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London Atheist Activist Group (informal community) Message Board 1. MAIN FORUM - (non-Islam) › Tourists sentenced to jail for kissing a Buddha statue

Tourists sentenced to jail for kissing a Buddha statue

user 3399980
London, GB
Post #: 88
This really surprised me, because I thought that Buddhism was a more tolerant religion.

This is completely ridiculous. At least their sentence was suspended. Until what, though?


Three French tourists convicted in Sri Lanka for desecrating a temple by photographing themselves kissing and posing with a Buddha statue have been sentenced by magistrates to six months in jail, suspended for five years.

­One of the photographs featured a woman pretending to kiss the statue on the lips, and a man imitating the pose of the Buddha, the police reported.

The images provoked a wave of condemnation as the tourists were harshly criticized for their "uncivilized behavior".

"They had not only broken Sri Lankan law, but they have also violated universally accepted norms of respecting the religious symbols of others," police spokesman Ajith Rohana told Agence France Press. "We condemn this and urge tourists not to make religious offence."

"If we had not arrested them and prosecuted them, they would have taken the pictures abroad, published them and gloated," the police spokesman added.

The magistrate fined the group 1,500 rupees ($11) each, ordered the destruction of the photos, but handed back the tourists their camera and passports.

Officers got to know about the incident after the travelers tried to get their holiday pictures printed at a photo shop. The owner of the shop immediately called the police.

In 2010, Sri Lanka prevented American rapper Akon from visiting the country over his music video which featured nearly naked women dancing in front of a Buddha statue.

Sri Lanka's Supreme Court has also ordered police and customs to seize CDs of Buddha Bar chill-out music.

Original article

John P
London, GB
Post #: 1,211
Did you know that you are not even supposed to take a picture of yourself with a statue of Buddha behind you, because it is considered "disrespectful" to stand with your back to the Buddha? confused
Alex D
London, GB
Post #: 50
I'd better not post the pic of me tickling his nuts then! (Thankfully digital photography spared me the risk of getting them developed at chemist of unknown religiosity.)
abdul h
user 8366561
London, GB
Post #: 457
This really surprised me, because I thought that Buddhism was a more tolerant religion.

Buddhism may be more tolerant than other religions but its followers can be as crazy as any religious lunatic.

I live near the London Buddhist centre and they seem very friendly happy-go-lucky people. It’s easy to forget that it is a religion with some very odd ideas.

As for these French tourists, it’s a shame they didn’t get a harsher sentence. It would have gotten more publicity. Hopefully it will deter people from going to these countries.
Barry R.
user 10723166
London, GB
Post #: 208
People who kiss inanimate objects should go to jail as a matter of course.
A former member
Post #: 21
Speaking as a Buddhist, though a pretty free-thinking & not dogged-by-dogma one(*) - and one who helped build the FWBO centre in Bethnal Green several decades ago - in essence Buddhism cares little about statues and kissing, however in every culture that has embraced Buddhism there is a "gravitational pull" that turns it into an established church full of petty rules about what you should wear, how you should sit, what you should eat, what's "right" and "wrong", and you have to respect the priests and monks - much like Christianity, Islam, Judaism, etc. etc. and the rules are different in every country. This is more about human nature wanting a rigid set of rules to make people right and wrong rather than a religious issue. At least they didn't get stoned...

(* actually I basically make up my own version of Buddhism, truth be told)
Purley, GB
Post #: 777
(* actually I basically make up my own version of Buddhism, truth be told)

I think all religious people do that for their relgion, it's the only way they can get through all the things they disagree with, in the religious texts that they hold so dear to themselves.
London, GB
Post #: 232
(* actually I basically make up my own version of Buddhism, truth be told)

Is it possible everyone is doing that & there may not be any real Christian, Muslim etc in the world.
Richard F
user 2543752
London, GB
Post #: 797
What is "real Christianity"? ;)
Purley, GB
Post #: 779
What is "real Christianity"? ;)

A good question. I often hear christians say "Oh, they aren't a real christian". Which brings me to...

This is one of my favourites:
No true Scotsman fallacy

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