Kiribathgoda Gnānānanda Thero
The Founder of MahamevnawaBuddhist Monastic Order
Most Venerable Kiribathgoda Gnānānanda Thero is the founder of the Mahamevnawa Buddhist Monastic Order. He was born in Sri Lanka in 1961. At the age of seventeen, he was ordained at Seruwila Mangala Raja Maha Vihara under the tutelage of the Most Venerable Dambagasare Sumedhankara Mahā Thero who was the Chief of Sri Kalyaniwansa Nikāya and the Abbot of Seruwila Mangala Raja Maha Vihara at the time.
After a traditional Sri Lankan monastic education, while studying for the Sinhala Honours Degree at Sri Jayawardhanapura University, he had an unexpected opportunity to read the Buddha’s discourses in thePāli Canon; because of this, he abandoned temple life and began to frequent forest monasteries and hermitages, offering his life to the Dhamma with a great desire to practice it.
Thereafter, having acquired a profound knowledge of the Dhamma by studying the Pāli Canon for a further ten years, the Venerable Thero collected myriad experiences in his life while living in the Himalayas in India and the jungle of Sri Pada in Sri Lanka.
Venerable Kiribathgoda Gnānānanda Thero, utilizing the experience gained from many years in monastic life, started Mahamevnawa Buddhist Monastery in August 1999. And while preaching the Dhamma and holding Dhamma programs in various parts of the island, he kindled in the people enormous faith in the Buddha’s Dispensation.
The Venerable Thero has written over 300 books in Sinhala and also several more books in English laguage on the Buddha’s Teachings in the Pāli Canon, revealing the sacred Word of the Buddha to the public.
Those Dhamma books along with CDs containing his melodious Dhamma sermons and Vandana verses which explain the Buddha’s discourses in simple Sinhala language have received much praise from the people. Venerable Kiribathgoda Gnānānanda Thero’s translation of the Sutta Pitaka into simple Sinhala language, helping it to be read and understood by people of any status in society, is a magnificent service to the Buddha’s Dispensation undertaken by the meritorious hand of the Venerable Thero out of compassion for humankind.
Teaching the Dhamma devoid of capricious personal opinions, by revealing only the Pure Word of the Buddha, is the unique quality of the Most Venerable Kiribathgoda Gnānānanda Thero’s outstanding Dhamma service.