An abbot in Singapore has been accused of engaging the services of a male prostitute using temple funds.
The scandal was announced on Facebook on Nov. 14 by a Facebook profile named 龙山寺 (Leong San See Temple).
According to Lianhe Zaobao, this is not Leong San See Temple's official Facebook profile.
Footage of abbot caressing male prostitute, engaging in oral sex
According to the whistleblower, an anonymous person sent incriminating videos and photos depicting the abbot in question, Master Chuan Wen (传文法师) allegedly cavorting with a male prostitute on temple grounds.
"He used money to engage a male prostitute and had sexual relations with him. There is footage of oral sex, caressing...It is unbearable to watch," wrote the whistleblower, who added that the abbot's actions are a disgrace to Buddhism.
The money that was used to hire a male prostitute came from devotees' sweat and blood, the whistleblower added.
"It is to bless and provide for the temple monks. The abbot shouldn't have used temple devotees' monetary donations this way."
"Please don't blame me (for releasing this scandal) because it is against my conscience to deceive everyone," the whistleblower added.
Later, the whistleblower also alleged that this was not the first time Master Chuan Wen engaged the services of a male prostitute.
"It is a years (sic)-long addiction. I let him off the hook time and time again on account of the old monks of the temple, but he is unrepentant."
The whistleblower also posted another update, saying that he/she would upload the videos on Google Drive, and urged others to call the Singapore Buddhist Federation to verify the allegations.
Lianhe Zaobao added that it received information (including six clips) from a male devotee of Leong San See Temple, who requested to lodge a complaint against the temple abbot.
Police reports made against Facebook profile and abbot
Most buddhist monks are required to take a vow of celibacy and live on monetary donations by devotees for their daily upkeep.
It is unclear if Master Chuan Wen has his own personal funds.
It is also unclear how the whistleblower managed to get the footage.
According to Lianhe Zaobao, the temple made a police report against the whistleblower's Facebook page, while the informant also made a report against the abbot.
The paper also confirmed with the police that a report was lodged by an informant. However, after discussing with the Attorney-General Chambers, the police will not be proceeding with the case, reported Lianhe Zaobao.
Lianhe Zaobao also tried to contact the chairman of the Singapore Buddhist Federation multiple times but could not reach him.
When Mothership called the Singapore Buddhist Federation, a lady said that their person-in-charge was not around.
The whistleblower's actions did not sit well with everyone. Some jumped to the defence of the abbot, and questioned the motives of the whistle blower.
One person said:
"You keep pasting the incriminating photos in the comment section. It seem like you are seeking revenge instead of solving the problem."
Another person who claimed to be a devotee of Leong San See Temple accused the whistle blower of trying to hurt the abbot.
"You shouldn't have said these. Give us your name and contact details. You are liable, under the law, for what you said. People mustn't believe your words. As a Buddhist, please have mercy at heart. If you try to hurt our abbot and temple again, we will take legal action against you!"
Another advised against blowing up the scandal:
"Brother, as Buddhist devotee, it is our duty to protect Buddhism.....there are many who might wish to enter Buddhism, but seeing this persistent hatred, they might not want to....let go of your feelings towards the temple and the abbot."
Others attacked the abbot for breaking his vows, and those who came to his defence:
"You broke your vow. Please get lost so we can clean up Buddhism."
"What (the whistleblower) did was right. We rather offend those who are blindly obsessed rather than tarnish Buddhism."
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