16 October, 2021

Blog

The “Let Us Pray” Culture & Its Inanities

By S. Ratnajeevan H. Hoole

Prof. Ratnajeevan Hoole

I am not putting down prayer or its effectiveness. I endorse both. What I am writing about here is the use of “Let us pray” to escape responsibility, responsibility to form opinions and responsibility to act. It is an escape route freely exploited by crooked Christians to escape justice – for themselves and their friends – and by good Christians to let off and evade forming opinions against their friends caught in crookedness.

I have seen massive fraud by pastors in a Christian College. It is a time to review this, given the charges of unethical conversions against the church. These charges, I assess, are without basis because the converts I see show a new reformed life. The real problem however, is with some – note some – of the pastors who raise cash abroad for the church and then spend it on themselves. Although donors give money for specific items like Christian Education, the money sometimes – even once is all too often – goes to sustain an extravagant life-style by pastors. The saying in Trinco is that people who went about scouring for kaakaa muttais (crows eggs) to eat, are now “reverends” feasting on biriyani.

That crow-egg to biriyani life-style change needs some pilfering to sustain. When they get caught, most of their followers are reluctant to expose their pastors because it would give a bad name for the church. But when they are asked to give account, in one instance the pastors hired the legal team of N.R. Sivendran and Co. from Colombo for Rs. 925,000 with bills still coming in. These rates, well above those recommended by the Bar Association, show the vast powers these pastors have to draw from institutional  funds flowing from donors,  with no one to question them.

Sumanthiran Meeting Press after Win Today

This is not an accusation against only the new church pastors, because as I have noted elsewhere in these pages, Anglican archdeacons (some with questionable academic credentials and even suspensions as theological students) were assigned Rs. 100 lakhs per archdeacon for their cars under Bishop Dhilo Canagasabey. Just like in the free churches, there was no peep from the managers (Standing Committee) supposedly safeguarding church assets.

Thankfully, the new Bishop Dushyantha Rodrigo has stopped the practice saying in my presence that “priests should not go about like company CEOs.” Bishop Rodrigo himself has asked for a van although those who bought luxury cars earlier want him also to go for a luxury car, seemingly wanting to redeem themselves for what they did.

The firm of auditors, Manievannan & Co., Chartered Accountants, has clearly identified fraud at a particular college – for example a) a large cash cheque for Rs. 501,000 issued with a date preceding the date of invoice and encashed by an employee who took it to the bank; b) Over Rs. 700,000 handled as petty cash and with that in hand getting more petty cash which was spent on another missionary institution with no board authorization and no evidence of the money being returned as claimed; c) Large amounts of income accepted as cash and handled as if it is petty cash without banking it, and then spending it with no receipts to show.

Manivannan & co. say “these [transactions]  amount to cash misappropriation which can be termed as fraud by whoever was responsible. This view is based on standard accounting principles that should be expected to be followed by the Chartered Accountants Institute, and any Accounting principles that blatantly violate these [are] termed fraud.”

Yet, with the exception of college President Dr. Sam Thevabalasingham who as far back as in April 2020 asked the matter to be reported to the police, there was general reluctance. This has now been rectified and has been moved from the Police to FCID because of the size of the fraud, but many are shocked and think it is wrong to report “anointed” crooks to the police. After all, the perpetrators go as Reverends and Brothers. One of them threatened “You do not know what will happen if we pray against you.”

The matter is in court. The accused pastors have hired a legal team paying a fortune. For that money the Senior Counsel could have spent a little more effort in his press statement where he garbles the story by blaming his own client from LEADS. What an Advocate at Rs. 925,000 rupees!

When the story broke, the reaction was typical. Forgive, settle it out of court. Love one another etc. There was no word on repentance or the return of the stolen money given by hardworking Christians for a precious cause. Two donors correctly withdrew saying they wanted to see accounts, but a third simply hid behind love, forgiveness and prayer. Would their own givers want their funds used like this, and stolen funds forgiven without a “Sorry”? And those who stole still left in charge without even a sorry?

We are encouraging and growing a goody-goody Christianity. Recently a clergyman gave me a flier on “What is spiritual maturity?” It claimed that a) Spiritual Maturity is when you stop trying to change others, …instead focus on changing  yourself b) Spiritual Maturity is when you accept people as they are. And c) Spiritual Maturity is when you understand everyone is right in their own perspective. So stealing pastors are right. Murdering Generals and Ministers are right in their own perspective and should be left alone.

That is not Christian theology. Good religion must change people for the better, and good religion will teach us what “better” is. Religion is not being nice to our friends. It demands harsh opinions when necessary.

The Diocese of Colombo of the Church of Ceylon seems to be practicing this “comfortable Christianity.” The Diocese has abandoned its Tamil members with a horrible prayerbook translation that calls God unholy. The Anglican Liturgy has taken off appellations like Almighty in “Almighty God,” etc., etc. It was done under the Chairmanship of Rev. Joshua Ratnam who is popular because he is into music and the church does not want to embarrass a popular priest by correcting the liturgy as resolved by the Diocesan Council. As a good lady tried to explain, it is a printer’s error. What? The consistent deletion of “Almighty” in many places is accidental? It shows how far this goody-goody Christianity will go to overlook every fault. As a result, all Tamils have been abandoned to save Ratnam’s reputation and we Tamils need to continue to call God unholy until Bishop Rodrigo finds the time for the next printing of our prayerbook. 

Ratnam came from Trinity College to my class at St. John’s and was placed in the Division for those who had already sat the OLs once – Special V as I recall. After the OL results came in he vanished with a dramatic exit saying his calling is to do drama. Presumably, he did not qualify for Form VI. In Council he made vain arguments that “God without holiness and destruction” can be read as God is Holy depending on how one reads it. To the Sinhalese in Council, he had explained himself! They bought it. The Bishop tried to make excuses saying the Liturgy is not by Ratnam alone but by a Commission. There again, many on the Commission are Sinhalese knowing no Tamil, and many of the Tamils are not competent to the extent of crafting an authorized liturgy. This is why the church has to stress academic matters, and not keep down priests like Rev. Stephen Jebachelvan with a B.Sc. from Peradeniya because that disqualifies him in the eyes of the Church from everything in the Church lest he prove how much better a national university educated person can be as a priest.

Despite ignoring the spiritual well-being of Tamil Anglicans, Bishop Rodrigo at council has made, and continues to make, good statements on human rights. For example in Dec. 2020 the church said,

We are saddened by the deterioration of democratic norms such as the denial of Islamic burial rights, the massacre at the Mahara Prison, the increasing centralization of power in the Executive and the weakening of Parliament, the large budgetary allocation for defence, questionable appointments to important public positions in Sri Lanka, and the trend towards the undermining of civil administration and increased militarization, where the liberty of citizens and communities and their aspirations are not respected.”

I too voted for it. I felt good about it. However, making us all feel good is all it did. What does it really do? Nothing, I am afraid, because power structures remain, leaving people like Gotabaya Rajapaksa entrenched in power. No one is directly blamed in the goody-goody Church. We only say nice things.

