Author Archive for Rohana R. Wasala

Friday Forum! Quo vadis? Running errands for someone?

Thursday, September 19th, 2019

By Rohana R. Wasala Friday Forum’s observations on Presidential Elections And The Peoples’ Options” (sic) published in The Island of September 3, 2019, are far wide of the mark. This is not surprising in view of their past press releases about related or similar topics. The ‘peoples’ in the title implies that the internationally respected […]

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Professor Carlo Fonseka – A Tribute

Tuesday, September 3rd, 2019

By Rohana R. Wasala Courtesy The Island Those who pursue the higher life of wisdom, who seek to live by spiritual principles, must be prepared to be laughed at and condemned.” Epictetus, Greek Stoic philosopher (55-135 CE) (Following is an updated version of an article published in two parts in The Island in the last […]

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A role for Sajith and UNP ginger group

Tuesday, August 27th, 2019

BY ROHANA R. WASALA Courtesy The Island The artificially sensationalized controversy within the UNP ranks about the authenticity of the party deputy leader Sajith Premadasa’s educational qualifications, in the twilight of its barely legitimate rule, is a strangely anticlimactic, but justly retributive, reversal of its unbroken mudslinging campaign against the Rajapaksas, whose democratic return to […]

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NO BETTER CHAMPION TO TAKE UP THE CHALLENGE THAN GOTABHAYA

Tuesday, August 20th, 2019

By ROHANA R. WASALA And we shall play a game of chess, Pressing lidless eyes and waiting for a knock upon the door. –·  From ‘A Game of Chess’ (the second canto of The Waste Land” by T.S. Eliot) (The following article was first published in The Island and Lankaweb simultaneously on June 29, 2016, […]

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SLPP VERSUS UNP PRESIDENTIAL PROSPECTS AND SAJITH P’S HAMARTIA

Saturday, August 10th, 2019

By Rohana R. Wasala (‘Hamartia’ is the fatal flaw that leads to the downfall of the tragic hero in classical Greek Tragedy; it is Greek for ‘missing the mark’.) The artificially sensationalised controversy within the UNP ranks about the authenticity of the party deputy leader Sajith Premadasa’s educational qualifications in the evening twilight of its […]

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NAZIS, NARCISSISTS AND NINCOMPOOPS!

Wednesday, July 31st, 2019

By Rohana R. Wasala ‘I am an entertainer, albeit one with the temerity to deal frequently with serious ideas, concepts or – as we say in the theater, where I came from – the spines” of drama. Simple things like the abuse of power, the conspiracies of manipulators, the debasers of the public weal, the […]

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BBS CONVENTION IN KANDY, JULY 7, 2019

Saturday, July 20th, 2019

By Rohana R. Wasala The Bodu Bala Sena organization held (seemingly the first edition of) its Siv Hele Maha Samuluwa or National Convention of Siv Hela  at the Bogambara Grounds in Kandy on July 7, 2019. Its purpose was, presumably, to propose a democratic, non-violent way out of the present political morass that the country […]

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LISTEN TO THE ROARING LAMBS

Saturday, July 13th, 2019

By  Rohana R. Wasala It would probably not be an exaggeration to say that more outrage was expressed by interested parties at an incidental comment made by the Most Venerable Warakagoga Gnanarathana, the Mahanayake Thera of the Asgiriya Chapter, during an anusasanawa (homily) than at the April 21 Easter Sunday suicide bombings by Wahhabi Islamists. […]

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First Stirrings of a Sinhala Buddhist Spring – II

Friday, July 5th, 2019

By  Rohana R. Wasala The polity consisting of the majority community (Sinhalese) cannot behave like this. In any country, it is normal for the majority community to be unconsciously undermined by a false sense of security vis-a-vis the minorities, whereas the latter feel a bit too paranoid with or without reason. The Sinhalese voting public […]

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First Stirrings of a Sinhala Buddhist Spring – I

Wednesday, July 3rd, 2019

By Rohana R. Wasala Five hundred years of European colonial occupation could not destroy the dominant Sinhalese Buddhist cultural identity of Sri Lanka. The Sinhalese have a distinct language called Sinhala that evolved entirely out of indigenous roots over thousands of years. It is one of the few still extant oldest languages in the world. […]

