Case of a modern day Arahant – I
Posted on September 30th, 2017

By Rohana R. Wasala

September 14, 2017

There is no doubt that Buddhists were shocked and pained  and gravely upset by what Ven. Samanthabhadra  Thera recently said about two of the most venerated objects of Buddhist worship in the country: the Dantha Dhatu or the Sacred Tooth Relic and the Lalata Dhatu or the Sacred Frontal Bone Relic, both believed by them to be those of the Buddha. During acts of worship, these sacred relics make the devout Buddhist worshippers feel as if the Buddha were  before them in flesh and blood. But Ven. Samanthabhadra Thera remarked that the first is a tooth of a wild boar, and that the second is a seashell. He further said that the foolish devotees worshipping these things will be reborn as mala perethayo” (a class of manes in local Buddhist belief born into a state of misery) for what he called this foolish superstitious practice (of worshipping what he  alleges to be animal bones). He also referred the lay official in charge of the Tooth Relic as ‘mala perethaya’). This information is from a You Tube video recently posted by Siri Sadaham Ashramaya, where the maverick monk resides.

Ven. Samanthabhadra Thera styles himself as an Arahant.  It is well known that the monk who now appears by that name was ordained, and until a few years back known, as Pitiduwe Siridhamma. Of course, if he is really what he says he is, only he will know it. But are we obliged to take his word for it? Certainly not! Accepting anything on mere report or hearsay or scriptural authority without experiential evidence is not the Budddhist way as explained in the Kalama Sutta. In this case, Buddhists/or other interested observers must look for external signs (evidence) of his Arahanthood to convince themselves of the authenticity of his claim. I don’t mean that he must possess miraculous powers that some simple unsophisticated ordinary Buddhists attribute to Arahaths in popular tradition such as alleged abilities of clairvoyance, mind reading, magical aerial transportation etc. Instead, one should look for characteristic behaviours of his that convince us that he is a person who has annihilated the illusion of self and put a final end to samsaric suffering.  Though he could have attained that state for all we know, his recent actions and speeches in the course of his normal religious ministry leave at least some of us sceptical about his claims.

At the very outset, I’d like to kindly remind my readers that, as usual, my attitude as an essayist or newspaper columnist  can be simply expressed thus: ‘This is what I think about this matter, i.e.,  here, the case of Ven. Samanthabhadra Thera,  and these are my reasons for  my opinion. What do you think, if you happen to take an interest in the subject?’ My personal belief is that jointly searching after the truth in any situation is socially beneficial and individually satisfying, promoting the central goal of Buddhism: social harmony and individual happiness (an idea articulated to me by a Buddhist scholar I personally know, who, I believe will prefer not to be named, because he is least concerned with name and fame or selfhood). I am mindful of the fact that by some of my readers I could be reduced to the position of one among ‘Fools (who) rush in where angels fear to tread’ as the early 18th century English poet Alexander Pope wrote. He was writing ‘An Essay on Criticism’ (1711) about good literary criticism and bad. I am here applying it to a critical characterization of a controversial personage who is important to us  which I am indulging in at present, but I don’t feel like a fool at all.

I have the highest regard for Ven. Samanthabhadra’s scientific attitude to Buddhism. His incisive, analytical explanation of the Dhamma to the average Buddhist upasaka upasikas (male and female followers of the Buddha Dhamma) in simple clear language is admirable. His criticism of popular Buddhism in Sri Lanka as a false deviant version of the original teaching of the Buddha is a valid one. That there are avaricious, corrupt, worldly monks who resist a reestablishment of the true Buddhist way of life among themselves and their followers is also a fact. My focus here, however, is the undesirability of the monk’s bull in a china shop behavior (as seen in his indiscriminate attack on fellow bhikkhus  and the Mahanayake Theras among whom many, I believe, are as virtuous and as erudite as he is himself) which ultimately is bound to defeat his purpose. There is no question about the need to reform these aspects of the Buddhasasana. But it is up to the Maha Sangha themselves to set things right in a non-political religiously acceptable manner without letting well intentioned lone monks play the role of the skilled physician, called upon to cure a person suffering from indigestion, who boasted, when his patient died during his treatment: Although my patient died, he purged well”!  My friends who disagree with me are kindly invited to produce counter arguments to demolish mine.

