15 November, 2019

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Paththini Breaks Sinhala-Buddhist Monopoly

By Ranga Kalansooriya

Dr Ranga Kalansooriya

Dr Ranga Kalansooriya

It was almost midnight when we paused our discussion on the issue of ‘hereditary rights of Sinhala community of Buddhism’ at the International Theravada Buddhist Missionary University in Yangoon two weeks ago. Along with a few Sri Lankan monks who are pursuing their higher studies in Myanmar, the discussion was on the mythical ownership claimed by the Sinhala community on Buddhism. The wealth of knowledge of the monks on pure Theravada Buddhism enriched the deliberations where they sighted the doctrine of The Buddha in the universality of ownership of his noble teachings.

One classic example was the dream of Siddhartha the day before his enlightenment. Four birds of different colours flew in from four different directions to him and turned into a single colour at his feet. Anyone from any sector of society who joined the Saasana would become a member of a common community – Sangha; not Sinhala Buddhist Sangha, as it is depicted in the present context. I started reading the well-researched book ‘Demala Bauddhaya’ [The Tamil Buddhist] by Senior Professor Sunil Ariyaratne where he elaborates on the influence of Buddhism among Tamils specifically in South India. The book argues that Buddhism is not a sole heritage of the Sinhalayas in Sri Lanka but the Dravidians [including Tamils] in South India, too, contributed to its well-being.“Paththini” by Professor Sunil Ariyaratne

He, with proof, argues that Arahat Mahinda spent a considerable period of time in South India spreading the word of The Buddha before sailing to Sri Lanka. This was not a comfortable story for Sinhala nationalists. Prof Ariyaratna, of course, came under heavy criticism from those nationalistic quarters after publishing this book a decade ago – as they were not prepared for any academic or other argument that challenges their mythical belief on the ownership of Buddhism. His latest movie ‘Paththini’ is an extension of this book where he argues that the concept of Goddess Paththini has been derived from South India with a Buddhist background. For the common Sinhalaya, Paththini is a Sinhala Buddhist Goddess that makes her divine intervention to all important or risky stages of his/her life. Professor Gananath Obeyesekere’s book ‘The Cult of the Goddess Pattini’ published by the University of California in 1984 discusses the influence of Paththini on the Sri Lankan – especially the Sinhala – society at various levels.

The concept of Paththini derives from two Tamil historic poetries – Silappadikaram and Manimekhalya – written by two different renowned Tamil poets centuries ago. Prof Ariyaratna has amalgamated both these great stories in creating the movie Paththini, according to my reading.

The movie challenges the mythical misconceptions of the Sinhala Buddhists specifically on their authoritarian ownership of Buddhism as well as Goddess Paththini. Prof Ariyaratna discusses the influence of Buddhism in South India where Kannagi (who later became Paththini) and all her associates became followers of Buddhism at a later stage. I was happy to see long queues in front of movie theatres after a long time. Everyone has contributed their maximum to this great creation – especially Puja being the main actress has reached her pinnacle – or rather Prof. Ariyaratna has managed to bring her to the top of her career. But I am not convinced that Uddika Premaratne has matched her talents, though he has performed well in others. Dr. Rohana Weerasingha’s music direction has outsmarted all his other former creations. The sound engineering work would have been better though.

This movie reminded me of ‘Sarungale’ (The Kite) film, another direction of Prof. Ariyaratna in the late 70s when he was a lecturer at the Jaffna University. ‘Sarungale’ discussed harmony between the Sinhala and Tamil communities through a memorable love story that ended with racial riots. The anti-nationalistic sentiments of the Director were refreshed and re-transformed to the society through Paththini, as I see it.

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Latest comments

  • 25
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    These are good developments that hopefully would give peace a great chance. There was a lot of intermingling that took place in the past. It would be an immense crime against Buddhism for anyone to claim ownership of it. Buddhism belongs to all mankind and protects all living things. Buddhism therefore belongs to all living things.

    Another good read I had recently was Commodore Boyagoda’s well written book on his captivity during the war. ( It was written by a young writer, Sunila Galapatti, on the basis of the account given to her by the officer)The Tigers seem not to have treated him badly. No captivity is good but there are snippets in it which brings out the fact that the hostility between the two races was entirely the creation of their leaders and not of the ordinary people. Boyagoda refers to how the Tiger boys were glued to the radio when the World Cup was being played and cheered loudly when Sri Lanka won. He refers to his captors without rancour and often with affection, though a couple were positively cruel. He is clearly in favour of devolution of power as a solution to the problems. He believes that no one wins wars. A good point that hopefully will end triumphalism.

    Let us hope that sanity prevails and the past accord between the people can be built upon and the political comedians be kept at bay.

    • 1
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      SL’s greatest lady philanthropist – Selestina Dias, the mother of freedom-fighter, Buddhist revivalist and nationalist Kos Mama aka (Sir) Arthur V Dias was a Paththini-Hennadige….

  • 12
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    This writer naively and clearly confuses that there are two things called Buddha sasana and the Sinhalese culture that has evolved around societal Buddhism.
    Perhaps we can look at Christianity in Norway to understand this a little better. In Norway the majority are Christians. It is compulsory for everypne to study that religion, even if you are a Hindu or a Jew or a Buddhist. The priests are paid as pensionable government servants. It is said that all this is to “protect” the Christian heritage of Norway? is this writer, and Sunil Ariyaratne, going to tell us that
    The book argues that Christianity (replace Buddhism here, and so on) is not a sole heritage of the Norwegians in Norway but of the Dravidians [including Tamils] in South India, (who) too, contributed to its well-being”.?
    Same goes for Greece, where orthodox Christian priests are paid servants of the state, and paying a pension.
    In England the king must necessarily be an Anglican. The Englsih, since Edward VIII think that they must protect their version of Anglican Christianity. Does this writer say that “Anglican Christianity is the sole heritage of the English, and yet says says Sinhalese Buddhism is NOT the sole heritage of the Sinhalese”.

    Of course, other ethnic groups have contributed to Anglican Christianity. There are many Sinhalese prelates of Colombo who hacve contributed “to the well-being” of Anglican Christianity. But Christ’s Christianity was not restricted to a chosen race, or even to the middle east or the Roman empire, least of all to the English.

