20 October, 2020

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Mahavamsa Buddhism Of Wigneswaran And Sharmini

By C. Wijeyawickrema

Lankaweb readers need to surf Colombo Telegraph (CT) website to get an idea of the crazy things taking place on the other side of their world. It is full of examples reminding us the Sixteen Dreams of the King Kosol. Recently, I saw two news items on CT. First was by one Sharmini Serasinghe, who on her own words “was Director Communications of the former Secretariat for Coordinating the Peace Process (SCOPP) under Secretary Generals Jayantha Dhanapala and Dr. John Gooneratne, with over thirty years in journalism in both the print and electronic media” says the late Ven. Piyadassi of the Vajirarama taught her so many things as a child including the habit to sit at the table with him. The second CT story (Jan 8, 2014) reports, “against this background, Wigneswaran referred to an article published in the Colombo Telegraph, titled Mahawamsa- An insult to the Buddha by the Sinhalese journalist Sharmini Serasinghe, saying it was an exceptional article that portrays the truth.

mahinda_rajapaksa_anuradhapuraCT goes on, reporting “…Speaking at the inauguration, of the SOS Children’s Village in Jaffna last Sunday 5th January, Wigneswaran said that Sinhalese Buddhist propagandists, were claiming that Sri Lanka was a Sinhalese Buddhist country, and therefore other communities must live according to how the majority community wished……He further pointed out, that these propagandists needed to be reminded, that the Tamils were always here, as the majority of the North and East of the country. He said that this was acknowledged in a letter to Sir Ponnambalam Arunachalam, by illustrious personalities such as E A Samarawickrama, and Sir James Peiris, way back in 1919……He added that, these Sinhalese Buddhist propagandists were using, the 6th Century AD Pali Chronicle- the Mahawamsa, to create ill feeling against Tamils, by portraying them as aliens……Wigneswaran warned that, if the country’s distorted history is continued to be taught in schools, trouble will inevitably ensue. Therefore he suggests, for a panel of Sri Lankan and foreign experts, to be entrusted with the task of re-writing Sri Lankan history impartially, from the earliest times, to that of independence from British rule, in 1948. (The story above is based on the report filed by PK Balachandran‘s to Indian Express).

It was after the second story by Wigneswaran that I decided to read the first story by Sharmini S. I record here what I thought about these two crazy stories.

Mahavamsa Buddhism

Sharmini S (SS) says she is a Sinhala Buddhist refined or cleaned by the St. Bridget Convent and trained as a child by the late Ven. Piyadassi, including such new habits like sitting at the same table with monks. One wonders why she lists think kind of habit in public writings (I think, she thinks that she discloses a pure, logical and rational Buddhist (Kovur-Carlo Fonseka type?) living within her by this incident).  The only thing I can remember a female sitting at the same table with a monk was between Buddharakkitha and Wimala Wijewardena having dinner together, implicated in killing SWRD in 1959.

Why this SS who says she is pure and genuine SB from her mother’s and father’s side despise all kinds of customs and practices by Buddhists in Sri Lanka and elsewhere? We all know there are Hindu influence in Buddhist worship patterns and living patterns. Is she going to start a crusade against them now in 2014? In the past Buddha was remembered in temples by a rock. But in later years the erection of statutes etc. began, especially after the Greek arrival in the Gandhara Region. Now about one-third of the sacred space of a Buddhist temple is devoted to Hindu gods and goddesses.  This influence can be seen so clearly when one considers the custom prevailed with regard to the donation of male infants to the Dalada Maligava by the Kandyans. The infant was placed inside the Relic room and redeemed by making a donation. This custom was not allowed in case of a female infant. But everybody forgot that the Dalada was brought to Sri Lanka by a woman hiding it on her hair on the head!

Those who live in western cold climates know how important it is to have a temple environment full of shrines, Bo trees and Naga trees etc. where intelligent, very intelligent, not so intelligent, average and even foolish devotees felt calmness, cool or hot breeze and rain and sunshine on temple lands, day time or with full moon. This is why SS warns her CT readers in her essay: “… Caution- The following is more suitable for the broad-minded and the wise. Others are kindly advised to pass!  ….. Wonder if ours might have been a wiser, and a more ‘humane’ society, had our ‘ancient’ history, been based on Aesop’s Fables, instead of the Mahavamsa. For if not for the Mahavamsa, the Sinhalese may not have been endowed, with the reputation, of “Sinhalaya Modaya (The Sinhalese are Fools)”!”  Yes, Buddhism can be on a CD rom and in a library so Einstein kind of people can use it. Why temples and customs and habits?

Surely, SS is badmouthing. SS should know that the real purpose of offering flowers is to remind people that life is temporary like the flowers are temporary. Everything in the world is impermanent, like the beauty of a young woman. In anything we think bad there is good. SS suggests that the study of religions should be compulsory for all children. This is a wonderful idea. She should convince Wigneswaran to start this in NP schools. She can even develop a course for university students, titled, “Come and examine, not come and believe.”

Historian Wigneswaran

Wigneswaran (W) picked up what he wanted from what SS wrote. SS was confused between the Mahavamsa and the Tripitaka. This is why SS says Mahavamsa was an insult to Buddha! Mahavamsa is a history book, and it was never taught in Sunday Temple Schools as part of Buddhism books. The only connection it had with Buddha was that it was written by a Buddhist monk.  As a history book it helped British historians in mid 1800s to identify King Asoka in India. There were other history books before Mahavamsa and nobody said Mahavmsa was another Bible. It recorded Tamil invasions, Sinhala kings having matrimonial alliances with South Indian kings, using Tamils as hired army etc., but it does not report a Tamil kingdom established in the island. It even gives an impartial account of the temporary Tamil king Elara. By careful study modern historians saw in it how the king Dutugemunu’s war to oust Elara was so well strategically planned by his father.

Mahavamsa was neutral about W’s claim of two nations. Actually, W’s problem is that he cannot locate any canal, tank or monument to link with his Tamil nation. Yes there were Tamils, but no Tamil nation. They and Muslims lived as Sinhala king’s minority subjects. Not satisfied with this historical reality W began the history of Sri Lanka from 1919, by his famous Thantia talk, which was his debut to TNA politics soon to commence. In a previous essay, Wigneswaran: New Tamil Moses, I discussed this plan of W. “…..Taking a similar stand, Wigneswaran is also cutting out history. His history begins only from 1921 with a James Peiris and a Samarawickrema, not with Elara, Dutugemunu or a Vijayabahu I. This is plain and simple dishonesty on his part. W based his right for a separate country on the agreement two Sinhala Christians made accepting Tamils as a separate nation in the Island!

…….During 1921-23 there was a conspiracy to make the majority Sinhala Buddhists a legislative minority, by making the combined number of Tamil and Muslim representatives equal to the total number of Sinhala representatives. Wigneswaran is referring to this coup promoted by the then British governor, but flatly refused by the London establishment. The coup was between two Sinhala Christians, and Tamil and Muslim agents….”

Tamils in Sri Lanka got all a minority group wants to live as equals in Sri Lanka. But W is not happy with it. May be he wants a situation like Quebec in Canada: two national flags, two national anthems and the like. W has become MahindaR’s albatross. He now wants to distribute gifts to Prabhakaran prisoners in jail on the Thaipongal day! He will have a party after the March 28 Geneva victory. He will then has his group to re-write history of Sri Lanka with foreign editors as he wished.

Folks, two games are going on. W is massaging the Tamil separatist ego with projects like prison foods and re-writing history. This is W’s beggar’s wound. MahindaR has his beggar’s wound in W and Geneva threat. He will use this to win PC elections. The game will go on until Sri Lanka is finished as a Muslim country or an appendage of Tamil Nad. It is time to begin the overland bridge that Ranil W wanted to erect linking Tamil Nad and Mannar!

