Dear reader, the Sunday Observer
welcomes your letters. Keep them brief, legible include the
name, address and contact number of the writer and mail them
to: ‘Letters’, The Sunday Observer, 35, D.R. Wijewardene
Mawatha, Colombo 10. Email:
Handwritten copies should be duly signed.
Make life meaningful
It is the duty of all members of the clergy to counsel and guide the
people to make life meaningful. This was also the advice to bhikkhus by
the Buddha. In material life, progress and satisfaction have to be
ensured and life qualitatively improved would be insecure without the
Dhamma. In the end what remains is existence – not desire or craving.
Most people end up in ruin. What reigns in this world today is lies and
deceit. the time is right to give up self-interest and realise the
inevitability of death. If the present state of affairs is permitted to
persist, in the end, one would find only the sick in the country and not
All should think of nurturing happiness, good health and pleasure.
Rulers need the help and guidance of the subjects. Which the latter
should honestly offer. Although one is entangled in difficulty, one must
not subject others to this same destiny. The country needs honest
Americans, even a few of them respect their race and national flag
and bow down before god, despite creating chaos for others. America is
of course amenable to criticism. Perhaps such criticism may be
meaningful to them.
In our country it is left to ourselves to reorient our own life
patterns. To begin with an austere life, elimination of waste,
cultivation, perseverance and preserving good health are priorities. Far
from celebrating Independence, we should examine whether we have real
freedom. Thievery reigns supreme affecting even the rural areas. The
problem of admitting children to schools could be halved, if pirivena
education is extended to children for Grade I.
Methods could be evolved to provide primary education to children in
places of religious worship. Daycare centres, pre-schools,
private-schools for those not admitted to schools, private tuition and
all that is there. Who would look into the predicament of parents who
had to forgo their money, time and labour? They should report to us
their problems.Sri Lanka enjoys free education and free health
facilities, we may proudly claim.
Workers are entitled to the most number of holidays. A country where
people work only for three out of eight hours, cannot be developed.
Commitment on the part of the clergy is important to persuade adherents
on the right track, rather than spreading the doctrine. When a person is
convicted in a court of law, the priest in charge of his place of
worship should also be summoned as a respondent to convince him of his
responsibilities as well. The clergy should not remain apathetic to the
decline of morals and values. Religious leaders in villages bear the
responsibility to protect the village and eventually the country.
Ven. Galboda Gnanissara Thera,
(Podihamuduruwo of Gangaramaya),
Pensioner widow and widowers
There are so many government pensioners, who have become widows or
widowers, after their spouses have passed away. Due to this, these
category of pensioners have become desperate and lonely, as they have no
one to care or help them in their sunset years.
It will be a great relief, if the government would allow these
pensioners’ pension payments, to be continued to be paid to a widow or a
widower, in case of the particular pensioner death, if he or she
Of course, the government could deduct a certain percentage (Say,
about 10%) towards the W & OP fund, from these category of pensioners’
monthly pension payments.
Hope, the government would consider this matter sympathetically and
allow these category of widow or widower pensioners, the facility to
have some sort of happiness in the evening of their lives, who had
contributed much to the welfare of the nation, while they were in
government service, in their youthful days, even serving in remote
areas, far away from their families, for long periods.
In fact, President, J.R. Jayewardene wanted to implement this
proposal, but owing to the intervening terrorist disturbance at that
time, it was not implemented.
Now, as the country is enjoying peace, the present government could
implement this scheme, so that it may be a source of happiness to these
lonely elder widow or widower pensioners, in their old age, with the
good blessing of the present government.