"The Da Vinci Code"-Christian
Sentiments & Anti-Buddhist Mafia
----The Centre for Buddhist
The controversial film " The Da Vinci Code" has created quite
an uproar in the Christian world especially in the countries which are
predominantly Catholic. It is reported that ticket sales for this film
have reached fever pitch by reaching No.1 in North America by taking
in US$77.1million; broke opening records in countries with strong Roman
Catholic traditions, such as Italy and Spain, where it grossed US$11.1
million each; its global ticket sales have reached US$231.8million in
its first few days of screening; The amount was generated from screenings
in 12,213 theatres in 79 countries.
However, while even The Vatican could not ban it in Italy, in a country
with a mere 7.5% of Catholics (of a total population of 18million people)
such as Sri Lanka, it was banned from screening in Sri Lanka by our
President Mahinda Rajapakse, due to the high respect he has for the
sentiments of The Catholic Bishop's Conference. As the President of
a country, he has to respect the sentiments of religious leaders whether
they be in the minority or majority and therefore, we respect his stand.
This is the President against whom the Right Rev. Oswild Gomis together
with Lalith Kothelawela of " SOLO-U" fame carried an island-wide
full page newspaper campaign (all 3 languages) of "fear psychosis"
and warned Catholics & Christians not to vote for him at the Presidential
Elections of November 2005! That, is the Buddhist practise of Metta
& Karuna shown by President Rajapakse towards his enemies.
Most Rev.Dr.Vianny Fernando-Bishop of Kandy and the President of the
Catholic Bishop's Conference of Sri Lanka had this to say in the article
which appeared in the Ceylon Daily News of 26th May 2006 in the article
" Catholic Clergy Lauds President for Da Vinci Code Ban-Hails Statesman
Like Act"- quote: "..
..We value and have high
regard for the freedom of expression. But in the name of freedom, we
cannot allow others to vilify, defame and insult Jesus Christ Our Savior
and Lord, One whom millions of followers all over the world worship.
Naturally we were very concerned about the film
Cyril Gamini Fernando -Editor of Gnanartha Pradeepa had also made some
comments in the same article.
The book "The Da Vinci Code" published by Dan Brown in 2003
has enjoyed record sales and intrigued many readers with the meticulous
style in which Dan Brown unwinds the mysteries within the Catholic Church
as has never been told before. At the beginning of the book there is
a section under which the following are stated by Brown- Quote:
" The Priory of Sion- a European secret society founded in 1099-
is a real organization. In 1975 Paris's Bibliotheque Nationale discovered
parchments known as Les Dossiers Secrets, identifying numerous members
of the Priory of Sion, including Sir Isaac Newton, Botticelli, Victor
Hugo, and Leonardo da Vinci.
" The Vatican prelature known as Opus Dei is a deeply devout Catholic
sect that has been the topic of recent controversy due to reports of
brainwashing, coercian, and a dangerous practice known as "corporal
mortification." Opus Dei has just completed construction of a $47
million National Headquarters at 243 Lexington Avenue in New York City.
" All descriptions or artwork, architecture, documents, and secret
rituals in this novel are accurate." End Quote
Catholic / Christian Sentiments:
To any person / group following a particular religious faith with the
ferver of the Christians, the book and film "Da Vinci Code"
will undoubtedly be insulting or hurtful as it hits out at everything
holy to the Christians as well as Catholics the world over. To the Protestant
Christians Jesus Christ & The Holy Trinity and to the Catholics
The Virgin Mary are the most holy symbols of their faith. Therefore,
we need to be sensitive towards their religious feelings and fears.
Fears, because with the screening of the film, there will undoubtedly
be a portion of the Christian/ Catholic viewers who will question the
role of their relevant churches and through disillusionment, some followers
" just might" refrain from patronizing the church in the future.
We could see with the film "Passion for Christ" how Christians
appreciated the blood bashing that Jesus Christ had to undergo- all
this helps to keep the Christian flock together and their faith. Therefore,
a film like "Da Vinci Code" will definitely not be encouraged
by the relevant churches. The theory of "freedom of conscience"
which they flaunt at other religions- in this instance is not applicable
when it might affect their own flock!
