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Nobel Peace Laureate Aung San Suu Kyi Visits the Birthplace of Buddha

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Buddhistdoor International Sagar Mani Shiwakoti 2014-06-24

 Aung San Suu Kyi received a warm welcome at the Dharmakirti Vihara at Naghal, Kathmandu when she visited on June 16, 2014. Students and teachers of the local Prabhat Secondary School stood in a queue to welcome the Nobel Peace laureate and world famous democratic leader of Myanmar, was making a visit to her old home. She had spent nine month satthe Vihara forty years ago in1974.

The enthusiastic crowd, who seemed so eager to be in her presence, showered her with bouquets of flowers and silk shawls. Deputy Prime Minister Prakash Man Singh escorted Suu Kyi to Dharmakirti Vihara, also known as the Shreegha Vihara.

Suu Kyi spent about two hours at the Vihara with guruma Dhammawati under whose guidance she had spent nine months taking lessons on Buddhism forty years ago and in turn Aung San Suu Kyi had taught her English language and run English classes for other students. She spent her time learning about Buddhism and teaching English to others, said the general secretary of Shree Gha Vihar Development Committee Guhya Ratna Shakya. She was a good, compassionate teacher. Guruma Dhammawati herself also, however, has spent 14 years in Myanmar for her studies.

Guruma Dhammawati, officials of the Shreegha Development Committee, and social workers congratulated Suu Kyi, who said that she remembered the bygone days at the Vihara vividly. After the formal program, Suu Kyi spent some intimate moments with guruma Dhammawati, who offered her blessings to Aung San Suu Kyi and prayed for her eternal happiness.

I am very much influenced by the sacrifice, dedication and wisdom of lord Buddha, Suu Kyi said. My struggle began when I was in Nepal. I'll always remember Nepal and my beloved guruma and shall come back when time permits. She also said that Nepal was a pilgrimage site for all Buddhists and peace lovers of the world.

Suu Kyi visited Lumbini on June 15. At Lumbini she said that if we are able to discard our lust for weapons and follow the path of Buddha, peace will prevail in the world and the foundations of democracy will eventually be strong. She said that her happiness knew no bounds as she at last could visit Lumbini after so many visits to Nepal. She visited and worshipped at the Myanmar Temple in Lumbini.

Acharya Karma Syangbo Lama , the vice chair of the Lumbin Development Trust and Bal Krishna Panthi, the Chief District Officer of Rupandehi District, gave Suu Kyi the latest information on Lumbini and recent developments.

The advocate of democracy for Myanmar and the world, Suu Kyi, came to Nepal at the invitation of BP Memorial Trust to mark centenary birth celebrations for the late Prime Minister BP Koirala. She delivered a speech on ‘Relevance of Social Democracy in the Contemporary World’ on June 14. During her stay in Nepal, Suu Kyi met the President, Prime Minister and the heads of different political parties of Nepal.

Aung San Suu Kyi had visited Nepal in 1960 when her mother was the then Burmese ambassador to Nepal and a few times after that in 1974, with her husband. She has written 'Let's Visit Nepal', a book to promote Nepal in the international arena. The Nobel peace laureate and leader of Myanmar’s National League for Democracy returned to Myanmar on June 16, concluding her brief visit to the country.