14 December, 2018

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New Constitution: State, Religion & Buddhism

By Mass L. Usuf

Mass L. Usuf

Mass L. Usuf

Critical Evaluation And Democratisation Of Article (9) – Part II – 

Buddhism, Religion Or Not?

Article 9: “The Republic of Sri Lanka shall give to Buddhism the foremost place and accordingly it shall be the duty of the State to protect and foster the Buddha Sasana, while assuring to all religions the rights granted by Articles 10 and 14(1)(e).”

There is a vague and ambiguous reference to one word in Article 9, namely, ‘Buddhism’ in contradistinction to ‘religion’. It is vague because it is not clear if Buddhism is used here synonymous with religion. This lack of clarity creates ambiguity in its definition. Simply put, as per Article 9 is Buddhism a religion or not?

The concern is that there is neither an interpretation clause nor an explanation in the constitution on this word. The legislators apparently would have relied upon the popular or customary understanding that Buddhism is a religion. The Sinhala word used commonly is buddhagama possibly influenced by Christianity, Islam and Hinduism which are religions and referred to as ‘agama’ in the Sinhala language. ‘Agama’ means religion. It is suspect if this assumption or understanding in relation to Buddhism is correct.

When it comes to legal interpretation what would direct the judicial mind, is to be seen. The judiciary can take the plain text meaning or the intention of the author (legislature) or give a pragmatic interpretation based on the true meaning of Buddhism. The last of the three may find the judiciary being criticised for judicial law making. Some inspiration could be had from Lord Wilberforce in the Privy Council who adopted the approach treating the constitution as sui generis, calling for principles of interpretation of its own suitable to its character. (Minister of Home Affairs (Bermuda) vs. Fishers (1980).Maithripla Buddhist monks

In this context, the new constitution is a good opportunity for the framers to give thought to this without putting the judiciary on the spot. Since the constitution is the foundational law of the State its content in my view, should bear the essence of the thing that is being interpreted.

Apart from the lacuna in the constitution, the other factor that weakens the interpretation of Buddhism as a religion is in the strict definition of religion. The Oxford dictionary defines Religion as “the belief in and worship of a superhuman controlling power, especially a personal God or gods”. The Merriam-Webster states religion as “the belief in a god or in a group of gods”; “an organized system of beliefs, ceremonies, and rules used to worship a god or a group of gods”.

In addition, there is also no evidence that Gautama Buddha ever mentioned that his is a religious teaching. This position is substantiated by Mahathera Narada who explains that Buddhism is neither considered a religion nor a belief.

Buddhism is not strictly a religion in the sense in which that word is commonly understood, for it is not ‘a system of faith and worship,’ owing any allegiance to a supernatural god.” (Pg. 155, The Buddha and his teachings, Mahathera Narada).

In the book, ‘What the Buddha taught’ Walpola Rahula thero writes, “In Buddhism emphasis is laid on ‘seeing’, knowing, understanding, and not on faith, or belief. Gotama wandered about the valley of Ganges, meeting famous religious teachers, studying and following their systems and methods, and submitting himself to rigorous ascetic practices. They did not satisfy him. So he abandoned all traditional religions and their methods and went his own way” (Pg. 1).

So, the question whether Buddhism is a religion or not remains unanswered as far as the use of this word in the constitution is concerned.

Buddhists Discriminated

On the other hand, if Buddhism is not considered a religion but only as the dhamma of the Buddha, then one is faced with a different problem. The scope of Article 9 will be applicable narrowed down only to religions and not the dhamma. It states, “while assuring to all religions the rights granted by Articles 10 and 14(1)(e)”. Thereby denying the benefits of Article 9 to the Buddhists in so far as these two Articles are concerned.

Article 10: “Every person is entitled to freedom of thought, conscience and religion, including the freedom to have or to adopt a religion or belief of his choice.”

Article 14 (1) (e): “Every citizen is entitled to the freedom, either by himself or in association with others, and either in public or in private, to manifest his religion or belief in worship, observance, practice or teaching.”

The above two Articles do not make any direct reference to Buddhism but, in fact, contain references to religion. This situation is disadvantageous to the Buddhist citizens of Sri Lanka as the assurance that is given to all religions would not be applicable to Buddhism. This, then, would be unfair and discriminatory against the Buddhists. It would place the Buddhist citizens in an unequal status in relation to those of other religions.

The ‘Other’ Factor

Article 9, by explicitly naming “Buddhism” and giving it the ‘foremost place’, has automatically given way to two other premises:

  1. It has created the “Other” factor and,
  2. by positing Buddhism to the “foremost place”, obviously has stratified Buddhism, relegating other religions to a lower level or a subclass.

