Its time to reform Thai Buddhism

Posted: February 27, 2015 at 9:47 am


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The Nation Wednesday 25th February, 2015

Dhammakaya is one among many temples giving priority to amassing wealth by encouraging worshippers to donate large sums. Followers are told that, by doing so, they improve their chance of securing a place in Heaven. This is a damaging distortion of the Lord Buddha's teachings.

We are dismayed that the Sangha Supreme Council, the monkhood's governing body, has failed to act on a decision made by the late Supreme Patriarch in 1999 that Phra Dhammachayo be defrocked for embezzlement and distorting Buddhist teachings.

Members of the National Reform Council's committee for religious reform have called for the 1962 Monastic Act to be amended so that it better reflects the Thailand of today. Their push for reform includes proposed changes to the Sangha Supreme Council's structure. However, this has drawn the ire of the Network of Buddhists, a group of monks and lay people who insist that moves to overhaul the Sangha Council would lead to division and severe conflict among the clergy.

Monks practise the dharma as taught by the Buddha in order to seek the enlightenment that brings liberation from the cycle of rebirth and suffering.

However, there are other, more earthly incentives for entering the Thai monkhood. Monasteries offer free food, lodging and a refuge from the daily struggle to m...

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Its time to reform Thai Buddhism

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February 27th, 2015 at 9:47 am

Posted in Buddhism