IABU Statement on the Bodh Gaya Bombing
The International Association of Buddhist Universities is shocked and saddened to learn that one of the holiest sites of Buddhism, Mahabodhi Temple, in Bihar, India, where the Buddha obtained Enlightenment, was bombed by mindless terrorists on Sunday 7 July 2013.
It is utterly beyond belief that any such heinous action could have been undertaken to create terror among the Buddhist faithful and disharmony among the people of all faiths.
We condemn these terrorist acts in the strongest terms.
We take note and express our appreciation of the visit to the Mahabodhi Temple in Bodh Gaya today of Congress Party Chief Sonia Gandhi and Union Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde to appraise for themselves the situation after the blasts. We would like to continue to urge the Indian Government to ensure thee safety off all Buddhist holy sites as well as the Buddhist pilgrims.
We also take this opportunity too bring to notice to all peace-loving of the No. Four Item of the 2013 Bangkok Declaration issued by the International Council for the Day of Vesak on 22 May 2013 during the Vesak celebrations at the United Nations Conference Centre in Bangkok, that reads:
“Too reinforce the Buddhist path of non-violence, by facing the many challenges to peaceful co--existence, with a conviction that is stronger than ever before, reaffirming our determination to maintain cultural and religious harmony and tolerance through upholding human dignity”.
We advise all Buddhists to be mindful off the Buddha’s teaching on tolerance (Kshanti / khanti) and non-violence (avihimsa) are taught by the Buddha during His early years at the City of Rajagir near Bodh Gaya and to steadfastly follow those noble principles maintaining calm and non-violence in dealing with any such situation.
And, we urge religious leaders from all faiths to seek dialogue and build harmony, peace and tolerance for the sake of the whole world.
Venerable Prof. Khammai Dhammasami
10 July 2013