Irrespective of whether Buddhism is considered as a religion or not, Article 9 in effect has created a clear dichotomy which undermines the basic tenet of equality. The moment the ‘other’ factor comes into being it necessarily creates a distinction. Where a distinction is created it may have the potential to give way to discrimination especially, in a pluralistic society. Therefore, ensuring equality between the distinguished elements becomes significant in a democratic environment. This emphasis calls for greater circumspection when it is the constitution of the country in which not even the slightest semblance of inequality should have been pronounced.

Analysing the words ‘foremost place’ in Article 9, using the law of identity reveals the existence of an apparent contradiction.

Tanha And Nirvana

From the Buddha dhamma point of view, is the phrase, “foremost place”, a self-contradicting term or a misnomer? There is no principle claim in the Buddha dhamma itself, wanting a foremost place amongst all religions. On the contrary, what the dhamma very clearly and in unequivocal terms states is that the cause of suffering is craving (tanha).

It was King Asoka a convert to Buddhism, in about 250 BCE or 2250 years ago proceeded to establish a model for the relationship between state and religion that became predominant in the Theravada Buddhist world. (Asian Journal of Comparative Law, Volume 2, Issue 1 2007 Article 1. Buddhism, Human Rights and Constitutional Reform in Thailand).

In puritanical terms this artificial elevation is an innovation into the buddhistic teachings. And, is in conflict with the practice of Gautama Buddha who relinquished his royalty seeking the ultimate Enlightenment, Nirvana. This is exemplified in the Buddha’s words, “Uno loko atitto tanha daso,” which translates to ‘the world is insatiable, enslaved to craving (tanha)’. The beauty of the concept of tanha in the dhamma is that it applies to both the craving for existence and even non-existence. Even the desire to attain Nirvana would fall into this category of tanha if the idea of Nirvana is not properly understood. The Buddha has declared that the desire for things, no matter what they are, begets sorrow “tanhaya jayati soko”. Thus the dhamma aims at putting an end to all aspects of craving as it is the root of all suffering.

Desire Begets Sorrow

Well, in this context, it is difficult to understand the desire of some monks, who are expounding the same principles of dukkha to the layman, seeking to place Buddhism in the constitution or seeking to grant Buddhism the foremost place or wanting the protection of the sasana. Not only the monks but also the Buddhist laymen clamour for this. Are not all of the above demands considered as cravings according to the dhamma? Will not these cravings then be the cause of suffering to such people? The simple answer that the dhamma gives to these questions to my understanding is a resounding ‘yes’. This is clear as crystal. To seek the foremost place to Buddhism in my view, is not in harmony with the dhamma and undermines the efforts of the great teacher, Gautama Buddha.

Venerable Professor Dhammavihari writes as follows explaining maithrya, “This typically horizontal concept of love and respect for life whereby one holds oneself as a part of an integrated whole, without any secret pacts as chosen or privileged people, is the keynote of the Buddhist concept of maitri. It admits of no vertical gradations with special loyalties to one’s religion or one’s race. That is why we are free to call it universal loving kindness”. (12 Essays).

In the final instalment of this opinion, I propose to share my views on how to go forward harmoniously from the broader perspectives of reconciliation, co-existence and a brief look at comparative jurisprudence.

To be continued …….

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Latest comments

  • 15
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    Buddhism is not a religion because because a religion is based on a God or gods.

    Islam is not a religion because a religion is based on love and compassion.

    • 3
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      Religion is a English word.. Sinhalese word for Buddhism is “Buddha Agama” –> “Buddhagama”..
      Have you seen this dictionary meaning for religion “a particular system of faith and worship” ..
      Check the Hindu meaning of “Agama” in Wiki if need further clarification..

      • 2
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        Alahakoon

        //Religion is a English word.. Sinhalese word for Buddhism is “Buddha Agama” –> “Buddhagama”..//

        Even though Buddhism is a set of rules and a philosophy, that in itself does not make it a Religion, it is the After Life, Nibanana,Nirvana,and Rebirth beliefs that make it a Religion.

    • 3
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      An isolated opinion.

    • 1
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      For the reforms of the consitution, srilankens should work with germans. Germany too faced fierce wars. And the peoples were torn apart as we have been left to this date. We need to contact german high profile constitutional experts can guide lankens for sure.

      Like in the bible, Germany law and order systems, each every small issue to big are included. That is why it makes that strict. Be it poisonouing water or food stuff are being discussed in their systems in regional bezierks.. how they have to handle the drug problem or any other high crimes are read in their books.

      I dont think that the contacts being made by Mr Sirisena having paid a visit to Germany meeting with Bundekanzlerin Dr Merkel few months ago should be regarded as nothing. Germans can help srilanka in many ways than the UK or other countries do. Having lived in GERMANY for the last 30 years, I know what and how they make their plans in diverse arease.

