Wednesday 27 November 2019

Gajalakshmi Paramasivam

27 November  2019

Tamil Diaspora: Is it true? (Right of reply)

 People are more important than money and Institutional values are more important than approval of individuals. Money, People and Ownership make up the total value of our work. This is my personal discovery which helps me to keep going – despite disturbances and attempts to deviate us from the core purpose.

Tamil Diaspora: Is it true? (Right of reply)


NDTV reported yesterday,  under the heading ‘Top Detective Flees Sri Lanka After 'Death Threats'.:
A Sri Lankan detective investigating high-profile cases has fled the country after receiving death threats soon after the change of government, police and media reports said Monday.
Inspector Nishantha Silva has sought asylum in Switzerland, according to media reports.’
To the extent Mr Silva invested in law and order – his departure is a loss to Sri Lanka. Likewise,  every Sri Lankan who leaves for good. It’s interesting that Mr Silva is a Sinhalese and was active during the rule of immediate past regime. His departure was caused by a Sinhalese ruler who seems to be a foreigner. Opposition is internal. Beyond that is ‘foreign’ .
During his interview with Mr Faraz Shauketaly on 25 November, Mr Eran Wickramaratne a former minister in the UNP government stated about physically dividing he country – that ‘it used to be the LTTE dividing the country’ . Therein lies the way we picture armed militants. Given that the JVP also followed armed pathway and fought against the government,  did they not divide the country ? The measure needs to be One. One who uses different measure is dividing.
When I spent time with the LTTE in 2003 – during the ceasefire period – I learnt  that all of the cadre at grassroots level thought that they were defending their homeland. It is the ‘duty’ of every citizen to protect the place s/he considers her/his home. But one should stay within that ‘home spirit’ to deserve the support of Truth. A leader must first discipline her/his home group towards this.
In the above mentioned interview, Mr Faraz Shauketaly said words to the effect ‘for good governance you need a robust opposition’. When Politicians fail – this opposition could come from the People. Armed militants – to the extent they defend their rights – become that opposition. They unite through protection of  powers developed through different pathway to the government.
On 09 October 2019 I wrote as follows under the heading ‘ETHICS OR LAW FOR UNIVERSITIES?’, specifically relating to the University of Jaffna whose Vice Chancellor was dismissed for not disallowing Pongu Tamil monument within the University:

[The message in the above mentioned monument
The aspirations of the Tamils, namely right of self-determination, traditional homeland, Tamil as a distinct nationality, should be recognized.”
cannot be possessed by the University of Jaffna. If Academics of the University of Jaffna discovered the above – then they had the duty to go through the due academic process of publishing it as a Research discovery. That discovery ought to have then been part of the teaching in the appropriate faculties – including the faculty of law. To manifest in the stated manner was primitive and an insult to the University itself. ]

Within each group,  to the extent there is freedom to manifest – one has to have Equal Opportunity to Oppose. Without manifestation one is not entitled to oppose. A junior when s/he manifests becomes  Equal Opposition and when such opposition is not manifested – that person remains junior. The manifestation needs to be within the purpose of that group.
I myself demonstrated that kind of Opposition at the University of NSW. I was sent to prison even though there was no lawful provision for it and I did not resist arrest. Every stroke of lawful action – is heard by the mind of the Common owners of law. One who continues despite being dismissed by the custodians of power – connects to that Common  power which then leads that believer.
I believe that it was that ancestral power that led to the Acting Vice Chancellor of the University of Jaffna taking measures to ban LTTE related celebrations on 26th and 27th of this month.
[The University of Jaffna administration has sent round a circular, banning all Maaveerar Naal commemorations, a day before events are set to take place across the Tamil homeland and diaspora.
Maaveerar Naal - or Heroes’ Day - which is marked on November 27th, has been peacefully commemorated by students and staff of the university for several years. 
Under the previous Rajapaksa regime, Tamils in the North-East were forced to commemorate the day in secret, as the Sri Lankan security forces clamped down on any remembrance events.
Despite the return of the Rajapaksa, Tamils into the homeland have continued preparations for tomorrow.]

I  opposed Professor Kandasamy through the case against Dr Dharshanan. Professor Kandasamy may not know me even now. But that common owner of Sri Lankan University knows me as I know all other owners through different pathways. Hence I am satisfied that I completed the ownership experience to eliminate distractions from University. If the students and staff  of the University overrule – then they will be limited to their investment in University education and also lose their ‘right’ to the protection of Common law and order forces.
About ownership of Jaffna depicted by the LTTE through the Karthigai Flower – I wrote as follows on 22 October 2010 (
[Tamil Karthikeyan (Lord Muruga due to His birth in November / Karthigai), sure did recognize my work. A few years after working in Vanni – I happened to join the Carlingford Sai Center – here in New South Wales – at the invitation of Mrs. Vijaya Amirthalingam. Gradually, I started making the garlands for the Shrine on Sundays. I bought the flowers from Flemington markets usually on Saturday mornings. One day I saw a nice looking flower and I bought it because I was attracted to it. I knew I could not make garlands with it but I was specially attracted to that flower. I bought a bunch – for $6. There were 6 flowers in the bunch. The following morning, along with the garlands I took these flowers also to the Carlingford Shrine. There, Mrs. Sivarajah, mother of LTTE activist Yathavan spontaneously said ‘That is the Boys’ flower’. Mrs. Sivarajah went on to explain to me about the Botany of the flower. I was happy that someone was happy and continued to pray. After the prayer session – Mrs. Ganga Sundaram came over to us and said ‘That is Murugan’s flower. It has six petals. In India it usually blooms in November’. That made me very happy because I am so very devoted to Lord Muruga. Many in our group wondered as to how come I had bought it here in Sydney?

