| by Gajalakshmi Paramasivam
( July 4, 2013, Melbourne, Sri Lanka Guardian) Today is celebrated as Independence day by Americans. As an Independent person I wished America a happy anniversary when I woke up this morning. No, I have never lived as an American but I live as an Independent person and hence value America’s contribution to Independence.
When I opened my emails there was one all the way from America which said:
‘You see the nature of all things. Your knowledge is complete, your wisdom undeniable, your verbosity unrepentant.’
I responded as follows:
‘I liked all the adjectives except the last one. But for my knowledge to be complete I have to have the other side also. Otherwise we live away from the practical world. Today is your Independence day. Happy Independence day. To me Truth is Independence. Until we live above the reality around us we need to wear the negatives with the positives to keep the balance going at that level. The parallel of my verbosity is your un-practiced knowledge of the law. A senior academic at the University of New South Wales – said about academic meetings – that they were ‘talkfests’. I must have gotten infected by that academic germ which translates as verbosity at my level of reality.’
Often we do not see our own negatives. But if we are finding fault with someone without higher authority over them, we need to know the ‘other’ side of the benefit we get from finding fault – which happens much in Sri Lankan affairs at the International level.
This morning I received also the following message from a Tamil Diaspora leader:
‘A visit to India by a delegation of Tamil National Alliance (TNA) prompted the Indian government to issue a statement on the dilution of the 13th Amendment. But behind the diplomatic rhetoric lies a bone of contention not to be taken lightly according to TNA MP and senior lawyer M.A Sumanthiran.’
Devolution as per my assessment of the current situation in Sri Lanka’s North – would help prevent interference by the Sri Lankan Government elected by majority. But would that alone lead to Independence and Self-Governance for Tamils? To my mind, we need to access the energies of our ancestors to become independent as a smaller group. It’s simple science – we lose lateral participation towards vertical growth.
The contribution by Tamil Tigers has largely been to bring the problem to the wider world. They intended a smaller world in which there was no external interference. Their external interference was the Sinhalese. It is also the natural outcome when one fights on the basis of a physical attribute that language is.
In Northern Sri Lanka – people sing the Sri Lankan national anthem in Tamil – quite naturally. I was informed that they had the lyrics in the school books. There was no sing of conflict in singing the Sri Lankan national anthem – in Tamil. Hence to me that particular part did not seek separate State. No, they could not have sung the Tamil Eelam song – that we hear within the Tamil Diaspora functions. But if they were against One Sri Lanka – they would not have sung the Sri Lankan National Anthem – but just gone about their sports activities.
There are war victims in that group. Many of them were helped by the Tamil Tigers during Government attacks. Some were part of the LTTE for whatever reasons – largely economic reasons. But they seem to have accepted their reality quite comfortably – especially where they are comfortable in their day to day living.
Whatever the Diaspora does, it needs to ensure that this harmony is not disturbed for at least one generation. Those folks have suffered enough and that has helped them learn the lesson – long before any actions due to LLRC or the UN.
God has given us – each one of us to live independently through our Truth. Truth is Independence. I believe I have helped these folks heal themselves by living close to their Truth – with or without Devolution. I appreciate very much that that is why Gandhi lived with those at the grassroots to earn the authority to fight for independence which was also fight for Truth. By realizing our own Truth – we become Independent. Once we are Independent, we naturally share that with others who are natural with us. One such sharing is listed in the Appendix. During that natural moment I concluded the sharing by saying ‘Thank you so very much from my soul. You are our true brother. We lose bogus ones and gain real ones.’
I do believe that with an appropriate structure – we would live and share together – enjoying inner Peace. Each one of us needs to preserve our investments in traditional values of Independence wherever possible. Both Sinhalese as well as Tamil nationalists would need that vertical strength more if there is Devolution. True Nationalists would naturally draw more from their roots by respecting their elders and not by limiting themselves to current generation leaders without such strengths.
Following is a sharing with a fellow Sri Lankan of Sinhalese origin. The original email was about how we were let down by members of our family:
From: G Goonetilleka
Sent: Wednesday, 3 July 2013 10:34 PM
To: Gaja Param
Subject: Re: Self Governance begins at home.
I feel with your sadness at all these exploitations by greedy who are all around us wherever we choose to live. 'Utopia' does not seem to exist on this Planet. If it does in reality, I know not where except in ones mind as a concept.
"Dhammo have' Rakkhathi Dhammachari" The "Dhamma" (Truth) protects those who live by it.
I stand with you Gaja and Param and feel so much in your compassion for others...
Please do not worry as you have your hearts in the right place...
I am so sorry you have had to go through what you have...after all you did for others and extended your hand in true compassion. It is true we learn till the day we depart from this Planet.
Please recover well and I hope that this episode will pass with the LEAST inconvenience to you, Param and children.
I responded as follows:
From: Gaja Param
Sent: Thursday, 4 July 2013 8:02 AM
To: 'G Goonetilleka'
Cc: Members of the Sri Lanka Reconciliation Forum
Subject: RE: Self Governance begins at home.
Thank you so very much for this sharing of your feelings. What you say about the exploiters and the greedy is so very true. It’s true Gamani that Utopia is not in a particular place at a particular time. It is in our mind when we live in Truth. To the extent we realise Truth the natural way is to share with those around us. Given that we as Sri Lankans are needing a strong structure for ourselves, it is our duty to share the problems that we cannot address in our generation – so that the next generation and / or the wider world would beware. It is like ensuring that we inform our customer of faults in the goods we are selling – so that the customer would not feel cheated. To me it is my Dharmic duty. Some others may think otherwise and they are entitled to do so. But those of us who seek Independence and self-governance need to ensure that we do not damage other’s opportunities to enjoy the returns from their investments in Independence and self-governance.
I also believe that Truth protects those who live by It. This time It happened through you. When I read out the message to Param – he was also moved and said ‘Gamani is a good soul. You are Gamani. WE may know all the answers intellectually and/or through rote learning. But to actually have the solution we must share in the pain of the experience. That is the law of Truth. That pain then feels the comfort of the solution and retains the sadness as a protective Lesson – but without anxieties. You share Gamani – that is your special attribute. One needs courage to share pain and you have that courage.
Thank you so very much from my soul. You are our true brother. We lose bogus ones and gain real ones.