27 June, 2019

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A Brief History Of Christianity In Sri Lanka

By Leonard Pinto

Dr. Leonard Pinto

In recent years the History of Sri Lanka has become an important subject, not only because it is in school curriculum, but also because it has been used to shape politics and justify the ethno-religious basis for State policies. Sri Lankan history has been rewritten, amplifying Portuguese atrocities, making authoritative claims on myths and mere conjectures and overlooking historical facts and archaeological discoveries.

Some Buddhist monks and nationalists are preaching an exclusive Buddhist-Sinhalese history that ends in intimidation, verbal abuse and violence against minorities. Prof. W.I. Siriweera, (Emeritus Professor of History at the University of Peradeniya) expressed his concerns on the misuse of History in Sri Lanka in saying that “the challenge for Sri Lankan historians today is to study, teach and write history, stripped of its myths, distortions, deformations and communal or religious bias…We are one people. Patriotism should encourage living in harmony” (The Sunday Times, March 17, 2013).

The History of Christianity in Sri Lanka can be divided into 3 eras;

(1)    Pre-colonial (72-1505)

(2)    Colonial (1505-1948) and

(3)    Post-colonial eras (1948- current).

The history of the pre-colonial era is aptly described by Archbishop Emeritus Dr Oswald Gomis (2004), in his book, ‘Some Christian Contributions in Sri Lanka’. During the pre-colonial era, two groups of Christians, St. Thomas Christians and Nestorian Christians lived in Sri Lanka, and later they established union with the Catholic Church. Historia Ecclesiastica of Nikephoros Xanthopulos written from Constantinople (present Turkey) states that St. Thomas the Apostle of Jesus preached to Brahamins on a hill at Ginthupitiya in the island of Taprobane. In the 5th century during the Sigiriya period, 75 ships carrying Murundi Christian soldiers from Mangalore (India) landed in Chilaw at the request of queen Sangha to protect her son King Dhatusena, after he defeated the Pandyans. Migara, King Dhatusena’s nephew and the commander of army was a Christian. His wife, the sister of Mogalan and Kashyapa was also a Christian. The discovery of coins of King Dhatusena with Christian symbols, statues of ‘Abissheka Buddha’ (Paranavithana 1972) and a carved cross on a granite column in Anurhadapura testifies for the presence of Christians in the 5th century. This was the 3rd such cross to be discovered, as De Queyroz (1688), the Jesuit Portuguese historian referred to a cross discovered by the Portuguese in the ruins of St. Thomas Church at the Mouth of Kelani River, Mutwal. When the Anurhadapura cross was discovered in 1912, the Archaeological Commissioner R. Ayrton thought that it was a Portuguese Cross, as it resembled the 2nd cross, found at Kotte, and Kotte was associated with the Portuguese. Later W. Cordrington confirmed that Anuradhapura cross was indeed the cross of St. Thomas Christians found in Mylapore, Chennai and not a Portuguese or Nestorian cross as previously thought (Figure 1).

(A) Anuradhapura cross

Cosmos Indicopleustes, an Egyptian monk who visited Sri Lanka in 550 wrote “The island has a church of Persian Christians who have settled there, and a presbyter who is appointed from Persia, and a deacon and a complete ecclesiastical ritual”. Muhammad Al-Idrisi, the Sicilian cartographer, who visited Sri Lanka between 1100 and 1166, found four of the16 advisors of the king were Christians. After Yahbalaha III, the Nestorian Primate accepted the union with the Catholic Church Fr. Jordanus Catalha arrived in Sri Lanka in 1329 and Fr. Giovanni de Marignolli as Papal Legate in 1348/49 to assist the Christians in the country. So, there were Christians in Sri Lanka before the arrival of Portuguese in the 16th century.

Portuguese arrived in Sri Lanka by accident in 1505, and established friendly relations with King Vira Parakramabahu VIII. Portuguese were involved in trade for the next 13 years. In 1521 the three sons of Vijayabahu VI killed him, divided the kingdom to three and ruled from Kotte, Sitawake and Raigma. When the ambitious Mayadunne of Sitawaka became a threat to Kotte of Buvanekabahu VII, he requested military aid from the Portuguese. In 1542 King Buvanekabahu sent a delegation to Portugal with a silver effigy of Prince Dharamapala, his grandson to be crowned by the king of Portugal and Franciscan missionaries were welcomed in Kotte. When Don Juan Dharmapala died in 1559 without an heir, he bequeathed his kingdom to the king of Portugal, the greatest betrayal of the country. The invitation of the Portuguese for assistance turned into a Portuguese invasion, as Portuguese claimed the right to the kingdom.

(B) St. Thomas’ cross, India

When Rajasinghe I, son of Mayadunne invaded Kandy in 1581, King Karalliyadde Bandara, baby daughter Kusumasana Devi and nephew Yamasinghe escaped to Portuguese territory. Following the death of Karalliyadde Bandara, Kusumasana Devi was brought up by the Portuguese as Dona Caterina in Mannar. Yamasinghe became Don Phillip and went to Goa. When Rajasinghe I conquered Kandy and appointed Virasundara Bandara of Peradeniya to govern Kandy, Rajasinghe imposed the policy of persecuting Buddhist monks. Rajasinghe had embraced Hinduism after killing Mayadunne and monks have rebuked him that he will be punished in his next births. The Hindu priest Arittakeevendu Perumal had offered an alternative through animal sacrifices. As Virasundara Bandara did not obey king’s orders, he was killed and his son Konappu Bandara took refuge with the Portuguese. He was baptized as Dom John of Austria and trained in Goa. In 1592, Portuguese took over Kandy, installed Yamasinghe (Don Phillip) as the king and Konappu Bandara (Dom John of Austria) as the commander of the Gannoruwa Fort.  Shortly, Yamasinghe was poisoned by Konappu Bandara. When the Portuguese proclaimed his 12-year son, Dom Joao as king, Konappu Bandara overthrew him and chased away the Portuguese from Kandy.

(C) Nestorian cross, China

In 1594, Portuguese brought the 13-year old Dona Catarina to Kandy, hoping to make her the queen of Kandy. Konappu Bandara defeated the Portuguese at Danture and took Dona Catarina as his queen becoming king Vimaladhrmasuriya I. Dom Joao, the son of king Yamasinghe joined the Portuguese, studied at the University of Coimbra, Portugal and was ordained a Catholic priest. He was the parish priest of the Church of Our Lady of the Gate of Heaven that he built at Telheiras Portugal, which exists to date. The King of Portugal looked after him well, with a royal grant. Prince Nikapitiye Bandara of Sitawaka also studied at the University of Coimbra, but died before his ordination. Vimaladharmasuriy I instituted the Temple of the Tooth. As they were familiar with Catholic environment, they had their children educated by Franciscan priests. When Vimaladharmasuriy I died in 1604, his cousin Senarat, an ex-Buddhist monk married Dona Catarina. King Senarat poisoned Dona Catarina’s eldest son Mahastane by Vimaladharmasuriya, and she spent the rest of her unhappy life at Wellimantotta, Kegalle. Before her death in 1613, at the age of 35 she called Marcellus Boschouwer, the Dutch Envoy and Kuruwita Rala and handed over the children to their care. She was given a Royal Catholic funeral. The perpetually burning lamp and the Mausoleum built by Kuruvita Rala and the 7 acres archaeological site set aside by H.C.P. Bell, the Archaeological commissioner in Rock Hill Estate have disappeared.

(D) Portuguese cross, Colombo Jetty. Note the typical lotus at the foot of the oriental crosses (St. Thomas’ & Nestorian crosses)

Portuguese also invaded Jaffna in 1560 after King Cankili I of Jaffna Kingdom killed 600 Catholics, the ‘Mannar Martyrs’ for their faith. Fishermen of Mannar had invited St. Francis Xavier from Goa to preach and baptize them in 1543. Paranirupacinkam, the elder brother of Cankili and king Pararasesekeram, princesses Dona Clara and Dona Antonia and prince Dom Constantino of the Jaffna became Catholics. The Catholics of the Kandian royalties included Jayaweera Bandara, Karalliyadde Bandara, Yamasinghe, Dona Catarina and her sons Kumarasinghe and Wijepala.

Church law forbids forced conversion to Catholicism, then as it is now. The spiritual values that the missionaries preached, their example, preference for life-style and some fringe benefits may have contributed to their conversions. The destruction of temples by the Portuguese needs to be assessed in the context of thinking of people (paradigm) about 500 years ago, when idolatry was considered to be an evil and when there was no international Human Rights Law or International Humanitarian Law. War is a great evil, and we have experience its atrocities, even in the 21st century. The recent ethnic war in Sri Lanka killed more than 100,000 and fully destroyed 93 churches and affected 2076 Hindu temples and shrines. Sri Lankan kings made the mistake of fighting among the brothers for power rather than co-operating, invited a foreign military force and bequeathed Sri Lanka to a foreign country.

Vimaladharmasuriya I invited the Dutch to evict the Portuguese. Admiral Joris van Spilbergen landed in Batticaloa in 1602 and by 1658 Admiral Rykloff van Goens captured Jaffna, evicting the Portuguese from the entire island. The Dutch banned Catholicism, expelled all Catholic priests and took over Catholic churches and schools. After 30 years in 1687 an Indian priest, Fr. Joseph Vaz came to Mannar, disguised as a coolie. In 1689 Dom Pedro, a layman had secretly arranged Christmas masses to be celebrated in Jaffna houses by Fr. Vaz, when the Dutch apprehended the Catholics gathered for the mass. Dom Pedro was badly beaten; he succumbed to flogging, becoming the ‘first Martyr of Jaffna’. Fr. Joseph Vaz escaped to Puttalam and then to Kandy. He was imprisoned by king Vimaladharmasuriya II, but later he was released. When an outbreak of smallpox occurred and people fled, Fr. Vaz and Fr. Carvalho cared for the sick and buried the dead, without contracting the disease. Fr. Vaz was allowed to build a church in Kandy, but his church was destroyed in 1745 after his death in 1711. Another scholarly priest to arrive from India was Fr. Jacome Gonsalves, who learnt Sinhala from the Buddhist monks of Malwatte. He excelled in poetry and music, and wrote 22 books in Sinhala, 14 in Tamil, 4 in Portugues and 1 in Dutch. He introduced simile to the Sinhalese literature. The Nayakkar king, Sri Vijay Rajasinghe expelled all the Catholic priests from Kandy in 1746. When king Kirti Sri Rajasinghe went to war with the Dutch in 1762, they brought mercenaries from Europe that included Catholics. As a result, Catholics were allowed to practice their religion.

British were also invited to replace king Sri Wickrema Rajasinghe, the tyrannical king of Kandy, by the Kandyan chieftains who escaped to Colombo. Governor Thomas Maitland gave freedom of religions in 1806. British conquered the entire Sri Lanka in 1815. Interested in developing the colony, the government invited institutions that could help in education and welfare. As the pirivena education did not provide secular education, foreign missionaries were welcome. The American missionaries who went to Jaffna established the first medical school in the country in 1848, twenty-two years before the Colombo Medical School. Dr. Samuel Fisk Green translated 8 medical books, including Gray’s Anatomy to Tamil and opened a hospital in Manipay, before the Colombo Hospital was established. The government adopted the denominational school system, which helped the Christian schools to expand rapidly. In 1886 missionary nuns were invited to work in public hospitals.

