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Home > Heritage > Kudumbigala Monastery

Kudumbigala Monastery

The cylindrical stupa

Kudumbigala Monastery lies eleven miles from Panama and seventeen miles away from the Kumana Village.

Kudumbigala monastic complex was built in 246 BC, during the time of King Devanampiyatissa. It was first established as a refuge for the Buddhist monks who wanted to get away from the busy Cities. Archaeologists had recovered over 200 rock caves belonging to this forgotten monastery.

The inscriptions in Brahmi script and other evidence in the recently discovered cave, Maha Sudharshana Lena, shows that Kudumbigala was established as an Aranya Senansanaya in the pre-Christian era. A stone inscription has it that the Maha Sudharshana Lena was built and gifted to the Arahats by the Giant Warrior Nandimitra, one of King Dutugemunu’s "Dasa Maha Yodayas", the ten giant warriors.

Only Cylindrical Dagaba to survive in
Sri Lanka today :

In 1994, terrorists belonging to the LTTE hacked to death 17 innocent civilians in Panama. Kudumbigala had to be abandoned immediately as the Government failed to protect the place. Ethnic cleansing, under the cover of the most effective propaganda machine in the world today, has swallowed one third of the Sri Lankan land and 74% of the Sinhalese Buddhists do not even seem to know that. 5% of the Christian Sinhalese do not even seem to care.

LTTE Terrorists last warning to
Buddhist Monks.

Today, there is no human habitation around this historic Aranya. Kudumbigala stands, towering in silent splendour, a solitary landmark and witness to the untold stories that get written into landscapes, buried, unearthed and erased yet once again. That is the sad tale of the Sinhalese civilization, which unfortunately do not deserve that fate.

The importance of the Kudumbigala monastery cannot be expressed in words. The Only Cylindrical Dagaba to survive in Sri Lanka today, is in this monastery.

LTTE terrorists have thrown tar on the head of the Buddha statue. That was the last warning given to the monks vacate the place.


Story of the Maithree Upasaka : ( Hero of Kudumbigala )

Upasaka Maithree's
skelton on display before
LTTE destroyed it

He was a Catholic from Negombo. While working in the Ceylon Railway he discovered the hidden history of the Sinhalese, which changed his life forever. In 1954, he came to Kudumbigala Monastery and cleaned up the place. There he lived, meditated and safeguarded the place for the future generations of Sri Lankans until he died on the 10 th September, 1971. Today, he is regarded as the hero who protected this historic place, all alone, while most of the country’s politicians and officials were sleeping with the enemy.

Until 1994, the remains of the Maithree Upasaka were displayed in a rock cave as he wished.

Then the LTTE terrorists smashed the glass display and threw his remains into the jungle.

We thank the researcher who recovered them from the jungle again.

Upasaka Maithrees remains
recovered form jungle

Humans advanced from the barbarian era to a civilized era. While communities like the Sinhalese Buddhists searched for the truth, fairness, and justice for all, many others, led by those who were after political, business objectives, searched for their own ethnic, religious and social interests. They covered their selfishness, fraud and hypocrisy with hair-splitting arguments, lies, and propaganda.

Source :


Further Reading

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Updated February 3, 2007
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