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This book is written in tribute to the people of SriLanka for their contribution to the preservation andspread of Buddhism within their own island andbeyond. Buddhists everywhere have reason to begrateful for the hard work and courage of the SriLankan people. This is especially so for the missionarymonks who have gone forth beyond their shores tospread the Buddha’s teachings, bringing peace andhappiness to countless people all over the world.With my utmost gratitude, I would like to dedicatethis book to two such missionary monks who havehad an enormous influence in my life, and on so manyothers in the region and afar. These two esteemedfigures fully epitomized the missionary monks of theBuddha’s time, who went forth sharing His Teachingswith all who would listen.The first is the late Ven. Dr. K. Sri Dhammanandawho wrote numerous books in English, explainingthe Dhamma in an easy-to-understand, practicaland down-to-earth way. His writings were amongthe first Buddhist books that I read and which had aprofound effect on my life. Needless to say, his booksinfluenced and inspired my own writings.The second is the late Ven. M.M. Mahaweera MahaNayaka Thera who founded the Mangala ViharaBuddhist Temple in Singapore and who also startedthe Buddhist and Pali College on the same premises.It is at these two institutions that I acquired most ofmy Buddhist knowledge. If not for him, I would be9a totally different and a far less happy and fulfilledindividual than I am now.For the benefit of those who are unfamiliar with Ven.Dr. K. Sri Dhammananda and Ven. M.M. Mahaweera, Ihave written briefly about them on pages 69 and 70 ofthis book. Sadly, I was not fortunate enough to meetthem personally before they passed away, but I amsure they would have enjoyed this book if they werestill alive to read it.This book is not meant to be an academic treatiseand I will not derive any financial benefit from it. Itis written as a Gift of the Dhamma. I simply wish toshare with anyone interested, my knowledge of theBuddhist history of Sri Lanka and its sacred sites, andI have tried to present this information in a conciseand easily readable manner.Therefore, I would recommend serious studentsand those with keen interest, to look into otherbooks which are more authoritative and which gointo greater detail in their respective areas. For thispurpose, I have provided a list of suggested readingand my references on page 135. To the writers of allthe wonderful books and articles that I have learnedfrom and relied upon, I would like to convey myearnest gratitude and thanks.For those wishing to look deeper, the books that I havereferred to extensively are “History of Buddhism inSri Lanka” by Walpola Rahula, “State of Buddhism inCeylon (Sri Lanka) as Depicted in the Pali Chronicles”by Sandhya Bhattacharya, “Buddhism in Sri Lanka, AShort History” by H.R Perera, and “A History of SriLanka” by K.M. de Silva. For the historical Buddhistsites of the island, I would highly recommend “SacredIsland, A Buddhist Pilgrim’s Guide to Sri Lanka” byVen. S. Dhammika.10For specific sections including the Buddhist-ChristianDebates and the Buddhist Revival, I have referred,among other sources, to “Buddhism in SinhaleseSociety 1750-1900” by Kitsiri Malalgoda, “The BuddhistRevival in Sri Lanka” by George D. Bond, “BuddhismTransformed” by Richard Gombrich and GananathObeyesekere, and “Vain Debates, The Buddhist-Christian Controversies of Nineteenth CenturyCeylon” by R.F. Young, and G.P.V. Somaratna.I would like to express my sincere appreciation toVen. Dr. P. Gnanarama Thero for his kindencouragement and for writing the Foreword to thisbook. My heartfelt thanks go to Ven. S. Dhammikawho very patiently went through the text andsuggested many improvements and ideas. I am alsograteful to Ven. Apichatto Bhikkhu for helping me topolish the language and grammar in the book, Sis.Jasmine Tan for her meticulous proofreading and Ms.Geelyn Lim for her superb work on its design andlayout. However, any mistakes, errors and omissionsare mine and mine alone.May all Beings be safe from harm.May all Beings be healthy.May all Beings be happy.May all Beings be free from physical andmental suffering.May all Beings be free from greed, hatredand delusion.T Y Lee
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This features a list of significant characters from the animated television programs Avatar: The Last Airbender and The Legend of Korra created by Bryan Konietzko and Michael Dante DiMartino.
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