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HANGING TO HANG ON

Monday, July 1st, 2019

By Rohana R. Wasala We are dismayed by these reports that will see Sri Lanka surrender its positive record on the death penalty. Executions will not rid Sri Lanka of drug-related crime. They represent the failure to build a humane society where the protection of life is valued. The last thing that Sri Lanka needs […]

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Of Barbarians and Blockheads

Sunday, June 30th, 2019

By Rohana R. Wasala The true barbarian is he who thinks everything barbarous but his own tastes and prejudices. -William Hazlitt Sunday Island columnist Sanjana Hattotuwa (‘What we are today’/June 23, 2019), as if stoned on the drug of racist hatred and prejudice against the majority Sinhalese Buddhists who constitute 70% of the Sri Lankan […]

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Poson Brings ‘Hope, the Only Thing Stronger than Fear’

Friday, June 21st, 2019

By Rohana R. Wasala Buddhism aims at creating a society where the ruinous struggle for power is renounced; where calm and peace prevail away from conquest and defeat; where the persecution of the innocent is vehemently denounced; where one who conquers oneself is more respected than those who conquer millions by military and economic warfare; […]

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BAILA EPA, Cassandra!

Tuesday, June 11th, 2019

By Rohana R. Wasala Courtesy The Island Cassandra ends her piece ‘Cry the Beloved Country’ (The Island/June 7, 2019) with an ominous note contained in these words, where she refers to herself in the third person, as she usually does in her weekly column to give her writing a dramatic touch: Honestly Cassandra has lost […]

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Bathiuddeen stations another set of Saharans at Wilachchikulama

Friday, June 7th, 2019

බදියුදීන් විලච්චිකුලමේ තවත් සහරාන්ලා පිරිසක් රදවයි.. lankacnews.com/June 7, 2019 (Unsolicited verbatim translation by Rohana R. Wasala without any commitment to the veracity of its contents.) It has now been revealed that, in the recent past, there were safe houses that provided security for Wahhabist terrorists in the Muslim villages established by the person called Rishad […]

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Crimes Unpardonable

Wednesday, June 5th, 2019

By Rohana R. Wasala Many opinion writers, particularly in the English medium newspapers, expressed more consternation at the release from prison of the Bodu Bala Sena leader Ven. Galaboda-aththe Gnanasara Thera on May 23, 2019 than they did at the National Thawheed Jamat’s terrorist suicide bombings on the Easter Sunday a month before (i.e., on […]

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WHY DOES THE UN CRY WOLF, CONCERNING SRI LANKA, AND THE EUROPEAN UNION BLEAT IN UNISON?

Wednesday, May 22nd, 2019

By Rohana R. Wasala This is a concerned ordinary Sri Lankan’s response to two statements coming from the West regarding Sri Lanka. No sane Sri Lankan would deny that the country has been brought to the brink of disintegration and destruction, to the boundary (the event horizon) of a black hole from which no return […]

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Abolish the presidential system of government: Friday Forum. Why? Is it the mother of all evils? – II

Wednesday, May 15th, 2019

By Rohana R. Wasala (Please bear with me, Readers. In the following sentence from Part I: Most of the observations these reputed intellectuals make through this statement about the failures of governance that facilitated the recent attacks on some mosques and hotels (in Negambo, Colombo and Baticaloa) are generally correct;….”, the word ‘mosques’ is a […]

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Abolish the presidential system of government: Friday Forum. Why? Is it the mother of all evils? – I

Tuesday, May 14th, 2019

By Rohana R. Wasala Introduction The question in the title is relevant to the current crisis in Sri Lanka. The sudden (actually, it was not sudden, it was years in the making, as it shockingly transpires now) incursion of ISIS terror is the only significant ‘foreign direct investment’ that the Yahapalana government has attracted, that […]

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‘Everybody Lies’, a book on Big Data: Benefits of Digital Truth Serum

Saturday, April 20th, 2019

By Rohana R. Wasala Courtesy The Island ‘Everybody Lies – What the Internet Can Tell Us about Who We Really Are’ (Seth Stephens – Davidowitz, London, Bloomsbury Publishing, Paperback edition, 2018, 338 pp, ISBN 978 – 1- 4088 – 9473 – 6) is a book on Big Data (a term explained below), which introduces a […]

