Tuesday 31 March 2020

Gajalakshmi Paramasivam

31 March  2020


Truth manifests Itself in wonderfully diverse ways. On 28 March 2020, the New York Times published as follows under the heading ‘As Pandemic Rages, Sri Lanka’s President Pardons a War Criminal’ :
[Sri Lanka’s president has pardoned a soldier who was sentenced to death for killing eight civilians during the country’s civil war, leading to accusations that the government was taking advantage of the chaos from the coronavirus pandemic to free a wartime ally accused of atrocities.
The pardon reverses one of the very few convictions from the 26-year civil war, during which dozens of militants and military officers were accused of war crimes. The pardoned soldier, former Staff Sgt. Sunil Ratnayake, was sentenced in 2015 for blindfolding eight civilians from the Tamil ethnic group, slitting their throats and dumping their bodies into a sewer in 2000. Three of the victims were children.
The pardon brought outrage from rights activists and opposition politicians, but little obvious reaction from the broader Sri Lankan public, which is under a strict curfew in order to contain the spread of the coronavirus.
President Gotabaya Rajapaksa instructed the Ministry of Justice to release Mr. Ratnayake from prison on Thursday. Mr. Rajapaksa, who was elected in November, is himself accused of having ordered war crimes during the civil war, when he served as defense secretary.]

When I first learnt about the Presidential Pardon, I did not oppose it but concluded that the Tamil parallels of Sgt Sunil Ratnayake were also pardoned by Mother Sri Lanka. As a Sri Lankan elder I have the moral authority to pardon  every other  Sri Lankan of any ethnicity – even though they are punished by the judicial process or would be guilty through the lawful process. That is the law of Common faith.
As if to confirm this, I learnt about the spread of ‘impunity virus’ through the following in the Island article headed ‘HRCSL Chief intervenes on behalf of prisoners
... recommends releasing selected prisoners under ‘licensing system’:

[Human Rights Commissioner Dr. Deepika Udagama has requested Prisons Commissioner Jayasiri Tennakoon to take measures for the protection of prisoners. Dr. Udagama has written to Tennakoon after discussing with him over the phone how to safeguard the health of prisoners during the current health epidemic. 
The following letter has been sent to the Chief Justice, Attorney-General and the Acting IGP as well as the Prisons Chief:

"Having considered all factors, our Commission wishes to make the following recommendations to the Department of Prisons (DOP), specifically to address the issue of overcrowding that is of particular concern during a health epidemic of this nature:
 i) DOP should take urgent action, in consultation with relevant authorities, to release those who continue to remain in remand custody due to their inability to post bail in the required sum. We are pleased to learn that you are already giving attention to the matter; and 
ii) DOP should take necessary steps to release under the licensing system that is permitted under the law convicted prisoners who are:
a) Seriously or terminally ill;
b) Those over the age of 70; and
c) Those convicted of minor offences.

 We fully recognize the challenges facing the prison system, particularly at present when there is a grave threat to health. Our Commission, pursuant to the mandate conferred on it under Act No. 21 of 1996, is paying special attention to the rights of those who have been deprived of liberty as they are more vulnerable to disease than the general population."

I protested against our Australian Prime Minister’s advice in breach of my ‘sovereignty’ – for over 70s to self-isolate themselves inside their own homes. I needed to protest to maintain my own sanity. As per my own law – unless they have evidence of unlawful conduct, no one has authority above me inside my home where I am the queen. If by the age of 70, I do not know what’s best for me – then I am not a sovereign person. In my own home meaning anything that I bring into my home through my mind also and not just through my body.

