17 October, 2017

Do We Have A Reformist Trend Within Sri Lankan Buddhist Society?

By Ummu Hana

Today we Sri Lankans have a government that badly failed within in many things including building and sustaining economic growth and stability and answering the national demands. In fact all the post-colonial governments of Sri Lanka badly failed the country.

Gnanasara BBSThe ruling Mahinda family together with JHU and BBS are victim of their own poverty of wisdom and lack of neutral thinking and driven by jealousy and inferiority are attempting to address distorted meaning to Buddhism by betraying and destroying the Buddhist values itself instead of building an economically and spiritually empowered human society. Letting this jealousy and inferiority in the name of Buddhism to go unchallenged is clear disaster for those who have hopes and wishes to enlighten the citizens through Buddhist values of dignity and wisdom that universal values too.

If the mainstream Buddhist Society of Sri Lanka fails to address and re-direct the Buddhist teaching toward freedom and dignity to humanity at this moment, the next opportunity for such reform will come with much cost and anarchy and such reform effort within the Buddhist society will be much harder than today. Sometime the Buddhist reformist trend may get another momentum in Sri Lanka when significant amounts of non-Buddhist citizens of this country are either killed or crushed. At that time, the challenge within toward reform will be much harder than today as the society lost hope and trust within the prevailing Buddhist activism.

Are we going to wait another two to three decades of anarchy and destruction in this land! Until that moment letting this victimized, distracted, pity and poor segments to used Buddhism in their narrowed distorted understanding to uproot their jealousy and inferiority is nothing more than a big blow to the future of Buddhism in this Country.

Unfortunately today we cannot see such a reformist trend within Buddhist Society in Sri Lanka who can address Lord Buddha’s teaching to local context to re-build good governance, sustainability and to empower the hearts and minds of people with dignity and wisdom. If there is such segment on the ground, for sure their voices are unheard and weak and we have to find ways and means to give voice to them.

As a citizen who believes pluralism and diversity as the language of new generation, I would say that failure to fix this trend within mainstream Buddhist society and mere change in the present ruling family alone might stop daylight racist aggression and planned violence perpetrated under curfew at Aluthgama, Beruwala and Dharganagar. But it will not do much good as needed to reform within the Buddhist society of Sri Lanka toward building as a nation with enriched teaching of Buddha that respect the freedom and wisdom of mankind.

The time has come to have extensive discussion within Sri Lankan Buddhist Society to cross check with the Buddhist values and context and re-set or enrich their path toward reform.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Latest comments

  • 2
    16

    When a Muslim asks Buddhist to follow the buddhist teachings and behave as buddhists, don’t we have to think that some thing is wrong some where. It is not just any one. It is another muslim talking here.

    Two foreign religions in Sri Lanka want buddhists to be buddhists. Why is that ? Both the Mosque and Church know what they want and what they are doing.

    Rajapakse name is just a SCAPE GOAT. They want Rajapakse to make things easy for them. That is why they are blaming rajapakses.

    Both groups do not want to change their way.

    • 6
      2

      JimSofty

      “Two foreign religions in Sri Lanka want buddhists to be buddhists. Why is that ? Both the Mosque and Church know what they want and what they are doing.”

      Let’s get the facts straight. DO NOT believe in the lies and imaginations of Para-Monk Mahanama.

      To Begin with, Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism, Islam, Christianity, Judaism, Sikkism etc. are ALL FOREIGN, or PARA RELIGIONS in Lanka, the Land of Native Veddah Aethho.

      The Native Veddah respected their elders who gave then life and their DNA which allowed them to continue life. They were egalitarians and respected human life. Did Buddha or Jesus give DNA? Buddha gave to son Rahula, and then committed child abuse.

      The Vedda Tribe

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f89NuukY32U

      Everything fell apart with the Arrival of the paras from South India.