Tuesday 16.03.2021 was the day for our Standing Committee meeting. We were going through the agenda item “Church and Nation.” As inanities that make no difference were discussed, I told the Bishop, “At the UNHRC a resolution is coming up on 22.03.2020. It can make a big difference, taking our killers to justice. May we endorse it and issue a press statement?” There was a long silence.

Then the Bishop hummed and hawed. He said sweet nothings. I specifically asked the Bishop whether he agreed with the UNHCR resolution. Instead of answering he said “People from both sides have died,” and did not want to get involved. However, this resolution is not about people who died. It is about punishing those who killed people extra-judicially on the beaches of Mullivaikal in cold blood. It is about taking to justice our Generals who have killed Tamils and been rewarded with big office. And it is a lot more like reconciliation if one reads it. The Angelus Bell rang, letting the Bishop off the hook. We prayed!

Thereafter, a nationalist, The Rev. Niroshan de Mel, Vicar of St. Michael’s Polwatte, who was the only one besides the Bishop to speak, said the UN is a place where politics is played out, countries have agendas and we should not get involved.  Some truth in that, but it is not an excuse to protect murderers, least by a Church. The caring human rights mask came off the play-safe church. Those who usually propose human rights resolutions had lost their tongue as they played safe not to disagree with the Bishop.

We prayed again as the meeting closed, thereby making the Church lose its chance to be on the right side of history. That Tuesday we needed 24 of the 47 UNHRC votes but were sure only of 20. Today  (19.03.2021) I am told that the votes are there. The Church missed the bus playing safe.

The government it seems is increasingly going mad. There was the COVID burial fiasco. The Burqa ban now is finishing off any hope for the government of more Muslim votes at the UNHCR even as Mahinda Rajapaksa is personally lobbying Bangladesh and the President is telephoning Muslim countries – in vain in my opinion. Today (19.03.2021) in Jaffna a judge threw out the case filed against a Tamil newspaper for displaying V. Prabhakaran’s picture while ignoring Sinhalese newspapers for doing the same. The Police are willing to stooge by filing meaningless cases to be positively noticed by a government that should really pull-up policemen who bring disrepute to our country by filing these mad cases, a prosecute effective prosecutors and lawyers like Hejaaz Hizbullah who helped save the country in 2018 and evidence from children crucial to his vindication is not moving forward because the Supreme Court is taking its own cool time in hearing the children’s case.

A country cannot survive on yes-men and stooges whether in the police or the judiciary, and celebrating murderers in high office. If we will not punish our murderers, unfortunately the UN has to. Let us pray. Let the UN act if we will not.

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Latest comments

  • 20
    2

    Prof RH

    Thank your a well written article questioning the morals of us all/accountability at all levels specially at religious places.

    We have similar issues in all the religious places too yet to be discussed openly by the respective followers. You have set a good bar by doing just that.

    Thank you

    • 8
      2

      “and evidence from children crucial to his vindication is not moving forward because the Supreme Court is taking its own cool time in hearing the children’s case.”
      Careful dear Professor Hoole. It is better that you speak carefully . People like you won’t be any use to us languishing in Angunakolapelessa for contempt of court.

      • 3
        5

        Prof. Ratnajeevan Hoole,
        .
        Thank you for the article.
        .
        Sri Lanka is a Sinhala Buddhist country.
        And as your article indicates you all enjoy and practice your religion at ease.
        .
        Please be kind enough to return the favour by respecting our institutions such as SL Police and Our Gallant Military.
        They are the pillers which holds the freedom you happily enjoy.

        • 1
          0

          Dear S. C. Pasqual,
          .
          And if we don’t respect you or your institutions? Yes, we know the risks that we are running.
          .
          Whether any military is really gallant, I don’t know. There may be individuals, of course.
          .
          I have no time to locate the best analysis of the famous Tennyson poem, but I have seen an analysis that shows that even he was aware of the horrendous undertones he wove into his poem:
          .
          https://artscolumbia.org/compare-representation-war-owens-exposure-tennysons-charge-light-brigade-21865/
          .
          Of course, we are concerned here about our Sinhalese heroes. Yes, the “Hasalaka Veeraya” who decided to give up his monk’s robes for an Army Uniform was gallant by any standards. He was from a poor family. The guys we condemn are many of the powerful generals.
          .
          And what about this 3-minute Youtube in which a high-ranking police officer speaks of “our government”.
          .
          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OFbSEUeKi9o
          .
          I know that I am seriously at risk.

        • 1
          0

          Ms. SCP,
          .
          Please go back to school.In Japan, even septagenarian females go to Universities making use of precious time for studying further. Education is the only way you guys to avoid being caught by easy tricks being played on you. Btw, Srilanka is not a buddhist country but the truth is it is multi religious/multi ethnic country. We should be proud of that.
          :
          And srilanken buddhist are not real buddhists- I have sufficient data to prove that if anyone would challenge against. Look at Rajapakshes. That is the best example for pseudo buddhists. Besides, Buddhagama is just a life style, being introduced to srilanka long ago, unfortunatley, it is miles away from true teachings of Lord buddha.
          :
          Real buddhist practices I got to know in Europe and California. I have no doubt, if you have a brain the size of a mustard seed, it is not yet too late you too to educate you through self-learning on the web. It is not too much to ask.

          And my belief is you the like SLAVEs are no longer there, this nation would see it right easily. God bless srilanka “

      • 5
        2

        old codger

        “People like you won’t be any use to us languishing in Angunakolapelessa for contempt of court.”

        Can’t he apply for political asylum to Chinese immigration authorities in Hambantota? Its less than 40 miles from Angunakolapelessa.

    • 7
      1

      CT

      Could anyone supply us a copy of what is infamously come to be known as
      ” diplomatic dispatches filed by Lt. Col. Anthony Gash the Defence Attache of the British High Commission”.

      • 3
        9

        Native Kudda,
        .
        Going to start “Old News Paper Collection Business”…??
        .
        Good for you.

        • 8
          2

          S. C. Passqual

          “Going to start “Old News Paper Collection Business”…??”

          We are not in 19th century but in 21st century.
          Where you will see paperless class rooms, paperless offices, paperless toilets, …. paperless libraries, paperless communication, ……………
          Being a stupid Gota’s b***s carrier we know you are 300 years behind rest of the world.

          • 1
            5

            Mr. Native kudda,
            .
            And….
            Brainless idiots like you….
            .
            We understand.

            • 2
              0

              S. C. Passqual

              “We understand.”

              Really?

  • 15
    3

    Thank you, Jeevan, for another straight shooting article and for speaking the truth when everyone around you is vacillating and worse, cowing to the bandicoots in power. The power of your pen is potent, and may your ink never dry.

    I do not understand the nuanced reference to Sumanthiran – I do hope that it is not about to disappoint those who hold him in high esteem. Can someone clarify please?