Aside from the Christian sentiment that has been hurt, we are aware
of the Islamic sentiments that were hurt by the cartoons ridiculing
their religious leader Mohamed or Allah and how they reacted towards
the Danish cartoonist as well as other western countries. The reaction
was so virulent that western NGOs or INGOs working in countries with
Muslim populations (even in Sri Lanka) even pulled down & hid the
name boards of their companies to avoid a bashing! Uncontrollable &
absolute faith towards their religious leader leashed out some extremely
Western media as well as governments tend to consider that in the name
of democracy, human rights and freedom of expression, books and films
of the nature or "Da Vinci Code" must be allowed to be screened
and therefore, even in countries like Italy and Spain which are Catholic,
those countries could not deem it necessary to ban the screening of
this film. Yet, in a predominantly Buddhist country like Sri Lanka with
a minute Catholic/Christian population, in consideration of the minority
sentiments it was banned by our President.
It is no secret that the Christian Churches worldwide, have their own
well knit network of organizations that work tirelessly, to infiltrate
into the internal workings of governments even in the USA where President
Bush himself is a mouthpiece of the church & is used by them to
hurt the religious sentiments of all countries which are non-Christian.
They conspire, destroy and distort the truth and work hard to create
dissention in those countries. Details of how they work is outlined
very clearly in the book written by Wayne Madsen "Expose : The
Christian Mafia" where he explains the history of the Evangelical
Movement from as far back as the 1940s and how they have successfully
established their control within all major organizations & governments
to act according to their whims and fancies. The Da Vinci Code of Dan
Brown gives us a little insight into the secret operation net-workings
of the Catholic Church -this is why it could be damaging to the Church
and it's image. We have witnessed similar conspiracies in our country
More than ever before, we in Sri Lanka have been able to witness during
the recent past of may be 20-30 years how the Catholic, Protestant and
Evangelical Churches together with their Christian Organisations of
INGOs & NGOs have established themselves within the government structures
at all levels right upto the internal workings of our government to
the extent of even controlling the decision making of our Presidents.
Our former President was surrounded by Catholics & Evangelists who
poisoned her mind against all Sinhala Buddhist activities in their shrewd
but subtle manner. "Inter-Religious /Faith Committees" is
a terminology coined by them to hoodwink the unsuspecting Buddhists
in this country which will enable them to be involved & interfere
in the activities of other religious groups! The media & press in
this country is controlled by the Christian mafia.
Watching the sequence of events which have taken place within Sri Lanka
during the last couple of decades, we have observed how the Opus Dei
and the Christian Mafia have successfully destroyed all feelings of
identity and national pride in this country. Sad though it may seem,
this is the truth.
Buddhist Sentiments in Sri Lanka :
Buddhists have till now, and will always respect the religious beliefs
of all religions and have never tried to impose Buddhism on followers
of other religions or ever attempted to buy them over. Any non-Buddhists
who have embraced Buddhism are those who have read the Dhamma, understood
and have found true inner peace through The Buddha Dhamma. It has never
been because we Buddhists have tried " to sell our religion"
to them. However, it is with great sadness that we state that we have
not witnessed Christian respect towards Buddhism and Buddhists in this
country where Buddhism is the foremost religion & where Buddhists
are approximately 75% of the total population.
Just as much as The Holy Trinity, Jesus Christ and Virgin Mary are
sacred to Christians of all denominations, so is The Buddha and everything
He represents which includes The Maha Sangha - holy and sacred to all
Buddhists in this country. Just as much as Christians feel insulted
by the "Da Vinci Code" of Dan Brown, so do we Buddhists feel
hurt and insulted when Catholics, Evangelists and some other Orthodox
Christian groups in this country intentionally and hurtfully insult
The Buddha, Buddhism & The Maha Sangha in Sri Lanka. Zeal to spread
the faith is one thing but more important, is to respect the culture
and religion of the majority of that country. This is the true basis
on which " inter-religious harmony," - a term which Christians
love to toy with, can be established. It is truly sad that Christian
groups involved in unethical conversions inside the boundaries of Sri
Lanka do not understand what "mutual respect " means?
To use the same words of Most Rev.Dr.Vianny Fernando-Bishop of Kandy
and the President of the Catholic Bishop's Conference of Sri Lanka and
apply it to Buddhist sentiments in this country "..
value and have high regard for the freedom of expression. But in the
name of freedom, we cannot allow others to vilify, defame and insult
The Buddha, The Dhamma, Buddhists and The Maha Sangha in Sri Lanka."
We hope that by using the same expression used by the Catholic Bishops
Conference- the meaning will remain the same when it applies to Buddhists
in this country! We hope they will think twice in the future when they
The Anti- Buddhist Mafia:
The Anti-Buddhist Mafia has been active in this country ever since the
entry of the Portuguese in 1505. From then until 1948 when we gained
independence from the British for 440 years Buddhists in this country
suffered every possible manner of discrimination- and we tolerated it.
