Dear Sayas and Colleagues,
Last weekend saw the largest congregation of Theravada Buddhist monks in the US, and probably in the West.
They came to pay their last respect to Venerable Sayadaw U Silanandabhivamsa, Chief Resident Monk of Dhammananda Vihara, Half Moon Bay. Sayadaw is also the Rector of the International Theravada Buddhist Missionary University (ITBMU), and Spiritual Director of Tathagata Meditation Center (TMC, San Jose), CMBT (Mexico), and numerous religious organizations throughout the world.
Devotees in Singapore and Australia held special "soon" dana in memory of Sayadaw U Silananda.
Morning Session, Aug 21, 2005
On the morning of Sunday, August 21, 2005, 50+ Sayadaws were offered requisites at the Dhammananda Vihara. Metta Vihari Chanting Group recited Dhammacakkapavatna Sutta (Buddha's First Sermon). One of Sayadaw's early books is entitled "Taya Oo" (First Sermon). A special reprint of "Taya Oo" was offered as dhamma dana on Sayadaw's 75th birthday.
The devotees took Five Precepts. U Jotalankara then gave a talk on the [lesser known] qualities of Sayadaw U Silananda. The samgha recited Metta Sutta (Discourse on Loving Kindness). Rev. Dr. Nandamalabhivamsa, Pro-Rector (Academic), ITBMU gave a dhamma talk, and also led the session on sharing merits. Saya U Myat Htoo (Civil 68), President, Theravada Buddhist Society of America, said words of thanks to doctors and nurses who took care of Sayadaw's health regularly and during the recent illness, volunteers who spent hours of long vigil during Sayadaw's hospitalization, devotees and well-wishers who donated to Sayadaw's Health Fund and Sayadaw's Funeral Fund, ...
Evening Session, Aug 21, 2005
The evening session, originally scheduled for 3 p.m. started one hour earlier. Sayadaw U Silananda's Memorial Service was held at Duggan Mortuary, Daly City. The ceremony included:
1. Opening the ceremony by reciting "Namo Tassa" three times.
2. On behalf of the Religious Affairs Ministry of Myanmar,
3. Sayadaw's biography read in four languages:
- Burmese/Myanmar [by U Osadha],
- English [by U Hla Min],
- Vietnamese [by Sukhavati], and
- Mandarin/Chinese [by Vanna Singhi]
4. Reading messages from the various religious organization
- State Samgha Maha Nayaka
[by Ven. Dr. Nandamalabhivamsa, Pro-Rector (Academic), ITBMU]
- Minister of Religious Affairs
[by Dr. Myint Kyi, Pro-Rector (Admin), ITBMU]
- Shwe Kyin Sect
[by Ven. U Jotalankara]
- International Theravada Buddhist Missionary University
[by Ven. Dr. Dhammapiya]
- Mahasi Meditation Center
[by Ven. Indika]
- Sri Lankan Buddhist Societies of America
[represented by Ven. Dr. Walpola Piyananda]
5. Eulogies by disciples
- Ven. U Nandisena
[translator of Sayadaw's works into Spanish]
- Saya U Myat Htoo
- Dr. Than Htay (Sayadaw's nephew)
[representing Sayadaw's family]
- Mr. Luyen Pham (TMC)
["Sayadaw, you said that you would not retire ..."]
- Ms. Rutty Besoudou (CMBT)
[who attended Diploma couse at ITMBU]
- Ms. Sarah Marks
[editor of some of Sayadaw's works, and coordinator of
- Bhikshuni Zinai
[doctorate in religious studies, ...,
accompanied Sayadaw on some dhamma duta missions]
6. Special dhamma talk by Sitagu Ven. Nanissara [in English and
Burmese/Myanmar] highlighting the successful missionary work and
virtues of Ven. U Silananda.
7. Closing the ceremony by reciting "Anicca vata sankhara" three