The Practice Of Honour Killing In An Early Buddhist Society

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By Darshanie Ratnawalli

 Darshanie Ratnawalli

Darshanie Ratnawalli

If you told me that Buddhism causes dilemmas to rulers who are required by tradition to uphold social norms that enshrine killing such as war, hunting, judicial homicide and honour killing, I will snigger. As I snigger, I’ll be thinking of the earliest Buddhist societies such as the Vajjis[i] and the earliest Buddhist royal disciples such as Pasenadi Kosala. The theory of a social dilemma causing Buddhism is outlined in Betraying Buddhism and Undermining Sri Lanka, an article by Tisaranee Gunasekara in Colombo Telegraph. She says; “According to the Buddha’s teaching the killing of any living being is a sin and those who commit such deeds have to suffer the consequences in this and subsequent births. The dilemma caused by this belief system to the Lankan kings is easy to imagine. They needed armies to protect their thrones and/or to extend their politico-geographical holdings. But if true Buddhism took root in the island, finding soldiers to fight their wars may have become next-to-impossible.”

The last sentence contains a clear surmise that wherever true Buddhism takes root, society will become dysfunctional. The people will tie themselves into knots over the first precept and stop behaving normally. Apparently, when true Buddhism takes root, the first precept grows like a weed crushing out all other norms until society breaks down.

As I sat contemplating this strange belief of Ms Gunasekara, it occurred to me that perhaps, she or the ideology she represents may be confusing Buddhism with Jainism. There is a very telling statement of hers which strongly suggests confusion; “Given this crystal clear and unequivocal stance, Buddhism was (and continues to be) betrayed not by Prof. Tambiah but by those who use a teaching premised on ahimsa to justify war and violence.” Buddhism can be described as a ‘teaching premised on ahimsa’ only to the extent that an elephant can be called a black animal. It fails to be a defining statement, doesn’t distinguish or convey the unique proposition of Buddhism or the elephant. In fact, in certain contexts, calling Buddhism ‘a teaching premised on ahimsa’ can be as evasive as calling an elephant in a crowd of black animals, a black animal. This is because “the teaching of ahimsa—non-harming, non-injury, so ancient that its beginnings are lost in the mists of time—held sway, even if in moderation, over the whole of India. It was a teaching much accentuated by the Jains who were precursors of the Buddha and also contemporary with him. Though they were among his greatest rivals, he would not have wished to go against them on such a point or thought a different teaching possible.”– (I. B Horner, “Women in Early Buddhist Literature[ii]”- full text). In Jainism there are practices that privilege ahimsa to the point of civilizational breakdown. A Jaina ascetic for example, does not bathe or brush his teeth to refrain from harming the bugs. Though never going to such an extreme, genuine followers of the Buddha dhamma can hardly help being attracted to the practice of ahimsa. This attraction will certainly help them to shun unlawful killing, but will it convince them to renounce lawful killing too? Did the Buddha envisage or actually experience societies that had given up their conventional norms sanctifying killing? Not really. For instance, the Licchavis or the Vajjis, the only society to be singled out by the Buddha as a model of good governance and ethical conduct, granted societal and state sanction to a husband to kill his unfaithful wife.

The Licchavis were also fond of hunting. “Now on that occasion a number of Licchavi youths had taken their strung bows and were walking and wandering in the Great Wood, accompanied by a pack of dogs, when they saw the Blessed One seated at the foot of a tree to dwell for the day. When they saw him, they put down their strung bows, sent the dogs off to one side, and approached him. They paid homage to the Blessed One and silently stood in attendance upon him with their hands joined in reverential salutation.”– (Anguttara Nikaya iii, 76 – p690, Numerical Discourses[iii]full text). The Licchavis were warlike and to judge from one story, not prepared to brook any unauthorized incursions into their territory. Once, king Pasenadi Kosala’s commander in chief, Bandhula broke through the guard and together with his wife, entered the tank which supplied water for the ceremonial sprinklings of Licchavi Royal families. This was simply to satisfy a pregnancy craving of the said wife. Yet, five hundred Licchavi kings (the state was a republic) unheeding the warning of their advisor, pursued them until all five hundred were slain by Bandhula’s arrow- (Jataka No. 465[iv] Full text).

The case of the Lichchavi adulteress given in the Bhikkunivibhanga of the Vinaya Pitaka (Vin.IV, 225 @ p182-184 of Horner III[v]full text) revolves around the practice of honour killing, which was sanctioned by a society that the Buddha himself had upheld as a model. It also gives us a glimpse of how the Buddhist Order legislated to withhold its asylum from individuals the society had marked for death. Here is the story.

“Now at that time in Vesali, the wife of a certain Licchavi came to be an adulteress. Then that Licchavi spoke thus to that woman; “Please desist, else will we do you harm.” But being spoken to thus, she paid no heed. Now at that time a group of Licchavis were assembled in Vesali on some business. Then that Licchavi spoke thus to those Licchavis: “Let the masters allow me power over one woman.”

“What is her name?”

“My wife commits adultery, I will kill her.”

“Take your right,” they said.”

