct higher ordinations. What you may have missed is that the Theravada tradition in those two countries was established earlier by none other than Sri Lankan monks.

    There are two key points to draw from this bit of history: 1) the survival of Buddhism has directly depended on the survival of its institutions (i.e. the Sangha) and 2) the collapse of the civilisations that patronised these institutions led to their collapse as well. There is no precedent of Buddhism surviving without some form of state sponsorship.

    It was a Tamil monk, Buddhaghosa who wrote the tripitaka.

    Samarasekera is correct (and you are wrong), the Tipitaka was committed to writing in the 1st century BCE long before Buddhaghosa who was a compiler and editor of commentaries and other works.

    You really have to work on your understanding of Sri Lankan history. This is not the first time I’ve had to correct it.

  57. Ranjan

    Most of the Buddhist texts were also preserved in China and in temples along the famed Silk Road, after the faith and its teachings were eradicated from India by the Hindus and Muslims.

    The Chinese preserved only Mahayana texts, which came later.

  58. I suggest we create a spring in Sri Lanka like they did in the Middle East and get rid of this religion called Buddhism. We will give everyone a chance to either join us or go against us, and for those who choose to go against us we will wipe them out just like Hitler did !

    Lets step forward and make Sri Lanka Buddhist Free ! We will be a better country without it ! Even though most of the country may be Buddhist, I guarantee you each and every one of them will not challenge us out of fear as we root out the evil of this country. No one will be able to stop us, not the west, not the UN, not China and not India. We will be too powerful. They will all need us if they want to strategically be placed in the Indian Ocean and have access to our harbours.

    Once we get rid of this disease of a religion we can then restore the economy to where it should be, and grow at a rate faster than China.

    Let us step forward and make this happen ! Sri Lanka Jaya Wewa ! From Tomorrow all those that choose to remain within the Buddhist boundaries be aware as we are coming.

  59. What a brave war cry from Buddhist Mr Springer….I agree completely….remove the tumour and resotre good humour. SL would be better with agnosticism.

  60. By the time I got to the bottom of the comments I had to look back to see what the article was about.

    It certainly was not about politics & Sri Lanka

  61. Hey Wije,

    we have

    Amarapura nikaya …from Burma
    Siam Nkiaya from Thailand
    ramanna Nikaya also from Burma.

    So where is the “Sinhala” Nikaya from 2500 years ago?

  62. I want Dushy to Take Up Tamara’s Post in Geneva !!! Will I be Lucky to See My Dream Come True ???

    DBSJ RESPONDS:
    Yes but only if Kalu Albert takes up Kshenuka’s post in Colombo

  63. Dushmantha, it was a pity that you couldn’t address any of my points. I get the impression that you’re not a very well-read person. You get all of your information from talking with people. I’m sure a friend told you that Buddhaghosa had written the Tipitaka, and you did not bother to check it up because you do not read.

    So where is the “Sinhala” Nikaya from 2500 years ago?

    Given that the Burmese and Thai traditions came directly from Sri Lanka, the institutions that they brought back to Sri Lanka could be described as “Sinhala” (although I wouldn’t use that term myself). The oldest version of the Mahavamsa is carved in stone in Burma. The Cambodian version of the Mahavamsa is twice the length of the “Sinhala,” (I think because it incorporates some of the commentaries). Go to Sukothai in Thailand and you will see that the oldest Buddhist dagabas were modelled after those in Polonnaruwa.

  64. Emma

    I’ve visited SL many times as a tourist and though the country is beautiful, the politics are not!

    Please name one country where the politics are “beautiful.”

  65. Hey Wije,

    So If the Siam/Amarapura/ramanna is from a Sinhala nikaya, since it came from Sri Lanka, then the Sinhala nikaya must be from the Indian Nikaya, because buddhism came from India?

    How enlightened. I am learning everyday from the guru.

    So Sinhala buddhism is actually Indian Buddhism? going from the same logic?

    So why are all these chokkas making a song and a dance about sinhala buddhism? All confused eh?

  66. Hey Kahapola,

    Your dream has come true.

    The man going to Geneva is my guru, who recruited me to this in the first place in the 1980;s. It is he who worked with Kadirgamer and sent me to Jaffna and to LTTE conferences in Canada, London etc. in the 1980’s.

    You must be careful about what you wish.

  67. Dushy,
    Thanks indeed for replying to My 2nd Question !!!

    How about answering My 1st Question ???

    “Dushy,
    How can He (WJM Loku Banda) be Ur Relative as he was educated at Yahalabedda Maha Vidyalaya in Badulla (later Bandarawela Central)???
    Also He did NOT know the art of using cutlery ???”

  68. Yu have to ask my mother for relationships Kahapola, as I only lived 17 years of my life in Sri Lanka and have lived over 30 years in the UK. I do not know most of my relations. I think he is related via marriage. I went along for the lunch in Parliament and at his home with my mother and later he came to my house near Police Park in Colombo for dinner. I know his son the MP as well, but I tend to avoid the whole lot, but am just polite to them.

  69. “I want Dushey to take up Tamara’s Post in Geneva”……Kapila Kahapola,

    Seriously, Mr Dushey Ranatunga would have been

  70. Dushy.

    /*
    So If the Siam/Amarapura/ramanna is from a Sinhala nikaya, since it came from Sri Lanka, then the Sinhala nikaya must be from the Indian Nikaya, because buddhism came from India?
    */

    Theravada is widely believed to be closest to the teachings that originated in India. Theravada is descended from the Tamraparniya, which means “the Ceylonese lineage”. Ceylon have underpinned its growth and survival whatever speculative thinking is out there on the origins. The tradition became weak after incredibly devastating and cruel South Indian invasion by Kalinga Magha around 12th century. However the tradition was preserved in Thailand and Burma just as Buddha’s sacred tooth was hidden at times of great calamity. Theravada is now 100 million strong. I can comfortably attribute Ceylon as the most significant reason for its survival.

  71. Somaratna might have been abused by his ‘Loku Hamuduruvo’ when he was an ‘Abiththiya’. Child abuse takes place in Buddhist temples in Sri Lanka. The practice of child ordination in SL should be abolished.

  72. Dushmantha, I am glad that you are grateful for the instruction, but you still have far to go.

    So Sinhala buddhism is actually Indian Buddhism? going from the same logic?

    Buddhism used to belong to India, until India forgot Buddhism. Buddhism was never forgotten in Sri Lanka, why else did the kings (one of them being a non-Buddhist) bring monks from SE Asia to revitalise the Sangha?

    What is a “chokka?” Are you a chokka?

  73. “Yes, but only if Kalu Albert takes Kshenuka’s place in Colombo”……..DBSJ.

    Not Necessarily.

    Srilankan consulates need Western educated, articulate people, who look good on big screen LED?LDCs to present our views and image in White lounge rooms.

    With his burning aspiration to be an Ambassadror for his motherland, Mr Ranatunga fits the bill well.

    Perhaps he may even relocate his tent and becorme the cheer leader for Chokkas.

    DBSJ RESPONDS:

    Still he needs a reliable partner or sidekick. Like Tonto to Lone Ranger. So dont say NO.

    “Kalu nethuva Baa, Baa,Kalu nethuva Baa,Baa

  74. Chokka are persons of high intellect, who form the main bulk of the population, who votes intellectuals such as Dr Mervin Silva and Dr Mahinda Rajapakse to power. Mahinda received an honorary doctorate from Russia in recognition of his intellectual prowess.

    I hope I have clarified for your satisfaction.