A surge of nationalism against the colonialists occurred towards the middle of 19th century, which took diverse forms. The anti-Christian feelings were high among the Buddhist-Sinhalese nationalists, and the expression of such feelings in debates as in the Panadura debate of 1862 turned into a violent clash at Kotahena in 1883 and the burning of a Catholic Church in Anuradhapura in 1903. After independence, anti-Christian sentiments were institutionalized in the take over of the Christian schools in 1960, removal of nuns from all public hospitals and cancellation of visas of missionary priests, Brothers and Sisters.  During the 26 years of ethnic war, there was another surge of Buddhist-Sinhala nationalism, which was characterized by the direct involvement of monks in politics, particularly through Jathika Hela Urumaya (JHU). After the end of the war, triumphalism is directing Buddhist-Sinhalese nationalism in confrontational and mutually exclusive direction through radical organizations, such as Bodu Bala Sena, Ravana Balaya and Sinhala Ravaya. The government shows little interest in applying the laws of the country to Buddhist monks, for their political advantages. Catholic Church in Sri Lanka is handling these issues calmly, prudently and judiciously.

*A summary of the presentation delivered to the Ceylon Society of Australia, Sydney on 25 Aug 2013

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Latest comments

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    Well…Sir !!.. I just would like to know , that …whether you are the same Pinto of the La Sallian Community !!? Lectured at the University of Peredeniya !!? Who used to sarcastically criticize the Eucharist !!?

    If that is so !!? I still recall your funny and realistic criticism on some christian rituals…..one such is a question you used to ask on those days in the 70s ….is…”Man …what is that magic ”!!? ” When a priest bless the bread and wine to turn into blood and body of Christ…it happens at once”…How is it man” !!?…was your question…….that paved me some inspirational ways …..Are you the man !!?

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      Dear Dr. Leonard Pinto,

      Thank you for the summary of Christianity in Sri Lanka.

      Would not it would have been wonderful and more peaceful if there was separation of Temple, Church and Mosque from the State from early times.

      “Rajasinghe imposed the policy of persecuting Buddhist monks. Rajasinghe had embraced Hinduism after killing Mayadunne and monks have rebuked him that he will be punished in his next births. The Hindu priest Arittakeevendu Perumal had offered an alternative through animal sacrifices”

      The above is an example of Trading one MYTH for another MYTH.

      It is interesting to see how the self-interest of the various actors, the Kings, the Priests, the Monks, and the colonizers all played a role in trying to establish their own Hegemony.

      However, no one can deny the critical role Christianity played in education, in the study of Natural Philosophy and the Sciences while promoting the Christian dogma, after the Islamic Philosophers and Scientists were downgraded by the Mullah and Ulama to push their dogma.

      The early scientists of the post-Colombian era were mostly trained and educated by the Christian Church along with Natural Philosophy and Mathematics and the other sciences, which the Islamic, Hindu and Buddhist traditions abandoned or downgraded.

      However, Joshua was incorrect in stopping the Sun for a day, and the Earth is Stationary is incorrect as well. While it may be true, the faithful have good intentions to “save” the faithful from Hell fire, bad rebirth, “apaya” etc., and lead them to Heaven, Nibbana or Nirvana,
      the fact remains that nobody, yes nobody, has ended at either of these above locations after death. This myth has been the cause of numerous wars and suffering, next to racism.

      However, religion has to be credited to some extent in mitigating the racism, even though some practitioners have used religion to their advantage to promote slavery and racism.

      It is interesting to see how the self-interest of the various actors, the Kings, the Priests, the Monks, and the colonizers all played a role in trying to establish their own Hegemony. We see that today as well.

      DeJa Vu……

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        It is because of the Christianity Free thinking Europeans who gave rise to Modern Science in Europe.

        Because, the Church said every thing in this Universe was created by the ALMIGHTY.

        but, some Free thinkers did not believe that and they worked against that. That is how the church got to burn so many documents of Galileo.

        When Darwin presented the Evolutionary theory Church and their cohorts were furious. Even todate Southern most Bible belt of the USA stays in the Dark by not teaching Evolutionary theory to Children.

        In buddhist perspective Evolutionary theory is incomplete.

        Evolutionary theory and Genomic can not explain completely the animal behaviour.

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      Dr. Pinto,

      You can compare Christianity to Islam, the other Abrahamic Religion, that wanted to reform Tribal Society and form an Egalitarian Society.
      The advent of Islam to Sri Lanka was not brutal, as it came from Traders and from Sufis like in South East Asia.

      However, it was later dominated by the Tribals, the Mullahs, the Ulema, the Wahhabis, men, who wanted ti assert their hegemony.

      Listen to Reza Aslan Interview on NPR

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?app=desktop&persist_app=1&v=-_56UYN10bA

  • 0
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    History Of Christianity In Sri Lanka is comparetively brief!

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    [Edited out]

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    Thanks; it’s a nice read.
    Not many comments; that means folks read it with interest and the rabble could not find any reason to hurl the usual abuse!

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    Some Buddhist monks and nationalists are preaching an exclusive Buddhist-Sinhalese history that ends in intimidation, verbal abuse and violence against minorities. ……… Patriotism should encourage living in harmony” (The Sunday Times, March 17, 2013).

    YOU ARE DISHONEST IN YOUR WRITINGS AND LACKS INTEGRITY. You don’t given any examples of these intimidations, verbal abuse and violence. most probably, you are talking about the present situation. MOST PROBABLY, you are man who have read a lot. you know how missionaries converted other societies and how disgusting they were. Do you understand the word “missionary position”, and how that word came into life, how thousands of people were killed and abused in the world. Do you know how thousands of children had been sexually molested and abused during the past century in the world.

    The way I have learned from Christian Clergy that MAHANUWARA has Catholic churches because of the BUDDHIST – KINGs who gave refuge to ChristiANS RUNNING AWAY FROM ANOTHER GROUP OF CHRISTIANS. There are many other examples. But, you don’t mention anything here.

    you don’t talk about the importance of Buddhist civilization to SINHALA – BUDDHIST PEOPLE.

    You are talking big time about Jesuit priests and their plantings of crosses all over the Indian sub continent.

    You know how the MADU CHURCH came into life. It is Portugeuse missionaries built a Catholic Church on the foundation of the PATHTHINI DEVALE and established a catholic female saint there.

    AFTER ALL, YOU ARE NOT A RURAL SINHALA BUDDHIST. YOU ARE A PINTO WHICH MEANS PORTUGUESE. SO, YOU DON’T KNOW ABOUT SRI LANKA OR YOU DON’T HAVE ANY ALLEGIANCE TO SRI LANKAN – sinhala buddhist civilization.

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    I know in my neighbour hood, Church converted one girl from a poor family promising her everything. Yet, they did not give her anything. Their family was very upset.

    That is also part of Brief history christianity in Sri Lanka.

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      Softy, don’t you think that you shall have to write these same things about Buddhism and Buddhist monks after a decade !!?

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    Now every thing is coming out.

    IF you check out For many things happening in Sri Lanka for Sri Lanka, Civil – Christian Organizations are behind.

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    IT is the LATE Pope John Paul Who said that ASIA to be THE NEW BATTLE GROUND IN THE NEW MILLENNIUM. now, i understand what he said.

  • 0
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    Good God! another bloody history of our blessed island. So much about yesterday when all our efforts should be about repairing the present and building a country of justice, tolerance, dignity, inclusion and sharing of the wonderful resources our small island has been blessed with. Is it too much to ask for?

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    Many Churches were Temples to Hindu cult Godesses (& the Hindu population of SL would have been far bigger then).

    We have not been much better, many temples were prehistoric, prebuddhist (prehindu) shrines.
    Abayagiri built on a destroyed Jain Temple, Jetavanarama on another Buddhist Temple (different faction), SL Theravada on Mahayana/Vajrayana.

    THOSE ‘BUDDIST KINGS’ WERE SOUTH INDIAN NAYAKAR HINDOOS.

    SINHALA & BUDDHISM ARE ALSO IMPORTED, AT THE COST OF INDIGENOUS.

    Kill the Veddha, Rob the Buddha, Blame the Suddha !!

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      Jim Bean or Mr. Bean.

      Jainism is a contemporary religion to Buddhism.

      Buddhism that exists today in Sri Lanka began in Anuradhapura. SO, if you say, that there was a Jain Temple at that time, you cannot just bark loud and finish it.

      You have to give evidence to prove it.

      “http://www.youtube.com/watch?app=desktop&persist_app=1&v=-_56UYN10bA”

      Listen to that BBC story that Jesus was a former buddhist monk.

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        http://www.sundayobserver.lk/2005/10/16/fea14.html

        EVIDENCE IS NO USE WHEN YOU HAVE DUNG IN THE HEAD.

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          Jim Bean aka Mr. Bean:

          Still it is not many.

          Many Hindu Temples and Many christian Churches, some Muslim what ever they are former Buddhist or Hindu worship places.

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            Buddhism came after Hinduism.

            Ancient systems of woship were not based on buildings.

            (even pre Asokan Buddhism, early Hinduism)

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    Many Churches were Temples to Hindu cult Godesses (& the Hindu population of SL would have been far bigger then).

    We have not been much better, many temles were prehistoric, prebuddhist (prehindu) shrines.
    Abayagiri built on a destroyed Jain Temple, Jetavanarama on another Buddhist Temple (different faction), SL Theravada on Mahayana/Vajrayana.

    THOSE ‘BUDDIST KINGS’ WERE SOUTH INDIAN NAYAKAR HINDOOS.

    SINHALA & BUDDHISM ARE ALSO IMPORTED, AT THE COST OF INDIGENOUS.

    Kill the Veddha, Rob the Buddha, Blame the Suddha !!

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      JIM Bean or Mr Mr. Bean:

      It is you shows the Racism.

      Sinhala buddhists accepted south Indian kings as their kings because they followed buddhist principals.

      It is you see as something negative.

      Lenards says that when Portuguese were massacring Sinhala people there were no human rights. In other words, when Europenas were Barbarians, Asians had advanced cultures. Portugeuse were throwing Piglets to fire and ate. They were throwing young calves stomach full of mother fed milk and threw them to the fire because they wanted to eat half digested milk curd.

      Sri Lankan kings had even animal rights 2500 years before.

      LENARD is talking about WESTERN HUMAN RIGHTS AND NOT THE ADVANCED HUMAN COMPASSION OF ASIANS WHICH EXISTED EVEN 2500 YEARS AGO. WESTERN OR CHRISTIAN HUMAN RIGHTS ARE ONLY FOR HUMANS WHO SUPPORTS THEIR AGENDA.

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        NO FOREIGNER EVER MANAGED TO COMPLETELY IMPLANT IMPORTED CONCEPTS IN TO SL THAN THE SINHALESE (& TAMILS).

        NATIVES LOST THEIR LAND TO US LONG BEFORE ANY FOREIGNER AND HIS JIMS, COMPUTERS, JEALOUSY’S STARTED TO SPEAK.

