Colombo, Sri Lanka -- Dr. A.T. Ariyaratne, the Sarvodaya leader, has been selected by the Buddhist Association of Japan - Bukkyo Dendo Kyokai, to receive the 45th Annual Cultural Award for the Promotion of Buddhism in the world. The only other Sri Lankan who had won this prestigious award was the late President J.R. Jayewardene in 1983.
Through Dr. Ariyaratne’s continuous and single-minded struggle for over fifty years through the Sarvodaya Movement, he has been able to demonstrate through action, in talks and in writings to the world, that Buddha’s Teachings can be effectively used in modern times.
He has shown how Buddha’s teachings can be used to build grassroots-up, non-violent, social, economic and political systems around the world. The Award ceremony will be held in Tokyo on March 17. Dr. Ariyaratne has already announced that the entire cash prize, along with donations from his relatives and friends, will be used to construct a dharmasala and a dagoba at the Palliyagodella Purana Viharaya which is situated next to the Sarvodaya Headquarters, Moratuwa.