      • 0
        2

        This comment was removed by a moderator because it didn’t abide by our Comment policy.For more detail see our Comment policy https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/comments-policy-2/

        • 2
          0

          Thana Kolla, exercise caution when you comment. You are getting far too many “DONGS” these days!

          • 0
            1

            buru mike with a buru comment to close the thread

      • 2
        1

        Ummu Hana,

        You say:

        “Today we Sri Lankans have a government that badly failed within in many things including building and sustaining economic growth and stability and answering the national demands. In fact all the post-colonial governments of Sri Lanka badly failed the country.”

        “Good government generally begins in the family, and if the moral character of a people once degenerate, their political character must soon follow.”

        said Elias Boudinot, Founding Father of the United States.

        Majority community go back and search what happens in your families. Then you will then get to the root of the matter of good governance there.

    • 5
      0

      Jim,

      Racism is ingrained in your psyche! Buddhism is also a foreign religion to SL, unless one views SL in the context of Indian sub-continent.

      Let me ask you again; are you for a just society where all the citizens of SL are equal in every respect? If yes; are you for removing the constitutional protection of Buddhism? In all seriousness, you cannot have a cake and eat it at the same time. SL is either a secular and democratic country, or an ethno-religious centric, Sinhala Buddhist dominated lopsided, and unfair shithole; so, which one would you choose?

    • 2
      0

      JimSofty

      Making things easy (ie, free from violence) is the expectation of any citizen as well as it is the responsibility of any government to its citizens.

      Whats wrong in demanding to be free from violence through our own reference? Isn’t it an indirect respect to Buddhist philosophy and demanding to contribute for violence free environment from Buddhist?

      The question we have to ask is how we are going to respond to these demands and witness to our own Buddhist values!!

  • 2
    4

    Muslims are not talking there side of the story. See, this is how people respond;
    ———-

    About half of all mosques and Muslim centres in Britain have been subjected to Islamophobic attacks since 9/11, it has been revealed.

    The figures, from the Islamophobia watchdog Tell Mama, found that between 40 and 60 per cent of mosques and other Islamic centres – about 700 – have been targeted in Britain since the 2001 attack on New York’s World Trade Center.

    It comes as English Defence League supporters prepare to gather in Woolwich at the scene of Drummer Lee Rigby’s murder later this afternoon.

    Drummer Rigby was hacked to death in front of horrified on-lookers in south-east London last month

  • 6
    2

    Ummu Hana –

    “Today we Sri Lankans have a government that badly failed within in many things including building and sustaining economic growth and stability and answering the national demands. In fact all the post-colonial governments of Sri Lanka badly failed the country.”

    Who failed are the Para-Sinhala who came by Hora Oru and Kallathonis to the Land of Native Veddah. Theit DNA in their bodies confirm that.

    Both the Prakrit and Draviduan speaking Kallthonis are Paras.

    Buddhism in Sri Lanka as practiced is called Monk Mahanama Para Buddhism, or simply Para-Buddhism.,

    It is NOT the religion as taught by Buddha

  • 11
    2

    You’re absolutely correct. We Buddhists should rise up or we will be complicit in killing off what ever remaining remnants of Buddhism from Sri Lanka! We’re being taken for a ride and may have no return. Stop these parasites from destroying Buddhism in Sri Lanka and installing their own Facist version to suit only their needs. As for the Sri Lankan Muslims, I believe they observe Pansil every day in their daily lives. Sadly only if the our saviors and heros in Aluthgama, Beruwela and Dharga town knew they;
    1) killed 4 people and injured 80+ (panatipata veramani sikkhapadam samadiyami) – injuring or killing any living thing
    2) Looted and stole lorry loads with state sponsorship (adinnadana veramani sikkhapadam samadiyami) – theft or taking that which is not given
    3) Listen and enjoyed pervasive speech filled with twisted sexual innuendo (kamesu michchhachara veramani sikkhapadam samadiyami) – immoral sensual enjoyment
    4) Lies upon lies upon lies that most people who know cant even believe that you can say so many lies and get away with it in this day and age (musavada veramani sikkhapadam samadiyami) – false speech or lying
    5) Listen to MP Thewarapperuma who has sworn in parliament that the intoxicated rioters included even robed monks (sura-meraya-majja-pamada-tthana veramani sikkhapadam samadiyami). – intoxication as tending to becloud and weaken the mind

