Buddhist fears are yet to be allayed ….but getting closer – Response to Hameed Abdul Karim
Posted on January 31st, 2013

Shenali Waduge

It is welcome to see the toning down of Mr. Karim’s expressions of opinion and extending friendly gestures, therefore let me reciprocate whilst also appreciating the Daily News editor who has accommodated both our views allowing readers to see both sides of the story. The lovely sketches courtesy of the editorial staff carry a deeper meaning for all of us. In a democratic society this is certainly the best way to move forward.

Let us approach the discussion on the presumption that there is a problem. All problems offer solutions so long as honest and genuine attempts are made to ensure that there is no repetition to what caused the present unrest. In most cases, conflict arises from the ignorance that certain practices seemingly natural to some may be the cause of concern for others. When knowingly or unknowingly people start disregarding others sensitivities and trespassing on others space and territory which were traditionally considered as sacred and belonging to the older culture, issues begin to rise.

This appears to be the root issue of the current unrest.

Before, I proceed any further, I would like to invoke the message in the karaniya metta sutra where the Buddha calls on humanity to be compassionate to all living beings in a manner similar to a mother showing love and kindness to her only child.

This is one of the greatest declarations made in the history of human kind.

Let us now take a step back and look at it from a “what if” scenario.

  • What if Muslims who had been eating halal as they have for a good length of time (with no objections from any community) did not introduce the need to issue halal certificates and for companies to obtain and display certificates – would people be protesting against halal? The current reaction is as a result of people opposing to see halal labels in everything they purchase. If the certificate is today considered a “right” perhaps the best compromise is to have separate halal counters like the kosher products for Jews. It does not need to be a compulsory certificate for all food, cosmetics and pharmaceuticals for the entire nation. Two of the six top hotels in close proximity to each other in Colombo cater exclusively to Muslim requirements “”…” now no non-Muslim will ever enjoy such freedom in a Muslim state. The halal certificate was introduced as a response to Jewish Kosher products and with 1.8billion halal consumers the halal business is worth more than $60billion annually. Moreover without direct State involvement it is tax-free and profits go directly to the companies issuing the certificate. (http://www.worldhalalcouncil.com/about-us)
  • What if Muslims had not been illegally putting up mosques or encroaching on lands (ex: in Ampara district the 2000 year old Muhudumaha Vihara where 200 acres had been gifted by the Sinhalese Kings, or the Kurugala incident which has a history dating back to the 2nd century BC which the Muslims have taken over and four other places south of Kirinda). Some Muslims contributors have said that putting up mosques has become a competition and some are not even used. In the current context sense must prevail in view of the rising opposition against more mosques – a solution to this is a moratorium to put up future mosques because we do not want to have a situation similar to France, Germany and the UK.  If Mr. Kareem argues against this, can he please name even 5 temples/kovils/Churches newly put up in a Muslim country.
  • Dambulla and Anuradhapura comprise historically sacred land areas. The supposed “mosque” in Anuradhapura was only an aluminum (“ƒ”¹…”takarang’) shed round a tree with a green cloth at the bottom of the tree. The scene was vividly shown on TV and it can be still seen on YouTube. The shed had been hastily put up without any prior approval from the authorities. It was discovered when the area was being cleared for a new Buddhist Dagoba i.e. Jayamaha Seya, in the vicinity. It was the public that opposed the unlawful constructions in sacred areas gifted by Buddhist kings to the Buddha Sasana, it was the Buddhist public who had got agitated because they saw Muslims as attempting to enter areas that were earmarked as sacred Buddhist areas by tradition and customary law. Thus the protests were due to the respect for traditional heritage and territory being violated. When Government officials and police arrived there was hardly anyone at the site to speak in defense or provide any documents showing legal title to this “ƒ”¹…”shed’. The Government Official responsible had no hesitation in giving the order to the Police to demolish this unlawful and unauthorized construction. The demolition was a valid and legitimate exercise carried out by the State.  
  • What if Muslims had not been abusing the use of the loudspeakers? The loudspeakers are a recent innovation and came into use perhaps in the last 30 years at Muslim mosques. The loudspeakers by their very nature are meant to be used only on special occasions and certainly not on a daily basis five times a day every day. The right to freedom of worship is not an absolute right. It is only a qualified right. Nobody has a right to cause harm to another (human or animal) under the guise of exercising freedom of worship. One’s freedom ends when pain begins. The right to silence is deeply entrenched in any civilized society. It is one of the most fundamental of human rights. It is associated with the right to be left alone and right to sleep undisturbed. These basic rights are infringed with the use of the loudspeaker. The original complaint on loudspeakers arose following rifts between Muslims in Weligama that led to the matter coming before the Supreme Court as a FR. Be that as it may, the majority of non-Muslims who do not believe in a God do not welcome being forced to listen to calls to prayer to God through loudspeakers at different times of the day. Just as Muslims in majority Muslim countries would not like being forced to listen to Buddhist pirith over loud speakers the same must apply in reverse as well.

The Supreme Court interim order issued in 2007 required the consent of the neighbourhood to be obtained before Police gives permission for use of the loudspeaker and more importantly if a loudspeaker were to be used at a mosque, it had to be directed inwards and not outwards. However, the Supreme Court orders are not being honored. Buddhism is a philosophy of silence and reflection; it is not a religion of loudspeakers. We must all try not to compete to make the biggest noise using loudspeakers in the name of religion because it is a public nuisance to everyone. Countries like Australia and Singapore have banned the use of loudspeakers. Use of a loudspeaker is not a fundamental right””…” reducing the decibel in not sufficient a solution either.

Supreme Court Interim Order to Control Noise Pollution.

http://www.island.lk/2007/11/10/news9.html. It is not only in Sri Lanka that the issue of loudspeaker has arisen. What excuse can Mr. Kareem give for building a mosque in Buddha Gaya close to the Maha Bodhi temple recently and using loudspeakers where the sound emanating from the mosque affects the proceedings of the temple and Buddhists in prayer? “”…” Is this not directly targeting the Buddhist sensitivity?


