Let us be wise and virtuous
The feelings and the activities of people vary from person to person. In some instances, those activities are good and virtuous. In other instances, they are bad, vicious or evil. To mitigate the harsher effects of the variance, we need to discipline our tongues and bodies and minds.
We understand good and evil as the cause of happiness and sorrow.
In the past, Sri Lankans — both men and women — chewed betel. Chunam was an additive to a chew of betel. This chunam was kept separately. The chunam — container was called a “Killotey” and this led to a popular adage, which says there is a little ‘chunam’ in every person’s chunam-container.” In each person, there is both good and bad.
There is a force that protects people of all nationalities and faiths. People need to understand that there is no happiness or sorrow outside of this force. There is a saying that each person must be self-critical before criticising others.
To develop a country, both the rulers and citizens need to be sincerely committed to development. Is it possible, for those, who cannot help their own parents and their own family to help their country? They cannot. What has happened to the reputation Sri Lanka had as a land where most people were disciplined, serene and civilized?
Prior to the rule of the Dutch, the Portuguese and the British, Indian powers such as the “Cholans” ruled some areas of Sri Lanka. Despite all that, we were able to preserve our indigenous virtues and our culture.
Sri Lanka was reputed as a land where people of various races and religions lived in harmony. This is my view: “Modern science has been able to promote various skills; yet, at the back of some of these, schemes, there is deception or make-believe and less of truth.
These days one of the main topics is lesbian and gay passion. There are many strategies and many tricks adopted by those who attempt to achieve their aims, to hide their weaknesses and their incapacities.
Some western countries have allowed dangerous mentally sick persons to roam about freely. This has not occurred in Sri Lanka yet. But, a problematic situation has already dawned upon our nation, where people keep their mouth and eyes shut.
In India, some ‘superstars’ have been allowed to roam free, displaying publicly their weaknesses that had been kept hidden. Should we allow the same to happen in our country?
A saying that prevailed in the past was, ‘When the signs appear to be bad, take the girl into the house.”
Some are trying to bring back an era, changing that advice. In all ethnic groups and religions, the people need arise and stop this danger.
Just as humans, animals also have eyes, noses, tongues and bodies. These doors of perception are controlled by the mind. When the mind is weakened, the activities of bodily organs get distorted. There is a doctrine to restrain the mind. Such doctrine is contained in religion and philosophy.
In today’s world, there are many religious beliefs. But, those who actually follow the teachings of those religions are few. Many people cover up this shortcoming through falsehoods. But, the time has come for us to renew our awareness that life is impermanent.
It is time that the drum-beating done in the name of religious doctrine is stopped. The time has come for us to act responsibly, do our duty and behave in a virtuous manner.
Our leaders and people should get together and act according to a code of ethics that will bring about humility, simplicity and contentment.
India is working towards lasting development due because people’s movements are working powerfully and selflessly. They call it ‘Hartal’ — the “unified will of the people”. Often what we have in Sri Lanka today are protests by hired people with empty slogans. Such false shows should be stopped.
We will die one day. But when that happens we should make it possible for those who are going to be born in the future to have ample opportunities to lead a good life.
The European rulers, who conquered the world, exiled some people from their countries. Some who were exiled from Europe were sent away to Arabia. Those who were born in Arabia are now taking steps to take revenge from Europe for that act.
When those exiled from England by Queen Elizabeth the First, were getting ready to go to Australia, Australia staged a Hartal (strike). This is often not talked about.
England is not yet fully reconciled with Ireland. I remember how the Irish people exploded bombs in London’s ‘Marble Arch’ in the 1970s when I was living there.
Fortunately, the bombs exploded late at night! Christianity and Islam have had similarities and some links. Today, suicide bombers are terrorising the world. Even the Muslims cannot control and restrain these groups.
An old adage asserts that “those who take up arms will die by arms.” The power of weapons, created to bring about destruction can be negated only through patience, tolerance, kindness and compassion. This can be brought about by overcoming desire, craving and attachment. This doctrine is contained only in Buddhism.
In this small country, where the sacred and eternal word of the Supreme Buddha dominates, wise people must move away from those who are Buddhists only by name. Wise people must assemble with one mind, patiently and with far-sightedness and obey the philosophic observation made by Maestro Guttila, who confessed that “he in his old age cannot perform music as deftly as in earlier times.” Wise men should not get engaged in tasks they cannot perform. They must exercise their wisdom and must do what they can and what they must with circumspection.
Those who approve this view should add more thoughts to this idea. Once they do that, they can present this philosophy to the world. The spread of this idea should not be converted into a raucous unseemly demonstration, but to a restrained, disciplined calm Hartal in the admirable Indian model.
We need to be wise. By spreading these serene and restrained thoughts, please help bring about the dawn of a secure, prosperous and virtuous future for this country, enabling the birth of a good generation of people, possessing a land fit to grow up in.
Please send your observations to: “Relief Service”, Gangaramaya, 61 Sri Jinaratana Road, Colombo 02.
I am 74 now. I may be able to live a few more years. We worked hard to offer this country something good, positive and beneficial. Some may not see it that way. I feel today in our country we do not have enough people to encourage us to strive and implement useful programmes for the wellbeing of our country.
My earnest wish is this: May wisdom, determination and courage dawn upon us to enable us to do our best. Please make up your mind not to go into the darkness from light.
May you, all the members of your family, your friends and relations, be healthy, wise, prosperous and happy in this New Year. May Unity reign supreme.
Please make a determination to lead a life as good husbands and wives within good families. With this will come happiness, solutions to problems relating to family unity, village development and the progress of our noble land.
What should the future be? Punishment for a crime and not forgiveness should be the solution. Abide by the law. What is going to be the future of our motherland, if those in the profession of law cannot protect the law, doctors are wanting in loving kindness and compassion and those who preach righteousness, are bereft of loving kindness and compassion?
We must think of the future of our Mother Land.
May all beings be happy and well!