Source: Sunday Herald
On March 7, 2004 the Sunday Herald reported, "Experts believe the number of Buddhists in the country has risen past the 10,000 mark and is growing. The Glasgow Buddhist Centre has had to set up waiting lists for its meditation classes, informal Buddhist meditation and teaching groups have sprung up across the land and the Kagyu Samye Ling Monastery, in Dumfries, is expanding to accommodate the increase in visitor numbers. The Dalai Lama’s visit in May is expected to encourage thousands more to take up one of the few booming faiths in the western world. The 2001 Census recorded 6800 Buddhists in Scotland but, according to Dr Perry Schmidt-Leukel, an expert in Buddhism at Glasgow University, the true number is greater. 'The Census was the first real statistic about the number of Buddhists in Scotland, but some wilder estimates put the number in the UK at around 500,000 people,' he said. He believes that celebrity interest in Buddhism has prompted some people to join. 'It is fashionable to flirt with the religion. It provides insights into the very questions of human existence and Buddhism gets a very good press through the media.'"