P.S.  By the way CT also has even a few objective-minded readers. See the comment below. When Wigneswaran read the SS essay if he also read this comment just below it, perhaps, he would not have praised her essay.

This (SS essay) is an evangelist-sponsored project. Cant one see that from the language/arguments used -no different from what the Evangelists are teaching children in their Baby classes at Polonnaruwa are asking, as some one remarked – and the popularity rating of near 775 responses received, just like in best sportsman of the year or best website contest. It is all part of the game/the pop. quiz et al. There is nothing new said here except recycling old hat. The missionaries used this language she has spoken/arguments used for over three centuries in this country.The Portuguese Bishop in Goa even pulverized in a crucible, an alleged Tooth Relic of the Buddha when the King of Burma had offered handsomely for its possession. It is not what is said that is important but the cheer crowd. That is the new strategy. Just as the missionaries did in the 19th century Ceylon, buy tapping the rich and the influential,including a few Buddhist Bhikkus like the one who came to be known as David Silva and became a spokesman for the Christian religion, today’s Evangelists know whom to tap. In Africa they first converted the prostitutes and through them their clients. Clients were satisfied:God was honoured! No difference here. They have known whom to tap. Though the writer may not have the academic learning of a David Silva, she has other attractions, notably communication skills, all round. That is far more important today. She [Edited out] That is where the crunch is. Don’t blame the Buddhist extremists. Extemism begets from challenges like this, whether it is in the form of BBs or Ravana Balaya,or Vadamal Thailaya. That is how Arumuka Navalar was produced in the Jaffna society and Anagarika Dhemapala among the Sinhalese Buddhists. it is the “Challenge and Response” as the Historian said. Next time, Why does not she write about the “Immaculate Conception’ of the Christians, or the Hindu women tonguing/or rubbing against stone male stone Linga (penis); or the Gay rights? Will she try to get away saying, No I am no Christian, or stone Linga -grabber, nor Gay. What happened to those within the the Christian fold who questioned the Immaculate Conception. Ex-communicated? or sent to oblivion like one of our own fathers. What about the gay supporting Christain priests? What happened to the popularly exhibited French film “Nun for Christ”? Did the film makers get away easily? Does her claim to some Buddhist connection make her the right choice -the medium -for on going bashing of last vestiges of Buddhism remaining in the form of ritual, belief system etc? the game is clear enough. the writer is playing ball with anyone who pays. A former Director General of SLBC, who was declared Buddhist in his days at lest openly went over as a Christian propagandist and that for money. Why doesn’t she declare herself, likewise?.

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Latest comments

  • 14
    5

    For Gods Sake CT we had enough of this Sri Lanka Sinhala Buddhism crap here. Please no more articles on Sri Lanka Sinhala Buddhism. Look at the video of Bduhhist Monk attacking Churhces and Mosques …..that is Sri Lanka Sinhala Buddhism.

    • 7
      2

      C. Wijeyawickrema,

      “The game will go on until Sri Lanka is finished as a Muslim country or an appendage of Tamil Nad”.

      Most definitely YES,with the help of perverted racist, Sinhala-Buddhist scum like you!

      By the way, did that clown Prof. Kapila what’s-his-name, put you up to this?

    • 5
      2

      Wijeyawickrema is a now a confirmed CAD!

      In a previous post he claimed that naked Tamil brides are bathed by relatives of the groom and now he claims, that “Hindu women tonguing/or rubbing against stone male stone Linga (penis)”.

      Wijeyawickrema, you are an uncouth and a disgusting man.

    • 7
      3

      This C. Wijeyawickrema is just another clown on CT forum. What he writes is nothing but Gibberish. If he cannot help, but continue writing Gibberish, let him dump his rubbish in a place that suits him best instead of spoiling this esteemed forum (CT) which is read by broad minded and wise people.

      There are better places to dump rubbish than a public forum like this, let him continue to dispose his rubbish to Lankaweb that is visited by only a very few RACISTS.

      • 1
        0

        POLITICAL LEADRS LIKE D S SENANAYAKE AND BUDDHIST LEADERS OWE A GREAT DEAL TO SIR JAMES PERIES.

        The riots of 1915 occurred during the great war. Moors had suffered at the hands of some Sinhalese. The British over reacted. Many innocent persons were punished, accused and executed. The finger of blame was pointed at the Sinhala Buddhists. Sir James Peiris led the campaign for a Royal Commission of Inquiry and the vindication of the reputations of those who had been falsely accused.

        Lord Chalmers, the British Governor, attempted to bring pressure on James Peiris to step aside from his campaign. He was assured that as a Sinhala Christian there was no question of he or other Christians being implicated. James Peiris treated this offer with disdain.

        The consequence of the actions of the Colonial Government was that the people realised that the only way they could avoid the repetition of a similar situations of abuse of power was by obtaining more control over matters of Government.

        THESE BUDDHISTS ALSO OWE A GREAT DEAL TO THE CATHOLIC DENZIL KOBBEKADUWA, ROSHAN GUNATILAKE, JAGATH DIAS…..

  • 12
    2

    Not only a Bo-Tree that Buddha took refuge in attaining enlightenment, but it is said that he also took refuge under a ‘Kiri Palu Tree’. Now all these are stories related by others, as there was no one in attendance to confirm so. Even the story that Buddha without a wink kept looking at the Bo-Tree as a mark of respect, ‘Animisa Lochana Pooja’ is what is related in Buddhist Scriptures narrated by others. This practice has led the present day Buddhists to place Buddha statues under every Bo-Tree at every nook and corner, mostly propagated by the ubiquitous crow, where electricity is drawn from the closest electrical post to highly illuminate the shrines at State Cost, with a till on the side for collection of charity. All in all these contraptions are mere sources of marketing Buddhism to earn a fast buck for those involved in selling the Dhamma. This form of Idol worshiping is certainly not a Buddhist practice that Buddha preached or encouraged although one may argue that the less intelligent should be free to adopt such practices. If Buddhism is to serve, to develop human minds, then such practices will never allow the average to come off ignorance and will suit fine for those who exploit such masses for their personal gain as seen in the present context.

    See in the Photo above, the Biggest Liar, Biggest Rogue and the Most Dangerous Killer, hugging the Bo-Tree held by the Buddhists as an object of veneration? The Truth is, it is just another tree and these Corrupt Buggers know very well they have no magical powers, although the Moda Sinhalese are made to believe they are the living Buddhas. As long as we have a Native mind set of continuing to worship trees and objects of statues of stone, cement and clay, like the primitive did, this Sinhala Buddhist Nation will never be emancipated and will continue to be slaving under the arm of these unscrupulous individuals for a long long time to come.

    • 5
      1

      Gamini,

      You have echoed the exact views of Sharmini Serasinghe, but most readers don’t get it.

  • 10
    1

    CW should advise viharathipthis to demolish Vishnu Shrines in premises of buddhist temples, to ensure ‘purity’ of buddhism.
    Also advise bhikkus not to take part in politics,attack other places of religious worship,travel in luxury cars and perform Pindapatha daily as laid down by the Buddha to his disciples.

  • 11
    1

    President has time to talk to the tree but no time to talk or listen to the people

    • 4
      1

      YOU ARE DEAD RIGHT.

      HE IS JUST AN ACTOR BY ALL MEANS. BUT THE MANY OF THESE BUDDHA INTOXICATED FOOLS – THAT LET FOOL THEM AGAIN AND AGAIN – TAKE LONGER TO GRASP THE REALITY OF THE MR RULE.

      If this man is that buddha intoxicated – to the manner is being shown on this pic – she should also have all equal treatments to his all folks. As got to see in Hikkaduwa area day before yesterday, letting adults monks to guid their samaneras for vandal activities together with criminal laity ^s help, pass the messege across the globe that this country is no longer buddhistic.
      If any leader stay paralyzed not reacting adequately – he has commited all crimes than the ones who really committed them.

