Monks never stand up even before kings: JHU

By Kelum Bandara and Yohan Perera, Daily Mirror, Sept 10, 2008

Colombo, Sri Lanka -- JHU parliamentarian Ven. Ellawala Medhananda Thera told parliament yesterday that a Buddhist monk should stand up for the Buddha Dhamma or only in the presence of a senior monk.

Ven. Medhananda Thera was justifying the action of the Buddhist monks who did not stand up in the Supreme Court recently, saying that Buddhist monks never stood up even before kings in the past.

“Bhikkhus are not supposed to rise to their feet before a layman however powerful he may be. But we should respect the laws of the country” he said. The JHU monk said this was the tradition of the Sasana.

At this point, UNP MP Palitha Ranga Bandara queried about the Asgiriya Mahanayake Thera’s statement which was contradictory.

Ven. Medhananda Thera responded saying it might have been the personal viewpoint of the Mahanayake Thera.