Special Sri Lankan Pictorial Report
The Academy travelled to Sri Lanka for the 14th Annual General Conference of World Buddhist Sangha Youth (WBSY), and the inauguration and first conference of World United Buddhist Sangha Cultural Exchange Council (UBSC).
WBSY is a platform for all Buddhist, especially young sangha, to learn from others, exchange ideas and present their academic papers. It was also the inaugural conference of World United Buddhist Sangha Cultural Exchange Council (UBSC), founded by Most Ven. Anuruddha Mahathero and Master Wang.
UBSC aims to foster co-operation and harmony between Theravadayana, Mahayana, Vajrayana, Tantrayana and Zen Buddhism. The new council will have multi-national chapters with headquarters in Australia and Sri Lanka.
During the pilgrimage to Sri Lanka, Master Wang also visited two Sangharajas (chief monks) from the Asgiriya and Malwatta Chapters of the Siyam Maha Nikaya. Later, under the leadership of Master Wang, the delegation visited Buddhist monuments such as the Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relics of Lord Buddha. As part of the expedition, the delegation also travelled to visit temples around the country for the annual Katina (robe offering) rituals, as well as the unveiling of a new stupa north of Kandy.
On 28 October, the 7th Spiritual Dialogue between Theravadayana, Mahayana and Tantrayana Buddhism was held. Representatives from all traditions gave talks relating to their spiritual understanding. Master Wang and several Elder Gurus from the Academy also delivered speeches, representing Tantrayana Buddhism.
On 29 October, the Opening Ceremonies for this year's WBSY and UBSC conferences were held at Central Province Council Chambers at Pallekele. Over 300 high monks, government ministers, overseas delegates and local Buddhist sangha participated in the ceremony. Following the morning opening ceremony and Sanghadana ritual, the afternoon saw the presentation and discussion of numerous research papers.
On 30 October, the Closing Ceremony of the WBSY and UBSC conferences was convened at Millawana. His Excellency Hon. Maithripala Sirisena, President of Sri Lanka, honoured us with his presence. He was joined by Sangharaja, His Holiness Most Ven. Warakagoda Chanarathana Mahanayaka Thero and other government ministers. The President said in his speech that ''I am glad to note that the members of different schools of Buddhism such as Theravada, Mahayana, Tantrayana, Vajrayana and Zen participate in the activities of the World Buddhist Sangha Youth and the commitment of Bhikkus. Bhikkunis, Upaskha and Upasikhas for propagation of Buddhism is laudable."
The President also added that "The theme of the 14th conference 'Buddhist Leadership for Sustainable Development' is timely and in line with the government vision of sustainable peace and unity among nations."
His Holiness Most Ven Warakagoda Chanarathana Mahanayaka Thero of Asgiriya Chapter of the Siyam Maha Nikaya, publicly recognised Tantrayana Buddhism and urged co-operation between Theravadayana, Mahayana, Vajrayana, Tantryana and Zen Buddhism.
The conference drew national attention, and was reported by multiple large media outlets including Sri Lanka's Daily News, and the President Media Division.
Day 1 - Sanghadana and robe offering ritual, paying respects to Sangharajas and paying homage to Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic:
Day 2 - Sanghadana ritual and 7th Spiritual Dialogue between Tantrayana, Mahayana and Theravadayana Buddhism:
Day 3 - opening of 14th General Conference of WBSY and Inauguration of UBSC:
Day 4 - closing of 14th General Conference of WBSY and 1st conference of UBSC:
Day 5 - visiting Anurudha Arana:
Day 6 - opening of Alokarama Temple in Matale:
Special Commemorative Poster: