Sunday Observer Online


Sunday, 16 August 2009





Marriage Proposals
Government Gazette

Myths, beliefs of Sri Lanka and the West

We are a part of a world society which accepted better beliefs and values of life based on our religious faiths intrinsically belonging to a peace loving group of countries in the world. Organised communities living and mixing with each other hoping their chances in life would be better, once calamities disappear are based on strong beliefs. Now the war is over, beliefs are highly centered as to how happily and peacefully people could live their lives accordingly.

Once the undesirable elements are removed in IDP camps where they are not wanted until rehabilitated, the prospects would be enhanced and a fresh keenness would develop, the ability and usefulness to serving each others purposes according to their beliefs becoming realities.

This belief is accepted as true. Conveying faith and having faith in the existence of beliefs are different from the beliefs that lead to revolt. Sri Lanka does not want any more calamities, any more conflicts. They would no doubt want to live in peace accordingly.

It had become pertinent to note very briefly that there are liberal democracies in the world like Australia where the society are generous and tolerant, eager to help specially towards new lawful arrivals and migrants provided they respect its laws and diversified culture which depicts true, real and honesty in all aspects of its populace of 140 different nationalities. Their destinies are considered as a power house towards prosperity. Its unbiased fair treatment and equal opportunities for all are known and synonymous throughout the world - the lucky country.

Therefore, that country is a fitting example how different nationalities live together with the majority in peace and harmony and those beliefs are deeply rooted in that society because they are united as one nation.

Briefly, Sri Lanka, one of Asia’s oldest civilisations, had got rid of one of its cruellest hard hearted enemies whose sheer determination was to destroy and prevent the existence of a united Sri Lanka. It did not believe the concept of peaceful co-existence among its communities as one nation.

During the period when calamities were an uphill battle, mothers left their little ones in the care of others, fathers went to war or other places for employment mostly in the Middle East. Their lifestyles changed altogether for better or worse. It is good that Government plans to restrict women with young children going overseas which has become a social problem.

Beliefs and believing are integral part of our life. Therefore, we cannot continue life without them. Strong beliefs can lead you to success. On the other hand, it could also lead you into difficulties.

Most Sri Lankans are blessed with strong beliefs that they would do the utmost to achieve them. Sri Lankan wives go out of the country as breadwinners to help family budgets, but sometimes those beliefs become shattered; not through any of their faults. Many women had fallen into disbelief that fate could be so cruel and hope that they would eventually succeed. More and more Sri Lankans pursue ‘duty’ rather than personal happiness in a marriage. Sri Lankan women live out their lives in devotion solely to their families because of their strong beliefs.

Beliefs are also very complicated. Their intricacy could only be understood or estimated after the plot is completed or rouse the interest and curiosity when the matter had almost come to a conclusion.

Asia’s old traditional civilization and its customary beliefs which revolve around its inhabitant’s daily life are unfathomable. Its basic nature belonging to a person’s behavioral patterns are intrinsically unpredictable.

Often, beliefs play a pivotal role in deciding whatever we want to do or don’t want to do.

Basically, we live our lives centered on beliefs and we believe most of the time we get the best. Everything we indulge in belongs to it. It is mind boggling to think how we live without believing or beliefs. Perhaps disbelieve? But then disbelieving itself is a belief.

It does not matter what the arguments are like. For or against because they all becomes beliefs. Next to our lives is there anything more important than beliefs? Perhaps eye sight, hearing, food, water or health. But they all have to go past beliefs. Don’t they? Beliefs also become different, interchangeable and exchangeable. It can be substituted like putting on fresh clothes or coverings, but that substitution too have to go through the same process... beliefs.

Students rights to communicate

So how do we stop this practice? Can a human being live without it, every blasted thing interconnected with this B .........?

Recently, there had been a tragedy concerning a young girl who took her life leaving us in a deep sorrow. She met with this disaster because it was not only her belief, but several beliefs of others that a mobile phone be bought. There would have been some communication problem between the students and the management that a solution could not be found, because if it was done in good nature, may be before prohibition of the use of mobile phones during school hours a must, a suggestion could have been made to the Government recommending public telephone booths may be installed within the school premises before the ban of mobile phones were announced. We need to believe that an emergency could happen during school hours. Sometimes making a call can be cumbersome or the phone line may be engaged on another call, but that does not mean that student’s rights to communicate with their parents can be taken away. There are some exceptional cases where doctors had recommended to carry a mobile phone by a student on medical grounds, in order to convey an urgent message or some urgent medication left behind.

There are also known cases who had obtained prior approval on medical grounds only to be used in a case of an emergency for such students who suffer acute asthma, different kind of fits or epilepsy patients. Until such time, the installation of public phones are installed in the school premises.

Our beliefs ought to be exactly genuine and they have to be loyal and faithful and cannot think to do something good or bad without a committed proper belief. If that belief is accurate and accepted standard most of the evils in society will become less.

When normal beliefs and mythical beliefs which may have originated in South India, becomes accustomed to a new situation there could be certain effects or feelings done by each to the other which can be difficult, preventing from expressing opinions freely. Although really both sides are short sighted with reality.

Beliefs revolving stories with puzzling crimes are matters that remain unexplained. Our mere existence founded on facts. We fail to fill those spaces we create through misunderstandings or mistakes simply because we underestimate the intelligence of others are unimportant. Beliefs are the main factors in a person’s life that remain obscure or unexplained in secrecy. Because one cannot exactly think the other person thinks. Then you are required to believe or disbelieve, still short of knowing what the other person’s inner beliefs are. Really, are we having a symbolic or hidden meaning when it comes to trust? It cause you to feel puzzled and often believe there could be more to it, than what has been said or explained ? People in Sri Lanka believe Asian people know more about future predictions than others through common study of the supposed influence of stars on human affairs. They believe they can foretell things better than Europeans or any other race. When people believe in certain things and are anxious when and whether or what period they could expect those predictions, those beliefs always centre on how happily one could live in this world happily.

