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The Role of Holy People

The news about Sitagu Sayadaw, one of the most famous and respectable monks in Myanmar, and his supporters’ visit the prisons in Yangon and Mandalay in August 2010 has been spoken about by the public for months here. It is the first time I have heard such kind of news. Many people have been sharing the video of Sitagu Sayadaw’s visit very willingly and there have been many follow up talks after watching it. Now in Myanmar, preaching by the holy monks has encouraged people to contribute humanitarian assistance to the needy communities.
The relations between the public and the monks are stronger and closer than any other public relationships in Myanmar. I personally witnessed the globally famous monks’ protest in September 2007 which resulted from the people’s voices worrying about unaffordable commodity prices. Thousands of monks and many nuns were marching and praying for people, an act which was against the junta’s law. Hundreds of non- Buddhists joined the Buddhist monks leading the campaign. The demonstration became so famous that the junta received international pressure asking for democracy in Myanmar. When many monasteries were approached by the military trucks sent to arrest the monks, any people nearby, alerted by the signal sounds, by hitting the kitchen pots marched to the monasteries. I was there too and happily witnessed the trucks driving away. We could stop them from trying to arrest the monks inside.
Although it was a great sadness that many protesters were arrested in demonstration, it was such a wonderful show of unity among the multi religious communities for the truth. It was lovely to hear from Sitagu Sayadaw that he was working together with a Baptist Father to build a free eye hospital in Chin state where
most of the people are Christians and about 90 percent of the patients are Christian .He also said he would collaborate with other religious leaders for providing humanitarian assistance to needy communities.
Recently in Myanmar, participation in humanitarian works by the monks and nuns has been dramatically rising. Most assistance has been provided to orphans and poor children for their continuous education for their better future. Among them, Sitagu Sayadaw has been incredibly remarkable, contributing a great deal of humanitarian aid, not for missionary purposes, but just for helping without regard to any religion or race. He has been building free eye specialist hospitals in every state and division in Myanmar. During the big cyclone relief projects in 2008, he and his supporters went to the most difficult-to-reach villages to provide emergency aid. He also helped a Belgium photographer who was not allowed to go to the relief camps. He took him in one of his delivery trucks and let him stay among the cyclone victims in a camp so the photographer would have a great chance for taking interesting photos which he then made into a book that was so popular that he needed to publish a second edition As he had intended to use the money for the victims, the photographer came back to Myanmar two times, once with a huge donation to build schools and the next time to visit those schools. If he had not seen that monk or if the monk had not taken the risk to help him, the people would have missed the opportunity to receive his big assistance. This is a right and brave decision from the monk and the photographer from another corner of the world.
S.N. Goenkanji, a famous world Vipassana teacher, beautifully noted at the Millennium World Peace Summit at the United Nations in 2000 that religion is not for dividing people. It is for uniting people to serve humanity.This thought has inspired me through my whole life. If all the holy people who take key roles in every religion follow this way, there will not be any sorrow in the world, which has witnessed violent attacks that lead to death and huge suffering. All holy Lords guide us to love all and all religious leaders give faith to their lords. Then, why is it not possible for them to lead in loving all? If the holy people played this noble role, the world would be like one family filled with love and care.

This article is part of a writing assignment for Voices of Our Future, which is providing rigorous web 2.0 and new media training for 30 emerging women leaders. We are speaking out for social change from some of the most unheard regions of the world.

Comments

nilima's picture

Congratulations NI NI for

Congratulations NI NI for your final piece! :):):)

NI NI AYE's picture

Thank you sister

Hi my beautiful sister

Thank you so much for showing your warm love! See you online.

Hugs and love

NI NI

Congratulations on Very Happy Teachers Day through ten years journey!

nilima's picture

:)

:)

rozjean's picture

Hi NI NI, I'm so proud of

Hi NI NI,
I'm so proud of you. Even with everything that is going on in your busy life, you managed to get this in four days early.
Good job! And, I agree with your premise that if the holy people would lead us in loving all, it would indeed be a better world!
Warm wishes,
rozjean

NI NI AYE's picture

I love you Roz

Hi Roz

You are not just responsible but you also make me warm and confident. I really love you Roz.See you soon.

Love and hug

NI NI

Congratulations on Very Happy Teachers Day through ten years journey!

rozjean's picture

You make me happy!

You make me happy!