  75. DilshanF

    You say :As you know many Christian priests have also been convicted on child abuse. Thank you for this information.

    True. But I have not heard anything like a christian priest lifting his robes to expose the genitals. Have you !

  76. Dushy U Mama’s Boy, Do U Write All these Articles Based on What Ur Mom Says ??? Don’t U at Least do Some Home Work Before Publishing ???

  77. Both Kahapola and Wije are right, unfortunately I am not a chokka, but one must always aspire for higher standards.

    It was Buddha who said, hang around with fools and you too will be a fool and hang around with wise men and you too will be wise.

    I am privileged to be in the company of wije and Kahapola who exude such hight’s of wit, satire and candor, that make me humbled before them.

    Unfortunately, I do not possess the intellectual depth required for such greatness.

    One can be educated, but intelligence is something that some say is inherent.

  78. Wije says ——Buddhism was never forgotten in Sri Lanka

    Ah, yes, under that famous bo tree Buddha preached that the sinhalese should worship his tooth, walk around bo trees and do bodhi pooja, have a caste system, monks to get involve in politics and to lead demonstrations to demolish mosques etc……..

    I agree, in Sri Lanka. buddhism was never forgotten. It is that great intellect of the high IQ Sinhala race, that is responsible for such greatness.

  79. ….C-H-O-K-K-A-S…

    Caring, Honest,Open.Kind ,& Keen Array of Srilnakans, who are against, Racism, Religion Bashing, Communal Politics, and only want to live in peace ,harmony and prsoperity with fellow inhabitants,after three decades of deprivation.

    Obviously, this Briton / Srilanka dual citizen Mr Ranatunga is not one of them according to his own take.

  80. I will go along with Kalu’s definition, but unfortunately his is what it should be, and not what it is today.

    Its like Buddhism in Sri Lanka, what it should be and what it is, are two very different things.

  81. Kapila Kahapola says:
    May 12, 2012 at 12:26 am
    Dushy U Mama’s Boy, Do U Write All these Articles Based on What Ur Mom Says ??? Don’t U at Least do Some Home Work Before Publishing ???

  82. Buddhist Jerry Springer, You are too late and belated. MR regime has already gone half way through it. You all will be able to taste the fruits of it soon like UN carving out a separate state for Tamils, Chaina and India grabbing two pieces from the unfortunate country. Go on stupid chat go on, we know all the good things are now a barrier and head-ache for your hell-bound nose-dive!

  83. Dear Wije, Rajan Toronto,

    Outward appearances, the cloak, the robe, the books and ancient scripts and the tradition and rituals, various pujas, beliefs and pirith chanting, the Vesak noise, the pandols, the dansals, the very monk and the temple, the Bo tree, the Dagaba and the Buddha’s statue etc. are not Buddhism nor the very words of the Buddha written on ancient sacred parchments or in the stone inscriptions. Sinhalese nation or any nation for that matter or the numerous monks in many chapters with their contradicting rituals and practices can protect what the Buddha has discovered and preached. In the core of Buddhism is nothingness which means not a thing put together by the human mind that can be perceived by sensory organs! So how do you come upon something so subtle, intangible, ultra-sensory and unknown with all the paraphernalia described above? You don’t call the outward manifestations the real thing nor the word the real thing. The word “Buddha” is not real Buddha!

    Were you to be asked, “who are YOU?” what answer would you give? Is it your name, your skeleton, your limbs, your internal organs, the skin or the whole body? And when you are dead then who are you? If the ALIVE YOU is the “you” then what is “life”? And what about the soul, the self, the ego, the mind or this entity that says, “This is me, I am”? If someone comes along and gives you a marvelous explanation covering all the updated information medically, physically, biologically and religiously and spiritually then do you get satisfied with it and say, “alright, that is fine, I got it”? Or would you say, “This I don’t really know, but never mind, I leave it up to God, that all powerful entity that is above me in the heaven and always watching and protecting me”? Or would you say as many Buddhists seem to imply, “we are the followers of the greatest religion in the world, sacredness of our monks is only tertiary to Buddha and his doctrine, the monks know the Buddha’s doctrine a-z and we can rely on them to guide us to our ultimate religious destiny”? Or would you say, “this seems to be more serious business than initially thought, no one seems to be able to accompany me to the top of the hill, to the real understanding of true meaning of religion and the enlightenment, no monk in the world is able to give me the innermost understanding into myself, I will have to do it myself,”. This “do it myself” is the real crux of the matter and the beginning of the real religious man, not the duplicate Buddhist. But then how would you do that? Back to the same business I started this comment with!!!? This is the cycle people are caught in, somewhere in the rituals! What are we to do then? Every right thinking person would come upon this question.

    This business of religion is the most profound exploration. All this time this “me” explored the outside world. It delved deep into the earth, miles into the ocean and looked furthest into the space and stars. Yet only a handful explored the world within himself. Majority of Sinhalese are real stupid otherwise they would not get deceived by this rogue Rajapaksha regime. Rajapakshas are robbing the nation by the billions but everyone is happy to go about his sorry existence eking out a shoddy existence with no questions asked, only praise for the king, blame for Ranil, faith on and veneration for the monk and building a shrine and installing a Buddhist statue in in every vacant space by the road side. This is Rajapaksha sanctioned subtle Thalaibanization of Buddhism. People do not know they are caught up in a massive aggressive fundamentalist tribal-nation and tribal-ego building superstition! This stupid nation can go on building all kinds of religious icons all over the place on the ground or into the sky but none of these pursuits would draw them an inch towards truth.

    The realization of the profound and beyond-human-limitations states requires that you be healthy, balanced, sensitive, humane, caring, energetic and humble. You must not contribute to the vast insane activities that cause destruction to the earth, its environment, its ecology and biology. The face and soul of this marvelous earth is being fast destroyed. Destruction is the twin brother of development-oil spills on seas, breached oil wells, Japan nuclear disaster and radiation pollution, mountains of waste matter and left overs of the development and consumerism, depletion of forest cover, pollution of water-think of these things. And finally you don’t attain nirvana or realize the ultimate truth while living on a garbage dump yard but while living among all the marvelous beauty majesty and love of the nature! You must have limitless freedom to discover what Buddha revealed. Do we have freedom on this Rajapaksha worshipped and ideologized country where white vans mete out the final verdict of justice!? This is where religion goes political in layman’s terms. You have to restore democracy and get rid of this despotic destructive and illegal government. Without doing that all your religious pursuits, hopes of peaceful existence, sensible future aspirations are just imaginations and reactions against the political reality on the ground!

  84. Not at All Dushy, I am Very Much Surrounded by My Loved Ones !!! In Fact We All had a Fantastic Holiday in SL for Avurudu & Returned to UAE on 2 Weeks Ago !!! (How Ever, I’m Sure U Know that I DO NOT Stay at Cheap Joints Like U Do & Spoil My Holidays)

    BTW, U did NOT Answer My Questions…Dont U Do Home Work Before Publishing these ??? It is Alarming Trend Past Recently I Noticed Many Readers Keep Asking U to Verify Facts Before being Penned in Public Forums !!! Also Many Out there Keep Challenging What U Write as Nothing but Absolute Garbage !!!

  85. Its just that the quality you exude is to such a high standard, I am just lost for words.

    You are truly a prime example of the success of our free education system.

    All Sri Lankans should be proud of your quality and intellectuality displayed here.

    WOW! I am truly humbled.

    About this garbage I write, don’t you think its a bad reflection on TamilWeek/transcurrents and the island Newspaper that carries such garbage?