    I was in awe of this statement, which refers to some crooked clergyman: “That crow-egg to biriyani life-style change needs some pilfering to sustain”

    I thought to myself, with regard to those who hold the highest office and the highest powers in our dear land, and couldn’t help but twist Jeevan’s phrase a little, to:

    “That cattle-stealing to Caviar and Lamborghini life-style change needs some pilfering to sustain” .

    Yup, damn right!

  • 3
    9

    How fortunate the mankind would be if only there is someone to listen to our prayers.

    Soma

    • 5
      1

      soman

      Recently my Tamil friend told me that applications are being received from candidates for Trainee Hindu Priests. Would you be interested being trained as “Sivachariars”. You will have plenty of opportunities to go abroad, earn loads of Tax Free cash in hand money.

      Instead of rioting and looting you must take up priest hood, benefits:
      You get to meet plenty of well to do people, depending on your public relation skills you will be asked/invited/hired to officiate religious/social functions. Every function brinks Tonnes of dollars/Sterlings/Euros, ….

      In a short period of time you can build your own temple.

      Think about it.
      The only problem is that you will have to work hard, according to my friend unlike government job in Sri Lanka, this is a business.

      • 0
        2

        NV
        Which god is in charge of ‘Human Rights and UN Matters’ ?
        I would like the Poosari in that Kovil.

        Soma

        • 2
          0

          soman

          “Which god is in charge of ‘Human Rights and UN Matters’ ?
          I would like the Poosari in that Kovil.”

          As far as I know Mahinda Rapaksa is the first god of UNHRC, followed by Vasu Nayakkar, and Thadi Priyantha.

          By the way Sri Lanka has won UNHRC voting:
          No vote …………………………………………. 11
          Abstained……………………………………… 14

          Total in favour of Sri Lanka…………25

          Total in favour of resolution…………22

          25>22
          G L Pieris school of counting.

          Therefore Tamil Diaspora, Imperialist West, UK, Sambandan, Sumandran, …… and others have lost the resolution.

          Congratulations

  • 3
    7

    Either YOUR battery is down or credit expired or no signal or GOD is busy or not in a coverage area or switched off.
    Don’t give up.

    Soma

    • 5
      1

      soman

      Could you delay your communication with god for a couple of minutes.
      Increasingly boards are being written only in Chinese language.
      When did you amend the constitution to to have Chinese as the only official, commercial, communication, …..language?

      Do you think Anagarika fought Brits to have Chinese as the only official language of this island?

      • 0
        2

        NV
        What is wri

        Soma

        • 0
          2

          What is written in Chinese?
          Looks like ‘ andara demala’

          Soma

  • 4
    1

    Dear MR.HOOL
    please be cool.this type of thinks are taking place in all religions.you can see most big mouth politically connected BUDIST PRIESTS in Lanaka going around in expensive vehicles.some time back in CANADA a so called Hindu priest went to a car dealership with more than 50 thousand dollars in cash to buy a car and supposed to have been referred to Canada police and tax department.

  • 11
    0

    (Mark 11:15-19; Luke 19:45-48; John 2:12-25)

    “And Jesus went into the temple of God, and cast out all them that sold and bought in the temple, and overthrew the tables of the money-changers, and the seats of them that sold doves, and said unto them, It is written, My house shall be called the house of prayer; but ye have made it a den of thieves.”

    • 11
      0

      Dr. KD,
      And this: “… it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.” (Matthew 19:23-26)

      The contradictions are for those who believe in religions to sort out. As an agnostic, I remain proud of the integrity –the lack of such contradictions– in my life, while maintaining the cultural morality inculcated at a young age. I advocate a universal moral code, which may or may not be drawn from some of the better religious teachings.

      So, China cannot get away with HR violations saying it is based on ‘Asian values,’ nor can the West get away with its numerous moral contradictions and transgressions. Regardless of what happens at the UNHRC– I never had much faith in the UNHRC process, as there is no cohesion at the UNSC–, GR and other war criminals in SL will have to face justice one way or another.

      • 1
        1

        Agnos,
        You tell that you are an ‘agnostic’. You also tell that GR and other war criminals in SL will have to face justice one way or another.
        You don’t seem to ‘know’ the contradiction in the two statements. I am not surprised!

        • 5
          1

          Nathan,

          The contradictions are yours, not mine.
          I am not expecting some form of divine justice. I meant that people and civil society organizations shouldn’t let up. If, at some point, the victims take the law into their own hands, who can blame them?
          I see my role as keeping the issue alive, not throwing up my hands seeking divine intervention.

          • 1
            0

            Agnos ,
            I never said that you are speaking of divine justice. Your ‘one way or another’ leads to it.

            • 3
              0

              It could also be used as a pep talk.

            • 1
              0

              Dear Nathan,
              .
              I feel that you are a committed Christian, and a deeply religious person. I remember how you once told me that you had, for some time, been a teacher at S. Thomas’, Mt Lavinia. You try, therefore to be faithful to the Institution. I respect that stand.
              .
              I feel that if Agnos, Professor Hoole, you, and me, were to work together, we will get on fine. We’d agree on all practical matters. On matters metaphysical, none of us is absolutely sure. You believe, where you cannot prove. We remain sceptical about what our limited human minds cannot understand. Let us respect one another!
              .
              Most of my observations are getting put at the very bottom of the comments.

      • 2
        1

        What are our norms of HR and its violation in scheme of affairs where stealing the product of another’s toil is the norm, and is protected as right to private property.
        Are you sure that China claimed “Asian values” as its basis of HR?
        *
        Agnos, can you explain why some of us (certainly not you) who scream about national oppression ignore caste oppression and gender oppression.

        • 3
          0

          SJ,

          China’s leaders may not claim Asian values, but its defenders like Kishore Mahbubhani of Singapore often do.

          The West’s foundational values are subject to vigorous debate, and plenty of people argue about coming up with a better system.

          During the war years, national oppression was the most overwhelming issue. Caste and gender oppression were a part of the struggle for many militant groups, but they were subsumed in what they termed as ‘national liberation.’ It is also true that some middle and upper-class people can’t bring themselves to confront caste and gender as issues. If you look at Tamil society in Canada, I am hearing a lot is changing, and caste is slowly becoming less of an issue there. Hopefully, that change will spread back to SL.

          • 2
            0

            Agnos
            It is better to hear what China says, as it has constantly taken a specific position on the matter, and it is in the public domain.
            *
            If you think that caste and gender are things of the past, you should visit the north of this country.
            I wrote recently about how the Vellala land owners refused to allow a canal to be dug across their land to drain flood water from Dalit owned land. The Dalits had to relocate until the flood water seeped through the ground.
            You may not have heard about caste Hindus in Putthur insisting on maintaining a crematorium amid Dalit settlements. Even after a court ruling supportive of the home owners, mischief continued. Who appears in court for the mischief makers? Tamil nationalist politicians.
            *
            As yourself why there are far fewer women social activists among Tamils than among Sinhalese.
            We cannot wish problems away. The struggle needs to go on.
            *
            As for Canada, have you taken a look at marriage ads?
            For a group with not much to take pride in, there are only caste and an imagined ancient glory to fall back on.

