21 November 2016
The Rights of Children & Responsibilities of Leaders
I believe that the right of every child is the heritage developed by her/his parents and ancestors. Every child has a mother and a father. The mother develops the child internally and that to me is development of common faith/belief. Any external development needs to be on this foundation. As per the Daily Mirror report ‘What we want for every child’ about UNs role in this:
[The convention, which is the most widely ratified international human rights treaty, sets out a number of children’s rights including the right to life, to health, to education and to play, the right to family life, to be protected from violence, not to be discriminated against and to have their views heard.]
A right is a projection of need. Where there is a right there is an Equal & Opposite need. Any ‘right’ without a need is an expression of desire. It is easy to list the external forms based on the seen. The above article depicts, Poverty, War & Diseases as the challenges faced by a child. When remedies are ‘given’ on false diagnosis – the child suffers another disease and/or another child suffers more, relative the beneficiary. The basic right of every child is her/his heritage – from parents and the home community. If the parents survived threats such as poverty, diseases and war – then the child inherits those surviving forces. If the child’s environment is changed by outsiders – the child loses connection with the heritage and that is a crime.
Such discrepancies are prevented when remedies are based on belief and / or Common Principles. In the case of majority who are natives to a particular land – belief is the fundamental basis. The intellectual basis needs to be merit based and needs to be applied on Equal Footing and be transparent – so transparent that the child could question why s/he did not get what the other got? Democracy is largely about the latter. But how does a child access those facilities?
Yesterday I had firsthand experience of the local belief of the natives of this village of Thunaivi – most of whom are driven by their habits rather than intellectual discrimination. Most of the parents did not go beyond primary school. Their minds are the first ones taken over by those desiring war. War, based on need is a right. Relative to more remote areas – child-recruitment from this area which is considered a high risk zone, is virtually unknown. It may be due to investment in self-governance which led to the Vaddukoddai Resolution. So long as the line of inheritance is maintained – the children of this area would enjoy good quality of life.
On Friday, I was chief guest at the opening of a tailoring business. I then noticed a local guy who had borrowed money from us for self-employment taking on his motorbike, his two sons to school. I was reminded of how I took my three children of about that age – by bus, to drop off my son at D.S. Senanayake primary school and then walked with my two daughters to the other end of the road to St Bridget’s Convent and then caught the bus to work. After school – our son caught the bus back and the girls were picked up by my former boss Mr. Huzam Cader whose kids were also studying at St. Bridget’s Convent. Relatively speaking these parents and children have more comforts that my children and I had at the parallel stages. We had to maintain a higher living standard due to my heritage. By experiencing those difficulties without compromising on the standards, I developed higher heritage through my own efforts – relative to my parallels/equals at that time. If I did not carry that true heritage within me – I would be easily swayed by the apparent relativity through which I am currently seen as being more comfortably off than those parents and my children enjoying more than their children. Every child has the right to enjoy as per her/his heritage. No child has the right to someone else’s heritage. That to me, is what Sovereignty is all about.
From the point of locals – yesterday a 26 year old guy came to our temple where Priest Radha Aiyar and I were chatting. The young guy came and stood in front of Radha Aiyar and asked ‘who am I?’. At first Radha Aiyar said that he did not recognize the young guy. But the guy said ‘look into my eyes and say who I am’. Then Radha Aiyar said ‘you are Vairavar’. The young guy fell at Radha Aiyar’s feet and said ‘thank you god!’. He then stated that Vairavar had come to protect the innocent guy within. The conversation went on along that line and eventually the young guy went to pray in front of the altar. His relatives expressed their anxiety to Radha Aiyar who then recommended someone who could break the spell. After they left – Radha Aiyar explained to me that some magician had induced this spirit in this guy and explained that unless the person providing the remedy was strong – that person could get infected. Then Radha Aiyar pointed to two little pools of dark blood – at the spot where the young guy was standing. Radha Aiyar asked me to step away from it and I followed those instructions. When I thought about it – on my own – it was mental disorder due to individuals going into ‘hiding’ when they are faced by challenges. The stronger mind in that discipline can cure them. The locals give these disorders various names of spirits. The parallel that comes to mind is the mentally ill label allocated to me by the Australian Justice system going into hiding in the Mental Health system. But those in that system will not see any wrong in that system – the same way Buddhist politicians would not see any wrong in ‘Buddhism foremost’ provision in the Sri Lankan Constitution. They mark themselves right and live in their own world. If the 26 year old was suffering due to voodoo magic then the same label applies to the Sri Lankan politicians and the Australian Judicial system.
When our mind is weak, it can be taken-over by stronger minds. When those stronger minds are of common belief – it’s heritage based following. When the stronger mind is that of an outsider – it is evil even when it happens within the official system and even when it results in handouts – of money and religious status.
The mind rooted in one’s heritage – is orderly. On Saturday night when young ones refused to leave the temple at 8 p.m. I announced that I was going to call the Police. They left. But came again yesterday to ‘chat’ and make loud noises as if they were ‘free’. Calling the Police would have been an external measure and could lead to unjust excessive punishment. Yesterday I showed the young guys one of whom is a relative of the 26 year old under the influence of the escape route – the blood spots and said that they were at risk of infection. Soon they vanished! As Radha Aiyar said in the case of the 26 year old – you have to go along with them and ask them to discard the evil spirit. I just applied it in the case of the young ones who hide into their own self-allocated status of ownership by possession. Had I called the Police – the risk of excessive punishment was greater.
When our pain is stronger than pleasures and we accept it as our reality – the gap becomes our natural protective structure. That is heritage. Such past of mine is my heritage. To the extent I consider individuals to be my children and heirs – they naturally have access to this heritage. No child with such heritage would suffer from poverty, war or diseases. They may all happen at the physical level but the mind filled with heritage order does not recognize any of these as perils. To me developing and sharing that heritage is the core purpose of every leadership position.