Thursday, September 01, 2005

From Buddhaputra to Bhoomiputra

A look at the role that the sangha play in the ethnic conflict and the peace process in Sri Lanka, and a questioning of my belief in an increasingly hostile and intolerant faith that I call Sri Lankan Buddhism.

I was born a Buddhist, into a fairly religious Buddhist family. I studied Buddhism as my religion in school. I wasn't a very religious person anyway, but I never had a problem respecting monks or going to the temple on Poya days with my Grandmother.

But then, one day, while on an assignment, I was beaten up by monks. Why? Because I was a journalist. They didn't ask me for my religion or what institution I work for. I had a camera, and that was enough for them to hit me and kick me when I was down. This came as a shock to me and I didn't fight back. I ran. But it led me to question the future of the sangha and of Buddhism in Sri Lanka, and where I stand in the spectrum.

By the next such confrontation I was over my shock. I fought back. I had lost all respect for the sangha and I had no problems throwing a punch and catching one of them squarely across the jaw, to protect myself and my footage. They would never shock me again.

According to the scriptures the 'Sangha' are the Buddhaputhra, the 'children' of the Buddha, the sons of the faith. They are the guardians of the faith, the protectors of the Dhamma. They are supposed to be teachers, mentors and guides.

But in Sri Lanka this is no longer so. The addition of the sangha to the formula of the ethnic conflict in Sri Lanka has led to a further complication of our identities. Earlier, one a very basic level, one could say the conflict was between the 'Tamils' and the 'Sinhalese'. But now these identities no longer exist in that form. There are now 'Sinhala Buddhists' and 'Tamil Hindus', and the conflict has spilled over the boundries of ethnicity. It is the sangha in Sri Lanka who are to blame for this.

I put the rise of the most brutal form of Sinhala nationalism to the creation of the Sinhala Veera Vidhana (SVV). This association of Colombo based Sinhala traders who sought to use ethnic sensitivities to put a dent in the profits of their Tamil and Muslim counterparts, was even at its very inception inextricably intertwined with the radical nationalist Sangha in Colombo who had been seeking for an outlet to express their political opinions. As they marched up and down the streets of Colombo asking the people not to patronise Tamil and Muslims shops, the traders of the SVV rallied the monks behind them to gain legitimacy among the Sinhala people.

'We are the Aarakshaka Devathavas (guardian angels) of this island and of the Sinhala people' says Maduluwawe Sobitha, and a new identity, the Sinhala Buddhist is born. One is no longer able to be a Sinhala Hindu or a Tamil Buddhist. This new ideology states that only Sinhala Buddhists have any right to call this island their homeland and scores of monks, heads filled with dreams of what this new-found political ideology can bring them, rally behind it.

But thier causes are purely selfish. In a society swiftly moving away from religion and from the constant patronage that the monks depend upon for their lavish lifestyles, they are afraid that soon they will have to resort to walking from house to house with a bowl as the Buddha did. They will no longer be able to sit in their temples like Vito Corleone and demand money and tribute from the faithful as an experssion of their belief. This attitude had begun to eat away at the core of Sri Lankan Buddhism long before they joined Hate-Mongers Inc. To bring the faithful back to the temples and to keep themselves and their sexually-abused temple-boys fed they needed something to revive the faith. Something with which to embed Buddhism so deeply in an institution that it would keep them alive and living like kings for generations.

The time was ripe for the birth of the Sinhala Buddhist identity, and it was born.

The Buddha never dappled in statecraft. Matters of kings and nations were of no consequence to him. His followers who saw the sense behind this fought hard to divorce the philosophy from the state, so that no one state or no one king may lay claim to it as their own. Buddhism, fundamentally, cannot be married to a state, or to governance. Even in the time of the Buddha it was the 'other' personified into the character Devadatta who constantly sought state patronage. This was one of the fundamental differences between the followers of the Buddha and the followers of Devadatta.

Unlike in many other religions, where there are clear cut guidelines for the governance of a people, Buddhism does not set guidelines for nations, governments or even communities, but for individuals. This is the undeniable form of the Dhamma. Any old upasaka will tell you that the philosophy is not to be followed by people, but by a person.

The identification of the philosophy of the Buddha as something belonging only to the Sinhala people, was the greatest perversion of one of the greatest philosophies the world has ever seen. An unprecedented crime against humanity.

It has been many years now and the Sinhala Buddhist ideology has turned many from Buddhaputhras to Bhoomiputras, sons of the soil. Athuruliye Rathna, Uduwe Dhammaloka, Alle Gunawansa and even Gangodawila Soma echo(ed) the very same idea.

These monks frequently resort to violence and abuse to get closer to their aims and they openly advocate a return to war. I don't need to explain why I see this as being fundamentally contradictory to the very core teachings of the Buddha. The Sinhala half of the identity has overpowerd the Buddhist half and has taken away from the monks and their 'Buddhist' followers the ability to understand even the most simple principles of the Dhamma.

Almost all other religions and faiths have long histories of wars against each other, and have examples with which to justify the violent expression and protection of their own. Buddhist history, very strangely, lacks of bloodbaths and great wars by those who sought to protect it from the infidel. The only real mention of a great war in Buddhist history is the one that inspired the Chandashoka-Dharmashoka transformation!

It is no longer possible for me to call myself a Buddhist in Sri Lanka. I hated the sangha, and by extension, the Buddha and Dhamma.

But there is still hope. My recent trip to Leh brought me into contact with another form of Buddhism. The same philosophy, put into practice by a different people, with a very very different result.

Let's look at who these people are. In Ladakh, the district of which Leh is the capital , a vast majortiy of the people are of Tibetan origin. They come from a country that no longer exists. Having lost their homeland to the Chinese, these Tibetan Buddhists have only their faith. Yet they abstain from ANY insurgent activity, or anything that could be remotely associated with violence. The most violent expression I have ever seen by a Tibetan is a poster saying 'CHINA! GET OUT OF TIBET!'

At present, they have as the leader of their people the Dalai Lama, unelected, but loved and respected by each and every one of them. But he does not resort to statecraft. He does travel the world speaking of the Tibetan cause and attempting to apply pressure on Chine to let them have thier homes back, but he does not resort to the corrupt, conniving statecraft that we see the monks in Sri Lanka gleefully taking part in.

They are Tibetan Buddhists. Again and ethnic and religious identity tagged together, but their priorities are different from the Sinhala Buddhist. For them being the Buddhaputra comes first. And I mean this not only of the monks, but of the entire Tibetan people in Ladakh. Each one of them, from the man who sells vegetables in the market to the police officer who watches the streets, is more a Buddhaputra than the very Mahanayakes of the Malwathu and Asgiri temples in Kandy.

I was deeply ashamed of Sri Lankan Buddhism. I did not have the courage to tell anyone that I come from Sri Lanka, because many of these people know of Sri Lanka only as another Buddhist country, where they assume the philosophy is followed in the same way it is followed in Ladakh. I would have been forced to burst their bubble and explain to them the nature of the rot in the faith in Sri Lanka and that would have been a rather depressing experience both for them and for me.

In at present the Buddhists of Ladakh are threatened by outside forces. The Indian Army build Shiv Mandirs and the Muslims of Kashmir build mosques and madrassas. But they remain tolerant, because that is what they must do in order to seek Nirvana. They do not burn Hindu and Muslim places of worship, and they do not loot Hindu and Muslim homes when they feel threatened, but neither do they blindly convert. In a playing field where the other kids are fighting for space they sit quietly in a corner and play their own game by themselves and smile to themselves at the absurdity of it all.

For the Buddhists of Ladakh, tolerance is not something they hear about in a monthly poya day sermon from the monk at the temple, it something that each single individual pratices each day of their lives. They live and breathe the philosophy. But they do not follow it as a mob, as Sri Lankans do. For them it is a deeply individual experience.

Leh made me think. I'm still thinking, trying to understand the very nature of my beliefs. I do not yet consider myself a Buddhist, but a little seed of the faith that remained inside seems to have begun to grow. Now I have an idea, albeit minute, of what is possible. How and when still remain questions.

All Sri Lankan Buddhists, I beg of you. Go to Ladakh, and try to understand thew difference between the Bhoomiputra and Buddhaputra.

***

NOTE ON TOOTHACHE: Coming to the issue of relics, Buddhism has never been about the worship of relics. If those who follow this corrupted perverted form of the great philospohy want to prostrate themselves before something that doesn't really exist, then go ahead. But do not expect me to respect your perversion of something I hold to be sacred, which is the Dhamma.

Your monks pissed on my Dhamma and perverted it beyond recognistion, so I'm going to piss on your tooth! Somewhere in a bottle I have a tooth I had pulled when I was about 14. I'm going to make a little karanduwa for it and put it on my head and walk around town. If you want you can fall on your feet and worship it. If you're really lucky I'll let you see it, which is more than they let you do at the Dalada Maligawa.