    So, what is this writer trying to say?

    He is trying to say, look how liberal minded and broad-minded i am, unlike you GOdAYAs who are so narrow, and think you have to support Sinhala Buddhist claims because the Buddha sasana is open to anyone. How can writers be so ignorant of anthorpology and sociology?

    So, there was something called Tamil buddhism which this writer and Nimal Ariyaratne are ready to acknowledge, and even write a book with that title, and come forward to give Tamil Buddhism its due place, but rejects any right to Sinhala Buddhism?
    Tamil Buddhism and its culture and its literature, and that should be protected by the Tamil Buddhists. The Sinhala Buddhists would naturally want to preserve their heritage and culture that they are justly proud of.

    People like Kalnsooriya cannot understand this because they wish to distinguish themselves and be distinct from the “crass Sinhala Buddhist natives”, just as the English civil servants of a certain era did, or follow the path of G. G. Ponnambalam who went to Nawalapitiya in 1939, bashed the Mahawamsa and the singhalese who he declared were a “mongrel mixed breed”, unlike the tamils who are pure Chola Dravidians. It was this type of Tamil racism that ignited the first race riot (in 1939), and kindled the Eelam movement that started in 1949 by the Ilankai Thamil Arasu Kadchi (ITAK)which wants to Preserve Jaffna-Tamil culture said to be distinct from the malabar tamil culture of South india. So we have all these parties in the North, with “Tamil” ethnicity as the integral part of their names.

    Acknowledging the Tamil Buddhists and tamil rights, and denigrating the Sinhala rights,and the cultural heritage of the sinhalese, proves that this writer is indeed so “broad-minded” (perhaps like a broad who sleeps with any man as long as he pays), that Mr. Mangala Munasingha might choose him to be sent to Geneva to represent Sri lanka at the UNHRC and admit to all the charges that will be laid against Sri Lanka, and also go further to claim that it has all been done by the Sinhalese mongrel race with their beastly, incestuous “Mahawamsa” mentality.

    • 10
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      Norway Buadhaya claims that studying Christian (Lutheran) religion is a must in “state” schools in Norway… I am really surprised.. Even, Japan removed teaching of religion (Buddhism) in 1970s.. Even in India, they teach selected verses of Baghawad Gita as “Life Science” or “Way of Life” .. or as Religious Education like in the West.. In the West including Norway, high school children have an option to learn ReligionS (note “S”) and ethics as a subject “Religious Education”.. Teaching religion in Christian or Muslim school is a different story…..
      Here is an exert of recent Norway education evolution
      “In the 1990s, the need was felt to restructure religious education in schools so as to provide an opportunity for mutual learning. A new system of religious education in primary and lower secondary schools was introduced in 1997. Until then , parents had three options as to religion in school: either (1) Christianity with a confessional, Lutheran basis, or (2) “worldviews” with a neutral or even secular flavour, or (3) no religious or life stance education in school. In principle, the faith communities could establish their own out of school religious education, with financial support from the authorities. Some mosques took advantage of the opportunity and were thus able to receive some financial support for their qur’anic schools (only for those Muslim children who opted out from religion in school).”

    • 5
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      NorwayBahuddhaya

      “Tamil Buddhism and its culture and its literature, and that should be protected by the Tamil Buddhists. The Sinhala Buddhists would naturally want to preserve their heritage and culture that they are justly proud of.”

      Yes. It is up to each community to protect its heritage.

      However, what the writer is saying is that, while the Sinhala can have Sinhala “Buddhism”, so can the Tamils can have Tamil “Buddhism”, in SRI LANKA, populated by the PARA from India.

      What happened to Mahayana Buddhism in Sri Lanka? The same happened to Tamil Buddhism in Sri Lanka?

      The Impact of Mahayana Buddhism on Sri Lanka

      A common practice among Sri Lanka’s Theravada Buddhist families is to give alms to the Sangha on the seventh day after the death of a near and dear one.

      http://www.buddhistdoor.net/features/the-impact-of-mahayana-buddhism-on-sri-lanka

      https://journals.ub.uni-heidelberg.de/index.php/jiabs/article/viewFile/8892/2799

    • 9
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      NorwayBahuddhaya,

      Agreed exactly! In England, Christianity is the neutral de facto heritage of the Britians. It is the same in America, where English and Christian heritage is the benchmark culture (although point-% latitude is given for others). Sinhala Buddhism likewise is the innate, intrinsic and substantive heritage of Sri Lanka.

      All is good if Buddhism actually belonged to the Tamils at one time 10’s of thousands of years ago. But it hasn’t been so for millennia. Tamils nowadays are predominantly Hindus and proudly intend to always remain so. Even if unintended by the Tamils of yore, that Egalitarian Buddhism was forced out of them by Hindu castists of the North, in this modern era that 15- million Dalits are sorely ill-used and grossly neglected in Tamil Nadu itself, bears proof to Hindu debasement.

      However, there might be a concerted effort by Lankan Tamils to accept social values as prescribed by the Buddha. Rampant terrorism for 30 long years has given them awareness that castist racism cannot work on Lankan soil. They have seen the imbalance of caste structures and the degradation it caused in trying to topple the Egalitarian social structure of Sinhala Buddhist structure. When trying to overrun the system with a forced unnecessary and delusional topped-up brain power, so out of context for the tiny Island near the equator, Tamils found that their Hindu ideology was antediluvian and psychotic.

      Legend has it that the Island of Lanka secured Buddhism for over a million years. Buddhism was the natural order of the Universe, and the original race, the Helas, were participators and guardians of this rationalism. Twenty-eight Buddhas have been in existence since the beginning of time.

      The recent Buddha, Gautama, as of 2,500 years ago, travelled southwards to Sri Lanka because it was the main stop that was revealed to him by the forces of the Universe. Hela race spilled over into Tamil Nadu, and hence it is the reason why there are Buddhist artifacts on TN soil (Dna readings show that Tamil Naduians also show some part of Sinhala genes). However, Sinhalese on Lankan soil are the original proprietors and custodians of the ancient rite. Sinhala Buddhism has its natural protective agency encompassing time, space and auspices.