      • 0
        1

        applogies:

        he should also have equal treatments to his all folks

  • 14
    3

    Wijeyawickrema, the following applies to you,

    “Any fool can criticize, condemn and complain – and most fools do”-
    Benjamin Franklin

    • 11
      1

      Goofy,

      I would like to add the following to your well chosen quote.

      Wijeyawickrema, the following also applies to you,

      “Those who will not reason, are bigots, those who cannot, are fools, and those who dare not, are slaves.”
      ― George Gordon Byron

      “Any fool can criticize, condemn and complain–and most do.”
      ― Dale Carnegie

      “There are two ways to be fooled. One is to believe what isn’t true; the other is to refuse to believe what is true.”
      ― Søren Kierkegaard

  • 10
    1

    Wigneswaran quoted only what an educated buddhist lady who only beleives in “pure buddhism” said.
    He agrees with her.
    If C.W does not agree with her,why attack Wigneswaran?

  • 6
    1

    This fellow wants Buddhism to be what we see on the roads here in Sri Lanka. Well I doubt if any buddhists want this Sri Lankan Buddhism which is nothing other than fascism.

  • 6
    1

    How did this clown C. Wijeyawickrema manage land another piece of his gibberish on CT?

    I thought he was BANNED from CT, after making a perverted reference in his last post, about a naked Tamil bride being bathed by the a Groom’ s close relatives!

    • 2
      2

      Exactly CT is losing crdibility….

    • 2
      1

      According to the Mahavamsa and the Dipavansa, the son (Mahinda) and the daughter (Sangamitta) of the Indian Emperor Asoka were responsible for converting the King of Lanka and his people to Buddhism. However, Dr. V.A. Smith names the story in the Mahavamsa, related to this conversion as nothing but a ‘tissue of absurdities’ (V.A. Smith, Asoka page 45)”.

      Unfortunately, this Parakrama and the kind of people seem to believe anything compact in Mahavamsa.

      • 2
        2

        Dear Sun,

        You stated ” Dr. V.A. Smith names the story in the Mahavamsa, related to this conversion as nothing but a ‘tissue of absurdities’ (V.A. Smith, Asoka page 45)” ”

        I could not find your quoted text in page 45 of VA Smith’s book but I found the following interesting statement on that page.

        Referring to the earliest Ceylonese chronicles written by a Buddhist monk, 6 centuries after Asoka’s rock edict XIII of 256 BC, VA Smith says,

        Quote
        The omission of the Tamil countries of Southern India may be ascribed to the secular hostility between the Sinhalese and the Tamils of the mainland, which naturally would indispose the oppressed Sinhalese to recognise the ancestors of their oppressors as having been brothers in faith.
        Unquote

        He identifies the Lanka Tamils as the Oppressors of the Sinhalese at that point of time in history.

        Kind Regards,
        OTC

    • 5
      2

      This clown Wijeyawickrema seems to be a misogynist and a cad.

      First he talks of naked Tamil brides being bathed by the groom’s relatives and now he claims “the Hindu women tonguing/or rubbing against stone male stone Linga (penis)”

      CT, why do you publish posts by perverts like this fellow Wijeyawickrema?

      Let him continue to shit on Lankaweb, but please don’t pollute CT which attracts highly respected and erudite writers and readers.

  • 2
    1

    C. Wijeyawickrema

    Did you and Sharmini Serasinghe go to the same Daham Pasala?
    You two are like a tottering old lady without teeth finding something to chew on all the time. Have mercy on us the poor readers.

    • 4
      0

      Just ME,

      There are plenty of other posts on CT for you to read.

      You are not obliged to read posts on this subject and comment as well.

  • 7
    1

    Actually,Mr.W.is doing a great disservice to the majority sinhala-Buddhists,by his prejudiced reasoning.It looks as if he has taken over from where the Mahavamsa left.

  • 4
    8

    What SS cannot understand despite her self-assumed understanding of Buddhism that gives glimpses of its shallowness is that she is unfailingly wrong in her ability to distinguish Buddhist culture from Buddhist philosophy.Her entire grouse seems directed against popular Buddhist culture that includes ritualism,symbolism,worship et al. What was basic to such cultural practices was respect,veneration that the life of Buddha emanated in the minds of people that spanned across different cultures and countries over the last twenty five centuries.In spiritual terms it is shaddha with which the Buddhists all over the world try to follow his philosophy for Shaddha is essential for every Buddhist in his quest in entering the noble eight fold path which according to Buddhas teaching is the only path to non-birth that ends suffering.All Pruthagannas or humans though claiming to know the true Dhamma ,having read the scriptures or associated the company of some reputed monk cannot truly claim to have achieved true wisdom unless they live within the dhamma.

  • 3
    1

    Dear Mr. C. Wijeyawickrema and CT Readers,

    A German tourist who visits Sri Lanka regularly for decades, Mr. Christian Eckert of Hamburg, wrote in 2005, almost two decades ago, an article titled “The Next Tsunami Coming to Sri Lanka is a Religious One”. Mr Eckert is a 2004 Tsunami Victim who experienced the Tsunami at the Light House in Galle.

    It is replete with first hand experiences of Mr. Christian Eckert that will shed some light on why Buddhism is under such intense attack today 19 years after Mr Eckert’s observations.

    He says “Few Weeks ago my colleague Laith Ganhewa and myself were almost equally shattered, towards the end of our three week trip to Sri Lanka, as we came upon the more or less disguised, in parts also massive and direct attempts of Christian fundamentalist groups in converting mostly native Srilankan Buddhists and Hindu tsunami victims they claimed to rush to selfless aid into reborn Christians”.

    The full article is available here http://conversionagenda.blogspot.com/2005_05_01_archive.html.

    I have also posted the Full Article in CT at https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/video-buddhist-monk-led-mob-attacked-christian-church/comment-page-2/#comment-849010

    Kind Regards
    OTC

    • 4
      1

      so if there are large scale conversions as you state, then we should be overrun with christians right, but that’s not the case LOL

      • 0
        0

        Hey Impersonator,

        YOu want to be Off the Cuff? What a Dumb thing to do. Your signature logo is different to the original. The original is PURPLE yours is Green (with Envy?). Change that too you fool.

        • 0
          0

          Well, well, well!!!!!!!!

          So you Kanchana Perera is this insufferable fool ‘Off the Cuff’!

          • 0
            0

            Dream on Detective,,,, Dream on!

  • 1
    2

    For Me, Wigneswaran’s Statement is, a [Edited out] trying to rewrite his naturalized country’s history for his advantage.

  • 0
    0

    [Edited out]

  • 1
    2

    CT readers need to surf Lankaweb for light hearten entertainment with the main cheerleader Fathima (aka Lorenzo) gunning for a Military Coup -LOL(Regime Change)with their diashora patriot version of a Cabinet and Select Committee Representatives. Hilarious stuff
    Better than all the repeat tele-dramas.

    Keep up the good work Fathima (Lorenzo)

  • 2
    5

    Tamil [Edited out]here are crying . They have no idea than no sinhala child uses the Mahawanse as a text book or for that matter reads it. I had not read the book till I was middle aged ,and even then because my son took an extraordinary interest in History . it is the chronical of the Sri Lankan people and history book . every set of people in the world has something of this nature . Go check out the viking chronicles .

    Only utter fools like Sharmini think this is a buddhist book . add to this the bearded fool wiggy .

    I guess they are right in saying only the bad lawyers become judges .

    • 5
      1

      Abhaya,

      It is only “utter fools like” like you who are unable to get the message of intellectuals like Sharmini Serasinghe.

