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08/28/08
Mayawati enters Forbes’ power women list; Sonia slips in rank- Club all blasts for CBI probe: Mayawati -Admission racket busted; 7 held -‘Speed up relief measures’ -A few hours ago, Barack Obama was officially nominated as the Democratic candidate for president of the United States.-This has been a convention of extraordinary moments. Ted Kennedy passing the torch to a new generation. Michelle Obama moving the crowd to tears. And tonight, Joe Biden will give the biggest speech of his life. A deeper sense of happiness Buddhism teaches that the mind, not the wallet, is the path to contentment:
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Mayawati enters Forbes’ power women list; Sonia slips in rank
28 Aug, 2008, 1354 hrs IST,
PTI


Mayawati


NEW
YORK: Making her debut in the club of 100 most powerful women in the world,
Bahujan Samajwadi
Party chief Mayawati has joined Congress President Sonia
Gandhi in a list compiled by US magazine
Forbes.



While Gandhi, also
chairperson of the country’s ruling UPA alliance, has slipped from her previous
year’s sixth rank to 21st this year, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mayawati has
made her debut at 59th.



The
list also includes Indra Nooyi, the Indian-origin chief of global soft drink
major PepsiCo, at third position, up from fifth last year, and Indian
biotechnology firm Biocon’s Chief Kiran Mazumdar Shaw at
99th.



The list has been topped
by German chancellor Angela
Merkel.



On Gandhi, the magazine
said the Italian-born leader of India’s most powerful political party has by now
assumed the role of elder
stateswoman.


“Although she remains
firmly at the head of the country’s ruling party, a rising star, known by the
single name Mayawati, is challenging Gandhi’s position as the country’s most
powerful woman.”



Mayawati-led
BSP recently withdrew its outside support to Gandhi-led ruling combine in the
country.



The magazine said that
Mayawati has aligned herself with the nationalist Hindu BJP party and joined its
members in vociferously opposing Gandhi’s party’s historic agreement with the US
on nuclear cooperation.



The
magazine described Mayawati as the one “in the running to be prime minister,
from her perch as chief minister of Uttar Pradesh, India’s most populous state.”



Online edition of India’s National Newspaper
Thursday, Aug 28, 2008

Club all blasts for CBI probe: Mayawati

Atiq Khan


Chief Minister rejects Union Govt. proposal for probe into Kanpur blast
by Central agency

Request for CBI probe made by Union Minister of State for Home Sri Prakash Jaiswal

Two persons alleged to be Bajrang Dal activists killed in Kanpur blast


LUCKNOW: Chief Minister Mayawati has rejected the Union Government’s
proposal for an inquiry by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI)
into the Kanpur bomb blast case of August 24. She has suggested that
only if the Centre is willing for a probe by the investigating agency
in the Lucknow, Faizabad and Varanasi serial bomb blasts in the civil
courts premises, the Gorakhpur blast and the terrorist attack on the
CRPF camp in Rampur, along with the Kanpur incident, would the State
Government recommend a CBI probe into these incidents.

The letter containing the UP Government’s suggestions has been sent to the Union Government, Ms. Mayawati said on Wednesday.

Ms. Mayawati clarified that a CBI probe into the Kanpur bomb blast
case alone would not be recommended by her. She said the Congress-led
UPA Government had not proposed a CBI inquiry into the earlier serial
blast cases but it lost no time in asking for a probe once the name of
Bajrang Dal surfaced in the Kanpur incident. Nor was a CBI probe
proposed by the Centre into the terrorist attack in Ayodhya and Sankat
Mochan blasts in Varanasi during the Samajwadi Party regime, the Chief
Minister said. “This despite the fact that several lives were lost and
many others were injured in these terror-related incidents,” she added.

The Chief Minister told reporters here that the Union Government was
aware that those behind the conspiracy would be exposed in the
investigations being conducted by the UP police, so it proposed a CBI
probe. She alleged that the UPA Government was actually trying to
shield the Bajrang Dal and the Bharatiya Janata Party.

She said CBI inquiries had been recommended in the past into 19
important and sensitive cases but the State Government’s request was
turned down by the Central investigating agency by taking the plea of
paucity of officers and large number of pending cases.

Stating that investigations were being conducted by the Special Task
Force and Anti-Terrorist Squad into the Lucknow, Faizabad, Varanasi,
Gorakhpur and Rampur incidents, Ms. Mayawati said considerable progress
had been made in these cases.

