The core principle of peace seems to be fading
Since 2012, the BBS has embraced direct action, following the example of other like-minded groups. It raided Muslim-owned slaughter-houses claiming, incorrectly, that they were breaking the law. Members demonstrated outside a law college alleging, again incorrectly, that exam results were being distorted in favour of Muslims.
Now that a Tamil adversary has been defeated, Muslims seem to be these nationalists’ main target, along with evangelical Christians whom they accuse of deceitfully and cunningly converting people away from Buddhism.
We have spoken here on the VirtualMosque before about the myth that all Buddhists are peaceful people. From the atrocities committed in places like China and Burma it is clear that there are many who quickly turn to extreme violence if they are unhappy.
Now in Sri Lanka, an aggressive group has come together to defeat the ‘Muslim threat’.
Time and again he and his colleague bracket the word “Muslim” together with the word “extremist”
From anti Muslim rallies, where Buddhists have killed people and burnt homes and businesses to the ground, to attacking slaughter houses and colleges under the guise of stopping the ‘Muslim threat’, it seems that the Buddhist teaching of peace is a forgotten memory.
Moderate Buddhists have also been targeted by hard-line ones.
Last year Rev Wathareka Vijitha Thero was abducted, rendered unconscious, tied up and forcibly circumcised – he says this was meant as a gesture of ridicule because he had worked for closer cooperation between Buddhists and Muslims.
For Buddhist Monks the promise not to kill is the most important of their pledges, and they believe that the principle of non violence is more central to Buddhism than any other major religion.
This guidance of peace seems not to include Muslims when you look at China, Burma or Sri Lanka however. The stunning advancement of technology has meant that atrocities from around the World can be reported in seconds and the Buddhists can no longer hide behind the myth of a non violent religion.
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