Sulak Sivaraska is a leading exponent of engaged Buddhism and Thailand’s prominent social critic and activist. Sulak’s work in the area’s of democracy, human rights and government accountability has inspired many all over the world to engage with such concerns.
By creating a string of social welfare and development organizations rooted in different aspects of Thai society, Sulak started the indigenous NGO movement in Thailand and successfully mobilized its civil society. He received the Right Livelihood Award in 1995 and the Gandhi Millennium Award in 2001.
Running through all the organizations inspired by “Ajarn Sulak” are two principal themes: a rejection of Western consumerist models on development in favour of an approach to development founded in and growing out of Thai (or, more generally, indigenous) culture; and an emphasis on the spiritual and religious dimensions of human life, rooted in his own deep Buddhist sensibility, and the need for spirituality and religion to become ‘socially engaged’.
Of the many books he has written Seeds of Peace and Global Healing are the most widely known.