The bombing of the Dalada Maligawe angered me because of the damage done to the precious artwork, which is undeiably of great value. The LTTE couldn't blow the tooth up BECAUSE IT ISN'T THERE!!!! If you want to worship a tooth come worship mine, at least it's REALLY THERE!!!

The worship of relics is a perversion of Buddhism and I don't like it. Deal with it.

Like Fox Mulder says 'The TOOTH is out there!'

Comments:
 
Wow. So much hate and anger.

I guess it was a mistake to assume that you would be decent enough to edit your comments about the sacred tooth relic or offer an apology. Now you have gone further and say that you "piss" on it. Are you really serious? Would you also "piss" on the Turin Shroud? Or the stone at the Kaaba? Or the trident of God Kataragama? Goes to show what kind of a depraved mentality you have Morquendi, seriously.

To be honest I am certainly very glad that you do not consider yourself to be Buddhist. You may hate the Buddha, Dhamma and the Sangha but that doesn't mean you have any right to abuse and degrade any religious practice in the way that you have. Before talking about human rights, you might want to start acting humanely first.

I'm pretty sure you would never say such a thing in front of a Buddhist gathering, and I get the feeling much of your writings are written with "shock factors" merely to anger and rouse people.

Why don't you tell the good people of Ladakh that you would like "piss" on a tooth that people believe to be that of the Buddha's and see what they have to say about it? I don't think they would be impressed at all.

And would you mind explaining what "original Buddhism" is because no one really has a clue. Even the Theravada tradition which is considered to be oldest tradition was formed many many years after the Buddha's passing. If we don't know for certain what the "original" teachings are, how can any Buddhist tradition (or practice) be called a "perversion"?

Moreover, one of the main reasons that Buddhism spread without any violence and tension was because it was open to different religious traditions and methods of worship. This is why you see so many varieties of Buddhism in the world today. In Sri Lanka, tree worship was co-opted, and later Hindu gods and goddesses as well as certain Hindu practices were added to the popular religion. I personally don' t think it is a "perversion" at all. It is rather funny how you (a non-Buddhist) thinks otherwise.

Here are some links to show you that relic worship/veneration is also a part of Tibetan Buddhism:

The Benefits of Seeing the Relics
http://www.maitreyaproject.org/en/relic_benefits.html

Heart Shrine Relic Tour
http://www.maitreyaproject.org/en/relic.html

Sacred Buddhist relics
http://www.buddhistchannel.tv/index.php?id=00000000005,00000000949,0,0,1,0

So now, is this a "perversion of the dhamma" as well? And you don't respect it either?

Finally, you like to talk about the "hate" of other people, but have you stopped to examine what is coming out of your mind and mouth? Your writings seem to be infused with a large amount of hatred, ill will and anger.

As such, wouldn't it be best to treat yourself before preaching to others?

For from not being a member of "Hate-Mongers Inc" you seem to be both founder and president.

Maybe one day you will see the error in your ways. One would have thought a 24 year old to be far more mature.
 
As an addendum I refer to your comment "If you want to worship a tooth come worship mine, at least it's REALLY THERE!!!"

Clearly you mean to be both sarcastic and caustic here. I'm just wondering whether you also apply the same "logic" to God, Allah and the various Hindu Gods and Goddesses.

Do you also look down and scorn people who worship them and who have never seen or heard them?

And, are you going to "piss" on them as well?
 
I came to Buddhism when I was older and meditation makes my life tangibly better, yet Sri Lankan Buddhism hurts me more than anything.

When I was young I used to trust monks, but now I'm wary of all of them - at the expense of the good ones. Too many ride around in Pajeros, keep women, take money, and play politics. Too few meditate.

Rather than being a force for Buddhist values they are too often a force for Sinhala racism. Harsh Speech, advocating killing, and breaking the precepts right and left.

That said, there are a great many good monks and I'm glad that Buddhism has been preserved as it makes my life better.
 
That was very well written Morq. You have made some extremely important points.

The Dalai Lama is a tremendously well respected leader around the World. I think that it would be right to say that even the Chinese communist government respects him. It is indeed unfortunate that the "TOOTH" site was bombed & yes the culture of revenge is something that one hopes will soon be over. As you know there has been an enormous devastation wrecked on the places of worship of Hindus.

Also "an eye for an eye & a tooth for a tooth" is very much an entrenched Asian, Indian, Sri Lankan way of life. "Turn the other cheek & love thine enemy" is a belief system that has only been around in the last 2000 years.

It is in my opinion - the best belief system & Bhuddha too represented this message.

Bhudda like St Francis of Asisi came from a very affluent background. Hence he understood the necessity to walk away from worldly goods & the desire to rule other men with power.

Far more rewarding to win the respect and love of your fellow man by showing them compassion & forgiveness.

By the way - I do hope that "an observer" knows that the Shroud of Turin has been proven to be a fake ,,, not the best example there. There was a very detailed investigation done into it - carbon dating which was then portrayed in a documentary.

This would not have been possible if the Catholic church had not allowed the investigation. Personally, I was very disappointed at the outcome - but one must keep an open mind & learn to accept facts.

Errr & by the way - my faith & spiritual beliefs are very widespread. I believe I'm even being called a Shaman these days - ah well happy to be a Shaman - just not a GOOSE!

As I have said to IVAP - I am very gravely concerned about the welfare of those poor young boys that are given over to be raised by monks. Can anyone tell me the number of boys under the age of 18 that are in the monastic system? Can you imagine how difficult it is, given the power these monks have for these children to speak out about the mistreatment that they receive. Someone else needs to speak for them - I think Morq & IVAP will have to carry this message forward. Can you tell me if they are ever rescued from the monks?

Indi - you say that monks are now keeping women & actively seeking out material goods - surely other people around them can see this? Why do the Sinhala people not rise up against these sorts of things - the child abuse included.

Are monks ever charged for abuse, criminal activity, fraud or murder?

Honestly - we spend so much of time fighting with each other that right under our noses the very basic pillars of our community are in disaray. If ever we are able to have peace, we are going to have to fix so many things up...
 
morquendi makes some unfounded and unnecessary assumptions here, and ruins a perfectly good argument.

1.'Unlike in many other religions, where there are clear cut guidelines for the governance of a people' where?
2.'one of the greatest philosophies the world has ever seen' buddhism is a irrational religion not a rational philosophy but morquendi is not alone in this basic error.
3.'Buddhist history, very strangely, lacks of bloodbaths' you know that there was a great king called mahasen who burnt down the mahavihara right?
4.'they abstain from ANY insurgent activity' wrong! there are violent tibetan groups.
5.'he does not resort to the corrupt, conniving statecraft' ha? what kind of sunglasses did you use?

wrong facts -> zero credibility
 
Morquendi:
You have made a fascinating point, indeed one that does ring quite true in most part, given the current situation in the country.

However, I'd like to point out that you have on many previous occassions mentioned that there is hardly even any clear border between the black and white - particularly with your post on "Misinformation". Viewed in this light, your post does paint (it would seem) all buddhist monks in Sri Lanka with the same tarred brush.

Your celebrity garnered during the tsunami disaster has probably made your blog one of the most widely read Sri Lankan blogs. Therefore, as they say - "Wagakeemen katha karanna" - communicate your point responsibly.

You have failed to mention any of the monks in Sri Lanka who are actively promoting the personal experience of buddhism, which I agree is what's needed, as opposed to Mob activity.

The monks you mention are truly those with political ambition, which makes their "saddha" suspect.

Yet there is no mention of the likes of Kiribathgoda Gnanissara, who promote an intelligent and mindful approach to life through buddhism - the same approach practised by the people of Ladakh.

The label projected on every monk in Sri Lanka from your post is very unfair. It's akin to labelling every Tamil a Tiger and every Sinhalese a chauvanist. A very Black/White distinction.

I suggest you re-read your own thoughts on "Misinformation".

While I agree that many monks in Sri Lanka today are of the manner in which you describe, I must point out that you have left out an important qualifying statement with regard to the buddhist monks in Sri Lanka who carry on the teachings of Gautama as the individual experience it was meant to be.


sittingnut:
I'm very interested by the points you have made.

buddhism is a[sic] irrational religion not a rational philosophy but morquendi is not alone in this basic error.

This in particular fascinates me. As someone who seems to be very interested in credibility, could you kindly give some credibility to this sweeping statement - possibly by elaborating on the logic behind it? I eagerly await your definitions of "irrational religion" and "rational philosophy", not to mention the basis for your casual disregard for Buddhism.
 
Mr/Mrs Morquendi I prefer to say that you are having a mentally disorder. First you go and treat for it rather than commenting the things that you dont know exactly. If you learned Buddhism, do you have at least a single knowledge about the core facts of Buddhism. I am very glad to hear that you do not consider yourself as a Buddhist.