After Group Prayers at Carlingford Shrine, my husband and I went to see a nephew and took two of the Karthigai flowers with us – one for us and one for the young couple. Our nephew said that he had purchased the plastic version at Tamil Heroes day celebrations but that he had never seen the real one before that. Our nephew has lived most of his life in Vaddukoddai. While we were there, there was a call from a friend of theirs – in relation to Dr, Gowripalan of the University of NSW wanting to contact me regarding a financial proposal to help needy Tamils. That friend said that Dr.Gowripalan had been very appreciative of my stand against unjust discrimination at the University of NSW. That was the first time a Tamil of independent standing showed appreciation for my work and sacrifices towards Eliminating Racial Discrimination at higher levels of Australian Public Administration. I felt a connection between the Karthigai Flower and all this but did not know how to translate it.
In contrast - Mr Malinda Seneviratne who to my mind is a Sinhalese activist presented a different interpretation Kathirgamam -   a place which is specially dedicated to Lord Muruga . This in essence is the ethnic problem – of Sri Lanka.

The article Kataragama and Athara Maga , begins as follows:

[Those conversant in Sinhala would get it immediately. A play on words. Kataragama is known to almost all Sri Lankans as a destination of pilgrims, place of worship and a place as good as any to reflect on times gone by if you’ve been there many times over the years
Kataragama. It is the name of a God, named after place but with many other names, and among them, these: Skanda, Kandasurindun, Murugan, Murukan, Kartikeya, Sanmugam and Gangeya. Katara-Gama, if one were to break it that way, would be ‘village in the desert’ or ‘desert-village’. Other legends have it that Kataragama is a corruption of Karthikeya-Grama, or ‘The Village of Prince/God Karthikeya’. ‘Athara Maga’ means ‘(somewhere) along the way.’ Nothing divine in that. No fascinating legends either.]

The above confirms to me that the current President who took oaths at Ruwanwelisaya in front of King Dutugemunu monument  has invoked the power of Kathirgamam. Wikipedia confirms as follows, the connection between King Duttugemunu and  Kathirgamam:
[Stories relating to some of the king's constructions reflect a spiritual relationship with the Kataragama deviyo. Two such sites are Henakaduwa Purana Raja Maha Viharaya at Tangalle and Ruhunu Kataragama Maha Devalaya.
During the period of preparations for war with King Elara, the Kataragama deity appeared in front of King Dutugemunu and gave him a sword for him to use in the war at the present day site of Henakaduwa temple (hena and kaduwa, meaning thunder and sword respectively in Sinhalese).
After defeating Elara in single combat in the Battle of Vijithapura and subsequently regaining power in the country, the Kataragama deity appeared yet again before Dutugemunu while the latter was in meditation at Kiri Vehera, Kataragama. The victorious king asked the deity what should be done in return for the deity's help in winning the battle. The god replied by shooting an arrow in the direction of Wedihiti Kanda from Kiri Vehera and instructed Dutugemunu to build it a shrine where the arrow lands.]

Even though a Buddhist – King Dutugemunu did not seek Buddha’s blessings. If he had, he would have renounced his throne. Lord Muruga is a War-Lord. Hence Tamil Hindu soldiers chant – ‘Vettri Vel Veera Vel’ when going to battle. Vel is the spear of Lord Muruga. As the Sunday Observer cartoon below depicts , the lion in the Sri Lankan Flag hands over to King Dutugemunu reincarnated as President Gotabaya – the sword to fight against Tamil king:

The sword in the Sri Lankan flag is vertically held to the ground by the Lion. The sword in the flag of King Dutugemunu  is like in the above cartoon. One is entitled to conclude that the lion is Lord Murugan. Is that going to be Prabhakaran coming in the form of Modi and New Delhi being the Kathirgamam?

