Thursday, February 17, 2011

February 17

The Sri Lankan Daily News reports that there is a move in Colombo for “the old building where Col. Olcott lived and used as the old Ananda College and the building where the Buddhist schools were administered to declare them a National Heritage by National Heritage Minister Dr Jagath Balasuriya.” February 17, the date of Olcott’s passing, is still a day of remembrance in Sri Lanka, and the paper features a piece by S P Weerasekara “Col Henry Steel Olcott: Great name in Buddhist history,” in today’s edition, giving some background on his accomplishments.

With a sense of pride and utmost we have to point out to the country at large that as a result of pursuing the thinking of Col Olcott, Colombo Buddhist Theosophical Society was able to establish 460 Buddhist schools, including leading colleges, such as Ananda, Nalanda, Dharmapala, Dharmaraja, Visakha, and Musaeus College. Amidst various adversities, difficulties, obstacles great men like Col Olcott who directed our nation in the proper direction towards advancement, during a stage when Sinhala Buddhists had forgotten their good culture and traditions, it is our duty to commemorate them with a sense of deep gratitude. The younger generation in particular must be knowledgeable about the excellent qualities of this great leader, about his life and history and follow his path leading to advancement of our country. We have to record our highest gratitude to Madam Helena Blavatsky who assisted him in all his endeavours.

The rest of the article can be read here.

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