Further more hiding your identity and posting Bloggs such as like this can be done by anyone. Without knowing the exact fact and the deep understanding about the Buddhism, I would suggest to keep your mouth shut. When you open your mouth you are streaming shits rather than words.

I would like to have an open debate with you regarding this issue. Drop me a mail to the following address and we will have a public debate.

Gemunu Deshapriya
Anguruwathota Road,
Horana
 
I mentioned in a post on Ian's blog that reality is subjective to the system of belief that we have been brought up on.

I find Morq's statements true on many counts - and certainly have gained more of an insight into his perspective on issues.

As for sittingnut, I find your opinions almost evangelical - are you an evangelist? You give the impression of someone who is profoundly convinced in what he believes - to the detriment of tolerating other peoples' opinions.

How can you be a libertarian and dismiss the views of another people or degrade their beliefs?
 
Ashanthi - let's get a few things straight.

The child monks are not, I *repeat* not, forcefully recruited or retained. They are usually given up due to the dire economic circumstances faced by their parents with the expectation that the child would have a better life in a monastery. The children are free to leave the priesthood or to visit their parent at any time.

I object to any form of unnecessary separation of children from their parents. While I object to both, I also see a significant moral difference between

A) Children being ordained into the monkhood, with the consent of their parents, where they are expected learn and preach the non-violent messages of Buddhism (not nationalism)

As opposed to

B) Forcefully stealing children from their parents and indoctrinating them into an army where the aim is to hate and kill (read LTTE, Nepalese Maoists, etc).

If a religion has to rely on this method of recruitment then it has a real problem with its message.

If a liberation struggle can't attract people to join their cause then you have to question significance / validity of their cause.

Furthermore, I consider the abuse of children (particularly with parental consent) to be a much more heinous crime than the above two.
 
Dear Mr. Moraquendi,

PLEASE CALM DOWN. YOU WILL BURST A BLOOD VESSEL IN YOU BRAIN IF YOU SPIT HATE AND ANGER LIKE THIS.

YOU WANT TO PISS ON THE MOST SACRED TOOTH RELIC? WELL I REALLY PITY YOU MR. MORQUENDI. WHAT LOW DEPTHS YOU HAVE FALLEN TO. MAY YOU BE WELL MR. MOREQUENDI, CURED OF YOUR HATRED.

HOWEVER IF I MAY SAY, IF YOU TRIED TO PISS ON (ALSO SUCH PISSING IS A HABIT OF WILD ANIMALS, BUT THEY DO IT TO MARK THEIR TERRITORIES) THE HOLY SHROUD, THE HOLY KURAN OR THE SHIVALINGAM YOU MAY FIND YOURSELF WITH AN IMPORTANT APPENDAGE MISSING. WE AS BUDDHISTS WILL FORGIVE YOU AND PITY YOU INSTEAD, SO THAT YOU MAY PASS WATER WITHOUT ANY DIFFICULTY WHATSOEVER AND BE WELL AND HEALTHY.

MAY YOU ATTAIN NIBBANA.
 
Replies:

An Observer, no I will not piss o the Turin shroud (fake or not) or any other relic. Those relics are important to the people of those religions and those religions incorporate the worship of relics. Buddhism has never been about worshiping relics. Buddhism in fact is not about worship at all, but about living the Dhamma. It is not something you once a month it's supposed to be something you practice in your day to day life. I suggest you do a bit of reading about the philosophy before we continue this discussion. It would much easier if you understood the fundamental nature of the philosophy.

Stingnut,
1.'Unlike in many other religions, where there are clear cut guidelines for the governance of a people' where?
Islam has clear guidelines for governance. Buddhism also has 10 principles (Dasarajadharma)for a ruler but that is argued to be a false preaching, and it's attribution to the Buddha is contested.

2.'one of the greatest philosophies the world has ever seen' buddhism is a irrational religion not a rational philosophy but morquendi is not alone in this basic error.
This is a matter of opinion. You have yours. I have mine. But I would like you to take this statement a little further and explain to me why you believe this to be true. Sometimes I think Buddhism is like Communism, just a little too perfect and impractical as long as basic human nature doesn't change. Again, this is arguable.

3.'Buddhist history, very strangely, lacks of bloodbaths' you know that there was a great king called mahasen who burnt down the mahavihara right?
By bloodbaths I meant something on the scale of the crusades. And i meant something done in the name of the religion. Mahasen's burning of the Mahavihara was not done in the name of the religion. Why would anyone burn down places of religious worship in the name of that religion? I suggest you check the history books and try to understand the political motives behind Mahasen's moves during that period. The burning of the Mahavihara's cannot be looked at divorced from the [political situation in Rajarata kingdom at that point.

4.'they abstain from ANY insurgent activity' wrong! there are violent tibetan groups.
I meant Tibetan Buddhists in Ladakh. There are a handful of underground anti-China groups working inside Tibet but these do not respect the control of the Dalai Lama and are infact outcasts.

5.'he does not resort to the corrupt, conniving statecraft' ha? what kind of sunglasses did you use?
To answer your question, the RayBans Predator 2. Again, I would like to explain what you are trying to say. Do you say that the Dalai Lama is a corrupt statesman? Or do you just want to know about my preferences in shades?

masterofpuppets, I agree. There are many monks in Sri Lanka who do what the people expect of them. But their work is overshadowed by the acts of a few who tarnish the image of Sri Lanka, of Buddhists and of Buddhism. If you look at the constituencies of the 9 monks who were elected to Parliament through the JHU you will notice that it is primarily urban. Colombo, Kesbewa, Gampaha etc... I believe that this is because the urban populace is moving away from the religion and they believe that by sending monks to parliament they can redeem themselves. The rural population did not vote for the monks (though there was heacvy canvassing and the JHU tried to use the network of temples to take their message to the villages) because they have a much clearer understanding of Buddhism and what they expect of the monk in their temple.

Dear Mr Deshapriya, no need to get so angry. Just Google to find out who Morquendi is. My identity is not hidden at all. You one of those guys who follow Athuruliye around waving your flag?
 
Mr. Moraquendi,

I AM SORRY, MAY BE I MISUNDERSTOOD YOU. MAY I GATHER THAT YOU ARE A TRUE FOLLOW OF THE BUDDHIST PHILOSOPHY? YES IT DOES NOT "ENCOURAGE" AAMISA POOJA.

SO YOU WOULD GO ON YOUR WAY TO OBTAIN ARHATHHOOD BUT WILL PISS ON THE SACRED TRUTH RELIC, EVERY BUDDHA STATUE, AND EVEN THE BUDDHA HIMSELF?

I AM NOT SURE THAT YOU WILL ATTAIN NIBBANA THAT WAY Mr. Morquendi.

MAY YOU BE WELL.
 
masterofpuppets, kevin, morquendi:
2. buddhism is an irrational religion not a rational philosophy but morquendi is not alone in this basic error.
i really can't see why you have trouble with above statement this is old hat. to explain,
all religions are irrational, they provide people an escape from admitting the reality (that there is nothing after death, that there is no objective way to differentiate good from the bad. etc) by using supernatural beliefs that do not stand up to rational examination. in some religions its god, in buddhism its karmic principle.

kevin:
i am not a evangelist or for that matter a christian.
being a libertarian doesn't mean one has to agree with other peoples views rather one respects their right to express their views.
anyway if i give a different 'impression', my apologies.

morquendi:
1.'Unlike in many other religions, where there are clear cut guidelines for the governance of a people' where?
Islam has clear guidelines for governance. Buddhism also has 10 principles (Dasarajadharma)for a ruler but that is argued to be a false preaching, and it's attribution to the Buddha is contested.

is there a need for me add anything more - your own omissions and admissions are enough.

2. see above.

3.'Buddhist history, very strangely, lacks of bloodbaths' ....
Mahasen's burning of the Mahavihara was not done in the name of the religion. Why would anyone burn down places of religious worship in the name of that religion?
in fact it was done on the advice of a sort of a local mahayana sect and there were reprisals later. that's why mahasen is mentioned derogatorily in mahavansa written by mahavihara monks in spite of he being the king most responsible for the great irrigation system and numerous other great public works. this sort of thing was not limited to mahasen either.
the burning of the mahavihara cannot be looked at divorced from the political situation - maybe so, but so does all the other bloodlettings and religious prosecutions around the world.
in other words, buddhist history is not a exception when it comes to tolerance.

4.'they abstain from ANY insurgent activity' ....
I meant Tibetan Buddhists in Ladakh. There are a handful of underground anti-China groups working inside Tibet but these do not respect the control of the Dalai Lama and are infact outcasts.

sure, if you say so . these people must be so advanced that they will cast out their own relatives than be even 'remotely associated with violence' we should truly admire them. huh?

