Posted by: lrrp | September 10, 2004

Light of Poson at Tantirimale

About 45km from Anuradhapura, Thantirimale, located on the borders of the Wilpattu National Park, has over the centuries been considered a sacred site of Buddhist worship. Over the years pilgrims and visitors have marvelled at its colossal sedentary Buddha statue, almost eight feet in height carved in rock, the reclining Buddha statue, likened to the Gal Vihara images, its ancient stupa and many caves and inscriptions.

Tantirimale, formerly known as ‘Tiwakka Bamunu Gama’ was built during the Anuradhapura period in the 3rd Century BC and the Mahavamsa records that Sanghamitta Theri rested here when bringing the sacred Bo-sapling to Anuradhapura.

Atop the rock, is the Bodhi, one of the first eight offshoots (‘ashta palaruha bodhi’) of the original Bo-sapling brought in during the time of King Devanampiyatissa. It was given to the Brahmin Tiwakka who greeted the party and performed religious rites for them.

No longer the inaccessible jungle site it was not so long ago, this Poson, Tantirimale will be a focus of religious worship. Arrangements have been made to provide accommodation for devotees within the temple premises and the school, with adequate water and toilet facilities.

The Wijeya Group of Newspapers’ Aloka Pooja illumination of the Tantirimale shrine will begin on June 1. The Lankadeepa website will also be inaugurated at Tantirimale on that day.

Several donations of uniform material given by the staff of Wijeya Newspapers to the children of the Daham Pasal and books and writing material received from clients to the Tantirimale school will also be made. The school has 700 children and classes are conducted upto the A’Ls.

The Poson poya programmes on June 2 include observance of sil, meditation and bana preaching. Volunteers will hold a dansala for the large crowds expected. The Aloka Pooja will end on June 3.

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