Yesterday, a school time friend of mine who became also a family friend – said to me over the phone that my brother   was the best intellectual performer in our family and she attributed it to my mother. Under other circumstances, I would have rejected it only mentally. But yesterday I was carrying the valuation of my friend and classmate Marie Pathinathar who arranged for another classmate of ours to meet me just before the social distancing rule was introduced. This other classmate expressed much appreciation for my academic achievements – as did another junior in Jaffna, during our recent visit.  I felt that it helped them to elevate their own self-confidence , by adding themselves to me also. Hence when my family friend- classmate elevated  my brother’s status I had to expressly negate that energy from my home. Hence I said that our mother whom this family friend respects as her Maths guru – had categorically stated that I was the best intellectual performer in our family and that my mother had referred to our teacher Mrs Margret Saverimuttu’s certification that I was her ‘star pupil’. Margret Teacher as our teacher was known, was a strict disciplinarian. Hence if I am demoted below the status of my brother – and that is acceptable to me – then I demote my Alma Mater – Holy Family Convent – Jaffna. These are all institutional structures that I carry in my mind to assess and take my position in a sovereign group. Hence , as I did with Mr Morrison’s advice, I negated the infiltration by the above person who herself is missing the elevation by her grandchildren and children during this period of isolation. To me the certification by a disciplinarian that Mrs Margret Saverimuttu was, is the parallel of head of real Judiciary certifying me through law. My family friend’s certification of my brother is the parallel of social media certification which comes largely through hearsay and is used as per our own convenience.

I met Dr. Deepika Udagama when the lady was honoured by the Sri Lanka Reconciliation Forum, Sydney. This was before Dr. Udagama became Chairperson of the Human Rights Commission – Sri Lanka. Dr. Udagama is reported to be  ‘Sri Lanka's alternate member to the United Nations (UN) Sub-Commission on the promotion and protection of Human Rights’. Yet I have no knowledge of any public criticism by Dr. Udagama about the Presidential Pardon.

As a person carrying high status on the basis of expertise  in  international human rights law, Dr. Udagama had the duty to protect the institutional values of the UN. Accordingly all prisoners of war ought to have been released under the Licensing system, when the President pardoned Mr Sunil Ratnayake who was found guilty of war crimes by the Sri Lankan Judiciary.

The mind to mind infection of disorder is a higher and more damaging risk than any risk to the physical body. After the Soul, the mind is the most common part of  a person. Human Rights are based on the belief that all humans are Equal. If Dr. Udagama had truly believed this to be true and had disciplined herself to adhere to this fundamental value,  Dr. Udagama would have used the licensing scheme to release all prisoners of war and upheld the Sovereignty of Sri Lanka.

As for the over 70s concession – it is in breach of anti - age – discrimination laws. An independent  70 year old would survive better in prison than a dependent 50 year old. Taken as a whole, the prison system needs such persons to naturally strengthen its sovereignty as one family.

I call upon Dr. Udagama to rectify her mistake and recommend the licencing system in her territory on equal footing as the President has in his territory.

Monday 30 March 2020

Gajalakshmi Paramasivam

30 March  2020


Last evening when Prime Minister Scott Morrison advised ‘All Australians aged 70 and over 'should stay home and self-isolate’, my heart fell. I was feeling good all day  and then this. I suddenly felt tired and weak. I went to bed early. This morning I thought about it during meditation. To my mind, this time in this crisis the PM was wrong for my group – the independent mothers’ group.

Given that in a democracy the government is limited in its true authority to the Sovereignty of the People – I consider this an abuse of power by the PM. May be he is tired and overworked now at the age of 51, and projected on the basis of his own experience – and  concluded that he would become dependent on his children and/or juniors in government by the time he is 70. My spiritual Guru  was active until He left His body. Jesus cannot be limited to the age of His body. That would be to mourn on Good Friday and not celebrate Easter Sunday.
Scott’s advice  was confusing because there are special queues for the elderly  which means they / we are taken to be capable of operating on their / our own. Queues for us and self-isolation desire for Political figures? Such directions would disconnect the flow of belief from the sovereign citizen to the government.
Then I received the Economy Next article headed : ‘Sri Lanka asks for international debt relief on Coronavirus hit’:

[ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka has asked international lending agencies to give debt relief for vulnerable nations as a Coronavirus pandemic is wreaking havoc around the world.
“President Gotabaya Rajapaksa requests international donor agencies to provide a debt moratorium or debt deferment facility to all vulnerable developing nations to the COVID – 19 risk,” his office said in a statement.
“President had urged Director General of the World Health Organization to forward this request to multi-lateral and bilateral lending agencies.”]