  • What if there was no requirement to pave way for Sharia courts, laws, banking etc? Muslim weddings, divorce and other Muslim-only customs has been practiced without objections from others. The people do not want to face a situation like in Malaysia where rulings of Sharia courts can overrule that of civil courts. Whatever excuses are given, there is no requirement to have parallel courts in Sri Lanka. Customs can continue as has happened. If Sharia Law champions for absolute freedom of conscience and freedom of religion why can’t people put up a temple, kovil of church in Saudi Arabia and other majority Muslim nations? Why does Malaysia have an Article in its Constitution clearly saying that Sharia Law can overrule rulings of civil courts? The truth is that whilst allowing the other religions of the book that existed to prevail all Muslim majority nations have stringent laws prohibiting new construction or expansions? If Sharia is the law that all Muslims must follow when questions are raised on its application the answer that is given is not to denounce the law but the country that applies it “”…” as Mr. Kareem has done in the case of Saudi Arabia?

Let’s recap to 1915.

The riots resulted because coastal Moor settlers in Gampola started building mosques along the existing perahera route, they had bribed the police to stop drumming when the perahera was passing the mosques. The riots were a reaction to several acts that Muslims (newly settled Coastal Moors) had committed violating hitherto sustained mutual understanding between the Muslims and Buddhists, and unwritten laws of respect and tolerance. The riots were primarily as a result of the newly settled Coastal Moors not being aware of the Buddhist ethos of the land which eventually contributed to the civil unrest that ensued.

Fast forward to present “”…” similar actions over a period of time have created the reactions. The external force was the British in 1915 but today we cannot overrule multitude of external forces attempting to create disharmony.

There is a whole chain of actions that Mr. Kareem has to agree is what has led to the reactions. Whether the reactions should not have been violent is secondary to the fact that these incidents are as a result of violations that have taken place. The factuality of these violations must take precedence in any discussion and solution and not be sidelined by only concentrating on the reactionary elements. Both are certainly wrong and should not be permitted.

The response nevertheless has been to quickly use the biased media in Sri Lanka to project that there is a deliberate racist and discriminatory attack on Muslims in Sri Lanka.  These channels neglect to investigate background issues thoroughly to explain why the reactions occurred because their objective is to use any and every instance to demonize the Government and the Sinhalese Buddhists.

Now we come to the question of non-violence. Certainly no religion would ever advocate violence and Mr. Kareem will agree that all religions except for Buddhism and Hinduism have a history of invading nations using religion. No conquests of new territory have taken place because of Buddhism/Hinduism or in the name of Buddhism/Hinduism. 

Violence on Buddhist heritage has been sequential. It is certainly an organized event. Who is behind this is as important as the fact that the objective was to wipe out all traces of Buddhism. With that fait accompli it offers little solace in apologies or sympathies post-destruction. It makes little difference too whether the violence was done by Christians, Hindus or even Muslims because the objective of annihilating history was achieved.

We next come to equality and Mr. Kareem’s example of Vesak and Poson held at the Sri Lanka embassy gently extinguishes the reality. If the Sri Lankan Embassy was allowed to display wesak pandols outside the complex or even outside the residences of staff members or hold a mini perahera for the 500,000 Sri Lankans in Saudi Arabia then it would be a different story. It is not only the public worship of a non “”…” Islamic religion that is forbidden but that Buddhists are not permitted even to carry a Buddhist book, statue or any Buddhist symbol e.g. Wesak Card, when entering these countries. Maldives which was a virtually a colony of the Sinhalese in the distant past with Buddhism being the major religion has now erased Buddhism even from their Museums and confiscate any Buddhist item taken by a Sri Lankan at their airports. The GOSL cannot allow our countrymen to be harassed in such manner and the External Affairs Ministry through its diplomatic channels must take up this matter with the Maldivian Government without delay.

The topic of dress code was brought up to show our surprise at why ladies are adapting to tribal dress codes in this modern era and this change is visible across the world though none of the Borah ladies have changed their attire. Through this attire we feel that Muslims are attempting to segregate themselves on the footing of a separate identity. It is these new conducts, attitudes and practices that are seen as the seed of a future problem “”…” because generally speaking people respond to others in the manner they conduct themselves. We have all heard of the saying “”…” “When in Rome do as the Romans do”.

Mr. Kareem concludes that the weblinks sent are anti-Islam or run by Zionists therefore let me know if the Huffington Post, the IBTimes and the Center for Democracy and Human Rights also falls into this category or if there is any website that gives a version that Muslims are ready accept or suffice it for us to conclude that the world is totally at fault for projecting Islam as a religion of violence.




And maybe this video too is another conspiracy  http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2263905/Muslim-patrol-Hooded-vigilantes-walking-streets-London-telling-women-cover-taking-alcohol-hands-revellers-behave-Islamic-way.html

Mr. Kareem is also requested to provide the reference in the Mahavamsa that says that Muslims had been trading in the country from Anuradhapura times. As far as I know, there was no Muslim/Islam in Anuradhapura or Polonnaruwa. It was only in 1283AD, that a Muslim delegation had been given approval by King Bhuwanakabahu I of Yapahuwa to go to Egypt. It was during this period that the Muslims from Coromandel coast of South India invaded Sri Lanka. These defeated soldiers were however allowed to remain in Sri Lanka and went on to settle north west of Sri Lanka. Even Ibn Batuta when he arrived in 1344 was not given an audience before the King.  Therefore, Mr. Kareem’s attempt to showcase that Muslims/Islam existed during Anuradhapura reign to justify the existence of the mosque at the center of controversy does not hold water. “The Sinhala kings in Action” – http://www.dailynews.lk/2009/12/16/fea10.asp should not escape anyone’s reading to understand the chivalry and intelligence with which the Sinhala kings ruled Sri Lanka.  It is advised not to create or change history for political advantage.

