The Aluvihare Temple near Matale is said to have been the location of the 4th Theravada Buddhist Council, which for the first time layed down the Pali Canon of the Holy Scriptures in written form to preserve it for future generations. A museum for palm leaf writings is attached to the ancient temple. The caves have typical Kandyan paintings. A newly decorated cave has gaudy illustrations of hell punishments like a chamber of horrors. Another cave is believed to have been the abode of Buddhaghosa, Church Father of Theravada Buddhism, who lived in the 5th century AD. He is the most famous commentator of the Tipitaka, the Buddhist Holy Scriptures. A stairway along his cave lead to the top of a rock, which is crowned by a small stupa. This is an excellent vantage point overlooking the rocks of the Aluvihare Temple and the surroundings of Matale. The name of the temple, which is situated close to the Kandy-Dambulla-Jaffna road A9, is also spelt Aluviharaya or Aluvihara.
Nuwan Chinthaka Gajanayaka