The Greedy Buddha – a name for the restaurant that insults all Buddhists
Posted on November 28th, 2010

Pandula Ranatunga

Proprietor
The Greedy Buddha
144 Wandsworth Bridge Road, Fulham, London. SW6 2UH
Tel. 020-7751 3311

Dear proprietor,

I was passing through Wandsworth Bridge Road in Fulham recently and to my horror my wondering eye fixed on to something so appalling, which was the name of your restaurant, “Greedy Buddha”. I am a Buddhist myself, and like millions of other Buddhists all around the world who worships Lord Buddha and follow his sacred teachings, I was shocked and saddened by your insensitivity and sheer audacity to choose a name for your restaurant that insults all Buddhists. I am sure whoever the imbecile came up with this name thought that this is a cool and hip thing. But if anyone who has an ounce of knowledge on this great religion and its master would know how wrong and appalling this is.

The truth of the matter is that the basic Buddha’s teaching is based on giving up all worldly pleasures and materials, and finally reaching the ultimate bliss of Nirvana. The Buddha is someone who conquered the world giving up all desires including greed and lust. A religion that began 2570 years ago in India and is still growing in popularity by the day in this materialistic obsessed world is by all accounts phenomenal, but for anyone to interpret that in to something so vile and cheap as your restaurant name, I find it nauseating and heart breaking.

For us Buddhists, the Lord Buddha and his teachings are quite sacred and we revered them all throughout our lives. We hold them in a very high place in our hearts and minds. So for us to see his life and teachings being mocked for the sake of financial gains is quite disturbing. We as Buddhist today all over the world are fighting a losing battle to save the Buddha’s image from being exploited and used in an offensive and demeaning manner without any regard whatsoever to those millions of people who worship Buddha and our religion. This irresponsible attitude is mostly due to ignorance. I am sure you wouldn’t use the name Allah or Jesus Christ in this manner as we all know the repercussions will be quite drastic. I think this is mainly because Buddhists are regarded as passive, peace loving and non-confrontational people, and thus always being taken for granted. In Buddhist temples and in our homes, a statue of Lord Buddha is placed up in a higher place and we offer flowers and worship and pay homage every day, so to see Lord Buddha’s image being used in a such a callous manner is not only quite demeaning but also sacrilegious.

On behalf of all Buddhists, I appeal to you that you change this tasteless name of your restaurant. Please show some sensitivity those who have different beliefs to you. I would also contact International Buddhist Council on this as this will certainly be an issue to them. Out of respect to all Buddhists, please change this offensive name.

I look forward to hearing from you.

Regards

Mr. Pandula Ranatunga

 

14 Responses to “The Greedy Buddha – a name for the restaurant that insults all Buddhists”

  1. Nihal Fernando Says:

    Why these bastards always insult Buddha and Buddhism by using Greedy Buddha, Buddha Bar, etc.? One wake board company in America was using NIRVANA as their brand name on their wake boards. After I pointed out that it was wrong and disrespectful to use that word they immediately changed it.

    These Christians and Catholics drink wine saying it is Jesus’s juice. Eating meat saying it is Jesus’s flesh. They also have cocktail called Bloody Mary. When they insult their own religion they just do not bother about the feelings of the other followers.

  2. kosala Says:

    It is indeed appalling to see how the systematic destruction of Buddhism & Lord Buddha’s teaching taking place all around the world.. even in our mother land it is happening..Remember the Tsunami in 2004, just before the DAY.. some christians in some parts of the Island had burnt wax mad buddha Statutes & set a sail to the sea, chanting.. Buddha is finally going deep out to the sea etc… but what happened the following day, same people who have chanted & insulted had to face the destruction…. We Believe in the Noble triple gem, which protects us & there’s no other teaching from a higher authority ever existed or existing in this world..like the teaching of Buddha… Buddha was a human just like you & me who lived a normal life & saw the true path to freedom called Nirvana, which brings happiness & solace… No other spiritual beliefs teaches us that… Anyways as we are a more compassionate lot ,we should show nothing but sympathy to those who cannot u’stand the philosophy of true buddhism…

    May the triple gem blesses us all!! Kosala…

  3. M.S.MUdali Says:

    What are we doing in Sri Lanka? Buddha and Buddhism are used to get political power or money. Just imagine how our monks behave? Now monks are running behind the dollars!

  4. mjaya Says:

    Hi M.S.MUdali

    Since you are a “Hindu Tamil” why not talk about how Hinduism is used to enforce an inhuman caste system in India and among the Tamils of Sri Lanka first? Also how talking about the use of Hinduism in the Kali Kovila to kill innocent animals? How about exploitation of innocent Hindus by charlatans posing as Gurus and Bagawans? Lets not forget about the notorious “Dowry Killings” as well!