Mr. Kareem needs to also be corrected that Buddhism does not spend for conversions.

Next we come to the “ethnic” political parties. Political parties were formed along extremist lines by both Tamils and Muslims “”…” JHU entered the scene much later again as a reactionary force. We are all the time concerned about how “nationalist” motivated these parties are. Majority of Tamil parties are seeking to either separate and putting out a plethora of vocabulary that leads to the same target.

Our next concern is how valid is the Oluvil Declaration of 2003 issued by the Sri Lanka Muslim Congress in today’s context of things. (Sunday Leader – 9th February 2003, Volume 9, Issue 30). http://www.thesundayleader.lk/archive/20030209/issues.htm

1.   Muslim autonomy ensured in any federal solution

2.   Muslims entitled to equitable share in all resources for development

3.   Muslim political leadership must unite

4.   Muslims must be represented as a separate entity at peace talks

5.   Final political settlement must have consent of Muslims

Are these not grounds for concern in view of the nature of the demands being made amidst a very large congregation? Of course these demands made unanimously were relevant to the Muslims living in the northern and eastern provinces but do we not have a right to worry as well as voice our concerns “”…” in a democratic nation no one can deny that right? No one wants to have a country facing unwanted strife and why would the Sinhalese wish to create trouble when it is they who end up facing most of the problems “”…” we did loose over 30,000 armed forces personnel.

Mr. Kareem’s arguments project a view that Islam is being abused. That violence takes place in the name of sectarian conflicts throughout the Muslim world is true. Numerous sectarian issues have taken place in Eastern Sri Lanka as well. I believe we can recall how a Muslim was not allowed to be buried some time back in the Eastern province.

Mr. Kareem needs to accept that whatever excuses given Muslims are having problems in every nation or people are having problems with Muslims “”…” either way, there is a problem. I do not think that the Buddhists in Sri Lanka are asking Muslims to be accountable for the behaviors of “Muslims” in other countries. No one is asking Muslims to defend the indefensible but to see how best they can address the concerns in Sri Lanka. Moreover, I do not think Sri Lanka has a problem with Sufis’ but only with groups that are out to forcefully dominate Muslims and non-Muslims. Wahhabism is a concern to a large number of people throughout the world including the Sinhalese Buddhists of Sri Lanka. Just as it is a concern for Muslims it is a concern for the rest of the world including Buddhists too. Mr. Kareem may like to respond to this link

–  http://www.islamicpluralism.org/2071/the-wahhabi-invasion-of-sri-lanka

Sri Lanka is one of few countries where Buddhism is revered and protected whilst some of these very Buddhist majority countries like Myanmar and Thailand are facing similar threats that Sri Lanka does not want to experience if left neglected.

No one can deny the high status given to Buddhism in Sri Lanka under the rule of 180 kings. The multicultural ploys to usurp and marginalize the status of Buddhism is nothing that can no longer be entertained by the Buddhists of this country. http://english.srilankamirror.com/2012/05/we-are-fighting-to-save-the-2300-year-old-buddhist-heritage-that-is-ours/ More importantly, for the Sinhalese Buddhists, Sri Lanka is their birthright “”…” their only heritage and place of refuge.

In short the Buddhists do not want to see Sri Lanka “softly usurped”.

The course, I take is not violent but to bring to the open issues that would offer both sides the opportunity to think inward because the voice of the Buddhists is suppressed and put into the background by a biased media. It is no exaggeration to say that Buddhists do not receive the same opportunities to air their views and opinions that media provides to non-Buddhists.

It has become media-savvy to quickly flood the electronic and print media demonizing the Buddhists as racists and extremists because the mass media is virtually owned and controlled by non-Buddhists. Since the examples are too many, an example relevant to the discussion is the Sacred Land Act, a bill introduced to Parliament in 2011 has been quickly diverted to project the view that the Act has nothing to do with protecting sacred land and so an over-active media drums this version and the Act is purposely put into the background by the negative buildup.

If media had balanced the issues as an unbiased media should even the LTTE issue could have been dealt with better. If not for the present Daily News editor, the dialogue that has prevailed would not have happened. The other daily private newspapers hardly carry anything related to Buddhist issues or give space to Buddhist opinion apart from the monthly poya supplement “”…” this too is no exaggeration.

No one can accuse the Buddhists of discrimination or disrespect of other religions. If the country had been as rigid as projected there would be no occasion to protest against the many mosques that have been established and others now been constructed in an uncontrolled and rapid manner.

If Buddhists respect the right of other religions to exist and their adherents are allowed to practice their religion unhindered, then people belonging to other religions must respect the status and place of Buddhism as non-negotiable by virtue of Article 9 of the Sri Lanka Constitution and its foremost place in the history of the country.  

The sentiments that have been expressed in these past discussions were to bring to the attention of all that communities to live in peaceful co-existence must respect the traditional space of others which is not a prescriptive right especially in times of national security. It is when infringements and encroachments take place that issues arise and open room for external forces to make the situation worse.

Thus, mutual respect of traditions, practices and most of all space will help solve all issues of present and future.

We do not have to take the road other countries have taken nor repeat the route that the LTTE took which was why I took the most sensible path of bringing these issues to light so that in the open and with issues transparent solutions can be reached with wisdom.

Having said that, it is the authorities that have failed in their role “”…” the Government, in particular the municipalities and provincial councils should have been doing their job without favor. Illegal constructions take place under the very noses of the authorities and sometimes with their explicit knowledge whilst these very people create nightmares for ordinary citizens wanting to build a simple house.

It cannot be reiterated enough that the authorities need to review the rules and guidelines and follow these to the word and the public too must be afforded opportunity whereby their concerns are heard as well without bias. No illegal construction must be allowed to prevail under any circumstances.

