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Not in Our Name - English

Not in Our Name - English

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Published by Sanjana Hattotuwa
Read details of the campaign here - http://notinournamesl.wordpress.com
Read details of the campaign here - http://notinournamesl.wordpress.com

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Published by: Sanjana Hattotuwa on Jun 01, 2012
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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1/6/12 8:14 AMPut your name down, and resist violence « Not In Our NamePage 1 of 196http://notinournamesl.wordpress.com/2012/04/26/put-your-name-down-and-resist-violence/#comments
Not In Our Name
What happened
A week ago, a violent a mob of about 2,000 Sinhalese, including a group of Buddhist monks led bythe Mahanayaka of the Rangiri Dambulu chapter Inamaluwe Sumangalathero, stormed andvandalised a mosque in Dambulla. The mosque was declared an illegal structure, but it isunclear how this far this is accurate (http://groundviews.org/2012/04/24/deed-of-mosque-in-dambulla-and-photos-of-damage-how-is-this-structure-illegal/).Several videos (http://groundviews.org/2012/04/23/bigoted-monks-and-militant-mobs-is-this-buddhism-in-sri-lanka-today/)
 , broadcast on national TV in Sri Lanka and now circulatingglobally on YouTube capturing the violence beggars belief. There are members of the
engaged in physical violence and verbal abuse. There is a member of the
who disrobesand exposes himself, in public, in front of the mosque. In one video, Ven.Inamaluwe Sumangala thero suggests that the maniacal mob is actually a
 , andthat destroying the mosque is something that they should in fact be helped by the government.Aside from the physical violence, which includes scuffles with Army and Police personnel,the derogatory and racist language (http://groundviews.org/2012/04/23/bigoted-monks-and-militant-mobs-is-this-buddhism-in-sri-lanka-today/) employed by Ven. Inamaluwe Sumangalathero and other Buddhist monks during the attack against the mosque, and a nearby Hindukovil, is appalling. Though the violence of the Sinhala idiom employed loses much intranslation,
(http://groundviews.org/2012/04/23/bigoted-monks-and-militant-mobs-is-this-buddhism-in-sri-lanka-today/) put into English the most disquieting comments fora wider appreciation. More startling are anti-Muslim, Sinhala-Buddhist supremacist Facebook groups (http://groundviews.org/2012/04/23/bigoted-monks-and-militant-mobs-is-this- buddhism-in-sri-lanka-today/) that have thousands of active members and with content tooinflammatory to even translate.A week after this violence,it has not received the condemnation it deserves from the President,government or mainstream media. Ven. Inamaluwe Sumangala thero, perhaps reacting to the
1/6/12 8:14 AMPut your name down, and resist violence « Not In Our NamePage 2 of 196http://notinournamesl.wordpress.com/2012/04/26/put-your-name-down-and-resist-violence/#comments
indelible record of violence captured in film, attempted to suggest to the BBC that the footage ofthe mob broadcast on TV was doctored. Ironically, his own media websites showcase the sameviolence, in greater detail (http://groundviews.org/2012/04/24/fake-video-and-lies-the-strange-case-of-dambullas-inamaluwe-sumangala-thero/). A Press Release issued on 25th Aprilfrom the Government Information Department, only in Sinhala(https://twitter.com/groundviews/status/195104334206353408)
 , strangely referred to theviolence as a ‘minor misunderstanding’, yet reiterated that Sri Lanka is(https://twitter.com/groundviews/status/195203264206209026) “a multi-religious, multi-ethnic society” and that “in addition to respecting their constitutional obligations, as well as thepolicies and principles of the government, all Sri Lankans have a long standing tradition of being respectful of each other”.
What is the fall-out?
The photographs, audio and video recordings of the violence in Dambulla have gone global.They cannot be erased. Incensed by this incident and those who led it, there are now growingthreats of violence by sections of the Muslim community, though there are many voices,including the Muslim Council (https://twitter.com/groundviews/status/195480685912408066)