    You should campaign to have the editors sacked, for carrying such garbage in their websites and newspapers and instead please advise them to carry intellectual stuff as suggested by you.

    Most of Sri Lanka is privileged to share your wisdom on these matters. I am truly humbled.

  86. Dushy

    Machang , looks like you have stirred up a hornets nest ! Some of the comments that have been posted truly beggars belief and perhaps is a good reason why mother Lanka will never progress for a long as democracy exists. We have a majority populace who are simply incapable of seeing beyond the narrow confines of the Sinhala Buddhist concept of what the world should be. Siddharta Gautama will be mortified to see what is being perpetrated in the name of his teachings in mother Lanka.

    On the subject of the article, it is hard to comprehend that Somaratna whom I have known since 1982 when the Thames Vihara came into being was capable of such deeds. Goes to show how we blindly pay respect to the robe without ever knowing who actually is wearing it . Food for thought !

    The conspiracy theorists who are alleging all sorts of anti SL , anti Sinhala, anti Buddhist plots should take note that it was the CPS who brought the prosecution and the verdict was arrived at unanimously by the jury.
    It is also interesting that the crime for which he was found guilty is one that leaves little room for manoeuvre in the event of an appeal which is bound to happen. A guilty verdict on the more serious charge of rape would have given latitude for the defence to appeal on technical grounds and perhaps win the appeal. Also interesting to note that evidence obtained through hypnotherapy was not accepted.

    Seevali

  87. Dushy

    Machang, looks like you have stirred up a hornets nest ! Some of the comments that have been posted truly beggars belief and perhaps is a good reason why mother Lanka will never progress for as long as democracy exists. We have a majority populace who are simply incapable of seeing beyond the narrow confines of the Sinhala Buddhist concept of the what the world should be. Siddharta Gauthama will be mortified to see what is being perpetrated in the name of his teachings in mother Lanka.

    On the subject of the article, it is hard to comprehend that Somaratna, whom I have know since 1982 when the Thames Vihara came into being was capable of such deeds. Goes to show how we blindly pay respect to the robe without knowing who actually is wearing it. Food for thought ?

    The conspiracy theorists who are alleging all sorts of anti SL, anti Sinhala, anti Buddhist plots should take note that it was the CPS that brought the prosecution and the verdict was arrived at unanimously by the jury. It is also interesting that the crime for which he was found guilty is one that leaves little room to manoeuvre in the event of an appeal which is bound to happen. A guilty verict on the more serious charge of rape would I suspect given some latitude for the defence to appeal on technical grounds and perhaps even win the appeal. Also interesting to note that evidence obtained through hypnotherapy was not accepted

  88. Dushmantha

    Chokka are persons of high intellect, who form the main bulk of the population, who votes intellectuals such as Dr Mervin Silva and Dr Mahinda Rajapakse to power.

    Thank you for the illuminating clarification. Now my next question: is there a similar term for persons who leave the country of their birth, loudly insist that they are a citizen or perhaps subject of a new country to which they emigrated and then for some reason have extremely strong opinions about that country they have rejected? And to boot, a rather lousy knowledge of their birth-country’s history?

    I am privileged to be in the company of wije and Kahapola who exude such hight’s of wit, satire and candor, that make me humbled before them.
    Unfortunately, I do not possess the intellectual depth required for such greatness.
    One can be educated, but intelligence is something that some say is inherent.

    Thank you for your very kind words Dushmantha. For my part, I am aggrieved that you lack the “intellectual depth” to continue the conversation on Buddhism and Sri Lankan history that you can only compliment my wit and candor. I would offer you some hope in my belief that intelligence is not “inherent” and it is possible to uplift oneself through education. It is all a matter of willpower and determination.

    I agree, in Sri Lanka. buddhism was never forgotten. It is that great intellect of the high IQ Sinhala race, that is responsible for such greatness.

    Correction: It was not Sinhala intellect that allowed Buddhism to survive in Sri Lanka but rather a determination to preserve the teachings that was lacking in India. It takes intellect to practice a belief system such as Buddhism, but not to preserve it.

  89. Dear Chandimal

    Sinhalese nation or any nation for that matter or the numerous monks in many chapters with their contradicting rituals and practices can protect what the Buddha has discovered and preached.

    That is fine, but you would not be talking about what the Buddha had discovered and preached if the Sinhalese had not kept the memory of the Buddha alive.

  90. Dear Wije,

    (No) “Sinhalese nation or any nation for that matter or the numerous monks in many chapters with their contradicting rituals and practices can protect what the Buddha has discovered and preached.”

    Do forgive me every one. I have missed out the word “No” at the beginning of the above sentence in my comment.

    There is truth in what you say that had the memory of Buddha and his doctrine not been kept alive through outward gestures and expressions Buddhism would have distanced away from the memory of the people. But the question that keeps emerging is why this all-out importance emphasis on and projection of the “brim” of Buddhism without the necessity of realization of the true living religion in the living human being? However glorified, sanctified, practiced, worshiped and however ancient a tradition may be it is still not the real thing. And almost everyone in the country is quite content with the “placebo pill”. Just consider the danger, vanity and emptiness of the very idea that a whole nation is engulfed in the misconception of a fake Buddhism!

  91. Dear Chandimal

    However glorified, sanctified, practiced, worshiped and however ancient a tradition may be it is still not the real thing. And almost everyone in the country is quite content with the “placebo pill”. Just consider the danger, vanity and emptiness of the very idea that a whole nation is engulfed in the misconception of a fake Buddhism!

    What is the alternative?

  92. Dear Wije,

    Peel off the onion!!!!

    Religion has remained one of the most ancient quests of mankind in search of something beyond himself-something that will give him a sense of freedom, something that will enable him to transcend the mortal being and existence, salvation from the earthly sorrow, something everlasting and sacred. Various religions have defined their final destination or ultimate goal. Now, I want to discover what Buddha has actually meant by Nirvana, compassion, love, intelligence, freedom from anger, jealousy and greed. I know that my mind has not touched or come upon what is really meant by these words. But I do know the feelings involved with hate, anger etc. By negating, abandoning and jettisoning anger for example you may come upon a state where there is no anger! So dump what thou hath hoarded in thy consciousness as anger to find out love!

    You know when you negate the fallacy you come to the truth-when you question and reject the false Buddhism you will discover the actual religion. But this puts great demands on you and you will have to swim against the current, the current of vast streams of superstition of humans. The harbinger of Buddhism Lord Buddha, what did he do? He began abandoning everything including his wife and only child! He abandoned even eating in search of truth. So this letting go, constant look out for the truth, great determination, courage, intense great silent and solitary observation and exploration into one’s own heart and mind are the conveyances towards truth where meditation would play a vital role.

    Don’t listen or believe these rogue monks! They will tell you to hand over to them everything you possess including your wife if you are gullible enough! I have heard a true story of a monk in a leading temple. This rogue is no more but the adverse impact he created remains a living ugly monument of the kind of Buddhism practiced today.