      You appear to be suffering from dyslexia.

      • 0
        0

        did you ask indikatupancha ?

  • 1
    7

    Mr. C.Wijayawickrama: You have drawn the attention of the Lanka Web readers to CT. to get an idea of crazy things that are happening on the other side of the world. Whether the things reported in CT are crazy or not depends on each ones views and opinions. But one thing I have observed is and giving credit to CT is the freedom with which the readers are permitted to express opinions on the subjects discussed.This very presentation by you bears testimony to that fact.

    However, you being a contributor to the Lanka Web and I being a reader there, it is very interesting to note your reference to Mr. Wignesewaran’s speech made on January 5th 2014 at the inauguration of the SOS Children Village in Jaffna, to quote: “Sinhalese Buddhist propagandists were claiming that Sri Lanka was Sinhalese Buddhist country and therefore other communities must live according to how the majority community wishes”….

    You being a both a contributor and a reader of Lanka Web, did you not come across this expression on the same day (January 5th) by way of a comment on Kumar Moses article titled “Exposed: Tamil Plan to Revive the LTTE and Blame the Government” posted on January 2nd 2014?

    The comment said: “WE WANT TO KEEP SL AS A UNITARY BUDDHIST COUNTRY”.

    This is the latest “CAMPAIGN” introduced to bring in another “DISASTER” to Sri Lanka. This time it is a “Laboratory Tested” (outside Sri Lanka) sugar coated bitter pill, marketed locally and internationally. The campaigners are very busy at the moment timing it to coincide with the March 2014 Geneva drama. I tried to expose this at the Lanka Web (I must thank Lanka Web for allowing me to do that) and the propagators were very quick to “brand” me a “LTTE+UNP”.

    However this slipped the minds of the very many readers there, including you, but I am doing my best to defuse this “BOMB”. I am concerned and worried that a person like Mr. Wigneswaran has also taken up this type of “CHEAP” and “HOLLOW” attacks on the Sinhala Buddhist Community. No wonder, POLITICS make even the once respectable people to be SCOUNDRELS.

    • 2
      3

      “I am concerned and worried that a person like Mr. Wigneswaran has also taken up this type of “CHEAP” and “HOLLOW” attacks on the Sinhala Buddhist Community. “

      What makes you think what Justice Wigneswaren said about re-writing Sri Lankan history is anyway an attack on “Sinhala Buddhist Community”? Please elaborate.

  • 7
    1

    C.Wijeyawickrama’s excrement is good for Lanka web as I treat that as the biggest open toilet meant for gutter journalism but CT musn’t let a racist clown like Wijeyawickrama to defecate in this forum intended for civilised people.

  • 0
    3

    Chandra: The views expressed by way of comments by Lorenzo are NOT what Lanka Web stands for. You also identify this person as Fathima. I do not know who he is or who they are. If you read the submissions by various contributors, you will no doubt see varying views expressed; just as much as CT is publishing. In like manner comments are varying, as you see here. In my opinion, both web sites must be appreciated for the independence maintained. I know, Lorenzo describes CT as an arm of the LTTE and just because he/she (Lorenzo) says it, we know how these sites work and allow all to discuss, argue, agree and disagree, provided you keep you keep comments within the policy guide lines.

    So please don’t judge Lanka Web by the comments contributed by Lorenzo or Fathima.

    • 2
      1

      Douglas,
      I have seen the comments of late at LW especially from the likes of Fathima (aka Lorenzo)- He has been identified and confirmed. I was a major contributor to LW until April last year and more recently i noticed many more have stopped

      The greatest weakness at LW is the readiness to believe what is being uttered ignoring all the truth and that suits the audience. They even label such a persons as patriots. This is the new concept of patriotism of SL. Any one who hides the truth and play to the gallery is a patriot while the one who speaks the truth is a traitor and if he happened to be a Tamil then a kottiya or a separatist.
      Good luck Douglas in exposing the hidden agendas

  • 4
    0

    Ceylone has an ancient culture that every citizen should be proud of. But unfortunately what the Mahavamsa has done is to alter the time line and distort the history of this country in a way that makes us all have amnesia about our own past. I wish the so called moda sinhalyas wake up and realize what it is that they are trying to defend and that is is not worth defending for it is a lie. For example Buddhism in Sri Lanka goes back much deeper into history than what is stated in the Mahavamsa. Admitting that the Mahavamsa is flawed only increases the rich Buddhist history of this country. But these narrow minded fools cannot see thru the mist.

  • 1
    2

    C. Wijeyawickrema says that
    “SS should know that the real purpose of offering flowers is to remind people that life is temporary like the flowers are temporary”.

    I wonder whether these foolish Sinhala Buddhists realise that flowers are temporary. Do they really have to offer flowers to remind them of this reality. I found that these blindly religious people are the ones who are unaware of this reality.

    • 2
      1

      Patriot,

      “I wonder whether these foolish Sinhala Buddhists realise that flowers are temporary. Do they really have to offer flowers to remind them of this reality”.

      This is exactly what Sharmini has asked Prof. Kapila Obeyawansa, in her open letter to him on CT.

  • 3
    0

    Mahawamsa, to create ill feeling against Tamils, by portraying them as aliens……Wigneswaran warned that, if the country’s distorted history is continued to be taught in schools, trouble will inevitably ensue.

    I am a mixed breed Tamil/Sinhalese who studied in the Sinhalese medium. I still recall the Govt History book in Grade 5 which named Dutugemunus father as Kavantissa. The teacher first explained that meaning of Kavantissa’s name was Kaha (Yellow) Tissa because he was an light skinned Aryan.

    Then the teacher went on to point me out and say I was dark skinned because I was Elaras descendant. Somehow it did not seem to matter that I was many shades lighter (because of European admixture).

    Many years later reading the Mahavamsa I found that Kahavantissa was really Kakkavanna Tissa, i.e. Crow Colored (Black) Tissa.

    Even educated authors like Colin de Silva in his Winds of Sinhala starts his book about Kahavan Tissa the Golden Aryan. Lost my copy of the book so cannot quote the exact words.

    Like M. Sivanathan says, the Mahavamsa is about the Kings, not really about the average Joe. Like the Doomsday Book in England.

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    Wigneswaran and Sharmini are anti-Sinhala racists.

    One tries to rewrite SL history while the other finds SL history hurtful!

    Too bad.

    No wonder Tamils [Edited out]

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    Every one is busy attacking the messenger. None seem to be attacking the message. Calling names and insulting the person but none explain why it is so.
    They may not like what Mr.Wijewickrama is saying but the purpose of commenting is to say why instead goes on to praise SS for being an academic and a wise lady while at the same time claim that CT is for the wise and educated.

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    Could we lay to rest this Buddhist stories, the whole world knows that it is nothing but lies that Buddha visited 3 times LOL

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      Would you mind telling us how you know that Buddha’s visits were a lie.

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    WIGNESWARAN, A HINDU, is co-operating with the Evangelical Church to Christianize Sri Lanka.

    IF that Happens, christians will gain ground in Tamilnadu. where , at present Tamil – christians are DALITs.

    I don’t think christians like this Article at all.

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      Don’t worry abut the Christains, we will take care of them !

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      Jim Softy,

      Are you a disgruntled Christian?

      Don’t worry, we will ensure that you are not re-converted to a Christian.

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    I now read a badly written (rather atrocious illogical arguments/reasons) article by C Wije at LW justifying the actions of BBS in attacking religious places of worship.

    It is disappointing to witness C Wije keep shooting himself in the foot repetitively.

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    thanks for the good balanced article. please keep on writing.

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    As responsible leaders, not only the government and the opposition but the moderate Sinhala media personnel, educated and intelligent Sinhalese people and moderate religious leaders/Buddhist clergy should educate the people to think rationally and distinguish/differentiate Buddhism from Sinhala-Buddhism, and Myths from Facts, explaining the reason why the Pali chronicles were written during that period of extreme danger to Buddhism.