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‘How can we know the dancer from the dance?’ A comment on the recent dialogue about the anatta doctrine in Buddhism

Wednesday, March 20th, 2019

By Rohana R.Wasala There was recently an exchange of views published in The Island newspaper between February 22 and March 14, 2019 and here in Lankaweb in the same period concerning the concept of ‘anatta’ in Buddhism (traditionally translated into English as soullessness, no-soul, non-self, etc). One of the most definitive responses, in my view, […]

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BRIEF ANSWERS TO THE BIG QUESTIONS: STEPHEN HAWKING’S OFFERING TO HUMANITY

Tuesday, February 12th, 2019

By Rohana R. Wasala Our future is a race  between the growing power of our technology and the wisdom with which we use it. Let’s make sure that wisdom wins.-Stephen Hawking (The following essay by me as a nontechnical reader of BRIEF ANSWERS TO THE BIG QUESTIONS and a longtime Hawking fan refers to its […]

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Red herrings and real issues

Tuesday, January 22nd, 2019

By Rohana R. Wasala Courtesy The Island Ref. ‘Saving Sri Lanka!’/The Island/January 17, 2019 by Fr J.C. Pieris. It is a response to certain critical comments that I made in The Island of January 9 on a previous article published in the same paper on January 2 by T.M. Premawardana (translated by Fr Pieris). The […]

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Answer to the question ‘Who can save Sri Lanka?’

Thursday, January 10th, 2019

By Rohana R. Wasala Courtesy The Island Throughout history, it has been the inaction of those who should have known better, the silence of the voice of justice when it mattered most, that has made it possible for evil to triumph. Haile Selassie (Emperor of Ethiopia 1930-74) The admirable feature article ‘Who can save Sri […]

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‘Dhatusena’ – Rehabilitating Kashyapa   

Tuesday, December 25th, 2018

By Rohana R. Wasala History repeats itself, first as tragedy, second as farce. -Karl Marx ‘Dhatusena’(ISBN 978-955-0955-79-4/Visidunu Prakashakayo Pvt Ltd, Boralesgamuwa, Sri Lanka, 2017) is a short historical novel in Sinhala written by veteran novelist, poet, and socio-political thinker and activist Dr Gunadasa Amerasekera. It is a story related by a first person narrator who […]

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ELECT A NEW PARLIAMENT WITHOUT FURTHER ADO!

Friday, November 30th, 2018

By Rohana R. Wasala In a democracy, constitutions can be drafted, revised or replaced by the people as they wish, but when such a sovereign nation is disintegrated through a constitution (or by some other means), it can hardly be reintegrated into unity. Sri Lanka is today being threatened by one of the worst existential […]

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‘LINCOLN IN THE BARDO’: Loving in a World of Conditionality

Saturday, November 17th, 2018

By Rohana R. Wasala The 2017 Man Booker Prize winning novel ‘Lincoln in the Bardo’ by American writer of fiction George Saunders is almost entirely peopled by corpses or ghosts in the Oak Hill Cemetery in Georgetown, Washington DC, on a February night in 1862. The text reads like a film or drama script that […]

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Sinhala Only’ in Retrospect

Thursday, November 8th, 2018

By Rohana R. Wasala Courtesy The Daily Mirror The ‘Sinhala Only’ legislation of 1956 was immediately turned into a bogey by anti-majority propagandists to frighten off progressive political reforms aimed at redressing the historical injustices perpetrated against the nation by European occupations of the previous 450 years. But the dethronement of English by making Sinhala […]

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The envious hate those whom they can’t help admiring

Sunday, October 28th, 2018

By Rohana R. Wasala As a fairly frequent contributor to Lankaweb I welcome feedback from discerning readers. My way is to accept decent responses with equanimity whether they are positive or negative. But I pay more attention to negative comments, because they usually reflect on aspects of an issue that I might have failed to […]

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Mahavamsa : 2500-year history of  heroic Sinhalay people mellowed by humanity

Wednesday, October 24th, 2018

By Rohana R. Wasala Courtesy: The Daily Mirror The  Mahavamsa or The Great Chronicle of Ceylon (to use the title of the English translation by Wilhelm Geiger of the ancient classic) is a book of history in the form of a poem in the Pali language composed by a Bhikkhu named Mahanama at Anuradhapura around the […]

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