Kamala Harris is 50% Tamil. There is nothing wrong with that. I, personally, though I am, by birth, a Sri Lankan Sinhalese, have nothing against Tamils in general — though, I, like million others, were not fond of what the ‘Tamil Tigers‘ did in Sri Lanka. My current doctor, BY CHOICE, is Tamil and my prior cardiologist (who has since moved away from New Hampshire) was also Tamil. Growing up our neighbours, who we interacted daily, and were very much part of the family, were Tamil and one of our closest family friends (a gifted sculptor from Madras (now Chennai)) was Tamil.
Yes, 99.5% of Americans would never have heard of the ‘Tamil Tigers’ or care what or who they are. But, there are millions who do worry about the ‘Tamil Tigers’ — and there are probably a few thousand Sinhalese with American citizenship that will factor this in when they vote in 2020.
IF (and that is a HUGE, HUGE ‘IF’) Kamala Harris becomes president her attitude towards the Tamil Tigers will be pivotal.
If she is sympathetic to them, despite all of the International condemnations, it could change the balance of power in central Asia. India would be happy, BUT not China. Sri Lanka would be screwed.
I doubt whether this will ever come up in a debate.
But, somebody needs to ask her this question, on the record.
Don’t you think so?
Though I have associated with Sikhs for many decades, I am embarrassed to confess that I only came to fully appreciate ‘Vaisakhi’ last year.
That ‘Vaisakhi’ always coincides with the Sinhala New Year — which is typically on April 14 — makes it even more special and memorable. They are basically both Spring festivals.
In general Sikhs are good people, have good hearts. I like Sikhs.
So, Happy Vaisakhi 2019. Enjoy.
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Yes, I am wading through the 1,000+ page ‘The Covenant‘ by James Michener with my usual enthusiasm for Michener’s writing. I learn so much from Michener that I have no choice but to forgive him his occasional fobile. Indubitably, I think the world of him. How I wish I could be 1/1,000,000,000,000,000,000 of the writer he was.
But, James confounds me every once in awhile and he takes my breath away.
This statement, that us, the Singhalese (and I spell it without the ‘g’) are well known thieves caught me by surprise. And way back in the 1820s.
We have many shortcomings but thieving isn’t high among them — I think.
Of course, we have thievery BUT I had never thought it was anywhere beyond average.
James has a thing about Ceylon.
He, extensively travelled, must have visited Ceylon at some stage. He mentions Ceylon often,
But, I am not sure about this reference.
Not a big deal. Just amusing. He might even be WRONG!
The ‘Michener Corner’ in my study.
Separate from all the other books.
“Vaisakhi”, The Sikh Festive Celebration, Coincides Each Year With The Sinhala New Year (On April 13 – 14).
But, in all that time I never knew of this festival. Wow.
So, a few minutes ago, I did some Googling. I am shocked. Wow.
But, I realize that it is NOT a coincidence!
The Sikhs and the Sinhalese are RELATED — we are both people of the ‘Singh‘ — i.e., the Lion.
All Sikhs have ‘Singh’ in their name, and ‘Sinhalese’ starts with ‘Sin(g)h’. Plus, we have the rampant LION on our flag.
But, we and the Sikhs are from FAR Northwestern ‘India’ — actually what is now the area occupied by Iran.
Neato! I will have to find out more. Now I know where I can celebrate Sinhala New Year. With the Sikhs.
Search ‘Friday the 13th’ & ‘Sinhala New Year’
Click to ENLARGE.
I, alas, can no longer read Sinhalese (or for that matter understand or speak it), though in my youth, 50-years ago, I was proficient enough to get a straight ‘A’, at ‘A-level’, in my Sinhalese exam.
So, whenever I see anything, all in Sinhalese, on my Facebook Timeline I have to invoke Translation.
The above is what I got.
I smell a rat.
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Why does English insist on being so confusing, confounding, cruel and callous to us foreigners. Why can’t it be simple and logical like Sinhalese (my native tongue) or Hindi (that of “The New Camera”).
‘Fast’ refers to speed, so why is ‘fasten’ not related to speed?
So confusing. It is so bad like with ‘good’. I never understood why it is never good, gooder and goodest. Sounds good to I.
I am convinced it is a conspiracy to make us foreigners sound bad, if just having an accent wasn’t more bad.
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by Anura Guruge
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As a Reformed, Born-Again, Heathen I LOVE Christmas and always have. I love everything about Christmas — and I have even been known to go to church on Christmas eve because I love the music and pageantry.
My surrogate father [who I called ‘Ta’ (the first two letters of ‘Tatta’, the Sinhalese (and Yiddish) word for father), and after who I take after the most in terms of personality] was a mainly-white, Burgher Baptist. I used to spend all my weekends and holidays with them — he and his wife (my adoptive mother’s older sister). They had no children and he was a lawyer (the solicitor for the Ceylon Ministry of Food) and she the Deputy Principal of Ceylon’s largest and most prestigious school. I MADE OUT LIKE A BANDIT. I was to learn that Ta shopped right through the year to make sure he got enough presents for me at Christmas! Very early on WE dispensed with Christmas stockings. They were too small. He instituted the notion of Christmas PILLOWCASES — and soon we had to have two. He also did an elaborate Christmas dinner, with all the works, for the entire family — most of whom were Buddhists — on Christmas Day. So I was inculcated into the joys of Christmas since a baby.
I am also very partial to Advent calendars — ever since I encountered them. For whatever reason we did not have them in Ceylon. To be honest I only encountered Advent calendars quite ‘late’ in my life. In my early 20s. Over the years I used to collect fancy Advent calendars. I used to have a really nice, royal blue and gold, 3D Cathedral one. You opened a portal each day. I think we have bits of it still. But since it was made of stiff paper it eventually started to fall apart.
Of late I don’t bother with a calendar for myself. More fun to let the kids enjoy. Yes, I get them — and Deanna — chocolate ones. I buy a LOT of them each year because I LOVE to give them to people. That reminds me. I will have to go to Hannaford and buy 20 – 25 today! Well, the kids end up getting two each. And one for Deanna. So that is 5 straight off the bat. And at Christmas I love to play the tanned St. Nicholas …
A couple of years ago I discovered the LEGO Advent Calendars. Now I get one each year for Teischan. See above.
Given my interest in religion (in particular early Christianity) I do appreciate that what WE mainly celebrate as Advent is the COMMERCIAL Advent as opposed to the Liturgical Advent. And ironically Advent isn’t a countdown to Christmas BUT to the Second Coming of Christ — and there is BIG difference. Liturgically the Advent does not start on Dec. 1 (unless it happens to fall on a Sunday). Never mind. This year we are close.
Rejoice. Enjoy. Be Merry. The Advent is upon us.