22 December 2020
SUPERSTITION V BELIEF
From time to time I receive emails with the subject heading ‘TISARANEE WRITES ANOTHER GOOD ONE ’. This time it directed me to Sri Lanka Guardian’s ‘Sri Lanka: The Void in the Nation’s Heart’ The article as per my interpretation is a dismissal of Superstition’. As highlighted yesterday, Mr Wigneswaran wrote recently to Mr Sumanthiran:
[I am not sure we should become the objective observers rather than subjective complainers. ]
I wonder as to how many readers of the report containing Mr Wigneswaran’s letter would have appreciated the difference between ‘subjectivity and objectivity’. Since Ms Tisaranee has not written about it – one is entitled to conclude that the lady also does not think that there is superstitious element in that communication from one educated Tamil to another educated Tamil or that the lady is not interested in Tamil interpretions.
Tamils who have invested in global measures, make up the third dimension – ‘Objective Complainants’. When we go through the USA – it is a subjective complaint. We are then limited to the levels of expressions by the USA. That is the way of the Subjective system. In a Court of Law – litigants are often limited to the levels of expressions that their lawyers would allow. Those levels are relative to the benefits derived by the lawyers as well as their ownership investment in the law and the judicial system itself. Lawyers bowing in Court to the judge is often subjective. I have written in my book that I said to Todd Golding (from the Office of the New South Wales Crown Solicitor) who asked me as to why I was bowing when there was no judge in the chair. I said ‘I am bowing to the god of Justice’.
The above, as per my discovery - confirms objectivity. My action did not depend on a particular judge’s credentials not being favoured by particular judge. The Judge was ‘Common’ and commonness has no particular form.
Had I bowed without belief and with the thought that mere bowing would bring me victory - that would have been ‘superstitious’. This is often based on hearsay and to my mind, is the parallel of copying another’s work and claiming it as one’s own.
Tisaranee presents her mind as follows:
[As President, Gotabaya Rajapaksa is the technocratic-philosopher king dispensing advice across the spectrum, from Central Bank economists to Wild Life officials, even as the economy tanks and the forests burn. Whether on these or any other subject, the Rajapaksas are deaf to expert opinions. For example, in July 2020, the Association of Medical Specialists, an independent body consisting of about 1300 medical specialists in the government sector, warned that community transmission of Covid-19 was either imminent or has already begun. The president of the association, Senior Consulted Surgeon, Dr. L. A. Ranasinghe, said, “Expanding PCR testing of at risk groups and random community testing would be crucial. Active contact tracing and, if necessary, even limited lock downs should also be implemented without any hesitation” (Daily Mirror – 16.7.2020).
Had that warning been heeded, the current wave of infection could have been avoided.]
To my mind, the above conclusion is also ‘superstitious’ and is proven false by the second wave that State of NSW in Australia is currently experiencing. If one does not know the causes, one needs to use the effects to protect oneself. At the moment we do not have ‘intelligence’ of the scientific reasons as to why one gets the infection. Here in Australia, we did follow the advice of the scientists. But there are those who think on their own and damage the belief based protection.
The doctors who treated me for a pain in my right leg about two years back, were different this time around when I developed pain in my left leg. I myself was less focused on this due to my mind being engaged with Covid19 protection for the family and others about whom I cared in common. These are automatic shifts that happen as per the level of our respective mind structures.
As per my belief, under these circumstances, we have to protect ourselves with the resources available to us and not depend on governments who themselves do not have the answers. The parallel of the statement ‘Had that warning been heeded, the current wave of infection could have been avoided’ in the case of the ethnic war was JRJ’s 1978 Constitution and Presidential rule copied from other countries. It made the problem worse by pushing ordinary folks who could ‘show’ power to become presidents in their own local areas.
Tisaranee continues as follows:
[When the reality of a new wave became irrefutable, the government caused a total disconnect between science and the pandemic. The resultant void was filled with miracle workers. First it was the faux-doctor Eliyantha White with his Kunadalini power and magical pots. Then came a carpenter-turned-godman with a concoction made to a recipe given to him by Goddess Kali……. The Kali concoction is a ruse to lull a desperate nation into a false sense of security, even as the pandemic rages almost unchecked.]
I often advise the folks in Thunaivi, Vaddukoddai – in Northern Sri Lanka – to pray to Kali when they are anxious – especially about causes over which they have no direct control. They take the advice to varying degrees and it is better than the knowledge that there is no way to protect themselves. Given their knowledge that I am Australian and that I have so far not been infected – they would feel more hopeful of protecting themselves through common prayers and other acts of faith.
I therefore do not dismiss such practices. The problem begins when they are enforced on others who have invested in global science of medicine.
The system of democracy is based on belief at the primary level which renders the believer with the powers of natural governance of the self by the self.
Using that as the yardstick, one needs to ask whether Tamil Political leaders like Mr Wigneswaran have invested in Democracy at global levels – for the Tamil complaints to be heard as a priority at UN level? To expect democratic outcomes at global levels – one ought to be practicing democracy at local level. As per the principles of democracy belief in Judiciary needs to be shown as a separate form to belief in Politics. Likewise, belief in Science based Global Medicine and belief in local medicine. There would be abuses in both. But one who is superstitious over Global knowledge is likely to throw the baby out with the bathwater.