Tampalawela Dhammaratana

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Tampalawela Dhammaratana
Religion Buddhism
School Theravada
Education University of Kelaniya
Nationality French and Sri Lankan
Born 1956 (age 61–62)
Tampalawela, Uva Province, Sri Lanka
Religious career
Ordination 1976
Present post Vice-President of World Fellowship of Buddhists

Ven. Dr. Tampalawela Dhammaratana, French and Sri Lankan national, was born in Sri Lanka and received his traditional Buddhist education from Sangharaja Pirivena in Kandy and Sunetradevi University College. During his very early education, he had special privilege to study under the guidance of leading traditional Buddhist monastic scholars (Royal Pandits), in Sri Lanka and he became in proficient in Pali, Sanskrit and Sinhala languages and especially Theravada Buddhism. He received his Buddhist ordination under the instruction of Most Ven. Pitadeniye Sri Ratanapala Sangha Nayake Thera of Uva Wellassa Provinces in Sri Lanka and later he received his Higher Ordination in 1976 at Siam Maha Nikaya, Malwatte Chapter in Kandy, Sri Lanka.

After his traditional Buddhist education he entered to the University of Kelaniya, Sri Lanka, where he obtained his Bachelor of Arts Degree in Social and Human Sciences in 1984. In the same year he left his mother country and entered to the University of Paris, France where he completed his French language Diplomas and received his master's degree in Philosophy under the guidance of Prof. François Lyotard with an upper class distinction. He further continued his higher education in France and obtained his M.Phil and Ph.D Degrees in Comparative Indian Philosophy from the University of Sorbonne (Paris IV), under the guidance of Prof. Michel Hulin in 1989 and 1994 respectively. His master piece research on Doctoral thesis is entitled on “Some Aspect of Anatta (no-soul) Doctrine Depicted in Pali Canon”. In addition to that he has pursued his Post-Doctoral studies under the supervision of Prof. Pierre Sylvain Filliozat at the Higher Studies School (Ecole Pratiques des Hautes Etudes, IV Section) at the University of Sorbonne, (Paris IV), France in the area of Philology.

In 1999, he joined UNESCO as a Consultant at the Division of Philosophy and Ethics and successfully contributed to implement the program of ‘Universal Ethics’. Besides that, as a Copy-Editor, he also contributed to UNESCO Program of ‘the History of Humanity, Scientific and Cultural Development’, at the Division of Cultural Pluralism and Intercultural Dialogue, Histories Section to publish History of Humanity Volume VI and VII, (which is a general history of the 18th through 20th centuries), under the guidance of international scientific Committee presided by Prof. Georges Henri Dumont, Royal Academy of Belgium, published by UNESCO in 2008.

At present he is a Consultant and the Director of Buddhist Links at UNESCO Headquarters in Paris, France and contributes in the promotion of Buddhist Education, culture, humanitarian and social development, and preservation of tangible and intangible cultural heritages in Worldwide.

From 2012 to 2016, he gave a series of lectures on Buddhism during the summer holidays at the famous Shaolin Monastery in China.

He became in October 2016 the General Director of the Linh Son Buddhist Academy located at 92-94, Pasteur Street, 94400 Vitry-sur-Seine, France.

He was appointed on 21 March 2018 the Buddhist representative of the ICDV (International Council for the Day of Vesak) at the UN (United Nations) located in New York.

Venerable Dhammaratana at the United Nations in New York.

Ven. Dr. Tampalawela Dhammaratana is a well known scholar and an international Buddhist leader who has been playing a vital role in development of Buddhism, education, peace and humanitarian development in Worldwide.

Distinctions and awards[edit]

1. Doctor Honoris Causa, conferred by the Mahachulalangkorn Rajavidyalaya University in Thailand in May 2009, in honour of Dhamma Propagation in Europe and the development of World Peace.

2. Atish Dipankar Gold Medal awarded by the Government of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh in February 2009, in honour of the promotion of Inter-cultural Dialogue and World Peace

3. Peace Ambassador, conferred by the Universal Peace Foundation in New York, in 2006 in recognition of exceptional contribution in promotion of inter-cultural dialogue and Culture of Peace.

Membership of the International Organizations[edit]

1. President, International Council for Buddhist Development in Sri Lanka (since 2010) 2. President, Buddhist Humanities Action (since 2008) 3. Vice-Chair, International Council of the United Nations Day of Vesak (since 2004) 4. President, French Buddhist Union, (2000-2002) 5. Vice-President, World Fellowship of Buddhists (since 1998) 6. Executive Board Member, World Buddhist Sangha Council (since 1995) 7. Member, European Buddhist Union (since 1995) 8. Secretary General, World Linh Son Buddhist Congregation (1995-2010)

Membership of International Academic Organizations[edit]

1. Advisor, International Association of Buddhist Universities (IABU), (since 2007) 2. Council Member, World Buddhist University, in Bangkok, (since 2000) 3. Member, International Association of Buddhist Studies, USA (1994-1998) 4. Member, CREOPS (Centre de Recherche sur l’Extrême Orient de Paris, Sorbonne, (1993-1997). 5. Member, Societe Asiatique, Paris, (1992-1998)


(a) “Older Generations”, Chapter 10, Sarvapalli Gopal and Sergei L. Tikhvinsky (eds.),In: History of Humanity, Scientific and Cultural Development, Vol. VII, the 20th Century, Published by UNESCO, 2008

(b) Copy Editor, in the collaboration of Chief Editors, Sarvapalli Gopal and Sergei L. Tikhvinsky (eds.), History of Humanity, Scientific and Cultural Development, Vol. VII,the 20th century, published by UNESCO, 2008.

