23 June, 2017

Kuragala Lessons 2: Using PR To Obliterate Heritage

By Darshanie Ratnawalli

Darshanie Ratnawalli

I surmise that Dennis McGilvray came into the orbit of the Aboosally family through his researches into the matrilineality of the Tamil and Muslim communities of the east coast of Sri Lanka. M.L.M Aboosally’s wife came from the matrilineal east coast town of Kalmunai[i]. My hypothesis is that on the strength of these connections, this American scholar was hired by the Aboosally family to write a PR article on Dafther Jailany. What confirms this hypothesis is the fact that he wrote a PR article[ii] based on the client’s book; Aboosally M.L.M: 2002. Dafther Jailany: A Historical Account of the Dafther Jailani Rock Cave Mosque.

The client brief he received was to negate the fact that there ever was a Buddhist layer in the site. This he executed in 2004 saying “There are Brahmi inscriptions at Jailani dating to the second century aca, but they appear to assert territorial claims by local political chieftains. According to Aboosally (2002: 62-3) there is no evidence that the site was ever dedicated to the Buddhist Sangha.”

McGilvray makes this statement as a footnote to “The Archaeology Department nevertheless erected a permanent trilingual signboard near the Jailani mosque, also visible today, stating that the location, known as Kuragala was the site of a Buddhist monastery dating to the second century BCE.”

In 2013, a journalist called Latheef Farook would execute the same client brief by making a statement strikingly similar; “The 1971 version (of the inch map) depicts the area only as a Buddhist monastery of the 2nd century BC (the only evidence of which is a board placed by the Archaeological Department in 1972.)”. Note however that unlike McGilvray and Aboosally, Farook (either through ignorance[iii] or an intention to deceive) keeps the Brahmi inscriptions relentlessly out of the picture.

As to McGilvray, the awkward term ‘aca’ that he has used after second century gives us a clue to his lack of familiarity with the ancient period. It should have been either BC (Before Christ), BCE (Before Common Era) or if he wanted to be esoteric and use Latin, ACN (Ante Christum Natum) or AC. Given this lack of familiarity, McGilvray would if he was writing a research article, have depended on an expert source. Since it was a PR article however, the client (Aboosally: 2002) served as his sole reference. It is on the strength of this reference that Dennis McGilvray made the startling contribution to the study of the ancient period of Sri Lanka’s history; by seeming to assert that 2nd century BC Lankans were still a cave people; that they asserted territorial claims to their caves by writing in the Brahmi script on the cave wall things like “The cave of lord Punaśaguta, son of the chief Soṇa” and “The cave of datta [and] of Samudda.” Just like animals asserted territorial claims to their caves with spoor markings, just like cavemen asserted such claims with totems and cave paintings, the literate cave people of 2nd Century BC Lanka had their own way. Geddit Watson?

Under what circumstances and for what reason would a non cave dwelling people (such as the 200 BC Lankans) consider caves as territory? A scholar with any intellectual vigour, notwithstanding his lack of familiarity with the ancient period would have wondered. Dennis McGilvray did not. A true investigator would have then sought knowledge from a more competent source than Aboosally. McGilvray did not.

The Brahmi inscriptions at Kuragala do not contain the term ‘given to the Sangha’ (See Inscriptions of Ceylon Vol I Plate Numbers 774, 775, 776 or the digitized record 1 and digitized record 2. Aboosally who was not an archeologist concluded from this that ‘there is no evidence that the site was ever dedicated to the Buddhist Sangha’. The Director General, Department of Archeology declared openly that this was a Buddhist Monastery in the second century BC. Obviously there was a context here that Aboosally was missing. A scholar would have tried to find it. McGilvray did not.

If McGilvray had gone to Sigiriya, he would have discovered another interesting fact. Trilingual boards placed there by the Department of Archaeology identify Sigiriya as a 2nd century BC Buddhist Monastery too. Yet not a single one of the seven Sigiriya cave inscriptions contains the word ‘Sangha’ (Published in Inscriptions of Ceylon Vol I, digitized record available here. These inscriptions read; ‘The cave of Sala, the dealer in tamarinḍ, and of the courtesan, Tosā; ‘son of the chief Kaḍi’: ‘The cave of Abhijit, son of the chief Tiri’; ‘The cave of the chief Naguli’; ‘The cave of Brahmadatta, son of the chief Tissa’; ‘The cave which is a co-donation of the lay-devotee Uttara, and the female lay-devotee Tissā’; ‘The cave of the lay-devotee Uttata’.

What would McGilvray have concluded from these assertions of ‘territorial claims’ to caves? Did the people of 2nd Century Lanka dwell in caves or did they simply use caves for recreation? Would a tamarind dealer and courtesan owning a cave together have suggested to McGilvray and Aboosally the possibility of fertility rituals being practiced in these caves? How would McGilvray read the fact that the Department of Archeology rejected all these interesting possibilities and settled for the mundane explanation that these are donative records to the monastic Buddhist Church? Would McGilvray conclude that the Department lacked scintillating intellects like M.L.M Aboosally or that Aboosally needed more educating on the early Brahmi inscriptions of Lanka?

If these cave inscriptions with the term ‘given to the sangha’ missing had been the sole representatives of the early Brahmi lithic record of Lanka, better scholars than McGilvray and Aboosally may have speculated on the possibility that the 2nd/3rd century BC Lanka was home to a cave dwelling people who could also write. As things are there has been no room for such speculation, because we have a huge body of such early Brahmi cave inscriptions (1234 were published by Paranavithana in Inscriptions of Ceylon Vol 1, some were published later and some remain unpublished) packed into a startlingly short time span (3rd century BC to 1st Century AD). The majority of these inscriptions clarify their purpose by the term ‘given to the sangha’. The entire body is considered as a single complex linked to the introduction of Buddhism to Sri Lanka in 3rd century BC[iv].

The Aboosally’s PR drive to dissociate Kuragala Brahmi inscriptions from the Buddhist order and reposition it as a ‘territorial claim’ continues. Consider the telltale term ‘territorial claim’ appearing in Dharisha Bastian’s presentation; “Large crowds of Buddhists with a territorial claim, encountering large crowds of Muslim pilgrims with a historic claim of their own…”

*The writer can be found at http://ratnawalli.blogspot.co.uk/


[i] Refer to McGilvray’s footnote 11; “I would speculate that the assertiveness and independence of mind shown by the Chief Trustee’s wife, an educated woman from the matrilineal east coast town of Kalmunai, may have had an impact on the way women are currently incorporated into the Jailani celebrations.”

[ii] Scroll down the list of references and footnotes in this article. Notice that Aboosally:2002 has been used as the sole and overriding authority on all matters archaeological relating to Kuragala. Allow your amazement to carry you to its inevitable conclusion.

[iii] Almost delusional levels of ignorance pertaining to the History of Sri Lanka is far from uncommon among Sri Lankans specially of a certain vintage. In the comments section of an earlier article, my attempts to clarify a point by quoting from “Passage to India? Anuradhapura and the Early Use of the Brahmi Script:R.A.E. Coningham, RR. Allchin, CM. Batt & D. Lucy: Cambridge Archaeological Journal 6:1 (1996), pp. 73-97” was violently contested by a gentleman named Mohammed Asghar Hussain who continued to insist throughout the entire length of the comments section that Robin Coningham was an Orientalist scholar of the late 19th century or the early 20th century. One can’t discount the possibility that Coningham was an Orientalist scholar in his previous birth. But in this life he was part of a Sri Lankan-British team of archaeologists who conducted excavations in Anuradhapura from 1989 and discovered a very large number of inscribed potsherds with Brahmi writing going back to the fourth century BCE. (Read Indrapala: 2005; p 138). Coningham et al: 1996 was the publication which resulted from those excavation s. Since Mohammed Asghar Hussain also claimed to be familiar with the ‘sayings’ of Sudarshan Seneviratne and Neera Wickramasinghe, I surmise that he is a gentleman who took to history late in life, (after the mind had hardened into a rigid mould) for an agenda and not through a thirst for knowledge.