    During that turbulent period when Buddhism was under threat, the Mahavamsa author Ven. Mahanama and the Mahavihara monks had a genuine reason for the above mythology but unfortunately today due to ignorance and lack of rational thinking, some Buddhists still believe the Mahavamsa as the gospel truth.

    Tamil Nadu boasted of outstanding Buddhist monks, who had made remarkable contributions to Buddhism thought and learning. Three of the greatest Pali scholars of this period were Buddhaghosa, Buddhadatta, and Dhammapala and all three of them were associated with Buddhist establishments in the Tamil kingdoms.

    Buddhadatta or Thera Buddhaatta as he is called lived during the time of Accyutarikkanta, the Kalabra ruler of the Chola-Nadu. He was a senior contemporary of Buddhaghosa. He was born in the Cola kingdom and lived in the 5th Century AD. Under the patronage of this ruler, Buddhadatta wrote many books. Among his best known Pali writings are the VINAYA-VINICCHAYA, the UTTARA-VINICCHAYA and the JINALANKARA-KAVYA. Among the commentaries written by him are the MADHURATTHA-VILASINI and the ABHIDHAMMAVATARA. In the Abhidhammaratara he gives a glowing account at Kaveripattinum, Uragapuram, Bhutamangalam and Kanchipuram and the Mahavihara at Sri Lanka. While he was at Sri Lanka, he composed many Buddhist works such as Uttara-viniccaya Ruparupa Vibhaga Jinalankara etc. Buddhaghosha, contemporary of Buddhadatta also composed many Buddhist commentaries.

    Buddhaghosha is a Tamil monk, who made a remarkable contribution to Buddhism in Sri Lanka. He stayed and studied Buddhist precepts at Mahavihara in Anuradhapura. The Visuddhimagga was the first work of Buddhaghosha which was written while he was in Sri Lanka.

    After Buddhaghosha, the important Theravada monk from the Tamil Nadu was Dhammapala. Dhammapala lived in the Mahavihara at Anuradhapura. He composed paramathadipani which was a commentary on Buddhaghosha s work on Khuddaka Nikaya and Paramathamanjusa, which was a commentary on Buddhaghosha’s Visuddhimagga. A close study of the three Buddhist monks viz Buddhadatta, Buddhaghosha and Dhammapala shows that Tamil Buddhists were closely associated with the Sri Lankan Buddhists around the 5th century AD.

    The author of NETTIPAKARANA is another Dhammapala who was a resident of a monastery in Nagapattinam. One more example is the Chola monk Kassapa, in his Pali work, VIMATTI-VINODANI, this Tamil monk provides interesting information about the rise of heretical views in the Chola Sangha and the consequent purification that took place.

    There are so many other Tamil monks who are attributed to the Pali works some of them were resident at Mayura-rupa-pattana (Mylapore) along with Buddhagosha. The well known Tamil Buddhist epics, on the other hand, were MANIMEKALAI and KUNDALAKESI.

    The 6th century Tamil Buddhist work Manimekalai by Sattanar, is perhaps the most famous of the work done in Tamil Nadu. It is a work expounding the doctrines and propagating the values of Buddhism. The interaction between Tamil Nadu and Sri Lankan monks finds mention in Manimekalai, which is set in the Tamil towns of Kaveripoompattinam, Kanchi, and Vanchi.

    There is mention about the presence of wondering monks of Sri Lanka in Vanchi, which was the capital of the Chera Kings of Tamil Nadu. The Chinese traveller, Tsuan Tsang, wrote that there were around 300 Sri Lankan monks in the monastery at the Southern sector of Kanchipuram.

    As Buddhism was one of the dominant religions in both Tamil Nadu and Sri Lanka, naturally there were very close relations between the two regions. The monks from Sri Lanka, too, went across to the Tamil kingdom and stayed in the monasteries.

    There was NO Buddhism in Sri Lanka until Emperor Asoka’s missionary monks led by Mahinda converted the Hindu Naga King Tissa into a Buddhist in the 2nd century BC. Similarly, there was NO Sinhala race/tribe in Sri Lanka until the Mahavihara monks created it in the 5th century AD. When Hindu/Brahmanical influence posed a serious challenge to Buddhism and when Buddhism started to lose popular support and the patronage from the rulers, the Buddhist institutions in India came under attack. The Mahavihara monks of Anuradapura including Ven. Mahanama, the author of the Pali chronicle Mahavamsa and a close relative of the Buddhist Naga king Dhatusena witnessed the decline and disorientation of Buddhism in India. Events that took place in India against Buddhism prompted the Mahavihara monks in Sri Lanka to come up with a strategy to protect Buddhism. Due to their strong devotion to Buddhism and desire to consolidate and protect this religion in Sri Lanka they have decided to write the Pali chronicles Deepavamsa/Mahavamsa making Sri Lanka a Dammadeepa – chosen land of Buddha where Buddhism will prevail for 5000 years) and creating the Sinhala race by integrating all the Buddhists from different tribes/ethnic groups into one race and making them the sustainers of Buddhism (Gautama Buddha’s chosen people) to protect Buddhism in Sri Lanka for 5000 years until the next Maithriya Buddha arrive. With the patronage of the Buddhist Kings, it is the Mahavihara monks who assimilated all the Buddhists from many different tribes together and called them Sihala. There is NO historical evidence what so ever to prove Vijaya’s arrival with 700 men or to say there were Sinhalese during the Early Historic period. The term ‘Sihala’ itself first appeared ONLY in the 5th Century AD Pali chronicles Deepavamsa/Mahavamsa and that also ONLY twice in the beginning chapters. To date, no archaeological evidence has been found to prove ‘Hela’ or ‘Sihala’ or ‘Sinhala’ existed before that or anything about Vijaya’s arrival.

    Only the Mahavamsa Tika that was composed very much later to interpret the Mahavamsa, mentions that it was adopted from the mysterycal ‘Vamsa texts’ known as ‘Sihala Atthakatha’ (collection of Sinhala verbal stories). Very strangely, most of the mythical/supernatural stories from the so called ‘Sihala Atthakatha Vamsa texts’ are very similar to those found in the Indian Epics and Puranas such as the Mahabaratha/Ramayana. Ultimately, the Mahavamsa has transformed the Buddha into a special patron of Sinhala-Buddhism, an ethnic religion created in Sri Lanka.

    The Buddhism practiced in Sri Lanka is different from the Theravada Buddhism practiced in other countries such as Thailand, Cambodia and so on. The Buddhists in these countries follow only the Buddhist scriptures Tripitaka (Viniya, Sutta, Abhidhamma), whereas in Sri Lanka the ‘Mahavamsa,’ which was written by one of the Mahavihara monks (Ven. Mahanama) more than 1000 years after the passing away of Lord Buddha is also considered as a part of the Buddhist scriptures.

    Although it deals mostly with mythical or supernatural Buddhist history, some episodes of which are copied from the ‘Mahabaratha’ and ‘Ramayana.’ Since the Buddhist scriptures (Tripitaka) and the mythical Buddhist history (Mahavamsa) were both written in the Pali language, a Buddhist layperson who does not understand Pali cannot understand the difference between the two and, therefore, he/she believes everything that the Buddhist monks preach, to be the true words of Buddha.

    Due to ignorance, even the present day some Sri Lankans still believe that they are blood relatives of Buddha because, according to the Mahavamsa, their forefather Pandu-Vasudeva belongs to the Sakya clan, and is a relative of the Buddha where as the historians believe that the term ‘Pandu’ in Pali means Pandyans.