    Worry about the problems of followers of other religions after that.

  5. Fran Diaz Says:

    It is either the ignorant, the ignoble or simply trouble makers who would put up such a sign post at a restaurant. Lankans in UK should send in a Petition of Protest to the Ministry concerned with a copy of it to the members of the Royal Family. There should be Laws in UK to prohibit such signs against the image of any of the Great Masters. Wither British justice ? And what is our Ambassador to UK doing on this matter ? Buddhists worldwide, awaken !

  6. cassandra Says:

    Nihal Fernando, you should not jump to the conclusion that this is necessarily the work of Christians. I note that the advertising sign also reads ‘Real Nepalese food’. So, it could be that the restaurant is Nepalese owned.

    That consideration aside, it is wholly unacceptable for the use of the name of the Buddha on a commercial sign. I cannot understand how people can be unaware that the use of the names of holy people of whatever religion, in this sort of way, would give offence. Not so long ago we had a Danish newspaper publishing cartoons that were offensive to the Muslims.

    I believe that in Britain the use of words like ‘Royal’ and ‘Imperial’ is protected by law. Perhaps, it is time that the use of names that are holy to people of different faiths is similarly ‘regulated’.

  7. M.S.MUdali Says:

    mjaya:
    Till Ossey Corea was alive, he was the master of the ceremony in Munneswaram Kali Kovil. Dont you know it?

    Who are the Karawas, Govigamas, Mohottilas, Navandennes, Parawas, kinnarayas, Batgamas, Salagamas, Rodiyas, Berawas, Duravas and many other cstes in Sri lanka? Are you telling all these people HINDUS because of the CASTE they belong?

    How is the following?

    Wife set on fire for refusing to allow
    her face superimposed on local porn girl’s pictures
    November 28, 2010, 9:42 pm

    By Jayantha de Silva

    A 23-year-old woman, who had been struggling for her life at the National Hospital for nearly six weeks after being doused with kerosene and set on fire by her husband in the Seeduwa police area, succumbed to her injuries last Wednesday (Nov. 24).

    The police told an inquest into her death before City Coroner Edward Ahangama that the suspect, who had been given bail, was missing. It transpired at the inquest that there had been constant quarrels between the victim and her husband due to the latter trying to superimpose her face on pornographic pictures of a local woman posted on the internet.

    The Coroner held the inquest into the death of Hene Mudiyanselage Dilka Maduwanthi, a resident of Thalathelawewa, Senapura in Nikkaweratiya.

    Hene Mudiyanselage Nandawathi, the mother of the deceased in her evidence said that her daughter had passed the GCE (A/L) and then eloped with suspect Dhananjaya Adikari.

    She alleged that the suspect was unemployed and addicted to heroin. The couple had lived in suspect’s residence, she said, adding that there had been frequent quarrels as the husband wanted to superimpose the victim’s face on local female porn actress’s pictures. When the victim refused to let him do so, the suspect had poured kerosene oil on her and ordered her to burn herself to death.When she refused to commit suicide, he had set her on fire and fled.

    The victim had been rushed to the Negombo Hospital and later to the National Hospital, where she died.

    Assistant Judicial Medial Officer K. K. Joozar, who performed the post mortem, said that cause of her death was infections due to burn injuries.
    Further inquiry was put off till Dec. 11.

  8. mjaya Says:

    Hi M.S.MUdali,

    “Munneswaram” well thats one place where you cannot deny the Tamil etymology!!

    The Sinhalese caste system is based upon ones profession. In fact it is incorrect to call it a “caste system”. At one time Karawas were fishermen, Govigamas were farmers, Halagamas cultivated cinnoman, Kumbal people made pottary etc.. The same type of system existed in many Asian countries including Japan (were the Burakumin or people who worked in slaughter houses and other meat related professions were discriminated even during the 20th century).

    Isn’t the Hindu caste system different? based upon how people were created from different places of the creator??

    Well, the difference between your community and our community is simple. We have progressed out of these tribal values. You never hear about a Karava being beaten to death for sitting next to a Govigama in a bus or vise versa. Similarly you never hear of a Sinhalese person being beaten to death for entering a Law College (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GdaZLZByi30).

    As for the case of a drug addict killing his wife, just do not forget where the pornographic capital of South Asia is!

    Female patients beware! (http://www.indianexpress.com/news/sex-doctor-found-guilty-in-cyber-porn-case/270072/)

    So again Mudali, stop worrying about the faults of others and worry about the faults in your own community first!

  9. jimmy Says:

    My brothers
    Pray to Jesus for peace , love and compassion

    Give up idol worship

    Surrender to God . it is not too late folks

    It is so shame people fight , complain , hate each other . We all live in this world for short time and so much hatred so much hatred
    SriLanka is a small country but I am shocked how people behave and write things which are so horrible

  10. M.S.MUdali Says:

    mjaya:
    The same kind of incidents happened in 1983. Victims were Tamils. Are the Sinhalese following Indians?

