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Narada Maha Thera

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Narada Maha Thera

Narada Maha Thera
නාරද මහා ස්ථවිරයන් වහන්සේ
Religion Buddhism
School Theravada
Lineage Amarapura Sect
Dharma names Most.Ven.Narada Maha Thera
Nationality Sri Lankan
Born (1898-07-14)July 14, 1898
Kotahena, Colombo, Sri Lanka
Died October 2, 1983(1983-10-02) (aged 85)

The Venerable Narada Maha Thera (Sinhala:නාරද මහා ස්ථවිරයන් වහන්සේ), born Sumanapala Perera (14 July 1898 – 2 October 1983) was a Theravadan Buddhist monk and translator, the Superior of Vajirarama Temple in Colombo. He was a popular figure in his native country, Sri Lanka, and beyond.

He was born in Kotahena, Colombo to a middle-class family, educated at St. Benedict's College and Ceylon University College, and ordained at the age of eighteen.

In 1929 he represented Sri Lanka at the opening ceremony for the new Mulagandhakuti Vihara monastery at Sarnath, India, and in 1934 he visited Indonesia, the first Theravadan monk to do so in more than 450 years.[1] From that point on he travelled to many countries to conduct missionary work: Taiwan, Cambodia, Laos, South Vietnam, Singapore, Japan, Nepal, and Australia. In 1956, he visited the United Kingdom and the United States, and addressed a huge crowd at the Washington Monument. On 2 November 1960 Narada Maha Thera brought a bodhi tree to the South Vietnamese temple Thích Ca Phật Đài, and made many visits to the country during the 1960s.

Along with others (such as Piyadassi Maha Thera) he contributed to the popularization of the bana style dharma talk in the 1960s and brought the Buddhist teachings "to the day-to-day lives of the Westernized middle class in Sri Lanka."[2]


  • The Buddha and his Teachings
  • Buddhism in a Nutshell
  • The Buddhist Doctrine of Kamma and Rebirth
  • A Manual of Abhidhamma
  • An Elementary Pali Course
  • Life of Venerable Sariputta
  • Everyman’s Ethics
  • Facts of Life
  • Dhammapada, Pali text and translation
  • The Way to Nibbana
  • The Mirror of the Dhamma: a manual of Buddhist recitations and devotional texts
  • An Outline of Buddhism
  • The Life of Buddha, in his own words


  1. ^ Martin Ramstedt. Hinduism in modern Indonesia: a minority religion between local, national, and global interests. Routledge, 2004. Pages 49ff.
  2. ^ Wickremeratne, Swarna. 2006. Buddha in Sri Lanka: Remembered Yesterdays State University of New York Press. Albany New York. (p. 97)

External links

  • A Manual of Abhidhamma by Narada Mahathera
  • Biography by Gunaseela Vihanage
  • Pali course
  • The Buddha and His Teachings
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