    According to Buddhism, a person ordained as a Bikkhu should practice Ahimsa (non-violence), Karuna (compassion), Metta (affection), and Maithriya (loving-kindness) towards fellow humans, (irrespective of race or religion), not only by words but also in his thoughts and action.

    There are enough of ancient archaeological evidence in Sri Lanka such as Brahmi stone inscriptions, cave writings, Pali chronicles, etc where the terms ‘Dameda’, ‘Damela’, ‘Damila’, ‘Demel’ are mentioned as a group of people living in the island. Even in the Jataka stories such as Akitti Jataka, there is a reference to Tamil country (Damila-rattha), where as there is NO evidence what so ever about the terms ‘Hela’, ‘Sihala’, ‘Sinhala’ before and even a few centuries after the Pali chronicles were written. Even the Mahavamsa says, the missionary monk Mahinda Maha Thero preached Buddhism to the people of the island in Deepa basa (language of the island) but it does not say that the deepa basa was ‘Elu’ or ‘Helu’ or ‘Sihala’.

    Some scholars argue that the ethnic name of the dominant group does not occur in these records for the very good reason that there is no need to distinguish any person by referring to him/her as such when the people as a whole are entitled to that name (Sihala). This argument could have been accepted if the terms ‘Hela’, ‘Sihala’, ‘Sinhala’ was found at least somewhere outside Sri Lanka such as in any of the ancient literary works and/or the stone inscriptions/rock edicts of neighbouring India (either South or North) that was always associated with the island’s history, but unfortunately nothing has been found until now.

    The kingdoms of Anuradapura and Polonnaruwa were NEVER known as Sinhala kingdoms and the Naga kings who ruled these kingdoms never called themselves ‘Hela’, ‘Sihala’, or ‘Sinhala’. Subsequent to the Chola domination of Sri Lanka in the 10th century A.D, people who identified themselves as Buddhists and Sinhalese shifted their seats of rule from the ancient kingdoms of Anuradapura and Polanaruwa towards South and Central of the island. It was only after the 13th century AD that the kingdoms of Kotte and Kandy were known as ‘Sinhale’ even though some parts in North and East also came under the Kandyan rule but Kandy was mostly ruled by the Kalingas of South-East India and the Nayakkars of South India.

    The term ‘Sinhale’, appeared only in the 13th Century AD Chulavamsa and NOT in Deepavamsa/Mahavamsa. In the 16th century, the Portuguese and in the 18th century, the Dutch who occupied the island brought in tens of thousands of people from South India (presently Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Andara) and settled them in the Southern parts of the island as menial labourers (for growing/peeling cinnamon, growing tobaco, pearl diving, coconut planting/plucking, toddy tapping, and for many other jobs).

    Within a few centuries, the Sinhala population increased exponentially when these people assimilated with the local Sinhala population by adopting the Sinhala language and the Buddhist religion. Today their decedents (6th generation) are not only claiming the ancient Sri Lankan civilization as their own ‘Sinhala’ heritage but have also become the patriots and champions of Sinhala-Buddhism.

    It was the British who re-discovered the Mahavamsa in the early 20th century and their so called European ‘Pali Scholars’ misinterpreted it, thereby creating another myth known as Arya-Sinhala. Since the Sinhala (Elu) language (mixture of Sanskrit, Pali, Tamil and Malayalam) was more of Indo-Aryan in nature, the British declared that the Sinhalese were Aryans from North India and the Tamils were Dravidians from South India.

    It is said in MAHAVAMSA CHAPTER VII – THE CONSECRATING OF VIJAYA, “But the king Sihabahu, since he had slain the lion (was called) Sihala and, by reason of the ties between him and them, all those (followers of VIJAYA) were also (called) Sihala.”

    If Sihabahu whose father had slain the lion was called Sihala and his eldest son Vijaya and his followers were also called Sihala, then what about Vijaya’s twin brother Sumitta and his followers in Sinhapura, India? Why they were not called Sihala? That itself proves that Vijaya and the Sinhala race was a creation of Ven. Mahanama and the Mahavihara monks.

    Another good example of the myths, fantasies, superstitions and fables from the Mahavamsa is the Elara/Dutugemunu episode. Just around ten lines/verses in the Pali chronicle Deepavamsa about the Elara/Dutugemunu was blown up into 11 chapters in the Mahavamsa just to glorify Buddhism and the Buddhist kings against the Hindus which gave birth to “superior race”, “Bhoomiputhra (sons of the soil)”, “Sinhaladivpa” “unitary state” and “Dhammadivpa” theories. The Mahavamsa author being a Buddhist monk and justifying the killing of around sixty thousand Tamils/Hindus (aka invaders) by Dutugemunu is one reason why others (non-Buddhists) think that Sinhala-Buddhism is somewhat of a violent barbaric form of Buddhism where killing Tamils is justified. The Mahavamsa equates the killing of the invaders as being on par with the killing of “sinners and wild beasts”, and the King’s sorrow and regret are assuaged. This is considered by some critics as an ethical error. However, Buddhism does recognize a hierarchy of actions as being more or less wholesome or skillful, although the intent is as much as or more important than the action itself. Thus the killing of an Arahant may be considered less wholesome and skillful than the killing of an ordinary human being. Buddhists may also assert that killing an elephant is less skillful and wholesome than killing an ant. In both cases, however, the intent must also be considered. An important thing to note is that Dutthagamani regretted his act, and this was also true of King Asoka, who became a pacifist after a series of bloody military campaigns.

    There is a clear record of all the main events of Buddha, the places he visited, with whom he was, where and what he preached and to whom he preached, in the Buddhist scriptures Tripitika, but nowhere it is mentioned that the Buddha visited or even spoke about the island of Lanka. In order to protect Buddhism in Sri Lanka from those powerful South Indian Hindu kingdoms, Ven. Mahanama wrote the Mahavamsa, by added his own imaginations and myths. He has introduced many events concerning Buddha which never took place, things that Buddha has never said or done, events which are not mentioned in any of the Buddhist scriptures (both Theravada and Mahayana).

    For example, according to the Mahavamsa, Buddha made three magical trips to Sri Lanka, each time colonizing another area of the island, in preparation for the formal introduction of Buddhism two centuries after his death. One of these trips was to settle a dispute between the Yakkhas and Nagas at Naga Divipa (Ninathivu) where the Buddha tamed the Yakkhas, the non-human inhabitants of the island.

    There is no evidence whatsoever to support this claim (Buddha’s 3 visits), other than the three chaithiyas (Buddhist structures) built in the recent past at 3 different locations to say, ‘This is where Buddha came.’ Even the footprint of Buddha at Sri Pada (Adam’s peak) is nothing but an obvious myth.

    According to the Mahavamsa, just before passing away, Buddha has called the Sakka (King of Gods) and told him,

    ‘My doctrine, O Sakka, will eventually be established in the Island of Lanka, and on this day, Vijay the eldest son of Singha Bahu king of Sinhapura in the Lata country lands there with 700 followers and will assume sovereignty there. Do thou, therefore guard well the prince and his train and the Island of Lanka. On receiving the blessed one’s command, Sakka summoned God Vishnu and said, ‘Do thou. O lotus-hued one, protect with zeal prince Vijay and his followers and the doctrine that is to endure in Lanka for a full five thousand years’.

    It should be noted that in Buddhist scriptures, Buddha has never mentioned about any Hindu/Brahmanical Gods, he only talks about Devas and Bramahas from different worlds who have no connection with any Hindu/Brahmanical Gods.

    Ven. Mahanama has created an imaginary link between the three elements, Country-Race-Religion and made it into one unit similar to the Holy Trinity, whereby Sri Lanka (Dhamma Deepa), Buddha’s chosen people (Sinhalese), and Buddhism (Buddha Sasana) should be protected for 5000 years. This is known as the Jathika chintanaya or the Mahavamsa mindset.