5.'he does not resort to the corrupt, conniving statecraft' ha? what kind of sunglasses did you use?.
To answer your question, the RayBans Predator 2
- i am sure we are grateful for that much awaited information. does fellow celebrity brittany wear the same brand?
Do you say that the Dalai Lama is a corrupt statesman? no, he is just another corrupt conniving politician playing hot and cold games with chinese authorities using various boy lamas.
 
Piyasena - Enough wih the capitals. Can you please stop using the Shift key or Caps Lock. It makes it harder to read your posts.
 
So let me get this straight Morquendi, you will not "piss" on the Turin shroud or any other relic because those relics are important to the people of those religions and those religions supposedly incorporate the worship of relics, but you will "piss" on the tooth relic because somehow - according to you - it's "not important" to followers of Buddhism? Are you serious? Are you aware of how important the Tooth Relic has been/is to Buddhists in Sri Lanka; it has a history spanning thousands of years. Please do not feign igorance on this account. It seems to me that you simply like to hate what Buddhists hold sacred in Sri Lanka, but won't dare apply the same rules to followers of other religious traditions. In other words, you just want to arouse the feelings of any Sri Lankan Buddhists reading your write-up.

Could you please explain to me where exactly in the Bible or elsewhere does Christianity incorporate worship of relics? In fact it could be seen as a form of idol worship which is not looked upon kindly. I know Catholics are often criticized by evangelical Christians because of their veneration for relics but Christianity is big and broad enough to accept all these various practices. It's just too bad you can't see the same in Buddhism. And where exactly can I see the trident of God Kataragama in Kataragama, a shrine held sacred by both Sri Lankan Hindus and Buddhists? Because hey (to use your own sweet words), since apparently it's a "fuckin fake" and devotees go to the extent of walking on coals, and piercing their skin in veneration why not "piss" on it and degrade and ridule that religious tradition it the lowest of possible ways? This Morquendi train-of-thought is so tolerant, decent and broadminded isn't it? It sure would make the Buddha, Jesus, Mohammed and Ishwar proud.

I have this feeling that you know that you are wrong on this account but won't own up to it either because your ego is standing in way, or because you feel apologising for your disgusting comments will in someway "lessen" your character and undermine your sense of self-rigteousness. I can only hope that your ignorance and hatred for Buddhist/Asian practices in Sri Lanka and elsewhere will be dispelled one day. For someone who seems to enjoy travelling the world and meeting people of various religions and cultures you seem to be incredibly narrow minded and bigoted.

Whether you like to accept it or not, relics are important to Buddhists and Buddhism incorporates the worship of relics. You are very unfortunately trying to act like a puritanical religious fundamentalist - the very antithesis of Buddhism - in claiming that "real/original" Buddhism (whatever that is - apparently you know what it is?) does not incorporate relic worship and then going on to degrade in the most depraved way what millions of Sri Lankan Buddhists hold sacred. Even the Buddha himself permitted various rituals that do no harm - like offering of flowers & lamps but disencouraged other modes of "veneration" like animal sacrifice which were widely followed in India at his time. Your beliefs/attitudes seem to stem from hate rather than from genuine understanding of Buddhist teachings.

I have moved with Buddhists who follow various different Buddhist traditions and I can personally let you know that Tibetan Buddhists do venerate Buddhist relics - not only those of the Buddha but of respected lamas as well. If you would be kind enough to step outside of your "I'm right and everyone else is wrong" box, you will not only find ethnic Tibetans doing that but western converts as well. So now what, are you doing to curse and degrade what Tibetan Buddhists hold sacred as well? The Dalai Lama himself has mentioned that he would dearly love to visit the Dalada Maligawa and pay his respects to the Tooth Relic (but the Sri Lankan government won't provide him with a visa because of its relationship with China). Now will you be "brave" enough to tell the Dalai Lama to his face that you "piss" on the Tooth Relic of the Buddha? Somehow I think not.

Now I would like to provide you with Buddhist texts from the Pali Tipitaka to show you that the Buddha permitted relic veneration:

"There are four persons, Ananda, who are worthy of a stupa. Who are those four? A Tathagata, an Arahant, a Fully Enlightened One is worthy of a stupa; so also is a Paccekabuddha, and a disciple of a Tathagata, and a universal monarch.

And why, Ananda, is a Tathagata, an Arahant, a Fully Enlightened One worthy of a stupa? Because, Ananda, at the thought: 'This is the stupa of that Blessed One, Arahant, Fully Enlightened One!' the hearts of many people will be calmed and made happy; and so calmed and with their minds established in faith therein, at the breaking up of the body, after death, they will be reborn in a realm of heavenly happiness. And so also at the thought: 'This is the stupa of that Paccekabuddha!' or 'This is the stupa of a disciple of that Tathagata, Arahant, Fully Enlightened One!' or 'This is the stupa of that righteous monarch who ruled according to Dhamma!' — the hearts of many people are calmed and made happy; and so calmed and with their minds established in faith therein, at the breaking up of the body, after death, they will be reborn in a realm of heavenly happiness. And it is because of this, Ananda, that these four persons are worthy of a stupa."

---- Maha Parinibbana Sutta

"When the Tathagata had set forth on pilgrimage, for the purpose of gathering in those who were ripe for conversion, the citizens of Savatthi proceeded to Jetavana, their hands full of garlands and fragrant wreaths, and finding no other place to show their reverence, laid them by the gateway of the perfumed chamber and went off. This caused great rejoicing. But Anathapindika got to hear of it; and on the return of the Tathagata visited Elder Ananda and said to him, "This monastery, Sir, is left unprovided while the Tathagata goes on pilgrimage, and there is no place for the people to do reverence by offering fragrant wreaths and garlands. Will you be so kind Sir, as to tell the Tathagata of this matter, and learn from him whether or not it is possible to find a place for this purpose?"

The other, nothing loath, did so, asking, "How many shrines are there?"

"Three, Ananda."

"Which are they?"

"Shrines for a relic of the body, a relic of use or wear, a relic of memorial."

"Can a shrine be made, Sir, during your life?"

"No, Ananda, not a body-shrine; that kind is made when a Buddha enters Nirvana. A shrine of memorial is improper because the connection depends on the imagination only. But the great bo-tree used by the Buddhas is fit for a shrine, be they alive or be they dead."

"Sir, while you are away on pilgrimage the great monastery of Jetavana is unprotected, and the people have no place where they can show their reverence. Shall I plant a seed of the great bo-tree before the gateway of Jetavana?"

"By all means so do, Ananda, and that shall be as it were an abiding place for me."

---- The Kalinga-Bodhi Jataka


Now why is it that you - a self-proclaimed non Buddhist - are preaching to me (and others) about the Buddha Dhamma and what is "right" and "wrong" and what "is Buddhism" and "not Buddhism"? Does it not strike you as being very self-righteous and egoistic?

Perhaps it is time you put what you preach into practice yourself and "live the Dhamma" instead of pretending/claiming to know it inside and out and then going onto degrade and devalue Buddhists and Buddhist practices in the most disgusting way. Does it make you feel better as a person to do such a thing? Honest question. If it does, you certainly need to heal yourself before teaching others how to practice religion. I think that you must certainly follow a religion of your own making because I am sure no practicing Christian, Muslim or Hindu would make or condone such lowly comments such as yours.

I think that if the Buddha were around today he would call you a person who is like "An individual like an inscription in rock." It certainly appears to be the sort of person you are:

================================

"Monks, there are these three types of individuals to be found existing in the world. Which three? An individual like an inscription in rock, an individual like an inscription in soil, and an individual like an inscription in water.

"And how is an individual like an inscription in rock? There is the case where a certain individual is often angered, and his anger stays with him a long time. Just as an inscription in rock is not quickly effaced by wind or water and lasts a long time, in the same way a certain individual is often angered, and his anger stays with him a long time. This is called an individual like an inscription in rock."

http://www.accesstoinsight.org/canon/sutta/anguttara/an03-130.html

=================================

Learn to let go, instead of holding on so tightly to that raging torrent of hatred and ill-will that seems to have found refuge inside your heart.
 
It is rarely indeed that I descend from my lofty perch to comment on such blogs as these, but there are a handful of eclectic points that I feel compelled to make.

First, to Morquendi. Hats off. Excellent post. So full of anger and hatred. I agree wholeheartedly. Buddhism in Sri Lanka has been hijacked by the cult of Soma and his rabid followers; especially the monks who act like monkeys in parliament. I hope all of them get kicked in the nuts like that one bugger did.

Where do these monkeys get off, sanctimoniously pretending to be the guardians of Buddhism when they keep pissing on the religion? The Buddha was an enlightened leader (note the lack of a capital E) who preached a religion of unity and equality in a caste-ridden society. What these robed jingoists try to do is precisely the opposite. Piyasena may be a good little Buddhist, but even he must realize that Morquendi and I insult the sangha as a consequence of their actions? Isn't that a key part of Buddhism anyway--paticcasamuppada or something? Mind you, as Sittingnut says, Buddhism has been politicised for quite a while now...

