Category Archives: religiosity

A Corpse That has Healed and Linked Japanese and Aussies

Ian  McPhedran, in The Australian, 23 April 2018, where the title reads “Anzac Day: for Jack Hart, battle within was more ferocious than hand-to-hand combat in war”

Jack Hart went to war — twice. The first time, he survived critical injuries deep in the jungle. The second time, it was the psychological injuries that nearly did him in, says his former wife, Jean.

Izumi and Bill Hart with a copy of a monograph about Jack Hart written by Bill’s mother, Jean, and the signed World War II flag returned to a Japanese peace museum.
Izumi and Bill Hart with a copy of a monograph about Jack Hart written by Bill’s mother, Jean, and the signed World War II flag returned to a Japanese peace museum.

John Edward Hart was born in Sydney in 1923, enlisted in 1941 and was posted to Rabaul on the island of New Britain as an anti-aircraft gunner attached to the 1400-strong Lark Force in August 1941. Five months later, the Japanese captured Rabaul. Hart was among a small number of Diggers who escaped. Most of Lark Force were either killed in the battle, captured and executed, or died later when an American submarine sank the Japanese prison ship Montevideo Maru. Continue reading

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The Roots of Kandyan Dancing

DBT Kappagoda, in Daily News, 4 April 2018, where the title reads thus How Kandyan dancing began”

Kandyan dancing is popularly known as Udarata Natum derived its name from the traditional dance forms peculiar to the central region of Sri Lanka. The origin of Kandyan dancing can be traced back to the time of the Nayakkar rulers who ascended the throne of the Kandyan Kingdom 300 years ago.

In Kandyan dancing Vannam forms as a special  feature. In Tamil and Telegu Vannam means a description. When the dancer performs he recites the Vannama and according to the description when he has recited and begins to dance displaying a Tandava style of dancing. The dancing is done in a rigorous way while describing the movement of the cobra (Naiyandi), elephant (Gajaga), peacock (Monera), eagle (Ukussa) showing the onlookers a description of the animal. In the course of the recitation, adoration to the Buddha and the great qualities he had possessed is highlighted.

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In Appreciation of My Talented Sister, Audrey

Michael Roberts, courtesy of the Sunday Times, 1 April 2018, where the title is Snapshots of a life lived to the full”

My sister Audrey Roberts passed away in Oxford in February, a little before her 84th birthday. A divorcee, bearing the name of her second husband as Audrey Maxwell, she had no issue, but can claim to have lived a full life marked by remarkable energy, wide-ranging friendships and a camaraderie that has etched her memory in many minds.

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The Recent Sinhala-Muslim Violence in Lanka: A Plea for Tolerance

Asoka Bandarage, in Asia Times, 30 March 2018, where the title runs “Avoiding ‘religious’ violence in Sri Lanka”

On the night of February 22, four drunken Muslim youths traveling on a three-wheeler in Sri Lanka’s Kandy district beat up a Sinhala Buddhist truck driver because he had not allowed them to overtake his truck. The police arrested the assailants but released them on bail.

Although intelligence officers had warned that the incident could be used to instigate ethnic tensions in the area, the police did not take immediate action. After the truck driver died and his body was being taten from the hospital on the night of March 2, feeling betrayed by state authorities, villagers burned tires in protest.

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Alan Strathern on The Vijaya Story as A Variant of the Romulus Tale … and Stranger Kings

Alan Strathern of Brasenose College, Oxford, with emphasis in colour being an imposition by The Editor Thuppahi

ABSTRACT: The story of Vijaya, has long been central to the Sinhalese idea of themselves as a distinct ethnic group of Aryan origin with ancient roots in the island of Lanka. The ‘national’ chronicle of the Sinhalese, the Mahāvaṃsa (circa fifth century ce) presents Vijaya, an exiled prince from India descended from a lion, as the founder hero of Sinhala civilisation. In a companion article to this, I argued that the narrative of Vijaya and other founder-heroes in the Mahāvaṃsa revolves around the theme of transgression, and that this puzzling fact can only be explained by a consideration of the symbolic logic of the ‘stranger-king’ in origin stories and kingship rituals worldwide.

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Ranawaka and the Chauvinist Thinking sparking Anti-Minority Action …. thereby promoting Islamist Jihadism

Dayan Jayatilleka, in The Island, 8 March 2018, where the title reads “The instrumentalization of IslamophobiaProvoking Islamist terrorism: Who benefits?”

The recent spate of attacks on Muslims is the latest manifestation of Islamophobia in Sri Lanka. Such violence cannot but have the effect of radicalizing Muslim youth and marginalizing Muslim moderates. We have come one step closer to the emergence of Islamist terrorism in Sri Lanka.

 Pic from afternoonvoice

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Facets of the Islamic Faith are Integral to Jihadism

Denis MacEoin, courtesy of The Gatestone Institute, 21 February 2018, where the title is “Does Jihad Really Have “Nothing to do with Islam”?

  • “National Security officials are prohibited from developing a factual understanding of Islamic threat doctrines, preferring instead to depend upon 5th column Muslim Brotherhood cultural advisors.” — Richard Higgins, NSC official.
  • At the heart of the problem lies the fantasy that Islam must be very similar to other religions, particularly Judaism and Christianity, out of which it was, in fact derived.
  • The use of force, mainly through jihad, is a basic doctrine in the Qur’an, the Prophetic sayings (ahadith), and in all manuals of Islamic law. It is on these sources that fighters from Islamic State, al-Qa’ida, al-Shabaab, and hundreds of other groupings base their preaching and their actions. To say that such people have “nothing to do with Islam” could not be more wrong.

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