The request for a CBI probe had been made by the Union Minister of
State for Home, Sri Prakash Jaiswal, who is MP from Kanpur, to the
Chief Minister by a letter (No.1850/VIP/MOS (SJ)/2008, dated August 26,
2008). The State Government’s reply has been sent to Satyanand Mishra,
Secretary, Personnel and Training Department, Union Ministry of
Personnel, Public Complaints and Pension, by the UP Principal Secretary
(Home), Kunwar Fateh Bahadur.

Two persons alleged to be Bajrang Dal activists were killed in the
blast in Mishra Lodge in Kanpur’s Rajiv Nagar locality this past
Sunday.

Admission racket busted; 7 held

Lucknow: Uttar Pradesh Police have arrested seven “members of a
gang” allegedly involved in a racket of duping people in the name of
providing them admissions in private medical and engineering colleges.

Following an FIR registered by a person from Firozabad that the
gang deprived him of Rs.20 lakh in the name of facilitating admission
in a medical college, a Special Task Force team swung into action and
on the information collected, arrested the seven here. The gang used to
prepare fake documents to hoodwink victims, sources said.

‘Speed up relief measures’

Special Correspondent

LUCKNOW: Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mayawati on Wednesday asked
officials to expedite relief and rehabilitation measures on a war
footing in the flood-affected areas.

Addressing a press conference, the Chief Minster said 21 districts
had been ravaged by the floods, with 3,691 villages being hit by the
swirling waters of major rivers.

Ms. Mayawati directed Irrigation Minister Naseemuddin Siddiqui and
Chief Secretary Atul Kumar Gupta to monitor the situation and ensure
the speedy implementation of relief measures. She also ordered the
distribution of money and material to the affected people.

Around 721 people perished in floods and heavy rainfall in Uttar
Pradesh. The Gomti river level has been rising for the past four days.

The flood waters of the river have submerged several areas of Lucknow.

Besides, inundating many outlying localities and villages situated
on the river bank, affecting about one lakh people, flood waters of the
Gomti entered the Vipul Khand area of the posh Gomtinagar locality on
Tuesday.

Some districts, including Kanour Dehat, were in the grip of viral
fever and malaria, causing the death of three dozen people.

Jagatheesan –

A few hours ago, Barack Obama was officially nominated as the Democratic candidate for president of the United States.

And just a few moments ago, I accepted our party’s nomination for vice president.

I made my case to everyone watching — Barack Obama will secure America at home and restore our reputation abroad. And John McCain will only extend the failed policies of George Bush.

But this isn’t my moment. It’s all of ours.

And the fight ahead will be like nothing you’ve ever seen.

The stakes couldn’t be higher, and Barack and I need your help right now.

Please make a donation of $5 or more now and support this campaign to bring the change we need:

https://donate.barackobama.com/tonight

Thank you for making this possible,

Joe

Jagatheesan –

 
This has been a convention of extraordinary moments.
Ted Kennedy passing the torch to a new generation. Michelle Obama moving the crowd to tears. And tonight, Joe Biden will give the biggest speech of his life.



Millions of Americans are watching and counting on us to win this election and deliver real change.



They’re not just counting on Barack and Joe — they are counting on
you. Hillary couldn’t have said it better: “None of us can afford to
sit on the sidelines.”


This is our one shot, so let’s roll up our sleeves — or risk
another four or eight years of the same disastrous Bush-McCain
policies.

Sign up right now for events happening this week in your community.


Tomorrow, Barack will accept the Democratic nomination, and
supporters all across the country are getting together to be a part of
this historic moment.



Then, this weekend, we’ll kick off the biggest
voter registration and mobilization drive in the history of politics.



Attend a Convention Watch Party this Thursday evening, and find a Weekend of Action event near you — or host one yourself:


http://my.barackobama.com/organizeforchange

If this convention has shown us anything, it’s how much energy and enthusiasm is out there — and how much passion for change.


Voters in all 50 states are realizing what’s at stake. And
they’re hearing Barack’s message of change in every corner of the
country.



Let’s seize this incredible opportunity and work together to get out the vote like never before.

Attend a Convention Watch Party and host or sign up for a Weekend of Action event near you.



Supporters like you have brought us this far, but there’s still a lot work to be done.



At this crucial time in our campaign, it’s never been more important to get involved.



Thanks,



Jon



Jon Carson


National Field Directo
r
Obama for America

Sabbadanam dhammadanam jinati
‘The gift of truth excels all other gifts.’
The world is continuous flux and is impermanent.
Transient are conditioned things. Try to accomplish your aim with diligence. 

