Africa and Buddhism

The oldest Buddhist temple in Africa is the Tanzania Buddhist Temple and Meditation Centre.

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"Here in Africa, lots of people experience poverty and can only think of survival in terms of materialistic needs and not of mental development or concentration. If anybody offers these they will automatically follow the religion of the providers. So materialistic needs overtake religious needs."

"Buddhist missionaries are not supposed to make any material support to their followers as their principle. Instead, followers have to donate to the missionaries, thus people are not going to follow these missionaries who have only mental happiness to offer instead of their daily needs for survival."

"28.6 % of  Tanzanians cannot read and write in any language. There is more illiteracy among women (36 %) than men (20.4 %)."

"The Africans are very faithful in their belief in God and his creations. In Buddhism, we cannot find the concept of creator God. There is no final judgement, no repentance or forgiveness for your evil actions, no eternal life and ultimate God. Everything depends on you and your actions. You are the judge, creator and will reap the results of your actions."

Two cases to contemplate.

As this knowledge "Africa and Buddhism" is being picked up at a monastery in an Asean country today, a very old man walked to the staff of the monastery and asked from them, two dollars. There was a short silent, and then the staff shook their heads side ways. Then, I handed to him two dollars. He asked for an additional one dollar for two dollars can't buy him breakfast.

Case Two.

As I drove away with a foreigner, she described an incident where there was a girl in her early twenties asking for money. She sat on the floor by the road side, and she had a cigarette in her hand. The foreigner did not give her any.

At this moment when this post is completed, the All Night Chanting of the monastery has started and shall proceed non-stop till sunrise tomorrow and into the noon.

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