World Tipiṭaka Presentation Ceremony Univ of Melbourne 2009
Image by dhammasociety.org
In front of the Royal Gift of Tipitaka presented to the University of Melbourne over a hundred years ago, the Chancellor of the University of Melbourne welcomes the Delegation from Thailand during the Roman-script World Tipitaka Presentation to the University 2009.
SPEECH BY CHANCELLOR OF THE UNIVERSITY OF MEBLOUNRE
Your Excellency Lady Khunying, Patron of the Dhamma Society, Chief of Delegation, Your Excellency Miss Suchitra, Former Thai Ambassador to Australia, Major Suradhaj, Chancellor of the Dhamma Society and President of the World Tipitaka, patrons and guests of the Dhamma Society: Dr Simon Wallace, Honorary Counsel General for Thailand in Victoria, other distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen.
On behalf of the University I extend to a very warm welcome to the delegation of the Dhamma Society and other representatives who made a long journey from Thailand to present such precious gifts.
I begin in our customary way by acknowledging the Wurundjeri people of the Kulin Nations who are the traditional owners of land on which this event will take place.
I would like to express my deep gratitude for choosing the University of Melbourne as the first recipient in Australia of the World Tipitaka in Roman Script.
These 40 volumes of World Tipitaka were published by Dhamma Society in 2005 following 6 years of dedicated work to compare various versions of the Pali Tipitaka to ensure an accurate Romanisation.
The 2009 edition is a special publication edition for our University with many innovative features. It will be supported by an online Tipitaka Quotation WebService and “Tipitaka Studies Reference". These innovations will greatly enhance the usage of the Tipitaka by our students, researchers and the broader community.
This royal gift of the World Tipitaka will produce a range of benefits to the University, its students and researchers, and the community generally.
First, World Tipitaka, with its modern technology, will be used to share ancient teachings in the spirit of peace. We are delighted to facilitate this, in particular given that the University of Melbourne is a public spirited institution.
Secondly, I am confident that this gift will greatly encourage the local Thai and Buddhist communities in Melbourne to secure a deeper understanding of their culture, and promote academic research in that area at the University and beyond. More particularly, the University will make use of your World Tipitaka as a window to understand and study Southern Buddhist tradition.
Next, the World Tipitaka Edition is also a reminder of the University of Melbourne’s relationship with Thailand in particular, and with the Asian region in general.
Today’s presentation is also a wonderful opportunity to enhance friendship and cultural interchange between Australia and Thailand.
And this University has a very special connection with Thailand.
Long ago, in 1893, the King of Thailand generously donated to the University a copy of the first set of the Pali Tipitaka in Siam script in 39 volumes.
And in 1962, the then King of Thailand, visited the University of Melbourne, and was awarded an honorary Doctorate of Laws.
And, of course, it has and has had many students from Thailand that have made a great contribution to Thai Society and their country.
The University, and the Library in particular, very much appreciates and is grateful for the honour that you have bestowed on us as the first institution in Australia to receive and retain in its care the 40 volumes of World Tipitaka in Roman script.
I hope that you have a memorable and comfortable stay in Australia and have safe trip back to Thailand.
As a small token of our gratitude may I present a small memento of this occasion to Your Excellency and Mr Kent will do likewise to the other members in the delegation.
The Hon Alex Chernov AO QC
จดหมายเหตุดิจิทัลจากกองทุนสนทนาธัมม์นำสุข ท่านผู้หญิงมณีรัตน์ บุนนาค ในพระสังฆราชูปถัมภ์ฯ ผู้ดำเนินโครงการพระไตรปิฎกสากลอักษรโรมัน พ.ศ. 2542-ปัจจุบัน
Digital Archives from the M.L. Maniratana Bunnag Dhamma Society’s World Tipiṭaka Project in Roman Script, 1999-2009.