“We are the disciples of the King of the Dhamma. In compassion towards you, Your Majesty, we have come here from Jambudeepa (India).”
This is the profound and impressive introduction of Arahant Mahinda Maha Thera who arrived in Mihinthale during the reign of King Dewanampiyatissa.
Today it marks the arrival of Arahant Mahinda Maha Thera in Sri Lanka along with the message of the Great Son of Sakya clan, who were born in Maha Bharath, the Gautama Buddha.
By admiring and respecting the Buddha’s impeccable words, Emperor Asoka who governed Maha Bharath – the ancient India, profoundly launched a Dhamma mission programme throughout numerous countries.
The Son of Emperor Asoka – the great disciple of the Fully Enlightened One, Arahant Mahinda Maha Thera was requested by his preceptor Venerable Moggaliputta Tissa Maha Thera to visit Sri Lanka to introduce an incomparable message of the Gautama Buddha and establish a dispensation of the Buddha in Sri Lanka.
Poson Poya or Full Moon Day of June is a significant month for Sri Lankan Buddhists who vibrantly commemorate it with many colourful cultural activities.
2328 years ago, the King Devanampiyatissa was a Head of State. There was a national festival; both people and the king took part of it at Mihintale which is situated in the vicinity of Anuradhapura.
At the present time, all ruins around Mihintale and Anuradhapura witness and testify, how that period and generation were prosperous and united. It was called and named the ‘State of Reservoirs and Island of the Dhamma’.
After amicable meeting and cordial discussion with Arahant Mahinda Maha Thera, the head of state and powerful leader, King Devanampiyatissa placed unwavering and unshakable confidence in three refuges or the Triple gem. He was very pious and devoted Buddhist leader who governed our country without hatred and prejudice. Not by words and lip service but genuinely by deeds, he supported to establish and safeguard the Buddha-Sasana in Sri Lanka.
Above mentioned facts were very visible and evident in the past in our history, but in the present, most of them have dramatically eroded away and become topsy-turvy because most people have embraced and obsessively follow so called “Party Politics” which dangerously and atrociously have changed the whole atmosphere in our human society. Human values, values of human life are degraded, and this has taken turn for the worse. Antagonism and animosity are vivaciously and lively visible. State of Dhamma or Dharmarajjyaya has perilously become a state of injustice. Corruption and injustice are the driving and governing forces in our society today. However, still it is not too late to re-establish the righteous way to lead our society to be united, harmonious and prosperous.
Arahant Mahinda Maha Thera never requested or proposed King Dewanampiya Tissa to be an authoritarian or tyrant. Maha Thera implanted Dhamma seeds and enriched him to be a righteous leader who wholeheartedly led the country towards justice and prosperity. Even father of Arahant Mahinda Thera, Emperor Asoka completely became a Dharmasoka by renouncing and abnegating the attitude of atrocity after meeting of well- composed young and enlightened disciple of the Buddha.
Fortunately, at that time, disciples of the Buddha or Buddhist monks were not politicized or never did party politics like today. Even though multitude of various preachers recite day and night, neither any positive improvement nor slight change in our human society today. Original teachings of the Buddha have inscribed and paraphrased into their own personal interpretations and dogmas.
Rulers, leaders, high prelates, Minister of Buddha Sasana and members of Task force of Buddha Sasana are blind and deaf. These individuals concentrate and dedicate only how to misappropriate and embezzle even from foreign borrowings and public funds. They have no compassionate thoughts about any destitute citizen. Multifarious classic examples were disclosed by social and digital media recently. All are intoxicated with power and funds. All are well corrupted and still try their utmost to misuse all public funds like wild dogs who are hunting wild animals.
Unfortunately, those who do not understand the benefit of wholesome kamma and repercussion of unwholesome kamma, will never refrain from wrongdoing and immoral activities.
Rulers, leaders, politicians, and their henchmen must be learning about THEMIYA JATHAKAYA in previous birth stories of the Gautama Buddha. Kindly advise Maha Nayakas and Anunayakas to read and preach daily to their leader about this special Jathaka Story. These people never understand the hardship of people currently they are going through. They never experienced hunger or any agony what these innocent citizens terribly experience today.
In the Dhamma it says immediately effective and to be experienced by wise for themselves.
Whether one believes it or not, the Law of Kamma will pave the way to one’s own destination which designs by oneself.
The Teaching of the Buddha completely based on the mind. In his first and foremost discourse he clearly and explicitly has explained about suffering, cause of suffering, cessation of suffering and the way to cessation of suffering. No one can understand this till one treads on this path. In words anyone can endlessly argue with various information and numerous facts but, in reality, till one eradicates one’s own defilements is not free from suffering.
We, as members of human family in the globe, experience the culture of violence. Hatred, jealousy, ill will, anger, resentment, animosity, craving, covetousness and many more mental toxics are the governing forces of one’s life. We rarely find some individuals are in opposite. They do not boast and bluster about their spiritual practice but silently they cultivate and develop spiritual inner qualities.
Lack of inner qualities and dearth of spiritual development have designed this atmosphere in our society today. Pursuit of commercial culture and materialism has paved the way to extermination of selflessness and effacement of other human values. Many people try to quench and satiate their insatiable desire and unquenchable craving till their last breath.
As a genuine disciple of the Blessed One, one should diligently follow the path of freedom and path of inner peace. The person who diligently and honestly practices the Dhamma will experience the taste of freedom.
Human life is very precious and worthy. No words, terms and phrases to descriptively elaborate the worth of human life. Only a human being can develop the mind. Only the human being can let go and abandon defilements. Only the wise human being can watch and read his or her own mind.