[iv] Coningham et al. 1996; “…in Pataliputra, the thera  [Buddhist elder] Moggaliputta

directed that Mahinda, the son of the Emperor Asoka, should be sent to Sri Lanka to convert the king, Devanampiya Tissa, and his people to Buddhism (Mahavamsa XII, 7). This tradition can be substantiated by Asoka’s thirteenth major rock edict stating

that he had sent envoys carrying Dhamma [righteous law] to the southern lands of the Colas, Pandyas and as far as Tamraparni [Sri Lanka] (Thapar 1961, 256).

Furthermore, this appears to correlate with the fact that hitherto the earliest evidence of writing in Sri Lanka has been the Brahmi inscriptions recording the donations of caves to the Sangha [Buddhist order] (Fig. 3). Agreement has been shared by archaeologists

as well as by palaeographers and historians: “it is possible to draw an inference that the Brahmi script of the oldest inscriptions of Ceylon was introduced by Buddhist missionaries who came to the Island in the time of Asoka. (Paranavitana 1970, xxiii).

“The next phase at Anuradhapura, although possessing several elements in common with its predecessor, was of Mauryan derivation. During the reign of Asoka ca. 250 BC, Buddhism was introduced to Ceylon in association with other attributes such as the art of writing in Brahmi script.”(Deraniyagala 1972, 50)”

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    great work ! Proud of you as a Sri Lankan.

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    methodically laid down.

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    Dharshanie just tried to prove that Every Sri Lankan – buddhist knows. At one point or the other every inch of Sri Lanka had a buddhist monastry.

    Even to date some mosques are built on the lands owned by the Buddhist temples.

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      And the Buddhist ‘synagogues’ were built on Hindu ‘Mosques’ and the Hindu mosques were built on Voodoo ‘Kirk’.

      By courtesy of The Darshanie formula.

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    Abala-vābara Salaha
    leṇe vesāya Tosa ca
    The cave of Sala, the dealer in tamarinḍ, and of the courtesan, Tosā.

    I like that Prakrit vesāya does not the same connotations of the modern vesi

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      That was obvious from the cave of Sallala and the Chee-Giriya’s visi-vasi vesi’s booby frescoes. Nowadays the common youth has a parlance among them colloquially calling by name ‘Tosa’ for a Tart, which could be traced back to this courtesan ‘Tosa’.

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        Surely, Thosa is ‘Thasi’ (the subordinate one)

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      Probably the tamarind dealer was an Arab from Morocco named ‘Salah’ who was resident of the ‘Gal Lena’. Out of a ‘len-gathukama’ for the ‘Thosa’ supplying girls from the vicinity he was on a rampage of a prowl on the girls, thus his escapades was well preserved by the blind Buddhist scribes on the walls in the way of ‘Kurutu Gee’. Afterall, who does not ‘toss’ away a ‘Tosa’ after the kernel was eaten.

      Note: Was it not that Robert Knox was captured under a Tamarind tree?

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      Was Kurutu Gee written in Brahmi????

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    I have a copy of McGilvray’s 2004 article in front of me as I write. The nonsense about “aca” is not there. At all. In the passage cited, and in the accompanying footnote, McGilvray (who makes absolutely no claims of his own about the Buddhist archaeological arguments but makes it clear he is merely quoting Aboosally) uses the standard BCE.

    So either your author has never looked at McGilvray’s article. Or she has some eyesight difficulties. In any case it’s nice to know the old tradition of reading interlinear inscriptions invisible to others is alive and well in Sri Lankan archaeology. The suggestion that McGilvray was “hired” as a PR suggests a rather breathtaking ignorance of his standing as a serious scholar and researcher. Ignorance and fantasy.

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      Hon Aboosally, MP was a politician not a historian!

      I like Tamilnet’s etymology approach to simplify matters into village names.

      Kuragala is made up of (K + Ura + Gala).

      Ura means pig
      Gala means rock
      K means K.

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        KURA = KURA(VAR). A normadic tribe who speak Tamil, telugu, Sinhala and another language which can be understood by them only,

        Kura +Gala—> Hill of Kuravar.

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          Tamil was not spoken here in the past. There are NO Tamil inscriptions!

          Given the rivalry, and the absence of UNHRC means there was no chance for such a possibility in the past.

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            hahaha.. No Tamil inscriptions in Sri lanka?

            The Galle inscription is in Tamil, Sanskrit and Chinese. No Sinhala there.

            How is that?

            What is the language of the Kuragala or Sigiriya inscriptions? Not in Sinhala!

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              The Galle inscription was not Sri Lankan. It was established in Sri Lanka by outsiders because there were no Tamil, Persian and Chinese speakers to guide the ships!!

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              All characters of Sinhala is exactly Malayalam, and little from Thai. The Thai interlude was a Thai prince arrived with Javanese forces in Jaffna to rob of the ‘Denta Datu’ in Kandy not knowing it was false. The Javanese forces had a powerful stronghold in Jaffna (Ja Pana, Javakachery etc. etc.) and intermingled even in the south with the local civics whose progeny still look alike the carrying teh JavDNA here and there among Lankan societies.

              Also the fact Buvenaka Bahu da 6 was a malayalee named Chempaha Perumal (if Sinhalized ‘Champika Premalal’)who drove away the red-capped gujarati King Aryachakraborty from YalPanam was a fact. Chempaha was commanding the forces of Kotte King ParaKumban prior to handling ‘YalPanam’. Thus ‘Yalpanam’ became a ‘yalpanapu’ story of the Sinhalese.

              And again, the Buvaneka Bahu da 7 was helping the Portuguese against the Mapla Muslims of Kerala, when they challenged the Portuguese in 1525, regardless of the fact that the Sinhalese had long standing trade relations with Kerala. In 1526, again on the Portuguese advice, Buvaneka Bahu expelled the resident Muslim traders from Kotte. In 1527, Mayadunne attacked Buvaneka Bahu with the aid of the Samudri of Calicut. All the Kings & their lots had Kerala connections and in literacy and alphabetically Malayam (Modern Malayalam was inebriated with ‘Sans-krit’ by ‘Elu-ttacchan’ the friend of Sri Chitral Tirunal of Travancore just only 200 years before)was instilled into Sinhala was a forgotten matter to the Sinhalese.

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          See it in another perspective, Gala = Gals’ backside (modern Sinhala slang), now you imagine what is ‘Kura’ in your own etymology.

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          The place-name most likely came from “Guragala, where “Gura” (ගුර, ගුරා), or “Guru” refers to any type of hermit or holy person who also practices healing or engage in village rites and rituals. In Tamil we have the word ‘Kurural’ corresponding to the Sinhala “Gururaala”. The word “Guru” is of Parkrit origin and came into old Tamil. The word “Guru” is a prakrit form that came into old Tamil during the early Sangam period.

          It is probably incorrect to claim that the “kura” in kuragala comes from the Dravidian ‘Kuravar” caste, and KuraGala is the hill of Kuravar. This is very unlikely, since “low-caste” nomadic groups were never allowed to occupy high-lying lands. Those tribes who settled (in the outskirts of towns – (p)ur – added the ur-prefix and) were known as urk-kuravar ஊர்க்குற வர

          see http://dh-web.org/place.names/#Kuragala

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            ‘KURA’ (Webra Corymbosa) is a sacred tree to Tamil Hindus.