Now this woman hears that her husband wants to kills her and taking precious belongings (which in our laws she has a right to, but were solely her husband’s property in those days) she flees to various religious sects for asylum. She is denied admission by every sect including by Buddhist nuns. Finally a Buddhist nun notorious in the tradition for her malpractices admits her after taking those precious belongings. Her husband tracks her down; “Then that Licchavi, searching for that woman, having gone to Savatthi, seeing her gone forth among the nuns, approached King Pasenadi of Kosala; having approached, he spoke thus to King Pasenadi of Kosala: “ Sire, my wife, taking precious belongings, has reached Savatthi; let the king allow me power over her.” When the king learns that she is with the nuns, he advices the husband to give it a rest; “If, good sir, she has gone forth among the nuns, there is nothing to do against her. Well preached by the lord is dhamma; let her lead the Brahma-life for the utter ending of ill.” This doesn’t put an end to the matter. The mutterings soon start; “How can these nuns let a woman thief go forth?”, “How can the lady Thullananda let a woman thief go forth?” Finally it leads to the setting down of the following Vinaya rule; “Whatever nun should knowingly receive a woman thief found to merit death, without having obtained permission from a king or an Order or a group or a guild or a company, … that nun also has fallen into a matter that is an offence at once, entailing a formal meeting of the Order involving being sent away.”

There’s no doubt that the Buddhist Doctrine per se can be invoked against lawful killing as well against unlawful killing. After all, it’s the current norm, which makes killing lawful or unlawful and it’s the society which makes the norm. Nevertheless, throughout its long history Buddhism seems to have been cautious about invoking the doctrine against killing sanctioned by law, such as war and judicial homicide. As a result, modern activism, which tries to rope in Buddhism for a purpose which it was never intended to serve, will continue to come up against embarrassing ironies. Tisaranee Gunasekara is a good example. Warming to her task in Betraying Buddhism and undermining Sri Lanka she writes; “In fact the only kind of governance which seemed to have met with his (the Buddha’s parenthesis mine) unqualified approval was the collective, consensual and quasi-democratic rule of the Vajjis”. The next moment, someone points out that this unqualified approval earning governance also allowed a wronged husband to kill his wife. And that at such a contingency even the Buddhist Order would withhold its asylum. Most people would blush and determine to be cautious in future about using an ancient religion for simplistic modern lobbying.

@ http://ratnawalli.com /  and rathnawalli@gmail.com


[i] Vajji and Licchavi in Buddhist Dictionary of Pali Proper Names where most entries have been taken from ‘Dictionary of Pali Proper Names’ by G. P. Malalasekera

[ii] Women in Early Buddhist Literature’– A Talk to the All-Ceylon Buddhist Women’s Association, Colombo, 18 January 1961 by I. B. Horner- (Full text)

[iii] The Numerical Discourses of the Buddha – A Translation of the Anguttara Nikaya By Bhikkhu Bodhi.- (Full text)

[iv] The Jataka No. 465, Vol. IV, tr. by W.H.D. Rouse, [1901], at sacred-texts.com, BHADDA-SĀLA-JĀTAKA – (Full text).

[v] The Book of the Discipline (Vinaya-Pitaka), Volume III (Suttavibhanga), translated by I. B. Horner- (Full text)

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64 Responses to The Practice Of Honour Killing In An Early Buddhist Society

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    Disclaimer. Thanking the positive commentors, yet emphasizing that comments and the commentors on this site are not connected with me in any way. All the comments are entirely a reflection on the democracy and the discretion of this site. I haven’t solicited those comments in any way, nor am I part of any “circle” consisting of these commentors. They are completely unknown to me and I haven’t submitted my article to them. This disclaimer is to establish the widest distance from and renounce all responsibility for the levels of comprehension of those outside my intended target audience. In other words, this is not my group. Although there are sites out there that are maintained to facilitate discussion within a group, this is not to my knowledge such a group-site.

    Darshanie Ratnawalli
    October 12, 2014 at 4:22 pm
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      I think you are crazy… How beautiful is Christianity explaining human consciousness using one book or Baghawad Geeta, unlike Buddhist Pali cannon… If you add the prefix of “I heard” to all those Pali Jathaka katha statements, how could one seriously argue about any statement in those stories? Core concept of Buddhism is that nobody can hear or see exactly what is happening outside through their senses. Perceptions, “Nama Parwatha”, interfere and interpret those signals. So what about those Jathaka katha story writers??? You are angry that Thisaranee uses those stories to explain ugly things happening in SL S-Sinhalese.. You are arguing about couple of pages of Pali cannon. How about putting your effort to understand basic nature like why world rotate, why temperature goes down when get closer to Sun? How brain neuron, synapses works, what Newton principle are or what is the core of Quantum physics? Dalai Lama who master Sanskrit Buddhist books (very few compared to Pali cannon I guess) has good understating on brain functions, body physics and quantum physics… use your brain to teach more useful things to S-Sinhalese.

      AVB
      October 12, 2014 at 7:02 pm
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      Darshanie Ratnawalli, A have a question to you, and I hope you answer it. If everybody followed Buddha, the enlightened and went begging for a living as he did, what will happen to the world? Who will do the work to feed the world full of beggars. By the way these bhikkus are really following Buddha’s deeds by not working, but they went a step further – living on handouts and spreading hatred against non-Buddhists in Sri Lanka and Burma. If Buddha didn’t want others to follow his deeds but only his words, won’t that be the height of hypocrisy? Sorry, I am in the habit of questioning the thoughts of even the great ones, for that is why Nature gave us the power to think and question things through.