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_the_named_Buddhas

      • 9
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        stupid ramona therese Fernando,

        If you know how to use google, type Tamil Buddhism and search, you will learn something that will make you come out from your ignorance and stupidity instead of hallucinating.

      • 5
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        “Legend has it that the Island of Lanka secured Buddhism for over a million years.”

        Ramona is talking about Dinosaur Buddhas of the Triassic, Jurassic, and Cretaceous Periods. The Dinosaurs had been preaching Buddhism. When did you escape from mental asylum?

        “Buddhism was the natural order of the Universe”

        Yes, Buddhism was also existing in Mars and Venus before it came to Sri Lanka. All the Buddhas including Gautama Buddha were Sinhalese born in Sri Lanka. Someone has wrongly mentioned Gautama Buddha was Indian. Which mental institute accepted you?

        “Hela race spilled over into Tamil Nadu”

        Hela is actually the Eela Tamils and Veddhas. Some of them got converted to Buddhists when Emperor Ashoka sent Mahinda thero with Buddhism and Pali to Sri Lanka and those who got converted Buddhists were known as Sinhalese.

        • 0
          5

          Nonsense, Tamils came from the Pakistan area (Mohenjo Daro etc.), and were chased away to the south by Aryan tribes.

          Dinosaurs only existed in certain parts of the world.

          Buddhism existed for a million years in specially chosen areas of the world viz. Sri Lanka, Nepal, Burma and the Indo-China. These places were in a venerated network with each other for millions of years. A few of the 28 Buddhas were probably born in Sri Lanka.

          Buddhism was on the wane in Sri Lanka when Gautama Buddha arrived 2,500 years ago. Tamil Hindus were trying to teach Hinduism to the Helas, but they found it too wild. When Gautama came, they sighed with relief, because finally their inherent nature could be restored. Helas very easily glided back to the faith of their ancestors. That it never happened in India with all the teachings of the arahants.

          • 0
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            [Edited out]

          • 1
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            ramona therese fernando

            “Buddhism was on the wane in Sri Lanka when Gautama Buddha arrived 2,500 years ago. Tamil Hindus were trying to teach Hinduism to the Helas, but they found it too wild. When Gautama came, they sighed with relief, because finally their inherent nature could be restored. Helas very easily glided back to the faith of their ancestors. That it never happened in India with all the teachings of the arahants”

            Yes SO Therese Pranado & Ramona Like Solomon Ridgeway Dias Don Steve, Cyril, Matteue, Silva, Nilaperumal, Thevaraperumal and all other Perumals, Junius, Richerd Felix, Percival…. The list goes on an on all becane Sinhala Budhist over the Million Years.

            Are you Still unser sedation from qhwew you escaped. The serch is on for a Missing Ramona From Angoda.

            Levi

            • 3
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              The very first ape has spoken Sinhala and preached Buddhism. Out of the 28 imaginary Buddhas, 14 were Sinhala speaking Dinosaurs, 13 were Sinhala speaking monkeys and one was Magadi Prakrit speaking human. Out of the 13 monkeys, a few were born in Sri Lanka.

              • 1
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                Only tamils are known to make such claims and not we sinhalese

          • 0
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            Hela/Eela people came from the Pakistan area (Mohenjo Daro etc.), and were chased away to the south (Tamil Nadu & Sri Lanka)by Aryan tribes.

        • 1
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          LOL as I stated several times place a proper source to whatever the bullsh1t you put forward as history

      • 6
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        According to scientific research, human populations started only 60,000 years ago.

        Journey of Man; A Genetic Odyssey by Spencer Wells,
        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-dDXIX-y6aY

        ramona therese Fernando must be talking about Monkeys practicing Buddhism a million years ago. That may be the reason why the Sinhala Buddhist monks are still behaving like Monk-eys. Look at this Buddhist monkey, see this video how he is behaving in public… https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D2kkZfb5uM0
        These are the guardians of Sinhala-Buddhism.

        • 0
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          King Wala Gemba :

          Well, they have only dug about 60,000 years down, haven’t they. The rest must be oil and gas by now. That special group of enlightened beings must have cremated their dead, or transcended body and soul into the heavens.

          • 1
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            Ramona T F

            You dear are indeed a treasure!

            People should pay to see you before you have “transcended body and soul into the heavens” whatever that may mean.

            You widen our horizons so much!

    • 5
      1

      NorwayBahuddhaya

      Did you know the universe is expanding faster than the scientists thought?

      Here is the story, read it and let us know what it means to Earthling like us? You should once in a while pull your head out of where it is now and see the magic what scientists call universe:

      Universe is expanding up to 9% faster than we thought, say scientists

      Measurements taken by Hubble space telescope conflict with studies of radiation left over from Big Bang – fuelling theories of ‘dark energy’ and mystery particles

      The universe is expanding faster than anyone had previously measured or calculated from theory. This is a discovery that could test part of Albert Einstein’s theory of relativity, a pillar of cosmology that has withstood challenges for a century.

      Nasa and the European Space Agency jointly announced the universe is expanding 5% to 9% faster than predicted, a finding they reached after using the Hubble space telescope to measure the distance to stars in 19 galaxies beyond theMilky Way.

      The rate of expansion did not match predictions based on measurements of radiation left over from the Big Bang that gave rise to the known universe 13.8bn years ago.

      Physicist and lead author Adam Riess said: “You start at two ends, and you expect to meet in the middle if all of your drawings are right and your measurements are right.

      “But now the ends are not quite meeting in the middle and we want to know why.”

      The researchers arrived at a new expansion rate of 73.2 kilometres per second per megaparsec. A megaparsec is 3.26 million light years. The consequence of this adjustment in difficult-to-imagine speeds over unthinkable distances is that the distance between cosmic objects will double in another 9.8 billion years. The catch is that such speeds do not match predictions for an expansion rate from other observations made by Nasa’s Wilkinson microwave anisotropy Probe, or the European Space Agency’s Planck satellite. Both went into orbit to study the afterglow of the Big Bang, in which time, space and matter were created. And both delivered lower – and in each case slightly different – predictions for cosmic expansion, the first 5% and the second 9% lower.

      The latest discovery also stirs hypotheses about what fills the 95% of the cosmos that emits no light and no radiation, scientists said on Thursday.