In this pandemic – as per reported figures – Sri Lanka is doing 10 times better than its sugar-daddy China, in terms of infections and 50 times better in terms of Deaths. If China had spent money in improving the  Respiratory health standards of its home folks instead of  sugar quoting  the Rajapaksa activities, Sri Lanka would not need to beg international agencies. This President alienated himself from International Common standards in relation to Democratic Accountability in terms of ethnic cleansing which happened behind closed doors. He has no moral authority to expect assistance from International agencies. If indeed China was a democracy – its People will protest against such assistance to a ‘foreigner’.

If Sri Lanka were a relative it would have sent its armed forces across to China last year – and contributed to curbing the spread of the virus at the early stages.   Reference to ‘vulnerable developing nations’ is the parallel of  our Australian PM labelling us the over 70s’ as high risk group. Former abused Buddhism and the latter weakened investment in Christ.

Italy’s death rate may have invoked anxieties. Given that majority Italians are Roman Catholics – they have the moral duty to measure success through Soul value realised and not the physical.
At the beginning of last year – the Italian Government raised the age limit for drawing retirement benefits and also introduced the ‘Quota 100’ scheme which facilitated early retirement for those who started work early. Unless those above 60 understood the structure – they are likely to have feared losses due to the 2019 changes. Restructure of the mind after 60 becomes difficult. In addition, Italy is reported to suffer higher than European average rate of dementia. Advice such as the one by Mr Morrison yesterday would push those who tend to be dependent to become even more dependent on their children who are also being challenged in many ways by the Coronavirus.

Some of my uncles retired early when the then Sri Lankan government introduced the ‘Sinhala Only’ legislation in 1956 and at the same time facilitated early retirement for those who sought to retire due to not wanting to learn a new language in old age. Many of them picked up farming and became landlords. The greater loss to the government was the oneness through common Public Service.
Sri Lanka’s curfew is an example of youth becoming more unruly in areas where they think they are the rulers. Yesterday – two days after I received the complaint of our temple fence being cut – the cleaner rang to report that four youth had jumped over  the gate in broad daylight – claiming that it was cooler inside the temple, than inside their homes. I asked the cleaner to send me photos, until I am able to obtain footage from the security cameras. I said further – that beyond that they would be taken care of Lord Vairavar – the Lord of Security.

My husband asked me how? I said I have invested in the security of that temple and its surroundings. Divinity in the form of  Lord Vairavar would have received that investment on behalf of those who were in need of that protection and who believed also in the importance of  security of a ‘home’ in the form through which I have invested . This usually begins with their investment in formal education. In this instance – education of  the children in that area. Sometimes this protection happens through mental illness in the one who drew benefits but was unfaithful to the provider. In rural parts of Northern Sri Lanka they refer to this as Vairavar power when positive and Soonyam / black magic, when done for selfish purposes with negative effect on the whole.

I neither believed nor disbelieved it. But later I realized that it is a kind of mind to mind influence to which they were giving their own form. One of the four mentioned above was mentally ill for some time. But when the youth are idle – they go back to such pranks. If the police of that area do not take action, I have decided to instruct the cleaner to turn off all the lights so the folks who turned a blind eye to the breaches by the sons of their neighbours – would be blamed by those who need the lights for security. When that happens I would interpret it as Lord Vairavar having balanced the equation of  common faith.

My approach to the Coronavirus challenge is also based on faith. The values I have realized about the mind living beyond the body, have been shared with many groups. Hence I neither fear nor submit to death by giving up on my body which at most times is controlled by my mind. The mind filled with faith and/or by intellectual balance is the key to effectively killing the bad virus. Not all of it is bad.

Sunday 29 March 2020

Gajalakshmi Paramasivam

29 March  2020

Commonness  vs. Particularization

I walked into the Bangladeshi Supermarket in Eastlakes, NSW, Australia. Before going to the Flour isle  I paused at the biscuits and cookies isle. I do not know why I did so – because I was looking for Atta (wholemeal)  Flour. My eyes went to ‘Nankhatai’.  I had not tasted them until now but remember an experience shared by my mother. In Burma, my mother and her sisters grew up in the same household as their cousin Padma. According to my mum – Aunt Padma had shared the Nankhatai that her mum gave her,  with her cousin Manon who was also very fond of the sweet. Aunt Padma’s mum did not have enough to go around, and hence quietly gave only her daughter. But Aunt Padma being a sharing soul – shared with her cousin. In later life Aunt Padma was never wanting in family goodwill support. Yesterday, when I came across the ‘Nankhatai’ – none of the above three members of the family were with me physically or living currently in any part of the world. But the value of the sweet sharing was with me.