According to Ven. Dr Walpola Rahula Thera, an unrivalled authority on both Theravada and Mahayana Buddhism, an Arahant  is one who is free from all fetters, defilements and impurities through the realization of Nirvana in the fourth and final stage, and who is free from rebirth” (‘What the Buddha Taught’ {First published by Gordon Fraser, London, 1959; but I am using here the 2006 edition of the book published by the Buddhist Cultural Centre, Dehiwala, Sri Lanka} p. 142. This is the most comprehensive yet succinct treatise on Buddhism that I have read). Verse 92 of Dhammapada as translated by Indian monk Ven. Sri Archarya Buddharakkhita (1922-2013)describes ‘The Perfected Ones’ (Arahants) as

 ‘Those who do not accumulate

and are wise regarding food,

whose object is the Void,

the Unconditioned Freedom –

their track cannot be traced,

like that of birds in the air.’,

where the translator elucidates accumulate as also including accumulation of kamma, and food as referring to physical nutriment, sensory impressions, volitional activity and rebirth consciousness, all of which feed the process of continued existence. In his translation of the Dhammapada, German oriental scholar F. Max Muller (1823-1900) defines ‘the Void, the Unconditioned Freedom’  of Verse 92 as ‘Nirvana’.

The illusory I” consciousness, the illusion of self/soul/ego, is a great source of the unsatisfactoriness of life according to the Buddhist teaching. An Arahat has completely eliminated the erroneous sense of self. But, to me it appears (my observation could be wrong, of course) that Ven. Samanthabhadra constantly shows a deep preoccupation with himself (egoism), in fact, egotism, the notion that he is superior to all others. How could he celebrate his birthday, calling it an alms giving though, in the form of a buffet lunch with flower-bedecked uniform-clad young women in attendance, with a vast array of dishes to choose from including a ‘pork curry’ (to which he drew special attention), a far cry from a simple frugal meal that bhikkhus (mendicant monks) would be normally satisfied with, particularly at a time when many poor people of the country fail to properly feed their children most days? This is puzzling to me as it must to many others as well. If such behavior were found in an ordinary person, I’d have wondered: ‘Could there be something gone wrong here?’ But such a notion about Ven. Samanthabhadra Thera, of such spiritual attainments, is inconceivable.

The reason is this: My observation reminded me of something I read in neuroscientist and student of Buddhism Dr Sam Harris’s book ‘Waking Up: Searching for spirituality without religion’(Transworld Publishers, London, September 2014); he claims that he has done meditation, including vipassana meditation taught in Buddhism, for many years. (Incidentally, Ven. Samanthabhadra often stresses the importance of this form of Buddhist meditation for final Emancipation and communicates to us a lucid practical explanation of the subject.) The book has some valuable advice for serious practitioners of meditation. It warns them about the danger of pathological responses to meditation occurring, a field where little research has been done, as he points out. Dr Harris thinks that this is something that both teachers and students of meditation should guard against. Buddhist scholars are not unaware of this danger. Ven. Dr Walpola Rahula Thera devotes one whole chapter of the aforementioned book to the subject of meditation: Chapter VII ‘Meditation’ or Mental Culture: Bhavana’ (pp. 67-75). The chapter begins with a statement of the Buddha, which says that there are two kinds of illness in the world, physical and mental, and that although there seem to be people who stay physically healthy for one or two or even for a hundred or more years, few in this world are free from mental illness even for a moment, except those who are free from mental defilements (i.e., Arahants). The chapter spells out the prescribed way for meditation that forestall pathological responses (though of course, Dr Harris’s phraseology is not anticipated there).

