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Citizens' Mail

Tranquility to a tempestuous mind

Ananda college has the distinction of being a forerunner in Buddhist education in the country thus contributing in a large way towards fulfilling a national duty among those who have come through its portals are eminent national heroes, religious dignitaries, politicians, scholars and those in the medical and legal professions who have made their presence felt by giving leadership on the national stage.

The history of Ananda College cannot be complete without referring to the legacy of its shrine room. A shrine room was just erected in the present school premises during the stewardship of Sir D. B. Jayatilleke in 1929. Under the leadership of Venerable Balangoda Ananda Maithree Thera who was in charge of Buddhist education during this period.

The foundation stone for the present shrine room was laid by the Prime Minister Dudley Senanayake when L. H. Meththananda was principal on January 29, 1953. Assisted by donations from many benefactors the completed shrine room was declared open by the Governor General William Gopallawa built on the model of the Moolagandakuti Vihara house, a beautiful Samadhi Buddha statue within which relics of the Buddha are placed this image the creation of Venerable Mapalagama Vipulasara Thera.

This image has been reconstructed on two occasions. The first being the 101st Birth Anniversary of Venerable Ananda Maithree Thera on August 17, 1996, and the second on March 4, 2014, on which occasion the Maha Nayakas of the three Chapters took part in floral tributes.

Ananda College which produced eminent political personalities such as Dr. N. M. Perera, Dr. S. A. Wickramasinghe, Robert Gunawardhane, Philip Gunawardhane, Barnard Zoysa and IMRA Iriyagolla was eulogised by the Venerable Aggamaha Panditha Balangoda Ananda Maithree Thera who served as a Dhammacharya for 12 years: “I don’t have any treasure other than Ananda.” This statement is brought to mind whenever one passes by the “Samadhi Buddha” sculpture.

Rukmal Vithanage
Old Anandian


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