            ‘GALA’ (singular) and ‘GAL’ (plural) in Sinhala, meaning rock or rocky hill in the context of place names, is an obvious cognate of Tamil / Dravidian ‘KAL’.

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              The word ‘Kura’ is derived from the word ‘AyKura'(Arukula) of the Malayalis. Bur again, in Balangoda there’s no sea, but the Udawalawe of Kaltota.

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            Chandre:
            KURA GALA cannot be GURA GALA. If GURA become KURA, there must be a Tamil element there because no “B” in Tamil.

            Further in the old days these caves had the chances of being abodes for the out castes too.

            Can you expalin about the abodes of Rodiyas and about them? They too occupy the HILLS and FORESTS.

            Further the Hindu saint Arunagiri of 10th century called the second consort Valli of Muruga(Kataragama Deiyo) as KURA MAKAL(daughter of Kuravar). So, dont try to bend it to Sinhala.

            GURU is a Sanskrit word too. Sanskrit is the language of Hindu religion.

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            People do we even know when Kuragala even came into popular usage?

            And I have two examples from an article appearing in the Tamil Sangam Web page

            01. Kalutara- Kallu thurai. Kallu as in rocky thurai as in harbour

            02. Welli gama- Welli as in outer “gama” kamam- village

            Up to the experts to comment

            Gundu Babu

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              The rock Kuragala is not precisely named to a specific rock or a cavern or is named to a specific area of land or called so. The place in question is within the vicinity of ‘Tenna’ (popularly known as Tanjantenna).

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        Real scholars read the original. McGilvray is not responsible for typos on other people’s websites, and sensible critics pick on matters of substance.

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          She may be a graduate student.

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          From her style of writing I knew that she was Cherry picking and now it is confirmed. All her articles are 100% Sinhala biased. Even though she says she has a thirst for knowledge, as a journalist, all her research is one sided (Sinhala biased). I am sure she is working with a hidden agenda or actually working for someone with a racist agenda. These are the people who suppress the truth and manipulate everything to their advantage. First of all such unqualified biased journalists should not be allowed to abuse the history of our land misguide the masses with wrong ideas and beliefs. There are enough of gullible out there who will take all the rubbish written by this biased journalist as gospel truth. Instead of uniting the people of Sri Lanka these racist journalists are dividing them.

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            One one those ‘online’ graduates as you have suggested elsewhere Leela?

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            Mohamed – Leave this woman alone.
            She an immature paid writer (any fool can see that).
            After her last pathetic baseless bogus article none of the Muslim commenters commented here.
            She probably working with this social virus LEELA who posts under varous Pseudonyms, (to name a few – Jimsofty, sivanandan, Kris, KA Sumanasekera, American Mama so on).

            The best thing is to ignore these anti-social elements intead of giving publicity for them.

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              Jackass

              For the last time I am NOT Leela

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        Darshanie,

        The original article can be accessed at:

        http://www.colorado.edu/anthropology/people/bios/documents/McGilvray2004JailaniaSufiShrineinSriLanka.pdf

        Your reference to ‘aca’ under note no. 20 can be found on page 287 of the original article. The original article states BCE. So, this is not some awkward term as you claim.

        Try using the educationist Malcolm Adiseshiah’s approach on quoting original articles.

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          As a response, I’d like to quote end note ii of this article

          [ii] Scroll down the list of references and footnotes in this article. Notice that Aboosally:2002 has been used as the sole and overriding authority on all matters archaeological relating to Kuragala. Allow your amazement to carry you to its inevitable conclusion.

          My inevitable conclusion therefore is that McGilvray’s is a PR article and the best place to read a PR article is in the client’s portal, in this case Jailani.org. This is where it truly belongs.

          However in fairness to McGilvray, I will change my wording in a future article to read something like;As to the Aboosallies, the awkward term ‘aca’ that appears at the end of ‘second century’ in their version of McGilvray’s article gives us a clue that the Aboosallies are not reliable dispensers of knowledge specially when it comes to the ancient period of Sri Lankan history. As to McGilvray his lack of familiarity with this period is indicated by his ignorance of any other source except M. L.M Aboosally for the interpretation of the early Brahmi cave inscriptions of Lanka.

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            Let’s think about the headline to this shoddy piece which contrasts “heritage” to “PR”. McGilvray is a distinguished authority on Muslim society in Sri Lanka, and his piece is a contribution to our knowledge of that topic. It is not a comment on archaeology. Kurugala is an extraordinary site and a very rich part of Sri Lankan heritage, but what has made it so special is its role as a place of devotion to generations of Muslims. In this author’s worldview, Muslims can have no “heritage”, and I would add, there is nothing that could be thought of as “Sri Lankan” heritage.

            This area in Sabaragamuva is quite rich in archaeological remains, many of which – like the Budugala site on the plain below Kurugala itself – are much more complex and interesting than the two inscriptions at Kurugala. But no one is making big claims about their importance, for the simple reason that there are no Muslims living in their vicinity.

            The PR argument was always a shabby one, and this shameless footnote indicates just how feeble the author’s argument is.

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            After getting caught red handed with her pants down, now she is trying to twist, turn and manipulate to cover up her blunder. It’s too late darling, now you look like a cat that crapped on the (Kuragala) rock. There is nothing left for you to cover up.

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            Dharshani miss,
            You have got caught no, putting your hand into not knowing stuff. See, it is not like reading our own Sinhala paper; my favourite is Lakbima; I like it because of the tabloid section, deshiya no. See in Sinhala you can say anything and no one will catch and scold you. But you are writing internet no? So you be careful. Even white fellows are writing back and that is bad for Sinhala Buddhism, ne?

            I saw your picture here no and I am thinking pretty girl, then I am thinking good brains also. Then I seeing you are telling you are model for cosmopolitan. I ask paththara Malli and he says must be new cook book with Cos and pol mallun eating.

            But if you come in my Lakbima tabloid I will fall all over you even if it is embracing to you. You are so shweet! Everytime I am thinking Kuragala I am thinking of you only because you say nise things about the gala.

            I think Muslim people are having bad time with you noe? Anyway you are giving them nicely good good. We must somehow take Kuragala from them, what Shrine for them, even if they were here before us, we are very power pull, so we can take it. Good thing there were letters kottala on the rock. In Pali da?

            Once we chase them away, even Dr. chandre is saying its all lies, we can build a big duplicate of Ruwanweli seya. Every year one festival with one hundred elephants we can have? By the way you think which god was there? Maybe saman deyiyo? You find out, you are good at finding and writing nice stories like Kuragala and I am reading you from top to bottom your article. In vain nice story must be because a bit hard to understand.

            Actually I am reading because of your picture, if I tell you I understand I am only telling lies, not like you and I no like telling lies even woman lady

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            Darshanie,

            “Scroll down the list of references and footnotes in this article. Notice that Aboosally:2002 has been used as the sole and overriding authority on all matters archaeological relating to Kuragala. Allow your amazement to carry you to its inevitable conclusion.”

            I agree with you. Can I have your phone numba?

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        We are sorry, the comment language is English – CT

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      Oh My,

      Dharshanie lieing ?

      OR just got some one to do it for her.

    • 0
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      To Darshanie, ignorance is a bliss of which she couldn’t afford forfeit it.

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    Very well said. A great deal of research has gone into it for sure.

    Thank you very much for bringing these facts.

    Truth has triumphed over myth.

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      …and myth prevails.

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    All the inscriptions need to be published with their deciphered analysis. Bits of the early record, as well as Sigiri griffiti should be included in schoo text-books at the O-level so that people do not get baited by silly concocted myths.

