Bhubaneswar: The Chief Monk of the Dhauli Peace Pagoda, Kazuo Yoda passed away at the Kobe Temple in Japan on Thursday morning following a brief illness.
He was 65. Yoda was the resident monk of the Dhauli Peace Pagoda for more than three decades.
Yoda had come to Bhubaneswar along with his Guru Fuji in 1971 when he was only 15-years-old. He has been living at the Dhauli Peace Pagoda since then and was a very popular and loved person. He was a reformist monk who was highly respected for being able to combine and balance Buddhist learning with meditation practices.
Dr Bimalendu Mohanty, president of the Mahabodhi Society of India recollected with fond memories the charismatic Yoda.
“Yoda was one of the great Buddhist masters of meditation who lived a hermit-like life. He was determined to observe Buddhism in its pure State,” said Mohanty.
Historian Anil Dhir, a friend of Yoda, recalled his youthful zeal and innocence.
“He led a reclusive life at the Buddha Temple at the base of the Dhauli Hills, with his dogs for company. He was a popular person in the nearby areas. He had also set up a school. He will be greatly missed by his students and all those who are grateful for his teachings and his friendship,” said Dhir.
A memorial prayer meet was held at the Maha Bodhi Society of India’s Bhubaneswar Centre on Friday evening. It was attended by Dr Bimalendu Mohanty, Dr Sourendra Mohapatro, Dr Arya Jnanendra and Anil Dhir among others.