    There was a family of husband wife and several daughters. Husband was a labourer and a neighbour had started a secret affair with the beautiful wife while the husband was away doing his job. Ultimately this affair came to the fore and with the passage of time the husband became deranged. In his madness he then found solace in a famous temple in the area. While the husband was in his madness and the whole family scattered and going through hell do you know what this sinful monk did? He deceived the deranged man and got him to transfer the ownership of the land belonging to him to the monk! The wife and the children had to file a lawsuit to claim their portion of the marriage! And do you know what happened afterwards? The monk built a small hut-temple in the middle of the residential area and began preaching Buddism using blaring loudspeakers! The monk engages in all type of “Buddhist Rackets” known to people who turn a blind eye towards them. The people who are close to the temple feel appalled and anxious with the arrival of each Poya Day because the monk is stuffing “Pure Therawada Buddhism” through the throat and down the guts of residents using blaring loudspeakers some even think of selling the lands and go to another place due to unbearable “Buddhist noise pollution”! And yet again do you know the most interesting behaviour of some of the “pious Buddhists” who have since purchased lands and built houses in the area who find this “door step temple” great urban comfort luxury and amenity? When Wesak Poya or some Poya day of importance comes they come to the temple in great numbers and in a frenzy and madness of Buddhist belief and rituals and conduct themselves according to what they believe and what the monk says Buddhism and Buddhist rituals hoping in next life or after many lives of “happy and prosperous” existence they would finally achieve Nirvana!

    So the alternative is the denial, negation, condemnation and riddance of that which does not constitute real religion. A study of ancient books on Buddhism would reveal great details and guidelines for the serious and initiative.

  93. Dear Chandimal

    A study of ancient books on Buddhism would reveal great details and guidelines for the serious and initiative.

    But those ancient books were written and maintained by the “rogue monks.” If you read them closely you’ll see what I mean.

  94. Dear Wije, don’t be a child. This leads nowhere. You must be able to differentiate between rogue monks and the genuine ones. Still there may be a mixture of both. The ancient monks who wrote these things are not rogues. Walk into MD Gunasena Book Shop and find a collection of these writings. Ven. Rerukane Chandrawimala has written these in simple form. You can download some of them from the internet as well. More importantly no book or monk can give you illumination and salvation. You have to find it out yourself. Lord Buddha discovered it sitting under a tree! No book, no god, no devil or no human was there to help him!

    This is the problem with mediocre average middling people who hope someone will come along and give them everything spiritual and religious-the salvation. This behavior may be a spill-over from the nasty habit of expecting everything free from the government: free education, free health care, free food stamps, free books, free uniforms, free kerosene, free this and free that. That is why Sinhalese donkeys believed Sirima Bandaranayake would bring them rice from the moon vouching to even eat fodder if she tells them to! This Sinhalese nation is a wonderful nation! They worship a borrowed religion. At the time of introducing Buddhism in to this country they were a savage nation with the king chasing after innocent deer for hunting to have a sinister pleasure! This nation was fathered by a notorious bandit exiled from the neighbour. They talk about sovereignty and their own home grown solutions to the problems but they follow the British format of constitution with countless tampering cosmetic surgeries and omissions and commissions! From dawn to dust Buddhism blares galore all over yet persons just disappear into thin air after being sought after by white vans! You have to accept your portion of responsibility if you want to surmount the problems in the world.

  95. Chandimal – spot on – I am glad that there are at least some Sinhalese who are brave enough to call a spade a spade.

    Siddharta Gauthama will be mortified by the Buddhism that is practised in his name in mother Lanka. We are a nation that is devoid of truth, honesty, integrity , transparency ( I can go on ) and yet deludes itself in assuming we are a nation that adheres to the practises and values of Buddhism.

    A nation that is is so rife with corruption at all levels that if the corruption is eliminated the country will come to standstill as the metaphorical wheel will not turn.

    Leaders who enrich themselves at the expense of the exchequer whilst at the same time adhering to all sorts of Buddhist rituals which are in fact totally contradictory to the teachings of the Buddha.

    The Sanga, which is also corrupt to the core, simply incapable of understanding the basic concept of the very religion that they are the custodians of.

    In the words of the the Buddha – ” however many holy words you read, however many holy words you speak, what good will they be if you don’t act upon them? “

  96. Dear Chandimal

    The ancient monks who wrote these things are not rogues

    I am sure you are aware of the story how Queen Maha Pajapati Gotami (Buddha’s mother) became a nun. In the Vinaya version of the story, the Buddha states that as a result of women being allowed to be ordained, the Dhamma will last only 500 years instead of 1,000. In all fairness, this claim is not found in the Sutta Pitaka.

    So how would you reconcile:

    1) the misogynism of the Vinaya and

    2) the fact that the Buddha, according to the Vinaya, was wrong- that the Dhamma has lasted not 500 or 1,000 years but over 2,500 years? If the Vinaya is mistaken and the Buddha did not really say this, then why did the author(s) of Vinaya who were monks lie about what he said?

  97. Dear Wije,

    Skepticism, questioning your most sacred books, idols, your very religion, its core teachings, values, belief and its most sacred ultimate meaning and destination is an essential part of your enquiry and exploration into true religion. Now that you have traced this disparity it seems you have seriously thought about these aspects of our books and I am sorry to say I am not an expert to answer you here. What I can I do is to tell you what I think about it.

    I think sexual drive and need is the most strong and persistent in living beings. Had it not been there species shall go extinct. So here is a wonderful invention of the nature to reinvent the metaphorical wheel of reincarnation and survival-you don’t really die but another sapling, a prototype, a seed of life is rekindled before you completely undergo the laws of decay in this volatile existence-the desire for sexual fulfillment.

    Now think of the scenario where worldly and earthly human beings both male and female who naturally inherit nature’s strongest drive for sex are ordained in a monastery to seek salvation from rebirth which is the cause for all the sufferings living beings undergo! It should be very clear now that such a situation would make life very hard for all the inhabitants of the monastery and their aim and purpose would be compromised. You can of course argue that they should adhere to the rules of conduct, that their emotions must be controlled or condemned etc. which of course would lead to another conflict and war within their own heart mind and desires!

    So that may be why this reluctance and precaution may have been come into existence. Of course these types of things are conditional because individual characteristics vary. More over as I said earlier too all these books, beliefs and teachings only serve as mere guidelines and vague and obscure track marks to a profound and spiritual phenomenon which is so subtle that out of billions of world population only a handful of humans in the known history of mankind seem to have come upon it. So dear Wije, question while you can but please don’t build intellectual theories and allow them to be obstacles in a journey whose dimensions are unknown and Buddha exists no more to ask for an answer! You can’t question all the time should try to see if there is anything any meaning beyond the written lines! There writings may have inked only the prominent and essential aspects and the subtleties would have been left to the aspirant to understand! In the modern era where we have every facility of communication and writing still we find it very hard to put our thoughts into ink and consider those early days where writing facilities virtually were nonexistent!

    As for existence of Buddhism for more than 1000 years I really doubt what you have understood as Buddhism. Buddhism is just a name used to speak about a state of mind a human being can come upon. You can still be in it and later call it Coca Cola instead of Buddhism! To my understanding the real initial perceived state of mind of this phenomenon is the mind of “Sovan” state of mind. And when you look around in Sri Lanka where you say Buddhism has existed more than 1000 years how many “Sovan” beings do you think we have in the country? If what exists today you say is Buddhism I say God save Lord Buddha and Buddhists in Sri Lanka!