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      Sigiri Kasyappa,whose mother was a Tamil Pallava Princess. Bhikku Mahanama, the author of Mahavansa, came from Kanchipuram of Tamil nadu. He was the uncle of Kasyappa.

      The above facts too added to the lessons!

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        So, the Monk Mahanama, a Tamil was anti-Tamil ?

        Just like Pabakaran who slaughtered Tamils.

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          No.. His Tamil relatives refused to help his nephew Kasyappa. But they helped other relative Moggalana to get the throne with the same Tamil army!

          Sinhalese cannot make a Sinhala Buddhist claim over Bhikku Mahanama.

          Prabhakaran’s father was a Malayali and not a Tamil!

          Further we cannot compare the OLD wars of kings to the current language problems which were created by the Christian rulers.

          No King in the old days fought for Tamil or Sinhala!

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            This guy is inventing new history from thin air. Hey, Leela aka M.Sivananthan,

            have you gone insane?

            Can you produce some kind of source to confirm/prove that Kasyappa and Bhikku Mahanama are Tamils?

            Malayali’s are highly civilized people. Can you produce some kind of relaible source to say Prabhakaran’s father was a Malayali (other than what a mad woman in Kerela just like you claimed without any records).

            Don’t invent rubbish man. You seem to be not second to this Darshanie Ratnawalli in inventing rubbish from thin air.

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              He is a lunatic.
              He is trying his best to show that sivanandan and jimiya two people. Two days ago he tried this style with another article with an other fake name of his – Lester.
              He is same as his master MR who says ‘MONKS & BUDDHIST HAVE NEVER BEEN EXTREMISTS’ (Courtesy – Another media news today). Yes true but who made the Monk terrorists? This LEELAS and Perci/nandasenaGota. Who else.

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              Kassyapa = Kasippuva
              Mahanama = Makku Naaman

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              You are a Muslim who speak Tamil but tell “I am not a Tamil”. That kind of people cannot understand Mahavansa or Chula vansa of Sri lanka.

              Further Prabhakaran’s father and his Grand father Thiruvengadam came from Kollam, Kerala. I talked to Veluppillai as well. So, dont show your limited knowledge!

              Dont you know a proverb in Kerala? “malayali oru kolaiyaali”. ( Malayali is a killer)

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            Remember, Kasyappar became a Christian. (It was in his time that Christianity started to flourish in ‘Sorun dipa’).

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        Sorry, there was no Tamil Nadu at that time. All the Kanchipuram kings
        liked fair-skinned North Indian Girls, and all their queens were non-Dravidian fair-skinned North Indian women.Many of the later chola kings had North Indian links. So there is a lot of mixing, and the Kshtrioya caste was almost North Indian. This is a very interesting point that needs to be further researched. However, the ordinary people were brown-skinned locals.
        With time there was further mixing.

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    Conspiracy theories galore in place of objective evidence and facts. You cannot base an entire civilisation on a couple of stone inscriptians. Lets leave it to the department of archealogy to unearth more findings and put the pieces together.

    I too am praying and meditating in my home, does not make this a historical site or sacred area? Tell us more about the people who lived there, their culture, language, occupations, numbers, origins etc. Otherwise we must hand it over to the descendents of the Balangoda man, the Veddahs who are now an endangered species.

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    What was the original name of the rock? Kura means roof in Tamil, and the rock serves as the roof of the mosque, most Muslims in Sri Lanka speak Tamil, did the name kuragala originate recently?

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      KURA is not ROOF in Tamil.

      KOORAI( கூரை )is the word for roof!

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        A Fart is a Fart but it lets out with different music Kura and Koorai is same.

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          ….. and Kurakkan is not the same alike Percival kuduwa.

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          You are a Muslim with a limited knowledge. That is the problem. Did you get your education in a Madrasa or the grade seven Muslim teachers who were appointed to Muslim schools after 1957?

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        Kooru is Prick, not the blunt one.

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    Perhaps Darshanie should be more vigilant with her source material. Leon is absolutely right, see:
    http://www.academia.edu/3157727/Jailani_A_Sufi_Shrine_in_Sri_Lanka

    Casts some doubt on the credibility of her research – she based her opinion of the author on this typo (probably) error. OMG! She can’t make mistakes like this if she wants to be taken seriously.

    I think we should get beyond “who was here first” and move towards “to whom is it most relevant” right now. That to my mind would be the sanest and most intelligent & civilized approach. Also there is a thing called ‘sharing’ too!

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    Excellent way to conclude Part 1, Darshanie. If archeology is your cup of tea, I encourage you to do a (future) piece on the origins of the Kaaba. A bit of a stretch from Kuragala, but sure to ignite a firestorm. You might even consider a documentary, although you’d have to go into hiding afterwards.

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      Hi Lester,

      I was expecting you at https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/cattle-slaughter-and-self-immolation/ since June 1, 2013 8:13 am. :D

      As for you ka’ba igniting a firestorm clue, don’t forget that Abraham didn’t live in 6th or 7th century A.D. and that the monotheistic God was one and the same in all ancient scriptures all over the world throughout history, except for the distortions into polytheistic functional agents and idolatry of ordinary humans. So rare similarities shouldn’t feed your fantasy. On the other hand, the origin of certain oriental ideologies and cultural symbols and architecture from rooted in the other oriental counterparts itself will be of great enlightenment for the rest of humanity :D

      Anyway i’m more interested in meeting the science advocate Lester than the pseudo-historian here. Let’s meet on the thread, the weekend is over :D

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        correction: Let’s meet on the other thread, the weekend is over :D

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      Lets excavate as a preamble from your doule-cheeks.

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    The history of Sri lankan Muslims are not written by Muslims earlier,so Tamils and Sinhalese written the history of Muslims as they need.Muslims origin go back to the pre-Vijaya invasion.when Gautama Buddha’s first visit to Sri Lanka,he has converted the Yakka and Naga people,but some people never converted to Buddhism.and later many of them embraced the Islam upon arrival of Islam by Arab & South Indian traders.(some Arab traders do married to local Sinhalese women’s).most of the Muslims are native Sri Lnkans.when Vijaya came to Sri lanka Kuweni was there and her language was Tamil.Sinhalese race were begin with the arrival of Vijaya.(Vijaya’s parents are Sinhabahu and his Sister).Hinduism largely influenced the Buddhism.Many Hindus are converted to Buddhism after 15th century.(the last king of Sri Wicrama Rajasinha was a South Indian Hindu).the half of Sri Lankans are South Indian origin,even our First President from South India.(Great grand parent of J.R.Jayawardena from South India).if we go to debate the real owner of our Motherland,it’s not belong to non of us.so realize the ground reality,our existence and live/let-live in peace.

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      Aryan:

      According to the history or anthropology you write, Muslims are also like Tamils.

      They both had lived when dinosaurs were living.

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      Muslims origin go back to the pre-Vijaya invasion…

      Vijaya invaded Sri Lanka in 543 BC, more than 2000 years ago. Islam is only 1400 years old. So how can the Muslims origin go back to a time when Islam didn’t even exist?

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        ah.. lester with numbers :D

        why say vijaya invaded lanka? wasn’t he expelled for what he was with half his head shaved and found exile in lanka? by muslim origin he refers to the arab connection – arab merchants and travellers knew the existence of the island, and the people that converted eventually as islam reached the shores of the island centuries later. read a comment fully before you unleash your fantasy. let me help you: if you are to dispute of anything, then it is about if arabs really had settled during that time, not with the silly numbers that run in your head :D and please come back to https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/cattle-slaughter-and-self-immolation/

        btw, is north korea now a member of UN? :D

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        Vijaya was not a Buddhist,same way before convert to Islam, lived is Sri lanka(majority Muslims).when colonialists invade our country on 15th century no single Christian lived in Sri Lanka,but many Buddhists and Hindus were embraced/convert to Christianity for many reasons but not Muslims.you could not deny them as native Sri Lankans,same way Muslims do.don’t talk nonsense.(When first census were conducted in Sri Lanka,there were 224000 Mulsims).