One should be a genuine human being, not in form but with innermost qualities.
This is the great message that we received 2328 years ago and compassionately Arahant Mahinda Maha Thera delivered us.
An Arahant Mahinda Maha Thera established the Buddha Sasana in Sri Lanka with paramount support of King Devanampiyatissa. He implanted the seeds of Dhamma in humanity. After embracing the Dhamma people completely changed the way they led their lives and substituted unblemished values of Dhamma. They genuinely understood the value of social and communal harmony and unity. Venerable Maha Thera introduced the culture of inner peace and remarkably revealed the true danger of culture of violence.
Venerable Arahant Maha Mahinda Thera’s life was very exemplary character. Even though he and his fellow monks received all supports from king Devanampiyatissa, he did not enter any political avenue. This is an outstanding and paramount distinguishable disposition of Arahant (Enlightened disciple of the Buddha).
We all know that any Arahant never will do it. He was the embodiment of a true disciple of the Buddha. He was neither bias to a king nor any other person in the country and led a life as a true disciple of the Buddha. Though Arahant Mahinda Thera was foreign to people at that time; he was greatly welcomed and treated with respect. Venerable Maha Thera perfectly completed his mission and contributed a unique treasure which is incomparable to any other. The message of the Gautama Buddha was established and the Head of state along with people started to follow the Buddha Dhamma.
The great Master the Buddha is our impeccable and incomparable role model. Arahant Mahinda Maha Thera was our spiritual leader. Specially all monks should reflect upon this remarkable character. The Dhamma mission he launched in a small island was extraordinarily successful and meaningful. The life he led in a foreign country was exemplary, not only for monks who live in the country but also for those have left the country for the Dhamma mission. Maha Thera never divided humanity into classes or groups, but he united all. Unfortunately, most so-called preachers have destroyed the whole society. Most of them are actively involved in party politics. They are the one who led this country into hell. Unfortunately, majority is not wise enough to understand this disaster.
Unfortunately, in order to preserve and secure their political hidden agendas our political individuals influenced and manipulated Buddhist monks to engage in politics after becoming independence. From the beginning we commenced to divide and separate. Even though people destructively criticize westerners, no one divided us, we, ourselves have separated and discriminated us. It is very apparent and distinct, even in so-called Sri Lankan, specially Sinhalese Communities in the globe. It is in fact ridiculous that they talk about Buddha, Dhamma and Sangha. These individuals are very keen to discuss, debate, argue and boast about their knowledge but practically they are very poor and incomplete.
What is the purpose to be a Buddhist monk? What is the prime role and responsibility as a monk? If someone examines though the whole teaching of the Buddha no one can find any advice or word that he has asked monks to engage in party politics. Now they have completely changed the Buddha’s words as they wish. This is the disaster in our country now.
The language they use is despicable. The words they verbalize are atrocious and shocking. The quality of the monkhood has been completely stigmatized and ignominiously disparaged. Young generation has no examples and if they take and follow these immoral activities unfortunately this is the downfall and catastrophic disaster for our future generation.
This is the way that monk should behave as a true disciple of the Buddha thus:
“Good is restraint in the body; good is restraint in speech; good is restraint in thought. Restraint everywhere is good. The monk restrained in every way is freed from all suffering” (The Buddha)
“He who is friendly amidst the hostile, peaceful amidst the violent, and unattached amidst the attached – him do I call a holy man.” (The Buddha)
One’s own introspection is the profound examination and analysis. If someone honestly excogitate on one’s own inner behaviour with great deal of changing the manner which mostly discloses in words and deeds, will encourage correcting in righteous way that leads to true peace and happiness.
Now the time has arrived to look inward for every one of their own mentality, thoughts, feelings, how they treat others, what refined language they speak with others, how they address others, how polite you are, do you verbally hurt or physically harm others, are you jealous of others, are you happy about others achievements and accomplishments, are you strong enough to tolerate others mistakes, do you discriminate others, do you tolerate others beliefs, faiths and culture, and so on.
Human rights and equal rights are the most crucial and exigent issues in our global society today. Individually, multitudes of people hold discussions and criticize as they wish according to their political partiality and personal propensity. But people rarely concern about their own individual vicinities and nuclear families, such as home, office, school, working place and so on. This is very pivotal and significant fact which most people have forgotten.
Freedom of expression and freedom of speech are under threat. Police interrogations, multitude of inquiries and investigations have revealed the fact that how visible and conspicuous the danger and the threat in our society now.
History has taught a lesson. Arahant Mahinda Maha Thera was an exemplary spiritual master. Hope bhikkhus (Buddhist monks) will follow his examples rather making or building gigantic statues of Arahant Mahinda Maha Thera, and misguiding innocent devotees.
As a righteous and virtuous head of state who wholeheartedly practiced the Buddha Dhamma and compassionately governed the country, king Dewanampiyatissa was an outstanding leader and the ruler. Hope present ruler will be compassionate towards our citizens.
Compassionately appeal wise, intelligent, kind both young and matured people to think about our future generation and change the system which we have been miserably experiencing and despondently enduring since independence. Millions of youths are in a very desperate, and their aspirations are in a dull situation. Let us join to change the system of cheating innocent citizens for the benefits, well being and happiness for our future generation irrespective of religion, race or ethnicity.
“Watchful of speech, well controlled in mind, one should not commit evil with the body. Let one purify these three courses of action, and win the path made known by the Great sage – the Blessed One.”
“Overcome the angry by non-anger; overcome the wicked by goodness; overcome the miser by generosity; overcome the liar by truth.” (The Buddha)