Ven. Samanthabhadra Thera used to be a very popular preacher in the past as Pitiduwe Siridhamma Himi. He has been claiming for a few years now that he has attained Arahanthood which is the highest stage of spiritual attainment in Buddhism and it is identical with the attainment of the ultimate Nibbanic bliss. Nibbana is the summum bonum of Buddhism.  Unlike in other religions, one does not have to die before one can attain that state of perfect happiness that the realization of the Ultimate Reality brings. Ven. Samanthabhadra Thera also  says in a You Tube video that I watched  that he is ‘inebriated with the Dhamma’, meaning that he has studied it thoroughly and imbibed all the doctrinal information it contains. It is more than obvious that he sincerely believes that he has achieved a perfect understanding of the Dhamma. For sure many other monks and lay Buddhists can justifiably make the same claim. Yet his extraordinary Arahanthood claim is problematic because his behavior shows signs, which, in an ordinary lay person, would be interpreted as symptoms of a serious personality disorder. But in the case of Ven. Samanthabhadra Thera, I hasten to add, such a diagnosis is out of the question, is in fact, utterly unthinkable.

Buddhism can be variously defined as a form of practical psychology, an ethical philosophy, a science-based conceptual analysis of human existence, and a religion free from god-belief and mysticism. Buddhism is Buddhism. It is unique. It cannot be totally identified with any of the above. In popular practice, though, it has the three basic distinguishing elements of a religion: a unique worldview, a system of rituals, and a prescribed way for achieving spiritual perfection. The last characteristic of a religion (the way to perfection) in Buddhism takes the form of transformative enlightenment about the truth of change and suchness…” . Here I am appropriating American Professor Robert Cummings Neville’s ideas about religion, arbitrarily applying them to Buddhism. The phrase quoted is from him. Professor Neville (b. 1939), Emeritus, Boston University School of Theology, is philosopher, theologian, and Confucian scholar among other things. Ven. Ajahn Sumedho Thera, American monk of the Thai Forest Tradition of Thai Theravada Buddhism, defines suchness in Buddhism Now website (November 21, 2014) as follows: Suchness, or Tathata, the Tathagata, is right now. This is the way it is. But sometimes, when I say, ‘This is the way it is,’ somebody will say, ‘You mean this is the way it is forever?’ No! RIGHT NOW — this is the way it is. The only way it can be is the way it is right now! It’s changing, but at this moment, the Suchness of this moment, is just this way. The thinking mind has to stop. Otherwise you will want to ask, ‘Where is it? What is he saying?’ You just have to stop your mind and listen, or watch. Then you will be relating to Suchness, the Suchness of the moment, the as-is-ness”.

Though the essence of Buddhism – the Four Noble Truths – is the same across the Buddhist world, there are numerous divisions of Buddhism as a religion, the three main ones being Theravada, Mahayana, and Vajrayana. (Even a Western version of Buddhism has developed over the recent decades.) Of these three, Theravada (which is found in such countries as Sri Lanka, Myanmar and Thailand) is considered  to be closest to the pristine form of Buddhism. These various sects developed in different lands over the centuries as Buddhism got acculturated to those alien societies. Now, Buddhist devotional rituals are culturally shaped. These must be maintained for the perpetuation or survival of Buddhism. A mere religious ideology, however  rational, however noble it may be, will not survive for long unless it is packaged in ritual observances. Ritual worship serves as a vehicle (medium) for the relevant religious ideology. Buddhism itself is safe from attack. What is to be protected is the Buddhasasana.

(The Island published two very interesting articles by Professor M.M.J. Marasinghe, formerly of the Department of Pali and Buddhist Studies, University of Kelaniya,  about the adulteration of Buddhism by Mahayana under the titles:  ‘The great betrayal of Theravada Buddhism?’and ‘The transistion from Buddhism to Beggism’ respectively on May 21, 2014 and August 3, 2016. I think one could quote these in support of Ven. Samanthabhadra’s arguments against certain elements of Buddhist ritual worship.)

