Wat Dhammakāya

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The fastest-growing Buddhist organization in Thailand.enjoying the support of the royal family, the military, and political leaders. Officially registered in 1978 the Dhammakāya movement was begun in the 1970s by two monks, Phra Dhammajayo and Phra Dattijīvo. Both held advanced degrees in business administration and marketing and sought to work for the renewal of Buddhism in Thailand and throughout the world. The movement founded a 1,000 acre centre at Pattum Thani, near Bangkok and there are plans to extend the site further to cater for the thousands of supporters who visit at weekends and for festivals. The movement has become the dominant voice in the Buddhist associations of most Thai universities, and also has a network of Dharma practice centres throughout the country. Critics of Wat Dhammakāya claim its recruitment and promotional campaigns are too evangelical and commercial, and that it is overly influenced by the ruling élite.

Subjects: Buddhism.

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