A social worker in robes

Published : 10:11 am  May 26, 2015 | No comments so far |  |  (463) reads | 

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The Southern Province Chief Sangha Nayake of the Sri Lanka Ramannya Nikaya.  Ven. Dr. Omalpe Sobhitha Thera is an erudite Buddhist monk who carries the reputation for the Ven. Thera’s exemplary life and dedication to the wellbeing of mankind and the Buddha Sasana. Ven. Sobhitha Thera   possesses all the qualities of a great disciple who deserves veneration as enunciated by the Buddha.
According to the preaching of the Buddha, a Buddhist monk of high calibre should be fit for reverence, dependable, an individual who guides the students along the right path,   and of happy disposition, integrity, high thinking, meaningful and purposeful speech. Ven. Omalpe Sobitha Thera is a great Buddhist monk who possesses all these qualities.


Born on May 26, 1950 at Embilipitiiya in the Ratnapura district. Ven.Sobhitha Thera  is  65 years of age today. He had entered the order at the age of ten under the tutelage of Ven. Lalpe Siriwansa Thera of Hingureara Sri Bodhirukkarama temple in Embilipitiya and had his primary education as a novice under the then Head of the Pottewela Jinaraja Pirivena, Mahanayake of the Sri Lanka Ramannya Nikaya Ven. Pottewela Pannasara Thera. Ven. Omalpe Sobhitha Thera received higher ordination in 1972 while continuing his education. Ven.Thera graduated as Bachelor of Arts (BA) in 1974 and joined the government service as a teacher.  


He graduated as Master of Arts (MA) in 1981 and  left for Thailand on a Royal Thai Cultural Scholarship, and later engaged in propagating Buddhism in Singapore on the invitation of the World Buddhist Congress.


Ven. Thera entered the Delhi University and received his doctorate (Ph.D) in Buddhist Philosophy. After returning to the country in 1987, Ven. Thera founded the Sri Bodhiraja Foundation and Sri Bodhiraja Bhikku Training Institute that provides a yeoman service in the field of education, social service and spiritual development through a network of other institutions affiliated to them.


The social welfare and educational programmes are implemented under the guidance of Ven. Sobhitha Thera, a visionary Buddhist monk with a long experience in dedicated social service. Ven. Thera has been functioning as an environmental advisor to the United Nations Organisation and campaigning with incessant toil against unethical conversion.` As a Member of Parliament, Ven. Thera was the first to move the Tobacco and Liquor Bill as a private member motion in parliament.


In appreciation of the Ven. Sobhitha Thera’s services to the nation and the Buddha Sasana, he was appointed as Southern Province Chief Sangha Nayake of the Sri Lanka Ramannya Nikaya in 2012.


Embilipitiya Sri Bodhiraja Foundation, and the Singapore Sri Bodhiraja Buddhist Centre has organised a series of religious ceremonies to mark the Ven. Thera’s 65th birthday.


 The programme includes donation of 100 wheel chairs, tree planting campaigns, attending the patients in Embilipitiya hospital, and Buddha Poojas.


May the Ven.Thera live long with the blessings of the Triple Gem