Since the discussion started with a “what if” scenario turning the tables around Mr. Kareem and others can ponder a situation where what if the Buddhists did not protest against any increase of mosques, did not make their views known on halal, sharia laws and other associated systems, did not object to loudspeakers, did not alert people to radicals indoctrinating youth, did not protest against home slaughter, animal sacrifice and halal methods of slaughter allowing animals to bleed to death without stunning them”¦. what if the entire country remained silent and allowed all these and more to take place since we get loans, since we get a vote of international support etc? Is this the solution that would satisfy all?

Most of the recent issues have stemmed from the absence of proper visibility and legality “”…” it is now the time to look inwards and thereafter work out remedial measures so that everyone can live as they had in peaceful co-existence without creating any disturbance to the equilibrium. We do not want to see the current trends reverse the goodwill nurtured over years.

I will quote from the leader of the Muslim Congress who made a special statement in August 2012 that “We (Muslims) have enjoyed the patronage and the benevolence of the Sinhala people from the time of Sinhala Kings. In fact, it was only a few months ago that I “¦.publicly acknowledged the pluralism as practiced by Sinhala Buddhists from the Time of King Senarath who gave refuge to the Muslims persecuted by the Portuguese invaders.” It was in 1626 that King Senerath(Kandy) to whom the Muslims appealed following their expulsion by the Portuguese, settled nearly 4000 Muslims in East Sri Lanka.

 In conclusion, it would not be correct to accept a personal dinner invitation when I was only attempting to project the side of the Buddhists that the majority of media channels do not wish to give voice to “”…” but I sincerely thank Mr. Kareem for extending the invitation.  

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.
Lord Buddha
Kalama Sutta




20 Responses to “Buddhist fears are yet to be allayed ….but getting closer – Response to Hameed Abdul Karim”

  1. purohithaa Says:

    I am sure Buddhists in Sri Lanka are thankful to you for bringing this serious issue for discussion at a time Islamic changes are silently gathering momentum within the Islamic community to turn the country into another Maldives.

    I saw the Presidents reaction after the Bodhubala protest in the news recently. Being a contentious issue he dealt it diplomatically. He seems to be dilly dallying the issue for gains as you have indicated. After all it’s only the Muslim nations who voted in favour of Sri Lanka at the last Geneva Sessions, he had to show the gratitude.

    The majority of Buddhists are lethargic, due to non-violence feature in Buddhism as we accommodate changes without reading deep into the subtle changes until it becomes a major issue. By the time its changes are felt, Buddhist have lost their Buddhist Heritage and the country!

    I hope with your correspondence, the vicious topic will be kept alive and if the authorities are wiser they have to bring in solid changes in the constitution to plug in the weakness that allows the abuse the good nature of the majority Sinhalese!

    Let’s hope the name “Rajapaksa” will revitalize the Great Ashoka by restoring losing Buddhist Heritage in Sri Lanka!

  2. Lorenzo Says:

    “After all it’s only the Muslim nations who voted in favour of Sri Lanka at the last Geneva Sessions, he had to show the gratitude.”


    Russia, China and the Phillipines are NOT Muslim. Friends of Russia and China voted for us.

    Saudi voted against us.

    Pakistan, Bangladesh and their friends are with us NOT because of Muslim, but we face the SAME enemy -India.

  3. Nanda Says:

    You are WRONG. Saudi and Qatar voted for us against US.
    Only Libya( puppet muslim extremists government who killed the US embassidor) voted against us.

  4. S de Silva Says:

    Well done Shenali for this response to Mr Karim which I waited for with much anticipation. Hope he will now consider the subject closed from HIS position and for HIS sake!! – S de Silva – London

  5. Fran Diaz Says:

    Ancient religious practices suited to ancient DESERT areas should not be transposed to Modern tropics and other regions. It seems very alien to those regions. Slaughter of animals as Sacrifices in homes seems painful & unnecessary to non-Muslims.

    Mankind is in transition. Our very bodies are changing/have changed from Ape-like forms to walking upright forms with relatively hairless bodies; teeth (no canines as such to tear meats) & digestive systems getting transformed to suit non-meat foods. Some people need some meat & fish etc. – that’s alright by us. But, no gory spectacles of animal sacrifice in hones & temples, etc., please. Those are pagan practices given up by the west over 2,000 yrs ago. In those times, Greece had a pantheon of gods & goddesses, myth & mythology, all of which are now relegated to the museums. The time has come for human evolution & Change for the better, hasn’t it ?

    Expanding further : Likewise, ancient laws of Caste (Laws of Manu) tied to religion, should be gently let go in MODERN times.

  6. Fran Diaz Says:

    Error correction : read ‘hones’ as homes’.

  7. Senevirath Says:

    The fact is muslims have NO LIMIT in any thing ? The shop called NO LIMIT is thier motto
    We must not allow them to do the HAMBAKARANAYA in Sri lanka
    They certainly will eradicate sinhalese like in other countries

  8. S de Silva Says:

    Buddhist Fears – yes there are many justifiable fears in the Long Term, not openly acknowledged by the Tamils, the Muslims or other minorities and that needs restating to understand the issue. The Sinhala Buddhists have NO OTHER place on this earth that we could call our homeland, while the Tamils and Muslims have many!! This IS the unsaid core issue, and the cause of fear. And the minorities including Mr Karim speaking for the Muslims and the TNA, if honest, have to grudgingly accept this as a fact. (Please check on what happened in Fiji to get an idea of what could happen in the future in SL if the minorities are and continue to be in an overwhelming position of power in all sectors mainly at the expense of Sinhala Buddhists). If this fear was ABSENT and for example the Tamils had NO OTER place on this Earth for a Tamil homeland other than the Jaffna peninsula, the request for a ‘homeland’ for the Tamils may be seen differently – S de Silva – London

  9. Ben Silva Says:

    i agree with Purohitha that “Buddhists are lethargic, due to non-violence feature in Buddhism “. The law of nature is survival of the fittest and natural selection. This law cannot be violated. We have already lost out in Colombo and number of other cities. Just before independence Sinjala Buddhists were third class citizens in our own country. The person who liberated us SWRD was killed by a Buddhist priest. Nalanda Buddhists were wiped out and so were Buddhists in the silk route and even in Maldives. Buddhist priests in Maldives were beheaded. Unless we we wake up, the future is bleak.
    There is no easy way out in a highly competitive world, where we have to learn fast and evolve. If we do not learn and evolve we will be lead to a cliff edge by persons such as Shelton.