      One possibility for the discrepancy is that the universe has unknown subatomic particles, similar to neutrinos, that travel nearly as fast as the speed of light, about 186,000 miles (300,000km) per second.

      Another idea is that so-called “dark energy”, a mysterious, anti-gravity force discovered in 1998, may be shoving galaxies away from one another more powerfully than originally estimated.

      “This may be an important clue to understanding those parts of the universe that make up 95% of everything and that don’t emit light, such as dark energy, dark matter and dark radiation,” said Riess, with the Space Telescope Science Institute in Baltimore, Maryland.

      Riess shared the 2011 Nobel prize in physics for the discovery that the expansion of the universe was speeding up.

      The speedier universe also raises the possibility that Einstein’s general theory of relativity, which serves as the mathematical scaffolding for calculating how the basic building blocks of matter interact, is slightly wrong, or at least incomplete.

      “We know so little about the dark parts of the universe, it’s important to measure how they push and pull on space over cosmic history”, said one of the team, Lucas Macri of Texas A&M University.

      Such research has a long history of revision and updates. Einstein’s original calculations for general relativity seemed to predict that the universe was expanding and – in what he is supposed to have described later as his greatest blunder – he confected a cosmological constant to correct what he thought was an error. In 1923, the great American astronomer Edwin Hubble stared through what was then the world’s biggest telescope at what he thought was a nebula – cloud of dust – in the night sky and realised that he was observing another distant star system: the island universe of the Andromeda galaxy. And within two years he had observed the light signature of a receding galaxies, and proposed that everywhere in the universe, galaxies were rushing away each other, the farthest away at a greater rate.

      But all astronomical observations depend on being able to calculate distances, and from that make ever more precise estimates of galactic recession. When the Hubble space telescope was first launched in 1990, estimates of the rate of cosmic expansion varied by a factor of two. Continuous observations seemed to narrow the range to ever more precise estimates.

      Until 1998, astronomers thought they had got the big picture. The universe was expanding at a steady rate, but it might still be possible that expansion could halt, or even that the universe could contract. A team of astronomers staring at a class of stars called type 1a supernovae across enormous distances realised that the furthest were not just receding at the predicted rate: they were accelerating as if being driven by a mysterious force briefly dubbed “antigravity”.

      It was the first hint of what, for want of a better term, is called dark energy: a so-far inexplicable force that is likely to keep the universe expanding forever. And it was at that point that cosmologists began to realise that all the gas, dust, planets, stars, galaxies and black holes they could account for added up to only about 4% of the universe.

      It also raised the possibility that, an unimaginable number of years from now, all the other galaxies will have receded over some cosmic horizon, leaving the Milky Way alone in the visible universe, and with no distant objects to provide any evidence at all of accelerating cosmic expansion.

      The latest advance on the speed of universal expansion builds on all these elements in a century of cosmological discovery. Riess and colleagues made their discovery by building a better cosmic yardstick to calculate distances. They used the Hubble Space Telescope to measure a particular type of star, known as Cepheid variables – the stars that gave Edwin Hubble and and his colleagues the first hint of an expanding universe – in 19 galaxies beyond our own Milky Way galaxy.

      How fast these stars pulse is directly related to how bright they are, which in turn can be used to calculate their distances, much like a 100-watt light bulb appears dimmer the farther away it is. They also used the type 1a supernovae as “standard candles” and it had been this class of objects that had illuminated not just another advance in speed but speculation about dark energy.

      The research will be published in an upcoming edition of the Astrophysical Journal.

      theguardian.com/science/2016/jun/03/

      • 0
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        Native Vedda…that was profound!

        expansion of Universe is due to the expansion of our brains. Every thought we think; every word we read and utter……and the Universe expands concurrently…….(and there are a hell of a lot of thinking going around by existential beings)….Mind and Universe is One! ..Once we transcend brain-thought, we enter Nirvana. then the Universe becomes a static permanence……

        ” . . . Now there comes a time, when sooner or later, after the lapse of a long, long period of contraction, this world-system passes away. And when this happens beings have mostly been re-born in the World of Radiance, and there they dwell made of mind, feeding on joy, radiating light from themselves, traversing the air, dwelling in glory; and thus they remain for a long, long period of time. Now there comes also a time, friends, when sooner or later, this universe begins to re-evolve by expansion.” (The Buddha, Brahmajala Sutta, Digha Nikaya, Sutta Pitaka)

        http://www.dhammawiki.com/index.php?title=The_science_of_Buddhism

    • 6
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      NorwayBahu – It is most unfortunate, even tragic, that the Gautama Buddha’s foundation for his philosophy – ie: the Four Noble Truths and Eightfold Path has been turned into a mish-mash by those seeking to use it for their own selfish purposes.

      As a result we have Theravada, Mahayana, Tibetan, Tamil, Sinhala, etc, etc, ‘Buddhism’. This has resulted in all manner of ritualistic practices that have little to do with what the Buddha taught.

      For instance, the practice of ‘Poojas’, worshiping priests, loudspeakers blaring ‘bana’ from temples, etc, are methods used by many of our Sinhala Buddhist priests to gain power over their ‘flock’ and live their (anything but austere) lives. The recent BBS took this one step further with their particular brand of racist / militant actions.

      Time for the ‘flock’ to wake up to what the Buddha actually taught and practice living according to the Eightfold Path.

      The rest of the bullshit is meaningless.

    • 0
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      Look Like a Sinhala christian want to brain wash Sinhala buddhists.

      • 2
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        Jim shitty, the nut job is at it again. You are a Christian wannabe. Take your head out of your arse for a change. What happened to you when you were small, did the Christian missionaries hit you with a stupid stick on your head for getting the lowest marks in the class and obtaining the highest marks in the class for dumbness.

      • 4
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        jim softy dimwit

        “Look Like a Sinhala christian want to brain wash Sinhala buddhists. “

        Remember it was an American Christian who brain washed Anagarika (the homeless one) with his Protestant Buddhism. Since then Buddhism in this island had turned into Sinhala/Buddhism, a parochial nasty little political force.

  • 6
    12

    Isn’t this the person who is said to have claimed that:

    “I am the person who established the Sri Lanka College of Journalism. But I have to say I am ashamed of the quality of journalism in Sri Lanka as well as elsewhere.”
    The collage certainly needs to aspire higher than its founder whose statements
    have not always been credible.