            • 2
              0

              SJ,

              I haven’t visited SL in a long-time and I agree I may be out of touch. My info about Canada is mostly anecdotal from friends and relatives. Tamil society needs to change a lot, there is no doubt about it.

              • 0
                1

                Agnos
                Thanks.
                There are changes in conduct of public business. One cannot insult one by naming caste. Members of depressed communities are going for education and white collar employment.
                My complaint is about attitude. Caste consciousness is deeply rooted in many minds.
                Urbanization has not helped as much as it could have.
                Because of the war wedding and funeral related ceremonies became simplified here. But those who went abroad have improvised on tradition, only to vulgarize it.
                Here too old habits are returning with cash flow.
                Wealthy Dalits are concerting their traditional places of worship into Braminic temples. They can find Brahmin priests because the have the money. But caste segregation endures.
                If you know Akilan Kadirgamar (he writes a column for the DM regularly) ask him. He is active among the weaker sections of the community, and can tell you much more about Jaffna Tamil society than I can.

              • 1
                0

                “Tamil society needs to change a lot.” As for us, Sinhalese we need a total transformation!
                .
                Once we accept that, Agnos, there can be progress.
                .
                It is the Muslims in the country whom our “unsatisfactory government” are trying to provoke. About four years ago, there was a push from within the community to change in some ways. I support the burqa ban, the need for MMDA reform, and the need to outlaw Female Genital Mutilation. Shreen Saroor has recently said that it is more prevalent than most of us imagine.
                .
                However, I oppose vehemently the way in which this government is setting about all this.
                .
                “The last temptation is the greatest treason,
                To do the right deed for the wrong reason”.
                T.S. Eliot

      • 7
        0

        …..”I advocate a universal moral code, which may or may not be drawn from some of the better religious teachings”……
        While fully endorsing the idea, such Utopian hopes, will remain hopes.
        Most Mankind generally tends to be vile and self interested, and a UME will never find universal acceptance/agreement. But let us keep are hopes alive.

        • 1
          0

          Dear MyView,
          .
          There are some long comments that I have put in during the dying minutes for comments on this article.
          .
          I have worded my vies quite differently, but what I have said accords more or less with what you say here – now that I see again what you’ve written.

      • 1
        0

        Logic – the power of reasoning is certainly on our side. Abandon it, and you open the doors for all sorts of weird theories to enter.
        .
        However, many, like Nathan, will state that they have an experience of God and certain attendant insights. Some are honest, others are quite simply crooks.
        .
        “By their fruit ye shall know them.”
        .
        Nathan has always been good and decent. I respect him immensely.

    • 8
      0

      Even the text cited may not have reached us if not for the power and wealth of Christian establishments.
      Religion everywhere is great business.

    • 0
      0

      Wealth and power have destroyed the heart of religions. From the Vatican to the Anglicans and even the Maligawa. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Properties_and_finances_of_the_Church_of_England#:~:text=The%20Church%20of%20England%20has%20a%20large%20endowment%20of%20%C2%A3,of%2010%25%20(2019).

  • 7
    0

    Greetings Mr.Hoole,
    Good and candid article,
    It is not just Christians, it would be not fair to only accuse one religion , as far as my opinion is concerned all organized religions have in some way or other similar issues.
    But if you are a Christian , then yes you have the right to speak out .

    As I identify myself as a Muslim, I have all the right for my.opinion only of my faith.

    I.consider all organized Islamic religions have failed the message and as for me they are totally irrellevent and I have no need of man made organised Islamic religions to believe in God , glorify him/ most importantly serve him by serving The people , believe in his scripture and In his messenger.

    My opion is all the rituals ,.all the demands of arabizing the culture, insisting women to be cladeded in Arab tribal Attires, loud sermons, challenging other faiths ,trying to add numbers in competition ,.some make their organised religion not penetrable and secretive and subjugating their members , are all un Islamic and deceitful systems to control the members to keep them subjugated, while Islam in reality a religion that prohibits compulsion and is the the most democratic.
    Cont.

  • 5
    6

    Tamils have lost the case against SL Army officer who threatened to slit the throats of Tamils.

    Another defeat for Tamils.

    UK court decided he had diplomatic immunity! Why not Tamil has diplomatic immunity?

    • 3
      0

      GATAM,
      .
      Why can’t you stay on topic? This article has to do with a small Christian church, but the moment you see an article written by a Tamil-speaking man you crow about supposed victories for (Sinhalese) government.
      .
      That defeat in a London court is for all of us who want justice to prevail.

  • 0
    1

    Cont.
To boast of large numbers of your members in billion plus and wanting to add more by propagating and encouraging childbirth with no family planning
is the not only most irrational, it is the cause of world wide social upheaval.
    The irrational dogmas prompted ideologies are the cause for Muslims having the largest numbers in poverty, homeless , no health care , no education, women discriminated, a man made Law under the disguise of sharia to only benefit a few and irrelevant and deceitful, dogmas and interpretation of the holy Scripture using books written based on hearsay, banning science and modern education to promote the religion,by holding to values,
    Such probition are nothing but deceitful agendas of so-called mullahs and Muslim Politicians under the banner of Islam to fool the people and subgugate them and to use them as milking cows.
    How can you claim Your so many branches of Islam being the best and the only true one , when you have totally failed your commuunity? Having the largest numbers of refugees , poor starving, sick with no access to healthcare , no education and the needy of no way to.meet ends with no opportunities.
    Yet you want to convert the entire world , not to Islam , but compete with each other based on failed dogmas andideologies of eachones organised Islamic religions and calling each other none believers.

    • 0
      1

      Hope CT will.not edit out my comment or censor due to some tribal minded authors or other Muslims.

      This is a important message ,.even.the hate towards me increases and my adversaries continue to spread rumours through their circle, which include people of other faiths and harm me , who.have only become a part of such a circle , because they benefit each other through trades of environmental destruction.and smuggling ,.both which I am a strong advocate and activist against it.

  • 12
    1

    In Lanka religion has turned into business entity. Politics has taken over religion. Politicians go after religious heads. Religious head inturn talk politics.End result they all in nexus screwing our citizenry (who seems to get aroused) right royally. .

    • 0
      0

      Chiv,
      Not only in SL, but also in that region of the world – SOUTH ASIAN region is paralized by being unable to separate religion and politics. Rajapakshes or the like men would not have become leaders if srilankens were not misled. This is known to him, … that is why the buggers fish on muddy waters on and on. People are no better because they dont want to see it beyond

  • 12
    0

    Has anyone looked into politician Ranjith’s financial records ?? Name sake politician who amassed 40 million LKR (unaccounted) was acquited by courts this week.

  • 10
    1

    Professor Hoole has been doing great service to the Country by pointing out the wrong actions taken by all walks of life be it religious or non-religious/ rulers or the ruled.
    The FINANCIAL or non-Financial Irregularities have to be pointed out by both Printed & Social media +TV. The Appointments of “yes” men and women in “High” posts will bring disaster to the country now and for years to come. We are in a downward spiral moraly financially and culturally.