    What we witness today is a kind of political Buddhists trying to promote their interest rather than Buddhism as a path for personal salvation.

    Ven Mahanama, the author of the Mahavamsa refers to three visits by the Gautama Buddha to Sri Lanka. To ascertain whether the description in the Mahavamsa has any basis, one has to study the life of the Gautama Buddha, as revealed in the Pali Canon.
    Immediately after Enlightenment, the Gautama Buddha walked from Bodh Gaya to Sarnath. From Sarnath, He set out to wander by stages to Uruvela. At that time three ascetics with matted hair — Kassapa of Uruvela, Kassapa of the River and Kassapa of Gaya — were living at Uruvela. When the Gautama Buddha was living at Uruvela, Kassapa’s sacrificial ceremony fell due.
    The Mahavamsa says, “Now, since a great sacrifice by Kassapa of Uruvela was near at hand, and since He (the Gautama Buddha) saw that this latter would fain have Him away .., the Conqueror in the ninth month of his Buddhahood, at the full moon of Phussa, Himself set forth for the Isle of Lanka…
    “To this great gathering of the Yakkas went the Blessed One and there in the midst of that assembly, hovering in the AIR over their heads, at the place of the future Mahiyangana Thupa, He struck terror to their hearts, by rain, storm, darkness and so forth. The Yakkas, overwhelmed by fear, besought the fearless Vanquisher to release them from fear. Then, when He had destroyed their terror,… the Master preached them the doctrine.”
    The suttas display the Gautama Buddha, as the incarnation of patience and peace, capable of working the miracle of transformation by His unshakeable equanimity and impeccable wisdom.
    The Gautama Buddha would never have struck terror to their hearts. This idea that the Gautama Buddha struck terror to their hearts by rain, storm and darkness, Mahanama has taken directly from the Vedas. The Vedas tell us that Indra wields the thunderbolt and conquers darkness. He brings us light and life, gives us vigour and freshness. Heaven bows before him and the earth trembles at his approach “Yes, when I send thunder and lightning” says Indra “then you believe, in me.”
    According to the Mahavamsa’s description of the first visit of the Gautama Buddha to Lanka, the visit should take place between the sacrificial ceremony and the deliverance of the fire sermon at Gayassi.
    The Mahavamsa says the Gautama Buddha came by AIR to Lanka. The description of the first visit of the Gautama Buddha goes against the fundamental teachings of the Gautama Buddha. In Mahasihanada Sutta (Majjhima Nikaya 12) Sunakkata made this statement before the vesali assembly: “The recluse Gautama does not have any superhuman states, any distinction in knowledge and vision worthy of the noble ones. The recluse Gautama teaches a Dhamma hammered out by reasoning, following his own line of reasoning as it occurs to him, and when he teaches the Dhamma to anyone, it leads when he practices it to the complete destruction of suffering”.
    Bhikku Bodhi in his commentary to this sutta says “Apparently he (Sunakkhatta) believes that being led to the complete destruction of suffering is, as a goal, inferior to the acquisition of miraculous powers”. In His rebuttal of Sunkattha’s assertion the Gautama Buddha says “the recluse Gautama teaches a Dhamma hammered out by reasoning, following His own line of reasoning as it occurs to Him-Unless He abandons that view, then he will wind up in hell”.
    In the Kevaddha Sutta, The Gautama Buddha says, He dislikes, rejects and despises the miracles of psychic power and miracle of telepathy. The Gautama Buddha was possessed of a quality of compassion, seldom seen among men. His sympathy was all embracing and spontaneous. The Gautama Buddha’s teaching is based and built on a conception of universal love and compassion for all living beings.
    In the Vatthupama Sutta (Majjhima Nikaya 7) the Gautama Buddha says, “he abides pervading that all-encompassing world with a mind imbued with loving kindness, abundant, exalted immeasurable, without hostility, without ill will. He abides pervading one quarter with the mind imbued with compassion.”
    “In the Lakkahan Sutta (Digha Nikaya Sutta 30) it is stated, “the Tathagata rejects harsh speech, abstains from it, spoke what was blameless, pleasing to the ear, agreeable, reaching the heart, urbane, pleasing and attractive to the multitude.”
    Therefore, if the Mahavamsa is to be believed, when Mahanama says, “He struck terror to their hearts by rain, darkness and so forth. The Yakkas overwhelmed by fear… we have to accept that the Gautama Buddha abandoned the fundamental tenets of the Dhamma merely for the sake of converting a set of ‘uninstructed wordings.’ He was, of all the historical personages of whom we possess any knowledge, one of the most consistent in thought, word and act.
    He not only placed little value on the supra-rational knowledge and ecstasy to which ascetics and mystics were supposed to have access, but actually described their mental acrobatics as “the thicket of theorizing, the wilderness of theorizing, the tangle, the bondage.”

    The Mahavamsa goes on to say that it was on His first visit that the “Master preached the doctrine”. There is no record of the doctrine the Gautama Buddha preached to the Yakkas. However, there is a record of the two earlier sermons the Gautama Buddha delivered at Saranath.
    According to the Mahavamsa, the Gautama Buddha’s second visit to Lanka was in the fifth year of His Gautama Buddhahood “He set out to Lanka from Jetawana.” If the Mahavamsa account of the Gautama Buddha’s second visit is to be believed He should have come to Lanka before He left for Kapilavasthu.
    In His second visit, the Mahavamsa says the Gautama Buddha brought about a reconciliation between the Naga kind Maniakkhika and Mahodora by preaching the “the doctrine that begets concord.” King Pasanedi was one of the most devoted lay followers of the Gautama Buddha. Pasanedi says “The dhamma has been made clear in many ways by the Blessed One, as though He were turning upright what had been turned upside down. (vide Kosalaamyutta in the Samyuta Nikaya.)
    Yet the Gautama Buddha was not able to prevent King Pasanedi going into battle with Ajasathu. In the Paranibbana Sutta we find Ajasattu sending his chief minister Brahamin Vessakara to the Gautama Buddha to seek advice as to how he could attack the Vajians and bring them to ruin and destruction. The Gautama Buddha told him, “the Vajians will never be conquered by force of arms.” Still the Gautama Buddha was not able to dissuade Ajasatu resorting to various stratagems to destroy the Vajians.
    It is strange therefore, that while the Gautama Buddha was not able to prevent His disciples from waging wars, He could bring about reconciliation between two kings in a foreign country.
    The doctrine that “begot concord” is not found anywhere in the Pali Canon. It is also strange that this doctrine was not delivered to Kings Pasanedi or Ajasatu and thereby dissuade them from going to war.
    According to the Mahavamsa, the third visit of the Gautama Buddha to Lanka was in the eighth year of His Gautama Buddhahood.
    The Gautama Buddha “set forth surrounded by five hundred arahats on the second day of the beautiful month of Vesak..” Again the doctrine He preached on His third visit to the island is not found in the Pali Canon. The Gautama Buddha’s famous statement in the Paranibbana Sutta, “I have taught the Dhamma, Ananda, making no inner and outer. The Tathagata has no teacher’s fist in respect of the Dhamma,” makes it clear that there is no esoteric teaching in Buddhism.
    On a plain reading of the Gautama Buddha visits to Lanka as recorded in the Mahavamsa, it becomes clear that this account is not only false but goes against the teachings of the Gautama Buddha.
    It is also established that from the day of His enlightenment till He passed away at Kusinara, the Gautama Buddha walked barefoot from Gautama Buddha Gaya to Kusinara. At the little village of Beluva the Gautama Buddha said (Paranibbana Sutta), “Ananda, I am now old, worn out, one who has traversed life’s path, I have reached the term of life which is eighty.” The version in the Mahavamsa that the Gautama Buddha came by air from Jetawana to Lanka should be rejected.
    One other matter that should be considered in delving into the veracity of the Gautama Buddha’s visit as narrated in the Mahavamsa is that there was an intellectual awakening in India about a thousand years before the Gautama Buddha. Therefore, we find in India at the time of the Gautama Buddha’s birth the tendency of man to think rationally, to reduce the chaotic universe of his sense-impressions and intuitions to a coherent and logical order, was ingrained in the Indian mind. The Gautama Buddha tore away the Dhamma from His ancestral stem and planted in a purely rational soil.
    Even in such an intellectually fertile soil as in India in the 5th century B.C, soon after enlightenment the Gautama Buddha experienced an inner conflict as to whether He should ever teach the Dhamma because, in the words of Bhikku Bodhi, “He reflected the density of the defilements of beings and the profundity of the Dhamma. In the Brahmasamayutta in the Samyutta Nikkaya we find the following statement, “This Dhamma I have discovered is deep, hard to see, hard to understand, peaceful and sublime, not within the sphere of reasoning, subtle, to be experienced by the wise.”
    While there is a record of the very first sutta preached to five ascetics, we do not find in the Pali Canon any reference to the three discourses delivered to the Nagas and Yakkas.
    Mahavamsa is a conscious and intentional rearrangement of the Dipavamsa as a sort of commentary to this latter. In the absence of any sources, the Dipavamsa must be considered as standing unsupported on its own tottering feet. Therefore no historical value can be conceded to the Dipavamsa nor to the Mahavamsa.
    The account given in the Mahavamsa has no historical evidence to support the proposition that the Gautama Buddha ever visited Sri Lanka. Ignorance is the first requisite of the historian. Ignorance simplifies and clarifies, selects and limits, with a placid perfection unattainable by the highest art.