Our children had organized to gather in our home together with Arun our nephew, for my birthday. The arrangements got cancelled due to the social distancing rules and also non-essential travel from Melbourne where two of our children live. I did receive wishes from our MPs – State and Federal. I was happy about it. But I must have missed the family subconsciously and hence the three good mothers in our family must have drawn me to the ‘Nankhatai’. To me that was blessing from our common mother.

To become Common – we need to forego the particular. Hence now I look for influences and reasons beyond the physical and mental to identify with the causal forces. After the above experience this morning  Aunt Padma’s son Ravi arranged for me to have conference chat – with his sisters in Brisbane and Toronto as well as my sister in Singapore - which was better than having a party. All this confirmed to me yet again that Energy which is accessed through Common Belief leads us to higher level enjoyment.

I recalled this morning, the parallel to the above sharing,  by Swadesh Roy’s article ‘Will China’s strategic embrace of Myanmar spell more trouble for Rohingyas?’ in the South Asia Monitor which included the following about me:

[Author and journalist Gajalakshmi Paramasivam headlined one of her articles on Sri Lanka as ‘Tamils out and China in’. Paramasivam regularly writes about the plight of Sri Lankan Tamils in newspapers, portals and blogs. Among others who have worked on Sri Lanka’s Tamil genocide is writer and journalist Frances Harrison, whose stupendous work 'Still Death Counting', recounts details of that genocide and how brutally human beings are killed and become refugees for economic or business interests.]

That respect shared publicly earned Swadesh Roy my natural blessings. My writings are based on my truth escalated as per the need of the group on behalf of whom I write. In the case of Tamils, I shared my feelings due to indicators beginning with Shangrila hotel fire. Now when Sri Lanka has restricted movement through curfew but continues to indicate hopes of tourism boost after this pandemic is over and done with, where would China rank in terms of tourism arrivals in Sri Lanka? As per my knowledge, last year, China ranked second after India in Tourist arrivals in Sri Lanka. The simple minded Sri Lankan would call it the China virus. Each one is right as per the level at which they think. In an ethnically divided country – the China factor is likely to be a strong apparent causal reason. Scientific reasoning would be the way of  one who thinks in Common. Since Buddhism is particularized in the Sri Lankan Constitution and Sinhalese is particularized in the mind of majority Sri Lankans – the depth of the common Sri Lankan mind is likely to particularise and not think in Common Scientific terms.

Is this therefore the karma that the current Sri Lankan government earned through Chinese handouts – especially during the war? Was  the UNP guided by its intuition when its leader Mr Ranil Wickremesinghe silently handed over he reigns to the President’s brother? With or without Article 150 (3) through which the Prime Minister is claiming that the President has the authority to draw funds from the Consolidated Reserves – the Coronavirus has seriously damaged the travel and tourism industry. Is China being punished for influencing particularization? Is it this government’s karma to go through this crisis after dissolving parliament? Did the President lack the intuition to expect this extended suspension? Is it due to weak investment in Commonness?

Saturday 28 March 2020

Gajalakshmi Paramasivam

28 March  2020

 Saint Yoga Swami – by Pradeepkumar Paramasivam


During this Coronavirus epidemic, we tend to measure through numbers and not relativity.  But the experience is relative to that which is our world. At governments’ level – the American government is doing five times as bad as China and Australia is doing twice as bad as China. In terms of deaths American government is doing twice as bad as China but Australia is four times better than China  and ten times better than the USA.

