About monastic property

About monastic property

Of property in this country, people barely know that the property that belongs to Buddhism is in great amount and nobody knows the exact value of it because the list and value of monastic property have never been revealed. However, by estimation, it should not be less than 20 trillions Baht which is greater than the combined value of 57 state enterprises. Nevertheless, this immense amount of value does not provide benefits to Buddhism, monasteries or monastic communities as much as it should due to murky administration that has been corrupt, by which Buddhist property has been abused and made personal property for so long.

There are a lot of problems relating to property of monasteries or monks. In some cases, when a monk passes away and leaves a lot of property behind, his relatives claim that it is their inheritance. In some cases, a famous monk whose property includes tremendous amount of money, luxurious items, European vehicles, houses, lands and administration as if it is a kingdom of his own benefits. In cases of different temples, e.g. Wat Sothonwararam, Wat Sraket Rajavaravihara that have problems with administration of monastic property, benefits of the temples are embezzled and placed in the trust of some monks and some of their people.

Nowadays, temples are juristic people according to the ecclesiastical laws, which specify that the abbot is the representative of a temple in administering the temple’s property. His power includes the ability to administer juristic acts, i.e. making a payment, deposit or withdraw money to or from the account, or transfer money to anybody that is still within the limit of his power. The appointment of a committee to administer a temple would include members that have good relation with the abbot. Many times, the committee members are relatives, servants, trusted confidants, which means the absolute power still belongs to the abbot.

Wat Phra Dhammakaya is just a fake target.

The real target is temples nationwide whose combined property is worth more than 20 trillions Baht.

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