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Beware the fake Buddhists - SL prime minister

Sri Lanka's president Mahinda Rajapaksa has commenced a programme for the  "propragation" of Buddhism to countries that do not currently practise it announced Sri Lanka's prime minister, D. M. Jayaratne  on Saturday.

Warning of the "uncertainty" caused by people pretending to be Buddhists, Jayaratne emphasised the "constitutional guarantee" the president had for the protection and foster of Buddhism.  

The comments were made at Jayaratne's Vesak message delivered on Saturday: 

“I seriously believe that in a country where the majority are Buddhists by birth we are passing through a period of uncertainty where we are confronted with the task of differentiating between the genuine Buddhists and pretenders.

We, followers of a supreme sacred religion that preaches the Hethu Palaya (the cause and effect) and Karma Palaya (results of a deed) which help one to attain Nibbana, need not generate greed for anything mundane or spiritual. It was only a Buddhist who could act with tolerance and respect towards other religions demonstrating the noble qualities of equality and harmony. This was the essence of the great teachings of The Buddha. In a country where we find a leader who has realised this deep reality, as Buddhists the task ahead of us is manifold for the eternal existence of Buddhism.

“In keeping with the constitutional guarantee for protection and foster Buddhism the steps taken by the President for the uplift of the Buddha Sasana is praiseworthy.

“Encouraging parents to ordain children in the Sasana granting special allowance to temples where over seven Samanaras are resident, granting financial assistance to 773 viharas for development work, developing 2,600 Daham Pasals island-wide, granting of a donation of Rs. 100 million to the Asgiri Vihara on its completion of 700 years after establishment could be cited as a few examples among many programmes undertaken by this government for the protection of Buddha Sasana.

"According to the introduction of the United Nations Organization, Buddhism is a religion with a philosophy that fosters peace and harmony among mankind. Therefore the United Nations has declared Vesak Poya Day as an International Holiday."

"Apart from that I believe that this is the most appropriate moment to mention the extensive programme commenced by the President for the propagation of Buddhism in countries where Buddhism is not practiced. Besides, to be inwardly a Buddhist, to be a well disciplined monk with a thorough knowledge of the Dhamma and to lead a religious life are the noblest of all.

"May your lives be relieved of pain and suffering on this noble day of birth, enlightenment and Parinirwana of The Buddha”.

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