The Buddhist Youth Magazine (1969)
Posted on October 5th, 2021

Senaka Weeraratna

In November 1968 Sepala Amarasuriya took an initiative to form a Buddhist Youth Forum and invited a number of his classmates, school friends, and friends outside these two circles to join the Forum. The Office bearers were:

Anusasaka or Patron: Ven. Piyadassi Thera of the Vajiraramaya

President : Hiranthi Jayasuriya
Vice President: Tilak Gunawardana
Joint Secretaries
Sepala Amarasuriya
Anura Bandaranaike
Treasurer: Anil Dias
Editor: Senaka Weeraratna

Several eminent Buddhists delivered talks to members of the Forum every Sunday afternoon. They comprised Ven. Wellawatte Dr. Ananda Thero, Professor K.N.Jayatilleke, Alec Robertson, Ramsay ( R.G. de S.)Wettimuni, C.D.S.Siriwardena, among others.

In addition to attendance at weekly talks at Sepala Amarasuriya’s residence at Park Road, the Forum also organized Trips outside Colombo. 

In December 1968, the members of the Buddhist Youth Forum visited Mitirigala Nissarana Vanaya (Mitirigala Forest Hermitage) and spent a day there. They went in a Bus. Some of the visitors to Mitirigala on this trip were Anura Bandaranaike, Sepala Amarasuriya, Tilak Gunawardana, Hiranthi Jayasuriya, Anil Dias, Dilanjan Soysa, Gihan de Silva, Welikala, Mahes Withana, Ravi Kumararatne, Anoma de Silva, Savitri Amarasuriya, Anoma Panditaratne, and Tissa Weeraratna. 

In November 1969, the Forum published a Magazine called ‘ The Buddhist Youth’. The Editor was Senaka Weeraratna. He was assisted by Ven. Piyadassi Thera and  William Peiris, senior Journalist.

The Magazine was given up as lost or untraceable. But fortunately on a routine check up of the material at the Archives of the Berlin Vihara ( Das Buddhistische Haus) in Germany, recently, a copy of this Magazine, was discovered. It had been gifted to the Library of the Berlin Vihara by Tissa Weeraratna over 50 years ago.

There are some interesting articles in the first Edition of the Magazine including several photos taken at Mitirigala on the occasion of the visit of the Forum members to the Aranya in December 1968.

A pdf copy of the Magazine is attached.

https://www.magentacloud.de/lnk/UcsgtwJH

You may also click on the weblink above and download the magazine.

I must thank Dr. Winfrid Liebrich, the honorary Librarian of Das Buddhistische Haus, for his assistance in helping me to trace and recover this rare copy of the Magazine.

Senaka Weeraratna

October 05, 2021

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