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          “Sri Lankan” Muslims are low-caste Tamils who converted to Islam.

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            If Kuweni and those people lived before the invasion of Vijaya were low-cast Tamils,then some of convert could be Tamil Hindus(most of the early converts are Naga people).but last two decades alone 83327 people convert to Islam in Sri Lanka.( you could not say all of them are low-cast Tamils,but majority of of them are Buddhists and Hindus).and more over there is no any cast system in Islam.we treat them all as equal human beings.

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              there is no any cast system in Islam.we treat them all as equal human beings.

              Nonsense; Quran says slavery is okay. The status of a woman in Islam is only one step above that of a slave.

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            …. of whom some bruised your back.

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            I wish all Tamils convert to Islam not just in the Eastern Province and Colombo city but everywhere in the island and Tamil Nadu.

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            remember the story by David Blacker:
            Baby ostrich to mother ostrich: “Ooh, mummy, look what I discovered! If you stick your head in the sand like me, we won’t be able to see all those naughty nasty lions like Blacker and Wijeyapala, and if we both talk loudly to each other, we won’t hear them laughing at us either!”

            :D :D :D

            why don’t you answer questions now? :D

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            and “low-caste Tamils” is also a derogatory term Lester? :D will that help you sleep tonight?

            coz now i read that for you “three wheeler drivers” and “orphans” are lesser people too :D (at https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/working-women-should-be-sexually-molested/)

            In islam it doesn’t matter which cast you come from or which color you belong to? Hurt you to learn? There is always a place for one more person Lester, regardless who they are now. A lot of Lesters too found comfort in there in the end. :D

            And nobody denies that people converted to islam (and still converting to) from all backgrounds. In the case of Sri Lankan muslims that not all of them have an arabic lineage is a documented fact :D only difference is you think the trunk is the whole elephant.

            btw when are you returning to our conversation at https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/cattle-slaughter-and-self-immolation/? it’s been more than three days now :D

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        ahha lester ,,u r just a kid , islam is only 1400 years old ? ur kidding . adam , Noah , Ebrahim , Mosus , Jesus all are prophets muslim prophets sent by 1 and only god allah , btw first man adam and eve descended from heaven to sri lanka (serendib ) he was a muslim , so can we argue that the world belongs to muslims ?

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    Kura comes from Kura-payya which is the pouch which the Lebbes and Yogis carried on the side to carry Aggala spiced with ginger when climbing Adams Peak to keep them warm.If not try this one. It is not Kuru-gala. it is Kuru-gala, Elephant rock.

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    So it is Aboosally who declared that there is no Buddhist connection with Kuragala. He is the great scholar McGilvry’s quotes as authority. That speaks about McGrilvy’s great scholarship!So according to Aboosally all claims about early Brahmi inscriptions being Buddhist is all ‘pacha.’That is why McGilvry, the great scholar did not even refer to Collin’s paper where the details of the Brahmi inscriptions were presented. So did Latheef Farook omit to mention him. But Lo! Farook basing on Aboosally says Govt. Agent Hellings (1909)records in his Diary that Kuragala was a Muslim place. But look. Hellings Diary is very clear that he did not ever visit Kuragala. Where did these people get the information that he did. What does one call it. An inexactitude!That will avoid using other nomenclatures. Collins goes out. Hellings [who never said anything about Kuragala in the quoted Diary] is substituted. Are these the great authorities? McGilvry lived too long in the Ganjam districts studying/writing about Sufis and others. Even researchers need support. That is well known.

    Why McGilvry is quoted even about [Swami]Mohiydeen who became a great heeler (‘Polle-veda’ who exorcised devils by hitting with a cane) and performed other heeling miracles before his following in Jaffna. He finally had a following in America and died there and has a shrine dedicated to him there.Mohiydeen who was at home once appeared in a temple reclining where the Hindu deity was. That was like Swami Vivekananda’s Guru “Tiger Swami, Gauri-bala” who could appear in different places. So some people question Buddha’s visits to the island but believe Mohiydeen’s power to appear in a different places at the same time.Ha ,ha, ha! Anyway that is the crowd who Quote McGilrvry.

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    Lester,
    Please hear this from the horse’s mouth. Islam started the day Allah created Adam not 1400 years ago. Ask any Muslim (2 billion Muslim around the world give you the same answer). Islam is an Arabic word originated from Salam. Salam
    means Peace. People attain peace by submitting their free will according to Devine wish. when Adam was created Allah ordered him not to eat fruit from the tree. Adam submitted his free will to Allah and abide by the Devine law. one day Adam was trapped into the devil’s plan and sent to the Earth and historins (muslim/non muslim) belive he was decended in Srilankaand Eve was descended in city of Jeddah of Saudi Arabia. Jeddah mean Grandmother. Since then, out of Allah’s mercy Allah has sent messengers from time to time guide the people with the same message of “Worship Allah alone”. All messengers from Adam, Moses, Jesus to Mohammed ( peace be upon them all) carried the same message. The same message is carried by all the messengers including Mohammed pbuh. All the previous messengers (prior to Mohammed) were sent only to particular nations for partcular time period. Mohammed was sent to entire mankind in the universe ( not only for Arabs or Muslims) and message the ( quran) is here until the final day.
    The person who submit his will is Called Muslim (submitter). All messengers are Muslims too.

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      Dear Sufi son,

      Islam started the day Allah created Adam not 1400 years ago.

      There is only one problem with your argument. Unfortunately, it is quite a serious one. And that is that neither “Allah” nor “Adam” existed. You also mention the “Devil” and “Eve.” More fictitious characters.

      All messengers from Adam, Moses, Jesus to Mohammed

      These days, there are a lot of people who call themselves “messengers of God.” Unfortunately, they lack the fan base of 1000 years ago, and end up sharing their “wisdom of God” with the psychiatrist at the asylum, after being heavily sedated.

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        the problem is still there about one man’s claim that he had attained a state that those who were successful at the practices of jainism that failed couldn’t. it those characters are not more fictitious than the voices he had conversations with in his head.

        oh Lester doesn’t buy everything religion sells him! now he is the self appointed ‘messenger’ of science that doesn’t accept fiction. then lets talk about the cat being both dead and alive at the same time before the box is opened, that whole atoms are now passing through both slits, that there exists another universe where lester is a muslim and that all of einstein’s theories are empirically supported at https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/cattle-slaughter-and-self-immolation/ :D

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          correction:

          Your comment is awaiting moderation.

          the problem is still there about one man’s claim that he had attained a state that those who were successful at the practices of jainism that he failed couldn’t. those characters are not more fictitious than the voices he had conversations with in his head.

          oh Lester doesn’t buy everything religion sells him! now he is the self appointed ‘messenger’ of science that doesn’t accept fiction. then lets talk about the cat being both dead and alive at the same time before the box is opened, that whole atoms are now passing through both slits, that there exists another universe where lester is a muslim and i have a phobia for another faith, and that all of einstein’s theories are empirically supported at https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/cattle-slaughter-and-self-immolation/ :D

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            Remember he is an Owl worshipper! no joke.

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        No Adam and Eve.

        It was Adam and Steve!

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          You bereave of the Eve you peeve, not in a grieve Mr.Steve.

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      These are people who are unhappy in life. Dying of jealousy and inferiority complex. No medicine could cure them. Divert your energy to something worthwhile

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        It is ignorance manifested in fear of death that created religion in the first place. If the rain didn’t come, there would be no harvest. If the sea rose too high, there would be a flood. Since people didn’t understand these were random events, they attributed them to higher powers.