When people go through hard times their past beliefs are not fulfilled in the present times they often think hard to reach with the union of God and believe in other ways of fulfilling those beliefs and desires by selecting their favourite systems such as astrology, fortune telling, tarot card reading, palmistry clairvoyance, psychic power and mystic power.

According to people who have had experiences for considerable period of time both in the West and East including other countries, the majority of people share the view that simply religions have nothing to do with these spiritual or psychic powers or specially palmistry readings. But although Horoscope readings are a product of the East, it had proven its credibility and value on human race by far the best answer to the Western mystery of Clairvoyance or tarot card readings which are read without even a pen or much fuss or significantly without dragging religion into it. Although the Western method does away with horoscope, one cannot doubt its accuracy if it is read by a qualified person as explained earlier.

However this writer is not trying hard to say which system is more superior than the other, but is written in good faith explaining a personal point of view and not intended to offend anyone.

Astonishing experiences

I have had some astonishing experiences and predictions which I like to share with other readers of this esteemed journal. After reading an advertisement in a local paper that this English lady, psychic clairvoyant who had read for the Royal household whom I wanted to meet, I made an appointment to see her which I did. As I entered her room when my turn came I noticed the simplicity of the surroundings. Inside the room on her table she had a pack of tarot cards and a cassette player. She also had a small glass bowl in front of her.

Those big Tarot cards which were bigger than normal playing cards had some strange mythical looking pictures and there an aura of mysticism and inspiring sense of mystery which filled with respect combined with fear and wonder. She narrated some awesome predictions which she taped on to a cassette and gave me to keep and was mystified and felt puzzled over her mythological power which she did without any fuss.

I am still puzzled after several years about her ability and how she got this power to herself.

Not too long after, another Aussie gentleman at a Sunday Fair as I passed him smiled and said ‘good day mate, aren’t you making a long trip soon? Taken aback at the comment I immediately saw a temporary board saying “ Believe your destiny ?”, “ He said please come in” This time it was different, he took a pack of cards and told me to shuffle which I did and told me to shuffle for the second time and divide the pack into three lots.

Thereafter, he said “take one pack and give it to me please”. I then responded. But my instincts and beliefs were still mixed. I knew what my immediate plans were. But, I thought how would he know? Yet to my surprise he said in a clear voice, “mate, you will be making a long trip.” After he dropped the fourth card from the pack which I had chosen and given to him to read my future, he went on “see this card and said the man who is rowing the raft is you”, and he pointed to a woman on the card who was carrying a little baby saying “that is your wife and son”. “You have one son don’t you? I nodded in agreement. The woman in the picture, who was sitting on the edge of the raft, had a veil over her head and the picture overall looked solitary. I believed wholeheartedly what I saw in the card. It looked sad. May be it was a place where others had not frequented, after which he said “you will do well and live by the water and lead a happy life” including many other things, and finally he said “you will come back and this will always be your home” These two very important incidents stand as supporting evidence of beliefs in people whom you had never met before.

As it stands, the conclusion to be made is that whatever the power the lady and the gentleman had was nothing to do with religion. That’s for sure.

There were no religious features or complex matters such as offering betel leaves, incense and josh sticks or offered prayers with the Western system.

But when it comes to dealing with Asian predictions, beliefs were mixed and total quantity of work goes for carrying out its religious activities very consciously. Towards the end, often very little has been achieved. There are no recordings that one could keep and listen to those future predictions in order to check their accuracy.

Beliefs when confronted with mystery readings can cause to feel puzzled. Even though your mind commands, the heart says,” don’t do it. Even though you summon enough courage that ‘will’ not be abandoned, the latter system causes an obstruction by listening to traditional tales containing beliefs about ancient times or natural events putting an imaginary symbolic of religious meanings to its proceedings. The head gear, flowers offered, the smell of josh sticks cause an inspiring sense of mystery, especially if the room is confined and no room to breathe. Sometimes the smoke that releases from the ‘dummala’ makes it difficult to breathe. It is not like the first system which is similar to going to see your doctor, However, in both systems, beliefs that you never knew or existed before starting to cloud your mind in puzzlement leads to wonder from where do they get this power from? Without getting into further quagmire of stupefaction, one could think lengthily about how mysteriously they go to the extent of recording those future predictions for future benefits.

Powers unknown

It must be then that power of being able to form our beliefs are unknown and could be forecasted without all the pomp, chicken neck breaking and sucking blood and other splendid ceremonials.

That ostentatious dignity of those people who conduct those ‘pujawas’ are all but big humbugs? Their self importance is devised to grab unsuspecting poor people whom they indoctrinate with false beliefs and manipulate the public who panic because what had been foretold before never eventuated or a different opposite situation had taken place in their lives, and wish to find out what more suffering they are supposed to go through? Manipulation of beliefs or urging to believe aided by ‘religious polypon fear’ is not considered as an offence under the law of Sri Lanka.

But if it is practiced elsewhere, it could cause a problem, under the rule of ‘unfair trading’.

It is a social evil and such people need more help from persons who are trained to help with social problems in order to save the poor people becoming easy prey to their unscrupulous methods of living in an organised community.

People or governments, however, are reluctant or scared to do something due to lack of legal basis to work out this social menace and mainly due to religious fear. They are allowed to predict things freely even though those very predictions are harmful to the country.

Those unfair predictions or writings construe to mould public opinions, thinking highly of their self importance, they become the real myths themselves and a burden to society as a whole.

It is widely held but superstitiously a wrong idea to think the man or woman who conduct those sessions could send a bad spell towards the ones who complain.

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