  10. NAK Says:

    The Holy Koran doesn’t require to make the call to prayer with loud speakers but they use it to reach a larger area. If that’s what they want there is new technology to reach the whole country in an instant by making the call via SMS without being a nuisanse to others. But they don’t do that,if it is really the coverage area they care about, they would have switched to SMS already,but they to want the nuisanse to continue as a show of power.
    The halal can be produced seprately for those seeking halal and spare the rest from additional cost and the problem is solved. No one is against halal which has been here for long time. It is the unneccessary spread of halal that is objected to.
    The spread of mosques is done in a methodical way starting with a sunday school eventually converted to a mosque.
    It is time Sri lanka take a serious look at this and bring in some controls not to restrict the practice of religion but to restrict practices that are offensinve and a nuisanse to others.

  11. Ancient Sinhalaya Says:

    Buddhists in Sri Lanka are in grave danger already. What happened in old Afganisthan, Pakisthan, Bangladesh, Maldives, Malaysia and Indonesia happening in Sri Lanka. They outbred and outnumbered the natives within few hundred years since their arrival in those countries. Once the numbers were high Buddhists had to convert or be killed. While Sinhalese sacrificing their lives to safeguard our motherland these people quietly doubled their numbers. The army had to save them from the LTTE brutality. They quickly paid back by multiplying quietly and taking over town after and securing numerous ministerial, deputy ministerial, mayoral posts etc. etc. with the increased numbers. Now the numbers are high enough, so make the government dance to their tune all the time. Law College entrace exam is a case in point. Push Islamisation boat further buy introducing halal, ( )riya law, building another eyesore next to Sacred Sri Maha Bodiya. Our leaders are still turning a blind eye to this menace. The two main parties get together and get rid of this menace to save our motherland. Failing that, our existence will be limited to history books and www. in few years.

  12. Lorenzo Says:

    Fighting Islam terror is very dangerous. SL CANNOT do it alone. SL has to get expertise from those who SUCCESSFULLY and BRUTALY destroyed this threat.

    We have to manipulate Tamil (Indian) terrorists AGAINST Islamic terrorists. That way we can avoid war crimes.

    This was the Mosssad advice in 1984. It worked like a charm!!! Soon they were killing, chasing away each other.

    LTTE (though terrorists and idiots) had a better understanding of Islamic terrorism than SL. They did something about it. We didn’t.

    We have to create as many FLASHPOINTS between them as we can. Then grab some popcorn, sit back and watch the fun unfold.

  13. sawmeer Says:

    Response to Shenali Waduge: Allaying SINHALA BUDDHIST Fears

    Hameed Abdul Karim

    ‘Oh you who believe if a wicked person comes to you with any news ascertain the truth, lest you harm people unwittingly and afterwards become full of repentance for what you have done’ Qur’an 49:6

    The above is advice from the Qur’an. But for all intents and purposes these words could have come out of the lips of the ever content the Buddha.

    Truth is sacred and truth has no religion. Shenali Waduge must abide by this tenet if she is true to her conscience.

    Let me point out one of many of her glaring untruths. She claims that Premanath Pereralage (Thungasiri) is awaiting execution for having a Buddha statue in his room at his work place. This is an absolute fabrication that was propagated by an extremist Sinhala Buddhist group. Waduge has swallowed this falsehood hook, line and sinker whether mistakenly or not is left to speculation. A senior official at our embassy, according to Arab News dated Sunday July 8, 2012, had slammed this story as a total fabrication. What had happened was that Pereralage was involved in a dispute over a housemaid who he had said was a relative. When things got out of hand the Police arrived and took him into custody.
    Nailing canards

    If Pereralage had indeed being sentenced to death for having a Buddha statue in his room as Waduge would have us believe, can you imagine the justified protests that would have emanated from human rights groups?

    Nailing another canard spread by vested interests our embassy had said that there was no religious persecution and that no one was victimized for his or her religious leanings. Vesak and Poson are celebrated at our missions in Riyadh and Jeddah. Over 20,000 Buddhists participated at these events in 2012. Saudi Arabia is home to over 500,000 Sri Lankans of all faiths and baring a few negative stories, the Saudis have treated our people with respect and dignity.

    Saudi Arabia has its shortcomings. Every state has. But isn’t it true that they are coming in for too much stick these days? And when we hear that Saudi Arabia is terrorising the US with its petrodollars we can only treat it as joke and try to laugh it off.

    The violence against Buddhists in Bangladesh was indeed a terrible incident. And as reports of destruction of ancient sites and statues came in, being a lover of anthropology and a buff for historical sites, I could only cringe in horror. As a Muslim I was shamed like all Muslims around the world by the actions of my co-religionist in Bangladesh. And I am sure an overwhelming majority of Sinhala Buddhists might have been shamed when a mob destroyed a Muslim shrine in Anuradhapura and also when attacks on churches, mosques and kovils took place in recent times.

    But here again Waduge utters a falsehood when she claims that Buddhist monks were killed in the incident. No Buddhist monks were killed. In fact there was no loss of life at all. The Police were quick to take action and the culprits have been arrested and are in awaiting trial. The Bangladeshi government, to its credit, was quick to step in with promises to restore the damaged statues and temples. These terrible attacks were sparked off when a poor young boy’s facebook account was hacked and a derogatory picture on Islam was inserted in it without his knowledge. This clearly suggests that there was a concerted plan from some force inimical to peace and harmony among the Bangladeshi population. The fact that the attackers were from outside the area gives further credence to this suspicion.

    Happily there was no reaction to the mass expulsion and killings of Muslims in Myanmar. None of us blamed Buddhism for these attacks even though they were carried out with state patronage. Not so long ago even Buddhist monks were beaten up by Myanmar’s government forces on the streets of the capital as the world watched in shock and grief.