    To indicate the bounds and strata the human mind can shatter in its self-made egoistic cage a very old tele-drama I saw in a TV channel goes:

    There was a pious ascetic living in mountain cave situated by a beautiful river aspiring to attain Nirvana. And there was a husband, a beautiful wife and their child living in the nearby village who used to offer alms to this ascetic in great veneration and devout and devoted religious pursuit personifying real religious devotedness. The beautiful wife visited the ascetic once a day to offer alms and as time went on the ascetic grew affection towards this beautiful lady. As the ascetic could no longer hide his feelings he revealed his feelings to the lady and after several attempts he could capture the mind of the lady and they began to lead a family life in the ascetic’s monastery. The husband visited the monastery and implored the wife to come back but she refused. Husband returned empty handed and lived alone along with his child. Time went on and the former ascetic too had a child and he had to face all the problems of an ordinary layman. The former ascetic’s problems were worse because he did not know any profession to earn a livelihood and the household problems frequently knocked on their door. Finally the former ascetic come to a conclusion, took the wife and the child and went to the former husband’s house and appealed him to accept them apologizing and acknowledging that he had made a blunder due to the blind nature of lust that his religious pursuit had been compromised and implored that he be given a chance to restart his religious pursuit from where he left. The former husband though outwardly a poor villager farmer but inwardly an exceptionally understanding broadminded religious and magnanimous human being forgot about the past accepted his former wife with the new child and asked the disenchanted ascetic, “ I would once again worship thy feet, offer you alms, protect you from the perils of nature, please return to thy former monastery and walk the distance thou yet could not tread but wandered due to one faltering step of this endless journey of boundless Samsara. I appreciate into this sea of Samsara thou hath descended upon to conquer, a feat I could not myself embark on, but thy design same as mine taken control over by this beautiful female figure for a wink in this laborious journey of Samsara, go ascetic and accomplish your mission and show me the light as well”!

  98. hey chandimal,i know this story.You have omitted to mention the fact that this villager was a merchandiser of second hand goods,luckily for the ascetic.

  99. Dear Dushy,

    Nice article, and well articulated. That’s why it has hit the right spot. Please do not be bothered to respond to Kahapola , his writings depict who he is and that’s an educated( very questionable) idiot!

    It looks like this man knows you personally , Unfortunate for you as Buddha said once “to associate with the fools is a dukka”.

    It also shows how deep our society has rotten ( To the core in my opinion),

    Chandimal looks like some one who knows the simple truth of life. Good for us if he keeps writing.

  100. Dear Chandimal,

    “Buddhism is just a name used to speak about a state of mind a human being can come upon. You can still be in it and later call it Coca Cola instead of Buddhism! To my understanding the real initial perceived state of mind of this phenomenon is the mind of “Sovan” state of mind. And when you look around in Sri Lanka where you say Buddhism has existed more than 1000 years how many “Sovan” beings do you think we have in the country? If what exists today you say is Buddhism I say God save Lord Buddha and Buddhists in Sri Lanka!”

    Buddhism is a philosophy , a way of living taught by Buddha. It is not a state of mind actually, it is the Teaching of Buddha. In Buddha’s teaching there are states of mind one can achieve and they are from the the first to last, 1) Sován 2)Sakurdhágámi 3) Anágámi 4) Arahath.

    When one attain the state of mind Arahath then he is enlightened. Becoming Sován is the first step to enlightenment.

    In Buddha’s teaching there was no rituals and he clearly stated the validity of Pragmatism rather than the rituals.

    Buddhism is not a religion as most think, it is a philosophy, a way of living. You can be a Buddhist without going to temples , without worshiping these rogue monks, without any of these silly rituals. Just follow the five precepts and you are a Buddhist.

    Buddhism is based on the four noble truths and the eight fold path as depicted in the Dharmacakra Pravartana Sūtra (Setting in Motion the Wheel of the Dharma) the first teaching of Buddha

    My question is How many of these so called Buddhist know this simple fact? How many of these people comment here know that they are actually not Buddhists? (Not even close to being a real Buddhist)

  101. Dear Dr Upul Kumara,

    You are very correct and explained it clearly. I seem not to have worded my thoughts clearly and you have understood it differently. Let me rephrase my thoughts:

    A human being living anywhere in the world may come upon the states of mind which have been described in Buddhism as Sovan, Sakrudagami, Anagami and Arhat. These are universal truths which do not depend on Buddhism or Coca Cola or on anything man made for their existence or being rediscovered by another human being. Prior to the discovery of this truth by Buddha there was no such a religion as Buddhism in the world. Buddhism was born after passing away of Buddha and due to the need of contemporary people to preserve the knowledge, ways and means, conduct etc. that would lead to the discovery of the truth that was revealed by Buddha. Therefore they wrote the doctrine in books, continued the monkhood and established all the paraphernalia surrounding Buddhism as seen today. Today Buddhism may have undergone various alterations, modifications, additions and omissions. However the overwhelming truth is that had Lord Buddha not discovered this truth and established this Buddhist Doctrine (Budu Sasuna) ordinary human beings would not have had even a glimpse of what it means to be emancipated from sorrow! So Buddhism does matter, overwhelmingly important and yet at the same time it may be useless because the ultimate truth sought after by man does not depend on any religion philosophy or methodology. You need a scaffolding to build a house, to reach the upper walls but you don’t get stuck in the scaffolding or try to improve the scaffolding instead of the house! What is important is ascending on the scaffolding that would demolish the house of greed, hate and ignorance that makes the human “me, the ego”. But you don’t use decayed ropes to build the scaffolding!

    Sentiments such as those raised by you should come from more quarters. There must be the negation, discouragement and withdrawal of false Buddhism and encouragement, patronage and unfolding and flowering of the true Buddhism.

  102. Dear Chandimal,

    It makes sense now, and I agree, thanks.

    Any philosophy, be it Hinduism, Christianity, Islam or Buddhism evolves in to a religion, according to how the common people see it and around this philosophy people develop there own rituals, practices and definition of the philosophy itself the way they see it. This collection of rituals etc makes a religion around a philosophy, and this is the problem with most people in SL today.

    They all call themselves as Buddhists, but they don’t know the basic teaching of Buddha! I called my mother this morning and asked her what she thinks is Buddhism and she was clueless.( She is a devoted Buddhist!) I simply explained to her what the Buddha taught and it took only about 10 minutes for me to tell her that. It may take a lot to follow the path and that’s a different story, but Buddhism is not something that is difficult to understand.

    If we were real Buddhists, we wouldn’t have had most these problems that are occurring in our country today and that’s a sad fact.

  103. While there are few very good monks in Sri Lanka, the majority of Buddhist monks are corrupt. First of all the Buddhist has to realize that Buddhism is not a religion but a way of life.

    Even the lord Buddha escaped to the forest for the reason that he could not hold up to his peoples sin, so what can we expect from the modern day Buddhist monks.

    I know most of the Buddhist monks in Sri Lanka are in to sexuality or politics. They cheat the poor citizen’s with their dress and preaching philosophy.

  104. Shankar, Your comments represent your values, humane attitudes and depth or triviality of your thoughts. Human mind from the moment it comes out of womb begins to be conditioned and spoiled by the world we have created in the form of our culture and civilization-not the features and landscapes of this marvelous earth! You may have conceived the idea what makes a human being a second-hand goods! It is exactly because of this degenerative tendency of human mind that we always try to read, resort to, follow and adopt “good attitudes, thoughts and ideals” although whether we can really “grow” these types of “virtues” is a different question. What is your actual relationship to your wife or children? Are they commodities and goods that you possess and consume while you treads this land? And do they become second-hand goods when you consider they have transgressed a certain mental idea that you have acquired from your “culture”? Don’t you think this “moral culture” is actually “wicked immorality” and that you must surmount all the odds of your culture to find any deep meaning to yours and mine lives? You need a revisit and re-correction of your attitudes if you want to show any seriousness and intention of purpose!