Yesterday I was stopped by my truth when I emotionally sought to support the Tamil political leadership over its stand in relation to the Pardoning of an Army officer in relation to Mirusuvil massacre in 2000. I received a call from our temple caretakers about the break and enter of youth around our temple in Sangarathai-Thunaivi which is our parallel of Mirusuvil. When my own truth cautions me, I stop and listen. During my challenges with the Administrators of the University of NSW – at one stage – when I was about to dissuade Jeff Warnock – then the Administrative Director of the Faculty of Medicine, not to leave, the message from our friend Sunthu came  - with the picture of Yoga Swami – asking me to Summa Iru / Be still. I did not write to Jeff but let the truth flow. Yesterday’s message was similar. In both instances, I learnt the logic later.

In the case of the Mirisuvil massacre at the centre of the Presidential pardon, Wikipedia presents the following picture:

[The Mirusuvil massacre happened on 20 December 2000, when eight internally displaced refugees returning to inspect their property were arrested on 19th December 2000 in a village named Mirusuvil close to Jaffna. They were subsequently murdered allegedly by Sri Lankan Army soldiers and buried in a mass grave, about 16 miles east of Jaffna town.
The refugees had returned from Udupiddy, further north. They returned to Mirusuvil on 19 December to inspect their houses and to collect firewood, when they were seized by the Army. The refugees had obtained permission from local authorities before visiting their former properties.
According to the evidence of District Medical Officer, Dr. C. Kathirvetpillai, their throats had been slashed. The dead included three teenagers and five-year-old Vilvarajah Prasath.  The murders came to light because one of the arrested, Ponnuthurai Maheswaran allegedly escaped from Army custody with serious injuries and informed relatives. Eventually the Sri Lankan government charged five Sri Lankan Army soldiers with illegal arrests, torturemurder and burial of their dead bodies in a mass grave. The case was still pending in 2007.]

Mirusuvil, where the massacre happened and was the home area of the victims was within  the high security zone and also near Muhamalai where the LTTE had their checkpoints. I went as an ordinary person - through those checkpoints many times during the war. Udupiddy is more than 40 kms north of Mirusuvil. It therefore does not make sense that the victims would come all that way to collect firewood. More importantly, almost a year prior to on 18 December 1999 that the LTTE  killed  28 and injured 80 and blinded President Kumaratunga in one eye. While the victims may have been unaware of this - the soldiers are likely to have been on an emotional high due to that bombing by the LTTE.

The government in Northern Sri Lanka – at that time was the LTTE. It was their duty to protect civilians. Permission from the local authorities is of no use and is most unacceptable. A genuine authority would have refused permission under those circumstances.

As a whole – we, the community failed those victims. If they were LTTE supporters  - then the suffering was NOT punishment but part of the war in which civilians have no say.

‘Summa Iru’ is  the right way if we are to not encourage another war. The Diaspora wants to win at the UN level. To win – they must pick the losses where the LTTE has no parallel record. LTTE killed Tamil politicians. That was its way. If we continue to be blind to that – then we have no authority to use the law against the opposition. The base needs to be truth of the person applying the law and/or the demonstrated respect of the side for the law at the level of the institution – in this instance the UN.

Unless we so regulate this -   we would become more and more like the very opposition / enemy we are finding fault with. That is the way the enemy who fills our mind brainwashes us through ourselves.

In Tamil (Indian) cinema, we often hear the saying ‘Even god cannot change it’. This means that god is less powerful than the claimant. What kind of logic is that? I am yet to hear any other Tamil oppose and dismiss such claim as blasphemous.  When we become part of such audience, they write the script for us – including for the next war – as MGR the cinema hero turned Chief Minister wrote in LTTE leader’s brain.

Friday 27 March 2020

Gajalakshmi Paramasivam

27 March  2020


‘Sri Lankan President pardoned an Army officer who was on death row for killing eight Tamil civilians’ – Hindu

The Tamil Political leadership is reported to have responded as follows:

[The Tamil National Alliance (TNA), Sri Lanka’s main party representing Tamils of the north and east, condemned President Gotabaya Rajapaksa’s decision to pardon and release an Army officer who was on death row for killing eight Tamil civilians — including a 5-year-old and two teenagers— in 2000 during the civil war.
“If true, we condemn the opportunistic action of Prez @GotabayaR under guise of dealing with the issue of prisoners at a time like this. This is one case in which a person was actually convicted. Other cases weren’t even prosecuted or were acquitted,” the TNA tweeted.]