As for Ashanthi. You really don't know what you're talking about, do you? True, the Turin is most likely a fake. True, turn the other cheek is one of old pal Jesus's catch phrases. "Love thine enemy", however, is an entrenched part of old-school Buddhism. Meitri and all that, you know. A teensy bit older than 2000 years, my dear. As for Buddha and St. Francis – excuse me? Are you saying people from very affluent backgrounds 'understand' the value of walking away from money? Makes you wonder why there are so many rich people around. Finally, to read Ashanthi's post, you'd think apprentice monks were snatched from the cradle, swaddled in a robe, and fucked in the ass all in one go.

I doubt things are that bad with the apprentice-hood. I happen to know several quite nice, well adjusted, young Sangha. Really. They're nice kids. They haven't yet been infected by the inferiority complex their elder bretheren possess. I shudder to think what'll become of them when they enter university though. Recently one monk was hospitalized after being ragged by other monks at Rajarata university. Way to go, eh Gamunu? I really must mail you a stink bomb one of these days... Never post your home address on a web page, you silly boy!

There is more I want to write to the observer (insufferable goody two-shoes that he/she seems to be), to Sittingnut (whom I agree with, as far as atheism and the politicization of Buddhism is concerned), and to our piss obsessed Piyasena, but this is long enough already. I know many of you will hate this post, and hate its writer. I doubt I’ll come this way again, but if you do want to flame me, bring it on, biatches! Perhaps I’ll even respond, someday.
 
Hey there IVAP - yes of course the kids are allowed to have contact with their parents, let it not be said that child molestors don't actively gain parental complacency! Let's not throw the baby out with the bath water. As Morq has said - there are good monks and bad monks. However, the role of the monk in our society is far more influential than in other societies. And what do you say about their accountability given the political status they have been adorned with so that corrupt conviving politicians can win elections?

Regarding that other burning issue - "the recruitment of young children to join the LTTE". Of course - given all the constant publicity & press this issue gets you can rest assured that I am well aware of it. It's a daily feature in the Sinhala press - as you well know.

Furthmore IVAP, I 'm not going to run away from reality. I am sorry for the trauma caused to parents and of I insist that wrongs be righted - regardless of any mitigating circumstances. You also know full well IVAP that attempts are being made to do this. It's an issue constantly being used to beat the LTTE over the head - just as the killing of Lux Kadi will be.

However, it does not change the fact that I want a seperate state, that I believe Tamil people in SL should be left alone to go about their affairs in peace & safety & free from hatred (& boy have we seen some spilling out all over this blog) denegration & persecution.

Before we can right the wrongs and move towards documenting, acknowledging, compensating & saying sorry for injustices - first we need peace.

But we seem to fight & bicker about everything - every bloody thing. Now, there is a competition going on about who knows Buddhism the best!

A few comparisions I make & someone has to write a comment on it. If I say Buddha was similar to St Francis of Asissi then am I saying that all rich people understand the valule of not being tied down to material wealth????? What a load of crap. As for the "love thine enemy" quip - I specifically said that this was another commonality between Christianity & Buddhism. I mean really - then this is followed by some arrogant speel about how lucky we are going to be to get another comment from Mr "discombo ...." .

Again - there is so much of energy being spent splitting hairs & one-up-manship that nothing ever moves forward. Now what would Budhha say about that?!

I also detect some thinly veiled threats being sent Morquendi's way. I note Duggi has not returned to this Blog. This is the culture of bullying & fear that Sri Lankans live in.

When "Mr Deshapriya" calls for a public debate - you sort of wonder - well who is this guy really? Has anyone heard of him? He's actually calling for a public brawl from his tone - again that's what it's all about isn't it - who's got more thugs on his payroll & let's have a big punch-up.

Morq - there are enough dead journalists around - I DO NOT want to wake up one day only to read this Blog with a headline that goes - "TSUNAMI JOURNALIST SHOT DEAD BY TIGERS OUTSIDE TOWN HALL IN HORANA".

These things worry me very much - I have lost so many friends and family to the violence in Sri Lanka. From the comments I read here I see how mindless it is.

If you watch the slow horror that is unfolding in New Orleans you see that the greatest cause of urban violence is poverty & neglect by consecutive governments. People get angry & fed-up so they take matters into their own hands. We have a similar situation in Sri Lanka. There is definitely a different set of values between people in the cities/towns & rural areas - but all are easy prey for the madmen that don't just roam around on this Blog...

I hope Duggi if you are still able to read this Blog that you are OK - please drop in a comment if you can.
 
Sacred Buddhist relics

Why do people come from far and wide to view relics which are nothing more than the remnants of spiritual masters? Indeed why do they circumambulate these relics in a ritual to pay homage to them?

To Buddhists, the relics of spiritual masters are holy. If they are relics of Buddha or his well-known disciples, they are even more precious and rare.

Buddhists believe that these relics provide an opportunity to make a spiritual connection with Buddha. Viewing these sacred relics can inspire them to develop loving kindness and contribute to peace in the world.

It is said that when a spiritual master is cremated, beautiful pearl-like crystals are found among his ashes. Tibetans call these crystals “ringsel” and believe they hold the living essence of the spiritual master. The pearl-like deposits are a manifestation of the master’s inner purity.

“Relics come from masters who have devoted their whole life to spiritual practices that are dedicated to the welfare of all. Every part of their body – and even their relics – carry a positive energy to inspire goodness and reduce negativity. These relics are precious,” says Lama Zopa Rinpoche, spiritual director of Federation of Preservation of Mahayana Traditions (FPMT), a Buddhist organisation founded by Tibetan monks Lama Thubten Yeshe and his main disciple, Lama Zopa, in 1975.

Lama Zopa has a rare collection of Buddhist relics which he offers for exhibitions around the world. The Maitreya Project Heart Shrine relics which have been collected by Lama Zopa have been displayed at temples and meditation centres.

MORE AT: http://www.timesoftibet.com/articles/390/1/Sacred-Buddhist-relics
 
...to read Ashanthi's post, you'd think apprentice monks were snatched from the cradle, swaddled in a robe, and fucked in the ass all in one go.

Ashanthi - From reading your earlier posts about child ordination I felt that you were representing my views as stated above. Thus my clarification.

As for Bhoomiputras and Tamil Homeland these are seperate arguments. Conflating everything into a mishmash doesn't help the discussions.
 
IVAP - discombobulater's words ....

...to read Ashanthi's post, you'd think apprentice monks were snatched from the cradle, swaddled in a robe, and fucked in the ass all in one go

did I say they were yours?
 
no… you said

....As I have said to IVAP - I am very gravely concerned about the welfare of those poor young boys that are given over to be raised by monks. Can anyone tell me the number of boys under the age of 18 that are in the monastic system? Can you imagine how difficult it is, given the power these monks have for these children to speak out about the mistreatment that they receive. Someone else needs to speak for them - I think Morq & IVAP will have to carry this message forward. Can you tell me if they are ever rescued from the monks?

Reading what you said ( i.e. abused children needing to be rescued from monks ) is not too far from the sarcastic words of discombobulater (thank for visting us o wise one) ...anyway, point taken let's move on.

BTW, left you the answers to your questions in my blog.

However, the role of the monk in our society is far more influential than in other societies.

This is what Morq’s blog entry is about. Nobody seems to disagree with this message.

The argument for the seperation of state and church is usually made / accepted by quoting Jesus when he said Render unto Caesar the things which are Caesar’s, and unto God the things that are God’s Does anyone know if Buddha said anything similar in regards to the affairs of the lay ?
 
I think IVAP we should officialy make you the Policeman of Morq's Blog "-)

I was just curious as to why you were quoting discombobulater ...We will have to agree to disagree about my train of words being "sarcastic" like discomb... (painful name - and may move to another more deserving Blog more worthy of his lofty presence). I don't view anything connected to entrenched systems of child-abuse as warrating trivial comments.

Does it really matter if there is a phillosophy espoused by the Buddha that is similar to the "render unto Ceaser ...." Christian one. Ultimately men know how to manipulate religous ideas to suit themselves - especially those that are hell-bent on attaining political power by deaming their own version to be the most ideal, correct & close to the "original". It then just get's shoved down peoples throats...
 
Sanjaya is not a Buddhist. What right does he have to define what Buddhism is or isn't. If the Buddhists like worshipping a tooth or an idol or a tree it's their right.

Sanjaya shows what really motivates the Sri Lankan NGO peace thugs. We should thank him for it. Instead of throwing off platitudes about peace and tolerance, he says that he really hates Buddhism. This is what these thugs have in common with the LTTE and it's backers. They just all hate Buddhism. That's all.

Don't give them more credit than they deserve. There's no point in asking these people why they criticize Buddhists and not others. Don't ask them why they talk about the army and not the LTTE.