With all the forcible conversions & atrocities done by the Portuguese,
The Dutch and The British through 440 years, they were only able to
get 7.5% of our population converted to Christianity.
During the past 30 years, more shrewd, surreptious and subtle methods
have been used by Catholics, some Orthodox Christian Groups and Evangelists
from "Born Again" Christian Churches who originate from USA,
UK, South Korea, Australia, Europe have entered this country in the
guise of economic & social development aid workers , entered villages
100% Buddhist and in the most arrogant & obnoxious manner hurt the
sentiments of innocent villagers by insulting The Buddha, Buddhists
and The Maha Sangha. The Tsunami of 26th December 2004 was another opportunity
for them to enter our country. Their urge to conduct unethical conversions
have manifested in many ways. Is this the "freedom " that
they expect us Buddhists to tolerate and accept? Money and material
benefits are thrown while conducting the following activities to win
1. To get unsuspecting school children to smash Buddha statues; to
gather people to their "Community Centres" and give Muscat
and Necto to Buddhists who have been brought to be converted, and say
that it is the flesh & blood of The Buddha that they are eating
2. To teach pre-school children not to worship their parents, teachers
or temple monks because one must kneel down only before God ( this is
being taught to Buddhist children);
3. To tell children that Prince Sidhartha (who later became The Buddha),
was a bad father because he left his day old child & wife and left
4. Buddhists offer flowers to The Buddha and contemplate on the impermanence
of life. Children are taught not to pluck flowers from the trees because
the birds and bees will have no food!
5. To convince Buddhists in villages not to patronize the village temple
and offer arms to Buddhist Monks because the Monks do not " give
goodies to the villagers" ( a person becomes a Monk after renouncing
lay life-his role is to help villagers understand The Buddha Dhamma
and shorten their Samsara);
6. To get paid workers to buy liquor from nearby bars and take it into
village temples for villagers to see in order to get the villagers to
abandon patronizing temples due to disgust because they see liquor being
taken inside the temple;
7. To pay ordinary young men to wear the saffron robe and misbehave
in society, to be seen reading obscene literature in public, to be seen
purchasing meat & fish from the market-----all this is done to get
Buddhists to feel revulsion towards Monks;
8. To send paid young couples to visit village temples in the night
in the pretext they are traveling afar and need a place to rest in the
night. Village temples do not have accommodation except in the Dhammasala.
Within minutes of gaining permission to stay overnight in the temple,
the young man leaves the temple on the pretext of purchasing something
from the nearby temple & the girl rings the temple bell to inform
villagers that the Monk molested or tried to molest her! Many are the
instances when good and pious Monks have abandoned the temples because
they cannot face the villagers after such shameful accusations;
9. To offer to send Monks abroad for employment or studies /& confer
academic degrees. By doing this they encourage Monks to abandon the
temples which are isolated in rural villages;
10. To organize paid workers to attack their own community / prayer
centers and blame Buddhists in the village for such attacks. Immediately,
the news is sent to overseas Christian organizations that extremist
Buddhists have attacked their churches;
11. To get Christian parliamentarians to obstruct and block all legislature
that will protect the Sinhala Buddhist cause ;
12. To pay young men to visit temples and destroy them, in the guise
of searching for archeological treasures. Most often The Buddha Statue
is destroyed in the most inhumane manner;
13. To use Christian parliamentarians to put forward suggestions to
acquire temple properties for social development work; to work through
their contacts within the government and tax temple properties;
14. To get Christian parliamentarians to befriend and become active
in activities of famous temples & get themselves elected to the
Dayake Sabhas. This will enable them to control positive agendas of
temples towards their village;
15. To conspire to defame active Buddhist Monks and lay personalities
16. To use The Buddha images for commercial purposes by printing them
on candles, biscuits given to pre-school children to eat, bed linen,
swim suits, hotel décor & also name liquor bars "Buddha
Bar" (one of the 5 precepts is "refrain from consuming alchohol);
We pose these questions to our Christian friends " To humiliate
The Buddha & Buddhists when you use the above methods in the process
of your conversion activities, are the sentiments of Buddhists ever
taken into consideration or are these not intentional acts done by the
Christians to "vilify and insult The Buddha?" How is it any
different from the feelings of Christians towards "The Da Vinci
Code " of Dan Brown?