Buddhist Exchange Network hosted at the TBCM Website

TBCM with logo

Dear Friends in the Dhamma,

As part of our Theravada Buddhist Council of Malaysia’s efforts to drive economies of scale and scope in the area of free publications and CDs, at the recent AGM we had proposed to act on 11 items in the short term for the benefit of the Theravada community in Malaysia. One of the proposals was the set up of a Buddhist Exchange Network in the mid-term, hosted at the TBCM Website. This Exchange program will be with the support of all TBCM members who could update every 2 months their available free materials which other TBCM members could tap on, if needed. The other members could write to the Free Publications Coordinator of the Society offering these free publications for the number of copies they want to be made available at their center. The whole process is simply a stroke on demand, if there is a need there is a request. If there is no need from other Societies for that publication, then there is no requests made.

To support this Buddhist Exchange Network, we just need your kind assistance to provide us the details of your Free Publications Coordinator (Name and email) and also the list of free publications and CDs you would like to place on offer for any Societies who would like to have them for free distribution at their respective centers. We would like to request your Free Publications Coordinator to update the lists once every two months and sent to our Webmaster, Bro Terence at opulence.consultancy@gmail.com.

We have prepared a simple FAQ below to answer any questions you may have on this program. We look forward to your kind support for this program that will of highly meritorious, intensively suffusing oneself with the joy of giving and creates synergy in the area of free publications.

Yours in the Dhamma,

Ananda Fong,
Hon Secretary,
Theravada Buddhist Council of Malaysia

lotus_flower_blooming vesak praise

Why is this an economic of scale exercise?
By any Society printing that publication, it avoids duplicate publications at higher cost, published at low volumes.

Why is it an economic of scope?
The TBCM consist of a wide range of Societies and thus their free publications are varied. There is thus the opportunity to tap from various societies books needed, without having to procure or print them by oneself at additional costs. Money thus saved could be used to print more free books

Why not just do what we are doing today at our respective Societies free publications? We are doing well, are we not?
Yes, we are saying please continue your respective free publications. But we are appealing to you to also publicise via this Buddhist Exchange Network to communicate the availability of your publicatons to other societies and others could request for it. This therefore enables the book to reach a “need” market instead of a “want” or “flooded” market. By sharing, you are also enabling other Societies too to share what they have, and you too could save on your own cost of printing to print other titles. The net result being more books will be printed and there is better distribution network for the free books, thus a higher ROM (Return on Merits) for the donor.

I feel we are doing well in free publication. What is it that you perceive to be some of the problems with our Buddhist socieites current free publications program?

  1. some societies just post out book to other societies, needed or otherwise and thus the unneeded are left lying around gathering dust.
  2. some societies have a knack of collecting books from everywhere and leaving them to gather dust at their center, not discounting weather related damage
  3. some societies print excessive books with no means to distribute and these gather dust at their centers
  4. books for niche groups are neglected. Eg children, life cycle event coping and handling individuals(cancer, diabetes, hyperthesion, loss of loved one, depression), and also lack of books for Mandarin using Theravadins, Hokkien and Cantonese dialect Theravadins, and also immigrant Buddhists such as Thais, Burmeses, Sri Lankan, Nepalese, Indians, Cambodians, Vietnamese, Bangladeshis, etc.

Many individuals go to Buddhist temples and societies. Surely there is not enough books to cater to this huge group.How can there be wastage?
Unfortunately that is true, but the poor distribution method and network of our Buddhist societies and temples is the problem:

  1. we do not place stands or shelves in areas of high traffic flow of people to clear the books- it is always relegated to some unseen corner or poorly lighted corner
  2. books are not topped up periodically when exhausted
  3. poor networking, communication and exchange of books between Theravada groups
  4. poor networking between non-Thai Theravada groups with the Thai temples and centers, who number about 100-150 centers in Malaysia but do not have free distribution books

Are there any other opportunities we are missing out in free publications?
Yes, we are not capitalizing on the annual visits of millions of domestic and foreign tourists to the major Buddhist temples like Thean Hou temple in KL, Kek Lok Si and the Sleeping Buddha temple in Penang, etc by placing free publications there. There would be an immense uptake.

Why should we update every 2 months?
New titles could be printed which could be added to the list while some of the existing titles could be exhausted. By updating every 2 months, we manage expectations proactively.

Who will bear the cost of postage?
The Society that is offering the free publications, will post the parcel of books to the requesting Society, by surface mail registered and bear the cost of postage.

How does the update look like?
The update is simple as follows:

Buddhist Maha Vihara, Brickfields, Kuala Lumpur
Cordinator: Bro Sumananda Premseri
Email: premaseri@hotmail.com

Free Publications/CDs available

English
Return to Tranquility by Ven Dr Punnaji
Great Book of Protection
Question Time with Ven Dr K Sri Dhammananda Part 2
Buddhism in Africa by Ven I. Pannasekara
Good Questions, Good Answers by Ven S. Dhammika

Mandarin
Life of the Buddha Part 1&2 by Ven Siridhamma
How to choose a religion by Ven Dr K Sri Dhammananda
Planting the Seeds of Dhamma by Ven Buddharakkhita

Bahasa Malaysia
Siapakah Buddha? by Ven P. Pemaratana
Kenapa Memilih Agama Buddha? by Ven Dr K Sri Dhammananda
Saya Seorang Buddhis by Mr Premaseri
Permata Dhamma by Ven S. Dhammika
Panduan Kebahagiaan by Ven Anoma Mahinda

Tamil
Good Questions, Good Answers by Ven S. Dhammika
Dhammapada
The Buddhist Child, Buddhism for Primary by Ven Pemaloka & Ven Khemarama

We also have Dhamma books in the following languages:
Asian: Sinhalese, Burmese, Thai, Vietnamese, Khemer, Hindi, Kannada, Telegu, Oriya, Bengali, Japanese, Nepalese
European: French, Dutch, Swedish, Spanish
African languages: Kishwahili, Chichewa, Luganda
South American: Brazilian Portugese

CDs
MP3- Karma and Rebirth by Ven Dr K Sri Dhammananda Part 1
MP3- Karma and Rebirth Part 2 by Ven Dr K Sri Dhammananda Part 2
MP3- Dhamma Talks in Malaysia by Ven Bhikkhuni Dr Kusuma
MP3- Dhamma Talks in Malaysia by Ven Dr Sangharatana
MP3- Meditation Retreat Talks by Ven Bhikkhuni Bodhicitta
Sinhalese MP3- by Ven Dr K Sri Dhammananda, Ven Punnaji, Ven Bodhicitta, et al

-posted by Terence Seow