  • 9
    1

    Every time I read an article by Professor Ratnajeevan Hoole I cannot help but think that this country would not be in such an unholy and horrible mess today if only he had been appointed as the Chairman of the Election Commission the last time instead of that useless and feckless bugger Mahinda Deshapriya.

    • 4
      6

      Has an Election Commission power to control corruption and communal hatred let alone all manner of bigotry?

      • 7
        0

        Dear SJ
        Capt M’s comment was to showcase Mahinda Desha(a)priya’s let off of the dual citizenship issue of GR at nomination time with connivance of that lamppost – other Commissioner who just allowed anything without a mum. Never heard anything ever from him.
        If only RH was the EC then, things surely different.

        • 2
          1

          MV
          Did Hoole insist on proof of renunciation of US citizenship?
          I doubt.
          But I did not denounce him for not doing so, for I knew that he was vulnerable.
          But one cannot have it both ways.

  • 12
    0

    …..” a) Spiritual Maturity is when you stop trying to change others, …instead focus on changing yourself b) Spiritual Maturity is when you accept people as they are. And c) Spiritual Maturity is when you understand everyone is right in their own perspective’……
    Hmmm. Intriguing indeed.
    a) Not changing others – means “you change yourself” and you become one of them. Ha Ha. JOIN THE BAND.
    b) Accept them as they are. Tag along and don’t rock the boat. Ha Ha, again JOIN THE BAND
    c) Everyone is right. Ha Ha. JOIN THE BAND and SING ALONG.

    What is the use of my MIND. What is the value of reasoning by using my mind. Are we human beings with the power of the mind to reason out right and wrong, or act like animals mindlessly and join the herd.
    Man’s greatest asset is the mind and power of reason.

    • 8
      0

      Dear MyView,
      That’s an interesting take you have presented:)

      But, on a serious note:(, it’s imperative to understand what it means to be spiritual. Perhaps you do!

      Though Prof. Hoole’s article here centers around religious faith and prayer within the context of religion, spirituality is most often (perhaps entirely) is difficult to marry into religious faith.

      More precisely, what the author (Native Veddah has cited Tejash Shah as the one) defines as “spiritual” is key to understanding his declarations. I have come across variations in the ideas of spirituality amongst the self-established spiritual coaches/authors/teachers.

      The last bit (as quoted by SJ), “ You gain Spiritual Maturity when you stop attaching “happiness” to material things !!” indicates to me Tejash Shah is aligned with the widely recognized spiritual fundamental.

      As you can see from Shah’s CV (as provided by NativeVedda), understanding spirituality and living it are totally different things. Practicing spirituality in its entirety is impossible in our industrialized bureaucratic livelihoods. Nonetheless, understanding it goes a long, long, long way in making the world a better place as well as in coping with the world as is.

      • 10
        0

        Dear Sug,
        Yes the initial part of my comment was frivolous indeed and was sarcastic.
        But I ended up very serious by saying : Man’s greatest asset is the mind and power of reason.
        To UNDERSTAND anything – including spirituality, you need the mind and power of reason, unless it is implied that you can understand spirituality by faith or belief, to which idea I cannot subscribe.
        Cheers

        • 2
          0

          ,,,,,implied that you can understand,,,,,,,,,,,
          Sorry regret.
          It should be general as:
          ….implied that ONE can understand…..

      • 1
        0

        S
        What I liked about Tejash Shah’s set of proposals is its sanity and spirit of tolerance. I do not believe in a spirituality higher than genuine commitment to social justice.
        I was surprised that some could take exception to item # 3 by taking it literally and extrapolating it wildly.

      • 2
        0

        Thanks, Sugandh.
        .
        Your wise words have given me the courage to work out in my own mind what I ought to be saying in relation to this article.
        .
        I’ll put it at the bottom.
        .
        How is it that you haven’t said anything about this fine article?
        .
        https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/covid-generation-education-a-blind-spot/

    • 4
      0

      MV
      “Man’s greatest asset is the mind and power of reason.”
      Very true.
      I wonder what religion has been doing to enhance this asset.
      A remarkable deviation from religious traditions is found in the Buddha’s words:“
      Do not believe in anything simply because you have heard it. Do not believe in anything simply because it is spoken and rumored by many. Do not believe in anything simply because it is found written in your religious books. Do not believe in anything merely on the authority of your teachers and elders. Do not believe in traditions because they have been handed down for many generations. But after observation and analysis, when you find that anything agrees with reason and is conducive to the good and benefit of one and all, then accept it and live up to it.”

      • 0
        0

        ps.
        Willingness to listen and to understand another’s point of view is indicative of a far healthier state of mind and expression of power of reason than childishly belittling other points of view.

        • 0
          0

          Dear SJ.
          I fully agree that one should always listen to another’s point of view and understand, but refuting any area of that is one’s right. And this to be done in good faith, forthrightly and in a civilised way and that is certainly not “Childishly belittling other points of view”.
          That is Discussion and NOT ARGUMENT.

        • 0
          0

          I hope you do not mean that “Willingness to listen and to understand another’s point of view” ends there by your understanding his view, meaning also accepting it. If not accepted, do you say Thank you and walk away without expressing your agreement or not, and not stating your contrary ideas.
          Expressing one’s own thinking or idea is not against “Willingness to listen and to understand another’s point of view” provided it is done in a considerate non violent way without hatred or rancour.

      • 3
        0

        Yes very true, SJ.
        ….”But after observation and analysis, when you find that anything agrees with REASON and is conducive to the good and benefit of one and all, then accept it and live up to it”….
        Agrees with reason = Rational to one’s own mind.
        This was my rational thinking on a), b) and c) as I said.

  • 4
    3

    “The saying in Trinco is that people who went about scouring for kaakaa muttais (crows eggs) to eat, are now “reverends” feasting on biriyani.”
    A ‘saying’ like this in Trincomalee? Targetting Christan clergy?
    Someone’s utterance, perhaps. I am otherwise truly surprised!

    • 0
      2

      Dear SJ, if yours was a serious question… Weren’t you being anal retentive?

      “The saying in Trinco…” doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s a saying of all people of Trinco or even that of all non-christians of Trinco or that of all Christians of Trinco!

      In all likelihood, it was a saying merely within the large circle with that which the author engages. I don’t think most of us expect the author to do a statistically representative sampling of all of Trinco to corroborate his statement which’s intention was merely to make a rhetorical point.

      • 2
        0

        S
        I know the place and the people. When one claims the “saying in Trinco is …” that implies far wider reference than claiming “the saying among Christians in Trinco…”.
        I even doubt if the ‘saying’ has currency among a “large circle” with that which the author engages in Trinco.
        The author is known for selecting individual opinions and make them appear to be general opinions.
        *
        If your anal reference is to one’s being “a person who is excessively orderly and fussy”, kindly go through the article and check for signs.