      Thiru
      October 12, 2014 at 8:23 pm
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        I will answer on behalf of Ratnawallah. Bring Sri Lanka under ISIS control, bump off all foolish Buddhists, legalise poligamy – for men only of course-, child brides and sharia law. Problems will be solved overnight as has been in Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan..

        paul
        October 13, 2014 at 3:04 pm
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          Paul, Don’t you worry, Gota and Gnanasara are doing the job for inviting ISIS to Sri Lanka. Once they are in, what you wish will be fulfilled.

          Thiru
          October 13, 2014 at 3:35 pm
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            Most Sri Lankan Budhists do not follow what Budha said. They only get worked up when someone poses in front of a Budha statue, or some one has a tattoo on her arms. They do not worry about the killings, robbery, hatred, rapes, disappearances, in their neighborhood. They keep on electing the same murderers to power. Majority of the Bikus just wear the yellow robe, without earning a penny and enjoy life just like any others in the sly.

            bewildered
            October 14, 2014 at 7:03 am
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              “Most Sri Lankan Budhists do not follow what Budha said. They only get worked up when someone poses in front of a Budha statue”, Unlike islamists who continued to love Salmon Rusdie for what he wrote or the cartoonist who drew a caricature of mohammed..:-)

              paul
              October 15, 2014 at 1:22 am
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          paul “legalise poligamy – for men only of course-, child brides and sharia law. Problems will be solved overnight as has been in Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan..” Good idea. Please consider legalising Sinhala/Buddhists fathers raping their own under age daughters in Sri Lanka. Here you can read the best of Sinhala/Buddhism. SRI LANKA: A 13-year-old girl was raped by her father October 25, 2002 Father rapes 20-year-old daughter November 20, 2013 What a country do we live: HIV father rapes daughter infecting her with HIV Details Created On Monday, 07 July 2014 The man, a mason by profession, is a 40 year old father of three children. He has raped his own daughter who is 16 years old two times in 2013 when her mother was not at home. Father rapes 14 year old girl in Uva Paranagama By RSL – Tue Oct 30, 11:10 pm Dad impregnates daughter, mom abroad He tortured her siblings if she did not co-operate By Correspondent Published Monday, October 13, 2014 Colombo: A minor Sri Lankan girl who tolerated being raped by her father because she couldn’t see him torture her 4-year-old brother, is set to deliver his child, reported Lakbima. Child Rape on the Rise in Sri Lanka COLOMBO, Jul 23 2012 (IPS) – A spate of child rape cases in Sri Lanka has angered child rights activists and moved the government to consider tightening the relevant laws and making the offence punishable with the death sentence. A government statement released in parliament in May said that of the 1,450 female rape cases reported in 2011, child rape accounted for 1,169, alerting authorities and activists to a rising trend. Earlier this month, police said in a statement that over 700 complaints of rape or abuse of children were filed in the first half of the year, and that, on average, at least four cases were being reported daily. But, according to the National Child Protection Authority (NCPA), the situation is far worse than what is being reported to the police and the authority estimates that over 20,000 cases of child abuse may have occurred in the first half of this year. http://www.ipsnews.net/2012/07/child-rape-on-the-rise-in-sri-lanka/

          Native Vedda
          October 15, 2014 at 4:30 am
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            Native I found something quite interesting on the introduction of the transformation of Theravada buddhism. http://www.island.lk/index.php?page_cat=article-details&page=article-details&code_title=103629 Prof M M J Marasinghe, a specialist in pali and buddhist studies explains the impact of ritualistic as well as south Indian influence on Theravada buddhism. It is interesting to note opinion of scholars unlike charlatans claiming “Brought To Sihaladipa And Put Into Sihalabhasa For The Benefit Of The Dipavasin” Sabbe satta bhavantu sukhitatta

            ken Robert
            October 15, 2014 at 12:41 pm
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              ken Robert Thanks a lot It is an interesting read. I hope you will now join me in the pursuit of liberating Buddha’s teaching/Buddhism from Sinhala/Buddhists. Is the author blaming Demela king Sena and the Demela monk Buddhagosa for corrupting Buddhism?

              Native Vedda
              October 16, 2014 at 3:54 am
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                Dear Native Is the author blaming Demela king Sena and the Demela monk Buddhagosa for corrupting Buddhism? Absolutely. They were good in recruiting the masses into the religion for political purposes be it buddhaghosa or Nayanmars of Saivaism, but they opened the door for corruption of noble principles. Stupid genes of demelas and sinhala speaking demelas were a fertile ground for this ritualistic degradation of religion and Caste formation of the society. I am happy to join this liberation of both tamils and sinhalese to liberate them from their corrupted religions.

                ken Robert
                October 16, 2014 at 12:32 pm
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                  ken Robert Thanks

                  Native Vedda
                  October 16, 2014 at 1:53 pm
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            Difference, my dear NV, is that all those listed are illegal under sl law and perpetrators are punished once caught. In the case of poligamy, child brides and sharia law of stoning women to death in public for poligamy is perfectly legal under islam and that is exactly what they are fighting for all over the world :-)

            paul
            October 16, 2014 at 12:35 am
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              paul “all those listed are illegal under sl law and perpetrators are punished once caught.” Though many actions are illegal people of this land continue to behave as if everything is okay. Why do we have to have laws that no one respect them. Therefore I suggested make it legal with sharia law: “Please consider legalising Sinhala/Buddhists fathers raping their own under age daughters in Sri Lanka.” Anyway unlike Banda, mechanic,yourself ………… Chambers, .. I am not on expert on Sharia law nor am I expert on anything at all. I just wanted to point out your brand of hypocrisy. That’s all. Nothing personal.