  105. Chandimal,i was just joking.You are right about not calling a human being a second hand goods.The villager did the correct thing in taking her back.A friend of mine also had the same experience,and his wife left him and lived with a white man for about an year and came back to him.Then she seems to have left him again,but this time to another country,not with any man.Must be a person who feels that grass in greener over the hill.This kind of restlessness in us can only be corrected by following the bhuddha’s teachings.

    I have embarked on this voyage.It is easier said than done.Dr.Upul kumara said that he explained to his mother what was bhuddhism in 10 minutes.However to practice it will take a life time,because it is like pushing against a strong wind,which is our own DNA and human characteristics.I think i have succesfully overcome the first hurdle which is to supress one’s desires,but that is only for any new ones.I ‘am finding it extremely difficult to get rid of the ones that i have already accumulated,but i’am trying to dispose of my assets and loved ones , one by one and try to manage without them anymore.This will take many years,i’am afraid but before i leave this world i hope to become an ascetic.

  106. Dear Shankar,

    Generally outwardly all human beings are the same-we all have the same anatomy, same feelings, same problems, same desires, same consciousness, same sorrow, same hopes, same despair, same blood and same death, inwardly we all want to be free from same sorrow and attain same happiness and same salvation from the perils of existence. Physically materially and outwardly we have tried everything since the beginning of man on earth but we have failed. Man’s problems today are the same as those of the most primitive man thousands of years ago-of course they can be more complex today. That is why this thing call religion has come into existence. Despite this general outward similarity of human beings there have been some exceptional variants who have given great deal of thought and efforts in delving deep into this idea of “religion” and they have spoken of the findings they made to the greater good of their suffering fellow human beings. Lord Buddha no doubt is the one who spoke of this truth in the most effective way that would leave its traces for the greatest period of man’s history so that anyone interested in it may rediscover it for himself. Buddha’s teachings have now handed down for more than 2500 years and the original version of teachings may or may not have undergone modifications omissions and additions. One has to consult both the books and those who are serious and who practice it.

    India has been the birth place and cradle of those rare individuals who gifted these discoveries to the world and the whole world must be thankful to India for being the mother to such great and noble human beings. However the natural tendency in the world including India as well is for the good things go underground and all the useless things to emerge like weed raising heads eclipsing the paddy growth. Since you said you are serious about this aspect of life I suggest you could resort to the observations and revelations made by yet another unique individual from India-J Krishnamurti-whose first hand discoveries and teachings without any tampering are available today in his books and in the internet as well. I don’t know whether complete teachings of him are available online for free. There are sites that say they will give you them if you pay. His sermons make us feel what the Buddha may have told 2500 years ago and what the fake monks have done to Buddhism afterwards.

  107. Dear shankar, search the internet and find links to J Krishnamurti. He seems to have discovered what Buddha has discovered. His teachings will greatly help you.

  108. Dear Shankar/Chandimal,

    Life has taught me it’s lessons, and this how I see it;

    All human beings are born with their genetical codes for variety of feelings, sensations, and thought processes. the environment around this human being further nurture and shape the individual and their thought process. Based on the thought process, this individual acts and their actions, be it activity , mental actions or verbal actions will determine the character.

    The summation of all the acts by this individual makes the person they are. There are many facets to this individual and this individual acts in different ways in different occasions depending on the circumstances.

    There is also another fact I want to make emphasis here.

    All individuals act on a scale. the two extremes of the scale are Wild (with just the born genetical behavior) and the super human being who has attain the highest possible enlightenment. Imagine this scale is a simple straight line and people are lined on the scale depending on the summation of their actions. If you take any given individual, they oscillate around a certain point in this scale and the summation of the actions will determine which extreme this individual is close to or whether this individual is more in the middle.

    What we try to do is to get ourselves more close to the enlightened end of the scale and it needs a lot of psychological exercise, as Buddha said “the mind precedes”.

  109. Dear Shankar, Have you visited the web sites I suggested and if so please post your experience.

  110. Dear,Chandimal,i did read a bit about J.krishnamurthi,but could not continue because of time constraints.I will read some more in my leisure time when my mind is at peace and come back to you.

    So far from what i read,i was indeed intrigued by this gentleman a lot.I believe he died in 1986 and lived upto 90 years.Many people would not have lived such a long ripe life in that era.

    Also his life seemed to have changed due to him going frequently to a river beach in india when he was 14,where another british person from a theosophical society also used to come to.This englishman seemed to think he had special characteristics that would make him a great teacher one day and groomed him.His unselfish nature seemed to attract this man to him.Are these chance encounters that change your life completely,really ‘chance’encounters or are they deliberately arranged by someone else,who is on a higher plateau than us and organising such meetings?I tend to think so.

    I was also surprised that he criticised the practices and rituals of buddhist monks and sanyasis.That means he does not agree with what Lord Buddha told them to do in their day to day lives as monks.So krisnamurti will not agree with them being celibate.I also feel that it is unfair on them,and has resulted in bad image due to some of them deviating.How do you expect to repress natural urges,without dire consequences?First of all we must remember we are human,before anything else,and start building up from there.However i’am a firm believer in controlling one’s desires,instead of letting desires control you,as the Bhuddha taught.It is the key to real happiness.

    One thing i totally agree with krishnamurti,is when he says that his teachings should not be taught by others after him.Exact opposite of Lord Buddha who asked monks to go forth and spread his teachings.See what has happened by those monks corrupting his teachings and forming their own versions of buddhism,such as the taliban buddhism in srilanka and the lifting of the robes and urinating in a mosque.What is the use of people saying Lord Bhuddha must be turning in his grave,when he himself made the mistake of appointing people to don the robes and continue his teachings.Did he not realise the frailty of humans and how they will corrupt his teachings,but take cover under his name and the orange robes and use buddhism to enhance their power and privileges in society.Krisnamurti certainly has a point when he says nobody is to continue on his behalf,because that way his thoughts and teachings will be unadulterated for centuries.

  111. wake up all of you thıs was not a genuıne case ….all part of a plot to use crımes of sexual vıolence as war crımes ….ıt ıs tıme that all truly patrıotıc srı lankans sınghalese tamıls muslıms and burghers stop demonısıng theır country and wake up ….check out peter kellener comments about chogom and all should be obvıous ….really dısgraceful that those ıdıot eelamısts dont realıse they wıll be ın the dock for antı terror crımes

  112. Dear Shankar, As you read and listen to JK more and more you will understand more precisely what he has told. Let me comment on some points mentioned by you from the understanding I gained throughout the years of contemplating on these issues.

    About his younger age ‘chance’ encounters and phenomena I really don’t know or not able to comment because it is beyond my understanding capacity. Perhaps there may be certain things in the world that we can’t really explain or understand why they happen or why such things have been reported. We can question them but we can neither accept nor reject them. May be our primitive stage perception capacity can not understand those things yet.