    • 3
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      Socrates, You indirectly saying that Christianity is the only religion, can catagorised as a religion in this world, because they believe in Mighty God. So who said a religion is indefinetely based upon on God? Maybe that was European theoriticians interpretation about religion. God is a myth based on or made up of constant “Fear” in human mind. People in the early stages in this world worshiped natural forces and or anything difficult to understand like Sun,thunder,Fire,Huge Trees as super powers. And later on the Kings who did a great service to their people and or army commanders who saved country from enemies became Gods and people worship them as Gods.

      I’m not a christian or catholic. I think in Christianity those nature based forces contained into a one super force called “God” and that concept able to gather humans disorientate mind about “God” into a one certain point. That’s “Mighty God” concept. So even if the Jesus preach, people believe Mighty God. Does what Jesus preach void because of Mighty God? I think after Jesus this “Mighty God” concept added to Christianity to suit to above European theory. And if Mighty God created this world and control this world even today, I can’t see any use of what Jesus preach to the people in this world. Correct me if I’m wrong.

    • 1
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      Please don’t judge Islam by action of an ignorant few. Every religion has them.

      God is merciful.

      Allāhu Akbar!

      • 0
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        [Edited out]

  • 3
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    Mass L. Usuf

    RE:New Constitution: State, Religion & Buddhism

    //”Article 9: “The Republic of Sri Lanka shall give to Buddhism the foremost place and accordingly it shall be the duty of the State to protect and foster the Buddha Sasana, while assuring to all religions the rights granted by Articles 10 and 14(1)(e).”//

    Article 9: “The Republic of Sri Lanka shall give to Buddhism and Aristotelianism, the foremost place and accordingly it shall be the duty of the State to protect and foster the Buddha Sasana, while assuring to all religions the rights granted by Articles 10 and 14(1)(e).”

    What about “Religion is the Opium of the Masses” as per Carl Marx?

    Yes. It does not say Buddhism is a Religion, but categorizes as a religion along with the other Religions.Buddhists take it further. Buddha is made Divine, and worshiped.

    Q. //”Simply put, as per Article 9 is Buddhism a religion or not?”//

    Since Buddhism talks about After Life, just like the other religious beliefs, Buddhism is a Religion. So, this gives an opportunity for the Monks, Sanga, to show hegemony, and they cleverly introduced Sangha, as the Third Gem of the Triple Gem. What a Coup! Other Religions have done similar hegemonic transformations.

    However, Aristotelianism, does not talk about After life, only cause and effect, and is therefore a Philosophy, not a Religion.

    Aristotelianism (/ˌærᵻstəˈtiːliənᵻzəm/ arr-i-stə-tee-li-ə-niz-əm) is a tradition of philosophy that takes its defining inspiration from the work of Aristotle. The works of Aristotle were initially defended by the members of the Peripatetic school, and, later on, by the Neoplatonists, who produced many commentaries on Aristotle’s writings. In the Islamic world, the works of Aristotle were translated into Arabic, and under philosophers such as Al-Kindi, Al-Farabi, Avicenna, and Averroes, Aristotelianism became a major part of early Islamic philosophy.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aristotelianism

  • 9
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    Buddhists were persecuted for 500 years under the Potugese , Dutch , and the Brits . ‘ Never Again ‘ as the Jews say .
    The fact that they have to be protected by the State is irrevocable .

  • 7
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    Mr.Usuf

    It is an indisputable fact that Buddhists of Sri Lanka have been harassed , murdered , and their places of worship razed to the ground by successive invading armies for many centuries .The process still exists albeit in a more subtle form by way of coercion, inducement, and using political leverage . Of course Buddhists need state protection and patronage !!

  • 14
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    Nice. After this please write a beautiful intellectual piece on getting along harmoniously to all Muslims specially Sunni, Wahabi Muslims who FORCE their faith. Talk about the savagery of Islamic terrorists who use the Quran and hadiths.

    Also I’ll like to hear you argue against Malaysia which is only 60% Muslim which has declared and forces Islam as the official religion of multi ethnic multi religious Malaysia. In contrast 74% of Sri Lanka are still buddhists and a further 14% Hindu. Is it okay for Malaysia to force Sharia? Yes or No?

  • 14
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    Tell Islamists to learn how to get along. We remember how people started the riots in 1915 by throwing stones and attacking the ancient traditional Perehera in Kandy. Recently some burnt the buddhists flag on poson.others are provoking temples in areas where buddhists are a minority .

    • 3
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      inpotjihadi

      “Tell Islamists to learn how to get along. We remember how people started the riots in 1915 by throwing stones and attacking the ancient traditional Perehera in Kandy.”

      They are infested by Satan, Devil , Iblis and they like death.

