| by Gajalakshmi Paramasivam
( August 7, 2014, Melbourne, Sri Lanka Guardian) Due to the tragedy unfolding in the Middle East a section of the Sri Lankan Diaspora is discussing whether Churchill was a racist?. One participant directed us to writings by Australian Sanjeev Sabhlok who says “Had it not been for two key reformers: (1) Jesus Christ and (2) Mahatma Gandhi (and through him Martin Luther King and Nelson Mandela who influenced these barbarians), the brutal Western hordes would have been killing each other even now.”
To me – both these leaders were driven by Truth – and were able to give form to their Truth beyond official systems of their periods. As per my experience, I would add Sai Baba for my generation. Sai Baba did not go to political leaders. They came to Him. In the case of Jesus Political leaders valued Him after His time on earth in that form. Often something happens due to combined Energies of more than one individual or group.
Spiritual leaders pooled their Energies towards manifestation of outcomes that confirmed the workings of Truth. At the higher levels – their mere presence directly and/or through the faithful would add such Energy to confirm and strengthen naturally good outcomes.
Political leaders on the other hand are often driven by outcomes that would favor them with majority. Countries/States that elect film stars as their leaders must expect higher degree of quick and attractive expressions towards winning easily – prior to logical thinking.
During my recent stay in Colombo – a young Canadian Tamil stated after reading some parts of my book ‘Naan Australian’ that he was reminded of the Tamil film Ehlaam Arivu / Seventh sense – which is about an Indian Tamil migrating to China and becoming a Spiritual leader in martial arts – by using the mind. When I came back to Sydney – I watched that film and noted the reference to Sri Lankan Tamils needing help due to suppression of their sovereignty. My mind immediately rejected this conclusion. To me my own investment in independence at costs that were very painful to me - meant that any group that I felt a part of did not need ‘external’ help. Given that I feel Sri Lankan as well as Tamil –Indian Tamils are ‘outsiders’ to me for this purpose. I wrote as follows in my book in relation to this:
“To my mind those Tamils who entrusted their struggle for independence to the Tamil Tigers were actually embracing the Tamil Nadu leaders as their leaders. LTTE leader Prabaharan addressed Tamil Nadu Chief Minister MG Ramachandran as `]f]a / Anna – meaning Big Brother. But at the same time, he is known to have stated in relation to the Indian support for other armed groups – that that was inappropriate because we needed to Do It Ourselves. The Tamil Tigers received funding from MG Ramachandran and in one of his public statements, Tiger leader Prabaharan says that if not for the handsome cash contribution by MG Ramachandran – they could not have continued with their fight for separation. The same MG Ramachandran failed to publicly share his political status with the Tamil Tigers. To my mind status is of higher value than money. Goodwill confirmed by status has ownership value. The above statements by the Tiger leader contradict themselves. Tamil intellectuals ought to have addressed this at that stage. Even now, many of them are not able to recognize the contradiction. The problem with lateral spread is this ‘business’ attitude that works against ‘family’ attitude and therefore against ownership through the hierarchical path of faith and gratitude.” Naan Australian (Chapter 13-Our True Heritage)
The way Indians view the Sri Lankan problem is different to the way Sri Lankans feel the problem. If there is a problem – we must feel and feel as deeply as possible to find the ‘internal solution’. In his book ‘Rajiv’s Dealings with LTTE’ (Sri Lanka Guardian), Mr. Natwar Singh, then the Indian State Minister for External Affairs, confirms the influence that Mr. MG Ramachandran had over the LTTE leader. I would never be able to call Mr. MG Ramachandran ‘Anna’ in Governance issues. Anna is big brother. A senior has the responsibility to ‘provide’ and the junior has the responsibility to be respectful – until the two become one. In governance issues I would elect myself as the senior to Mr. MG Ramachandran and therefore to the LTTE leader.
This book confirms further that the LTTE leader wanted to ‘show’ Tamil Eelam more than ‘be’ the Tamil Eelam that confirmed the Sovereignty of Sri Lankan Tamils. In a recent episode of Tamil TV serial Nathaswaram – it was highlighted how quick cash acquired by one son damaged family values painfully developed by the other. Often those seeking a share of such quick cash – would turn out to be ‘advisors’ to the ones earning and saving human values – unit by painful unit. Sri Lankan Tamils looking for popular vote by teaming up with Indian Tamil leaders or even Western leaders – are like these ‘self-appointed advisors’ to the real leaders who worked hard and sacrificed deep for their independence. Yet as per our wise elders – a family must prevent dealing in cash because it carries the risk of loss of common faith and therefore relationships.
There has been discussion about whether India’s occupation of Sri Lankan Tamil areas in 1987 was an ‘invasion’ or ‘humanitarian gesture’. Mr. Natwar Singh states about how he responded to the then Prime Minister of India - Mr. Rajiv Gandhi in this regard: ‘If we were to send planes to drop humanitarian supplies into Jaffna, we would be violating Sri Lanka’s air space,’ I replied. I asked if we had informed our Permanent Representative at the UN, Chinmaya- Gharekhan, about this decision. This had not been done either. I said that it was imperative for us to do so to make sure that the Security Council did not meet to discuss Sri Lanka. (Sri Lanka at that time was a member of the Security Council.) I had no doubt that most of the Security Council members would sympathize with Sri Lanka’
A gesture to be classified as Humanitarian service needs to have happened ‘beyond’ the official power and not ‘before’. India as the leader in that region – had enough power to absorb any official failures in exhausting the official avenues available before seeking to provide humanitarian service. Mahatma Gandhi was transparent when he wrote against the British government of his time. He knew he was acting in breach of the law but his was ‘beyond’ the official system – to express the Truth he had discovered. Not so the Indian gesture when IPKF (Indian Peacekeeping Force) landed in Northern Sri Lanka. This landing was also an ‘occupation’ but the LTTE which promised Independent Eelam – was silent at that time. India’s food and medicine drops could be described as emotional gestures at best. They would have ceased at that level if they were genuinely thinking that it was humanitarian. By planting the IPKF – they confirmed it was before exhausting common laws of the UN and/or bilateral agreements with the Sri Lankan Government. Two leaders of emotional sections of the Sri Lankan society driven by money – formed a coalition to get rid of IPKF.
Tamil supporters of LTTE lost their claim in the Court of Natural Justice – then itself – when they crossed over the racial barrier to form coalition with Mr. Premedasa then the President of Sri Lanka and LTTE leader Prabhakaran. There are many lessons in this for Sri Lankan leaders on both sides. Independence cannot be ‘won’ through quick victories through cash transactions. It has to be earned through deep sacrifices with the capacity to carry the motivation of the causers beyond time and space borders. There are Sri Lankans living on both sides of the racial border enjoying the joys of such true independence. They are the real spiritual force that would develop and sustain a free Sri Lanka.