(The Exalted, Blessed, Noble, Awakened Great Mind with full awareness)

The religion of the future will be a cosmic religion.
It should transcend personal God and avoid dogma and theology. Covering
both the natural and the spiritual, it should be based on a religious
sense arising from the experience of all things natural and spiritual
as a meaningful unity. Buddhism answers this description. If there is any religion that could cope with modern scientific needs it would be Buddhism. (Albert Einstein)

Do not believe in anything simply because you have heard it. Do not
believe in anything simply because it is spoken and rumored by many. Do
not believe in anything because it is found written in your religious
books. Do not believe in anything merely on the authority of your
teachers and elders. Do not believe in traditions because they have
been handed down for many generations. But after observation and
analysis, when you find anything that agrees with reason and is
conducive to the good and benefit of one and all, then accept it and
live up to it.
                                                               -(The Exalted, Blessed, Noble, Awakened Great Mind with full awareness)

I will teach you the Truth and the Path leading to the Truth.

One is one’s own refuge, who else could be the refuge? ..The wise man makes an island of himself that no flood can overwhelm.

It is proper for you to doubt .. do not go upon report .. do not go upon tradition..do not go upon hearsay..

Never by hatred is hatred appeased, but it is appeased by kindness. This is an eternal truth.

O
Brahmana, it is just like a mountain river, flowing far and swift,
taking everything along with it; there is no moment, no instant, no
second when it stops flowing, but it goes on flowing and continuing. So
Brahmana, is human life, like a mountain river.

‘Wherefore,
brethren, thus must ye train yourselves : Liberation of the will
through love will develop, we will often practice it, we will make it
vehicle and base, take our stand upon it, store it up, thoroughly set
it going.’

                                                                –(The Exalted, Blessed, Noble, Awakened Great Mind with full awareness)


A deeper sense of happiness

Buddhism teaches that the mind, not the wallet, is
the path to contentment:

Buddhism and human values

ACCORDING to Buddhism, for a man to be perfect there are two
qualities that he should develop equally: compassion (Karuna) on one
side, and wisdom (Panna) on the other.

Here compassion represents love, charity, kindness, tolerance and
such noble qualities on the emotional side, and wisdom (Panna) on the
other.

Here compassion represents love, charity, kindness, tolerance and
such noble qualities on the emotional side, or qualities of the heart,
while wisdom would stand for the intellectual side or the qualities of
the mind.

If one develops only the emotional, neglecting the intellectual, one
may become a good hearted fool; while to develop only the intellectual
side neglecting the emotional may turn one into a hard-hearted intellect
without feeling for others.

To be perfect, therefore, one has to develop both equally. That is
the aim of the Buddhist way of life. Those who think that Buddhism is
interested only in lofty ideals, high normal and philosophical values
and that it ignores the social and economic welfare of people are wrong.

The Buddha was interested in the happiness of men. To him happiness
was not possible without leading a pure life based on moral and
spiritual principles.

But he knew that leading such a life was hard in unfavourable
material and social conditions.

Buddhism does not consider material welfare as an end in itself: it
is only a means to an end — a higher and nobler end. But it is a means
which is indispensable, indispensable in achieving a higher purpose for
man’s happiness.

So Buddhism recognises the need of certain minimum material
conditions favourable to spiritual success.

A man named Dighajanu once visited the Buddha and said: ‘Venerable
sir, we are ordinary lay men leading the family life with wife and
children. Would the blessed one teach us some doctrines which will be
conducive to our happiness in this world and hereafter?’

In reply the Buddha tells him that there are four things which are
conducive to a man’s happiness in this world.

First: He should be skilled, efficient, earnest, and energetic in
whatever profession he is engaged, and he should know it well.

Second: He should protect his income, which he has thus earned
righteously, with the sweat of his brow. This refers to protecting
wealth from thieves etc. All these ideas should be considered against
the background of the period.

Third: He should have good friends who are faithful, learned,
virtuous, liberal and intelligent, who will help him along the right
path away from evil.

Fourth: He should spend reasonably in proportion to his income,
neither too much nor too little, i.e. he should not hoard wealth
avariciously nor should he be extravagant — in other words he should
live within his means.

Then the Buddha expounds the four virtues conducive to a lay man’s
happiness hereafter:

(1) Saddha: He should have faith and confidence in moral, spiritual
and intellectual values

(2) Sila: He should abstain from destroying, from adultery, from
falsehood and from intoxicating drinks

(3) Caga: He should practice charity, generosity without attachment
and craving for his wealth

(4) Panna: He should develop wisdom which leads to the complete
destruction of suffering to the realisation of Nirvana.