      They will not get 72 Virgins. The best they can expect is 72 raisins.

      This is the basis problem with idiots.

      • 0
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        Amarasiri, anatomically speaking is your ‘rasins’ the same thing as clitorius?

        Soma

      • 0
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        Amarasiri, anatomically speaking is your ‘rasins’ the same thing as clitorius?

        Soma

        • 0
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          soma

          “Amarasiri, anatomically speaking is your ‘rasins’ the same thing as clitorius? “

          No!

          Raisin, Clitorius and Virgins. Virgins do have clitoriuses.

          Anyway, the Idiots are confused and dying for 72 dried grapes! They need to be “educated” about the raisins, the Earth spinning on its own axis and orbiting the Sun, and the Theory of Evolution, and ask them to get their DNA tested to show that they evolved from primates with 48 chromosomes.

          A raisin is a dried grape. Raisins are produced in many regions of the world and may be eaten raw or used in cooking, baking, and brewing. In the United Kingdom, Ireland, New Zealand, and Australia, the word “raisin” is reserved for the dark-coloured dried large grape, with “sultana” being a golden-coloured dried grape, and “currant” being a dried small Black Corinth seedless grape.

          Houri:

          In Islamic mythology, the houris (/ˈhʊəriz, ˈhaʊəriz/) or ḥūr (plural of ḥaurāʾ, “gazelle-eyed (woman)”)or ḥūrīyah (Arabic: حورية‎‎) are commonly translated as “(splendid) companions of equal age (well-matched)”, “lovely eyed”,[4] of “modest gaze”,[5] “pure beings” or “companions pure” of paradise, denoting humans and jinn who enter Jannah (paradise) after being recreated anew in the hereafter.

          Among non-Muslims, the concept of the houri received wide publicity as “virgins” (most usually 72 in number for each shahid) promised as a reward to Muslim martyrs, after their death. However, contrary to such reports, the Quran states that all believers who go to Heaven shall be granted the company of more than one houri—explicitly mentioned in the plural, and the number 72 comes from a hadith with a weak chain of narrators, and not the Quran.

          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Houri

  • 2
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    Mass L. Usuf

    RE:New Constitution: State, Religion & Buddhism

    //”Simply put, as per Article 9 is Buddhism a religion or not?”//

    Does it matter if Buddhism is a religion or not?

    Here they mean Sinhala “Buddhism”, that is not really Buddhism, that is Para-Sinhala Hegemony, wrapped in Buddhism.

    Politicians go along with it, because, it keeps the people tame and content. It is a way of life. It is called the Sinhala “Buddhist” Civilization. by Them, or rather the Hegemony.

    They sell “indulgences” for After life called Nibbana and Nirvanna, just like the Catholic Church did, and what the Wahhabies and their clones are doing now, various enticements for after life.

    What do they have in common? The averages IQs are much lower.

    National IQ Scores – Country Rankings

    http://www.photius.com/rankings/national_iq_scores_country_ranks.html

    • 0
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      Please stop fighting over nonsense.

      Allāhu Akbar!

  • 14
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    Whats wrong with giving Buddhism a prominent position in a mainly Buddhist country. After all every country adopts this position of Religion and state the dominant religeon giving the leadership. It is true in Saudi Arabia or Christian Britain or catholic Italy. If the moral code of Buddhism is adopted that code will and should apply to every person in this country and it certainly would be fair to all living creatures. The alternative is dreadful. Who will give a moral leadership in a secular Sri Lanka. will any one wish the Politicians to give that moral Leadership. We all know what morality they practice. Very unfortunately there is a barrage of anti sinhala propaganda causing an extremist response that is misleading the people that is misleading and preventing a harmonious society.

    • 2
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      vas

      “What’s wrong with giving Buddhism a prominent position in a mainly Buddhist country.”

      Nothing wrong Except, when they KILL their Fellow Tamil Citizens who are Hindus and Christians, and murder Fellow Muslims who are Islamic, and others not-being Para- Sihala “Buddhism”.

      Did the Para-Sinhala “Buddhists” kill off the Tamil Buddhists?

      Why is that there are hardly any Tamil Buddhists in Lanka, despite the fact that the True Buddhism is more egalitarian and less castist and racist than Hinduism?

      Para-Sinhala racism against their fellow Para-Tamils?

      Is it the Third Gem of the Triple Gem: The Para-Sinhala Sangha of Sinhala “Buddhism”?

  • 4
    14

    Based on two articles on CT today the Sri Lanka Constitution should read:

    “The Republic of Sri Lanka shall give to Buddhism the foremost place and accordingly it shall be the duty of the State to protect Rapists and Murders as long as the victim is not a Sinhala Buddhist”

    Until clear separation between state and religion is created in Sri Lanka this country is going to hell in a hand basket.