              Native Vedda
              October 16, 2014 at 3:47 am
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        Thiru and Dharshani “If everybody followed Buddha, the enlightened and went begging for a living as he did, what will happen to the world?” In Tibet as high as 25% of the men were Monks. Others had to work and plough the fields and feed the Monks. the Monks controlled the best productive lands, and the people essentially became the serfs and slaves of the Monks. In Sri Lanka, about a third of the fertile land were controlled the the Temple and the monks.(Mahawamsa amnd Dipawansa). In addition, the Temple had slaves and serfs to work the Land. Naturally, the Monks want that system back. Want to know more? Buddhism The Great Evil — Part 1 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wNOfTGSADdY Buddhism The Great Evil — Part 2 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=clcs2PSze0I The Story of Tibet’s Serfs 3/6 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jv6D8RYucX4 Uploaded on Mar 11, 2009 Play List http://www.youtube.com/view_play_list… * The True Face Of The Dalai Lama by Kalovski at 4-2-8 http://www.rense.com/general81/faeeof… [Part.10] Also like in medieval Europe, Tibet’s feudalists fought to suppress anything that might undermine their “watertight” system. All observers agree that, before the Maoist revolution, there were no magazines, printed books, or non-religious literature of any kind in Tibet. The only Tibetan language newspaper was published in Kalimpong by a converted Christian Tibetan. The source of news of the outside world was travelers and a couple of dozen shortwave radios that were owned only by members of the ruling class. The masses created folklore, but the written language was reserved for religious dogma and disputes. The masses of people and probably most monks were kept completely illiterate. Education, outside news and experimentation were considered suspect and evil. Defenders of lamaism act like this religion was the essence of the culture (and even the existence) of the Tibetan people. This is not true. Like all things in society and nature, Lamaist Buddhism had a beginning and will have an end. There was culture and ideology in Tibet before lamaism. Then this feudal culture and religion arose together with feudal exploitation. It was inevitable that lamaist culture would shatter together with those feudal relations. In fact, when the Maoist revolution arrived in 1950, this system was already rotting from within. Even the Dalai Lama admits that the population of Tibet was declining. It is estimated there were about 10 million Tibetans 1,000 years ago when Buddhism was first introduced­by the time of the Maoist revolution there were only two or three million left. Maoists estimate that the decline had accelerated: the population had been cut in half during the last 150 years. The lamaist system burdened the people with massive exploitation. It enforced the special burden of supporting a huge, parasitic, non-reproducing clergy of about 200,000­that absorbed 20 percent or more of the region’s young men. The system suppressed the development of productive forces: preventing the use of iron plows, the mining of coal or fuel, the harvesting of fish or game, and medical/sanitary innovation of any kind. Hunger, the sterility caused by venereal disease, and polyandry kept the birthrate low. The mystical wrapping of lamaism cannot hide that old Tibetan society was a dictatorship of the serf owners over the serfs. There is nothing to romanticize about this society. The serfs and slaves needed a revolution! * Originally from http://www.bestcyrano.org/cyrano/?p=507

        Amarasiri
        October 14, 2014 at 4:14 am
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      Darshanie Ratnawalli “The theory of a social dilemma causing Buddhism is outlined in “Betraying Buddhism and Undermining Sri Lanka”, an article by Tisaranee Gunasekara in Colombo Telegraph. She says; “According to the Buddha’s teaching the killing of any living being is a sin and those who commit such deeds have to suffer the consequences in this and subsequent births. The dilemma caused by this belief system to the Lankan kings is easy to imagine. They needed armies to protect their thrones and/or to extend their politico-geographical holdings. But if true Buddhism took root in the island, finding soldiers to fight their wars may have become next-to-impossible.” The Issue is between a just ruler and unjust ruler. The unjust rulers will try to protect their hegemony using armies. This is what is happening now. The MaRa Regime, Mahinda Rajapaksa Regime, is trying to protect their unjust rule by using power things, police, thugs etc. The Sinhala “Buddhist” Monks are aiding and abetting, that has noting to do with Buddhas’s teachings, but everything to do with retaining the hegemony and power, for example what happened at Aluthgama. In Lanka, the Land of Native Veddah, the Sinhala, the Tamils and others are Paras, Paradershis. Even Buddhism, Sinhala”Buddhism” , is a Para-Religion, a Paradeshi Religion. The Native Veddah Athho, the original inhabitants and owners of the land had better ethics than the Paras from South and East India. The Vedda Tribe https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f89NuukY32U Tamil-speaking Veddas of Vaharai await war recovery support https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HeFCuZwexRw In the Ruler-Monk Power sharing Complex, the Kings gave about 335 of the best productive lands to the temples and Monks, and they had slaves working for them. Did Buddha Teach that? No. So. the monks scratched the Rulers back and the ruler gave them dana, Land and Slaves to work the Land. Not much different from the Current Saudi-Wahhabi Complex in Saudi Arabia.,

      Amarasiri
      October 12, 2014 at 8:35 pm
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    Darshini’s expositions are very helpful to restrain extreme religionists from using Buddhism to justify all their actions and veer them toward the Middle Path. These essays are so well researched that they remain unchallenged by other scholars in Buddhism. If she gets rid of the affected jargon and subservience to Western literary allusions (e.g., Holmes-Watson analogy, etc.), her collection of essays would provide a list of ideas for devout Buddhists for self-examination (samma sati) or vipassana meditation. I would also call upon Darshini or her backers (like CT) to examine the position of the Abrahamic religions on the very same issues or similar issues on which they have “exposed” Buddhism. Otherwise, by sheer omission they are resorting to distortion.