Ritual worship (enacted through devotional offerings  or amisha puja, marking holy days, celebrating festivals, conducting peraheras, alms giving, and  observing age old traditions, etc.) contributes to making a religion a force for unifying a community, besides giving it a sense of emotional security. They also sustain and increase the piety of the adherents. It is due to amisha puja that Ven. Samanthabhadra conducts alms givings at his temple, is able to send his disciples on alms rounds so devotees perform amisha puja. The same responsible for the huge donations that the devout make towards the monk’s charitable projects. We are told that he is going to build the biggest Buddhist temple complex on a 50-acre land that has been donated by philanthropist.

The twin goal of Buddhism is creating empowering harmony for the society and enduring happiness for the individual. In ultimate terms, any religion is concerned with the ultimate fate of the individual. But what is the happiness of a single individual relative to that of a whole society? Ven. Samanthabhadra Thera’s outrageous attack on an important aspect of essential Buddhist devotional worship will be counterproductive. Instead of promoting Buddhism as the beautiful ethical-philosophical system (what the ordinary adherents follow, part as ritual, part as serious practice), the venerable thera’s sudden onslaught on relic worship is likely to endanger its very existence, particularly at a time like this when the country’s ancient Buddhist cultural heritage is being threatened in various ways.

The attainment of spiritual goals including the highest is strictly a personal matter that does not concern others, like regaining good health after an illness. If Ven. Samanthabhadra Thera has attained Arahanthood, it is for himself. It is none of our business. Other Buddhists need not initiate a personality cult centering on him, as he seems to be encouraging them to do (e.g., by erecting a statue of himself at his temple. This is something that most Buddhists cannot rationalize). Each individual must realize the Ultimate Truth for himself or herself.  But a person of high spiritual attainments can and usually does play a useful social role. Such a person inspires others to follow his or her example and to make the same achievements; he or she can teach and guide others, but the teacher and guide cannot make spiritual attainments for others. In Buddhism, there are no saviours, but only compassionate teachers and guides. Ven. Samanthabhadra Thera conducts himself as if he has attained to the status of the highest type of such teacher.

Yet , even if this self-assessment is true, he cannot be any more important to others than as a teacher and a mentor. However thoroughly steeped in the Dhamma he may be, however spiritually accomplished he may claim himself to be, and however sincere in his intentions he could be, what he felt provoked to say about the Tooth Relic and the Frontal Bone Relic is absolutely frivolous and unimaginably foolhardy. Ordinary Buddhists are not concerned about the authenticity of the relics they worship. If Ven. Samanthabhadra Thera was taken seriously by the average Buddhists (when he insulted both those objects of veneration and the worshippers who venerate them), he would have been consumed by  their outrage at what would be universally condemned as a sacrilegious speech, for  such an apparently baseless attack on the long established Buddhist devotional ritual of relic worship would be like touching an exposed high voltage electric cable with his bare hands. Fortunately for him, the average Buddhists are still patient with him. Buddhists traditionally respect the civaraya that the Buddha used to wear” (Don’t they call it Arahat dhajaya or Flag of Arahanthood”?).

However, on several occasions, groups of Buddhists staged protests against him, not because of their fault. They are now familiar with the subversive anti-Buddhist activities of certain fanatical religious groups that employ corrupt individuals with a smattering knowledge of Buddhism disguised as Buddhist monks, particularly active in remote village areas where poverty makes spirituality a secondary concern. It is natural that people tend to believe that this monk is also one of them, though personally I do not subscribe to that view at all (for his explanation of the Dhamma is compatible with a rational approach to it in spite of his controversial utterances, which are not unfounded, criticizing traditional Buddhist practices ). A couple of months ago, there was an incident at Piliyandala involving Ven. Samanthabhadra Thera, where the Buddha  civaraya (robe) he was wearing could barely save him from being manhandled. Some protesters who disapproved of his unorthodox style of preaching threw eggs at him, and nearly assaulted him, before the organizers of the Dharmadeshana (preaching) event managed to get him out of the place. I am painfully concerned that such things should happen in my predominantly Buddhist country. Wouldn’t  it be better if our venerable monk be wiser in his ministry? (To be concluded)

