Saturday 30 November 2019

Gajalakshmi Paramasivam

30 November  2019


Immediate past Prime Minister of Sri Lanka, stepped down from the position of PM, stating that he respected the mandate of the People. There is value in such an approach. Successful Democracy requires freedom to manifest as per the structure of majority. The same person stayed on in the position of PM, in 2018, when the then President dismissed him unconstitutionally.

It is the common conclusion of many leaders that Tamils and Muslims voted against Mr Gotabaya Rajapaksa. Victor Ivan states in his Financial Times article ‘Unanswered Question’ as follows:

[The facts being such, even in the Presidential Election 2019, these two ethnic groups, Tamils ​​and Muslims, voted for Sajith Premadasa instead of voting for Gotabaya Rajapaksa, not because Sajith Premadasa had assured them that he would resolve their problems or had a secret agreement with them to do so. Their sole intention would have been for the purpose of creating a relaxed regime that would recognise their dignity as citizens and as human beings without unduly hurting them.]
To me this outcome confirms that Tamils & Muslims voted to be independent opposition of  Sinhalese within a Unitary structure. Within them – they are likely to have groups that take Opposition position. So long as this is expressed without damaging others’ contributions – they will find Opportunities to Oppose at national, Regional  and Global levels. Genuine contribution is never wasted. Problems often become uncontrollable due to those who have custody over power,  seeking to hastily manifest outcomes that leaves out others. Such manifestations are often desire-driven.

As per Hindu philosophy, desire and fear are Equal and Opposite in value. A group that is able to manifest the other side of desire as - fear - is Democratic as a whole. When Sinhalese manifest Desire driven outcomes and Tamils and Muslims almost instantaneously manifest Fear – we confirm wholesome Democracy as a whole. These elections have confirmed yet again that minorities in Sri Lanka are Equal Opposition to Majority Sinhala-Buddhists. These minorities have also categorically ruled out armed leadership of their communities. This is a huge victory for Democracy.

Intellectuals are able to bring both – fear and desire - together at the same time through their brain and discriminative thinking using higher measures than physical measures. .

To deliver this outcome, minorities needed to feel ownership in Sri Lanka as a whole and also the courage to participate in political expression of their rights. As Victor has highlighted, we did not vote for Premadasa because we expected quid pro quos. We expressed opposition to Rajapaksa as a united group. This is largely because of the discrimination pain which was kept in check – without taking immediate revenge action. As we learnt through the Ali Sabry demonstration,  some  may have experienced ‘fear’ but by not retaliating through their brothers and sisters who are hasty – they were able to benefit from the courage of those who had developed true ownership in the whole of Sri Lanka. Those who did vote against an armed leader  would not retaliate through arms. Those who promote their desire would not become relatives through Sri Lanka. Some of them would try to provoke revenge.

When the new President took oaths at Ruwanwelisaya and claimed that Sinhala Buddhists elected him – that confirmed to many of us ‘desire’ . This may be purely for the leadership position and its excitement - or extend to ‘punishing’ those who opposed him. It did invoke ‘fear’ in minorities who voted against him. But most members of the minorities are connected to all those who shared in their pain as if we were a common group. We may not be conscious of it – but this develops a Natural structure to the extent the victims respect as their seniors – those who comforted them as shareholders. There are numerous global individuals and groups who have done this with Tamil and Muslim victims and this led the development of a Democratic structure. So long as victims expressly recognize this – they become relatives of such regional and global leaders.

India’s Tamil Nadu is such a shareholder in our pain. Victor presents this as follows:

[Tamil is one of the oldest languages ​​in the world and the bond that the Tamils ​​in Sri Lanka have with the Tamil language is much stronger than the bond the Sinhala people have for their language. The Tamils ​​have rendered relatively a subordinate place to their religious concerns compared to their language. The Tamil language, they consider is the main factor that strengthens the ethnic cohesion of their community. ]
The reason is in the next paragraph:

[One day I was travelling with a transport agent who was distributing the Ravaya newspaper in his vehicle. He told me a strange story. He was a Sinhalese who lived in Batticaloa for a long time, until Black July 1983. He was the transport agent for Tamil newspapers in Batticaloa area. Although there was a practice and a possibility of throwing the newspaper bundle into the shops during the night, this practice was not possible in Tamil areas. It was necessary that the shopkeeper is woken up and the newspaper bundle is handed over to him. Throwing the paper bundle into the shop he said is considered a serious affront and insult done to the language.]

The reason is the Respect for Education. When knowledge  is shared through ‘home-language’ Education and Language are One. Most investors in Tamils of Sri Lanka know that education was of utmost priority to Tamils – especially Northern Province which has far less natural resources relative to Southern Sri Lanka. We had to strive harder to get higher paying jobs which usually required higher thinking. As per my culture – if a paper on which something has been written falls to the ground we usually say sorry to Mother Saraswathi (Goddess of Education) by picking up that paper and kissing it respectfully with our eyes. Hence the respectable  conduct by the Ravaya agent in Batticaloa.

Our civilization was built on the foundation of our sacrifices of other pleasures we could have had at that time out of the wealth we had. It is that sacrifice that naturally gives us the discipline which develops natural structures that keep us focused. Essential to education is respect for the guru. Guru – visible or invisible – is someone we learn from. Genuine Respect results in natural inheritance of the structure itself.

Tamil Militants who copied the Politicians who produced Vaddukoddai Resolution seriously damaged this relationship. Instead they ‘showed’ outcomes. When we live off ‘outcomes’ there are no lasting structures. Thus  the internal relationships of Northern Tamils were weakened and replaced by temporary associations. Victor highlights:

[The number of Tamils killed by the LTTE was very high – 99% of the Tamil leaders killed were by the LTTE and not by the security forces.]
A leader is equivalent to the number of civilians s/he represents as per position and/or by belief. The sacrifices they made to get to those positions were seriously damaged when they were killed by their own juniors. Sathyagraham is one such pathway that develops higher thinking and therefore structures. Those tall positions rendered the community its confidence to form relationships with wider world. Killing those educated leaders was to effectively kill our own structures that supported higher thinking – especially through education. Such killings led to associations with others – especially in India’s Tamil Nadu in the case of Tamil militants and Cuba’s Che Guevara in the case of Sinhala militants.  
But truth being independent of human systems – works to manifest Itself to support those who have upheld truth most of the time through personal sacrifices. Indian Government became such a medium recently – as confirmed by the newly elected President of Sri Lanka who has expressed commitment to reversing the 99 year lease agreement with China re Hambantota port. That land is close to Kathirgamam which is sacred to Hindus and about the glory of which Indian saints have sung.
These are positive manifestations for minorities in Sri Lanka who invested in Democracy. Majority on the other hand do use the system of Democracy to fulfil desires. These elections have facilitated us minorities  to protect ourselves from such rulers. This was possible because we expressed our opposition to being treated as minorities / juniors. Every junior who demonstrates higher standard of conduct and/or quality of produce independent of the senior – is automatically an Equal to the senior. Those who recognize it would continuously share laterally. That is the essence of Democracy led by Equal Opportunity system.

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