    If the majority population who are “Buddhists” believe and follow Buddha’s philosophy (not the govt or BBS’s) then it will not only protect Buddhism for another millennium it will also protect the minorities and with it the country. So long as we are divided we will have out side influences destroying us from within like they have done for centuries. This is absolutely the last chance we have.

    THINK!

    • 7
      0

      Sri Lankan

      “You’re absolutely correct. We Buddhists should rise up or we will be complicit in killing off what ever remaining remnants of Buddhism from Sri Lanka!”

      Buddhism in Sri Lanka has become a Double Edged sword.

      When the Buddhist Sword was used to clear pristine forest tht belinged to Native Veddah, and used to preach the true Buddha Dhamma it was peaceful, egalitarian and just like the old days, before racistpara-monk Mahanama.

      How We have the Sinhalese Buddhism that is is being used to Kill and destroy.

      Buddha called them Mara. What we have in Lanka, the land of native Veddah, is Maraism, not Buddhism.

      The Saffron clad things, the “Sivura” Things are killers, Maras. The Sinhala Buddhist Terrorist Monks think that if they wear a saffron robe they are above the law, have immunity from crimes, and the state is behind it.

      This is is the real curse of Sinhala Buddhism.

      The Mara Rajapaksas are fully exploiting it. The Sinhala modayas are just waiting to made to more modayad, fools, s by lies, and more lies.

      • 3
        0

        Reasons for failure of emerging Buddhist revival group in Sri Lanka

        In Sri Lanka the failure of emerging Buddhist revival group is due to many reasons that needs heavy academic discussions within.

        The first and the foremost reason is the existing racially based higher education structure, specially when it come to theological studies.

        In Sri Lanka we separated the theological study into several faculties or universities and restricted the equal opportunity to students to learn the theology.

        Ultimately theological interpretation to modern issues is completely lacking in Sri Lankan Higher Education Sector and limited to learn how theology being used to enrich the society in the past.

        Thanks Ummu Hana
        https://www.facebook.com/ummu.hana.0/posts/516542091808057

  • 4
    0

    A timely article and an eye opener for the moderate buddhist society.
    Wake up Sri Lankan Buddhist Society…..!!!!

  • 1
    0

    Sometimes I wonder whether it is worthwhile expressing an opinion in these columns when every one is so divided.

    There is no reformist trend in Buddhism at this time. A reformist movement, however, is urgently needed to check the deterioration in Buddhist practice and the violent behaviour of those who profess to ‘safeguard Buddhism’. What we see is a mutation. It is not fundamentalism such as Islam is experiencing. Buddhist fundamentalism will inculcate in the people all the values of Metta, Karuna, Mudhitha, Upekha,etc.and will be good for the country.

    In my view the current change is driven by Buddhist priests and not laymen. They see that Buddhists are becoming less interested in temple worship and the flock is declining. The temples feel threatened by their declining influence. Many Buddhists are gradually becoming more interested in other religions, particularly the evangelical branches of Chistianity. This is to be expected when Buddha’s teachings on good conduct are openly flouted by bikkhus themselves. When bikkhus act as if they are gods and put themselves on a pedestal, and when more large edifices are built as demanded by incumbents of temples, the people see in all these the antithesis of Buddha’s teaching. They see arrogance, haughtiness, hunger for power, greed, cruelty, selfishness and all the trappings of the unworthy. So is it a wonder that people are moving away from Buddhism? The problem is with the monks. It is the monkhood that must change. As the much maligned Gangodawila Soma thera admonished, it is time Buddhist practice moved away from the current practice of offering flowers, lighting lamps, worshiping Bo trees, falling prostrate at concrete/cement statues of the Buddha, Buddha relics, or stupas. Buddhism has to be practised with Buddhist values. Without proper thought and conduct you cannot be a Buddhist even though you are registered in your birth register as such. A certificate cannot make you a Buddhist. No one needs to protect Buddhism as taught by the Buddha. It is up to monks to preach and teach, may be convince, but the choice is with each individual. The monks, or the government for that matter, have no choice.