    I also tell you worry about your own first.

  11. mjaya Says:

    Hi M.S.MUdali (aka Francis Xavier :D)

    1983 was a despicable act which I ALWAYS CONDEMN. No two words about it. Just don’t forget how many Sinhalese people actually saved innocent Tamils by hiding them in their houses at a great risk to their own lives. Most of the people who did killed innocent Tamils were government sponsored thugs and also don’t forget that at the time the police chief who was a Tamil himself (Rudra Rajasingham) did nothing effective to stop the violence.

    I am just curious to know if you will condemn the violence inflicted upon innocent Sinhalese civilians in Jaffna during the race riots of 1977 instigated by Chelvanayagam? (as found by the Sansony Commission)

  12. kosala Says:

    It is indeed nice to have this forum to discuss every one’s ideas opinions & the way an individual feels about a certain subject… Where we go wrong is when we start to sling mud at each & every one… One does not become a True Sinhala Or true Tamil just because he is born to a respective family.. Discriminations begin there… If a baby is born to a Sinhala family then he is majority & vice versa.. Do not forget the fact, we are born & re-born according to the Karma, What ever belief we had or what ever actions we have carried out in our past life will take us where we belong to the next life… So If anyone is feeling that, he/she is imortal & even in the next life also will be the same, then it’s highly mistaken…

    Any Sinhala person can be re-born to a tamil family & vice versa….. It is a matter of time, until we see the true path to freedom, So Study onself hard before we comment on any one else… On the point of Using Buddah name on a restaurant is indeed not acceptable for us Buddhists but It is not Immoral…One should know, this particular restaurant is run presumably by Nepalese.. The Irony is that… The Lord Buddha was born in that country & there are many Buddhists who values Buddha as a GReat Human being… Anyone ignorant or wanting to harm his image or teaching, may do so, as there’s always a “Reaction for any action” Even Buddha himself never stopped anyone to do anything in his life time.. All what he taught us to be better in our lives by getting rid of our own greed & gluttony.. If we can achieve that, then we have achieved most of it… So just using his name will not Harm Buddhists or Buddhism now or ever….. Remember a few years ago…. Taliban destroyed bamian Buddha statutes as they could nt stand the fact, that seeing the Buddha standing in that country… What happend!! Not only those who did that, but people who condoned their acts have perished.. & still their miserable acts are being punished.. Every action has it’s re-action folks..

    take it easy…. Dont look at the sign board next time you pass that restaurant.. just look the other side & have compassion towards the people who are flaunting it…” Dhamma padaya” Show your compassion & empathy

  13. M.S.MUdali Says:

    What happened to the report of the Sansoni commission?

    One Sinhala female nurse from Trinco hospital told the commission that she knows more than the Tamil surgen who married a Sinhala woman.

    Further the evidences of the Sinhalese in Jaffna became false.

    One guy lied that Mrs. Amirthalingam wanted to make shoe from the skins of the Sinhalese. This kind of evidences from Sinhalese are good evidences how Sinhalese are engulfed with RACIST or NAZI ideology.

  14. KingSasanka Says:

    A mail doing rounds with a heading “The Greedy Buddha Restaurant” somewhere in the United Kingdom with a couple of pictures of it and a passionate appeal written to the owner of the establishment by a shocked Buddhist, who discovered it recently.
    Should the Buddhists be alarmed of this development?
    No!
    First, the name itself is self-defeating.
    Because the word “Buddha” means the” Enlightened One” and no enlightened one can be greedy.
    The Gautama Buddha was the second in the long line of Teachers who have shunned the idea of idol worshipping and it was almost 500 years after the passing away of this great teacher that the erection of statues took roots in the Buddhist culture.
    Buddhism teaches you to find your own salvation and the Nirvana is not a place where one can go but is a status of mind.
    The intention of choosing such an eye catching name is to get an instant attention, and then the owner of the establishment is quite successful, given the attention it gets on the internet.
    If the reason is ignorance, insult or both, then the owner has done a great favour to those who believe that they are follower of that faith.
    Tolerance and compassion are the whole marks of the Buddha’s teaching and in a world where the tolerance is the least priority; such an act would only helps the believers to truly test their core believes.
    Blasphemy was a word that has come to our vocabulary much later and has no true meaning to it, except to cover up one’s own weaknesses and blames and shames another for one’s own failings and inadequacies.
    No ordinary person can shame an Enlightened One and if anyone believes that it is possible, then there is something faulty in his or her thinking faculty.
    “Lokha Samastha Sukino Bawanthu”.

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