Participants of Nalanda Institute’s BPS402 Higher Certificate Course recently had the privilege of attending a lecture on the “Historical Development of Buddhism in Southeast Asia” by Nalanda Founder Bro. Tan on Saturday, 30 August. Bro. Tan, an acknowledged expert on Buddhist history in Southeast Asia, gave the expected ‘virtuoso performance’ on his pet subject. Participants were mesmerized by broad historical vistas and insightful views on Buddhist expansion across Southeast Asian polities over a span of 1,500 years!
Characteristics of ethnic groups such as the Pyu, Mon, Tai, Bamar and Sinhalese, as well as ‘Indianised’ states such as Srivijaya, Dvaravati, Lanna, Sukhothai, et cetera were described with tantalizing details. It was certainly a breathtaking and superb introduction to the Buddhist expansion out of Middle India southward and eastward, and its subsequent development in this region.