The first Buddhist monk to be invited to a royal wedding has advised Prince William and Kate Middleton to meditate daily for a happy marriage.
The Venerable Bogoda Seelawimala, the most senior Buddhist monk in Britain, said that would help them get through any marital difficulties.
He said: “Discuss your problems and meditate together each morning to empty the mind of all your problems.”
Mr Seelawimala, 55, who is head priest at the London Buddhist Vihara in Chiswick, has been invited to join the 1,700-strong congregation at Westminster Abbey on April 29.
But the head of Britain’s…
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150,000 Buddhists also warned the couple to “set an example”, reminding them that they were role models.
The Chiswick monastery was the first to be built outside the Asian continent. Set up in 1926, it is home to five monks. More than 1,000 Buddhists attend.
The wedding is not Mr Seelawimala’s first link with royalty. Prince Charles visited the Vihara in 2005 following the 2004 Boxing Day tsunami. “He is a very warm-hearted man,” Mr Seelawimala said. “He was very interested in Buddhism and asked some great questions. He was very keen to know about meditation and how hard it was sit with your knees crossed for so long.”
Mr Seelawimala is keen for William to follow in his father’s footsteps and visit the monastery. He said: “I would love them to join in a meditation session.”
This newspaper article calls the head of a small monastery the “head of Britain’s 150,000 Buddhists.” That would be news to Britain’s Buddhists, 99% of whom will not have heard of the Ven. Seelawimala. Presumably the journalist is assuming that since Seelawimala is the “seniormost” monk in the UK (meaning he’s been a monk longer than anyone else) he somehow has ecclesiastical authority over all Buddhists in the country. That of course isn’t true.