Lord Krishna said that Truth manifests in the form of our belief. I pray regularly  to Lord Muruga specifically through Kantha Sashti Kavasam in which Kathirgama Kathirvel Murugan has been specially mentioned in the hymn by its author Swami Devaraya who as per today’s demarcations was Indian. But every time a Sri Lankan chants the hymn with belief – the minds become One. Such a mind has the power to invoke India’s Tamil Nadu whose presiding deity is Murugan. Jaffna Kingdom and Tamil Nadu would naturally become One through such believers. We don’t need to wage war or enter into agreements.
Wikipedia presents the following about Kathirgamam:

[The first literary mention of Kataragama in a context of a sacred place to kandha-Murugan is in its Tamil form Kathirkamam in the 15th-century devotional poems of Arunagirinathar. Tradition claims that he visited the forest shrine when he composed the poems. According to his poems, the deity dwelt on top of a mountain.[1] The first mention of Kataragama deviyo in the form Khattugama, as a guardian deity of Sri Lanka and its Buddhist relics, was in the Pali chronicle of Jinakalamali written during the 16th century in what is today Thailand.[10][11] (see Jatukham Rammathep a popular Thai amulet, based on Khattugama, a deity from Sri Lanka) Kataragama village is first mentioned in the historical annals known as Mahavamsa written down in the 5th century CE. It mentions a town named Kajjaragama from which important dignitaries came to receive the sacred Bo sapling sent from Ashoka’s Mauryan Empire on 288 BCE.[12] (According to Ponnambalam Arunachalam Kajjaragama is derived from Kârttikeya Grâma ("City of Kartikeya"), shortened to Kajara-gama) ]

Sir Ponnambalam Arunachalam was the brother of Sir Ponnambalam Ramanathan who was honoured by the Hon D S Senanayake as "the greatest Ceylonese of all times". Sir Ponnambalam Ramanathan was also educated at Royal College where many supporters of Mr Ranil Wickremesinghe  also had their education.  These are networks of common belief that support those who are true to those institutions / places.  They are now in opposition.

As per Mr Malinda Seneviratne’s interpretation of Kathirgamam philosophy :
[So what’s this juxtaposition apart from the obvious play of alliteration? Well, it’s a well-known Sinhala saying, danagena giyoth kataragama, nodana giyoth atharamaga (‘if you know the road, you will reach Kataragama and if you don’t, you won’t’ or rather, by implication, ‘you will get lost’)……..
There are Kataragamas everywhere. Any place of worship is a Kataragama in this sense. And it’s not just places. Any objective is a Kataragama. Here are some common Kataragamas: an examination, a career goal, knowledge acquisition, building a house, educating oneself or one’s children, a political project and even charity. ]

In Mahabharatham – Lord Krishna says to Throupathi that when she called out to Him through Common but distant names He did not appear. But when she said Iruthaya Vaasa – One who dwells in my heart – He came instantaneously. It was because I had Lord Buddha in my heart that I was able to invoke him when dealing with Buddhist officers whose approval I needed to serve the refugees in the camps in 2009.

As per my family sharing, in the olden days – one had to have the call from one’s heart to go to Kathirgamam. Otherwise one would get lost on the way. I interpret that as one has to have belief based call when there is no regulated pathway to reach the destination. I had such a call – in 2005 to go to Mankerni in Batticaloa to serve Tsunami victims. After President Kumaratunga accepted my proposals I went on my own to Kathirgamam – to say thank you. There at the shrine the sweet rice that the priest intended for a Sinhalese lady came into my hands. As asked by the Priest I went outside and waited for some time. When the priest did not come I went over to the Ganesh temple next door where I could sit down and enjoy the rice which was my main meal after a long day.
Patrick Harrigan – an American wrote as follows about this connection that he identified with:
[You will immediately notice the professional approach that Gaja and Julia have brought to our work in Mankerny, which hitherto had consisted of my occasional visits, including 18 annual pada yatra foot pilgrimages through Mankerny, whose poverty never prevented the Mankerny folks from feeding the multitude of pilgrims on their long trek to Kataragama. Gaja’s style also tells you something about her motivation in wishing to serve the poorest devotees of the inscrutable god of Kataragama, Lord Skanda-Murugan’]

Malinda seems to think that he can read Kathirgamam’s value without much effort. He can – to the extent it has been made Buddhist shrine during the times reachable by our human body and brain. Not so the Soul value which is identified with only through Belief / Truth/Purity of Purpose. Like Patrick and Julia – many Americans have supported Tamils including through common faith in Murugan. The inscrutability confirms this confidential and undisturbed connection through which Sri Lankan Tamils will connect to regional and global networks. This needed separation from those who were ‘attached’ to physical manifestations of ownership. The Prescriptive Ordinance Sri Lanka confirms that one has the right to ownership by continuous, uninterrupted, adverse occupation. That overrides other visible forms of ownership including through the official written rule by those who are elected by majority vote.

Tamils who so occupy through belief are owners with the right to self-governance.  This includes those of us living in Australia – as confirmed by the Karthigai Flower coming to me here in Australia. The new President whose family has demonstrated that it believes in Horoscopes – have invoked the past structures. Hindustani Times confirms :

[India-Sri Lanka joint military exercise to begin in Pune from December 1]

Tamil militants were trained in India by government officers. Are they therefore chasing away the Sinhalese law and order officers? Is it their spirit that is working through Mr Modi?

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