My question is what is the UNP which represents minorities doing? Are there no law respecting Sri Lankan politicians in the majority race?

Even as I began writing, I received a call from Vaddukoddai in Northern Sri Lanka – informing that our temple fence has been cut again, last night – which obviously was during curfew time. It was sickening to hear that the ‘boys’ would do this. The timing of the message made me think again. As a community what have we earned in the eyes of Almighty? What has any Tamil politician – including TNA in Vaddukoddai done to discipline these boys – due to whose disrespect for law and order,  our contribution to law and order is being rubbished?

The irresponsible conduct of young ones who failed to follow the social distancing rules here in Australia, resulted in accelerated spread of the virus. It looks as if Vaddukoddai is breeding its own virus of unruly conduct to disturb the peace in temples. When the custodians of law let us down Dharma protects us. Temples are institutions through which customary law and order is learnt and maintained.

My question to the TNA is – have we, as a community,  earned the support of Dharma? If yes, the above would not have happened to me in what was a high security zone during the war. Mr Wigneswaran who represented TNA came to this village to make his speech. But what did he do to address this issue of invading others’ properties? Since they have not done anything about it – the question that comes to my mind is -  are we entitled to more than our investment in Common Law to find fault with the President ? The limit is our truth or our own investment in Common Law – whichever is higher. No more.

I reported the matter to Vaddukoddai Police and informed the caretaker to warn the parent of one of the boys whom I disciplined in February.

The call came to inform me about the real need of Northern Sri Lanka – investment in common law. Those who are moving through the UN have the duty to first ensure that the beneficiaries are worthy and are not likely to abuse any victory at global level.

Information from cyberspace comes to me when I seek it. I am therefore not surprised that the call came at this point on the basis of truth of our community as a whole. God never fails the believer.
Like emigration due to war, I no longer reside at the cottage within the temple grounds – built by us. I stay at Jetwing in town where I feel safe and respected. The funding for that comes from my Airbnb accommodation here in Australia.  That is how Universal power of belief works. If TNA and/or Mr Wigneswaran were seeking through ownership based belief – they would have found these areas of need. Neither has the support of Dharma in the case of occupied lands. The buck must stop with us. That was the mandate of the People. If TNA considered itself to be the true Opposition – it would not have vacated post after the Constitutional coup in 2018.

If UNP does not oppose it – then it also limits Sri Lanka to the absolute power of the President. We get the government we deserve.

Gajalakshmi Paramasivam

27 March  2020


Tracey Grimshaw of ‘A Current Affair’ raised the issue of ‘Second Home’ in the case of self-isolation by Prince Charles. The government’s stand is confirmed as follows:

["If you live elsewhere, please don't use the Highlands as your means of self-isolation," tweeted Forbes, a member of the Scottish Parliament for the sprawling Highland constituency of Skye, Lochaber and Badenoch.
"People live here who are trying to follow government guidance and the continuing flow of camper vans and other traffic who appear to be escaping the cities is not helping."
On Monday, United Kingdom Prime Minister Boris Johnson and Scotland's First Minister Nicola Sturgeon urged people to remain at home and self-isolate in order to avoid this potentially fatal illness that has claimed lives worldwide, mostly among the elderly and those with underlying medical conditions] Aljazeera

It is interesting that the Prince chose to isolate in his inherited home in Scotland. That which is inherited has no ranking. It is Common in value. The Royal family as a whole represents inherited value of the nation.

To my mind, our home in Coogee is of such Common value. I sought the blessings of the Chairman of Prima in Sri Lanka, where I was the Financial Controller.  The property was developed by Prima and by recognizing the chairman as an elder – I invoked the heritage value. Later  when I sought to uphold my true position at the University of NSW, there was the risk of losing this home. But amazingly we continued to have the necessary resources to service the loan. As I keep saying – this home looked after us when we had a real need. I now better appreciate the saying ‘Dharma (Natural Justice )looks after those who look after Dharma’ .