    There was no Buddhist compassion in the Tamils who drove out the Muslims from Jaffna with only a few hours notice. We know what the Tamils did in kattankudy to Muslims praying peacefully.
    There was no compassion or any Buddhism in the LTTE who massacred a huge number of priests in Aranthalawa on June 2nd a few decades ago.
    Given the claimed tamil heritage of Buddhism, why do they go about opposing the setting up of Mosques, or destroying Buddhist temples in the North? The Sinhala buddhists have also, in common with the Tamil who create Makkal Padai groups, copied them and created Bodu-Bla-Sena. These of course have nothing to do with the Buddha’s Buddhism which is as peaceful as the teachings of islam or Christianity. But the religion should be distinguished from various CULTURAL DEVELOPMENTS associated with that religion. The Catholic Chruch, and all sorts of Islamic sects, Hindu sects are not the same as the religious teaching.

    Mr. Ranga doesn’t seem to understand this? But tamil Buddhism is good.

    So, Mr. Ranga, I don’t know what Rnaga (game) is being played by you here?

  • 7
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    Sri Lanka was the refuge of Buddhism when Brahamins started annihilating Buddhism in India. India which was a Buddhist country under the auspices of the Mughals and Brahamins was made non Buddhist. Sri Lanka was the last refuge on the southern front. The historic responsibility to protect buddhism fell on Sri Lanka. Unfortunately this responsibility has now been used by the anti Sinhala buddhist movements to miserpresent and call it Sinhaa Buddhism. Buddhism cannot be highjacked by any single person or group and for that matter any other religion could use its philosophy. Buddhist Christians , Jew Buddhs etc are new groups of buddhists but the philosophy is the same. Even the Sinhalese have Hindu Gods in their temples. This Sinhala Buddhism depicted regularly by the minorities is a propaganda against the Sinhalese and has nothing to do with religion. This relentless propaganda must stop as it only creates division and is destructive. Buddhism is far above these conflits created by the enemies of the Sinhala People.

    • 10
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      vas, I wish I could agree with you; but, I am unable to.

      … India which was a Buddhist country.

      Correct. But, correctly speaking, India was ONCE a Buddhist country. What was India prior to it? What is India AFTER it?

      Wasn’t India a Hindu state? Wasn’t Siddhartha Gautama born a Hindu. Why was India made non Buddhist?

      Isn’t it striking that a ‘temple’, unlike a church or a mosque, is the place where both Hindus and Buddhists worship. Siddhartha Gautama is not a God. He was a revivalist.

      You say that the Sinhalese have Hindu Gods in their temples. How is that there are Hindu Gods in Buddhist temples? Which aspects of Buddhism does Sri Lanka follow?

      Minorities are not against Buddhism. I visit and worship in Buddhist temples. Yet, I call myself a Hindu. ( I visit and worship in Christian churches, also.)

      God is one and the same. Religions are for one and the same purpose. We should not be condemning or fighting each other.

      Why do you see others as enemies of the Sinhala people? Do you consider yourself an enemy of the Tamil people?

      If you are truly religious espouse the virtues of Buddhism. Help to heal the divisions among peoples of Sri Lanka.

      • 1
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        Nathan,
        Every word is analysed and distorted by the likes of people like you. It is that inability of the Tamils to have a broad out look that has caused all the ill will. From thw 50 50 cry of GGP to now, it is not peaceful co existence you desire but conflict and hegemony. It is this vellala mentality even a low caste Prabahakaran could not get rid of. Comments that are seen on this web site by Tamils is so biased against rationality and peace. This is seen even in Tamil Nadu between the low caste Tamil christians and Brahamin Hindus. Where do you find Suicide even for the smallest grievance in the whole of India not any where else but in Tamil Nadu. You Tamils never stop continuing the same propaganda and convincing your self it is the truth which then propagates. Every body else sees the truth differently. That is a problem of the Tamils not any one else You can continue in this illusionary world. Good Luck.

        • 5
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          vas,

          The powerless GGP uttered 50:50, 50% for the Sinhala and 50% for the rest of the minorities, but the Sinhala in power subjected the Tamils to Sinhala Only, state sponsored pogroms, giving Buddhism the foremost place, burning down the Jaffna library, drove away the Tamil academics, bleed dry of the Tamils from the civil service and finally erecting Buddha statues all over north and east on state expense!

          Then you talk about peaceful coexistence! What you want is the Tamil subordination in totality. Grow up mister and do not talk nonsense on public forums.

          • 0
            3

            violence and stupidity begets violence and stupidity. Tamil vellalas have still not learnt the lesson of their stupidity. Even Prabahakaran could not change you Tamils. Tamils will continue living in the proverbial well . You lot will never be happy and content. You want Indians you remember what they dis to your women go and start living there to see the fun.

            • 3
              0

              vas,

              You have no basis to counter me and you just resorted to ranting!

              Sort out your caste issues first before talking about the Tamils! You will not subjugate the Tamils and you learn this simple fact for your own good!

            • 5
              0

              vas

              “Even Prabahakaran could not change you Tamils.”

              Was he a miracle worker?

              ” Tamils will continue living in the proverbial well .”

              Does it mean you are living in an enclosed bunker?

              “You lot will never be happy and content.”

              People like you are constantly making them unhappy and discontent as expected from a sadist.

              sadist

              a person who gets pleasure, sometimes sexual, by being cruel to or hurting another person.

              “violence and stupidity begets violence and stupidity.”

              Are you implying LTTE violence and stupidity is justified because of preceding state purported violence and stupidity.

              “You want Indians you remember what they dis to your women go and start living there to see the fun.”

              What are you ranting about in your own bigoted fashion?

            • 1
              3

              Burning Issue,
              no one wants to subjugate tamils Tamils have subjugated them selves. Tell me one Commentator that is rational It is either Para Sinhala, Para buddhism and continuous allegations of subjugation . How many Tamils are subjugated in wellawatte. The point about Tamils is that a continuous barrage of anti sinhala rhetoric will make untruth truth. It is the same rhetoric used by GGP who spoke about the purity of the Tamil Race or Mrs A threat that sinhala skins will be used to make slippers. The selective amnesia is unbelievable. A sinhalese responds to that and you are subjugated. Tamils save thy self . The Indians, British your slave masters will not save you. You all are pathetic
              Re Caste issue. Go see in London ,Toronto or jaffna for that matter

        • 0
          1

          Vellalas don’t obey low castes, Prabakaran is a high caste man, so no problem, lower than Vellalas, that’s it.
          Low are the servant caste Koviar, Nadar and Pallar, etc.