12 Responses to “Case of a modern day Arahant – I”

  1. Senerath Says:

    Let us not forget the fact that this Thera also declared ” a king should eat like a king” comparing Sirisena and Mahinda.
    Buddha always promoted simple way of life , for example in Karaniyametta sutta “Santussakocha subharocha appakichcho cha sallahukavutti” and our “ELECTED” Presidents and not KINGS but SERVANTS of people. Therefore it is essential for President’s to live like normal people, saving every possible dollar for the nation, not like “KINGS”. Why should they excuse themselves to take whole families and 100 people to USA and Europe , citizens should always question.

    There is a definite plan to reduce the influence of Buddhism to a level sustainable as a secular state.. This plan is the same for all current political parties, UNP,SLFP,JVP and the worse is the group called themselves JO who has their own decieving way of implementing it.

    Certain temples and shrines have great influence on Buddhists and it is natural for these enemies of nation to somehow make use of EXISTING BUDDHIST GRIVENCES to create a group of badly behaving monks thus enabling condemnation of Bikkhu Sangha which is our third of the “Tripple Gem”. Creating various preachers of Buddhism, mainly using investigating power of KALAMA SUTTA ( which was preached to KALAMAS and not Buddhists) to question traditional practices which help to enhance FAITH faculty ( Saddhaa) is also another way of attack.
    Therefore Buddhist should question the credibility of any writer who ask Buddhist to refer to Kalama Sutta. Kalama Sutta , in fact should be taught to people of all other religions, not Buddhists.

  2. helaya Says:

    I think tis monk is a fraud. When some one become Araat they do not say it. THat is one clue. Another thing is that evangelical who wants to destroy Buddhism in Sri Lanka first they wan to destroy Dalada Maligwa and other places of of worship. What they are trying to do is through some Desah Drohi fake monk like this guy. If you can investigate the finance of this guy you will find the root cause of this behavior.

  3. Ananda-USA Says:

    What disturbs me as a garden-variety devout Buddhist is not the Ven. Samanthabadra’s criticism of popular Buddhism as practiced in Sri Lanka, but the egoism he displays in arrogating to himself the status of an Arahat and building monuments to himself, given that we have been taught to believe that Arahats are devoid of egotism.

    Having said that, I note that the Lord Buddha himself made claims about gaining enlightenment that were disbelieved by many of his peers in his time, and generated enmity towards him as a result of it.

    To me the Lord Buddha was able to overcome that opposition and gain widespread acceptance only because of the logical consistency and cohesiveness of his intellectual arguments that withstood all challenges, and the openness of his approach, that underlay his simpler, more popular, teaching. In effect, he said: apply and examine for yourself the truth of my teaching. If true, practice it; if not reject it!

    Is Ven Samanthabadra doing a massive con-job on us Sri Lankans? Since Lord Buddha himself asked each of us to exercise our own intellect in deciding such issues, I have done so and have decided that it looks like a con-job to me!

    However, I should also caution that my reaction to Ven Samanthabadra is akin to reaction of disbelief and anger displayed by the Jewish religious leaders of Jerusalem who destroyed Jesus of Nazareth, when Jesus was “egotistic” in claiming that he was the Son of God. The religious establishment of his community seized upon this “display of arrogance” and caused him to be crucified for it.

    In a remarkable feat of grass roots propaganda using the Mass Media of his day, his committed followers managed to convert his death into a triumph by first making his body vanish, then claiming he was resurrected and had been seen by them after death, and finally that he rose into heaven as he himself had predicted to rejoin his father, God himself. To believers it is the God’s truth, and to disbelievers the biggest con-job in history. Which is it, really? Only God knows!

  4. Cerberus Says:

    According to Hinduism, there are 4 types of Yogis.
    1. Karma Yogi – Those who lose their concept of self in action.
    2. Bhakti Yogi – Those who lose their concept of self in devotion.
    3. Gnana Yogi – Those who lose their concept of self in analytical thought.
    4. Raja Yogi – Those who follow the highest path through meditation to gain salvation.