‘Staying at home’ during this time of Coronavirus – in many ways would reinforce home values. There is a saying in Tamil ‘Kamban veetu kattu thariyum kavi paadum", / Even the  loom in Poet Kamban’s home  is poetic’

To the extent we worked for our home and family every member of that family would be able to draw on that Energy. Staying together helps us to recognize this strength. Even if the older folks die during this period, they/we have the opportunity to know that young ones care about us. This sharing strengthens our heritage and keeps the whole together.

Every Sovereign unit is supported by God’s system. This could be a home, workplace, nation or the world. The more we share in each other’s pain the stronger this Oneness.

Those who seek physical togetherness towards this would not die. They live forever.

Thursday 26 March 2020

Gajalakshmi Paramasivam

26 March  2020


I spoke to our Temple Priest in Northern Sri Lanka to conduct the necessary rituals in relation to the death anniversary of Sri Premakumar, at his home-shrine. I was firm about not being an exception to the Curfew. Sri’s wife Vathanee arranges this in honour of her husband’s life to be conducted at our family temple in Sangarathai, in Northern Sri Lanka. I made the arrangements with the priest in February when we were physically there. After learning that the curfew has been extended – I restructured the arrangements.

I was therefore shocked to read the report under the headline ‘COVID-19: Sri Lanka agrees to provide medical personnel as aid’ at  https://edition.mv/news/15730

The parallel of that here in Australia would be for Australian medical personnel to go to New Zealand.

To my mind, this means that the Sri Lankan government  does not feel the threat of Coronavirus to be serious. This is possible due to it distancing itself more and more from the global leadership. This is fine if Sri Lankan government feels that Sri Lanka is self-sufficient to protect itself from this enemy about whose causal influences we seem to know very little. Those who are like family to me in Northern Sri Lanka expressed much appreciation that I called often to ask them how they were coping. I advised those with school-going children to do home-studies and to not idle. Isolation breeds its own problems. Hence the ongoing mind-sharing with those who are still recovering from the war.

Sri Lankans are entitled to the full and complete services of fellow Sri Lankans. This is the reason for self-isolation at National level. Maldives is NOT part of Sri Lanka.

When there is nothing I think I can do to make it better for someone, I pray. When my prayers are heard, I feel more calm. When Gwen Harrigan, who is part of my University of NSW (UNSW) family expressed appreciation for my article ‘Value of Pain SharingI connected it to my self-isolation pain during the ownership challenges I faced at UNSW in which Gwen also shared.

I do not have the medical expertise to cure the victims. But I do have the depth of mind to share and ease the mental pain of the new victim.

In 2003, during the time I got ready to go to Sri Lanka on a UNDP mission, my maternal uncle from Myanmar about the torture experienced by my uncle Ratnum Durai:

ON 22 JANUARY  1944 BY

Q:        Do you have any information concerning the death of one RATNAM DURAI at the New Law Courts Building, Rangoon, Burma? If so, please state what you know of your own knowledge concerning the incident?
Capt. Maloney: When I was placed in the New Law Courts Building, RATNUM DURAI was already confined in a cell adjacent to the one to which I was assigned, and was moved to my cell in about 10 days. On nearly every day for several weeks after I arrived, one or more interrogators, usually the interpreters, would come to the cell and ask him questions. I understood from the questions that they were seeking information as to the radio frequencies and codes he used as an agent for the United States intelligence, where he was trained, and the names of other natives trained with him. The interrogators would frequently beat him with a heavy club or rubber hose while in the cell. At other times he would be taken from the cell and be gone for a period of from a few hours to 2 days. When he was returned to his cell his body would show evidence of very severe beating, and frequently he had been so badly mistreated that he could not walk. About half the time he was given nothing to eat and did not recover. He died in January 1944, about 6 weeks after I arrived. He had no diseases or injury, except from apparent beatings, when I first arrived.

Q: State what was told to you concerning this mistreatment and of the background of RATNUM DURAI?
Capt. Maloney: I was told that DURAI was a Hindu and a citizen of Burma, but had been trained by the United States Intelligence and dropped from a plane behind the Japanese lines in Burma as an agent; that he was captured during the latter part of November 1943 and immediately brought to the New Law Courts Building.
DURAI told me that he was always beaten when he was taken from his cell for interrogation and that on several occasions he was hung by his feet from the ceiling of the interrogation room, so that his head was barely above the floor, and that water was then poured in his nose.