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          If rain refuse to rain then it is drought, don’t talk of a harvest. If the sea rose and you are dead red its what called Tsunami, you will not see a bloody flood again. Randomly, you will be tickled here and there without informing your high powers in your derrière to titillate your senses.

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          ah…Lester quoting Hawking? Why don’t you come back to https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/cattle-slaughter-and-self-immolation/? :D

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    Ratnawalli, this is what you had stated in your original article – “Season 2- In 2/3rd century BC Lanka, adherents of a new religion make it a raging fashion to dedicate caves right and left to the cave dwelling Sangha (inscribing the donor names on the cave wall) and Kuragala does not escape.”

    In a footnote you justified this by stating that even though the word “Sangha” is not used the “context identifies the purpose” and therefore all the writings in the caves were for the sangha.

    As this assumption forms the foundation for your argument of a Buddhist heritage (or layered heritage) to the site, I asked you for any authority that supports this proposition. You asked me to await your second article. Unfortunately, apart from your argument (though it is, no doubt, plausible) you have not cited any authority in support.

    1. There can be many reasons for people inscribing in caves or claiming ownership. One has to only take a stroll in Badulla and you can find numerous rocks with modern inscriptions in chalk and paint. That does not make those people cave dwellers. It could just be graffiti.

    2. There are numerous cave inscriptions – just a google search would do – which have been made long after the time of “cavemen”.

    In the absence of strong authority to support this fact your argument remains a conjecture at best.

    What is troubling is that the foundational assumption of your thesis is given only in a footnote. In fact, it is presented with carelessness (or if one were less charitable, sleight of hand), as it gives the impression that it is axiomatic.

    As a matter of good writing, the basic foundation of your thesis should have been stated upfront. That allows the reader to follow your argument clearly, instead of having to guess the authorities that you may reveal in a future article.

    BTW, you state in your previous article that the inscriptions are in one language – “Sinhalese Prakrit”. But the links that you provided indicates that the language is “Prakrit”. For a person who is very particular about getting things right, surely this is a grave oversight (or sleight of hand, again?)

    S

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      Regarding Sinhalese Prakrit and Sinhala Brahmi,

      What William Giger labeled as Sinhala-Prakrit (old Sinhala) is actually Sanskritised Prakrit, the original ‘Indo-Aryan’ language that the North Indians brought to the island. Emperor Asoka’s missionary monks not only brought Buddhism to South India and Sri Lanka, they also brought the Pali language and the Asokan Brahmi script. The Brahmi script which have appeared somewhere in 3rd century B.C. simultaneously in the Tamil country and the Asokan Empire were the same. Both Prakrit (old Sinhala) and Tamil were written in Asokan Brahmi scripts. There is nothing called Sinhala Brahmi or Tamil Brahmi.

      Prince Tissa, his father/brother Muta Siva, Maha Siva, was all Sivaite (Siva worshipping) Nagas. When the Missionary Monk Mahinda came, they spoke the Deepa Bhasa (Naga language). However, the Nagas are also not aboriginals, they came from India.

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    Darshanie Ratnawalli:
    Please print exact Brahmi inscriptions and we can see whether they are in Sinhala or Pali,Tamil or Sanskrit!

    Further you know Tamil also. Sinhala, Tamil and Malayalam have a common PARENT language “HELA” or “ELU”.

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    There is a beautiful image and a verse in the religion of peace website.

    It has an image of a man cleaning a spiteful graffiti on a UK air force building.

    “As the pattern emerges across Europe, the real problem becomes harder to whitewash.”

    How true not just across Europe but also in SL.

    We should all join hands against the common threat to mankind.

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      Even the statue of Olcott is dottedly whitewashed. The menace should be evenhandedly controlled with a joint handshake. Your timely advise is much of a heartening. Skeep it up!

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    Ms.Ratnavali:
    Though you seem to have some difficulty reading scholarly texts, may I recommend the following book to you:

    The Psychoanalysis of Racism, Revolution and Nationalism
    By Richard A. Koenigsberg

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    Dharshanie,

    I have a plan, there is an easy way to chase the invaders.
    You can get into your bikini and lie on the famous Kuragala, when the followers come they will see the new gala and run away, then the BBS can enter the cave.

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      If the BBS gets enticed, where’s the cure for vaginitis.

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    As the author of the article which Ms. Ratnawalli criticizes, let me provide the background to my Jailani/Kuragala project. I first visited the site in 1993, returning to witness the annual festivals in 2001 and 2002. My hosts on both occasions were the late Hon. M.L.M. Aboosally and his family. However, they placed no restrictions whatsoever on my ethnographic research, nor did they prevail upon me in any way to promote Mr. Aboosally’s book. It should be clear to any reader that I conducted independent fieldwork, citing Aboosally only where I felt it was relevant. I chose not to discuss the epigraphical survey by Collins (JRASCB 1932) because I knew other scholars were much more qualified to interpret that kind of material. I first presented my findings at an invited conference on “Lived Islam in South Asia” held in Goa in December 2002 sponsored by the Konrad Adenauer Foundation, Delhi. The final version appeared in a collection of academic essays entitled “Lived Islam in South Asia: Adaptation, Accommodation and Conflict” published by Social Science Press (Delhi) and Berghahn Press (New York and Oxford) in 2004. Apart from their kindness and goodwill, members of the Aboosally family bear no responsibility for the publication of my article.

    Until Ms. Ratnawalli’s column appeared, I was not fully aware that my chapter had been posted (with photos added that are not mine) on the Jailani.org website. Although in principle I have no objection, I have since spotted a number of typographical errors, at least five of which are significant to the accuracy of the article, and the most trivial of which is the unexpected “aca” instead of the original “BCE” in footnote 20. I also see that my list of personal acknowledgments has been omitted from the web version. For all of these reasons, I strongly encourage Ms. Ratnawalli and her readers to download free PDF copies of my original Jailani article as well as any others that may be of interest from my personal website. http://www.colorado.edu/anthropology/mcgilvray/Home.html

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      cheeky Dharshaie,

      some one is good at chop and paste!

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      GREAT!!!

      Straight from the horse’s mouth. Ms. Ratnawalli’s whole article revolves around a few typos (spelling errors).

      Thanks Mr. McGilvray, your publications are wonderful.

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      Dear Sir

      In my article I took the usage of aca instead of BCE to be a sign of your unfamiliarity with the ancient period. But that was the most trivial part of my argument. The crux was your readiness to give a novel interpretation to the early Brahmi cave inscriptions of Lanka (they appear to assert territorial claims by local political chieftains. According to Aboosally there is no evidence that the site was ever dedicated to the Buddhist Sangha)based on M L M Aboosally, a non creditable source on the subject. I also noticed that when it came to other archaeological data on the site; i.e the discovery of the tomb-stone, the Arabic inscription on the Hituwangala rock, the Department of Archaeology’s consistent refusal to gazette these artifacts, your only source was still Aboosally M.L.M. Obviously you did not think the Director General Dpt of Archaeology enough of an authority to seek his opinion as to this failure to gazette or his reasons for declaring on a permanent tri-lingual board that the site was a second century Buddhist Monastery. Or if it was your inclination to consider the Director General as a government lackey or of an inferior expertise than Aboosally MLM, there were other archaeologists in Sri Lanka that you could have accessed. The crux of my article is your tendency to treat Aboosally:2002 as the sole, overriding authority on all matters archaeological with regard to Kuragala. I have since read your article in its original form and these defects still remain.

      So I would no longer say the usage of aca indicates your lack of familiarity. It is your lack of access to any source other than Aboosally:2002 that indicates your unfamiliarity with the complicated terrain of Lanka’s ancient period featuring the early Brahmi monastic complex.