    A one to one comparison on JK and Buddha cannot be made with the objective of deriving a common denominator. Of course a common denominator may be obtained but not at the level most of us want it to be. JK and Buddha were born in totally two different eras of the world history. During Buddhas era means of communication was only through mouth to mouth. Other means of communication was virtually non-existent. So Buddha had to establish Monkhood and entrust each monk the duty of disseminating his doctrine. Should there be any need for a clarification Buddha was there to help. The simple life style of the people in that time of history made it possible for most of them to understand the simple facts of life comparatively easily than the present day so called “intelligent” and complex and complicated human beings. The majority of people in those days were not dishonest people as the present-day ones as evidenced and witnessed by astonishing religious masterpieces erected by them. Though lacked in modern-day know-how and high tech tools and equipment, they built astonishing monuments temples and statues using only the best raw materials and techniques so that they would last thousands of years! In the barren soil of the world history they have planted nurtured and caused to blossom the most honest flower of their faith so that those of us after thousands of years after them may still witness their genuineness in their religious pursuit. Not only did they used best material available to them to personify their true pursuit but they buried their precious gems, gold and other precious material as additional testimony and unwavering trust in their path of life. (And today the beggars in the Rajapaksha family are digging the hearts and souls of our ancestors to fulfill their sinful criminal and robbery mentality!) JK was born in modern communication ear and had no problem of passing his teachings using CDs, Books, Booklets, Video and Audio recordings, internet etc. and hence could safely exclude the “interpreter” whom the Buddha had to employ.

    If you listen to JK more closely you will understand his criticisms of Buddhist practices and rituals would act as a light to free ourselves from the religious cages we have created and imprisoned ourselves in. When you listen to him there is no question of agreeing or disagreeing with him but you are exploring, discovering, thinking and taking a journey together with him so that both you and him see the same things, walk the same path, breath the same breeze, discovers the same fact. This is what Lord Buddha did 2500 years ago! They say hundreds upon hundreds of people attained Nirvana while and at the end of listening to Lord Buddha! JK asks: “while you are listening here and observing yourself together with the speaker, can you end sorrow, or can you end your hate, or can you end your jealousy?” Transformation is instant and the key to it is the instant understanding of the fact. So lust, being celibate or not, suppressing desires or natural desires has quite a different meaning in what he says. You can’t possibly end your desires without understanding the basic facts about why and how desire is born and sustained. Everybody tells us how to suppress desire but nobody knows how it ends! If you study closely what he says he is Buddha personified. But if you get caught in theories you can be like you for the rest of your life but there won’t be any freedom from sorrow.

    Think of this simple question JK asks of you: “Who is the entity that wants to suppress desire, that says “I want to control my desire, sex drive or what ever it is? Is that entity different from the desire itself or the entity itself is desire? And can the desire end itself? When thought says “I want to end myself as desire” it is still thought wanting to achieve something and so the mind is playing tricks with itself”

  113. Dear Dr Upul Kumara, You are most welcome and do write your thoughts after being in contact and communication with this new wisdom of looking at the problem in a different way!

  114. Dear Chandimal,I agree with you one hundred percent on what you say “JK was born in modern communication ear and had no problem of passing his teachings using CDs, Books, Booklets, Video and Audio recordings, internet etc. and hence could safely exclude the “interpreter” whom the Buddha had to employ.” The mistake i made was to not take into account the two eras in which Jk and Lord buddha existed,which was 2500 years apart.

    In other Buddhist countries the monks have not brought disrepute to buddhism,only in Srilanka.I wonder why that is so?Could it be because poor people are going and giving their children to the pansala,to escape poverty?These poor kids get sexually abused and when they grow up the abused becomes the abuser.Also their minds are not geared to monkhood when they become monks,because they have not become matured enough to enter monkhood,and did not do so voluntarily when they were pushed into it by their parents.I feel this is a type of child abuse just like the conscription of children by the LTTE,nad should be banned by the government.There should be a law that prohibits child monks,because they turn out into warped personalities when they become adults.

    However,i don’t think it is the only reason because other buddhist countries also must be accepting children for monkhood.In srilanka,i think the monks are a pampered lot.The state gives them money and property,which actually belongs to the people.The state has no right to do that.The Buddha has asked them to get alms from the people directly.How many come to your doorstep asking for alms in srilanka?They wait like lords in the temple because the state gives them everything.Also politicians go and fall a their feet,which the buddha would have disapproved of.In my opinion the state should not give any money or property to any religion and should appropriate everything back to the people to which they rightfully belong.If the religion is indeed doing a service for the people,then they can exist by direct donations from the people.At present, they do not need to rely on the people.Nothing free should be given to them,including water or electricity and it should be for all religions,hindu,muslim and christian,catholic and buddhist.Let them exist in their own right,just like any other entity and not through the governments.Why should they get any special treatment from anyone else who is providing a service to the people,whether in the form of commercial services or spirituality.Did the taxpayers give permission for such special treatment for religious institutions? It is not the money that i’am talking about,but the fact that discipline is compromised.

    As for what you say that desire is a part and parcel of us and if we try to end it we will end ourselves,i do not go to such extent of ending all desires in me.I only want to have control over my desires,without allowing them to take control of me.I have seen people end up in a traincrash as a wreck because they allowed desire to control them.It was one after another of desires.They were never satisfied and wanted more and more.The more they got,the more they wanted.I also got caught up in this mad goose chase,and now i want out.I want to reverse this process,not end it completely,because as you rightly pointed out krishnamurti said that will end us also.

  115. Dear chandimal,I foind this quote by krishnamurti very intriguing.

    “Most of us are frightened of dying because we don’t know what it means to live. We don’t know how to live, therefore we don’t know how to die. As long as we are frightened of life we shall be frightened of death.”

    – J. Krishnamurti, Freedom from the Known, p. 77

    I’am not frightened of life,but i’am certainly frightened of death,and as death comes closer,as it will inevitably will,i will become more and more frightened.It is the fear of the unknown i will be going into that is the main cause.I once spoke to a cancer patient and he said it was the fear of not knowing what is going to happen to him,that is making him so afraid.He was not very religious and i suppose did not believe in god.My mum who is very religious,is nearing her end,and i discern her fear too,but not as much as the gentleman i mentioned who did not seem to have belief in god.

    So we have to establish the fact that whether god exists or not,in order to ameliorate this fear of death.If we know for certain that he does exist,then we will know that if we have lived a decent life we will be looked after by him.So the fear of the unknown is not there and we can die peacefully without tossing and turning with fright.

    What does krishnamurti say about the existence of god?

    We have been adventurers,exploring vry nook and cranny of this planet,and now other planets too,but we have not rationally done the most important exploration of all,which is to find out the existence of god,which will in turn provide insights into our own existence.We have always concentrated on turning our energies and best brains in finding out more and more about the external forces instead of the internal ones that are the foundations of our very existence,which is a pity indeed.A waste of manpower and resources,like looking for everything,but not the most important one of all which is the existence of god.I have asked some scientists why you are using your brains for other things ,but not this one,and there is no clear answer,excepts that most of them keep an open mind on it.It looks like they have put it into the too hard basket,and also before they die they want to be remembered to have unearthed something or other that is much easier to find and will bring them some glory,whereas proving the existence of god may become a wasted effort.What a waste of the best brains and talent in the world.As a result people have to just blindly accept or not accept what their religion says,and in turn have to rely on the priests and monks for interpretation,who in turn would have blindly and unquestioningly accepted what another priest or monk told them and so forth,or read the holy books that are again written by humans with god knows what came into their minds at that time when they wrote them,and what motives they had.

  116. Dr Upul Kumara,

    Thank you for your kind words. I don’t know Kahapola. He is a friend of the exiled journalist Uvindu Kurukulasuriya who writes to the Sunday Leader. I try to interact with Kahapola to help him, but I accept that its an uphill task.

    I know Seevali who has commented here quite well and met him for dinner yesterday and he asked me to visit this page again. I am glad I did, as I was able to read all the new comments and am encouraged by the view points mentioned here.