    • 3
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      Pathetic, childish comment.

  • 12
    3

    Islam should be banned. it is not religion it is a terrorist doctrine.All Muslims are not ISIS terrorists but All ISIS terrorists are Muslims as such as precautionary measure Islam should be banned. JRJ allowed home land theory or idealism to prosper ultimately had to wage war to eradicate it. likewise Islam idealism conquer non believers theory should be eliminated.universal brotherhood must be prevailed.otherwise ISIS will be a part of our day to day activities like in European cities.

    • 4
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      Real Buddhism is not a religion but a way of life. Lord Buddha never said he was god.
      We are talking about Sri Lanka not Syria or Iraq and in Sri Lanka Buddhists are worst terrorists in numbers and action if you define a terrorist as a person that terrorize another person or deprives another of what belongs to him or her.

      • 6
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        buddhist never killed in the name of buddhism.

        Muslims, always kill in the name Islam and that is what Mohomad wanted it.

    • 2
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      We all know that all JVP insurgents were Sinhalese and Buddhists. Did not mean all Buddhists in the world are terrorists. The same goes with the LTTE who were people mainly from either Hindu or Catholic religion, but they were not all for violence. In fact most of them were at the receiving end, simply because they either did not support their cause or who defiantly opposed them. The same goes for those followers of Islam and Muslims in ISIS dominated areas. Theirs is a political struggle to fight the injustice brought on them through Western invasions and occupation. You have absolutely no clue what Islam teaches regarding non-violence and brotherhood, nor the peaceful co-existence in lifestyles of Muslims. Your cock-eyed logic is laughable. The world is full of Muslims and they live peacefully together.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LMSzy_Jc7Hc

      • 7
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        where do Muslims live without fighting with people of the other faiths.it is their way of life.conquer non believers as they are wild beast.that is what they think of world other than that they know nothing but killing innocent animals.go through their holy-book called Koran and see that what it contain. it is good for terrorist not for law binding human.start fight insulting others there is no god but Allah. actually there is no god called Allah. Allah means god in Arabic. hired from or looted from pagans and invented new one to deceive his clan. murder is their theme not make people live. everything only for believers others condemn to fire hell.see their first sura short prayer. do it and come back but earn profits selling items to non believers every Friday. what a pity.

      • 6
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        Marwan,

        JVP insurgents are/were Marxists, they denounce any religion.

      • 4
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        Marvan:

        buddhists kill people but not in the name of Buddhism. They did not kill people even in the name of Sinhala.

        But Muslims kill even their own – sunni killing shiites and shiites killing sunnis.

        what do you think about that ?

        Muslims during their 1400 year history, have killed christians, hindus in millions and millions of buddhists.

        • 2
          2

          What the hell is Gnanasara did instigating killing Muslims in Aluthgama in the name of Sinhala Buddhism. What are the Buddhist monks in Myanmar doing killing Rohingya Muslims and dragging them out in boats, into open seas. They even make them homeless and stateless. These monks are no saints as they claim to be. They have blood on their hands and are murderers in the name of religion.

          What the west has done to destabilize the Muslim unity is the creation of factions within, started by blowing up holy sites and destroying each others Masjids, and now they are at each others throats. But the percentage of radicalized ‘Muslim’ terrorists is just a fraction compared with total population of peaceful Muslims living in the world today. Although ISIL claims to be fighting in the name of Islam, in actual fact, theirs is a political struggle, and they all happen to be Baath Party members who served in Iraq’s army unceremoniously dismissed from service. Another miscalculated judgement by US Administration officials soon after their invasion of Iraq. It was their recruitment drive on ‘Islam’ platform which triggered such large numbers to join. But on closer analysis of their background, they are all young hot blood, immature and misguided, and not even good practicing Muslims. What Islam can anyone expect from them other than just being plain cannon fodder.

          By the way, history is full of religious wars and opposing factions, some of them have continued for years and killed many. Catholics against Protestants, Christians against Muslims, Theravada against Mahayana, The Crusades, etc. the list goes on and on. This is just a passing fad and will soon be part of history.

    • 1
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      ranjith

      //”Islam should be banned. it is not religion it is a terrorist doctrine.All Muslims are not ISIS terrorists but All ISIS terrorists are Muslims as such as precautionary measure Islam should be banned.”//

      All Sinhala “Buddhists” Should be banned, as Sinhala “Buddhism” is not a religion, but is Terrorism. They have killed a number of Fellow Tamil Citizens in the past ( 1958, 1977, 1983 etc), killed a Prime Minister, and recently killed Muslims (2014) as well.