Q: Can you give any information as to those responsible for the mistreatment resulting in the death of RATNUM DUARI?
Capt. Maloney: There was one Japanese interpreter who was on the case continuously and gave many of the beatings. He was about 25 years old, about 5’5” tall and could speak good English. He said he knew a little about boxing and that he was one of the few Japanese there who wore their hair long as in Western style.
Signed : RAYMOND A.MALONEY, Captain, AC. ASN 0-726056

I read this when I feel there is nothing more I can do. By dying in custody in a global war, my uncle protected those who share in his pain from experiencing that pain. That is the way of belief. I now feel sad but not anxiety for war victims. All those who suffer deep pain in this Coronavirus war would protect all of us who feel their pain as  ours. Self-isolation at physical level helps us to focus on our commonness which protects us from particular pain.  

Sri Lankan government’s first duty is to Sri Lankans. Until the end of Coronavirus war – they have no moral right to use Sri Lankan resources to help foreigners. Quid Pro Quos have led to this pathetic situation.

The deepest mind connects to the truth in Nirvana (Nakedness) where there is no mind; Just absolute stillness of truth. As Saint Yoga Swami of Jaffna said – Summa Iru/ Be Still. 

Wednesday 25 March 2020

Gajalakshmi Paramasivam

25 March  2020

Value of Pain Sharing

Last evening I rang my granddaughters to find out how they faced the challenge of online learning. Kali said that it was difficult because they could not ‘talk to their friends’. I asked about their dinner and Kali said that mum was not home yet from work. The mother in me awakened and I said I would bring over cooked food that they could freeze and use on days like this. But later after registering again, the difficulties of those who lost their jobs, I felt I needed to stay at home and mentally share in the pain of those who lost their jobs. I needed to also not ‘cushion’ the pain for the young ones. I did not with my children and they are stronger minded for that sharing. Hence I decided not to go ahead with that ‘desire’.
This morning, I learnt about further restrictions by our PM - which meant no parties even in  in the family home. I then appreciated that  I was connected to the government’s mind. Like in many religions and one god – our interpretations would be different but the pain is One. It is the pain of Common Australian. My belief in Democracy and in Australia, connected my mind to that of fellow Australians who are led by Democracy. Mr Scott Morrison is one of them. Our partying was limited largely to family gatherings on special occasions and of late even our birthdays were celebrated ‘online’ – on the phone. My work in war torn Northern and Eastern parts of Sri Lanka was a big reason for this restructuring. Hence I identify with most of the measures by the Australian government to be appropriate as it feels that my reality has become the law. That to me was confirmation of true self-governance through which we become the citizen or the government – whoever has the deeper need at that moment.
I felt better after deciding not to leave home to take good to my grandchildren.  The discomfort was good for me as well them. There were others with much deeper pain. Through mentally including them as part of me – I share my spirit of resilience with them. Then they will learnt to live with lesser income but higher status from victims whom they lead.
Sydney Morning Herald reports as follows:
[Prime Minister Scott Morrison addressed a scaled-down House of Representatives on Monday, invoking the spirit of the Diggers. "So we summon the spirit of the Anzacs, of our Great Depression generation, of those who built the Snowy, of those who won the great peace of World War II and defended Australia," Mr Morrison said.
"For many, young and old, 2020 will be the toughest year of our lives."
Labor leader Anthony Albanese said most Australians only knew stories of war, hunger and financial strife from their grandparents.
"This is a time for national leadership, consistent messages, clear directions," he said.]

The Sri Lankan government on the other hand is not able to get the support of even its Parliamentary Opposition, leave alone that of majority People – despite the recent war experiences of the People – especially the pain of civilian victims as if it were that of the government. This is because it became the enemy instead of the senior disciplining the junior and experiencing the junior’s pain as its pain.
The deeper our pain the deeper our insight. The deeper our insight the stronger our Oneness.
I am confident that we Australians would be more cohesive after the Corona enemy attacked us indiscriminately.

Pain-sharing is the express pathway to ownership.