        WHAT YOU FELLOWS HAVE IS A ‘RACIST-EXCUSE’.

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    IF NOT FOR THESE CHRISTIANS THE WHOLE OF MOTHER INDIA WILL BE MUSLIM.

    ONLY PARTS OF KERALA & ‘our hated’ TAMIL-NADU REMAINED HINDU.
    SOUTH-EAST ASIA WAS ALSO CONVERTED TO MUSLIM AND ONLY A MATTER OF TIME BEFOFRE WE TOO (remember Buddhist conversion, Vijey invasion, Hindu conversion)

    THE QUESTION IS DO WE PREFER BEING MUSLIM (SUBJECTS) INSTEAD AND HAVING A LARGER HINDU POPULATION ??

    So, learn to appreciate that ‘Christian’
    If not no Jim or your opinion, shirt & tie, computer or car…..,
    Do we really need to take you seriously !!

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    In essence what this man Pinto written is a bias crap. It is obvious that Pinto’s aim is to ridicule our Great chronicle and thereby undermine our true heritage.

    If Muhammad Al-Idrisi had visited Sri Lanka as Pinto says, and found four out of 16 advisers of the king were Christians, should not Idrisi give the year of his visit and the name of the King at the time. Another point; if at all there were Christian advisers should they not have build Churches and other monuments taking a leaf from the Hindus before them. But we see none of it. Same goes for Pinto’s Murundi Christian soldiers adventures here as well. I am not suggesting for a moment that there had never been visitors but all we say is there never was any Christian tribes that had there own culture who had not assimilated with the major culture. All we see is a single cross found in Anuradhapura. And Pinto thinks in the line that one sparrow makes a summer.

    Before I forget, let me explain a bit of ‘Some Christian Contributions in Sri Lanka’ not in Archbishop Gomis’ words but in the words of an eminent professor and a historian Tennakoon Wimalananda. In his book, ‘Buddhism in Ceylon under the Christian powers’ Wimalananda clearly points out that all colonial governments in Sri Lanka had promoted apostasy. So much for Pinto’s talk “Church law forbids forced conversion to Catholicism, then as it is now.”

    It all started like this. There was a Franciscan priest with the Portuguese pirates that were washed up to the shores of Sri Lanka. All Christians agree that the first Holy Mass in Sri Lanka was celebrated and held by that priest aboard that pirate ship. So, it is the background of that Christian priest and his clan that is important to us at this point. In short, he was a Franciscan priest. The Web site ‘www.sspxasia.com’ confirms these facts.

    Now Franciscan priests and their missionaries steadfastly believed; those who die as Catholics would go straight to heaven and all others to hell. They were happy to get anyone killed if they though the victim would pray to their God at least at his last breath. Franciscan devotion to God was so much; in 1776 at the Council of Lérida, Pope Pius vi had put Franciscans together with Dominicans in charge of killings called inquisitions on heresy. A Cambridge scholar Edward Burman paints a terrifying but compelling picture of ‘Inquisition’.

    Getting back to Professor Wimalananda’s afore mentioned book, it shows how Christian education was uplifted with lavish subsides while Buddhist Pirivena monasteries were deprived of it with ample statistics. It also explains the manner that Catholic and other evangelists coerce the British rulers to withdraw all subsidies due to Buddhist monasteries under submission agreement with the sole aim of ruining Sinhale culture.

    Pinto talks greatly about the Portuguese. To cover up their crimes, Pinto says, there was no international Human Rights Law or International Humanitarian Law at the time. What a cheek, Pinto should read Tripitake to learn not just ‘human rights’ but why we should honor ‘animal rights’ as well.

    Pinto try to whitewash Portuguese as another colonial who Sinhala kings failed to manage to their benefit. In his book ‘Portuguese in Ceylon’, Sir James Emerson Tennent had written aptly about Portuguese sojourn in Sri Lanka. Tennent says in short; “there is no page in the story of European colonization more gloomy and repulsive than that which recounts the proceedings of the Portuguese in Ceylon.”

    So, from the day that the said Franciscan washed up to our shores, Catholic Padres assisted the murderous Portuguese to raid and rob the wealth our nation for almost two centuries. In the midst of such horrific plunder, Portuguese stole the ivory crown of our king. They, knocked down the beautiful ‘Kelaniya Temple’ that stood for more than millennia.

    In the name of the One God, Catholic missionaries watched gleefully the torture, the killing and maiming of those that refused to forsake Buddhism. And Pinto says “Church law forbids forced conversion to Catholicism, then as it is now.” Pinto should know that missionaries expected those that were being killed to plead the God at least at their last minute. Their pursuit was to save souls of everyone. Just like their brethren, who administered killings by inquisition.

    Franciscans missionary maniacs believed that those who die as Catholics would go to heaven and all others to eternal hell. Even killings are acceptable so long as souls can be sent to be with the God. Perhaps I must mention here that it is the postulation against this belief that Vatican excommunicated Father Tissa Balasuriya at one time. That deeply rooted opinion of Catholics go to heaven and all others to eternally burning hell indeed prevail as a church dogma even today. However hard Balasuriyas try, the church system of belief will stay put. Vatican knows only too well that to correct one error means thousand more blunders would be sure to pop up.

    Let me now quote Fr. Duchaussois, Sous les feux de Ceylan, Paris, 1929, p.66 which says; “… They (The Dutch) managed to save Buddhism which was dying away, thanks to the work of the Catholic Portuguese missionaries.” And how that Catholic padre accused the Dutch; “… Dutch authorities offered to the King of Kandy their own ships to go to Siam (Thailand) and fetch 12 young and zealous Buddhist monks, able to restore the worship of Buddha.” Anyone can now imagine the vengeance Catholic padres must have had with the Dutch for not being able to vanquish Buddhism in to oblivion. Does their attitude have changed a bit since? No. Pinto is the best example.

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      Patriot Leela,
      Which part of the above article undermines or ridicules the Great chronicle and true heritage.

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      Patriot,

      Thanks for the alternate viewpoint.

      Of course, the Catholics will want to white wash and misrepresent facts, so that the Pope and their gang can maintain their Hegemony. So nobody, yes nobody, had ended up in Hell or Heaven. What a farce.

      Read.

      The Roman Inquisition found him guilty of heresy and he was burned at the stake.[3]

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Giordano_Bruno

      Martin Luther (German: [ˈmaɐ̯tiːn ˈlʊtɐ] ( listen); 10 November 1483 – 18 February 1546) was a German monk, Catholic priest, professor of theology and seminal figure of a reform movement in 16th century Christianity, subsequently known as the Protestant Reformation.[1] He strongly disputed the claim that freedom from God’s punishment for sin could be purchased with money. He confronted indulgence salesman Johann Tetzel, a Dominican friar, with his Ninety-Five Theses in 1517. His refusal to retract all of his writings at the demand of Pope Leo X in 1520 and the Holy Roman Emperor Charles V at the Diet of Worms in 1521 resulted in his excommunication by the Pope and condemnation as an outlaw by the Emperor.

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Martin_Luther

      There is speculation that Matin Luther went to Heaven for his Good Works.

      Does the Sun go around a stationary Earth, or the Earth around a stationary Sun? What dies the data and credible information say?

      “So, from the day that the said Franciscan washed up to our shores, Catholic Padres assisted the murderous Portuguese to raid and rob the wealth our nation for almost two centuries. In the midst of such horrific plunder, Portuguese stole the ivory crown of our king. They, knocked down the beautiful ‘Kelaniya Temple’ that stood for more than millennia.”

      In the 16th and 17th Centuries , that was the standard practice. The Pope, divided the World between the Spanish and the Portuguese. Between the Spanish and the Portuguese, they created hell on Earth for the inhabitants. Killing non-Catholics not converting to Christianity was standard practice. In Sri Lanka, the Muslims, named Moors by the Portuguese were killed or chased out from the maritime provinces.

      Thank Sir Francis Drake and Holland for defeating the Spanish and Portuguese, and making trade, more than religion the primary goal, and saved Buddhism, Hinduism and Islam in Sri Lanka, and avoided the fate of Cuba or Philippines.

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      If true, Tennent is mistaken.
      SL cannot be compared to the Americas where the natives are almost extinct due to Catholics.

      On the other hand Sinhala & Buddhism (Tamil & Hinduism) are responsible for the near extinction of our natives.

      The Kandyan kingdom cannot be both winning the war against Portuguese and loosing their religion.!!
      Unless it is due to Hindu/South Indian (Sinhala Buddhist) kings & the Kandyan population.

      The Dutch (empire) comitted atrocities in South East Asia, South Africa (up until recently). They were once Catholic subjects (Spanish empire) and hated Catholics. These Dutch & British also nearly wiped out the natives of north America.

      Whilst the British and Dutch influence remain acceped and liked by many (even the hating pretenders) in SL, the Portuguese influence remain dear to us even after 500 years, as the Potuguese though religious biggots, were not so racist like the others and our kings embraced them, their religion and culture.

      It does not make too much sense to talk of outside attrocities when we have not performed better and the so called ‘our’ culture is primarily Indian.
      Actually, it is this (‘foreign’) Portuguese influence that makes us distinct in south Asia more so than (‘foreign’) Buddhism.
      (rather common in the region; Bhutan, Nepal..)

      At the end of the day we are impressed by what is foreign; be it Sinhala, Tamil, Buddhism, Christianity, Aryan and a whole lot more.
      Our roots are foreign.

      These ‘haters’ have been made to feel uncomfortable and that is what they do not see in their verbal-gerbal.
      It is pointless and not their burden !!

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    This is an excellent contribution. It is interesting to note that Queen Sangha, the mother of King Dhatusena, invited Christian soldiers from Murundi to guard King Dhatusena. What is important is that this article further establishes the fact that all races and religions in Sri Lanka have contributed to establish a multi-racial & multi-religious society in Sri Lanka.

    I am happy to see that the editorial staff of Colombo Telegraph supports the promotion of Sri Lanka as a multi-lingual & multi-religious country enjoying all the Human Rights enshrined in our constitution. If we move in the opposite direction, Sri Lanka is doomed!

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    Dr Pinto’s article is titled, “A brief history of Christianity in Sri Lanka”. So, he is free to write within the scope of that topic. His topic is not Buddhist or Sinhalese or Tamil history. He does not undermine the Buddhist history, Sinhalese history or the works of scholarly monks. He presents facts from history as they are within his topic. Nobody condones war crimes, whether they come from the Portuguese, LTTE or Sri Lankan Forces.

    Patriot and Jim Softy are good examples of typical Buddhist-Sinhalese extremist, whose reason is drowned in emotions. There are many such individual’s in Sri Lanka, who claim that they have a culture of 2500 years, but demonstrate none of that in their attitudes, writings and actions. Sinhalese websites are full of that uncivilised and sometimes vulgar stuff. To be caught up in 500-year old events, when the global paradigm shift had occurred significantly in modern times, is a demonstration of that uncultured attitude and behaviour. To think that Sri Lanka belongs only to the Buddhist-Sinhalese and others have no right to their history is a gross violation of the Rights of Minorities.

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      christianity is vanished from it’s strong hold europe, domination of the Asia is the next best Christian’ objective. Europe started to lose it’s Christian base around 1700s.