  117. Dear shankar,

    What it means to “really live” with joy peace happiness beauty and full of love, and to “rally die” completely irrevocably and forever, living and dying from moment to moment, living with death, what is fear, what is innocence which is the condition of the brain that is not only not able to hurt others but also a brain that is not able to be hurt, why are we frightened of death, and what is god or is there something called god at all; all these questions are being discussed and pondered over at JK’s various books, talks and questions and answers sessions. I am not really qualified to answer these things because I haven’t undergone the required mental transformation and real understanding to say something about these things. You can be more involved in JK’s doctrine to gain an understanding into these aspects.

    What I can do reveal is my intellectual and logical understanding gained after being exposed to JK’s teachings. However logical and intellectual understanding is not the complete and ultimate intuition without which humans would not be able to transcend their mediocrity.

    Without even embarking on a religions pursuit I see there is a vast ocean of problems created by man on this earth. The problems of poverty, disparity, cruelty, innumerable problems caused by stupid and corrupt politicians and officials; general decline of human beings morally ethically and religiously; people are getting more and more reserved, ignorant, compartmentalized, narrow and selfish without any feeling of aesthetics beauty serenity and silence; people are opting to live in more and more narrow plots of lands and space constrained houses; our lands are getting more and more polluted and cluttered with litter, enormous garbage dumps are everywhere and people have lost sense of both beauty cleanliness and ugliness and filth; natural resources of earth, its fauna and flora are fast disappearing and the man is colonizing this marvelous earth in every nook and corner; everywhere you look around there is destruction. If you want to feel any sense of oneness with nature you have to go to a faraway place devoid of man and where the arm of development has not intervened and intruded excessively. In the name of development man has embraced destruction and enormous problems. There is uncontrolled population growth, property developers are destroying the land, an equally stupid government run by equally dull witted politicians have no answers to any of these problems; the country is sailing in uncharted gale waters with no one at the helm. People have to put their house in order first before they think of anything supra-mundane.

    To bring about a transformation in the world each individual himself has to undergo transformation within and without him. Each individual is the rest of the mankind because we all are the same. The term individual also means indivisible. You are not separate from the rest of the mankind. You are the rest of the mankind! So an individual transformed can affect the rest of the mankind. Lord Buddha did that, Krishnamurthi did that, so has Carl Marx or Hitler or Prabhakaran though on a separate note on life. Man is interconnected like in a net. If one strand is broken the whole net begins to falter. First there must be law and order in the society, then order in one’s life and family, then in order in one’s relationship to others, to humans and to nature. Without laying this foundation man is doomed to destroy himself and the other and the world.

    It is true that we do not know how to live. That is why we have created so many problems. Our society and culture is the outward expression of our inner quality and morality. What is our society and culture? Isn’t it utter immorality and chaos and exploitation? So that is what we really are! We go to temple clad in white or to Church or to Mosque or whatever it is with all our religious beliefs, faiths, rituals, customs and veneration etc. but the very gathering, performance, the very outward appearance and the core analysis does not portend any worthwhile meaning or deep religious pursuit. Of course most religious activities translate themselves into chaos and superstition specially the Buddhist kind.

    Only unique human beings gifted with rate qualities can really personify the great and noble human qualities discovered by great religious personalities in the history of the world. This is not an impossibility. This is human possible. If one applies oneself one can walk this path. If you give your heart, your mind, your everything, your whole being to the discovery of yourself you will achieve it. In JK’s own words “the first step is the last step”. If you want to end anger for example you look at it completely, every movement it makes, its birth, its continuity and its demise. When you look at anger so completely with everything you have you will understand it completely! And that is the end of anger! And may be meditation as well! And imagine a society and a world where anger is in the decline and dwindle!

    God is the creation of man! We can create any number of gods we want! And worship or hate them too! You love your god and I love my god and hate your god or vice versa! However sanctified glorified ancient or modern however huge or how many heads or hands attributed our gods are only good or bad as ourselves! We may worship the god in our mind or we will pay a mason to assemble that god into our particular liking using mud, sand, cement and paint and then mass-worship or privately worship that god but it is still thought worshipping itself! Thought conceives the idea of godhood out of its loneliness misery confusion and despair and then gives that god physical form through a pile of elements on the earth and then associates that god concept with that object and worships it! On to the bargain we so aggressively safeguard that “my god” pile of earth that we will not hesitate to kill anyone who desecrate “my God”!

    So we really do not know who god is or whether something called god really exist. But we do know that god is associated with everything good. According to Buddhists people who lead a good and religious life will be born as gods. So if this concept of god is not a myth they have a real chance of meeting god! As for those who simply believe in god in heaven or somewhere I don’t see any logical possibility of fulfilling their aspirations except their belief! And what is the quality of one’s mind that seeks to know about god? Has that mind put its house in order? Has it understood what thought is and its limitations? Has it understood what living and dying is? Has it seen all about hate, jealousy, greed and craving? And if not has such a mind’s seeking god, pursuit into the existence of god any validity except mere intellectual discussion? I think in the realm of spirituality scientists are just miserable entities dealing though their human sphere sensory organs in matter and material aspects and actions and reactions and they will never know about god because their unit of measure is thought and godhood seems to associate itself with extra-sensory sphere. Some may hope some sort of gadgetry, a special camera, a meter or a multi-meter would provide a peep into the abode of god! But who cares about a god who lives under an oscilloscope?

  118. dear chandimal,thank you for your very illuminating reply.I have to totally agree with you on your explanation of why we do not know how to live.That is the crux of the problem for our self imposed sorrows.

    However while we strive in improve ourselves in this regard,we should also try to communicate with god.Then the question arises about his existence,because how do we communicate otherwise.

    You may be right when you say,quote”God is the creation of man! We can create any number of gods we want!Thought conceives the idea of godhood out of its loneliness misery confusion and despair and then gives that god physical form through a pile of elements on the earth and then associates that god concept with that object and worships it!So we really do not know who god is or whether something called god really exist.”,unquote,however i feel it is not simple as that and there may be many other reasons for people to believe in god too.

    People may have started to believe in god because they have had experiences that cannot be simply explained by any other way.I do not want to go into that in detail,because all of us when we think back on our lives will realise that so many things have happenned that cannot be just explained away as pure coincidence.There seems to be a certain charted course for us to follow and the word destiny probably came into existence due to this.However much we try our best to veer away from this set path called our destiny,we seem to fail.

    Another reason for people to believe in god is the absolute perfection and coordination with which everything on this planet has been created.This would have made people think that only a supernatural being could do it.For example they would have known that the earth is exactly at the right distance from the sun.They would have felt the heat as well as the cold due to the presence and absence of the sun.They could have visualised what would have happened to them,if the sun was a bit far away or a bit closer.The human brain would have known that a little bit closer and they would have been fried up and a little bit farther and they would have frozen up.That would have been one reason,why the inca’s and ancient egyptions worshipped the sun,mistaking it for god,because they knew that sustenance of life was only possible due to the sun.

    Modern scientists have not explained how the sun became at the exact distance to the earth,so that life is possible here.They have explained the big bang theory and made out that this is all a creation of an accident that happened billions of years ago,but have they calculated the probability of that accident bringing planet earth to revolve exactly at the correct distance to the sun,in order to sustain all of us.Mathematicians can give us probabilities for winning a lottery,but they cant or don’t want to work in conjunction with scientists and give us probabilities for that exact distance occurring due to the big bang theory.That is because their mentality is trained to disprove the existence of god,not to prove otherwise.

    I can give many other examples such as this,but this may not be the forum for it.My mind will of course continue to work in this direction in the future seeking answers,as it is important for me.

Comments are closed.