Nilambe Buddhist Meditation Centre

Nilambe Buddhist Meditation Centre (Sinhala: නිල්ලඹ බෞද්ධ භාවනා මධ්‍යස්ථානය) is situated near Galaha in Kandy District, Sri Lanka. It offers regular meditation courses that need to be booked in advance (Dhammika, 2008).

A group of elders such as Ratnayaka, Godwin Samararatana, Bhante S. Dhammika, Dr Parakrama Fernando, Prof. Lily De Silva, Pat Jayatilleke and Prof. Witanachchi who gathered twice a week at the Engineer’s Bungalow at Peradeniya University for meditation sittings decided to build a place for meditation after they were asked by the university authorities to vacate the Engineer’s Bungalow in 1977. As a result, the present meditation centre was constructed in Nilambe in the late 1970s on a plot of land donated by a Kandyan businessman named P. B. Alahakoon and his wife.

In the beginning, the meditation centre consisted of a single hall with an attached kitchen and immediately after it was opened, Jack Kornfield and Joseph Goldstein, who happened to be visiting Sri Lanka, were invited to conduct the inaugural meditation course which some 60 local and foreign meditators attended. As the first meditation course was successful, it was decided to hold regular courses, but there was no permanent teacher for that. However, the monk Bhante Dhammika started conducting some courses and gradually word spread that the centre at Nilambe was a pleasant place to meditate.

In 1979 Godwin Samaratatna retired from his job and came to Nilambe as a manager. During the next two decades, the meditation centre became popular among Westerners because of the efforts of Samararatna (Dhammika, 2008).

1) Dhammika, B. S., 2008. Sacred Island; A Buddhist pilgrim’s guide to Sri Lanka. Buddhist Publication Society. ISBN: 978-955-24-0271-5. pp.28-29.

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This page was last updated on 31 May 2023
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