      So fight for it.

      It is good to know even the North america has so many agnostics and atheists.

      Buddhism will survive for 5000 years before it vanishes. Can the christianity survive that long ?

      Anyway after 5000 years only suitable religion for the world will be fundamentalist – Islam. Because humans will be like animals.

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      Sri Lankan.

      “To think that Sri Lanka belongs only to the Buddhist-Sinhalese and others have no right to their history is a gross violation of the Rights of Minorities.”

      Sri Lanka Belonged to the Vedda and other natives. They were Animist, Hindu and Jain, before the introduction of Buddhism. The Pali Canon was written only around 80 BC in Aluvihare Temple, Sri Lanka because there was a fear the beliefs are being corrupted, in Pali, written in the Sinhala Script. That was the beginning of the Sinhala-Buddhist Monk Hegemony.

      Was there Nibbana or Nirvanna for people before and after Buddhism? No, because it is all myths, no support, as it is system for Monk Hegemony.

      Ask why there are no Tamil Buddhists? Don’t they deserve Nibbana?

      Well, the Sinhala Buddhist Racism was codified by Monk Mahanama in the 6th Century CE, Six centuries after Alivihare Temple’s Pali Cannon to maintain Monk Hegemony.

      The 1958 and 1983 riots is supporting evidence for that.

      Look, Sri Lanka is 70% Buddhist is more violent than Bali, Indonesia with 94% Hindus.

      Ask Why?

      Are the Buddha’s teachings? Are the Sinhalese Buddhists of Sri Lanka following Buddhism? Or is it Racism and Mara-ism? At this rate they will drive even the Buddhists to the other religions or make then Atheists and free themselves from the Monk Hegemony.

      Live Free or Die, says the American State of New Hampshire.

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Live_Free_or_Die

      “Live Free or Die” is the official motto of the U.S. state of New Hampshire, adopted by the state in 1945.[1] It is possibly the best-known of all state mottos, partly because it speaks to an assertive independence historically found in American political philosophy and partly because of its contrast to the milder sentiments found in other state mottos

      The 1958 and 1983 riots is supporting evidence for that.
      Is Buddhism the curse of Lanka? Is it the Jewel of Lanka?

      Just like the Al-Queda has distorted Islam, the Buddhist extremists are distorting the Buddha Dhamma, the Buddhs’s Teachings.

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      A Sri Lankan, I agree with you. When history is recounted with available evidence those who disagree must do so with counter evidence. If not, it is mere emotional response and does not help to arrive at the truth. Blaming other religions is pointless and displays only the hatred and bigotry of the commentator. One cannot form an opinion on such responses. We should be ready to accept the truth, for after all it is what it is, regardless of what we like it to be. Sri Lankan history is replete with patricide, matricide,fratricide, jealousy, envy and unbridled ambition. Whilst these historical accounts are shameful to behold they cannot be excused on the ground that it was so all over the world. What it showed was that the wondrous non violent Buddhism did not have true influence then. Nor does it have influence in the present day to effectively change our violent society. So instead of criticising other religions and races, let us look at how we can make true Buddhist values effective for the good of society. Fr.Pintos article gives a Christian history. All we must glean is what it was like at the time. Naturally he may have bias, but if historical facts are true, then there is much we can learn.

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    Christians say Thomas the Apostle has visited Muziris in Kerala in 52 AD to spread the gospel amongst Kerala’s Jewish settlements. One story goes as St. Thomas was brought to Kerala, south India in 52 AD by a merchant to build a temple. They also say he has succeeded in converting local Indians to Christianity. And his converts were called Syrian Christians. However proof for Christian origins in India too remain unclear for there are no Chronicles or historical records or any monuments to support their case in history even in Goa.

    Write or wrong let’s see whether anyone can come up with better proof like Albert Schweitzer who in 1906 published a book named “The Quest of the Historical Jesus” after much research where he claimed in page 398 that “The Jesus of Nazareth who came forward as the Messiah, who preached the ethic of the Kingdom of God, who founded the Kingdom of Heaven upon earth, and died to give his work its final consecration, never had any existence.”

    We all know Vasco DaGama arrived in south India in 1498 after circling the whole continent of Africa. Just like in Sri Lanka, on the order of Pope, Dominican and Franciscan even tried to enforced their Roman Catholic prayers on the afore said Syrian Christians so much for Pinto’s talk of “Church law forbids forced conversion to Catholicism, then as it is now.”

    After many wars the Portuguese were defeated by local rulers and they had only one big pocket of control in India, Goa. With all that only about 2.5% of India’s population or 30 million are Christians.

    If that is the case about Christianity in India, do we have to talk about Christianity before Portuguese in Sri Lanka. This Murundi Christian soldiers and their adventures are just a figment of imagination for fancy by Pinto.

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      Further information on the Nestorian Church in India & Saint Thomas Christians in India are given in the following links.

      Nestorian Church in India
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Church_of_the_East#India

      Saint Thomas Christians in India
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saint_Thomas_Christians

      The Saint Thomas Cross shown in the above link and the Anuradhapura Cross shown in this article by Leonard Pinto are similar.

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      Patriot,

      “Write or wrong let’s see whether anyone can come up with better proof like Albert Schweitzer who in 1906 published a book named “The Quest of the Historical Jesus” after much research where he claimed in page 398 that “

      Actually, according to Reza Aslan, on Historical Jesus, Zealot, there were a number of Jews who popped up to free Palestine from Roman occupation.

      http://minnesota.publicradio.org/display/web/2013/09/03/daily-circuit-reza-aslan

      According to author and religious scholar Reza Aslan, the historical Jesus was:

      • “Very likely illiterate, uneducated — as were 98 percent of his fellow Jews.”

      • “Poor, extremely poor. In fact, if we take the Bible at its word that Jesus was … a woodworker, a builder, then that would make Jesus probably at the second-lowest rung of the social hierarchy in his time, just above the indigent, the beggar and the slave.”

      • “He was from Galilee. Galilee was considered backwoods. It was considered the way many Americans would think of, say, Appalachia or the Deep South. The Galileans were referred to derisively as ‘people of the land.’ It was a term that suggested they were uncouth, uneducated poor, people who were subsistence farmers.”

      • “He lived in a village called Nazareth … This village was so small, so inconsequential, that its name does not appear on any map or document before the end of the first century. This is a village that probably housed maybe 100 families at most. Didn’t have any roads, didn’t have any public baths, didn’t have a synagogue or a school.”

      • “Poor, pious, illiterate, marginal, an outcast, someone that the authorities of the time would barely regard at all, or would regard as nothing more than a nuisance and a troublemaker.

      • “And yet despite all this, through the power of his charisma, through the power of his teachings, he was able to gather a movement to himself, a movement of people like him … that was seen as so threatening to the political and religious powers of his day that he was ultimately arrested, tortured and executed as a state criminal.”

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    Dear Rev Devil,

    You may be referring to a different Pinto. I can’t remember commenting sarcastically on the Holy Eucharist. Now that we are on this topic, I must say that I had issues in understanding the concept of Transubstantiation, as substance in chemistry is different from substance in philosophy, until I read “What We Can’t Not Know” by J. Budziszewski, a professor of physics. Anyway, good to talk to you.

    Leonard

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    why do we need chrisianity in the indian sub continent for. christianity is an alien faith and jesus is an alien god. when we have about 10 or more gods in hindu faith i am not inclined to add jesus to the already crowded house.

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    There were two christian kings in Kandy before Wimaladharmasuriya.

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    What ever it is JEsus was a humanitarian and once his movement went underground, Roman politicians made a political movement in order to satisfy their political needs.

    So, that created the Transnational govt of Vatican, A international business conglomerate. Their product is the Bible and the god. HUmans are naturally dumb and some times, they desperately need those products. so, the priests sell it to door to and at the Church.

    On the other hand, buddhism is for intelligent people and the people who understand the true world. Other times, It is only for intelligent people and those who finds that ALmighty can do nothing for them and almighty is just their own creation.

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    http://www.youtube.com/watch?app=desktop&persist_app=1&v=-_56UYN10bA

    Listen to a Christian Tamil who broke away all the human barriers and became worldly.

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      Jim Softy,

      “through radical organizations, such as Bodu Bala Sena, Ravana Balaya and Sinhala Ravaya. The government shows little interest in applying the laws of the country to Buddhist monks, for their political advantages. “

      Can you send BBS, Ravana Balaya and Sinhala Ravya for retraining there in Buddhism? They seem to have cut their classes and training in the Dhamaa and the Tipitaka.

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?app=desktop&persist_app=1&v=-_56UYN10bA

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        Amarasiri:

        It is reverse discrimination.

        You people Hail TNA which is a Tamil only party and Muslim Only parties.

        BBS, Sinhala or Ravana Balaya are extremist to you.

        I say Putin’s Russia should become the WOrld’s super power

        Read this:

        ““Any minority’s right to be different must be respected, but the right of the majority must not be questioned,” Putin added. “

        “If Berlusconi were gay he would never be on trial – Putin “

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    What do Europeans and we have in common ?

    BOTH CHAMPION OTHER PEOPLES RELIGIONS;
    MIDDLE EASTERN CHRISTIANITY & INDIAN BUDDHISM.

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      Traitor,

      You say:

      “What do Europeans and we have in common ?
      BOTH CHAMPION OTHER PEOPLES RELIGIONS;
      MIDDLE EASTERN CHRISTIANITY & INDIAN BUDDHISM.”

      Amarasiri says:

      What do Europeans and we have in common ?

      BOTH CHAMPION OTHER PEOPLES MYTHS;
      MIDDLE EASTERN CHRISTIANITY & INDIAN BUDDHISM MYTHS.

      There is no proof so far for:

      Nirvana, Nibbana, Samsara, Rebirth, Heaven, Hell, Limbo, Purgatory and 72 Virgins.

      It is all marketing and create fear so that the Priests, Monks, Mullahs, Ulema and other Hegemony seekers can maintain their Hegemony.

      Have your heard about Martin Luther and Karl Marx?

      What a great business model and value proposition of the hegemony seekers, selling after life insurance.

      DeJa Vu…….

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    I am happy that the discussion is getting more civilised except for JimSofty, who continues to demonstrate intellectual bandruptcy in trumpeting that Buddhists are the greatest people on earth (chosen race?) and distorting the truth of History of the Church as in other areas. These two aspects of Buddhist-Sinhalese extremists, namely condescending SUPERIORITY and covering up TRUTH with lies, cheating, dishonesty and mistrust are the main causes of ethical degradation of the Sri Lankan society. This is another topic on which several books can be written.

    Now to Patriot’s question on the documentation on St. Thomas’ presence in India and Sri Lanka. I refer the Patriot to Historica Ecclesiastica written by Nikephoros Kallistos Xanthopulous from Hagia Sophia (Constantinople- present Turkey) to Emperor Andronikos II in 18 volumes covering the history of the Church during the first 610 years. (Refer Vol 2, pg 40).