Buddha encouraged and stimulated each person to develop himself and
to work out his own emancipation for man has the power to liberate
himself from all bondage through his own personal effort and
intelligence.

Today, we hope, with a better understanding of our common humanity
and common values, we can say ‘hatred does not cease by hatred, but it
ceases by love and compassion”. Buddha’s verse is as follows:

Nahi verena verani sammantidha kudha canam

Averena ca sammanti eso dhammo sanamtano.

Conquer anger by love and compassion, evil by good; conquer the miser
with liberality and the lair with truth. Let us think good, do good and
pray good for the welfare of mankind.

Sabbe satta sukhita bhavantu — May all beings be happy. Nibbanam
Paramam Sukham — Nirvana is the supreme bliss of the world.

Courtesy: Daily Star, Bangladesh

——————-

Ancient Buddhist links between Tamil Nadu and Sri Lanka

THE Palk Strait which lies between Tamil Nadu and Sri Lankan land
masses, is seen as a divider, separating two different distinct
ethnicities, religions, cultures and political entities.

But there was a phase in history, between the early years of the
Christian era and the 14th century, when Tamil Nadu and Sri Lanka
enjoyed very close ties, thanks to a shared interest in Buddhism.

At that time, the Palk Strait was not seen as a divider. Then
Buddhism was a bridge between Sri Lanka and Tamil Nadu.

The land of the Tamils has been called Tamilakum, which means a land
where the language Tamil is spoken. Tamilakum was a region which had the
north-east Ventcata hill or the Tiruppati hill, the southern part of the
modern Andhra Pradesh, as its northern border, Kanniya Kumari or Cape
Comerin as the southern border, the bay of Bengal and the Arabian Sea as
its eastern and western borders respectively.

The ancient Tamilakum encompassed modern Kerala too. Tamilakum was
actually located in the southern part of the Indian peninsula. Present
Tamil Nadu State is much smaller than the Tamilakum. Now Tamil Nadu is
the only land where the language Tamil is spoken. At present Tamil
country is famous as Tamil Nadu.

According to Historians, Buddhism began to make an impact on Tamil
Nadu only in the 4th century AD. Buddhism flourished in Tamil Nadu in
Two phases. (1) The early years of Pullava rule (400-650 AD) (2) The
Chola period (mid 9th to early 14th century AD). Buddhism had then
enjoyed a very remarkable popularity in the Tamil soil.

Although Buddhism has almost extinct from Tamil Nadu, it has
contributed a great deal to the enrichment of Tamil culture and has
exerted a significant influence, both directly and indirectly, on the
Tamil religious and spiritual consciousness, present as well as past.

It has expressed itself in exquisite artistic forms and given an
enduring colour and richness to Tamil culture as a whole. It has exerted
a profound influence on the existing religious and social institutions,
language and literature as well as on art and architecture.

The fascinating story of the historical links - Golden threads
between Buddhism in Tamil Nadu and Sri Lanka was narrated by Dr. Shu
Hikosake Director Professor of Buddhism, Institute of Asian Studies in
Madras in his book “Buddhism in Tamil Nadu a new Perspective.”

Dr. Hikosaka’s study is based on his doctoral dissertation submitted
to the University of Madras. In the conclusion he explains: “Thus
Buddhism remained orphaned in all spheres without proper patronage and
encouragement.

The Buddhist monks looked for greener pastures in the neighbouring
countries. They found propitious soil in Ceylon and South East Asian
countries.

A comparative study of the development of Buddhism in Tamil Nadu and
the neighbouring countries clearly shows the fact that when Buddhism was
in decline in Tamil Nadu, it witnessed tremendous growth in the
neighbouring countries.

The monks of Tamil Nadu, who had left from their native land, have
contributed a great deal for the growth of Buddhism abroad. In this
sense we may say that the Tamil Buddhist genius was not destroyed but
sublimated in another direction where it has grown with fresh vigour and
vivacity.”

The earliest inscriptions in Tamil Nadu belong to the third century
BC. They are written in Brahmi character of the time, on the walls of
the natural caves in the Tamil districts of Madura, Ramnad and
Tirnnelveli.

They are of considerable interest to students of South Indian
Buddhism. It is learnt from these Brahmi inscriptions which
palaeographically belong to 3rd century BC that Buddhism had come into
Tamil Nadu even then.

It was to Asoka and his son Mahinda that the introduction of Buddhism
into Tamil Nadu may be attributed. Epigraphical evidence seems to
confirm this statement.