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        cheek witharak, ayoooo………
        thai pongal = wap magula
        kasiappan = kasiyapa
        Kerala palagaram = kawum kokis
        april 13th tamil new year =sinhala new year
        viyaya = indian hindu
        baddhkachchana = indian
        sriwickrama rajasinghe = malayali indian
        veeravidhana = RSS
        JHU = BJP
        BeBeSena = Shivsena
        ravawa = hindu
        walli = walliamma
        ayoo ayoo…….

        i have no shame = iam a hambantota sinhala pro-regime bbs lunatic!!!

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    Mahanama,a Tamil? And Kasyapa is Kasiappah (Ratnajeevan Hoole and others say).Once a Tamil friend (not a Hindu) who went with me to Sita Eliya to bathe and on return at a tea kiosk he said that it was the place Sita went for her early morning open-air easing out, i.e.,to release “Bada-Eliya.’ Now the BJP govt of Madhya Pradesh is going to build a Sita Temple there with SL Govt’s blessings! They say Sita took the fire oath there to prove her fidelity. But Ramayana one version says, No. She was banished at the request of the people of Ayodhya for sitting and warming up on another man’s lap. Perhaps another temple side by side to celebrate the banishment, might be appropriate.That is another matter, that Mahanama-Kasiappa analogy brings out.
    Why did this Tamil Mahanama write a chronicle of the Sinhalese shutting out the Tamils? Million $ question! Nothing substantial mentioned about Tamils till the
    Chola invasion of the 10/11 th centuries?

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      Academician

      Looks like, other than the term Mahavamsa, you know nothing about it. The Mahavamsa talks mostly about the Tamils and hardly anything about the Sinhalese.

      The Mahavihara monks of Anuradapura maintained Pali chronicles in Sri Lanka which were intended primarily to record the activities of the Theravada Buddhists in a chronological order. The Mahavamsa was written not as a history of Sri Lanka (or Sinhalese) but as a history of the Mahavihara (Theravada Buddhists). The Mahavamsa and Dipavamsa speaks ONLY of Theravada Buddhists and NOT Sinhala-Buddhists or Tamil-Buddhists. The original Mahavamsa (Mahawansha), is a historical poem written in Pali, which covers a period starting from the arrival of Vijaya (543 BC) to the time of Mahasena’s rule (334-361 BC) written by the Venerable Mahanama Thero, an uncle of King Dhatusena.

      It was only recently the Sinhalese started calling the Pali chronicle of the Mahavihara as the chronicle of the Sinhalese. It The reason for this is, in the 13th century AD an unknown Buddhist monk wrote a commentary to Mahavamsa known as the ‘Mahavamsa Tika’. The Tika talks about a mysterious “Sihala atthakatha” (Vamsa text known as original source) that has disappeared after the Mahavamsa was written in Pali. This is the reason for calling the Pali chronicle of the Mahavihara as the chronicle of the Sinhalese.

      If one start reading all the Indian Epics and Puranas (Mahabaratha, Ramayana, Gita, etc, etc) originally written in Sanskrit, one will come to the conclusion without any second thought that Ven. Mahanama thero has copied or rather adopted all the so called “Sihala atthakatha” from these Sanskrit texts. Unfortunately, the scholars who interpreted/translated the Mahavamsa did not study all or any of these Sanskrit texts. If they did, it would have been a totally different story.

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      Mahavansa is not a chronicle of Sinhalese! It is a document of rulers of Sri lanka.

      Better study the history of Pallava rulers of Tamil nadu! Then you will be enlightened!

      Bengalis never claim they are “Aryans” but the decendents of Bengalis with many “mixes” cry they are Aryans. That is another joke of the Sinhala History!

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        Bengalis never call themselves Aryans, only the nom de plume ‘Sangahalese’ claim they are a pure breed of the Aryans confused from the once Yapena ruler Aryachakraborty from Gujarat installed under the patronage of the mudaliars of Kotte municipality.

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    Buddha was not a politician or a racist and Buddhism is not a politically motivated racist religion as believed by the non-Buddhists but those who call themselves ‘Sinhala Buddhists’ and follow the Mahavamsa as gospel (with a false belief that Sinhalese are a selected ethnic group) are the racists. They are not only a disgrace to Buddhism but also an insult to the enlightened one.

    As against the teaching of Buddha, the Mahavamsa approves a ‘just war’ filled with hatred, cruelty, massacre and destruction. These same ‘Sinhala Buddhists’ who follow the Mahavamsa and its ‘just war’ concept are criticizing the Islamic ‘holy war’ known as the Jihad without understanding its actual concept.

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    Siva,
    I must thank you for educating me on ‘Mahavamsha’.Sounds like “Weervamsha”.True! I do not know Mahavamhsa as you say.Not even the cover.It is in Ola I am told and in Pali language as you say.I do not read Ola.
    It is not me who says the work has shut out the Tamils.They are the Tamil scholars and writers who say that accusing this work of bias.I was only quoting them. You say the work “talks much about the Tamils and hardly anything about the Sinhalese”.
    So these Tamil writers accusing Mahavamsha of bias must be cleared up. Hoole and others say Mahanama compiler was a Tamil and Kasyapa was Kasiappah, [son of Pallava (slave) woman].How they got that information! That is another school. What have they said about Mahanama’s bias, i.e, not saying enough about Tamils.

    I do not have a Mahavamsha with me. I have a copy of Dipavamsa English translation. The opening verse says: Listen, I will set forth the history of Buddha’s coming to the island, of the arrival of relics and of the branch (of the Bodhi tree),of the doctrine,of the propagation of the Faith, and the arrival of the chief of men (Narindagamanam).
    So it looks like these chronicles are not just the story of Mahavihara as much as they are not compiled as a history of the Sinhalese or of Sinhalese or Tamil Buddhists. Mahavihara connection is also only an assumption like the others.We are not certain of anything. All historical assumptions can be questioned then.Right. Vijaya could be a Tamil. As Yalpana Vaipava Malai says Vijaya’s brother was the one who commenced the dynasty in Jaffna. That could lead to another assumption that Vijaya himself was a Tamil. According to Mahavamsha he got down brides from Pandu country. But does Yalpana Vaipava malai (17/18th century) speak of Tamils (Thamil)just like Mahavamsha does not speak of Sinhalese?

    You think there is no basis to calling Mahavamsha a chronicle of the Sinhalese.Right.Like YVM cannot be called a chronicle of the Tamils.

    Isn’t the term Chronicles of the Sinhalese a nomenclature used by historians (not exclusively Sinhalese ) alternatively to “Pali chronicles”? Until you explained the connection how it came to be called Sinhalese chronicles I did not know that such an idea existed at all.

    Your story must be told to the Tamils.Then they will stop accusing its compiler. It gives me a little hope that the work tells something about the Sinhalese as implied from your use of the word “hardly”.Can you tell me what that little bit is? Then I can tell my Sinhalese friends that this Tamil compiler Mahanama has not forgotten the Sinhalese altogether!
    Ps. I think Prof Sudarshan Seneviratne or H.A.L.Gunawrdana also wrote that ‘Sinhalese’ was not used as a nomenclature till very late centuries[like the nomenclature ‘Tamil’].

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      YVM was written during the Dutch period. The author praised the Dutch governer as KING! It has some “history” of Jaffna settlements but most of them happened during the Portugeuse times. Portugeuse brought people from Kerala, Goa and Africa to cultivate Tobacco and Chilli in Jaffna. The author of YPM tells it as happened during the time of Jaffna Kings.

      The throne names of the Jaffna Kings were Jega Raja Sekaran and Para Raja Sekaran.