    As for Albert Schweitzer’s “The Quest of the Historical Jesus”(1906), let me say that his book ends the first period of quest for historical Jesus using analytical techniques. What was discussed was historical Jesus and Jesus of Faith. Now we are in the third period of quest for historical Jesus, using more rigorous techniques for analysing history that include the use of criteria of dissimilarity, embarrasment, plausibility and congruency. I recommend that Patriot read “A Marginal Jew: Rethinking the historical Jesus in 5 Volumes (Vol 1. Roots of the problem, Vol 2. Roots of the person, Vol 3. Public Ministry, Vol 4. Crucifixion and burial, Vol 5. Epilogue) by J.P. Meier in 1990s. Patriots quotation of Schweitzer appears to say that Jesus is not a historic figure. This is wrong. There is widespread scholarly agreement on the existence of Jesus as a historical figure, but how he is portrayed is what varied in the three quests. By the way, the history of Sri Lanka or the teachings of Buddha have not been critically analysed to the extent that Christian history and the teachings of Jesus have been subjected to. Using some of those analytical methods, an American Professor, Walter concluded that Mahawansa was written during the Dambadeniya period.

    Now about the “Churh law forbids force conversion…” This is the law of the Church as moral theology teaches. Preaching, advising, inspiring and inducing cannot be considered as forced conversion. There is no evidence to show that missionaries held a sword and converted people. This is the disinformation disseminated by the Buddhist-Sinhalese extremists. King Bhuvenekabahu VII of Kotte remained a good Buddhist while he remained a good friend of the Portuguese and their king in Lisbon. Before baptism persons or God parents are asked whether they wish to be baptised on their own accord. Having said that I don’t deny the possibility of missionaries acting overzealously, but that does not undermine the laws of the Church, as much as dabbling of Buddhist monks in power, politics, wealth, rape (e.g. UK, Perth) and thuggery (e.g. invading privte properties of churches assaulting, breaking & burning) does not undermine the noble philosophy of Lord Buddha.

    On Rama’s question: According to their constitution, India is a secular State and Sri Lanka is a Buddhist State. That shows the tolerance of Indian intellectuals. Although Rama does not need Christianity, there are many peope in India, including a Minister who are Christians. They have a right to believe and practice what they believe. After all, there are many Indians and Sri Lankans in USA, UK, Europe and Australia and they are allowed to practice their religion freely and openly. These western countries do not say, we don’t want your Hindu gods who behave like humans.

    With regard to Kamal’s query, yes there were three Christian kings before king Wimaladharmasuriya, namely Jayaweera Bandara, Karaliyadde Bandara and Yamasinghe. But, I want to respect the Buddhist-Sinhalese history, which recognise king Wimaladharmasuriya (baptised as John of Austria) as the first king of the Kandyan (Senkadagala) kingdom.

    Leonard

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      Lenard:

      You have inferiority complex in what you are talking.

      I am more or less a Chrisitan I say.

      According to true buddhism, I have to respect other religions.

      But, It is christians who believe that their FAITH is the only TRUE faith. See how your same-blood cousin – ISLAM – says. They think Allah is the only true Almighty. In that sense I am Christian Because I Say buddhism is the Only Truth.

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      Lenard:

      Tell me what is uncivilized here ?

      OR you were scared for some thing ?

      For me, history of the Christianity in the world is over 38000 denominations, So many Crusades and some of those crusades instigated by the POPE, So many massacres, killings and suffering to people.

      All because of a few individuals – MOSES and JESUS – who tried to help their people to escape from the oppressing dictators.

      So, you all are looking for that land ?

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        Jim Softly, You must please dispense with “us against them” mentality. If you do that your commentaries will elicit serious counter comments. Otherwise, it will be merely purposeless invective. Can you change?

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    Leonard,
    I am wondering whether you get my point: I wanted to point out that many a people who write rumours and gossip and lies as truth these days. In my opinion, Dr Pinto is of no different. For that reason, we cannot let such people cover-up the truth or whitewash nasty things that Portuguese did to our ancestor or evil they have bequeathed us as good omen. It is to expose the misleading stories and yarn that Pinto presented as facts in his essay that I have quoted a bit of scholarly writings.

    Now to answer your response, I must say that Konappu Bandara may have become Dom Joan of Austria. However, what is important is that he has renounced Christianity, embraced Buddhism and become King Wimaladharmasuriya and then married Princess Kusmasana Devi who too has renounced her Dona Catherina character. Thereafter, King Vimaladharmasuriya constructed a shrine to accommodate Buddha’s Tooth close to his palace. So, to name Vimaladharmasuriya as a Christian king is absurd. Although Portuguese tried their best to convert Jayaweera Bandara, King of Kandy before Vimaladharmasuriya to Christianity, he has never become a Christian. His grandson Karaliyadde Bandara however may have been a Christian for he needed Portuguese support to remain as king or may have become a Christian when chased away into Portuguese exile by Rajasingha 1.

    Such is true history and not like the history we are told about the ‘Jesus’ of Nazareth. Since you wrote about it, I must say that after reading a fair bit about Jesus of Nazareth, a number of factors aligned myself with opinions by Albert Schweitzer and the likes. First is that Christians know almost nothing about Jesus pubescent. After narrating a great deal about his babyhood and one other of teenage Jesus, the New Testament jumps directly to the three years of preaching of the matured Jesus up to his crucifixion. Only four lines is there in Luke 2:51-52 about the Jesus’ youth. And that is incredible. Rev. W.L. Don Peter Appuhamy in ‘Current Comments’ 1965 says, evangelists’ concern had been to spread Jesus’ messianic mission and not of his youth. But such answers give more suspicion to historicity of Jesus.

    Next, Jesus’ so-called last events such as; he being arrested, tried, crucified and taken to heaven were all happened within just few days. Events during such a short spell and decisive ones at that should be accounted in unison. But, Gospel is clearly inconsistent about them. Matthew 27:28 says; the colour of robe that was placed on Jesus during his trial is scarlet, but John 19:2 says; it is purple. On his way to be crucified, Matthew 27:34 says; Jesus was given vinegar to drink, but Mark 15:23 say; it is wine with myrrh. Not just that read what Mathew, Luke and John say about what Jesus said while fixed on to the cross:

    Matt.27:46, 50 say; “And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, “Eli, eli, lama sabachthani?” that is to say, “My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me? … Jesus, when he cried again with a loud voice, yielded up the ghost.” But, Luke 23:46 say a different story, “And when Jesus had cried with a loud voice, he said, “Father, unto thy hands I commend my spirit:” and having said thus, he gave up the ghost.” And, John 19:30 say yet another story altogether, “When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, he said, “It is finished:” and he bowed his head, and gave up the ghost.” As we understand, there are three meanings in these three stories, and which one you would accept. Clearly, Jesus (Son) was forsaken by (Father) Lord God at the last minute.

    Perhaps we should looks for analysis by historians at that time. Famous Jewish historian called Flavius Josephus (A.D. 38-100+) wrote about three characters that people thought were messiahs crucified by the Romans in his ‘Jewish Antiquities’. He named them as Yehuda of Galilee (6 CE), Theudas (44 CE), and Benjamin the Egyptian (60 CE). If we are to believe what Josephus says is correct, it is possible to conclude that the ‘Jesus story’ that we know of is partly based on the lives of those said crucified.

    Now read this; in December, 1945 there discovered in Upper Egypt a group of 52 Gnostic scrolls that dated from about 148 A.D. First of those scrolls tell us about the conflicting doctrines and the uncertainty in early Christianity. In 1947, more ancient scrolls were discovered in the caves of Qumran on the shore of the Dead Sea about 15 miles from Jerusalem. These scrolls are known as “the Dead Sea Scrolls.” However, the impression given to the public was that there were only a few scrolls found, just as those found in the first caves. Some of those scrolls are said to be a hundred years older than Jesus of Nazareth is said to have lived. But, they are said to contain almost every myth you find in the New Testament including “the sermon on the Mount”. In his ‘Jewish Antiquities’, Josephus wrote only of those that were crucified by the Romans a century before Jesus is said to have lived. And the said Dead Sea scrolls are also over a hundred years older than Jesus of Nazareth is said to have lived. If that is so, How could the narration in Gospel what Jesus is said to have said be similar to those written centuries earlier?

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    Patriot says “many people write rumours and gossip and lies as truth these days” and I agree. But, I regret that I am classified as one of them by the Patriot. I have given references to support what I was saying, but the Patriot simply condemns them with no supporitng evidence, but only with his authority. It seems to me that suppression, twisting and padding truth is the state of affairs in Sri Lanka, as 80 journalists have already left the country saying that they fear to write what they perceive as truth. The international community sees this clearly more than the Sri Lankans, who are perhaps brainwashed by a false sense of nationalism. Just to give a simple exmple the death of the LTTE leader came in 2 versions in two days. UTHRJ came with a totally different version. Who is saying the truth? Only those who say it know. The Patriot dictates with absolute authority that what he says is the truth and all others are wrong, a typical agent of the Buddhist-Sinhalese propaganda. They say, Sri Lanka belongs only to the Buddhist-Sinhalese, and others can live as second class citizens. Attacks on Christians, associating them with the Portuguese and concentrating on Portuguese atrocities seem to be a strategy of the Buddhist-Sinhalese extremists to justify that agenda.

    Now, about the religion of the kings. I was stating facts as they were, and I don’t care whether they were Buddhists, Christians, Hindus or Muslims. One thing is clear, that members of royal families and nobility changed their religion for benefit or security, as much as present day MPs in Sri Lanka change their parties, as if they have no political principles or party policies. Today, we live in an era when white America has a black president, and religion and race are forbidden on CVs in developed world. It is only the so-called patriots who are worried about race and religon, as Hitler was obsessed with Aryan Nazism.

    Another strategy of the Buddhist-Sinhalese agenda is to discredit the beliefs of Christians. Jesus of Nazareth is the first target. They use anti-Christian literature from western writers for this purpose. The fact that historical Jesus of Nazareth existed is beyond doubt, as contemporary Roman and Jewish documents confirm.

    Since some sceptics say that Gospels are not historical documents, it is best to start with non-Christian documents. Among the Romans, one who has provided evidence about Jesus is Thallus, a Samaritan Roman born in AD 52. He refers to the darkness at the crucifixion of Jesus (similar to Mark 15:33), but attributes it to a solar eclipse. Julius Africanus referring to the text in the 2nd century says that solar eclipse was not possible around a full moon, on Jewish Passover when Jesus was crucified. Cornelius Tacitus, another Roman born in AD 52-54 refers to Jesus as Christus, who suffered the extreme penalty during the reign of Tiberius, at the hands of one of our procurators, Pontius Pilate.

    Among the Jewish writings, Talmud a book of codes, started in AD 70 refers to Jeshu’a of Nazareth, though rejecting him as the Messiah, as any Jewish document would do. The best non-Christian account of Jesus comes from a Jewish General turned historian Flavius Josephus (AD 37-101). Our Patriot misquotes him as he did with Albert Schweitzer. In Book XVIII, chapter 3 of Jewish Antiquities Flavius states,
    “About this time lived Jesus, a man full of wisdom, if indeed one may call Him man. For he was the doer of incredible things and the teacher of gladly received truth. He thus attracted to himself many Jews and gentiles. He was the Christ. On the accusation of the leading men of our people, Pilate condemned Him to death upon the cross. Nevertheless those who had previously loved him still remained faithful to him. He appeared to them on the third day alive again, as prophets had predicted, and said many other wonderful things about Him. And to the present day, the race of those who call themselves Christians after Him has not ceased”.

