Friday, December 13, 2013

the Buddhist who denounced Christianity

Passed along in email and of possible interest is this article about Dhammaloka, an Irishman with a credible claim to being the first western Buddhist monk. His popularity in Southeast Asia was not shared by the authorities, who twice had him up on charges of sedition. In 1910, the charge arose after "he publicly accused Christians of being immoral, violent and set on the destruction of Burmese tradition."


  1. By an interesting piece of synchronicity Adam I have just received a letter from an old friend who after 25 years as a Bhikkhu, mostly in Thailand, has just renounced the robe and reverted to Anglicanism..
    He said that what first prompted his loss of Buddhist faith was the degree of corruption in the Thai sangha.

  2. Outgrowing previous enthusiasms seems to be part of the human packet.

  3. Peter, interesting that your friend jumped to Anglicanism rather than the Mahayana. There seems to be more to that story than just a reaction to institutional corruption. Of course the problem of corruption of Buddha Dharma is always connected to the failure to maintain a separation between the sangha and the state. Whenever the state gets involved then orthodoxy becomes officially enforced, including such things as stated authorized ordination, and corruption necessarily follows.

  4. "the failure to maintain a separation between the sangha and the state."

    What sort of legalistic wonderland is this?