Sanjaya Senanayake aka Morquendi aka Nittewa (a very fitting nickname) is not a moderate or a peace lover. Just like all his colleagues, he's just a closet bible thumper and just hates the Sinhalese and the Buddhists.

Our fault is that we think these people are mentally fit enough to understand a fair and reasonable argument. They are not.

They just get paid for insulting Buddhism and the Sinhalese. They are just trying to do their job right. They are nothing but kuliyata kahina pawns. Don't waste your time on these people and do something productive with it.

Dayweed

PS

Here's indi's take on Sanjaya.

 
Correct me if I am wrong ... but I get the distinct impression that Indi weaves quite a bit of clout with backers like all the various alias annon's that were raving a week ago, Niroshan, Dharshan, the Observer etc & now Dayweed.

Are you guys split along political lines? By this question I mean - for example, does Morq have a leaning towards Rajakapske & Indi towards the UNP or vice versa? Is the JHU & the JVP thrown in there for good measure?

Hmmm.... everyone seems to be a bit like an Indi stooge - even IVAP shows deference to Indi.

Now don't go getting upset about it all - I know how fragile your egos are - I am merely asking the question, politely & I'c curious. Recruitment of party memebers in Sri Lanka begins in High School after all - read Rohan Gunaratna's "The Lost Revolution"...

If Morq & Indi are split on Sri Lankan party lines can I just say that I don't think you (the Indi camp) should view the support that Morq gets as being anti-Buddhist or anti-Sinhala

Here's what the "happy-snapper" Indi wrote above ...

Start of Indi comment ...
I came to Buddhism when I was older and meditation makes my life tangibly better, yet Sri Lankan Buddhism hurts me more than anything.
When I was young I used to trust monks, but now I'm wary of all of them - at the expense of the good ones. Too many ride around in Pajeros, keep women, take money, and play politics. Too few meditate.
Rather than being a force for Buddhist values they are too often a force for Sinhala racism. Harsh Speech, advocating killing, and breaking the precepts right and left.
That said, there are a great many good monks and I'm glad that Buddhism has been preserved as it makes my life better.
End of Indi comment...

Now Indi has made some very precise critical comments on monks here - but not one silly sausage had anything nasty to say to him about it ... not ONE!

I'd like to know what's going on ...

IVAP (I dub IVAP - the "Captain"), Ananthan, Duggi, MORQ, (seeing as it's your Blog), Indi (Oh most favoured one with the Arak bottle) "Dharshani" Cleo someone, anyone, my question is ...

Is this a Blog or a University debating arena being an extension of Sri Lankan party politics?

Because - if this is merely an opportunity for various political camps to slug it out - then everyone involved looses credibility ...
 
dayweed:
.. is not a Buddhist. What right does he have to define what Buddhism is or isn't. - everybody has a right to express their views on ANY subject. if you disagree you can ignore it or give reasons for disagreeing. if you can't that's your problem to his.

If the Buddhists like worshiping a tooth or an idol or a tree it's their right. - yes, but people can say what they want (including imo gratuitously stupid things like morquendi) about that.

Our fault is that we think these people are mentally fit enough to understand a fair and reasonable argument. They are not. - what about you? i can give a apt quotation here but then you will accuse me of a being a bible thumper so i will leave you to do just that without any evidence.

Don't waste your time on these people and do something productive with it. - but where is the fun in that? you know devout buddhists (or for that matter majority of believers in most religion) can be such spoilsports.

ashanthi:
i don't see a split on sri lankan party lines here, at least with regard to the main two parties.

but not one silly sausage had anything nasty to say to him about it ... not ONE! - may be that's because indi seemingly doesn't 'loose it' in his comments like some others here.
 
i don't agree with indi on most issues (buddhism, jvp, peace process, ipod, taste in phones etc) but at least i respect him for not being a complete arsehole (just a bored arrackoholic), although that doesn't necessarily mean i like the bugger (but i kinda do)

indi is obviously not very informed about local issues compared to sanjaya.. but at least he's honest about it and doesn't get paid to write what he writes.

i think indi supports ranil. morquendi supports the greens as well. i'm not saying they are stereotypical die hard supporters. but when they vote their first choice would be ranil.i think the same applies to you two.

sittingnut everybody has a right to express their views on ANY subject. if you disagree you can ignore it or give reasons for disagreeing. if you can't that's your problem to his.

uhh which means i have a right to "express my view" on his opinions as well. i'm just pointing out the bigotry. i thought libertarians (or was that librarians) weren't supposed to lecture others or write in capital letters. anyway, if i had a chance i'd rather slit his throat rather than "ignore it or give reasons for disagreeing". i can leave his body near the parliament (not very original, am i) and victor ivan will write a letter to himself accepting the blame and sign it "senpathy mayadunne".

Dayweed

 
dayweed : i have a right to "express my view" on his opinions as well

Indeed you do. However "An Observer" ( in post 8:39 AM ) and you both question Morquendi's right to freely express his opinions. Why?

As far as I can tell he isn't getting paid for this blog so it's his private opinion. Good luck with the hate-speech arguments then.

I don't agree with his use of language either but he should be free to express himself and be criticised for it. If anything, as sittingnut has commented previously, it’s self-defeating for his argument. May be that’s why no one has defended Morq’s criticism of the “new ideology”.
 

As far as I can tell he isn't getting paid for this blog so it's his private opinion. Good luck with the hate-speech arguments then.

I'm not saying that he gets paid for this particular blog. But Sanjaya and the likes of him (other NGO wallahs, peaceniks, lefties, "alternative" journalists) have the same "views" whether they are writing for a newspaper, making a film or just blogging. These "views" are right out of the NGO textbooks and if they don't show these views in everything they do, would they get their grants and awards and all that stuff? I don't think so. These people are part of the NGO propaganda machine.

We call it mass brain washing. They call it re-structuring our thinking as a nation/race whatever. I'm not saying that they do this just for money. They have the same zeal for their cause as Evangelicals or Jihadists. They truly believe in hating the Sinhala Buddhists and that blinds everything they do. The money, the SUVs, nice apartments, speaking engagements, overseas trips, getting paid in Dollars or Euro... all these are fringe benefits.

Morq is kinda ineffective at this because he's just overwhelmed with his hatred to have any impact on his readers. He only succeeds at showing his hypocrisy and alienating would-be supporters like you guys. But most NGOids know how to sugarcoat their words and pretend to be moderate. But if you press them even they could become like Morquendi.

Dave


 
Ashanthi :

Does it really matter if there is ...

No, it was a personal question from an offline discussion. Strictly speaking such a statement is not needed in arguing for a more doctrinal acceptance of Buddhism, probably would help though.

...even IVAP shows deference to Indi...

deference? No, just idolatry.

My ego dictates that I respond. So here goes.

I assume you are referring to this blog by indi. If so I haven’t seen you involved in a point-by-point critique of indi’s views either, just general rambling.

Other than the fact that indi could have chosen much worse examples of terror I can’t see anything unreasonable in his views. He is not advocating war or intolerance but to hold the LTTE more accountable.

Let’s see (selectively quoted)…

Slowly, however, things have gotten better….. A crappy democracy, but it kinda creaks along.

…There are certainly minority abuses all over the country – to both Tamils and Muslims. There is no denying Sri Lanka’s sins, but Sri Lanka has one redeeming quality. It is democracy. We have the tools to make things better...

All the LTTE has is Prabhakaran, torture, and death…see the LTTE for what they are – dictatorial, facist, inefficient, and corrupt. Extortionists, child abusers, and terrorists…… It’s not time to return to war, but it is time for the LTTE’s halo of efficiency and righteousness to come down a notch….

They cannot do all of these things and call themselves the sole representatives of the Tamil people. Otherwise the responsibilities for all these crimes fall fairly and squarely on the shoulders of all Tamils

Sri Lanka just has to negotiate with them until they calm down and become an annoying political party like the JVP

The way I see it, internationally the moral compass is changing in favour of GOSL and away from the LTTE but not away from the Tamil struggle.

I’ll blog in detail when I have more time.
 
IVAP - you are a very exact & precise Blogger - so I will humour you ...

[Ashanthi :
Does it really matter if there is ...]

However - will you agree that Religion is open to complete corruption of views by Men who use it for their own Evil ends - IVAP ?????
Simple - Yes or No????

[Strictly speaking such a statement is not needed in arguing for a more doctrinal .]

I will repeat myself again - Ivap - in case anyone has failed to read between the lines. I have no issues with Buddhism. I do not need to question the Buddhist faith. I am accepting by nature of my journey through life of many, many, many other faiths. I respect the Buddhist faith and always have done. I do not however accept corruptions and manipulations of true faith for the sake of political gain - it stinks.

.[..even IVAP shows deference to Indi...
deference? No, just idolatry.]