    Among the Christian writings, the four Gospels speak amply of the life and works of Jesus of Nazareth and his super-natural mission. The Patriot brings that old story of four Gospels being inconsistent. Wrong. It is the same story with different emphasis as when different journalists write the same account in different newspapers. Here it is not just one event, but many, the occurrences of 3 years. The 3 synoptic Gospels of Mark, Luke and Matthew narrate the life of Jesus, while John flies high with spiritual themes from the life of Jesus, for which reason he is symbolized as an eagle. Mark, a disciple of Jesus and a close associate of Peter, Paul and Barnabas was the first to write his Gospel in AD 40 – 70. Luke a physician, artist and an associate of Paul, Mary and other disciples wrote his Gospel between AD 66 and 73 AD in elegant Greek. Matthew the tax collector for Romans, who became a disciple of Jesus also wrote his Gospel in Greek, emphasizing theological aspects of the teachings of Jesus, somewhere in AD 70.
    76% of Mark’s Gospel is common with 41% of Matthew and 45% of Luke, and hence known as Triple tradition. Gospels of Matthew and Luke may have been built on Mark, but contain more information than Mark. About 35 % of Matthew is unique to this Gospel and 20% of Luke is unique to it. About 23% of Matthew and 25% of Luke overlap with each other, and known as the Double tradition.

    Gospels contain the records of eyewitnesses or their associates and are therefore accurate record of activities of Jesus, though in details they may differ. Luke being a trained historian, physician and an artist with sharp observational skills, attempts to present facts in a chronological order of events as he states at the beginning of his Gospel thus, “ I have carefully studied all these matters from their beginning. I thought it would be good to write an orderly account for you. I do this so that you will know the full truth about every thing which you have been taught” (Lk. 1:3-4). Mark and Matthew had a Jewish background, expecting the Messiah from the writings of the Old Testament. Hence they quote the Old Testament frequently in their Gospels. There were many other accounts written on the life of Jesus, particularly by gnostic monks in the first few centuries, but were rejected by the scholarly Fathers of the early Church, as their accounts were not consistent. The input of such a monk to Quran which was written between 610 and 634 is clear from the recognition of Jesus and Mary in Holy Quran.

    Now about Qumran, which I visited in 2011 and the Dead Sea Scrolls. The Dead Sea Scrolls are a collection of 972 texts discovered between 1946 and 1956 at Qumran. Fr. R.de Vaux and a team of French archaeologists excavated the area from 1951 to 1956, after the initial discovery of 7 scrolls by Bedouin shepherds in 1947. Some of the scrolls contained Isaiah, Habakkuk Commentary, Community Rule, Temple Scroll etc. They confirmed Isaiah, Habakkuk etc. in the Bible. Qumran is associaated with Essenes, a break away sect, from Jerusalem. Essenes arrived in Qumran in the 2nd century BC and they left the site in 68 AD when Romans conquered Qumran. The Essenes were ascetics, and paid great attention to ritual bathing and purity. They lived a communal life in a settlement that was constructed to make them as self-reliant as possible. They had assembly halls, a central dining room in which ceremonial meals were eaten and ritual baths. A documentary shown at the location by the Israel Nature and Parks Authority clearly stated that there was no evidence to indicate that Jesus lived there, although John the Baptist may have spent a couple of years there. Our patriot likes to insult Christians calling the sermon on the Mount a myth and tries to make a story from various theories on Dead Sea Scrols floating in the air. One thing was clear to me during my visit to Qumran. While the Essenes emphasised purifications, Jesus was against external purifications (Matt 23:25-27).

    Now that we are talking about the original texts of Christianity, it is interesting to note that Buddhist texts have more difficult issues. What was preached by Buddha and what was added by monks, from Hindu and other influences is not known (e.g. rebirth is common to Hinduism and Buddhism, but not to Judaism, Christianity and Islam). On Sri Lankan history, we all know that Mahavihara monks wrote negatively about kings who were favourable towards Abhayagiri vihara. So, where is the Truth?

    Leonard

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      Lenard:

      If you want to understand buddhism as it is you need to understand Quantum Dynamics, at least the basics.

      Otherwise, you mix rebirth, athma and anathama and make a mess.

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      Lenard:

      Some where in your responses, you say “another Buddhists” agenda is discrediting Christians

      The following is by a former Christian. Can you defend this ?


      Christianity Myth #1:

      God is omnipotent, everything occurs according to His divine will.

      In the Bible, we find many passages which are often interpreted to mean that everything in an individual’s life – prosperity and decline, happiness and misery, salvation and damnation, as well the rise and fall of nations – comes to pass exactly as predestined by God. For example, St. Paul wrote:

      Those whom He predestined He also called; and those whom He called He also justified; and those whom He justified He also glorified. -Rom. 8:30RS|KJ|NI

      “I will have mercy on whom I have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I have compassion.” So it depends not upon man’s will or exertion, but upon God’s mercy. -Rom. 9:15-16RS|KJ|NI

      Has the potter no right over the clay, to make out of the same lump one vessel for beauty and another for menial use? -Rom. 9:21RS|KJ|NI

      It is also written that, even while they were still in their mother’s womb, God loved Jacob and hated Esau and announced their destiny, saying, “the elder will serve the younger.”1(Rom. 9:11-13)RS|KJ|NIThus, there are ample biblical grounds to justify the doctrine of God’s absolute and complete predestination.

      Yet we can also find sufficient evidence in the Bible to refute the doctrine of absolute predestination. For example, God warned the first human ancestors not to eat of the fruit in order to prevent their Fall.2(Gen. 2:17)RS|KJ|NIWe can deduce from this that the human Fall was not the outcome of God’s predestination, but rather the result of man’s disobedience to God’s commandment. Again we read, “the Lord was sorry that he had made man on the earth and it grieved him to his heart.”3(Gen. 6:6)RS|KJ|NIIf the human Fall were predestined by God, there would be no reason for Him to grieve over fallen human beings, who were acting in accordance with His predestination. Moreover, it is written in the Gospel of John that whoever believes in Christ shall not perish, but have eternal life,4(John 3:16)RS|KJ|NI implying that no one is predestined to damnation.

      The doctrine that the outcome of human undertakings is determined not by God’s predestination, but instead by human effort, is supported by the well-known biblical verse, “Ask, and it will be given you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you.”5(Matt. 7:7)RS|KJ|NI If every human undertaking were to turn out as God had predestined, why did Jesus emphasize the need for human effort? The Bible instructs us to pray for our sick brothers,6(James 5:14-15)RS|KJ|NI suggesting that illness and health do not depend solely on God’s predestination. If everything were determined by inevitable fate, as predestined by God, our tearful supplications would be to no avail.

      We would expect that since God is absolute, when He has predestined something, it is fixed absolutely and cannot be altered by human effort. Therefore, if we accept the traditional doctrine that all things are absolutely predestined by God, then we have to conclude that no human endeavor, including prayer, evangelism or charity, can add anything more to God’s providence of restoration. Any extra effort beyond the natural course of events would be completely useless.

      Since there are ample grounds in the Bible to justify either of these two contrasting doctrines, controversy over the issue of predestination has been inevitable. How can the Principle solve this problem? We will consider the question of predestination by analyzing it under several topics.

      The Predestination of God’s Will

      Before discussing the predestination of God’s Will, let us first examine what is being willed. Let us remember: God could not accomplish His purpose of creation due to the human Fall. Accordingly, God’s Will in carrying out His providence for fallen humanity is still to accomplish the purpose of creation. In this sense, God’s Will is that restoration be accomplished.

      Next, we should know that God predetermines His Will before He works toward its fulfillment. God determined when He created human beings that they accomplish the purpose of creation. When God could not fulfill His Will due to the Fall, He determined to fulfill His Will once more through the providence of restoration and since then has worked to accomplish it.

      God must predestine His Will and bring about its realization in the ways of goodness, and not in the ways of evil. God is the Author of goodness. Hence, His purpose of creation is good; likewise, the purpose of the providence of restoration and His Will to accomplish its purpose are good. For this reason, God does not intend anything that obstructs or opposes the fulfillment of the purpose of creation. In particular, He could not have predestined the human Fall or sins which make fallen human beings liable to judgment. Nor could He predestine such events as the destruction of the cosmos. If such evils were the inevitable result of God’s predestination, then God could not be the Author of goodness. Moreover, if God Himself had predestined such evil outcomes, He would not have expressed regret over them as He did, for example, over the depravity of fallen human beings,7(Gen. 6:6)RS|KJ|NI or over King Saul when he lapsed into faithlessness.8(I Sam. 15:11)RS|KJ|NI Such verses illustrate that evil is not the result of God’s predestination, but rather the result of human beings failing to fulfill their responsibility and instead joining hands with Satan.

      To what extent does God predestine His Will – the ultimate accomplishment of the purpose of creation? God is the absolute Being, unique, eternal and unchanging; therefore, the purpose of His creation must also be absolute, unique, eternal and unchanging. Likewise, His Will for the providence of restoration, the goal of which is the accomplishment of the purpose of creation, must also be absolute, unique and unchanging. It follows that God’s predestination of His Will – that the purpose of creation one day be fulfilled – must also be absolute, as it is written, “I have spoken, and I will bring it to pass; I have purposed, and I will do it.”9(Isa. 46:11)RS|KJ|NI Since God predestines His Will absolutely, if the person who has been chosen to accomplish His Will fails, God must continue to carry on His providence until its fulfillment, even though it may require Him to choose another person to shoulder the mission.

      For example, God willed that His purpose of creation be fulfilled through Adam. Although this did not come to pass, God’s predestination of this providential Will has remained absolute. Hence, God sent Jesus as the second Adam and attempted to fulfill the Will through him. When Jesus also could not bring about the complete fulfillment of the Will due to the disbelief of the Jewish people, he promised he would return and fulfill it without fail.11(Matt. 16:27)RS|KJ|NI Likewise, God’s Will was to establish the family foundation for the Messiah through the dispensation based on Cain and Abel. When Cain killed Abel and this Will was not fulfilled, God made another attempt to fulfill it through Noah’s family. When Noah’s family also failed to fulfill the Will, God chose Abraham as yet another replacement and worked through him. We also see this with respect to the missions of individuals: God tried to remedy the failure to fulfill His Will through Abel by choosing Seth as his replacement.12(Gen. 4:25)RS|KJ|NI God tried to fulfill His Will left unaccomplished by Moses by choosing Joshua in his stead.13(Josh. 1:5)RS|KJ|NI When God’s Will for Judas Iscariot was nullified by his betrayal of Jesus, God made a second attempt to fulfill this Will by electing Matthias in his place.14(Acts 1:24-26)RS|KJ|NI

      The Predestination of the Way in Which
      God’s Will Is Fulfilled

      According to the Principle of Creation, God’s purpose of creation can be realized only when human beings complete their portion of responsibility. Although God’s Will to realize this purpose through the providence of restoration is absolute and beyond human influence, its fulfillment necessarily requires the accomplishment of the human portion of responsibility. Originally, God’s purpose of creation was to be fulfilled through Adam and Eve only when they completed their given responsibility and refrained from eating the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.16(Gen. 2:17)RS|KJ|NI Similarly, in the providence of restoration, God’s Will is accomplished only when the central figure responsible for a mission completes his portion of responsibility. For example, the Jewish people, as the central nation of the providence, should have believed in Jesus and followed him unconditionally in order for God to accomplish complete salvation at that time. Because they disbelieved and failed to fulfill their responsibility, the fulfillment of the Will had to be postponed until the time of the Second Advent.

