Worshipper Shot & Killed Inside Buddhist Temple

July 21, 2020

HIGH POINT, North Carolina—High Point police are currently searching for the person responsible for shooting and killing a man as he sat inside a Buddhist temple meditating.

Police were called to the Chua An Lac Temple on Scientific Street around 8 pm, according to CBS2 WFMY.

The bullet was fired randomly into the building and hit 50-year-old Tam Dinh Tran in the chest while he was meditating. Several people were also inside the building at the time. Initially, the occupants in the building weren’t aware anyone had been shot.

The Buddhist temple may have been racially or religiously targeted.

Variation of the Buddhist swastika. Image via Hindu American

A monk walked into a room to check on things and found Tran kneeling at the altar in a praying position, according to police. Blood was dripping out of his nose, the monk immediately called 911. Tran was pronounced dead at the scene.

Upon investigation, two bullet holes were found. One made it through the wall and killed Tran. Another one was lodged in the building’s stud. The projectiles were fired from outside the building.

High Point police say Tran was the unintended target of the shooting but the shooting itself was not random. Lt. Matt Truitt of the High Point Police Department says this is the 40th shooting in the city since the start of June.

There have been a growing number of cases of ignorance toward Buddhism around the world. The religion itself is older than Christianity by a couple hundred years and numerous historians have stated the “Golden Rule” of Christianity originated from Buddhism by merchants and traders passing through China into India and passing through the Middle East and into the greater-Roman Empire.

Buddhist Statue. Image via Hindu American

The swastika is the symbol of Buddhism. In Sanskrit, the word “swastika” roughly translates to “good existence.” The symbol itself originated from Hinduism, which is older than Judaism by about 500 years, making Hinduism the oldest religion in the world. Both Hinduism and Buddhism originated from India.

Ancient swastika from India. Image via Hindu American

The swastika sadly gained infamy after an Austrian named Adolf Hitler used a variation of the swastika as a symbol of hate. Now, many Westerners believe the swastika should never be used, regardless of the symbol predating Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. However, such demands are being pushed back by cultures and countries in Asia older than all current Western countries who have used the symbol since the beginning of their existence.

Basically, an overall Asian view toward Western demands about the swastika, “You vilified our religious symbol and now you call us ‘racist’ for using a symbol older than your entire racial existence. Go screw yourself.”

Feature Image via CBS2 WFMY

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