 ,who are calling for calm, and a more reasoned approach to the transformation of this conflict,noting that the actions of a few are not indicative of the nature of the majority.There is a real danger that unaddressed or if simply glossed over, this militant religiousextremism can very quickly and very seriously undermine Sri Lanka’s post-war reconciliation,and contribute to new, more geographically dispersed violent conflict. Extremists from both theSinhala-Buddhist community and the Muslim community can also use this incendiary incidentin Dambulla to stoke up communal tensions, leading to heightened fear and anxiety.
What can we do?
The shameful behaviour and expression employed by the Mahanayaka of the Rangiri Dambuluchapter, along with the monks he led and the crowd of thugs is not remotely associated with orreflective of the philosophy of the
 , the teachings of the Buddha, or the way in which aBuddhist monk is supposed to behave and speak. Many online have already expressed theirdismay and deep concern over the actions of a few (http://groundviews.org/2012/04/24/fake-video-and-lies-the-strange-case-of-dambullas-inamaluwe-sumangala-thero/#comment-43509)
 ,placing Sri Lanka in the media spotlight again for all the wrong reasons.
We have a choice, but time is running out.
Speak up. Put your name in a comment below, inEnglish, Sinhala or Tamil. Say that last week’s violence was not in your name. Renounce a fringelunacy and resist extremism. By putting your name below, oppose mob violence and bigotry asways to resolve disputes.If we have to fight, let’s fight to keep Sri Lanka free of extremists who threaten not only whatthey seek to destroy, but also who and what they claim to represent. Add your name below, andplease pass the message on.
What will be done?
1/6/12 8:14 AMPut your name down, and resist violence « Not In Our NamePage 3 of 196http://notinournamesl.wordpress.com/2012/04/26/put-your-name-down-and-resist-violence/#comments
After a month, the names and comments of those who signed up will be printed out and sent tothe Presidential Secretariat, the Prime Minister’s Office and the Ministry of Religious Affairs &Moral Upliftment(http://www.priu.gov.lk/Ministries_2007/Min_religious_aff_and_moral_upliftment.html)
 ,along with the Department of Buddhist Affairs, Department of Christian ReligiousAffairs, Department of Hindu Religious and Cultural Affairs and the Department of MuslimReligious and Cultural Affairs.
How to sign up?
 Join hundreds of others by adding your name as a comment to this blog post. This is thepreferred mode of input, and scrolling through the other comments can help to frame your ownthoughts. For those who find this difficult, send us your comment and name using the form below, which we will as quickly as possible, add to the site. As a final resort, you can alwaysemail the comment to editors@groundviews.org. Bear in mind however that human resourcescurating this site are limited, so it may take a while for your comment to appear. Please bearwith us.Posted in EnglishPermalink 1,261 Comments
1,261 responses to “Put your name down, and resist violence”
April 26, 2012 at 1:46 pm (Edit)I am Sanjana Hattotuwa. I am Sri Lankan. This violence is not in my name.
Adahas Ada
April 27, 2012 at 11:31 am (Edit)I say ‘No’ and you should too!Violence against any race or religion for whatever reason is against religious, social andmoral principles in a decent society.“Peace comes from within. Do not seek it without.”Siddh
rtha Gautama Buddha“Those who are patient in adversity and forgive wrongs are the doers of excellence.”Prophet Muhammad (
April 27, 2012 at 2:42 pm (Edit)CharmaineThis is so ridiculous. All blame should be ointed straiht to the Sri Lankan

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Daleena Samara added this note
I am a Sri Lankan and a Buddhist. I do not support the behaviour of these 'monks' and their supporters, which is a grave affront to the very mind of Buddhism and which can only lead to more bloodshed in the country. They more than anyone else are the enemies of Buddhism. Absolutely not in my name! Daleena Samarajiwa
Carlton Samarajiwa added this note
Cry, the beloved country Carlton Samarajiwa

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