  • 12
    1

    I searched on the Internet and found this:
    Spiritual Maturity is when you stop trying to change others, …instead, focus on changing yourself.
    Spiritual Maturity is when you
    accept people as they are.
    Spiritual Maturity is when you understand everyone is right in their own perspective.
    Spiritual Maturity is when you learn to “let go”.
    Spiritual Maturity is when you are able to drop “expectations” from a relationship and give for the sake of giving.
    Spiritual Maturity is when you understand whatever you do, you do for your own peace.
    Spiritual Maturity is when you stop proving to the world, how intelligent you are.
    Spiritual Maturity is when you don’t seek approval from others.
    Spiritual Maturity is when you stop comparing with others.
    Spiritual Maturity is when you are at peace with yourself.
    Spiritual Maturity is when you are able to differentiate between “need” and “want” and are able to let go of your wants.
    & last but most meaningful!
    You gain Spiritual Maturity when you stop attaching “happiness” to material things !!
    *
    I do not know the source.

    • 7
      1

      SJ

      “I do not know the source.”

      Fine.

      The author is TEJASH SHAH
      Technopreneur, Happiness Coach, ECommerce Expert, Shopify Expert, Magento Expert, CyberLaw Certified, Certified Handwriting and Signature Analyst, Numerologist, Reiki Master & Vipassana Meditator

      https://tejash.me/

    • 3
      0

      The thought underlying the text presented above by me probably has Vedantic origins.
      What is crucial is its emphasis of tolerance.
      Literal interpretation and extrapolation from there on is not a sign of wisdom.
      What is urged in the first three statements is understanding of the other’s point of view— not necessarily agreement or approval.
      A spirit of tolerance and understanding I guess is far more Christian than any doctrinaire declaration in the name of Christianity.

      • 5
        0

        Dear SJ.
        I fully agree to tolerance if it is “No violence” or use of extreme intensity words to express a point of view.
        …..Literal interpretation and extrapolation from there on is not a sign of wisdom…….
        When something is stated, one has to understand the statement as stated, unless in sarcasm or jest or satire. Thereafter, if others “interpret” it in different ways, the original statement loses direct consequence and ends with others views. Extrapolation means “assuming that existing trends will continue” and how that (usually mathematical) word fits here is unclear.
        …..What is urged in the first three statements is understanding of the other’s point of view— not necessarily agreement or approval…..
        Understanding is fine but where does one go after that if “agreed or not” and “approved or not” about “the issue”. Should not one put forward ones views OR just agree with the others and say I understand your view – Lets forget.
        What should be the follow up after understanding contrary viewpoint. Just hold your own counsel.

        • 0
          0

          MV
          By attempting to appreciate another’s point of view, one has the benefit of recognizing a different perspective and thus gain an opportunity to review one’s own position.
          Even where one does not change one’s stand in any way, it enables one to be sensitive to the way others look at problems, and thus express one’s views in ways that others will appreciate.
          How one deals with dissent is a matter of one’s emotional make-up.
          *
          “Should not one put forward ones views OR just agree with the others and say I understand your view – Lets forget.”
          One need not even say “I understand” if effort was taken to understand.
          One who is truly convinced of possession of the ‘truth’, will not thrust one’s ‘truth’ on others, since truth is not altered by argument.
          It is a win-win situation if common ground is found to sustain sensible dialogue.
          Otherwise politely agree to disagree. Nothing gained, nothing lost.
          Where does arrogant denunciation take one?
          *
          Sharing of opinions is not an “open and shut” business, except to ones with a blinkered view of the world.
          Ones who have their minds already made up tend to see only evidence in support of their views. Still, opening up a little can help to gain fresh insights.
          *
          My considered view is that one learns and educates far far better with a tolerant approach.

          • 1
            0

            Dear SJ.
            Now you are elaborating your position in different ways. However all this started with my reference to:
            c) Everyone is right.
            And your comments on that.
            So in c), where does truth come in, if everyone is right.
            I fully endorse “since truth is not altered by argument” in a general way, but what I said and suggested was DISCUSSION in a dignified way to arrive there.
            NOT by Argument which word you refer to and never used by me. I only mentioned not accepting some views but one’s right to express one’s view politely. BTW “truth” is again one’s own perspective, or even perception, as seen by one and not absolute. Even you mention “one’s ‘truth’. If it was absolute, then like the Law, one can solve any discussion by quoting it. There would not have been this strife around us.
            …..“will not thrust one’s ‘truth’ on others” – and I hope you will not say I suggested that. Your statement only. Not mine. Never advocated it.
            “Where does arrogant denunciation take one?” Who suggested this. Not me. I was always for polite discussion – I said without hatred and rancour, never arrogant denunciation.
            …”My considered view is that one learns and educates far far better with a tolerant approach.”….
            And even the ranks of Tuscany
            Could scare forebear to cheer.

            • 1
              0

              Here is my earlier comment:
              Dear SJ.
              I fully agree that one should always listen to another’s point of view and understand, but refuting any area of that is one’s right. And this to be done in good faith, forthrightly and in a civilised way and that is certainly not “Childishly belittling other points of view”.
              That is Discussion and NOT ARGUMENT.
              I say that again.

              • 0
                1

                My comments derived from the outright rejection of item 3 by the author.
                I noted that it was wrong to interpret it literally and extrapolate it wildly.
                *
                Take for example:
                “And c) Spiritual Maturity is when you understand everyone is right in their own perspective. So stealing pastors are right. Murdering Generals and Ministers are right in their own perspective and should be left alone.
                That is not Christian theology.”
                Do you not find the arguments to be childishly polemical?– that was rebuttal of a plea for open mindedness.
                *
                Discussions can be acrimonious and arguments friendly.
                With willingness to view things from another’s perspective any exchange can be constructive.

                • 1
                  0

                  Oh. It was rejection of c) by the AUTHOR.
                  It was mine too. Hence my defence of my rejection of it too.
                  The authors comment on c) was not polemic = a strong verbal or written attack on someone or something. It was what was straightforwardly implied by c) and is not Christian Theology. In fact it is irrational.
                  Usually an argument is an exchange of diverging or opposite views, typically a heated or angry one.
                  Discussion is the action or process of talking about something in order to reach a decision or to exchange ideas.
                  Hence it is more usual for …Discussions can be friendly and arguments to be acrimonious.
                  However I agree fully with your last sentence.

  • 2
    9

    Which is worse, corruption or supporting terrorists?

    • 6
      3

      Dear EE,
      A corrupt government that runs terror operations is the worst!

      The burden of responsibility for any situation that arises from state-run terrorism falls heavily on the state while the moral responsibility falls on the masses that knowingly vote to elect such a government to serve their agenda.

    • 5
      3

      Eagle Blind Eye

      Neither
      Its people like you who exchange services with terrorists in their own interest, cheat people by being the winner in competitive racism.

    • 7
      1

      EE
      What will be your choice if terror, as the last resort, is directed against a corrupt regime?

      • 2
        1

        Dear SJ… Well put! That’s not only a profound question but of utmost relevance to the ethnic strife in SL!

