A.T. Ariyaratne

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Dr. A.T. Ariyaratne, Founder, Sarvodaya Shramadana Movement of Sri Lanka.

"In the spirit of Martin Luther King, he has led peace marches and meditations with millions of poor people. In the mold of Mahatma Gandhi, he has quieted angry masses through his personal example. Like Jimmy Carter, he has successfully mediated intense conflicts and helped build hundreds of homes. Like the Dalai Lama and the world’s greatest preachers, he has an impressive ability to rally ordinary citizens to see the spiritual wisdom of looking beyond their own salvation to help ensure the salvation of others.

"But he is definitely his own man...and is almost completely unknown to ordinary Americans. He is Dr. A.T. Ariyaratne, founder of the Sarvodaya Shramadana movement of Sri Lanka.

"Why has Sarvodaya earned international recognition? Dr. Ariyaratne and the movement he founded have survived years of government harassment and intimidation, assassination threats and malevolent neglect by politicians. Yet Sarvodaya continues to embody the meaning of its name: “the sharing of labor, thought and energy for the awakening of all.”

"It is an underestimation to think of him, as journalists have, as Sri Lanka's "little Gandhi," even though he won the Gandhi Peace Prize in 1996, the Niwano Peace Prize, the King Beaudoin Award and many other international honors for his work in peace making and village development. True, Ariyaratne is "like" many other leaders of popular movements. But his unique, nationwide brand of "development from the bottom up" has an enviable track record of success that endures." [1]


Resources and articles

Related Sourcewatch articles


  1. A.T. Ariyaratne, Sarvodaya USA, accessed July 29, 2008.
  2. SAIV Council, Spiritual Alliance to Stop Intimate Violence, accessed November 19, 2011.
  3. Commissioners, Earth Charter, accessed February 17, 2009.
  4. 2004 Participants, Synthesis Dialogues, accessed November 1, 2011.
  5. Institute of Noetic Sciences Distinguished Advisors, organizational web page, accessed July 14, 2013.