Debra L's picture

Examples of love

Thank you Ni Ni for a beautiful article about the role of love in solving our problems. The examples you gave are heartwarming and motivating. ‘Religioun is not for the dividing people .It is for uniting people." This article also helps to unite us.

Love to you.

Debra

NI NI AYE's picture

You all are examples too.

Hi Debra

I believe that you and all WP enviroment are examples of love and unity.

Hugs

NI NI

Congratulations on Very Happy Teachers Day through ten years journey!

Angela U's picture

Fantastic!

Thanks so much for a really wonderful piece. I finished it feeling inspired and better informed.

Well done!
Angela

NI NI AYE's picture

Dear Angela Thank you so much

Dear Angela
Thank you so much for your warm comments. I a happy to meet you , friend.

Love

NI NI

Congratulations on Very Happy Teachers Day through ten years journey!

Farona's picture

It's interesting to know that

It's interesting to know that " The relations between the public and the monks are stronger and closer than any other public relationships in Myanmar."

I wish preachers will preach more by example !

A wonderful read :- )

NI NI AYE's picture

May your wish granted !

Dear Farone
I am very grateful to you for reading my articl and giving me beautiful feedback. Talk to you later.

Love

NI NI

Congratulations on Very Happy Teachers Day through ten years journey!

Sarvina's picture

Wonderful op-ed piece sister

Wonderful op-ed piece sister NI NI! I am so proud to call you sister. You have done many gorgeous work.

Love,

Sarvina

Regards,

Sarvina from Cambodia
VOF 2011 Correspondent

NI NI AYE's picture

Hi again sister

Hi sister

Thanks again for your continuous rewards.

Love

NI NI

Congratulations on Very Happy Teachers Day through ten years journey!

emillam's picture

Gentlewoman's Strength

I loved your op-ed piece, sister Ni Ni! You have written a piece that is inspiring and so very encouraging. I loved hearing how the unity is happening to bring about such wonderful things. Your role as a teacher is so very important in reporting this great news!! You've done fantastic reporting! Love, Elaine

Elaine R. Millam

NI NI AYE's picture

I love you sister!

Hi sister

Your words really fill me with more stength! Thank you a lot and I love you too sister.

Passionately

NI NI

Congratulations on Very Happy Teachers Day through ten years journey!

Dear Niniye!

Thank you so much for taking us up there in Burma, am so greateful to your piece .am so happy to hear what the monks & nuns are doing over there. Assistance has been provided to orphans and poor children for their continuous education for their better future. Among them, Sitagu Sayadaw has been incredibly remarkable, contributing a great deal of humanitarian aid, not for missionary purposes, but just for helping without regard to any religion or race. He has been building free eye specialist hospitals .

PEACE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! YOU REMIND ME OF GHANDI, THE MOST AMAZING MAN! oh i love this piece.............

If all the holy people who take key roles in every religion follow this way, there will not be any sorrow in the world, which has witnessed violent attacks that lead to death and huge suffering. All holy Lords guide us to love all and all religious leaders give faith to their lords. Then, why is it not possible for them to lead in loving all? If the holy people played this noble role, the world would be like one family filled with love and care.

This is great Niniye,

All the best

Warona

"success will not come if we wait for some other person or some other time " And when confronted conquer with love

NI NI AYE's picture

Lovely Warona !

Hi Warona

You are so lovely! My heart is filled with love and peace because of your friendly voice. Your quote also inspired me a lot too. I love you my sister Warona.

Hugs

NI NI

Congratulations on Very Happy Teachers Day through ten years journey!

Rachael Maddock-Hughes's picture

Good job!

Dear Ni Ni Aye,

I really like your perspective and solutions oriented message about religious leaders taking on a collaborative spirit to help overcome poverty and other issues around the globe. I was also touched when you talked about being at the protests and all the community members banging pots to warn the monks and try and keep the police away--I can really picture that!

Great job, keep up the good work!

Kind regards,

Rachael

"In every human heart there are a few passions that last a lifetime. They're with us from the moment we're born, and nothing can dilute their intensity." Rob Brezny

NI NI AYE's picture

Good voice!

Hi Rachael

Thank you so much for your cheerful voice and I am g;ad that you can feel it. I am so delightful when my writing makes someone feel and when a writing makes me feel something I like . Before I joined VOF I didn't have any chance to write such kind. I am so grateful to World Pulse for this great opportunity.

Love

NI NI

Congratulations on Very Happy Teachers Day through ten years journey!

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