      Aluthgama BBS meeting before Riots.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fYEGctFa4qU

      They, Sinhala “Buddhists”, Killed my Father,Give my father back-Aluthgama,Dharga town kids crying

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jreY9ijQg7Q

      • 4
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        Aluthgama incident started by Muslims.crowds gathered in a nearby mosque attacked sinhalese who were going back home after a meeting.Then trouble started.if you go through sansoni commission report you can see why 83 trouble started in that scale.the other incidents you mentioned started for same reasons. see the reports on these incidents.if you are hit you have every rights to hit back.Islam is promoting terrorism.in aluthgama Muslims attacked Buddhist monk on poson poya day with out any reason. why not sinhalese attack immas or ulamas. paying in same coin.in a fight you can not fight selecting fathers or bachelors if you have family obligations you should not take part in such violence.In Burma Burmese have every rights to expel rohingyas as they were brought to Burma by British for their works. others Indian Hindus mingling with Burmese and enjoy all the rights as Burmese but rohingyas want special rights like here Muslims insult others five times a day no god but Allah. to kill cattle in their brutal way at every corner of the country. destroy Buddhists monuments near their places. as such Burmese have no obligations to look after them. they should accept Burmese culture and live peacefully like Hindus if not have to go back to their original country bangladesh. likewise here if Muslims want special culture they have to go back to where they came from morocco or India or java or Malaysia. our ancestors built our culture rich one we do not want Arabic culture here.dates trees here our tamarind trees good enough for us.

  • 10
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    A good opinion piece but it is interestingly about semantics. Buddhism does not depend on a God. So if you think of a religion as being God based/theistic it does not fit the profile. Buddha-Dharmaya is widely used. Again sadly barely anyone practices it. But on the other hand, across most Theravada Buddhist nations, Temples, Statues etc are centers of gathering and there is almost a deity like worship of a person who no longer exists as per Buddhist doctrine.

    I will like to challenge you Sir, to write a piece with the courage of Uncle Izeth on the demonic savagery of modern Arab Islam that you are all copying. Please be honest about the Sunni vs. Shia hatred; Iran vs Saudi Arabia proxy wars; Wahabists spending millions in Sri Lanka to build large mosques and buy converts and even falsely claiming places without proof to be Islamic sites; lying to people; heroin smuggling by Islamic political government ministers etc.

    But what is queer here is this gentleman is analysing Buddhism either from a learned academic perspective to make us think or from a lay Muslim point of view. I would love to see him then analyze the theistic faith called Islam; its aggressive spread(Malaysia, Indonesia etc were Hindu Kingdoms before they adapted Islam via invasion or other means; Borobudur was Mahayana Buddhist was it not?, then even Angkor Wat was first a Hindu temple; ). I would love to see him being honest about the hateful Wahabism spreading from Saudi Oil Rich imams even in Sri Lanka that is creating divisions and scaring Christians, Hindus and even Buddhists.

    He should go to the old Kelaniya Temple. He will see old paintings of CATHOLIC Portguese crimes against Buddhists and Hindus. Temples burnt, children bayoneted and thrown into fires, books and Universities burnt etc.

    Universities and centers of learning based on Hinduism and Buddhism already existed before Islam came to India via Moghuls. Moghuls tried their best to destroy Hinduism and Buddhism in what today is India specially in the North. They never conquered the South so that is why ancient beautiful Hindu Temples exist mostly in the South.

    In more recent times Taleban half baked Lateef type radicals destroyed Bamiyan. Is this guy is really a subtle Islamists or a genuine intellectual person who will talk about comparative religion? Is CT now working for the US agenda to divide people?

    I will like to see him write an intellectual academic piece on Islamic savagery now in the 21st century like in the Medieval times. Christianity, Hinduism, and Buddhism have moved along. But Islamic sexually repressed, porn watching Wahabi jihadis with barely an education in Arabistan are raping, burning alive, enslaving people even Muslims who are NOT Wahabis. The suicide bombers await 70 Virgins in heaven. I cannot help but chortle and giggle. 70 Virgins because these smelly hairy savages cannot find love in this world; so they want to kill kill kill and then see if they can get laid in a fictitious “heaven”. How sad is that?

    Buddhists also should stop wasting their time with archaic Hindu type practices of blackmagic, animal sacrifices at Hindu bloody Thirsty Kali temples out of envy, resorting to backward practices like Mahinda Rajapakse with amulets and rings of gold; henraaja thaileys etc. Do not waste money on Coconut smashing; instead buy coconuts and give to poor like I do; do not waste time hating people; instead do charity. We can learn a lot from real muslims and real christians about giving too. I do not even go to temple now. Why should I? I rather spend money on children of crippled Veterans in Sri Lankan army. Buy them coconuts instead of smashing them.

    Buddhism is practiced only by very few people in Sri Lanka.