(c) Copy Editor, in the collaboration of Chief Editors, Peter Mathias, and Nikolai Todorov (eds.), History of Humanity, Scientific and Cultural Development, Vol. VI,the 19th century, published by UNESCO, 2008.

(d) “Buddhist Ethics and Universal Responsibility”, to the Felicitation Volume, in honour of Most Ven. K. Anuruddha Maha Thera, former Vice-Chancellor, University of Pali and Buddhist Studies in Sri Lanka, ed. By K. Dhammajoti, published in Hong Kong, 2008.

(e) “Humanistic Buddhism and Social Inequality”, by Rupaha Sirinanda, Yalagamuwe Dhammissara, Kivulegedara Narada (eds.)in: Vidurupola Siri Piyatissa Mahanahimi Felicitation Volume, (pp. 214–234), Mattegoda, Sri Lanka, 2008.

(f) "World Culture and Buddhist Values", Hsi Lai University Journal, ed. By Ananda Guruge, Los Angeles, USA, 2005

(g) "Contemporary Sri Lankan Sanskrit Poerty: The Yasodharaacaritam by Davuldena Jnanesvara Mahasthavira” (2nd instalment),(Bhikkhu Pasadika and T.Dhammaratana eds.and translates) in: Bulletin d’études indiennes, Nos. 22-23 (Paris, 2004-2005), pp. 287–305.

(h) “Buddhism in European Culture and its Contribution to World Peace”, Keynote Speech in 2004, Venice, Italy.

(i) “Education as Human Right: Buddhist Perspectives”, Hsi Lai University Journal, ed. By Ananda Guruge, Los Angeles, USA, 2003.

(j) "Regret' - Contemporary Sri Lankan Sanskrit Poetry: Pascaattaapah by Davuldena Jnanesvara",(Bhikkhu Pasadika and T.Dhammaratana eds.and translates) in: Buddhist Studies Review, Vol. 20, No. 2 (London, 2003) pp. 183–188.

(k) "Contemporary Sri Lankan Sanskrit Poetry: The Ya´sodharaacaritam by Davuldena Jnansvara Mahaasthavira (Bhikkhu Pasadika and T. Dhammaratana eds. and translates,)(1st instalment), in: Bulletin d'études indiennes, No. 21.1 (Paris, 2003), pp. 47-70.

(l) “The Place of Humanistic Buddhism in UNESCO Universal Ethics Project”, Hsi Lai University Journal, ed. By Ananda Guruge, Los Angeles, USA, 2002.

(m) “The Buddhist Vision of Globalization for the Third Millennium”, published By Buddhist Foundation, London, 2002

(n) “Une Ecole Bouddhique Originale: les Personnalistes, (Puggalavadins)”, Essay in Honour of Prof. Y. Karunadasa, ed. by K. Dhammajoti, Colombo, Sri Lanka, 1997

(o) Co-Editor, with Bhikkhu Pasadika, Dharmaduta, Mélanges offerts au Dr. Thich Huyen-Vi, à l’occasion de son soixante –dixième anniversaire, You Feng, 1997, Paris.

(p) "Une nouvelle lecture du Syamasandesa de 1756 A.C. conservé au Malwatte Viharaya de Kandy, Sri Lanka", avec collaboration de Mme. J. Filliozat, Dharmaduta, You Feng, 1997, Paris

(q) "La littérature bouddhique des Tika et la Vimativinodani", Dharmaduta, You Feng, 1997, Paris

(r) Quelques Aspects de la Doctrine d’Anatta, (modified version of Ph.D thesis will appear 2010

(s) Critical Edition of the Vimativinodani Tika (post-doctoral research in preparation)

(t) "Buddhist Contribution to World Peace and Sustainable Development", Keynote speech to the United Nations Day of Vesak Celebration at UNESCAP Centre in Bangkok, 2004 ( will appear in Un Vesak Celebration proceeding Report)

(u) "The Vision of the Buddha for the Modern World", Keynote Address to the United Nations Day of Vesak Celebration at UNESCAP Centre in Bangkok, 2005 ( will appear in proceeding Report of UN Vesak Celebration)

(v) "Buddhism and Sufism", a panel discussion in Bedjaya, Algeria, 2007 ( will appear )

(w) "Buddhist Contributions to Human Development", Keynote address, to the 2550th Anniversary of the Buddha at Sarnath, India, 2006 (will appear)

External links[edit]