    Another falsehood Waduge has uttered is clearly evident in the text of her response. Let me quote. ‘When Kareem says there is “equality” the Saudi state Website (emphasis mine) says to the contrary. ‘Non-Muslim worshipers risk arrest, imprisonment, lashing, deportation, and sometimes torture (emphasis mine) in religious activities…’ Well, I checked the website she has given. And guess what? Lo and behold it turned out to be the US State Department website and not the ‘official Saudi website’ as she claims. I went further into that site and found rather disparaging remarks about Sri Lanka too! Are we to take the empire’s word about us? The empire has its own agenda and it’s about time we took note of that.

    I am no apologist for Saudi Arabia and it is true religious propagation is forbidden there as it is in Israel. In Israel or occupied Palestine, to put it in another way, the preaching of Christianity is strictly banned. And that too in the land that gave birth to its founder and his faith! I am not a Saudi citizen. I am a Sri Lankan citizen (if I can be accepted as such) and shall speak for my country. If Waduge has a grouse with regards to religious freedom in Saudi Arabia or the Maldives let her take up the issue with the authorities there and I will support her to the hilt in her efforts. Let her not blame Sri Lankan Muslims. Just as much as nobody blames Buddhism for the atrocities that Myanmar has committed against its Muslim population.

    Quite a few of the websites Waduge has quoted are hostile to Islam and Muslims. The New York Times (NYT) and UK’s Daily Mail which she quotes are owned by Jewish Zionist and if at all they say something nice about Islam or Muslims it is to throw a sop or two to ‘balance’ the ‘news’. The rest of the time they demonise Islam and the Muslims and support Israel to the hilt in its apartheid policies in Occupied Palestine.
    Extremist parties

    Sinhala chauvinism created the SLMC which in turn ‘created’ the JHU. And as the JHU loses its shine other extremists parties come into the picture. We had Udaya Gammanpila, the JHU strongman, making an outrageous and absolutely reckless statement in a weekend newspaper saying that a repeat of the 1915 Sinhala-Muslim riots is ‘imminent’. Perhaps he’s competing with other extremist parties for a place in the sun now that his party has lost its standing in the community. His statement has plunged the Muslim community in fear. The tragedy is that up until now no responsible person in the party or in the political establishment has distanced themselves from his ‘proclamation’. What a shame.

    The other day a group of another extremist party had gathered outside a clothes store at Maharagama owned by a Muslim shouting racist abuse. The abuse was so ugly that the Bodu Bala Sena was compelled to distance themselves from the protest. A media report said they had nothing to do with the new ultra nationalist group. Here we are calling for foreign investment and look at what we are doing. See where all this extremism is taking us? The Mahavamsa records that Muslims had been trading in the country from Anuradhapura times and look what the radical Buddhist parties are doing to us now.

    To his credit it must be said that at the time of his tragic death the late M.H.M. Ashraf realised his mistake and wanted to convert his creation into a national party. Rauf Hakeem should pursue his leader’s last wish.

    I said in my previous response that the Sharia law guarantees other religions. The Prophet Muhammad (peace be on him) told the Jews of Medina that they should abide by the Torah of the Prophet Moses (peace be on him). So you never saw a Muslim judge in a Jewish court and vice versa. The striking point is that he did not force them to convert to Islam. This will go a long way to dispel any doubts anybody might have about forcible conversions to Islam. The Qur’an is very clear on this matter. The verse that says ‘to you your faith and to me mine’ is clearly etched on every Muslim’s mind. So Waduge doesn’t have to worry about Muslims wanting to wipe off Buddhism from Sri Lanka. Besides, there is another verse in the Qur’an that says that if Allah willed He would have made everybody Muslim. All living beings are His creatures after all, as is the Muslim belief. So if he doesn’t want a section to be Muslim, well then that’s His business. In other words Allah is telling us to mind our own business. There is an instruction in the Qur’an to Muslims to ‘invite others to the faith with wisdom and beautiful preaching’ just as much as Buddhist preachers go round the world to preach Buddhism to non-Buddhists. A Daily News report (Monday January 31, 2000) quoting President Chandrika said the government had spent Rs.2, 200 million to foster Buddhism, that is assuming she was speaking the truth for once.
    Dress code

    Shariah law champions absolute freedom of conscience and freedom of religion. For example, the Qur’an goes so far as to oblige Muslims to fight on behalf of Jews, Christians and people of other faiths and to protect their churches, synagogues and temples from attack. (Qur’an 22:40). But please don’t confuse the tribal laws that prevail in Saudi Arabia with the Sharia. Please observe the other Muslim countries where tribalism doesn’t rule the roost.

    Waduge seems to be alarmed at the way some Muslim women dress. There is a dress code for Muslim men and women. Both are required to dress modestly and not in clothes that reveal the body, but to conceal it from prying eyes. A lot of us have adopted Western styles of dressing and we see a lot of women, young and old, dressed in tight blue jeans and skimpy t-shirts and miniskirts too. Some Muslim girls also dress in this way. The traditional Sinhala girls’ dress of redda and hetta are now worn only at avurudu kumari shows to mark Sinhala and Tamil New Year or to display our traditional values for the entertainment of tourists! If a man wears ‘full suit’ he’s categorised as ‘mod’ while a man who wears the traditional sarong and shirt is classified as backward. This is a reflection of an inferiority complex instilled in us from colonial times. I have no objections to the way women dress. Similarly I don’t see why Shenali Waduge should object to Muslim women wearing the ‘full cover’. This form of dressing is not mentioned in the Qur’an, but if they wish to dress in this way, then I think it is their business. To claim that this is an expression of extremism is going beyond the realms of reason. I know some of these women and I can tell you they mean no harm. And it’s not only the ‘wahabis’ or ‘salafis’ who wear ‘full cover’. Some of those not within that bracket dress the same way.

