In the perilous time, when diseases and maladies are appearing like
hydras head is it useful to consider how Pirith could be used as a
preventive measure in addition to the other precautions presently
advocated and in use.
The Ratana Sutta, which was used to quell wide spread disease in the
city of Vesali during the Buddha’s time could be chanted in Buddhist
homes as a protective measure.
The effect would be greater if a person has faith about its efficacy
as a preventive measure. For reaping its benefits, it should be chanted
in a serene atmosphere, like in a shrine room, as there is an invitation
to the deities of the ten thousand fold world systems, to give ear to
the word of the Buddha.
It should be recited in the natural way and not in an artificial
musical tone, as in some renditions, for its full benefit to accrue.
Another Piritha that could be recited as a protective measure, is the
Khandha Piritha, as it is one for the protection of the aggregates i.e.
a being. It is not necessary to recite an entire Sutta but the effective
portion would be sufficient which starts from Virupakkehi me meththam...
to -namo saththanam samma sambuddhananthi.
The essence of this Sutta is the generation of loving kindness (Metta)
to all beings that is “without feet, with two feet, with four feet and
many feet” and the thought that none of these could cause harm to the
person (mosquitoes included).
The Piritha also recalls the immeasurable qualities of the Triple Gem
and seek protection therein from external sources.
The Mora Piritha, which was a practice of the Bodhisathwa could also
be used as a protective measure, especially from enemy action. It should
be borne in mind that paying obeisance to the Triple Gem and seeking
refuge therein should be taken as an initial step for greater effect.
All Sri Lankans are now a very happy because now we can breathe good
air without thinking of a bomb explosion in the country. So far we lived
thinking of our loved ones who are living in the city or who are
travelling within the country. We do not now think about the tragedies
which were a normal thing in the past. So we all are now free citizens.
Even the Tamils are free from the clutches of LTTE who had no clear
life and who did not have a free mind. Our heroic soldiers had made us
happy forever. They laid their lives for our better living.
We thank the President, Commanders of the Armed Forces and the
Defence Secretary for straight forward fighting the LTTE and destroying
them in the name of peace-loving people of the country.
It is very sad to find that smoking in public places still continues
in spite of stringent rules imposed by the Government.
The worst of it is that even the very guardians of law - the
Policemen in their uniform enter the hotels and buy cigarettes and start
smoking in the hotel causing inconvenience to non-smokers seated there
to have tea or shorteats.
If the policemen violate the Law, how can they control the common
masses using public places for smoking? Who will take action against the
The only possible solution to this problem of ending the practice of
smoking in public places or in private places, is complete ban of
smoking by bringing the special Act to ban manufacturing of all
varieties of smoking cigarettes, cigars, beedies etc. by the commercial
Then, there cannot be cigarettes or cigars in the market or shops to
buy and smoke. If anyone illegally manufactures such things for smoking,
he or she must be prosecuted in the courts. Therefore, let the righteous
Government boldly take this action immediately.
The monsoon rains bring disaster to the Kandyan villagers perched at
the mountains bordering extensive estates left behind by the British.
The Kandyan tragedy begins with the Kandyan Convention of 1815 and
the rebellion of 1818. The Convention of 1818 took away the rights of
the people enshrined in the convention of 1815, confirming the doubts
and fears of Ven. Wariyapola Sumangala the monk with great foresight.
Now that a great victory has been won in the North liberating the
people of the North and East from the clutches of a murderous tyrant
distinguished as a freedom fighter, it is time to liberate the Kandyan
from the clutches of the colonial hangovers.
Vast stretches of Kandyan lands have been swallowed up by the tea
estates. Peasants live on the edge of the estate on lands subject to
earthslips, while thousands of estate lands remain intact. Colonial
British surveyors chose the best and safest lands to be cultivated as
The genocide of 1818 and the ‘scorched earth’ policy left the
Kandyans bereft of all males over 4 years and under 60 years of age. All
fruit bearing trees were cut down and paddy fields set aflame. Today in
Welimada there is a village called Palugama (desolate village) which is
a living testimony to the travails of the Kandyan peasantry.
The stupor to which the Kandyan peasantry has fallen after the
rebellions of the eighteen hundreds, must be shaken off. It is time that
the lush Kandyan hills and dales went back to the rightful owners, the
May the victorious cries at the North reverberate in the Kandyan
Personally I am happy to see how Kumar Sangakkara talks to the world
press, and all cricket fans in the language of the Forefathers’ of the
game, but more eloquent than them. The way he addresses is better than
the best of them.
However what I considered absolutely magnificent was the way he
addressed OUR people, in SINHALA, which I believe (please correct me if
I am mistaken) is the very first time a Sri Lankan Cricket Captain, or
even maybe for any other sport, did so.
It makes me prouder as I have had the opportunity to be officially,
together for a very short time at a Bank where he worked. All of us on
this small island wish the best to our Cricket team, ably led by Kumar
I read with much interest Prof. Shantha Hennayake’s article titled
‘Anti-intellectual behaviour of university students’ in the Daily News
of June 23.
I am completely in agreement with Prof. Hennayake when he says that
student leaders of the JVP continue to see the world through the failed
extremist socialist dogma which preaches that eliminating the rich is
the only means of eradicating poverty, by hating affluence, money,
profit, private capital, economic competition, globalization and
What the JVP student leaders and university students especially in
the arts faculties should realize is that eliminating the rich will make
everyone poor and such theoretical ideas do not make sense in the real
world. There is no point in hating affluence. We must strive to be
affluent both as a people and a country.
The best examples of such countries in the region are Malaysia and
We have to accept that we live in an economically globalized world
where money, profit, private capital and economic competition are part
and parcel of daily life. We might not be globalized politically, but we
are most certainly globalized economically.
I have seen a news item which states “It is compulsory for the people
to wear their seatbelts when travelling....”
If the authorities are going to implement this rule for individuals
who are travelling by private vehicle, what about the hundreds who
travel by public transport without any seat belts?
What about those hanging over the footboards and hanging onto dear
life by hanging on to luggage carriers and window frames in public
Are the authorities concerned over a single private individual
risking his life without a seat-belt or is it that they do not care two
hoots to the hundreds of commuters who are travelling by buses and
trains and other forms of public transport if they travel without their
Can anyone intimate to the public as to the logic of enforcing an
individual in a private car to wear his seat belts and those in other
public transports need not.!!!
R. de Silva’s letter, Lakshman Kadirgamar’s lesson, reminds me of an
experience I had with Mr. Kadirgamar.
After offering me accommodation at the prestigious ‘London House’
hostel for overseas students, then Warden Colonel Wilson made the
comment “We have had an excellent predecessor from your country and I do
hope you would maintain the same standards.”
At that point I had no clue as to who this person was as Mr.
Kadirgamar was much senior to me but later came to know that it was him
and when I met him much later in Washington DC and mentioned this to
him, the humble gentleman’s comment was “the Warden must have been