Asokaramaya Buddhist Temple, Kalutara – The original Dharma Salava

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places to visit in kalutara
Asokaramaya Buddhist Temple (Kalutara , Sri Lanka) | Photo by Asokarama Maha Viharaya

History

When the Buddhist monk Aluthgama Sangharatne came to Etanamadala in 1873, he stayed at a hermitage at the jungles in Kalutara. The villagers loved the monk and his sermons, and one ardent disciple of his, an Elliyas Fernando, sought to build a hall for the monk, so he can conduct sermons for more people at a time. Donations started pouring in and the hall was built and named Dharma Salava.

Outside view of dharma salava of asokaramaya
Outside view of the Dharma Salava | Photo by Asokarama Maha Viharaya
The inside view of Dharma Salava of Kalutara asokaramaya temple
The inside view of Dharma Salava | Photo by Asokarama Maha Viharaya

Going in

In the centre of the Dharma Salava, you can find a relic chamber surrounded by tinier halls and a great drawing room. There are stone inscriptions on the wall says,

“This Temple Asokarama is offered to the Monks by the devotee Elliyas Fernando in the year 2411 Buddhist era, that is 1867 AD. In the midst of the Maha Sangha, the retinue of monks was headed by Ven. Siri Dhammarama Thera of Matara.”

Present day scenario

Exquisite art works and murals within the shrine room of asokaramaya temple
Exquisite art works and murals within the shrine room | Photo by Asokarama Maha Viharaya
Buddha statues inside the shrine room asokaramaya temple
Buddha statues inside the shrine room | Photo by Asokarama Maha Viharaya

The temple has been under the ministrations of Parakaduwe Saranankara, the chief monk of the Buddhist Monetary Council in Colombo since 1976. He is a well-known monk who heads some of the holiest temples in the Sri Lanka.

Location

Since you’re here check out other religious attractions around Kalutara as well 🙂

Kalutara Chaitya – World’s Only Hollow Buddhist Stupa

Discovering the Kalutara Bodhiya – A Sacred Tree Rooted in History

 

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