    There was a time when there were curtains in car windows to cover Muslim girls and as time passed this fad vanished just like that. Maybe Shenali Waduge is too young to remember ‘those days’. But the point I wish to make is that we shouldn’t take these matters to heart and make an issue out of it. What I see in this is that there is an attempt to coerce women to adopt the Western mode of dressing and to give up our traditional way of dressing. According to the Qur’an Muslim women are required to cover their hair, because the hair is an adornment that catches the eye. The numerous advertisements for products targeting women to ‘buy’ this or that shampoo to beautify their hair should explain the reason why Muslim women are required to cover their hair. In those days, they used to cover their hair with the edge of the saree, but now they find the hijab more convenient. I know the excess visibility of the Muslim women dressed in hijab or ‘full cover’ might cause some concern among a few Sinhala Buddhists like Waduge, but really there is nothing to worry about. I hope this allays her fears.

    Muslim men have always worn the traditional cap and coat and sarong at official ceremonies like weddings. But now that too is changing. We see men wearing ‘full suit’ at weddings and other occasions including business events and there are Muslim men who continue to wear the graceful Salwar Kameez as well. Come to think of it, we see even Sinhala boys wearing that now at weddings and other functions. The other day I saw a young lad wearing this on a song contest on TV. Why should we see a problem there? These are ‘mod’ days after all!

    It is true that the word ‘kaffir’ has become loaded. This happened during the crusades. To the crusaders Muslims were heathen at that point of time. The Sinhalese were not the only victims of the Portuguese as Waduge tells us. Muslims too paid a heavy price for being Muslims.

    The word infidel is referred to those enemies of Islam during its nascent stages who wanted to put an end to the faith. ‘The inclusion of the word ‘al’ before kafireen in the Qur’an limits the word to a specific time and place in history’, according to Qasim Rashid of the Muslim writers Guild of America. He says that the word al-kafiroon refers ‘to a specific group of people who were obstacles to the establishment of Islam in its nascent stages’. It was these two factors that caused the revelations of these verses. He goes on to say that ‘if the intention of the Qur’an had been to extend the application of these verses in perpetuity, it would have used ‘Man-Kafar rather than ‘Al-Kafireen’. Man kafar literally means anyone who does not believe in God. Al Kafireen – the infidels – denotes a specific group of people who fought the Prophet (pboh) in the early stages of Islam. Moreover, the overriding principle which must ultimately guide our understanding of these verses is the constant Quranic reminder that good Muslims do not initiate violence against others. Hope this explanation would put to rest, Shenali Waduge’s fears about Islam and Muslims once and for all.
    Surah 9:29

    Shenali Waduge goes on to quote Surah 9:29 which talks about war. This verse too is confined to that time when the enemies of Islam wanted to crush the new faith and had declared war on Muslims. The divine order came to fight back and fight the Muslims did because their lives were at stake. And they won against all odds, with God’s help. This incident provides a classic example of the fact that Islam was not spread by any violent means as is the common view among many non-Muslims. If the spread of Islam was by the sword then these people would have been forced to convert to the new faith or be killed. But this didn’t happen. Instead those non-Muslims, after being subdued, were asked to pay Jizya (tax/compensation) if they chose to live in peace. Imam Abu Hanifa, a leading scholar and the founder of the Hanafi school of thought says that the tax varied in amount and there were exemptions for the poor, for females and children. Basically the tax was more of a symbolic nature and the amounts levied hardly amounted to anything. Don’t forget the Muslims had to pay and continue to pay tax as well. They had to pay Zakat which is 2.5 percent of their wealth in charity. And more often than not, Zakat was higher than Jizya. Islam is the only religion that has made charity compulsory for its adherents. Anyway, with the advent of new taxes Jizya, has ceased to exist.

    Waduge must read the Qur’an in its context. Has she read the numerous verses on the peace that the Qur’an speaks about? Let me quote just one. “But if the enemy inclines towards peace, you too incline towards peace, and trust in Allah, for He is the One who hears and knows all things. Qur’an 8:61.

    As for war, I am afraid, sometimes this becomes a necessary evil. Didn’t we go to war against the two JVP uprisings and the LTTE when the very existence of the nation was at stake?

    Waduge poses the question ‘didn’t the Taliban destroy the Bamiyan Buddha statues’. I have told over and over again that the Taliban are a lunatic fringe. And the fact that the statues stood for so many centuries is an indication that Muslims were not averse to historical sites until the nut cases came along. The destruction of these valuable statues is a stain on Muslims. I remember with gratitude that there were a whole lot of Sinhala Buddhists who wrote poignant articles to condemn the destruction of the shrine at Anuradhapura and the attack on the mosque at Dambulla. And at this point I must salute Lands Minister Janaka Bandara Tennakoon for his prompt public announcement in dispelling the falsehood that the mosque stood on ‘sacred ground’ of the Sinhala Buddhism. He categorically stated that the mosque was outside the ‘sacred ground’ and for this all right thinking people must be grateful to him.
    Jews and Christians

    As for not taking Jews and Christians for friends the writer is again quoting out of context. Imam Ibn Kathir had said that some scholars say that this verse was revealed after a battle in which the Muslims suffered a setback. At that time a Muslim from Medina wanted to go to live with the Jews so that he’ll be safe in case another attack took place. Another Muslim said he was going to live with Christians for the same purpose. So God revealed this verse reminding the Muslims that they should not seek protection from others, but should protect each other.

    The Qur’an was revealed at different stages for 23 years and a large section of it is in answer to situations and questions that people, including the Jews and Christians of the time, raised. Besides, there is an allowance in the Qur’an for Muslims to marry Christians or Jews. If that is the case then obviously the interpretation that Shenali Waduge gives to the particular verse is wrong. Moreover a lot of Christians and Jews in the West, both men and women, embrace Islam on a daily basis. Go to the website ‘Jews for Allah’ and see what I mean. Muslims like me have Christian friends as well as Sinhala Buddhists and Tamils and people of all races in the country. I am personally in touch with Jews by e-mail.