      • 1
        1

        SJ
        “What will be your choice if terror, as the last resort, is directed against a corrupt regime?”
        .
        Once I attended a lecture by Luxman Kadirgamar.
        He very lucidly, very empathetically rationalised and explained that there is no reason on this earth , whatever the grievance, injustice, be it save a homeland or gain a homeland than can justify targetted , deliberate maiming and killing of innocent third party civilians.
        That day I walked out feeling a small man.

        Soma

        • 1
          0

          Soma,
          .
          Why does your talk always come back to talking about the State? this article is about the Protestant Churches. You benefitted from the education that you received at STPS, Kollupitiya, so you could contribute something on this topic, but you go off at a tangent.
          .
          On the other hand, how is it that you haven’t said anything here, about Avant-Garde, despite having worked there for a long time?

          • 0
            6

            Sinhala_man
            .
            Identify theft is bad enough, exposing stolen information on public domain is far worse while affixing wrong identities to individuals (damaging TWO parties) is the lowliest thing to do.
            .
            S_M, ‘Soma’ is known to be character on CT engaged in exposing the hypocrisy of separatists, fundamentalists and anti Sinhala Buddhists.
            If an innocent man somewhere who probably hasn’t seen the colour of Colombo Telegraph gets beaten up or fired by his employer would you bear the responsibility?
            PLEASE STOP PLAYING THIS DANGEROUS GAME.

            Soma

            • 1
              0

              Dear soma,
              .
              I saw this many hours ago, and I thought that I should check with our mutual friend – who is appalled at how far I’ve gone in denouncing you. However, he acknowledged that the identity is correct.
              .
              You ought to have noticed that I have gone out of my way to tell those who imagine that “Eagle Eye” is either HLD Mahindapala or Chandare Dharmawardena that they are wrong. Why does EE make no fuss about it? Because he’s happy with those red-herrings.
              .
              My problem with you is this. I genuinely want to live “as brothers” (that’s a bit exaggerated!) with members of the minority communities. I’ve always been against separatism, but will not take up cudgels against those who merely advocate separatism, almost as a despairing slogan. I try to persuade them to drop the slogans. I’m utterly consistent in this.
              .
              You, on the other hand, are playing games; teasing the minorities, especially the Tamils. As for Avant-Garde, I’ve never been told that you were personally involved in doing anything evil. But that was an affair that stank. Why not expose the corruption?

        • 4
          0

          Mandela was a ‘terrorist’ who was more trustworthy when a terrorist than when the pacifist who made a deal with the White racists and imperialists.
          Bagat Singh was a terrorist. But he inspired the Indian masses far more than MK Gandhi.
          The list is pretty long of former terrorists who are still celebrated as national heroes.
          *
          The Sri Lankan state itself is guilty of killing innocents. But that is no defence of militants (JVP and LTTE) doing the same.
          One takes an unprejudiced overview of matters before labelling people as good or bad guys and as terrorists or patriots.
          *
          Kindly read something on revolutionary violence by the likes of Ho Chi Minh, Fidel Castro, Mao Zedong and Amilcar Cabral.

          • 1
            0

            SJ
            Whether those characters were terrorists or not, who labled them or who exonerated them I do not know.
            Check them against the following definition to find out for yourself:
            Terrorism is
            Killing, maiming or otherwise harming third party innocent men, women and children as a deliberate, concious strategy in furthering a political or a military objective.

            Soma

            • 1
              0

              S
              There is a famous quote by Fidel Castro:
              HISTORY WILL LIBERATE ME (Spanish:”La historia me absolverá”) is the title of a two-hour speech made by Fidel Castro on 16 October 1953. Castro made the speech in his own defense in court against the charges brought against him after he led an attack on the Moncada Barracks in Cuba.
              *
              It is History that absolved each of them.
              *
              I do not defend willfully harming innocents on any pretext; and am sure that you will not defend willful harm inflicted on innocents by some members the armed forces in the name of saving them from terrorism.

        • 1
          0

          Dear soma,
          .
          This, about Kadirgamar, sounds sincere. I hope it is.
          .
          No, none of us wants the innocent to be harmed. Let me stop there, instead of giving it a twist.

    • 4
      0

      Evil, Didn’t your mother teach you ???? Which is worse ???? You tell us, which is better ????? STUPID

      • 0
        0

        CT
        Abuse is getting boring.
        I think that it is time that you permitted raw filth on these pages.

  • 6
    4

    Thank you Prof: Ratnajeevan.

    I am praying for Jesus Christ along with SJ.

  • 6
    2

    Eagle Eye,

    The worst thing is supporting war criminals!

  • 7
    3

    EE
    Do you know that the mother of all TERRORISM is the one by the STATE[GoSL/Ceylon] since our independence from the British Empire. Without it, our country would have been better than Singapore. People like you have cost the country a lot …. lost of lives; more disable citizens; more psychologically affected citizen; more poverty; decrepit transport system; ecocide; polluted air/environment;unwieldy defence budget.
    Are you all clever people or the real modayas with thick skulls.

  • 0
    5

    “It is about punishing those who killed people extra-judicially on the beaches of Mullivaikal in cold blood. It is about taking to justice our Generals who have killed Tamils and been rewarded with big office.”

    Okay, if you want to investigate the Generals and Mahinda, even Gothabaya, go for it. Take them to the Hague if necessary. However, there is one condition. In the same courtroom, you must have a trial for the members of the Tamil diaspora who financed the LTTE for 30 odd years. Every donation from drug trafficking, human trafficking, extortion, etc. must be laid bare. Let the courtroom decide whether this Diaspora or the Generals prevented 30,000 Tamils from surrendering.

  • 5
    0

    Evil why are you in bed with Pillayan and Karuna ??? Is it because they have both. Be honest did you complete school ??? By the way Evil, Rajapksas too often ask the same question. Did you learn from them. Too bad drop out getting advise from another.

  • 4
    0

    Hi, EVIL forgot to add this to my last comment. “Let us all pray” for you.

  • 1
    0

    I read Professor Hoole’s article three days ago, but didn’t respond to it, because so many different things are said in it, and my perspectives may be slightly different.
    .
    However, may I state this unambiguously? Everything here has been honestly written, and Jeevan is not the man to ever deny a stance he has taken.
    .
    To me, some of the issues highlighted here are much more serious than others. I intend to deal with those. I tend to agree with “Agnos” and “eeakdavi” that for us the financial and administrative irregularities matter much more than any of the wording in the liturgy. However, they would matter to Jeevan who is a totally committed Christian. He has every right to voice his opinions on these matters.
    .
    What prevents our making progress is the trolling by so many. Please don’t make it so easy for the central issues to be buried underneath all those comments on ethnicity and terrorism.