    Village Green Guy
    October 12, 2014 at 5:18 pm
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      After reading this article, it is absolutely hilarious to see some people calling it well researched that “they remain unchallenged by other scholars in Buddhism”. LOL First of all, she is quoting the so called “Buddhist” Jataka tales (folk tales very similar to Aesop fables, Pancha Tantra, Parables, etc) to support her arguments. It is believed that the Buddha himself told the Jathaka stories about his previous lives as a Bodhisathva, but however, if one analyses the Indian/Hindu stories you will come across very similar stories with some minor difference. Leaving the ‘scholars’ aside, can even a Buddhist with a rational mind believe that the Buddha would have told these Jataka tales and that too as true stories of his past? Let us consider some examples, In the Nandivisala Jataka, we have an intelligent talking bull that could pull hundred carts. The Mirga Jataka talks about a deer that saved a drowning merchant and later preached the Dhamma to the king who was hunting. In Sivi Jataka, king Sivi redeemed a pigeon by giving his own flesh, an exactly identical story is found in the Mahabharata. I do not want to list all the Jatakas here to elaborate my point, but take a closer look at them and think, do you believe that they are true? It can be clearly proved that the bulk of these stories which form the Jataka are pre Buddhistic and merely adaptations of Brahmanic/Hindu tales and fables which are much older. The Buddhist scriptures were written long after Lord Buddha’s passing away by disciples most of whom were Brahmins. Thus, it is not surprising that a lot of Brahminical myths and concepts, which the Buddha (himself from a Hindu family) has discarded, crept back into the Tripitika. Another Jataka story which the Buddhists strongly believe is the Kusa Fathakaya, where the Bodhisattva was born as Kusa, and married a beautiful princess Pabawathie. Sakra the king of Gods came unnoticed by any one while Pabawathie was asleep and rubbed her navel with his toe. This caused her to conceive without any intimacyual congress. This is very similar to the virgin conception (mother of Jesus Christ) and oral conception (mother of Sri Rama). Therefore, it is NOT Tisaranee Gunasekara who is confused here, but those who strongly believe in the mythical Jataka stories as truth like this author Darshanie Ratnawalli. It occurred to me that perhaps, like many other confused belivers, she or the ideology she represents may be confusing Buddhism with Brahmanism/Hinduism. The biggest joke is, those erudite scholars and writers whom Darshanie Ratnawalli tries to vilify do not even bother to read any of her juvenile articles. It may take more than 10 years for Darshanie Ratnawalli to get matured and come a bit closer to the thinking level of Tisaranee Gunasekara and that too if she gets rid of her jealousy towards these famous people. Until then, she can continue with her wet dreams and play rubric cube/jig-saw puzzles.

      Janaka Fernando
      October 13, 2014 at 12:12 pm
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    to win against tamils LTTE the army wanted singhala soilders in thousands. Due to the influence of karma and killing a human will lead to be born as a cow/donkey in buddhism(rebirth idealogy). The monks were recruited in thousands to go to villages and preach tamils a less than pigs. Then singaleese villagers beleiving the monks started to come to the army. Now these monks are trying to protray muslims less than humans so a race riot they can start. like the terrorist wirathu.

    JEHAN
    October 12, 2014 at 5:40 pm
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      This JEhan is a LIer. Instead of writing unsubstantiated lies, write evidence. Ask any buddhists how Buddhism explain Karma. Not the way you talk BOZO.

      Jim softy
      October 12, 2014 at 10:55 pm
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        Jim, “Karma” is one of least understood words in S-Buddhism. You ask 10 S-Buddhists the meaning of “Karma” to see how different their understandings are. Karma –> “Kriyawa” –> Action Causality ??? I heard Buddhist teaching “Even Chethana –> Karma”. What does this means?

        AVB
        October 13, 2014 at 5:37 am
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    O fragrant Darshanie, What does the noble scriptures say about slapping and kicking someone who lies for the King?

    Spring Koha
    October 12, 2014 at 6:01 pm
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      The Dcoterine calls for kicking koha in the balls . Cheers Abhaya

      Abhaya
      October 13, 2014 at 12:12 am
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        bla bl-Abhaya “The Dcoterine calls for kicking koha in the balls.” As MR’s official ba**s carrier does the doctrine request you to kick other’s ba**s? Please clarify?

        Native Vedda
        October 13, 2014 at 1:13 am
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          Lmao , wow now koha has a ball carrier . Cheers Abhaya

          Abhaya
          October 13, 2014 at 3:30 am
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            The days where Abhayas will be hung by their balls are not far. That is the reality.

            Sun
            October 13, 2014 at 3:51 am
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            You suck at it, Kabiya!

            Lolimbawangsa
            November 2, 2014 at 3:28 pm
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        Kabaya, do Kohas have balls?