  • 9
    2

    Dr Ranga Kalansooriya

    1. “Anyone from any sector of society who joined the Saasana would become a member of a common community – Sangha; not Sinhala Buddhist Sangha, as it is depicted in the present context.”

    2. “I started reading the well-researched book ‘Demala Bauddhaya’ [The Tamil Buddhist] by Senior Professor Sunil Ariyaratne where he elaborates on the influence of Buddhism among Tamils specifically in South India. The book argues that Buddhism is not a sole heritage of the Sinhalayas in Sri Lanka but the Dravidians [including Tamils] in South India, too, contributed to its well-being.”

    3. “He, with proof, argues that Arahat Mahinda spent a considerable period of time in South India spreading the word of The Buddha before sailing to Sri Lanka. This was not a comfortable story for Sinhala nationalists. Prof Ariyaratna, of course, came under heavy criticism from those nationalistic quarters after publishing this book a decade ago – as they were not prepared for any academic or other argument that challenges their mythical belief on the ownership of Buddhism.”

    4. “The movie challenges the mythical misconceptions of the Sinhala Buddhists specifically on their authoritarian ownership of Buddhism as well as Goddess Paththini.”

    Dr Ranga Kalansooriya, thank you for the summary.

    The Para-Sinhala need to own Buddhism. Id not they do not have much.

    Therefore, they like to marginalize the Tamils Buddhists. They do not want the Tamils to Own Buddhism. The Sinhala. it appears wanted the Tamils to stay Tamils and Hindus? Why?

    Why are there hardly any Tamil Hindus in Sri Lanka? After all Buddha Ghosa was Tamil or came from Tamil Nadu.

    • 4
      0

      Amarey, our best friend China has a Buddhist revival happening.
      Buddhism went across the East and it was the Chinese who gave Gautama Buddha an image resembling them.
      So, what happens now, when Chinese Buddhism reclaims it’s lost past ? Surely they will challenge the Sinhala Buddhist view.
      My friend the Urban Monk here practices Buddhism with a Western Twist. He is like a rock star he keeps away from the Sinhala Buddhist Narration.

      Cheers.

  • 13
    0

    Buddhism is believed to be flourished in Kanchipuram (in present Tamil Nadu) between the 1st and 5th centuries.
    BuddhaGosha (VissudhiMagga), AryaDeva (Mahayana Text , well known disciple of Nagarjuna), Dharmapala , BodhiDharma (Zen) are some of the well known Buddhist scholars lived in Kanchipuran Buddhist institutions between the 1st and 5th centuries… It is believed Nagarjuna was born in South India and then he moved to Nalanda in Bihar.

    (I am not saying Sinhalese Buddhist work done in Anuradhapura period was higher or lesser than Knachipuram work.. Foe example, BuddhaGosha wrote VisuddhiMagga (500BC) in Jethawanarama, consulting great Sinhalese buddhist monks there)…

    • 15
      4

      Alahakoon

      “Foe example, BuddhaGosha wrote VisuddhiMagga (500BC) in Jethawanarama, consulting great Sinhalese buddhist monks there)”

      1. I do not believe the phrase Sinhalese Buddhist was in vogue at the time of Anuradhapura, simply it was Buddhism and nothing else.

      2. The phrase Sinhalese Buddhist came into fashion about 125 years ago.

      3. Sinhala/Buddhism was a used as a political tool to garner support for the parochial political project, and we know what happened since 1948.

      4. The 1881 Ceylon census recorded the fact that there were about 12000 Tamils also confirmed that they were Buddhists.

      5. At the time of the census a few Mohammedans also claimed being followers of Buddhism.

      6. Buddhism was and is the teaching of the awakened one, not a political tool to beat up the minorities. The admixture of religion and language has produced nasty dirty bomb in this island, as it does to Tamil and Saivaism, Arabic and Islam.

      7. Language should be liberated from religion and religion should be liberated from language, a recipe to avoid theocracy, fascism, …..

      8. We are supposed to be living in an enlightened era, with development in science and technology. Therefore we must strive to keep religion a private matter, treat language a mere medium of communication.

      9. A few readers in this forum argue for one language, one religion, one people, one leader, eventually for a one linguistic ghetto. Unity in diversity can only come from humanity not from “Pancha Maha Balawegaya”, “Our Leader Prabaharan”, “worker of the world unite” nor from Peaceful religions.

      There is more to ponder.

      Keep hope alive.

      • 0
        5

        Dear Native,

        So we started calling ourselves Sinhalese in 1890 …Right.

        But the Tamil Buddhists, 12.000 of them got a mention in Old Colonial’s Lankan Census in 1881…

        Wonder what my ancestors called themselves then . Portugese , Dutch , English or just Adevasis or Rohingas or is it t Kallathony.

        No wonder your Vellala CM wants only separate mini Eelams for the Kallathonies and the Mussos to keep them together with us, in one.

        • 3
          0

          KASmaalam KA Sumanasekera

          You typed:

          “So we started calling ourselves Sinhalese in 1890 …Right.”

          I wrote:

          The phrase Sinhalese Buddhist came into fashion about 125 years ago.

          Sinhalese, Buddhist and Sinhala/Buddhists

          Sinhalese – A people who speak Sinhala Language

          Buddhists – Those who adhere to Buddha’s (the awakened one) teaching.

          Sinhala/Buddhists – is just another politicised and popularised phrase used by the crooked politicians and supported by a parochial bigoted noisy minority.

    • 4
      2

      Alahakoon

      “Foe example, BuddhaGosha wrote VisuddhiMagga (500BC) in Jethawanarama, consulting great Sinhalese buddhist monks there)…”

      Actually, 500 CE, not BC.

