How will we recognize our enemies, friends, relatives?
(Aprox. translation of Ilanga Bhawaye song's first verse)
No matter what religious, ethnic or racial group.. ancient Sri Lankan traditions placed much emphasis on understanding, tolerance and respect for all creeds. This vision alone is one of the greatest gifts we can give to our sons & daughters.. and it is the finest contribution we can offer towards World peace and harmony.
Great majority of humans aspire to develop democracy on many frontiers of our Earth. Sri Lanka is a nation that has been nourished by a democratic and practical philosophy for thousands of years. Abiding by this philosophy, a magnificent civilization once known as ‘the land without sorrow' was raised by the ancients.
Keeping this in mind, no matter what faith, ethnicity, or race we belong to, .... let us steer clear of the many corruptive forces (malice, hate, greed, jealousy, exploitations, ignorance, etc) that can erode our society from its very foundations.
At a time when inhabitants of a nation are ruthlessly gripped by heartbreaking tragedies of warfare (extending more than fifteen years), the urgency to ease their suffering is greater than ever before.
Past years have been a seemingly endless nightmare to the large number of innocent civilians throughout the land. Children have grown up to become young adults without ever knowing or experiencing a motherland unspoiled by wounds of hatred. Ethnic hatred turned families, neighbours, countrymen, human beings against one another...transforming a paradise homeland into a frightful war zone.
A forgotten or unknown truth remains beyond their recognition. This was never an ethnic war or simply a civil war between majority of Sinhala and Tamil people of Sri Lanka. Before all the confusion began, they have lived in harmony with each other, as fellow citizens of one island nation. The remarkable civilizations they built, testify to the solidarity that existed in ancient Sri Lankan society.
Unfortunately for the last seventeen years, many people have acutely suffered due to a callous war that they did not induce or plan. Certain extremists and past politicians fueled warfare in order to further their own agendas. They carelessly sacrificed the multiethnic community's unity, freedom and future. No comparison can parallel the depths of destruction these war games have inflicted upon our tiny paradise island and our global village.
Civilians hastily resorting to extremism or violence in retaliation, have/will only worsen the problems by becoming mere puppets of a larger play.
Let us pray for the safety of those on the battle front because they have committed their priceless lives to protect the large multiethnic community of innocent civilians and to defend Sri Lanka's liberty.
The value of collectively searching for peaceful solutions and voicing our concerns (honestly and peacefully) in order to counter false propaganda should never be underestimated.