On May 9th we started an action to support the people and Sangha of Myanmar in their non-violent protests by requesting monastics from around the world to send in or post pictures of themselves with overturned almsbowl or with the 3-finger pro-democracy sign.
I am very glad that so many (senior) monastics and lay people supported this, a.o. Bhikkhu Bodhi, Bhante Analayo, Ayya Anandabodhi, Ayya Santacitta, Bhante Sujato, Sayadaw U Jagara and many others.
The news has also been spread by the media:
Myanmar Democratic Voice of Burma News:
Through various channels we received feedback that the people and Sangha in Myanmar really appreciated this action. It gave them encouragement and hope and faith in the Buddha’s teachings.
I want to thank our friend Ayya Yeshe from Australia, who has so tirelessly helped me, supported me and encouraged me to make this happen. I would not have been able to do it without her dedication and strength. She is a real pillar for Buddhist social justice in the world.
I also want to thank all the monastics and lay people who have supported this movement by sending in pictures of themselves. Every day we received pictures from the senior teachers I so respect and from friends from around the world, some known to us, others unknown. I feel so touched by your support.
And last but certainly not least I thank my Burmese friends from the Sangha 4 Myanmar team who have done such a great job and who did all those things I had no idea about! You have been amazing!
During the first week of this action, we were targetted by hackers who convinced the Facebook robot to remove all posts with the below viral picture of the monks that were the direct impetus for me and blocked the account of our administrator. In the mean time, she has her account back. We do not know what happend to these monks. Long before we started we heard that the abbot of this monastery was arrested for posting this picture. We want to keep their memory alive and not let their sacrifice be in vain.
I sincerely wish that the next year we will see some changes happening in Myanmar and that the country once again will become a haven of Dhamma where all of us can freely go to study and practice and where compassion, and not violence, reigns.
With gratitude to all and very happy Vesak,