Well then - you will have to explain in a little more detail. From what I can see, he is very much a mere mortal - just like Morq. I see very little difference between the two. You must know something I don't.

[My ego dictates that I respond. So here goes.
I assume you are referring to this blog by indi.]

Couldn't access the link - but it's not a problem - I don't think it's your ego your keen on speaking for here.

[If so I haven’t seen you involved in a point-by-point critique of indi’s views either, just general rambling. ]

If Indi was the next Shakespeare - inspite of that silly poem, maybe - well he's not - is he IVAP, he's just some Aarak dude that kinda takes a lot of photos - heaps and is you know like whatever ....

[Other than the fact that indi could have chosen much worse examples of terror I can’t see anything unreasonable in his views. He is not advocating war or intolerance but to hold the LTTE more accountable.
Let’s see (selectively quoted)…]

Ahhhh - now you are back on your favourite topic ... LTTE shit - hmmm...

Why would Indi's views on LTTE accountability be more relevant than Morq's on his own BLOG - ???? Or mine? I'm Tamil, I say the LTTE must do more than take responsibility. They must say sorry, they must compensate people for what they are accused of doing & have done. AND - SO should EVERYONE ELSE involved in this GOD AWFULL WAR - which has raged in our country for decades$%@#@#^$
Do you agree?

Ivap - if it were true that since Sri Lanka's independence, there has been total bliss on Serendipity and the only blood that has been shed, is by the .... wait for it ... here it comes ... because of the LTTE, then I would say to you that approx 20 million people would have totally exterminated 50,000 people .... who support and actually are the LTTE & that would have been the end of it. This as you well know - ain't the truth.

But you dig up the statistics and you tell me - how many Sinhalese people have lost their lives, live in fear, are slaves to poverty, abuse, neglect, corruption, deprivation of human rights, not allowed to practice the faith of their choice sincie SL got independence.

The Sinhalese people of SL consitutue 80 pec cent of the population on SL - I say, they have suffered in this same ratio. Don't you ever, ever, ever forget that and I dare you to say to me that it is the LTTE - at the very, very most 50,000 strong in the North East of SL that have caused them this misery.

Again - I will back track (or as you might say - ramble) I think there are a few agendas running around, ....rambling through this Blog. Be honest and state what yours is - then let's go from there.

You want to run an anit LTTE campaign - then bloody say so - but don't masquerade as something else...

The only crime that Morq committed was to speak his mind. He is young, male, Sinhala, Buddhist - he has been born into a society that has told him since the day he was born that if he was male, Sinhala & Buddhist that he was top of the food chain. What's your problem - you think that Indi has more rights than Morq? Not so my friend. Morq is on top of the pile and he's going for it. If he cannot do this on his own Blog with his own people then he is a slave, a dumb mute & you are trying to make him so. Such is the lot of many Sri Lankan Sinhalese. Harsh but true. The Tamils - hey they've been eeking out a miserable existence, dark, ugly buggers that they are, for centuries - they are used to it.

My question was - why is their this competition going on between Morq and Indi? The answer is that Morq is perceived to be (although he makes a very strong point of denying this) a LTTE sympathiser.

No matter how many anti- LTTE articles he writes - he's still getting this label - and that would be because ... he is not an LTTE sympathiser but quite possibly a Tamil sympathiser and quite obviously their are people who "anonymously" write on this Blog.

So - next time you're at the well and there is a stranger drinking from what you thought was your God given right to own - learn to share or die of thirst....

There you go Captn IVAP - hope that was nitty gritty enough for you.... :-)

By the way - what did you say on Duggi's Blog that has made her have to delete it.... hmmm not very good, not very good at all.... hmmm isn't she from Melbourne Austrailia too ....hmmmm....

And ... that buisness about jump-Blogging - it's a multi-tasking thing - only women can do it - you men - too hard for you... :-)

No hard feelings now IVAP - honesty is always the best policy - or as the Lord Buddha would say .............. Why speak a lie when you can speak the truth...
 
Dave : oops...missed your comment.

Fair enough but you are just tryng to shout him down and not criticising his views / arguments. Only end up throwing the same mud. At least indi and sittingnut are having a go.
 
Ashanthi :

Arrrgh......I'm totally confused. Wires crossed is more like it.

Why would Indi's views on LTTE accountability be more relevant than Morq's on his own BLOG - Because you asked about it and in the process wounded my ego ( sniff sniff ) when you wrote everyone seems to be a bit like an Indi stooge - even IVAP shows deference to Indi.

You ask me a question about indi's views (coddling terrorism ... thingy) and when I answer it then you plaster me with something else.

As to my agenda, take a look at the heading on my blog. Sorry to disappoint but I haven't applied a label to myself yet. Here are the answers to the initial questions.

Simple - Yes or No???? - yes, yes and yes. Not just religions but anything that requires a degree of faith.

Strictly speaking … - I was answering your question (Ashanthi : 10:39 AM) that’s all.

true faith - what’s that ?

… idolatry … - That was a joke. Probably should have added a :)

he's just some Aarak dude - He is also an individual with a point of view. Common play the ball not the man.

SO should EVERYONE ELSE involved in this GOD AWFULL WAR … - Agreed, it’s called reconciliation. If only the GOSL got on with it by paying out compensation to those affected by 83 it would be a start. Morquendi probably has some views on this too. Also, how about a reconciliation / commemoration day public holiday for it too?

if it were true that since Sri Lanka's independence new questions I'll address later ... yawn
 
Ashanthi - I only left only one comment on dugi's blog, nothing more. If she deleted it then so be it. You saw it.

Indi vs Morq have a history. Try searching the respective blog archives.

I don't want to run an anti-LTTE campaign. They do a good job. My comments about the LTTE are restricted to two topics. A) Child soldiers where I was being quoted out of context, and B) your question about indi's views.

What's your problem - you think that Indi has more rights than Morq?
So this is what I get for defending Morqs right to free speech as well as defending indi from accusations of racism ? Thanks.

When I refer to the moral compass I am talking about the *current state* of play not history. Overtime it obviously changes.

They say that the truth is somewhere between the two extremes.

G'night
 
dayweed:
you don't have anything new to say do you?and as ivap says, 'Only end up throwing the same mud'. it may help if you took your time and thought a little before posting comments, after all even monkeys will eventually write shakespeare if given enough time.

btw what's with the all bolds ?
from shrek:
[while looking at Lord Farquaad's huge castle]
Shrek: Do you think he's maybe compensating for something?
 
ivap & ashanthi: why don't you two go on a date or something? :-)
 
sittingnut -you mind your own business or we'll both start on you - cheeky so and so :-). Actually it's great to have someone else with a more balanced point of view on board - keep it up!!!

However, I think that internet dating should be banned - it's a joke!

As for Blog dating - I know Indi & Morq have been "dating" each other for years ...and look what's happened to their relationship!!!! Indi's hit the Aarak & Morq's run off with another wine!!!

Arranged marriages are the go -you know you just get to see a photo & then it's wedding bells! Hey they last forever & just so long as I don't have to have one - it's cool!

The problem with the Sinhala/Tamil marriage was that it was arranged by a dodgy marriage Broker - the Poms who stole the dowry! Hence I believe it should be anulled & both parties be given an enforced seperation - immediately followed by a total divorce!!!! Serioulsy - I think some races should NEVER, ever mix. They are just not meant to.

IVAP - all is forgiven, I just wanted to clear up some points. Look I've told you - I reckon you are the new Captain Blog - firm, fair & ... feisty :-). Deeply sorry if I've been a bit harsh. I did read your intro & yes it's clear. I can't exactly remember that comment on Duggi's though - it worries me a bit...just hope she didn't get into trouble....You know Morq is a battle hardened monk punching nugget who knows how to defend himself ...not like Duggi - hmmm - never mind...

Speaking of playing the ball.... hope you Ozzies win - don't want to see our old Colonial masters get the better of the Ozzies ...it's my way of punishing them for ruining that marriage 50 years ago like they did in every other country that they crashed & burned from Zimbabwe to Palestine ....

So Peace Brother/s :-)

Morq - where are you - come back - I think we've managed to get a restraining order on Indi & his wife-bashing friends, so it's safe!!!

I'd like to propose a new topic for us to participate in...
I would like us to propose a 10 point peace plan for Sri Lanka. I invite 10 Bloggers to participate ... Morq (of course), IVAP, Sittingnut, Ananthan, Ian, Yaroo, Kev Lomax, myself ...hmmm, alright Indi's allowed to & 1 other person - I said person - not a nutter ...

I'll go first ....this is just a draft ...so bear with me ...
1. Trial seperation - Both parties break of any further contact immediately. Withdrawal of troops from Jaffna. Re-signing of commitment to stop picking of potential foes.
2. Seperation to be enforced by a Peace-keeping force administered by the UN - no more rampaging Sikhs please !!!
3. At the end of a 5 year seperation - ALL associated parties must lay down their arms.
4. A referendum to be held in the North & East whereby electorates can decide if they wish to remain within the Sri Lankan framework or set up an Independent state.
5. Based on the above a constituion is drawn up for the North & East.