    The answer is therefore with the Bikkhu and the Temple. They must change if Buddhism is to survive. As it currently stands, Buddhism has to be protected from the monks.

    • 0
      1

      Wickramasiri

      “The answer is therefore with the Bikkhu and the Temple. They must change if Buddhism is to survive. As it currently stands, Buddhism has to be protected from the monks. “

      It is all about Monk Hegemony. They want to control the politicians and the state. They claim they are above the Law. They claim politicians are irrelevant. They want perks and Benzes.

      Buddha asked the monks to have two robes and one bowl only.

      It is like the Christian Church long time ago. It is the Sinhalese Buddhist temple, Church.

      Yes, Sinhalese Buddhism is Terrorism, The data supports it.

      Sinhala Buddhists must become atheists or agnostics, and ask the Monks to follow true Buddhism.

      • 0
        0

        Amarasiri, Agree with you. Mahavamsa is a historical document which is embellished with fact and fiction. It cannot be considered a chronicle on Buddhism. The current history which Mahinda Rajapaksa is writing is the best example of how the “reign of the king” is recorded. Most of it is bullshit. I am convinced that, just as much as one Mahinda introduced Buddhism, the current Mahinda will destroy it. Not exactly deja vu but what a coincidence!

  • 1
    3

    This writer got it all wrong: The question should be, not about whether the Buddhists are practicing Buddha’s teachings but Muhammadans in Sri Lanka have become fundamentalist or Thowheeds. Thowheeds are Jihadists and they’re a threat to Sri Lanka as much as they (ISIS) are to Iraq.

    It is sad that Muslims have forgotten that, in the 16th century when they were mere traders and very few in number, Portuguese colonials had persecuted them and it was Sinhala Buddhist king named Senarath who gave them sanctuary in the East. Similarly when Catholics were persecuted by the Dutch Sinhala Buddhist king gave them sanctuary and saved them as well. That’s Sinhala Buddhist way of life throughout history. Is Muhammadan history the same?

    In spite of all that history, this writer Ummu says, “Buddhist Society of Sri Lanka fails to address and re-direct the Buddhist teaching toward freedom and dignity to humanity….” She should compare the kind of discrimination that minorities face in other south Asian countries face to that of Sri Lanka? Does she not know Ahamaddiyya Muslims seek refugee status in Sri Lanka right now?

    Our problem is we allowed minorities to think Buddhist monks have to keep their mouths shut because of vinaya. They think Sinhala Buddhists have to follow Buddha’s teaching and not hit them back as well. That’s why they accuse ven Gnanasara for starting the riot in Beruwala. Actual culprit is a Thowheed gang. We must teach them our history and show them they’re wrong.

    • 2
      1

      Banda,

      In fact real threat to SL comes from the Sinhala Buddhist Fundamentalists like you! You have no right to point your finger at the perceived Islamic fundamentalism in SL, when demonstrably you lot behave like lawless anarchists with impunity. You are the majority; you form the governments; you attack the minorities with state patronage! There is nothing claver about it is there?

      • 1
        3

        Even talk about is buddhist fundamentalism.

        Muslims all over the world are saints.

Leave A Comment

Comments should not exceed 300 words. Embedding external links and writing in capital letters are discouraged. Commenting is automatically shut off on articles after 10 days and approval may take up to 24 hours. Please read our Comments Policy for further details. Your email address will not be published.