    • 1
      0

      PART A
      .
      I have met Bishop Dushantha Rodrigo a few times and found him a decent man who respects other human beings, and works hard himself.
      This is not something that I say only now. I have said it here:
      .
      https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/challenging-three-cheating-thomian-pharisees-and-not-doing-it-from-behind/
      .
      That link will take you to a series of articles which demonstrate that most of the Anglican clergy whom we now have just cannot be respected. They cheat. I have, on all occasions found Dushantha Rodrigo a kinder, more decent man. When a Bishop was being elected, I said as much.
      .
      https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/my-role-as-archbishop-of-canterbury-appointing-bishop-of-colombo/
      .
      The trolls were at work again, with patience you can see for yourself.
      .
      We, Sri Lankans, take clergy, and the teachings of religion far too seriously. They are there to serve us, but they place themselves on a pedestal and expect homage from us. They will not get it from me. I will respect them as much as I respect many other humans; no more. Some of these people deserve no respect whatever, and I wish readers would express themselves on those issues without saying that they are personally unaware of what happens.

      • 2
        1

        Priest only knows there is no God. Especially our Buddhist Priests know that only racism, violence, sex crimes and over eating will take them to heaven. Religion is like politics and multinational companies comprising of rouges and rascals who are therr to exploit the vulnerable fools. Lanka already fallen into this trap by accomodating and tolerating the illiterate Buddhist monks most of whom are mostly thugs and rouges. Now they have become an uncontrolable menace. Nandasena played into his hands too much and in a bid mess. No government can run this country now until they get rid of the buddhsit monks. Sir john said that he wish to apply hot tar on these morons. Only way out for Dukka deepa is that.

    • 1
      0

      I have, today, been posting a great many comments at the very bottom of this page, and getting carried over to Page 2.
      .
      I was at first reluctant to comment, because Professor Hoole is so firm in his Christian faith, whilst I, knowing sometimes even more than most Christian priests about Christianity, am pathetically uncertain.
      .
      However, it’s best to be sincere. And I have written mainly as a teacher.

  • 1
    0

    Dear Black Lankan,
    .
    I’m sure that you mean what you say, and that there is truth in it. My problem with your statement is that it implies that the Christian clergy are better. They are not.
    .
    I’ve focussed on the running of the four S. Thomas’ schools. All of them have non-Christians as well; the two Uva schools have very few (let’s say under 10%) Christians. I’ll be happy to be challenged with figures and proved wrong. My problem is that nobody cares to think. The schools have a certain prestige attached to them. For many in the school community – alumni, present students, parents – that status means all.
    .
    They quite simply approve of terrorising the teachers. I tried to discuss with one Old Boy-parent of the Bandarawela school. It is impossible. He told me that the teachers ought not to be allowed to select a Representative to be on the Board of Governors of the school because the teachers are of low calibre.
    .
    Panini Edirisinhe (NIC 483111 444 V) aka “Sinhala_Man”

  • 1
    0

    PART TWO
    .
    I know that the articles that I have written (to which I have given links) make tedious reading, if the comments also are going to be looked at. However, it will be a worthwhile learning exercise for you. Once you’ve digested the fact that what I have said has not been countered in any way, you will know, once and for all time, that the majority of the Christian clergy are no better than the majority of monks.
    .
    To me, it sounds as though you are a Buddhist. I was brought up a Christian, and I know the religion very well. I respect many aspects of it. However, I don’t believe “the magic parts” in it any more. This was the reason for my not responding to this Jeevan Hoole article immediately. I think that he takes every word in the creeds (there’s a long one and a short one!) seriously. I can recite the creeds, and sometimes do, just to see if I can remember them! But I make it clear to all who matter that I’m really agnostic about it all.

  • 1
    0

    PART THREE
    .
    This puts me in a vulnerable position, but I stick to that stand, while trying not to hurt the sensibilities of the believers. In response to the article by Justin Welby, the Archbishop of Canterbury, I have tried to be honest in that respect, and I have told him where I stand with regard to faith. However, there was much that I could have done to improve the academic work in the schools. Not any more; I’m too old.
    .
    I now only want the Board of Governors Members to be properly selected. There are fifteen. The Bishop, ex-officio Chairman. Nine others are appointed by him – certain guidelines being given for that, but to say that he appoints them is no distortion of facts.
    .
    Five are elected for a period of four years. Yes, that is the word that is used – “elected”. Three from the Mt Lavinia school. All of them are properly elected. One to represent the staff. All the staff vote. Two are elected by the OBA. There usually is a contest. Then I also vote, and it is meticulously and fairly done.

  • 1
    0

    PART FOUR
    .
    The three branch schools, Kollupitiya, Gurutalawa and Bandarawela, are given only two members in toto. That ought to change. How? Must be discussed so that there is a solution “for the next period.” Never happens. Who is elected doesn’t matter, but given that nobody bothers even with the regulations, I’ve been putting myself forward, until such time as I die. Let’s get this clear; I’m not exactly a popular guy, and it won’t be difficult to defeat me, provided there is some guy of standing and credibility coming forward. Never happens.
    .
    I’m hoping that a few “ordinary readers” will come down here and take a look. In any case, the literate clergy (very few as Jeevan says) will read this. the question is, will they do anything more than read, and then pray?
    .
    Panini Edirisinhe (NIC 483111 444 V) aka “Sinhala_Man”

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    PART FIVE
    .
    Let me here transparently explain how some people have been able to manipulate themselves onto the Board of Governors. We have to accept these as things that often happen, and I have never tried to counter them. The well-known problems with “democracy”.
    .
    But disgraceful cheating? Is Bishop Dushantha going to accept that? He knows these facts at first hand. He played a passive role, and he and I have discussed this one to one. This is one of those things that he must be praying about, but that just will not do.
    .
    Let’s be clear about this. When he was Headmaster of STPS, Kollupitiya, he was a priest who had taken a vow of obedience to his Bishop – the evil and corrupt Dhiloraj Canagasabey. He and Rajan Asirwatham were privy to Canagasabey’s plan to make sure that no independent voice (such as mine!) should turn up from the Uva Schools.
    .
    I shall describe fully the process of cheating. To make very sure that you have no doubts about possible distortion by me, please peruse the Rules of the Board of Governors as it appears on the Kollupitiya website:
    .
    http://www.prepobu.lk/images/uploaded/STPS/rules%20of%20the%20stc%20board%20of%20governors.pdf
    .

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    PART SIX
    .
    Those rules may be too long for the average reader, and the language is archaic.
    .
    1. Constitution of the Board
    .
    The Board shall consist of fifteen (15) members, that is to say . . . , etc
    .
    Of the 26 Rules, only these first five need concern us. Some bits which confuse have been omitted by me. The most fastidious may compare with what they view on the Kollupitiya website in PART FIVE.
    .
    1.1 Appoints the Bishop as Ex Officio Chairman
    .
    1.2 Appoints a representative of the “United Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in Foreign Parts”
    .
    Do you see what I mean by saying it is hopelessly outdated? Our Colonial Heritage. Please remember that Jesus of Nazareth, son of Mary (definitely!) and Joseph (common sense) was not British!
    .
    1.3 Two representatives of the S.Thomas’ College Old Boys’ Association,
    Mt.Lavinia, elected from among its members.
    .

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