That's a start. Please add in other points. Now - if you disagree with a point. Name the author of the point & state W H Y. No need for mud-slinging just say Why you think it is inappropriate/does not work/is not fair/or whatever.

So - at the end of this excersice we will have our 10 point plan for Peace & be able to submitt it in the upcomming elections via the Bloggers for Peace Party :-) - I reckon it will be better than anything that those rotten Politicians come up with!!!

Again I say - Peace Brothers!!!
 
What do you mean by separation though? Simply no SLA? no government? trial eelam?

are we making this realistic or just idealistic? cause i dont think a lot of those would fly

the gosl would never go for a trial separation, that would be like effectively granting a free state, it would be hard to reverse after 5 years
 
Thanks for counting me in but I think I am happy being part of the audience. However Ashanthi, your first point doesn't seem to be feasible at all from where I see it. We are where we are because of the very same point and am pretty sure that the GoSL (and more importantly the citizens) will not agree to even a trial 'ealam'[if that's what you are implying]. If that were the case, we would have seen Ranil taking this country a step forward in his time as PM. I would suggest, a ceasefire but of course one that lasts for at least 5 good years. When I say ‘good’, I mean not spending time (1) pointing at each other’s mistakes (2) counting who’s breached the agreement the most number of times. Of course neither party will be honest and that is expectable (given their past) however it would be good to have the UN monitor the ceasefire instead of the Norwegians (even though I feel they’ve done a good job so far or at least not a bad one) purely because the JVP wouldn’t have anyone to be pointing fingers at. I still remember reading 2 full-page articles of how Erik Solheim went cheating on his wife. That was the limit!
5 good years would make a significant difference to both camps. The LTTE will have plenty of time to think about other things in life. ‘things’ that don’t require children with guns. They’ve already established a few educational institutions in the north and am sure they’d be more than happy to strengthen their so called extra curricular activities. At the end of the day you have to remember that they [cadres] are humans too and would like to lead a ‘close to normal’ life. So the idea would be to deviate their attention from the usual guns and shells and take them step closer to living life normally When I say ‘them’ again. . .I mean the cadres. The ones who do the actual fighting. The ones who lose their lives in battle. Prabakaran belongs to a generation that will not be able to see anything beyond war and hence I do not expect him to change in those proposed 5 years but of course we have to remember that he also has children and they would also like to lead ‘close to normal lives’. So it is a possibility. It would also be good to bring forward, the elite advisors of the LTTE. The ones with the PhDs from Cambridge and Oxford (like someone mentioned in Indi’s blog) because at the end of the day they are part of most of the LTTE’s major decisions and I don’t see why the LTTE should have Thamilchelvam (an illiterate bustard-apologies for that but I can’t stand that guy) do all the talking. Something he’s done a hopeless job of too.
My two cents. . .
 
Morq: I seriously think we should move this thread to a new post.

Ashanthi: You've been given the opportunity to post on Nittewa- why don't you? this idea has been the best from you so far. Let's see if you can address the issues this time without going off track.

Yaaro: So nice to see you back. along with IVAP, it's nice to know that there will be discussion on the issues.

And as for a separate state? I'm all for it. On the following conditions:

(01) Cessation of hostilities by all parties.

(02) Guarantee to sinhalese and muslim villagers displaced by ethnic cleansing that their original lands will be returned.

(02a) GoSL provides compensation to victims of 1983 riots.

(03) Immediate demobilization of child soldiers by whichever party, where applicable.

(04) Greater transparency in the "judicial" systems in GoSL land and those set up by the LTTE whereby people adversely affected by the conflict may seek redress from them, where applicable.

(05) Infrastructure and facilites to be provided by the LTTE for the new state - LTTE to provide compensation to GoSL for GoSL facilities in Eelam.

Even the Mafia decided to go legit - 'cos doing so was more profitable.

I'd love to see this separate state that you dream of, Ashanthi.

But on a more realistic note, I think Yaaro has gotten the right idea. Most of us "average people" with special emphasis on those who acutally live in Sri Lanka, would want to get along with our lives. The best option is to overhaul the constitution.

Why? Simple - a separate state of Eelam would constitute a Tamil majority that has "won" its place through violence and dictatorship.

(someone called Maninder had some interesting points at the lankannewspapers.com site on this matter.)

That is not a viable alternative in these enlightened times. Perhaps in the 17th century, but surely our progess thus far cannot have been in vain?

Besides, the old kingdoms spoken of so highly were lost. There needs to be a united Sri Lanka. One where extremism espoused by the JVP, LTTE or their supporters has no place.

Alternatively, we may turn to Romance novels for inspiration. :p
 
Oh yeah, if Prabhakaran is still wanted by India for murdering Rajiv Gandhi, (Indian court decision - not mine) and there is a separate state for the LTTE of which obviously he would be head, wouldn't that make the new state (Eelam, for arguments' sake) a rogue state? Or at least one headed by a wanted criminal?

Hmmm.. excellent opportunity for India.

Dayweed: Are you Ashanthi's sinhalese alter-ego?
 
Just to set the record straight:

Since LTTE=Tamil, does it also mean Tamil=LTTE?

I think not.

Just in case anyone here had mistaken my anti-LTTE sentiments for anti-tamil sentiment, like some certain insecure people have, in previous discussions.
 
Guys - thanks so much for all the responses - I am much heartened by this.

I have done a speed read through all of your comments & will respond in detail later - right now I have to get into the kitchen & feed the famished - as I told you this is the lot of a Sri Lankan woman - but hey I'd rather eat our food than anyone elses!!!

Just briefly - Kev - can you please refrain from patronising me. Don't forget that I have Mars in Saggitarius - which means I have a temper! I do want your input & I consider myself quite a highly evolved individual in that I can take what I dish out without resorting to silly games - but we do need to ... put aside our differences & see if we can work these issues through.

Yaroo yes good to see you back too (hope you've got your favourite suit on!) espeically as MORQ is STILL in hiding!!!!

To all of you - again thanks for your input - this is a Joint excercise - I am not in anyway expecting you all to agree with me on anything - but let's see, surely we can find some common groung.

As for the issue of starting a new thread - yes Morq if you could do it - great. I have to confess I was very unhappy & uncomfortable with the whole Buddhist thing. Badly behaved monks - that's different. I think Morq was misunderstood & just attacked - I don't like that I either. OK his language was harsh - but - hey it's his Blog & we all seem to agree with him in some way - including, dare I say - the very, very quiet Indi .... come out, come out wherever you are....

OK - I've got to dash - we're having hoppers & Fish curry tonight - YUMMY!!!! I managed to buy a REAL COCONUT - hmmm - I've now got to work out how to scrape the darn thing - because of course I don't have one of those proper scrappers that I learnt to use in my grandmother's kitchen - yes thats why I have to start now - but it will be worth it :-)!!!!
 
Agreed. Lets move on.

Apologies for my part in moving away from the issues.
 
Ashanti he has been born into a society that has told him since the day he was born that if he was male, Sinhala & Buddhist that he was top of the food chain
Say that again? Aww puleeez. Refurbished cliches won't do your bankrupt thinking any good. Reality check!

Kevin Since LTTE=Tamil, does it also mean Tamil=LTTE?
More trite. LTTE represents tamil nationalistic aspirations. Ask any tamil. Even those who don't agree with its tactics will tell you that they support LTTE's ideology. If I were a Tamil I would support the tigers. Think from their perspective man.

btw what's with the all bolds ?
Maybe I have a small penis. Haha.

The only solution to Sri Lanka's problems is laissez-faire anarchism anarchism. Sinhalese should fight for their community's rights and the Tamils should do the same. You cannot artificially impose peace in a situation as complicated as this. All attempts to do so have failed and will fail in the future.

Think about this scenario. Sinhalese and Tamils start killing each other and after a lot a bloodshed one group will be exterminated. The other group will live happily ever after. Sinhalese have an edge over Tamils where sheer numbers are concerned but Tamils are patriotic and committed to their cause unlike the Sinhalese idiots.

Or they will realize the futility of war and join hands to form one nation. Peace will prevail.

Or they will be polarized into two parts of the island and create two countries.

You'll never know what nature/god intended unless you let it take its course. Let them fight.

I know you squeamish bleeding hearts won't like this. But this is mother nature's solution. Survival of the fittest. Natural selection. Whatever you want to call it.

dAYw33d
 
dAYw33d or whatever
Survival of the fittest. Natural selection - look who is speaking!
 
Sanjaya Senanayake's blog, eh?

Seems like I've been wasting my time.

-Captn. Sais
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