Author Topic: Shun Hateful Buddhists  (Read 2715 times)

Offline Dharmakara

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Shun Hateful Buddhists
« on: July 06, 2015, 03:42:04 pm »
Well, the tide appears to be changing when it comes to the sad events that have been occurring in Myanmar and the ongoing persecution of Rohingya Muslims, with the entire editorial staff of the Bangkok Post not only taking a stand, but also speaking collectively with one voice:

The Bangkok Post, July 6, 2015

Bangkok, Thailand -- An agreement was signed in Yangon less than two weeks ago for Thai Buddhists to provide equipment and expertise for Myanmar's first Buddhist radio station. The National Thai Buddhism and Culture Mass Media Association produces radio and TV programmes in Thailand.

But the Thais have chosen to ignore the Myanmar Buddhist mainstream and basic Buddhist tenets. The small group they are helping, the Committee for the Protection of Nationality and Religion, is a nationalist movement whose chief concern is divisive and destructive attacks on Myanmar's Muslims.

The Myanmar group is better known as Ma Ba Tha, from its Burmese-language initials. It has been implicated in every act of violence against Muslims in the past three years. That includes clashes involving Rohingya people in western Rakhine state, and against Myanmar Muslim communities in other parts of the country. Ma Ba Tha is a prime backer of the movement for so-called "protection of religion" laws. It states clearly that Muslims deserve and should expect discrimination because they are "enemies of Buddhism".

Like most pro-violence religious groups, Ma Ba Tha represents neither Theravada Buddhism in general, nor the Buddhist community of Myanmar. Because of the ethnic attacks spurred on by Ma Ba Tha, whole villages have been burnt to the ground. Most of the country's Rohingya now live in camps. More tragically for Myanmar, the Ma Ba Tha militants have attacked all Muslims, including peaceful communities in Yangon and other major cities. The 1.5 million baht worth of equipment to be donated to Ma Ba Tha will, in the words of the rrawaddy magazine, help the hard-line group "trade bullhorns for broadcast towers". Instead of preaching to a crowd, the group will be able to reach entire regions with every speech. This will only multiply the hateful messages of Ma Ba Tha. It will crush messages of peace from the mainstream of Myanmar Buddhism, which has no broadcasting ability.

Significantly, and sadly, one of the prime backers of this poorly considered aid agreement is prominent Buddhist lay leader Pornchai Pinyapong. Dr Pornchai is serving his third consecutive term as president of The World Fellowship of Buddhist Youth (WFBY). At the Yangon ceremony to sign the agreement, he claimed the troubles of Rakhine state and the Rohingya are "the same problem as the southern part of Thailand".

This is false on virtually every level. So is Dr Pornchai's poorly thought-out support of Ma Ba Tha. They "just want to protect Buddhism for the next generation", he told the media. Unfortunately, the opposite is true. They want to destroy Islam and get rid of all Rohingya for their own generation. Every such move risks harming the religious tolerance and peace that Thailand has worked to earn. Thai Buddhists and the Muslim mainstream often reject so-called hardline groups that want to create religious strife. Thai Muslims in general refuse to support the southern insurgency. Thai Buddhists have never accepted so-called "leaders" of rogue mosques calling for less tolerance and more confrontation.

Buddhists, Muslims and other great religions have plenty of problems within the ranks of their faithful. At least in Thailand, there is no legitimate group that supports antagonistic messages aimed at other religions. Thais deserve to be proud of this. Religious figures abusing freedom of speech to call for strife and even violence deserve to be shunned and ignored. The Buddhist mass media experts would do the religion and their nation a favour by rethinking the Myanmar venture.,12376,0,0,1,0#.VZr-4JVRGUk

Offline Ron-the-Elder

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Re: Shun Hateful Buddhists
« Reply #1 on: July 07, 2015, 01:59:44 pm »
Part of me is saddened because of the break with Buddhist traditions of non-violence and violation of the precept to cause no harm, however another part of me sees karmic consequences resulting from practice of The Muslim faith.  This seems to be the bane of all the Abrahemic religions in that violence leads only to more violence, never ending violence.  How can anyone who has studied Buddhist teachings get themselves into such a degenerative loop?
What Makes an Elder? :
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-Dhammpada, 19, translated by Thanissaro Bhikkhu.

Offline skyflower

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Re: Shun Hateful Buddhists
« Reply #2 on: July 08, 2015, 05:48:22 pm »
This is not just belief-based problem but a human problem. Like people around the world, if we all realize that we come from the same source, religious institutions should open their eyes that their manifestos come from a single source.

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Offline MissGrape

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Re: Shun Hateful Buddhists
« Reply #3 on: July 08, 2015, 06:57:04 pm »
This is very disturbing. It is just like any other religion, however, where the few bad apples ruin the whole bunch. Or at least in this case hurts peoples perception of the religion. Muslims should rise up and shun the extremist groups like ISIS, just like the real Buddhists have shunned this Ma Ba Tha group.
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