      There were no Tamil king was known as RAJA SEKARAN. Rajasekaran (Raja Sekara Varma) was a Malayala king who started the Kollam Era.

      After the demise of the Pallava rulers in 9th century, many Pallava royal families moved to Kerala and started their own kingdom. Once part of the presentday Tamil nadu under the rule of Kerala kings. During that time the Jaffna kingdom too was born with the name of the Kerala king Raja Sekara Varma. Kalinga (Orissa) came with his army of Kerala and Oriya soldiers.

      Puttalam and Mannar were under the Kerala kings for a long time.

      Sinhalese and Tamils simply forget the Malayala connection to the Island!

      Kings fought for their “property Rights” and language played no roll during the times of Kings!

      Kings always used the language of the population ruled by them. Royals had their own languages.

      Pallava rule existed for more than six centuries. they started their inscriptions with Prakrit(Pali), Sanskrit, and Grantha(Tamil, Sanskrit, Pali mix). During the conflicts of SL kings over the throne, all of them went to Tamil nadu to get assistance. No one went to Bengal or Orissa!

      Inscriptions by the rulers are different from the inscriptions by the ordinary folks.

      Pali or Prakrit was used vastly by the Indian Royal Clans(Kshthriya Clans)

      Present day politics has no connections with the politics of the days of the Kings. But they use “few” words to get the advantage of the current racist politics.

      Further Kings of the OLD days had no bias over the Language of their subjects. All the SL kings had marriage connections with the royal houses of South India only. How did it happen if they had any language-enemity?

      After the arrivals of the Europeans only this language divisions started to cropup!

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        And if summarized in all the name Sinhala named for the Buddhist folks was concocted by the Sangha, thus the Sasana believers were named of as a new breed called Sangahala which during the course of time metamorphosed into a single race called Sinhala.

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        This M.Sivananthan aka Leela is a nut case. He is inventing stories from thin air. None of what he says can be proved, these are only jokes. He says everything in Jaffna came from Kerala. If it is so, then why and how the hell did they end up with Tamil as their mother tongue instead of Malayalam?

        Only one thing I agree with him. The Sanskrit/Prakrit/Pali languages and the Brahmi script/inscriptions were used only by the Royal Clans and the Buddhist/Jain/Hindu clergy during the ancient period.

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          If you know both languages, transition from malayalam to Tamil is not a big business! MGR and Nambiyar are good examples!

          Thousands of Malayalis came to Sri lanka during the British times and their children are now SINHALESE. I spotted many in Colombo and suburbs. TILAK MARAPPANA is a good example!

          When the Dutch moved the administration from GOA to Madras, they brought TAMIL education to Jaffna with Tami converts from Tamil Nadu.

          Schhols played a lot in the conversion of language. When Bishop Edmond Piris switched the schools under him in 1933 to Sinhala the current NWP Parawas and other catholic folks became Sinhala.

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      Native Veddha,

      Don’t you think the term ‘Academician’ is too technical for you. Now, you already know the answers to all what you are asking. Do you really want me to elaborate?

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    Fantastic! How elucidating!I withdraw my pseudonym. I am no longer fit to hold it. How little I know! One thing is true. It is the Malayali connection.The matrilineal laws among the Tamils and the Malayali connection among the Sinhalese.But my Malayali friends in Kerala hated the Jaffna Tamils but liked the Sinhalese.

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      Why, the Travancore petty zamindars, Tennakoon, Kuruppu, and Mahabali’s axe (Mahawali River) had more influence on the Kingdom of Kotte. Sinhala was made into a vocabulary by the malayalis with theirs and contributions of Sri Rahula, a malayali whose remains still lie in state in Goa venerated as a Christian saint as propounded by the Portuguese.

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      If you take a Sinhala Dictionary and readout the words to an educated Malayali (from Kerela), he will give you the exact meaning of at least 60% of them, but if you speak to him in Sinhala colloquial, he may not understand a word. Anyone who says Malayalam is not a part of SL language needs to talk to a Kattadiya in the south, specifically Matara and ask the guy for his roots (Malayaala Manthira).

      Religious practices such as the Pattini deity worship (as well as the worship of Natha, Vishnu, Kataragama, Saman and Vibhishana) were also introduced to Sri Lanka from Kerala. Sinhala classical poems such as the ‘Perakumba Sinha’ and ‘Kokila Sandesaya’ also bear the Kerala stamp.

      Even today, there is a fishing community in the Negambo-Puttalam Area which speaks Malayalam at night and Sinhalese in broad daylight. “Names we now consider Sinhala, like Kodippili, Samarappili, Samarakkodi, Kuruppu, Samaradivakara, Samarasinghe, Tennakoon, and many more are Malayalam. The Alakeshwara family, for instance, belonged to a Kerala dynasty that grew very close to the royalty of the 14th century Gampola kingdom.

      Many families modified their Kerela names into Sinhala, for example the Marappan family became Marapana (Tilak Marapana). There were also many Muslim families, for example the Markar family (Bakeer Markar, Markan Marker and so on) are all from Kerela. Markar is a common name in Kochin / Ernakulam area in Kerala. Even the name ‘Maraikkar’ is actually a malyalee name. It was the Cochin Markar who traded in cinnamon with Sri Lanka and sold them to the Portuguese in Cochin and Calicut (Kozhikode). They are the ones who took the ‘Parangiya to Kotte’ when the Portuguese wanted to meet the King of Kotte and you know how the Parangiya went to Kotte.

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        Ravi,

        Don’t tell the truth on this forum. Most of those who comment here have one phobia or another. Biggest of these is the phobia for truth.

        we like to think we are decedents from North East India and not from the South. why even our Ambassador told the South Indians that we have no connections with them.

        So much for the truth

        Gundu Babu

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          The tongue may lie , but look at any Sinhalese hard in the eye for a minute and you will not see a handsome Aryan from North India but a ruddy Kerala guy staring back at you. Looks never deceive. They surely dont.

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        Ravi

        More than the language, I also found something strange when I visited Kerela. When you go to the villages, they are exactly like Sri Lanka, with plenty of paddy fields and coconut trees, the people, their appearance, features and complexion are identical to Sinhalese, their food is exactly similar to the Sinhalese food, Kavum, kiribath, pol sambol, aapa, idiappa, pittu,(you hardly find them in Tamil Nadu because the Tamil food is Thosai, iddli, vadai, etc) and most others were very similar, and the best part was the dress worn by the remote village women in Kerala, it was retha/hetta what the Sinhalese women wear. For a moment, I thought I was in a Sinhala village. I even asked those people if their ancestors were Sinhalese. Unfortunately, most of them are not familiar with their history.

        I am particularly surprised to hear about the Osariya (sari that the Sinhalese women wear) which also came from Kerela. I was told that the style of wearing saree by the early Kerala women was exactly what the Sinhalese women wear now (Osariya).

        The Osari and Rathe hatta are still worn in some parts of Kerela, and most of the food the Sinhalese cook/eat including the sweet meats such as the Kavum is Kerala’s cultural cusines.

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          Check the “HERATH(seraththu=Kerala) Mudhiyaan SELAAGE.. Elder of Keralaa…

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            Mudaliyar (Sinhala) = Mudaliyar (Mudaliyar)
            Okkoma (Sinhala) = Okke (Malayalam)
            Tevadicchiyo (Sinhala) = Tevadicchi (Malayalam)
            Parippu (Sinhala) = Parippu (Malayalam) [exactly pronounced]
            Madhi (Sinhala) = Madhi (Malayalam) [meaning reflected the opposite]

            A renowned Sri Lankan social anthropologist, Prof. Gananath Obeyesekere has done research on the Lanka-Malayalam link.

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