The Buddhist Flag was first hoisted in Sri Lanka on Wesak Day, 28 April 1885, when the country was still under British colonial rule. At that time, the majority Sinhalese Buddhist population felt discriminated against by the colonial authorities when carrying out their religious activities, as well as pressurized by relentless foreign evangelism. The Buddhists needed an icon to peacefully rally around, and hence, the idea of the ‘Buddhist Flag’ was conceived.
On Thursday 2 April, Nalanda welcomed Ven. Dr. T. Sangharatana Nāyaka Thero to talk on how to be ‘Good Practitioners’. Ven. Sangharatana said that the teaching of all Buddhas is to ‘avoid doing evil actions, to cultivate wholesome deeds and to develop mental abilities’. Buddhists are reminded to be mindful of our actions – whether physical, verbal or mental – at all times.
On Sunday 29 March, Nalandian youths organised a ‘Charity Car Wash’ at Nalanda House, Sri Serdang to raise funds for Dhamma Education, and the “Children’s Wish Society of Malaysia”, an organisation which aims to fulfil the wishes of terminally-ill children.
On Sunday 29 March, Nalanda held its first ‘Open Day’ to enable new visitors to be introduced and given an informative tour of Nalanda Centre. As the Centre was expanded through the generosity of the public, we wish that the community would benefit from this initiative and enjoy a spiritually-charged visit. The ‘Open Day’ was hosted by Bro. Charlie Teng and Sis. Buddhini Tan, EXCO Members of Nalanda Buddhist Society.
On Saturday 28 March, Nalanda Sungai Petani Branch invited Venerable Thipako and Venerable Chye from Sammāditthi Meditation Grove for lunch dāna at the proposed Nalanda Outreach & Education (NEO) Centre, located in Bandar Mutiara, Sungai Petani. The dāna was specially arranged to mark the beginning of construction work of the new centre, and to invoke the blessings of the ‘Three Jewels’ for the successful completion of the project.
On Sunday 22 March, Bro. Tan gave an insightful Dhamma talk on practising Dhamma, which begins with the purification of ‘Sīla’ (morality). Basic Dhamma education is a way to teach people about understanding their personal and moral responsibilities, to uplift them, and to make them wholesome beings. Bro. Tan also elaborated on the seven stages of purification, quoting from ‘Rathavinīta Sutta’ – ‘The Relay Chariots’ (Majjhima Nikaya No. 24).
A group of 12 earnest Dhamma School teachers and Buddhist leaders from Kelantan came to Nalanda Centre Sri Serdang for a fruitful learning visit from 20 – 22 March. They were warmly welcomed and hosted by Nalanda Dharma School (N.D.S.) Director Sis. Sunanda Ong and N.D.S. Facilitators.
On Sunday 15 March, we were honoured to host Venerable Ajahn Sumedho and 3 accompanying monks for Dāna (alms-food offering) followed by Dhamma teaching at Nalanda Centre, Sri Serdang. A large crowd had gathered at Nalanda Centre for the opportunity to see Ajahn Sumedho, and to listen to his Dhamma teachings.
On Monday 16 March, Nalanda Founder Bro. Tan paid a half-day visit to the newly-opened Mangala Lodge Buddhist House in Kampar, Perak. The lodge is a comfortable and well-furnished hostel facility specially catered for students studying in nearby institutions. It is located adjacent to the Universiti Tunku Abdul Rahman (UTAR) main campus, and not far from TAR University College (formerly ‘TAR College’) branch campus.