    Arab Christians have played prominent roles in their respective countries. The Baath ideology, whether, right or wrong is beside the point, was founded by Michele Aflaq. Tariq Abdul Aziz, whether good or bad, was Iraq’s foreign minister and played a leading role in Saddam Hussein’s regime. Boutros Boutros Ghali was Egypt’s Foreign Minister. George Habash was the leader of the PFLP, a Palestinian resistant group. Hanan Ashrawi is a prominent member of the Palestinian Authority. Rev. Father Ilyas Chacour is a leading intellectual fighting for the cause of his country, Palestine. All of them are Christians. These are the names that come to mind, but I am sure there are many more.
    Other issues

    Shenali Waduge has thrown many straws in the wind. I have answered as many as I could. So let me briefly touch on others. I, for one, would be glad if the mosques reduced the sounds in the loudspeakers to the barest minimum. When Sinhalese or Hindu friends come over for meals we make it a point not to serve beef as Shenali claims. Wahabis are not a problem to any Sinhala Buddhist. If at all they are a problem, they are a problem to fellow Muslims. But today the differences that existed at the initial stages are almost non-existent. Though I am sure crackpots exist in all communities. To take just a few rotten eggs as a reflection on the entire community would be a wrong idea.

    Discussions like these could go on forever and create animosity in the process. And if I go on any further the good editor will blow a fuse. So I’ll stop now. What we should do is get together and talk thing over in a civil manner. I would be only too glad to host Shenali Waduge to a meal at my place. We could serve a vegetarian meal so that the question of halaal does not crop up. Shenali could come with her husband (if she’s married) or a male relative or friend. I promise you my ‘favourite’ wife is a super cook. There I end with an invitation and a little humour.

  14. Lorenzo Says:

    Here Sewermeer blames Sinhalese and Buddhists, in another post he says stop breaking relations between communities!

    Typical hat turning tactics as the Tamil proverb says!

  15. sawmeer Says:

    Lorenzo i am not blaming good Sinhala buddhist but i am blaming the RACIST SINHALA BUDDHIST LIKE you, bodu bala senawa, sinhala rawaya, jhu, senali waduge etc who spreading lies in the name of Islam and Muslim, Even Muslim and Muslim countries support Sri Lanka against Jeneeva convention.. When Muslim contributed to Sri Lanka economy, When Muslim youth dead in the war against LTTE like major Mutalif, We love this country and we will die for this country, But we will not keep quite like you people simply blaming Muslim and Islam for nothing.

  16. Lorenzo Says:


    We (the ENTIRE world) know you are racists practicing a violent religion.

    Ask Jews, Christians, Hindus, Buddhists, Atheists, Confucius followers, etc. Islam is BANNED in peaceful Japan. They ALL cannot be wrong. They ALL say the same thing! Please read the religion of peace website.

    Major Mutalif NEVER quoted from that violent book of yours!!

    Saudi the guardian of Islam voted against us.

    BTW you know the Tamil proverb. How marvelously true it is!!

  17. Lorenzo Says:

    I hope Waduge is safe. She has written the truth very decently without hurting anyone. She has spoken for the WORLD COMMUNITY.

    We are dealing with a very violent barbaric group. Extreme care should be taken when handling them. Or get help from countries that have TAMED them.

    Complaining about their violence, etc. is not taking us anywhere. What is needed is ACTION carefully planned and executed Israeli style without disturbing the peace.

    BTW SL has rejected US calls to send troops to Afghanistan.

  18. Insula Says:

    Old Barbarians: Ba Ba Ba Ba Ba did not Speak Greek.

    Then, it was not speaking Latin, Hebrew, Aramaic, Arabic, Mongol, Persian, English, French, German, Russian,Hindi, Sanskrit, Tamil, Sinhalese Chines, Japanese, Sudanese etc.

    I am correct you are wrong- Barbarian.
    My Language is Sacred, and God only listens to my language and not to yours. Yours is the evil Lagrange, the Devils Language. God revealed the scriptures in my Language only. You will be treated as a slave or a second class faithful.

    My race us superior. Yours is not. We are created by God. You were created from animals ( no offense ) .

    So Sinhalese, Arabs, Tamils, Jews, North Indians, Germans, Europeans are superior. The Blacks are inferior, something between an an animal and a human. Therefore we can enslave them.

    This is RACISM. Pure and Simple. Ethnic Racism or Religious racism. Same concept.

    Go and analyse your DNA and see how far are you from humans relatives, the apes, the pigs, the horses, the bacteria and the plants.

    The truth will come out.

    Thank Science for Saving mankind from the myths and the idiots.

  19. Insula Says:

    Lorenzo Says:
    February 5th, 2013 at 5:42 am
    I hope Waduge is safe. She has written the truth very decently without hurting anyone. She has spoken for the WORLD COMMUNITY.

    We are dealing with a very violent barbaric group. Extreme care should be taken when handling them. Or get help from countries that have TAMED them.

    Truth goes BOTH ways. However, here it is selective. Only Truth that supports a particular viewpoint is allowed.

    Need to be transparent and provide all viewpoints., that are supported by facts. and truth.

    This blog screens for promoting its own viewpoints and does not allow for dissent. This is precisely what the Wahaabis do.

    However, you can suppress the truth only for s long. Is this website only for the converted?

  20. Senevirath Says:

    S de Silva is correct Buddhists have no place to go but tamils have Tamilnadu That is why nearly 6000 peoplewent and came back within these 3 years It is their safe haven So by hook or crook we have to save our country for our future

    If Muslims come to power we are finished NO MORE BUDDHIST INDUNESIA < AFGHANISTAN MALDIVES
    These are clear facts

    Now australians have understood this. That is why they try to stop tamils going there

    Read A B C interview

    One fact missing in KAALAMA SUTHRA
    Last word says" Follow VIGNNU s . There may be things we cannot understand then we have to ask from Learned ones _

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