    To quote Swami Vivekananda ” Each soul is potentially Divine. The goal is to manifest this Divinity within by controlling nature external and internal. Do this either by work, or worship or psychic control or philosophy – by one, or more or all of these – and be free. This is the whole of religion, doctrines or dogmas, or rituals, or books, or temples, or forms, and but secondary details”

    According to each one’s Dharma (Nature) different paths. It is therefore not good to condemn others who are following different paths. As the Lord Buddha said each one is climbing up on their own path at their own speed. Eventually, they all meet at the same point in enlightenment. As the Dalai Lama said it is therefore good to have a policy of compassion towards all beings. I wonder where this priest is getting money for all his Buffet lunches etc. Are the NGO’s funding him to disrupt the Buddha Sasana? As the Lord Buddha said it is a grave sin to cause a schism in the Buddha Sasana.

  5. Senerath Says:

    @Ananda-USA

    You said “In effect, he said: apply and examine for yourself the truth of my teaching. If true, practice it; if not reject it!”.
    But Ananda, to whom do you remember the Blessed One said so ?. Can you please let me know which Sutta he said so Ananda ?
    Although we all know “Ehipassiko” ( come and see) quality of Dhamma we should not expand on it worngly. The Blessed One never doubted his own Dhamma to tell people to reject it.

  6. Dilrook Says:

    The timing raises many questions. Why now? Concerted multi-pronged attacks on Buddhism have increased. He is sadly part of it. He must respect authority and he cannot make derogatory statements about practices and hierarchy.

  7. Asanga Says:

    Dilrook,

    You have hit the nail on the head! ‘Multi-pronged’ attacks… ‘animal rights’ groups crying crocodile tears about elephants on parades, politicians apparently taking ‘errant’ monks to task by calling them Cheewaradhariyo, apparent Arhants like this Bhikku attacking (again) traditional Buddhist institutionalized beliefs.. and the list goes on…

  8. NeelaMahaYoda Says:

    He is a fake Arahath with full of lust for views, attachment, greed, and obsession with views. Even though an Arahath should have completely eradicated the concept of “I” or ego, this one always talking about him.

    He is a typical unenlightened worldling, who lacks correct insight into the true nature of things, at the stage of thought cognition is vitiated by the influence of papañca, a difficult Pali word best rendered as “conceptual proliferation.”[17] Instead of correctly comprehending the objects of perception, the deluded mind, infiltrated by papañca, spins out a complex mental commentary which embellishes things with the erroneous notions of “mine,” “I,” and “my self.” Thereby the person is overrun by “perceptions and notions tinged by mental proliferation” (papañcasaññasankha).

    We had similar Bikkhus during Buddha’s time also.

    The Venerable Mahakatyayana, Mahakaccana and in Japanese as Kasennen, is one of the “Ten Disciples of the Buddha”. He was foremost in explaining Dharma. The Venerable Maha Kaccana seems to have had a particularly deep insight into the causal basis of human quarrels and disputes.

    On another occasion (Anguttara Nikaya 2:4:6) a brahman named Aramadanda came to him and asked: “Why is society rent by such bitter conflicts — conflicts that pit nobles against nobles, brahmans against brahmans, householders against householders?” To this the elder replies: “It is because of sensual lust, attachment, greed, and obsession with sensual pleasures, that nobles fight with nobles, brahmans with brahmans, householders with householders.”

    Next Aramadanda asked: “Why is it that recluses fight with recluses?”

    And Maha Kaccana replies: “It is because of lust for views, attachment, greed, and obsession with views, that recluses fight with recluses.”

    Finally the brahman asked whether there was anyone in the world who had transcended both sensual lust and lust for views. Although Maha Kaccana, as an arahant, could have put himself forth as an example of such a one, with characteristic modesty and self-effacement he named instead the Blessed One, who was dwelling at Savatthi at the time.