      Buddhaghoṣa (Thai: พระพุทธโฆษาจารย์, Chinese: 覺音/佛音) was a 5th-century Indian Theravada Buddhist commentator and scholar. His best-known work is the Visuddhimagga “Path of Purification”, a comprehensive summary and analysis of the Theravada understanding of the Buddha’s path to liberation. The interpretations provided by Buddhaghosa have generally constituted the orthodox understanding of Theravada scriptures since at least the 12th century CE. He is generally recognized by both Western scholars and Theravadins as the most important commentator of the Theravada.

      Writings and translations

      Buddhaghosa was reputedly responsible for an extensive project of synthesizing and translating a large body of Sinhala commentaries on the Pāli Canon. His Visuddhimagga (Pāli: Path of Purification) is a comprehensive manual of Theravada Buddhism that is still read and studied today. The Mahavamsa ascribes a great many books to Buddhaghosa’s composition, some of which are not believed to have been his work, but rather were composed later and attributed to him.

      There is a listing of the fourteen commentaries on the Pāli Canon traditionally ascribed to Buddhaghosa, the Aṭṭhakathā:

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Buddhaghosa

      The Question still remains, why only a few Tamil Buddhists in Sri Lanka and only a few Sinhala Hindus.

  • 14
    0

    Buddhism can protect itself. It spread from India to China to Japan to Korea and eastwards to Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, etc. all through the superiority of its internal force as a philosophy. No one needs to delude himself by thinking he or she protects Buddhism. Buddhism is a non-proselytizing religion which maintains its hold throughout the world because its message of kindness and peace appeals to many in a troubled world. It does not need the Sinhalese to protect it. To say that they protect Buddhism is to negate the very essence of Buddhism.

    • 10
      2

      Ponkoh Sivakumaran

      Buddhism can protect itself.

      In this island and elsewhere crooks, murderers, and corrupt politicians and state bureaucrats have take upon themselves to destroy the teachings of the enlightened one.

      They have been working very hard on that project, ever since they found out the combination of religion and language, a nasty lethal cocktail works very well in their interest.

      Forget the people who adhere to and abide by the precepts.

    • 8
      0

      At a recent debate on multi religion , Buddhism was discussed .
      Of course the religion appeals to many non Buddhists due to its message of Peace, Non violence and Tolerance.

      Srilanka too represented as a Practicing country with Buddhists majority.
      Questions on Religious tolerance and violence towards non Buddhists were raised among the guests by the Panel ! and so too were asked what kind of achievements each country have achieved with these noble qualities in a multi cultural country like Srilanka and other countries.
      The reply from the Srilankan representative was that she/he was proud of BUDDHISM in the country and NOUGHT ELSE , to be proud of .
      The question was aimed at finding whether this noble religion have anything else to endorse as a successful multicultural nation , successful economically , and so on .

      That was a very selfish ignorant absurd reply by the representative , the religion alone will not bring economic success to a nation. To be proud of ones religion , OK. ! Nothing else for the nation to progress I WOULD SAY IS EQUAL TO COMMITING SUICIDE.
      TOTAL NEGLECT OF YOUR NATION WHERE YOU LIVE.

      THis is the kind of mentality of these Theravada Budddhists in Srilanka.
      They live in a bubble who are mentored by these Propagandists Buddhist Priests with the modern day fabricated Buddha preachings and Bashing of other Noble Religious Beliefs.

      Oh! Really !! Wonder What the other Religious believers of SL may be proud of ? Proud of the Banana Republic??
      Proud of Pilfering the State or the Faulty Justice System , or of the Rising Catalogue of Murders and Pilfering of the Donations to Flood victims…….
      All in the name of BUDDHISM TO BE PROUD OF!!!

      The story of Bubbles of Frogs in wells .

      • 1
        4

        Sri Lanka is in this calamity because unfortunately the minorities and even parts of the majority are Tamils.Even to defeat Prabahakaran only a Karawa Fonseka tamil could as the mentality of the Tamil cruelty and selfishness cannot be easily overcome. Others in the Sinhala community are too gentle. Be it in India or else where they are a selfish bunch. Tamils in India have problems with karanataka and are a mistrusted and cannot get on well with other states.

        • 4
          0

          vas

          Are you being serious when majority of Tamils and Sinhalese share their Genetics with Tamil Nadu Tamils?

          Are you one of the siblings of sachoo the stupid II or her daughter?

          I suppose you are another practitioner of Sinhala/Buddhist social anthropology.

          • 0
            3

            native veddah
            no sinhalese worth his salt has any tamil blood. Tamils are proven in this site to be degenerate. Para sinhala, para buddhist, mahavansa mentality are the derogatory words in their vocabulary. they do not even have the courage to mention their tamil names. They are degenerate probably better off in india with their likes.

            • 4
              0

              vas

              Are you known in this forum by other names such as sachoooooo the stupid II, Nuisance the stupid I, sarojini, ….. ?

              Get someone else to type your rant as it is showing up.

  • 3
    8

    Ranga Kalansooriya has written a dumb article. You had guts to write that you have Doctorate too.

    The name Sinhala Buddhists were given by LTTE Tamils.

    How about british venerating their queen, americans venerating their flag, muslims saying allah after every sentence they talk.

    Sinhla civilization is intertwined with Buddhism and they have a unique civilization built based on buddhism and agriculture.

    Probably, you are a christian who does not know about sinhala culture.

  • 6
    0

    What was the mother tongue of Arahat Mahinda and how did he converse with south Indians.
    How was his sermon understood by King Theva Nampiya Theesan a.k.a Devanampiyatissa resulting in the only mass religious conversion in history of an entire nation, overnight, to Buddhism.

  • 2
    6

    Either Callum McRae or the Diaspora must have funded this?.

    US State Dept says LTTE Fund raising was going on unabated.even in 2015.

    But the deposits in Banks pay only 00 %.

    So they may be looking for other returns, plus at least a couple of % if possible, by making these Nadu movies to bag Sinhala Buddhism.

    Only audience they will get are the Yahapalana suckers who love to see the Buddhists getting bashed.

    And our young lovers who look for a cheap private parking spot for a couple of hours, on a day off from work, or even from school.

    • 4
      0

      Well Spotted Kamasutra aka. KAS ,
      Buddhist Bashing did you say ?? Where I wonder ?
      In the Private Parking spots where your young lovers meet??