        Nikabaya
        November 2, 2014 at 3:19 pm
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    It is pleasure to read your article with Disclaimer tagging. By the way Dharshanee ; It is said that, IT IS SAID, not only The Practice Of Honour Killing In An Early Buddhist Society but also in 20th century [present day society], They Practice Of Honour Killing at Hambaya Thota, burning women in Brick kilns to save the Family honour and to show that, They are not Sinners, Not Rapists they are belongs to upper, higher class In the So called Buddhist Society. So We are the true believers and saviours of Buddhism and we are the Sinhala Buddhists to the world, with Saman mal Wattiya Offering. THISARANA SARANA WEVA!.

    JULAMPITIYE AMARAYA
    October 12, 2014 at 6:06 pm
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      Say, “Tisaranee ge Sarana wewaa”.

      Tis Moises
      November 4, 2014 at 3:07 am
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    While I understand the point the author is making here, one must keep in mind that most people that read this will somehow assume that this is an article justifying the use of force and violence in the name of Buddhism.

    Kp
    October 12, 2014 at 8:06 pm
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    Jehan, can you please provide evidence for your assertions? As for this article, the take-home point is not to use one’s pedestrian (mis)understanding of any religion’s theology to justify your view or agendas. I agree that it is a slippery slope when one tries to (a)buse religious doctrine to argue for contemporary social issues. The American evangelists using selective passages of the Bible to condemn women’s rights, homosexuality, inter-racial marriage and to support slavery are some examples of how dangerous such a practice can be. There are 3 important points one must not forget when trying to convince others of one’s position using religion: (1) most of the main religions in this world were found 1000s of years ago; thus the context in which they came to being was very different from the contemporary world. Therefore, applying the “rules/conclusions” made millennia ago to the current world will be totally out of context (eg. ISIS trying to create a Wahabbi Utopian caliphate). (2) It’s usually not the founders of a religion who wrote/preached the theology. It was the followers who did this, and usually over several decades/centuries. Thus trying to get the moral high ground by ascribing certain behaviors to the Buddha or Jesus (eg. what would Jesus do), is pointless. (3) perhaps the most important point: There is a clear difference between the popular vs. the theological versions of a religion. The religion practiced by the masses (“common/popular” religion) is often quite different from what religious texts or doctrines preach. Most practitioners are totally unaware of what the texts/doctrine say. Another point is that religion is mutable: it changes from culture to culture, with time and with exposure to other world views. Thus the Buddhism practiced in Sri Lanka is different from that practiced in Thailand, let alone in Tibet. In my opinion no one sect/type is superior to another, as long as it serves the purposes that its practitioners define, as long as everyone practices the “live and let live” philosophy.

    sinhalese buddhist
    October 12, 2014 at 8:47 pm
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      I agree that it is a slippery slope when one tries to (a)buse religious doctrine to argue for contemporary social issues This statement is not true. buddha’s word is said to be fitting to any time (akaaliko) in the world.

      Jim softy
      October 13, 2014 at 3:49 am
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      Sinhala buddhist does not know any buddhism at all. He is most probably a Catholic/christian. In comparision to thistic religions, buddhism is not a religion. It is a doctrine. Read buddhism and understand. If not you are Bstting.

      Jim softy
      October 13, 2014 at 3:51 am
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        Akaaliko is killing Tamils and Muslims in Sri Lanka and Myanmar.

        BBS Rep
        October 14, 2014 at 8:05 am
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        “Sinhala buddhist does not know any buddhism at all. He is most probably a Catholic/ Christian”. You mean so totally blind, utterly stupid and completely beyond redemption? :-)

        paul
        October 14, 2014 at 1:51 pm
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          paul “You mean so totally blind, utterly stupid and completely beyond redemption? :-)” You have 20 million of them. You haven’t seen them because you are one of them, totally blind, utterly stupid and completely beyond redemption.

          Native Vedda
          October 15, 2014 at 1:01 pm
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      S-Buddhist, I totally agree with you except the statement ” thus the context in which they came to being was very different from the contemporary world.. Therefore, applying the “rules/conclusions” made millennia ago to the current world will be totally out of context “. The Bible, Baghawad Geeta are most printed books in the world and also most read books in the world (Buddhist books are not any less but there is no single book I can quote. Dhammapada?). Why people are still reading the Bible and Bhagawad Geeta? Because those concepts about human mind/conciousness doesn’t change with time.. Kind, compassion feeling soothes your mind/body and people nearby.. anger/hatred made your mind/body anxious, bad chemicals/electrochemical signals passes through the body and similar bad effect flows to people nearby.. Do these change with time????

      AVB
      October 13, 2014 at 5:58 am
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      Well-said Sinhalese Buddhist. From the points you are making, it is very clear that these ancient Religions or doctrines or what ever you call it, are all crap (including Buddhism). So all you Religion following bigots, ask yourself the question: In this 21st century, when we humans are more knowledgeable of reality than at anytime in our history, Why do we need to follow this ancient bullshit ?

      Rationalist
      October 13, 2014 at 10:45 am
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        To The ‘Other Rationalist’:- If you CAN think Rationally, you would understand that Buddhism, or the ‘Dhamma that the Buddha Taught’, is not a Religion or a Doctrine or what ever you like to Call it. The Dhamma is a Path which can be followed; A Way of Life that can be used by anyone who wishes to cause the Least harm to Oneself and Others! Try it sometime, without mouthing Platitudes about things you do not Understand, or even try to Understand!

        Rationalist
        October 13, 2014 at 12:38 pm
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        this rationalist is a retard.

        Jim softy
        October 13, 2014 at 9:33 pm
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          Which one of the above two do you mean?