      To what extent does God predestine the unfolding of the events in the providence? Although God’s Will to realize the purpose of the providence of restoration is absolute, God predestines the process of its accomplishment conditionally, contingent upon the five percent responsibility of the central figure, which must be completed in addition to the ninety-five percent responsibility of God. The proportion of five percent is used to indicate that the human portion of responsibility is extremely small when compared to God’s portion of responsibility. Yet for human beings, this five percent is equivalent to one hundred percent of our effort.

      To cite some examples: God predestined that His Will be fulfilled through Adam and Eve only when they refrained from eating the fruit and completed their responsibility. In the dispensation of restoration through Noah, God predestined that His Will be fulfilled only after Noah completed his responsibility by exerting himself with the utmost devotion in building the ark. In the providence of salvation through Jesus, God predestined that His Will be fulfilled only after fallen people completed their responsibility by believing in Jesus as the Messiah and rendering him devoted service.17(John 3:16)RS|KJ|NI However, time and again human beings could not cope with even their small portion of responsibility. Consequently, God’s providence has been repeatedly prolonged.

      It is written in the Bible, “The prayer of faith will save the sick man,”18(James 5:15)RS|KJ|NI “Your faith has made you well,”19(Mark 5:34)RS|KJ|NI and “For every one who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened.”20(Matt. 7:8)RS|KJ|NI These verses confirm that God predestines His Will to be fulfilled contingent upon human beings’ completing their portion of responsibility. We should recognize from these examples how minuscule the human portion of responsibility is in comparison to God’s toil and grace, which is His portion of responsibility. On the other hand, when we consider the fact that over and over again central figures in the providence could not cope with their responsibility, we can appreciate how extremely difficult it was for them to fulfill even this comparatively small portion.

      The Predestination of Human Beings

      Adam and Eve were to become the good ancestors of humanity, conditional upon fulfilling their responsibility to obey God’s commandment not to eat of the fruit. Accordingly, God did not absolutely predestine that Adam and Eve would become our good ancestors. The same holds for all fallen people: they can become the ideal people God has foreordained them to be only when they complete their responsibility. Therefore, God does not predestine in absolute terms what kind of people they actually turn out to be.

      To what extent does God determine the fate of an individual? The fulfillment of God’s Will through an individual absolutely requires that he complete his responsibility. Hence, even though God predestines someone for a particular mission, God’s ninety-five percent responsibility and the person’s five percent responsibility must be accomplished together before the person can complete his given mission and fulfill God’s Will. If the person does not complete his responsibility, he cannot become the person God has purposed him to be.

      For example, when God chose Moses, He predestined conditionally that when Moses fulfilled his responsibility, he would lead the chosen people into the blessed land of Canaan.21(Exod. 3:10)RS|KJ|NI However, when Moses transgressed God’s Will by striking the rock twice at Kadesh-barnea, he failed. Consequently, Moses died before reaching his final destination, and God’s intention for him to lead the people into Canaan was not realized.22(Num. 20:2-13)RS|KJ|NI; (Num. 27:13-14)RS|KJ|NI When God chose Judas Iscariot, He conditionally predestined that Judas would remain a loyal disciple of Jesus by faithfully completing his responsibility. Yet when Judas turned faithless, God’s expectation for him was not realized, and he ended up a traitor. When God raised up the Jewish people, God predestined that they would be glorified as the chosen nation when they fulfilled their responsibility to believe in and attend Jesus. However, when their leaders sent Jesus to the cross, this preordained destiny was not brought to pass, and the Jewish nation was scattered.

      Let us next examine God’s predestination of central figures in the providence of restoration. The purpose of God’s providence of restoration is to restore completely the fallen world to the original world which God intended. Therefore, although the times of their salvation may differ, all fallen people are predestined to be saved.23(II Pet. 3:9)RS|KJ|NI Yet, as was the case with God’s creation, His providence of salvation – a work of recreation – cannot be completed in an instant. It begins from one point and gradually expands to cover the whole. Therefore, in the providence of salvation, God first predestines one person to be the central figure and then calls him to a mission.

      What qualifications should the person possess to merit such a calling? First, the central figure must be born into the chosen people. Next, even among the chosen people, he must come from an ancestral line with many good accomplishments. Among the descendants of this outstanding lineage, he must be endowed with the requisite character. Among those with the requisite character, he must develop the necessary qualities during his early life. Finally, among those who have acquired these qualities, God selects first the individual who lives in a time and place most fitting to His need.

      Elucidation of Biblical Verses Which Support
      the Doctrine of Absolute Predestination

      So far, we have analyzed the various issues concerning predestination. Next, we shall look again at those biblical verses which seem to suggest that the outcome of every undertaking is determined by God’s absolute predestination and elucidate their meaning.

      Let us begin with the following verse:

      For those whom He foreknew He also predestined . . . those whom He predestined He also called; and those whom He called He also justified; and those whom He justified He also glorified. -Rom. 8:29-30RS|KJ|NI

      God, being omniscient, foreknows who has the qualifications necessary to become a central figure in the providence of restoration. God predestines those whom He foreknows; then He calls upon him to fulfill the purpose of the providence. Calling the person is God’s responsibility, but that alone does not entitle the person to be justified before God and given glory. Only when the person completes his responsibility after being called by God is he justified and then glorified. God’s predestination concerning an individual’s glorification is thus contingent upon the completion of his portion of responsibility. Because the biblical verse does not mention the human portion of responsibility, people may misinterpret it to mean that all affairs are determined solely by God’s absolute predestination.

      It is written,

      “I will have mercy on whom I have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I have compassion.” So it depends not upon man’s will or exertion, but upon God’s mercy. -Rom. 9:15-16RS|KJ|NI

      As was explained above, only God foreknows and chooses who is most suitable to fulfill the purpose of the providence of restoration. It is God’s right to choose a person and have mercy or compassion on him; this depends not at all upon human will or human effort. This verse was written to emphasize the power and grace of God.

      Paul also wrote,

      Has the potter no right over the clay, to make out of the same lump one vessel for beauty and another for menial use? -Rom. 9:21RS|KJ|NI

      It has been explained that God gave human beings a portion of responsibility as the condition based on which He could love them more than any other being in creation. God’s intention in giving this condition was to make them worthy to be the lords of creation by having them take after His creative nature. Yet human beings themselves violated this condition and fell. They have become like refuse, fit to be discarded. In such a state, fallen people have no cause to complain, no matter how God may treat them. This is what this verse teaches us.

      It is written that God loved Jacob and hated Esau even when they were still inside their mother’s womb and had not done anything good or evil. God favored one and disfavored the other and told Rebecca that “the elder will serve the younger.”24(Rom. 9:10-13)RS|KJ|NI What was the reason for this favoritism? God favored one over the other in order to set up a certain course in the providence of restoration. Although further details will be discussed below, God gave Isaac twin sons, Esau and Jacob, with the intention of having them stand in the positions of Cain and Abel. They were to make the conditions of indemnity necessary for accomplishing His Will to recover the birthright of the elder brother, which was lost when Cain killed Abel in Adam’s family. God intended to realize this Will by having Jacob (in the position of Abel) win over his elder brother Esau (in the position of Cain). Since Esau was in the position of Cain, he was “hated” by God. Since Jacob was in the position of Abel, he could receive God’s love.

      Nevertheless, whether God would in the end favor or disfavor them depended on whether or not they completed their given portions of responsibility. In fact, because Esau obediently submitted to Jacob, he was able to rise above his previous condition of being hated by God and receive the blessing of God’s love equal to Jacob’s. Conversely, even though Jacob was initially in the position to receive God’s favor, he would have ceased to receive it had he failed in his responsibility.

      People such as John Calvin have propounded the doctrine of absolute and complete predestination, which is widely believed even in our present day. They have held to such a doctrine because they wrongly believed that the accomplishment of God’s Will depends solely on the power and work of God. They were ignorant of the true relationship between God’s portion of responsibility and the human portion of responsibility in the fulfillment of the purpose of the providence of restoration. “

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        Jim Softy,

        You are talking about human inventions, God and Religions.

        Without humans, none of these would be issues,like several million years ago.

        However, Religion is needed in order to maintain the Monk( 4rd Gem of Triple Gem), Priest ( Pope, etc,), Mullah, Ulema and others.

        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N3gJh0l2iSs

        A brief history of religion. An excerpt from Zeitgeist.

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      Leonard,
      I have lived in the UK for almost two decades from 60s to 80s. To tell you how English treated others ‘first class’, let me quote an ad I’ve seen in a shop window in New Cross the very first day I landed there as a student: It said; ‘NO cats, NO dogs and NO blacks’. Have you ever seen such ads here in Sri Lanka Mr. Pito? I suppose not. If so, why do you insist Sinhala Buddhists treat others second class? It’s all in the prejudiced mind of those that mistreated the Sinhala Buddhists thinking they are the first class subjects during the 150 year rule of the British Raj.

      Another thing, as much as Velu was not concerned about the suffering of his victims, I too am least worried about which version of Velu’s death is correct. But talking about journalists, I sincerely sympathize with their plight. Not just journalists however, we’ve all have gone through a very difficult period for the last so many years. We were not sure whether we could come back home in one piece after work. Consolation now is that all of us are in a far far better position than during the thirty years of war.

      Referring to our topic now, Albert Schweitzer made his conclusion that Jesus of The New Testament is a myth long before those Dead Sea scrolls were found. I am sure you will agree with me that those Scrolls suggest that there were many messiahs stroll the valley of Galilee at the time. And all those messiahs were Jews, and their preaching was based on ‘The Torah’ to Jews only. Therefore, one should not put Albert Schweitzer logic out. Especially when we know that writing by various disciples is known to have stuck in caves around Dead Sea.

      Now most important thing is, none of those scrolls contain the evil sayings of New Testament Jesus. For that reason, we like to say, none of those scrolls were honestly presented to the public by Fr. R.de Vaux and a team of French archaeologists. It is strange that what God seeks so forcefully to reveal, the men of God are so determined to conceal. And those who hold positions of profit and prestige in that business will not allow mere truth to become a threat to their religion. Somehow, if not for action by two characters in particular, Saul of Tares and Emperor Constantine, the present day Christianity would have stuck at the Dead Sea caves and will not be out of nadir.

      For those of us who read the New Testament inquisitively, will soon come across the obvious contradictions. But for Christian scholars, there is an easy way out of them. Most of them say, such things are to be taken as metaphors. Though first time I’ve heard it, Pinto insists that four Gospels are not inconsistent but has different emphasis. But they are absurd suggestions. After all, Bible is the word of God.