    • 10
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      Well said TinPotJihadi;

      But I hope you will start going to Buddhist Temples at least once a year; Kelaniya Rajamahaviharaya is a wonderful place, just disregard coconut smashing and Heneraaja Thailaya.

  • 10
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    In a nutshell SINHALA-BUDDHIST in Sri Lanka is given below. The constitution of Sri Lanka should explicitly state that Buddhism is the prevalent and pre-eminent religion; hence it should be recognized as the state religion. So the non-Buddhist such as the writer will be limited to an academic discussion on religions in Sri Lanka or elsewhere.

    Sri Lanka is the country founded by SINHALA people in 543 BCE and the prevalent religion is THERAVADA BUDDHISM, which is an integral part of Sri Lankan identity and culture. There cannot be any disputes about the linkage between Sinhala people, Buddhism and Sri Lanka. There are other religions followed by Tamil Speaking Minority and Sinhala Christians. The main religions followed by the Tamil speaking minority are Hinduism and Islam (Tamil Speaking Hindus and Tamil Speaking Muslims). These Tamil speaking minorities have come from the Southern states of India; mainly Tamil Nadu and Kerala and also there are insignificant numbers of Muslim traders whose forefathers have come from Morocco. According to the recorded history the first invasion of Sinhala kingdom by the Tamil Speaking Hindus took place in 230 BCE. Therefore, it can be assumed that Tamil Hindus presence in Sri Lanka can be traced back to 230 BCE. Arrival dates of Muslim traders and other illegal migrants are somewhat sketchy. For the purpose of this subject matter, first arrivals dates of Muslims legally or illegally to Sri Lanka are irreverent as Sri Lanka was founded way before Islam was introduced to the world by Prophet Mohammed about 1400 years ago. Sinhala-Buddhist heritage is older than Christianity and Islam
    Now, do we give a damn about what various clauses of constitution state about Buddhism in Sri Lanka? Answer is NO, NO, NO. The present government and others have failed to tell the truth to the people. Buddhism is the prevalent religion and Sri Lanka is a Sinhala-Buddhist country. The Sinhala politicians are the victims of chauvinist political bullies representing minorities in the country and afraid to incorporate the truth in the constitution.

    Two Non-Sinhala -Buddhist leaders; namely SWRD Bandaranaike and JR Jayawardene were responsible for dividing Sinhala Buddhist voters into SLFP camp and UNP camp allowing minorities to insult Buddhism and Sinhala heritage in Sri Lanka. These two individuals have knowingly or unknowingly have inflicted so much damage to the birth rights of Sinhala Buddhists and their heritage. The present government is no different, under the pretext of preserving Buddhism, especially Ranil Wickramasinghe has been vying for some time to find a method to sugarcoat the constitution that does not acknowledge or recognize that Sri Lanka is a SINHALA-BUDDHIST country EXPLICITLY.

    For sure many clauses are conflicting but you must understand that is by design to retain power and hoodwink the Sinhala Buddhists. The design or the architecture of this greatest deception belongs to SWRDB , JRJ and their followers.

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    cannot even define what buddhism is, what type of a constitution is this document.
    Buddhism is a phylosphy not a religion, as the end goal is nothingness, called nirvana or non existence. very vague and a work in progess with little understanding by monks, you can get good stories but no path with lots of confusion.

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      Jehan your ignorance is astounding.

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    Buddhism as a philosophy is different to Buddhism as a religion and a way of life for people. They are not all Sinhalese even in Sri Lanka. Fundamentally Budhism is a very peaceful religion unless its existence is threatened. No group in history has fought wars or conquered land on behalf of Buddhism but they have been at the receiving end a lot. That should prove beyond all doubt to the anti Buddhists in this forum who are full of smug prejudice and take great pleasure in insulting Buddhists and Buddhism.
    Due to numerous foreign incursions/invasions the last been free enterprise and the open economy Buddhism is corrupted in Sri Lanka. People have become greedy and selfish with no morals which does not sit with the fundamentals of Buddhism. The politics and the politicians (what a bunch of immoral, greedy, selfish thugs) have to bear a great deal of responsibility for this. Buddhism has been used for petty gains by them. Instead they should be leading by example and nourish, encourage and protect true Buddhism and Buddhist clergy.

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    Theoretical humbug by the writer .. Any so called religion or philosophy is for the betterment of the living beings and for the benefit of small green planet that we live in..

    Any one that use name called god ( or dog if you turn it) is a fraud and nothing but a moron since it does not exist.
    Ancient Islam use to create great scholars but modern islam is nothing but a dangerous facist ideology pushed by camel jockeys with mythical kingdom that created by zionist money. This ideology is helping arm dealers to get rich and also same arm dealers sit of veto wielding security council. What a joke..
    Sinhalese Buddhist created this beautiful country and also welcome muslims and also tamils that embraced SL culture.
    There are few anglicised sinhalese and tamils are now fighting for the white man since they lost their influence and others sucking up to wahabism.
    If you cannot follow SL traditions you should get out and that apply to any one and stop writing stories for the behalf of indians, christians or wahabis.