          Rationalist
          October 14, 2014 at 5:33 am
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    Dharshanie: TG’s clientele are Members of the LTTE rump, when Velu was living TG talked for Tamil homeland, and the other group christians/Catholics who want to build their Kingdom/vatican in Sri Lanka. Even TG is supportive to ISLAM than to Buddhism (because, buddhism says that there is no Creator). Forget the war between Islam and christianity. Both those religions talk about almighty even though each other’s almighty and each says that one’s almighty is the truest one and not the other’s one. TG is a socialist who grew up in Colombo -7. They went to schools that taught the anglican values. So, her Buddhism is not the original Buddhism. Only thing she learned was English. So, most probably single in life, she is using bashing Buddhism, Sinhala buddhists, and Rajapakses to earn her living. Christians/muslims and Tamils want buddhists to be true buddhists. Because, they know True Buddhists are DODO birds which are waiting to be shot, killed and eaten by the ship-wrecked sailors on the island shores. That is why these MIGRENTS and PEOPLE VALUING THE FOREIGN CULTURES – Christians, Catholics, Buddhist-christians, Muslims, Tamil-christians/catholics want Buddhists to be true-buddhists. Then it is easy to convert Sri Lanka to a christian country or to a Islamic country. Now, some say, Catholicism is the fast spreading religion in Sri Lanka. Because, both the governing party and the opposition are Catholics. Even Lord Buddha knew that buddhism was a difficult to practice religion. That is why there are different disciplinary codes to lay people and to Sangha. Sangha-disciplinary code is most strictest. Every one knows that even an EIGHT YEAR OLD can understand buddhism. But, even an EIGHTY OLD can not practice Buddhism in full. That is why buddhists needed one whole samasara to realize the englightenment. Until the end of Samsara they do wrong things. Every buddhist knows that. These christians/Catholics/Muslims and Tamils want buddhists to be true buddhists and realize the Enlighten in this very life. Because, then their job of conversion is very easy and there won’t be BBS like organizations to disturb their work.

    Jim softy
    October 12, 2014 at 10:53 pm
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      I have my doubts, Buddha intended Buddhism to be practised as a religion. He preached a set of doctrines for his followers to live by, in effect a philosophy. What probably began as a gesture of gratitude, in thanking him with an image representing him, seems to have evolved into the image itself becoming sacred and over the years, devotees adding more and more outragous beliefs into the image. Today we have the likes of Gnanasera Thera justifying assaulting non-Buddhists in the name of Buddhism.

      Sylvia Haik
      October 19, 2014 at 9:40 pm
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    I agree with you . If you have learned the Dhamma , it is clear a constant thread of pragmatism that is against Dogma runs through it . that is what makes is so amazing . Didnt king kosala actually kill the sakyas in war during Buddhas time ? Cheers Abhaya

    Abhaya
    October 13, 2014 at 12:16 am
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      Abhaya: You are suspicious about you are talking. Besides, You talk things you don’t know. Talk about how Jews double crossed another VIP Jew. At least that may carry you to the promised land in the desert from your present mother land Sinhale.

      Jim softy
      October 13, 2014 at 1:00 am
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        er what ? Cheers Abhaya

        Abhaya
        October 13, 2014 at 3:29 am
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    By the way , dont bother about [Edited out] Thisaranee. She , he or it [Edited out] Cheers Abhaya

    Abhaya
    October 13, 2014 at 12:20 am
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      What an idiot who proves to know nothing beyond licking Rajapakshe asses. But the days ahead will be not easy for the idiots of Rajapakshes, nor will there be reelection. Even if reelection would be through stohlen.. his existence will not be there longer looking at the history of the leaders of his grade ended up.

      Leelagemalli
      October 13, 2014 at 12:47 am
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    Dharshanie, Honour killings can never be accepted by the followers of Ahimsa.You are treading on a very questionable path.What you quote were not written during the life time of the Lord Budddha.If the wife committed adultery the question why she did so must be questioned.Was is due to inadequacy on the part of the husband.Why not quote chapter and verse on the husbands being punished for not being faithful.This is perversion of the Buddha’s teachings.What if the husband was a puswedilla?

    Adrian Perera
    October 13, 2014 at 9:36 am
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      speaking with experience . Cheers Abhaya

      Abhaya
      October 13, 2014 at 5:39 pm
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        Speaking with experience? It should be speaking from experience kind regards ken

        ken Robert
        October 13, 2014 at 11:18 pm
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          are you ?

          Abhaya
          October 15, 2014 at 6:20 am
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          ken Robert bla bl-Abhaya is only a Sinhala/Buddhist ordinary engineer. Please be kind to him. I am planning to propose his name to the Nobel Prize committee for Literature, next year, and every year after 2015. Don’t you think it is the least we could do to massage little islanders humongous ego?

          Native Vedda
          October 15, 2014 at 1:09 pm
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    Darshanie, If you feel so strongly about Tissaranee’s articles, why don’t you comment on them? Then you can debate with her and your readers.

    Dr Romesh Senewiratne-Alagaratnam
    October 14, 2014 at 7:03 am
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    Ah, but how underdeveloped we are in mind and action – you included Darshanie. How easily you justify biased rules of law. Why not kill the adulterer also. ‘Adultery’ ‘honor killing’, ‘judicial killing’ – how easily we drag ourselved into the dark ages when we should have interred such concepts along with the Buddha. How horrible Darshanie, that you are trying to find clauses and causes from suspect ancient tracts, to justify present day killing by your heroes the Rajapaksas and the BBS.