      If Bible is the word of God, it is only natural to accept each phrase for what it is. Surely the God cannot say ‘no’ in one place and ‘yes’ in another on the same issue. But that is exactly what John 1:18 and Genesis 32:30 says. John 1:18 says; “No man hath seen God at any time.” But, Genesis 32:30 says; “… I have seen God face to face, and my life is preserved.”

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    Dear Leonard and Patriot,

    Who was Jesus of Nazareth or Galilee?

    Good discussion and debate. Here is a goof book on the Historical Jesus, called Zealot, by Reza Aslan.

    He basically says, yes there were many Jews and movements that wanted Palestine to be free from Roman occupation. The Priests were collaborating with the Romans. Jesus was one such Zealot, who was caught, tried and executed by the Romans for crimes against the state, and punishment for that was Crucifixion.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9fLoE3Sup_I

    Reza Aslan “Zealot – The Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth”

    http://lareviewofbooks.org/essay/on-reza-aslans-zealot-a-symposium/

    http://lareviewofbooks.org/review/marx-che-jesus

    The Jesus of Zealot is all about history. He is, politically, both left and right, a revolutionary communist and a zealous nationalist. He doesn’t claim to be the Messiah, but doesn’t mind people saying that he is. What he does know is that he is witnessing an impending cataclysm that demands his participation. Born in the Roman-occupied country given to the Jews by God himself, he knows well the tragic history of his people, which has taken them through slavery in Egypt, Babylon, and Persia, before returning them, still fond of their God, to the Promised Land. At his birth he finds them “at home,” but they are a client state of Rome, obliged to pay tribute to the Emperor. Rebels (“bandits,” to the Romans) belonging to every shade of nationalist sentiment are gathering followers in Judea, Galilee, and Samaria. The rebels are impatient with the arrangement that the Temple authorities have made with Rome. Messiahs-cum-revolutionaries appear, incite, and are executed. The Temple is barely holding on, but holding on it must, because the priests are also defending their own wealth and privileges. A class war, a war for independence, and a religious war have merged into an apocalyptic monster that threatens to engulf the homeland. By the time Jesus is born, the monster has already transcended its earthly demands. The ancient prophets of the Bible are raving again through new incarnations. Isaiah is once again alive. A radical theorist is birthing new God-filled Jews from the ranks of the malcontent by dunking them into the Jordan River. John the Baptist is preparing the way for Jesus. Marx is clearing the ground for Lenin.

    Read more…

    https://lareviewofbooks.org/review/78659/

    http://lareviewofbooks.org/review/art-of-rabble-rousing

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      I think you are entangled in a web of western science and hence confused of Buddhism. If you truly like to know about Nivana then try read and understand ‘Milinda Panha’.

      It is a the dialogue between King Menander I, Indo-Greek king of Bactria who plays the ‘Devil’s Advocate’ and a Buddhist sage, Nàgasena. To say it briefly, it discuses soul, transmigration, rebirth and etc in addition to dilemmas, perplexity, Nibbana and many other things that you often mention in the wrong sense. I hope it is of interest to you.

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        Patriot,

        “I think you are entangled in a web of western science and hence confused of Buddhism. If you truly like to know about Nivana then try read and understand ‘Milinda Panha’.”

        Science does not belong to the west only, even though it originated with Greek Science and Philosophy, went through Islamic Science, and was further developed over the past 500 years mostly by Western Europe. It is based on reason, investigation and supporting data.

        Aristotle and many others gave good reasons and gave a good debate as to why the Sun goes around he Earth, but the facts are different. The arguments by Nagasena are not much different. Galileo, Kepler, Newton and others have made errors too, but they were correct when they gave supporting data or valid reasons.

        The king, Milinda- Menander as a result of his discussions with the Venerable Nagasena, was overjoyed and humbled; he saw the value in the Buddha’s religion, gained confidence in the Triple Jewel, lost his spikiness and obstinacy, gained faith in the qualities of the Elder …..

        The same can be said, as above, of Christianity, Islam, Jainism, Sikhism,Protestantism, as the believers gave the benefit of the doubt and accepted thge beliefs without further investigation.

        http://www.as.miami.edu/phi/bio/Buddha/Milinda.htm

        The issue here is AFTERLIFE. How do you get data from Afterlife? Make up Jataka Stories of Buddhas Previous Births? According to the genographic project, the humans came out of East Africa about 65,000 years ago. The Jataka Stories do not go that far to East Africa.

        https://genographic.nationalgeographic.com/

        The fact remains, there is no supporting data or evidence for Nirvana, Nibbana, Rebirth, Samsara, Hell, Heaven, and Purgatory. They are all beliefs of the faithful, mental states while living, in this life, promoted by Monks, Priests, Mullahs and Ulema in order to maintain their Hegemony.

        Look, after death, there is a 7 day and a big 90 day Dhanna with many Monks, on behalf of the dead. The belief is that the the good Kamma, that will be accumulated by the Dhanna and Pirith will end up with the dead, and in the next life will be reborn at a higher level, and ultimately achieve Nirvana. They are all beliefs, but very soothing for the dear ones who had lost a lived one, and that is the best they can do. So, it is all about making life easy on the living. This is very helpful. Whether this is true or not is immaterial, but the faithful need to believe that his is true.

        This is the same with all believers. Believe in the dogma, and do not venture outside the dogma and be confused.

        All religions, can be true a the same time, as far as after life is concerned.

        From a risk minimization viewpoint, one can hedge the bets and follow ll the religions, like investing in a mutual fund.

        Read Pascal’s wager on risk of after life.

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          Correction

          “All religions, can be true a the same time, as far as after life is concerned.:

          All religions, CANNOT BE TRUE AT the same time, based on their dogma, as far as after life is concerned. Wither one religion is correct or all incorrect. Believers claim that their religion is correct, the one-true religion, and all others are incorrect. This was practiced to such an extent that non-believers were killed or faced untold agony.

          One talks about Heaven, the Other about Rebirth and Nirvana, and the Vikings, the Norse Religion talks about something else.

          Similar to many other societies the pre-Christian Viking religions also took interest in the eventual resting place of the dead. The Norse held so much dedication that went into making sure that the dead were cared for properly so that they could enjoy their resting place after death

          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Norse_religion

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      One BBC documentary says that Jesus was a buddhist monk for some time.

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        Jim Softy,

        Did Jesus know Magadhi in addition to Aramaic?

        Just curious, how did Jesus learn Magadhi?

        Is this another Jataka Story?

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      Jesus was baptised by some one else. If Jesus was son of the God why did Jesus himself choose some one else to baptise him ?

      The, Truth is, it was Romans who made him a something.

      Now, the Church made him a Messiah and the Son of the GOD.

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    Lenard did not talk here the negatives of Christianity Invading Sri Lanka.

    Such as Dutch Christians trying to eliminate Portuguese christians (that is in the past) and the present melodrama of Catholic – youth trying to be the Jesus for a Day. Priests got that ritual from Rural Philippines. In that, a youth get nailed to a cross with real nails and people take him in a parade and think that they see the Jesus, Youth think that he is the Jesus.

    They don’t want to understand or no one tells them, that was the way how Romans punished traitors to their kingdom or the Roman way of punishing Traitors.

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    Lenard”

    There is no SATAN. EVIL is there because humans think that Humans really exist materially (you can not understand this) and they are permanent.

    Explain this. I am posting this because you people are delusional and disillusioned

    “Christianity Myth #2:

    Adam & Eve disobeyed God by eating a forbidden fruit from a tree.

    All people have an original mind which inclines them to reject evil and pursue goodness. Yet, even without our being aware of it, we are driven by evil forces to abandon the goodness which our original mind desires and to perform evil deeds which, in our innermost heart, we do not want to do. As long as these evil forces assail us, the sinful history of humanity will continue unabated. In Christianity, the master of these evil forces is known as Satan. We have been utterly unable to liquidate the forces of Satan because we have not understood Satan’s identity or how he came to exist. To extirpate evil by its root, and thereby end sinful history and usher in an era of goodness, we must first expose the motivation and origin of Satan and recognize the destruction he has wrought in human life. This explanation of the human Fall will clarify these issues.

    The Root of Sin

    No one has known the root of sin, which lies deep within and ceaselessly drives people toward the way of evil. On the basis of the Bible, Christians have held to a vague belief that Adam and Eve’s eating the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil was the root of sin. Some Christians believe that the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil was the fruit of an actual tree, while others believe that the fruit is a symbol, as much of the Bible is written in symbolic language. Let us consider the Bible’s account of the human Fall and its differing interpretations in order to arrive at a complete explanation. “

    “http://www.tenbiggestmyths.net/religion/christianity/2a.htm”

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    I like to know:-

    When Budhism invaded Sri Lanka what was the religion the Veddahs were following.
    How were they converted.

    Was it by force,bodily harm and threat.
    Did the converted take to the by paths looking for veddahs and bashing the dayligts out of them,killing and ? woemen etc.

    Thankyou for an answer.

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      hannah,
      No Buddhist army ever invaded Lanka or any other country. Its just few Bikkus have come to preach Dhamma. Vedda never was a major race in Sri Lanka. Major races at the time of Wijaya’s arrival in Lanka were Yaksa, Naga, Deva and Raksa. Original Sinhalas were a mixture of Wijaya and those four races. Later on, south Indians had invaded and ruled this country at many occations. Whenever Sinhalas had chased them out the leftover were assimilated to Sinhala race. Veddas lived a jungle life. So, they have no chronicles or rock edits or monuments for them to ascertain their history. All they know is whatever they have heard from Mahawamsa readers.

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        MONGOLS WERE BUDDIST
        JAPS TOO
        CHINESE, BURMESE, THAI……..

        WHAT LATER, 200 YEARS; 300 BC SENA, GITIKA, ELARA.
        NO SINHALAS DURING RAMA-RAVAN TIMES, DEFINITELY SOUTH INDIANS.
        NORTH INDIANS BEFORE TO SL WHEN YOU SEE THE ISLAND FROM SOUTH INDIA IS LIKE SAYING JAFFNA PEOPLE WENT TO NUWARA ELIYA BEFORE GAMPOLA PEOPLE!!
        CONFUSED ARYAN SUPREMACY OF SOME GENOCIDE DECENDANT.
        VEDDHA IS THE YAKSA.
        NAGAS ARE IN SOUTH INDIAN NAGAPATTINAM TOO.
        RAKSHAS IN KARNATAKA AND MAHARASHTRA.

        7000 YEAS AGO SL WAS CONNECTED TO SOUTH INDIA.

        NAYAKAR KINGS WERE NO LEFT OVERS, BUT ROYAL INVITEES.

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    The watter cuuting ritual of the Perahera is a copy of the Tamil Nadu Kanaki, we call Pattini.

    There were many prophets around the time of Jesus.
    There were many around the time of Sidharha (his cousin, Mahaveera..)
    Their fame is mainly due to Romans & Mayurans.

    Best way to escape this ‘hated’ ‘western science’ is to not use internet.

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      Rukada Matriot,
      Go weekend tuition classes and learn a bit of English comprehension to learn how to put English words together and form a sentence.

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        Thanks, but no thanks!

        Broaden your horizon, you might understand.

        Language evolves.

        Go TO weekend classes…, you need it, as you are concerned.

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