    Millions of people for thousands of years believed that the earth was flat. And also millions of people believed the following in the seventh chapter of Mahawamsa for hundreds of years :
    Vijaya’s arrival in Sri Lanka coincided with the passing away of the Buddha. The very first ‘person’ that Vijaya encountered on the island was the ‘Lord of the Gods’, Lord Vishnu, who was charged by the ailing Buddha with looking after Vijaya and his descendants.
    The second encounter was far less auspicious – a Yakkinni, or demoness, who ‘appeared in the form of a dog’. Vijaya’s men, surmising that ‘Only where there is a village are dogs to be found’, followed the creature, only to come upon the Queen of the demons, Kuveni. Though the protection of Vishnu prevented Kuveni from devouring the hapless man, it did not prevent her from hurling him – and all of Vijaya’s other companions – into a chasm.

    Vijaya eventually comes upon Kuveni and threatens her with death unless she releases his men. When this is done, Kuveni supplies them with food and clothing, and, ‘assuming the lovely form of a sixteen year old maiden’ seduces Vijaya. Then, in a complete reversal of her allegiances, she states that she ‘will bestow Kingship on my Lord Vijaya’ and thus ‘all the Yakkhas must be slain, for else the Yakkhas will slay me, for it was through me that men have taken up their dwelling (in Sri Lanka)’. This Vijaya goes on to do, vanquishing the demons and driving them from the island, all the time with Kuveni at his side.
    Though Kuveni bears him two children, a son and a daughter, Vijaya eventually rejects her with the words ‘Go now, dear one, leaving the two children behind; men are ever in fear of superhuman beings’. Despite begging Vijaya not to send her away, a heart broken Kuveni eventually leaves the palace, taking the two children despite being ordered not to. Arriving in one of the few surviving Yakka cities she is killed by her own people for her betrayal. One of her uncles takes pity on her children and tells them to flee before they, too, are killed. They eventually flee to Malaya rata where they settle and become the ancestors of the Pulindas. And alternative tale is that Kuveni flung herself from Yakdessa Gala, imploring the Gods to curse Vijaya for his cruelty – which they do by preventing any of Vijaya’s children from ever sitting on the throne of Rajarata.
    The Kuveni-Vijaya story evokes some similarities with the encounter of Odysseus with Circe. Circe is also an enchantress and a witch. The Kuveni myth is also remarkable for being so violent and tragic. Both the demon Queen and Vijaya are portrayed as being deeply treacherous and unfeeling – Queen in betraying her entire people, Vijaya in betraying her in turn so callously. Indeed Vijaya’s reason for rejecting Kuveni is his desire for a ‘a maiden of a noble house’ to be consecrated Queen with him. This desire could have had a political aspect – in marrying a princess of an established noble house he would essentially have established himself as a legitimate monarch in his own right, on a par with the other rulers of the subcontinent’s kingdoms.
    Kuveni, on the other hand, is regarded as a descendant of the demons of the Ramayana and of Ravana, who also dwelled in Sri Lanka. A common folk tale was that her children did not, in fact, flee to Malaysia, but instead remained in Sri Lanka’s jungles and became the Veddas – Sri Lanka’s aboriginal population. This may indeed be the explanation for Kuveni and her people, as early Indian settlers would almost certainly have come into contact and conflict with indigenous Sri Lankans. The Yakkas are referred to occasionally as ‘invisible’, and indeed would have appeared so to the newcomers unused to Sri Lanka’s jungles, through which the Veddas even today can move in near-silence and with barely a trace. Interestingly the Dipavamsa, on which the Mahavamsa is based, makes no mention of Kuveni whatsoever.
    In the Mahavamsa, or in the ancient Pali or Sanskrit literature for that matter, the Nagas are never represented as human beings, but as a super natural being that inhabited a subterranean world, whose natural form was a serpent but who would assume any form at will.

    BTW Ceylon Lion – Panthera leo sinhaleyus is only known from two teeth found in deposits at Kuruwita in Ratnapura District. Based on these two teeth, a well known naturalist Mr P.E.P.Deraniyagala erected Panthera leo sinhaleyus in 1939. Mr Deraniyagala did not explain explicitly how he diagnosed the holotype of this prehistoric subspecies as belonging to a lion, though he justified its allocation to a distinct prehistoric subspecies of lion by its being “narrower and more elongate” than those of recent lions in the British Natural History Museum collection. According to Mr Deraniyagala, Panthera leo sinhaleyus was endemic to Sri Lanka, became extinct prior to the arrival of culturally modern humans about 40,000 years ago. There is insufficient information to determine how it might differ from other subspecies of lion. Further studies would be necessary because it is extremely difficult to differentiate a canine tooth of similar species of animals. Even the Ratnapura rainforest habitat is most suited for tigers than lions.
    In 1982 a sub-fossil right middle phalanx was found in a 17,000 years old prehistoric midden at Batadoma in Ratnapura District and tentatively considered to be of a tiger. Tigers arrived in Sri Lanka during a pluvial period during which sea levels were depressed, evidently prior to the last glacial maximum about 20,000 years ago. Since Sri Lanka was separated from the Indian subcontinent by rising sea levels in the early Holocene, now there are no tigers in Sri Lanka.
    A leopard subspecies – Panthera Pardus Kotiya is native to Sri Lanka and it is the country’s TOP predator. The correct Sinhala term for leopard is Kotiyā .
    The term Diviyā was in use for centuries in Sri Lanka to refer to smaller wild species of the cat family such as Handun Diviyā or Kola Diviyā. The correct Sinhala word for tiger is Viyagraya. Mistakenly we started to use Kotiyā to mean tiger and Diviyā to mean leopard.
    To complicate and confuse the matters , Tigers led by Veluppillai Prabhakaran who were also known as Koti (the plural form of Kotiyā) – once ranged widely across Northern and Eastern Sri Lanka, now extirpated from Sri Lanka. Since we do not have lions or tigers in Sri Lanka we should have Kotiyā in our national flag and not lion or tiger.

    I know truth hurts….

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