In his Rock-Edict No. 3, Asoka says that his Dharma Vijaya prevailed
in the border kingdoms of the Colas, Pandyans and at Tambapanni. But it
was his son Mahinda who was responsible for the introduction of Buddhism
in Tamil Nadu.

In this task, he was helped by Maha Aritta, a nephew of the Sri
Lankan king Devanampiyatissa. Mahinda is said to have erected seven
viharas at Kaveripattinum while he was on his way to Sri Lanka.

Some Indian scholars are of the opinion that Aritta or Maha-Aritta
might have lived in the caves of the village of Arittapatti in Madura,
which is in Tamil Nadu.

According to Dr. Hikosaka Buddhism might have gone to Sri Lanka from
Tamil Nadu, contrary to the general impression.

“Taking all evidence into account, we may fairly conclude that
Mahendra and the Buddhist missionaries who went to Ceylon (Sri Lanka)
could have embarked for the island from the East coast of the Tamil
country. So, it is quite probable that the Tamil country received
Buddhism directly through missionaries of Asoka.

Buddhism might have gone to Ceylon (Sri Lanka) from Tamil Nadu by
sea-route, a route by which one can reach Ceylon (Sri Lanka) easily.

Since there existed close cultural affinities between Ceylon (Sri
Lanka) and the Tamil country from time immemorial, the Buddhist
activities in India could have easily influenced in some way or other
the Buddhism of Ceylon (Sri Lanka)” says Dr. Hikosaka.

It is interesting and appropriate to investigate the interactions of
Buddhist monastic centres between Sri Lanka and Tamil Nadu.

The remains of a Buddhist monastery excavated at Kaveripattinum which
could be assigned to the fourth century, are believed to be the earliest
archaeological relics of Buddhism in Tamil Nadu.

During the Pallava period, Tamil Nadu boasted of “outstanding
Buddhist monks who had made remarkable contributions to Buddhism thought
and learning. A Buddhist writer Buddhadatta or Thera Buddhaatta as he is
called lived during the time of Accyutarikkanta, Kalabra ruler of the
Cola-nadu. Under the patronage of this ruler, Buddhadatta wrote many
books.

In his book Vinayaviniccaya, he says that due to the patronage of
this king he was able to compose this work. In the Abhidhammaratara he
gives a glowing account at Kaveripattinum, Uragapuram, Bhutamangalam and
Kanchipuram and the Mahavihara at Ceylon (Sri Lanka). While he was at
Sri Lanka, he composed many Buddhist works such as Uttara-viniccaya
Ruparupa Vibhaga Jinalankara etc.

Buddhaghosha, contemporary of Buddhadatta composed many Buddhist
commentaries. Buddhaghosha is a Tamil monk, who made a remarkable
contribution to Buddhism in Sri Lanka.

He stayed and studied Buddhist precepts at Mahavihara in Anuradhapura.
The Visuddhimagga was the first work of Buddhaghosha which was written
while he was in Ceylon.

According to Mahavamsa, it is a summary of the three Pitakas together
with the commentary. When Buddhaghosha had been staying at Granthakara
Pirivena at Anuradhapura, he completed his task of rendering Sinhalese
commentaries of Tripitakas into Pali. After a considerable period of
religious service in Sri Lanka, he returned to Tamil Nadu.

After Buddhaghosha, the important Theravada monk from the Tamil
country was Dhammapala. Dhammapala lived in the Mahavihara at
Anuradhapura. He composed paramathadipani which was a commentary on
Buddhaghosha’s work on Khuddaka Nikaya and Paramathamanjusa, which was a
commentary on Buddhaghosha’s Visuddhimagga.

A close study of the three Buddhist monks viz Buddhadatta,
Buddhaghosha and Dhammapala shows that Tamil Buddhists were closely
associated with the Sri Lankan Buddhists around the 5th century AD.

The interaction between Tamil Nadu and Sri Lankan monks finds mention
in “Manimekalai”. The 6th century Tamil Buddhist work Manimekali by
Sattanar, is perhaps the most famous of the work done in Tamil Nadu. It
is a work expounding the doctrines and propagating the values of
Buddhism.

The interaction between Tamil Nadu and Sri Lankan monks finds mention
in “Manimekalai” which is set in the Tamil towns of Kaveipumpattinam
Kanchi and Vanchi. There is mention about the presence of wondering
monks of Sri Lanka in Vanchi, which was the capital of the Chera Kings
of Tamil Nadu. The Chinese traveller, Tsuan Tsang, wrote that there were
around 300 Sri Lankan monks in the monastery at the Southern sector of
Kanchipuram.

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