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      Even the Great Islam was not different from modern Islam.

      At that time, Muslims made alliances with Eastern scholars in order to get their knowledge on the that hand, islamic conquests around that scholarly cities.

      Because Mohomad knew war and knowledge have lot of power in those.

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    “cannot even define what buddhism “

    This is normal when one believes some thing to be what it is not.

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    Can this Muslim writer write a same kind of letter in Saudi or middle east country media condemning their policies on other religions. like Buddhist worker can not even receive greeting card with Buddha’s picture in it in those countries. can this write a letter to Saudi press in this regard.but Muslims those countries are holiest countries. how come they expect human rights without accepting others rights. writer should explain.

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      Those Arab countries are 100 percent Muslim countries, and therefore everything they do and act has to be within the Sharia acceptable laws. Idol worship is Haram (prohibited) and so they will not permit or release any pictures that portray such images.

      Worth watching to better understand the differences of being Muslim and anyone else.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uMm_h0E0wR0

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        then what is wrong with we giving first preference to Buddhism while others granted their rights as per their wish .Buddhism came here even before your Mohammad was born even.what is the meaning of racism.denying others rights.you talk on Burma on rohigyas rights but were brought there by British as such Burmese have every rights to expel them as rohingyas not willing to adjust to Burmese culture.but Hindus who brought same time mingling with them Burmese and enjoy all the rights.if majority do not want to grant halal food certifications, killing cattle every corner of the country,five times a day insult to others over the loud speakers like there is no god but ALLAH.calling others wild beast.praying for curse on others everyday but do business with them for livelihood. where is universal brotherhood, where is humanity.like Hitler brainwashing believers saying others are animal as such no harm killing them.do you think people would appreciate your religion with such a mind set.others may kill you all before you even touch them. that is self defense.in Nalanda bhakthir killed all the monks as they were not prepared but in Tibet he lost all his men except few as monks were well prepared with martial art called kunfu. fighting art without erroneous thoughts only the evasive actions of the body.only a single pole is allowed as it consider as evasive action. normally when in danger human tend to get cover in the jungle. as such one wooden pole allowed.as per Buddhism erroneous thoughts lead towards karma or sins.

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        With his reply to my posting or comment writer or marven I feel he is a pious Muslims accepting and depending policies of his holiest countries in middle east.we know Islam permit lying as such his comment that those countries hundred percent Muslims is no issue.where is Arab Christians not even considered as citizen of those countries.estimated percentage in Saudi is ten or twelve percent.but no rights for them at all but writer or marvan those countries are holiest. around four percent Muslim population having all the headache due to their collaboration with Bengali Muslims extremist when Burma expel them from the country, it is a violation of rights. I think this marvan is a pious Muslims as well as apologist of ISIS.I am surprise to hear such comment from person like him.I feel local Muslims with that kind of mindset inviting sinhalese to attack them.if sinhalese attack them they have no where to go except confine to refugees camp in kalpitiya peninsula or small Island in maldives. come out assimilate with sinhalese Buddhist and Hindu Tamil culture get your grievances sorted out.otherwise in near future big holocaust can be expected as per the indication leaders may favour Muslims but their lives depend on dealing with general public.remember around fifty thousand army personal still at large. all are Buddhists. with big faith to Buddhists monks who by heart and soul supported them in their war effort.Even large number of Hindu Tamil LTTE carders released to society.they will not favour Muslims in north and east I think Muslims appeased by rise of ISIS and with news that their population growth rates is double the growth rate of entire population may try to undermine rights of majority communities.but ultimately they will be the biggest looser.

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    Mass L. Usuf is very cunning and very dangerous in his views. As the chairman or whoever of Hindu council in Kandy said about the illegal construction of the Mosque, Muslims are testing if the Buddhist are awake.

    CT, where is the news of latest Muslim stunt in France? as Muslim’s golden age is in progress….

    Maldives, Indonesia, Malaysia, Pakistan, India, Afghanistan, etc were once peaceful Buddhist countries, now they are Muslim hellholes, extremist Muslims are plotting to Muslimize Buddhist Sri Lanka which will never happen, because Sinhala-Buddhist will teach the extremist Muslims an unforgettable lesson for sure.

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    As far as I know, all Islamic countries have model Constitutions to be emulated by backward States like Sri Lanka, Thailand and India.Saudi Arabia is a shining example among them.

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    [Edited out] Please write instead of posting web links – CT

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