    When this was said, the brahman Aramadanda knelt down on the ground, held out his hands in reverential salutation, and exclaimed three times: “Homage to the Blessed One, the Arahant, the Fully Enlightened One.”

  9. Senerath Says:

    Thank you NMY for the excellent explantion. I could not find such a beautiful example.

  10. Vaisrawana Says:

    Thank you, NeelaMaha Yoda, for your nice contribution to the exchange of views in response to this article about the controversial bhikkhu Samanthabhadra Himi, who is proving himself to be an affliction to the Sri Lankan Buddhist society. His Arahathood is fake. I have long suspected that this worldling monk (as you have aptly characterized him) is displaying many signs of NPD (Narcissistic Personality Disorder) such as his preoccupation with himself, his intolerance of what he thinks are weaknesses in others, his assumption of superiority over all around, his readiness to get angry when his bidding is not done, and a lot more, going by what comes out in videos in the social media alone. An opportunity to have a closer look might reveal more signs of the particular personality disorder in this person to a psychiatrist. He seems to have a large following, though. Surprisingly or perhaps unsurprisingly, most of them belong to the category of ordinary Buddhists he constantly denounces as donkeys, dunces, jackals, buffaloes, etc. But, most likely, they are crowds of mere stalking buffaloes for some anti-Buddhist activists bent on eradicating the dominant Buddhist culture of the island, which is the inherent hallmark of the unitary state of Sri Lanka.

    I have a hunch that some members of a non-Buddhist sect fundamentalist organization, determined to destroy the Buddhasasana in our country, is employing this wretched individual with or without his knowledge, and that they are being lavishly funded from abroad. Probably, he is an unwitting accomplice; but equally likely, he could be betraying not only the Buddhist establishment but the whole country in exchange for a life of luxury. If he is a real Arahant he should behave in a manner that will not give rise to this kind of misgivings in our minds.

    There are strong signs to say that he is an imposter. There isn’t the faintest sign of modesty and self-effacement in him. He is the antithesis of the Venerable Arahant Maha Kaccana in your story.

  11. Wetta Says:

    As Vaisrawana said it, to me he is certain to be an impostor, a destroyer pretending to be a Buddhist of highest order. These are the modern day psychological warfare tools used by the myth-believing world super powers today.

    Unfortunately there will always be thousands of followers to any such sinner, as an example even Devadaththa during Lord Buddha’s time had a mass following wearing yellow robes. Devadaththa also was a well learned monk who had a very good knowledge of Lord Buddha’s teachings. Still his egoism made him to go his chosen way similar to what Samanthabadra chose. With this, what surprise should we have about having mass following to this modern day Devadaththa who is out in large to destroy Buddhasasana in this island?

    Buddhasasana was the single most powerful threat in Sri Lanka for the myth-believing evangelist invaders from Europe for over 500 years. Therefore they know very well that destroying or at least weakening by diving Buddhasasana is the only way left for them to take this nation as another of their slave states.

    This guy is doing his assigned job by his masters very well.

  12. RohanJay Says:

    If Ven Samanthrabadda says he is an Arahat. Then he should prove it. Only one way. Does he have the many spiritual magical powers. That Arahats are said to possess. Since he proclaimed himself as a Arahat. He now has to prove it. Even the Buddha proved he was the Buddha by displaying the many spiritual powers that such beings are meant to possess.

    I have listened to his sermons. He makes a lot of sense and has a vast and deep knowledge of Buddhism. But I do sense a big ego behind his sermons. First of all Arahats dont say they are Arahats, people realise they are Arahats when they perform supernatural feats. They are gifted many powers, if they are indeed Arahats.
    So now that he made such a big statement he has to prove it!
    Of course if he does it will make world headlines or become a big hit on the internet and youtube.
    That said, I think he preaches the original Buddhism. In that regard I think he is definitely worth further listening to.
    Personally I dont think he is an Arahant. Like he claims. But he has reached a higher level of spiritual understanding than most people.

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