    BBS Rep
    October 14, 2014 at 8:17 am
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      “How horrible Darshanie that you are trying to find clauses and causes from suspect ancient tracts, to justify present day killing by your heroes …” Well Said BBS, The question is, does the Pali texts of the Theravada Buddhist scriptures represent the oldest traditions which approach the actual teachings of the Buddha or some spurious doctrines have been introduced along with it by the authors and translators. As a result, guileful people like Darshanie Ratnawalli are trying to rope in suspect ancient tracts to misinterpret Buddhism for the purpose of justifying the use of force and violence. Force and violence in any form, under any pretext whatsoever, is absolutely against the teaching of the Buddha. Chapter 10 of the Dhammapada states: “Everyone fears punishment; everyone fears death, just as you do. Therefore do not kill or cause to kill. Everyone fears punishment; everyone loves life, as you do. Therefore do not kill or cause to kill”. As far as punishment in this world is concerned, Buddhism has strong views: • inhumane treatment of an offender does not solve their misdeeds or those of humanity in general – the best approach to an offender is reformatory rather than punitive • punishment should only be to the extent to which the offender needs to make amends, and his rehabilitation into society should be of paramount importance • punishing an offender with excessive cruelty will injure not just the offender’s mind, but also the mind of the person doing the punishing • it is impossible to administer severe punishment with composure and compassion • if the crime is particularly serious, the person may be banished/separated from the community or country

      Dharmapala
      October 15, 2014 at 11:16 am
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    Darshanie Ratnawalli is crazy and needs to attend counseling. If she doesn’t want any comments or feedbacks from the readers, why the hell is she publishing her dummy articles? She wants others to read her article and also praise at the same time. People who praise her by reading this article are also dummy fools.

    People
    October 14, 2014 at 10:12 am
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    Thought that the Budha foresaw the dumb assed mis interpretation of his teachings and wanted his followers to themselves as the Ratnawallis are dime a dozen.

    Kirri Yakka
    October 14, 2014 at 12:36 pm
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    Kiri Yakka. How true you are. Our generation had been inundated with fabrications by the buggers in safron, stories concocted to serve themelves

    Andrayas Appu
    October 14, 2014 at 3:13 pm
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    Jim Softy: Your conclusion about my religious background is mistaken. I am in fact a born- and raised- and practicing buddhist who happened to be born into a Sinhalese-speaking family. I do agree with AVB in that there are certain human characteristics that are universal regardless of religion. THose mentioned by AVB are some examples. However that does not mean that everything that has been documented in the name of a religion (its doctrine if you will) is applicable across all times and all cultures. The Buddha is also supposed to have said everything is impermanent (anitya). Thus even conclusions/judgments made by founders of religions might change as well. THe only constant in this world is change, according to my understanding of buddhism. I think if instead of arguing what the buddha/monks siad/did or did not do, each of us should focus on what we say/do and the consequences of these actions – karma in other word. For me, trying to understand my motivations for actions and living a life that I define as good and humane is more important than believing lock, stock and barrell on what some one else said sometime back. This level of skepticism is exactly what the Buddha is supposed to have supported as highlighted in the oft-reapeated saying “there’re 10,000 doors, mine is but only one of those”. I practice buddhism according to my understanding and my judgement of what I have, and continue to learn. I have studied pali for 3 years by the way Jim Softy. That undestanding informs me that focus should be on understanding my mind, its workings and project the loving kindness I strive to receive from others onto my self, and to treat others with the same loving kindness. This is a tough task, especially in a world where people are up in arms in the name of religion or ethnicity. Where others judge you negatively not because of your own actions, but of the label that’s attached to you (either ethnicity or religion). My belief in buddhism tells me that these lables, like all else, are impermanent. And getting all riled up in the name of religion and ethnicity is futile in the long term of my samskara. So what should I do in THIS life, the only life I know that I have? Live in the present, the Buddha is supposed to have said. Mindfulness in all you do, as you do them. THis is what yoga or meditation is about, not little kids being forced to don white and close their eyes and let their minds wander. Trying to live life in such a manner as to not harm others or myself being mindful of consequences of my actions is the best lesson I have gotten from buddhism. When I practice that, I feel a need to understand people who are different from me, to try and empathize with their fears, longings, happiness. It’s in that spirit that I try to engage with commentators and writers on CT, where racism abounds. Trying to get to the core issues of fear is important to me, because I believe that fear is the cause of hatred (racial, ethnic, religious etc), and thus cessation of that fear is peace.

    sinhalese buddhist
    October 14, 2014 at 10:40 pm
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    I think most of the commentators are in error in taking Ratnavalli’s essay as a scholarly response to Tissaranee Gunasekera’s article.Far from this being true,Ratnavalli is laying the ideological basis for the next war against the Muslims and perhaps even against the resurgent Tamils — not to speak of the Christians.Make no mistake:this war is coming.

    stanislaus
    October 15, 2014 at 8:05 am
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      stanislaus You are mistaken. We love fun that’s the only reason as to why we type here.

      Native Vedda
      October 16, 2014 at 6:25 am
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        Fun-da-mental is a very well coined phrase of a word, now I understand. Hail Veddah!

        Fundraiser
        November 2, 2014 at 3:42 pm
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