      What Parking spot ? Like to hear more of your Riddles!! While I enjoy the Matinée show.

    • 3
      0

      KASmaalam KA Sumanasekera

      “Only audience they will get are the Yahapalana suckers who love to see the Buddhists getting bashed.”

      Have you seen the movie?

  • 8
    0

    Buddhism is attractive to the modern world for the simple reason that it teaches one to deal with the problems caused by a world that is suffering from human greed, where money is king, where there is wasteful acquisition of goods, politicians are corrupt and even the monks and priests of all religions are after status and wealth. Neoliberalism is making rich richer and the poor, poorer. There is ostentatious living by the rich while the poor suffer. This situation will result in violence.

    In this context, the philosophy of Buddhism becomes attractive. It teaches care for the fellow human being, indeed for all living things. It teaches that man belongs to one species. it is owing to his ignorance that national pride (avannati) racial feelings (jativitakka) and national feelings which are mistaken notions hide the truth of the oneness of human beings and living things. (I take all this from the writings of a great scholar, the late Professor KN Jayatilleke, Professor of Buddhist Civilization at Peradeniya.

    It would be good that if people who profess Buddhism practice its teachings rather than claim ownership of the philosophy.

    This ignorance is exploited by the Sri Lankan politician whose corrupt life depends on feeding racial hatred. Ranga Kalansooria must be thanked for writing about this film which is based on Kannagi’s power of righteousness and justice, a very Buddhist theme. Professor Ariyaratne has done great service to the people of our country.

  • 9
    1

    The phrase “Singhala Buddhism” mainly used to reflect racial, cruel,inhuman, war criminal, criminal, genocide mixture of meaning.

    • 2
      1

      Theravada Buddhism / Sinhala Buddhism , one to be proud of , the country to be proud of …… Which Promotes Religious intolerance, Materialistic Greed, Non vegetarianism, Disharmony , and war mongering within ones state causing blood shed among innocent Men women and children , depriving fellow country men and women of their rights??

      These acts of savagery, and Barbarism one to be proud of the Religion ?? No No No.

      The noble Religion should not be used for these vile acts of Barbarism.

    • 0
      4

      Who got killed from them ?

      Monkies.

      • 5
        0

        jim softy the Dimwit

        “Who got killed from them ? Monkies.”

        I can see the monkey. It survived and types and asks stupid question.

    • 1
      1

      Pacs

      “The phrase “Singhala Buddhism” mainly used to reflect racial, cruel,inhuman, war criminal, criminal, genocide mixture of meaning.”

      Just like the Spanish Catholic The phrase “Spanish Catholic” mainly used to reflect racial, cruel,inhuman, war criminal, criminal, genocide mixture of meaning.

  • 1
    0

    Onward to read ‘A long watch ‘ by Sunila Galappatti and watch ‘Pattini’ of
    Prof Ariyaratna.

  • 2
    0

    I am proud of what the sinhalese speakers of Sri Lanka of yore has done to sustain this universal religion in the subcontinent of its origin. Sri Lanka is the ONLY majority buddhist country in this whole subcontinent!

    This is NOT to say that buddhism “belongs” to the Sinhalese or to Sri Lanka. Like all other cultural products buddhism too has benefited from and incorporated aspects of all cultures it encountered during its spread east, south, north and now west.

    The sinhalese do have a special place in documenting the Tripitaka – a pivotal text for theravadins in Asia, and should be rightfully proud.

    I have often thought that the remaining Tamil Buddhists could act as a link between the Tamils and Sinhalese. Hope those residing in Jaffna can work together to bring these coreligionists together to build bridges of peace.

    • 2
      0

      A good thought you have shared you.
      Thank you.

    • 6
      0

      sinhalese buddhist

      “The sinhalese do have a special place in documenting the Tripitaka – a pivotal text for theravadins in Asia, and should be rightfully proud.”

      Maybe, the Sinhalese did play a historical role in preserving and propagating Buddhism however, Sinhala/Buddhist (a noisy minority) are not only destroying it with their stupid political majoritarian mindset but also the the very people they purport to protect.

      Now if you want to promote and preserve Buddhism this is the time for you to act, act fast, liberate both Sinhalese and Buddhists from Sinhala/Buddhists who are nothing but a bunch of parochial, inward looking, bigoted, self destructive, …. stupid morons.

      Find out who you are? Are you Sinhalese who is happened to be Buddhist? Are you a Buddhists who is also happened to be a Sinhalese? Until you find an answer to these questions you will remain a pain in the neck to all people in this island.

      • 0
        4

        Native Veddo:

        Dumb Tamils know what is best for Sinhala buddhists.

        • 3
          0

          jim softy dimwit

          “Dumb Tamils know what is best for Sinhala buddhists.”

          Do you think you know what is best for both Tamils and Sinhalese?

      • 0
        0

        Native Vedda RE: sinhalese buddhist

        “Find out who you are? Are you Sinhalese who is happened to be Buddhist? Are you a Buddhists who is also happened to be a Sinhalese? “

        Find out who you are? Are you a PARA-Sinhalese who is happened to be Buddhist? Are you a Buddhists who is also happened to be a PARA-Sinhalese?…

        In the Land of Native Veddah Aethho

        • 0
          2

          Amarasiri,
          Para Tamils of Jaffna who were brought as slaves for the tobacco industry by the Dutch is the cause of all evil. Stop your stupid pretence of being a veddah and put your tamil name. Even that is a pretence. You are pathetic

  • 0
    0

    Buddhism is a good religion. Period. All the rest is bul !

  • 3
    0

    Please waste the time and energy on debating on racial superiority. Your begging bowl will surely be filled from heaven .

  • 1
    1

    Greatest problem for Sri Lanka is having too many Aacaariyas and Mahaachaariyas. We cannot walk on grass path for fear of trampling one of these creatures. When they feel like getting some recognition write some rubbish creating ha-ho. The well known joker Gananath Obeysekera lived on sinhala culture,Buddhism and anything and everythingin this country that can be sold in the westand hoodwink the westerners to earn his bread and butter . Prabhakaran is nothing when compared to these worthless aachaariya’s and mahaachaariya’s the terminators of sinhala nation and Buddhism. Let all these traitors suffer in hell forever.

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