Can we only imagine what we could’ve been as an Independent Nation?
By Asha Perera
None of us can ever forget the song 'Imagine', co-written by John Lennon & Yoko Ono in 1971. The chorus being ... "You may say I'm a dreamer, but I'm not the only one, I hope someday you'll join us, and the world will live as one...."
The power of affirmations.
It was composed from a higher perspective of understanding the power of love and unity, As opposed to the division brought on by ethnicity, religion and borders. To imagine is a form of affirmation when done positively. What we say in a positive manner can be a life altering affirmation, in manifesting a desired outcome for the betterment of an individual or a collective. So, why not affirm peace, loveand unity for our country and mother earth? Despite the constant negative inputs around us about the terrible state of the worldand our nation is in. If we take a moment to affirm all that's negative into a frame of positivity, it will cause a chain reaction of similar perception of happiness, laughter andjoy, and it can be as contagious as the common cold. If it's to become viral on social media, it will definitely change the old negative thinking patterns. Food for thought my friends, isn't it time for us to shift from the old ways of negativity and envision a Nation and a World full of joy for all beings?
A silent revolution throughout history
There has been a silent revolution in the world of Art, Literature, Music, Theatre and Cinema, if one looks into history. They have provided inspiration to awaken people from their deep slumber of many lifetimesand make them realize that war, division and hatred are simply means of keeping humanity divided, In order for a minority of the population to profit from a majority's insecurities. If only, human realize that a small minority controls a vast majority by basic psychological programming, in order to amass wealth at the cost of human lives and suffering, and in order to free ourselves, we need to focus on unity consciousness and our own capability of rising above chaos created to blind us to the truth.
Origin of division
Religion was not intended to divide us; none of the masters spoke of hatred. They spoke of the divine embodiment of love and compassion. It was politics which distorted their pure wisdom into what exists today, as a means of division amongst us. Human have been programmed by the social system we live in, to be busy looking for what divides us, rather than look at what unites us.
United we rise and divided we fall, fall means we're powerless. As the famous quote from the 1819 British Political Poem ( The Mask of Anarchy) written by Percy ByssheShelley , the poem ends with this..."We are many they are few......" And this was the driving force behind Gandhi's nonviolent approach to freeing India. And it's long overdue for us Lankans to stand by our rights and contribute to this process of awakening, if it's not for us at least for our children. Our right to enjoying life, it means to live in joy!
Overcoming fear-based mentality
It's time to realize that "fear" has and is being used on a daily basis to limit us from feeling "love" and "contentment". The use of fear is so subtle that it's so very well used in marketing products of all sorts, simply by magnifying our insecurities which lead us into buying things which we don't need. The truth being, if fear and lack are not created nothing sells, politics doesn't work and we won't need so many MPs to live off our taxes. Similarly, we are sold insurance, based on probability of sickness anddisability.
Most of which never happens and they know it, we pay for our own fears then beg for it when in distress, do we get what was promised? If not we may not have read the clauses in tiny print! Much like the same way votes are canvassed with promises which haven't been addressed for the past 70 years, in our country. Leaders of our nation have become experts at putting on band aids on festering wounds. Instead of treating the root cause they opt for quick fixes. Much like a badly-run household which depends upon credits from the "petti kadey" and sell whatever valuables to get by, on a daily basis. Does it ring a bell? Which is our countries' "petti kadey "? That decides upon how we should manage the affairs of our own country and citizens. They dictate terms based on our dependence and insecurities, simply because, the one's who're supposed to manage our affairs are busy filling up their pockets. What are we leaving behind for the generations to come? What will be their Legacy?
The minority who decides our fate
A minority decides upon the fate of a majority. Why do we give our power away time after time, only to be disappointed each year! Seven decades of which three were spent on a civil war, what of the other four and in between? When will they ever realize that we cannot live on luck and the generosity of others? That issues need to be addressed instead of being swept under the carpet and the blame game isn't cute anymore! Musical chairs performed every five years don't seem to work anymore! We're sick of the same old tune. Seventy years playing and it's an old record, time to change it! Better yet a whole new band of musicians, but where from? Is the question.
A time to question and reflect
The people in places of authority, do they question the escalating brain drain, increased number of drug addicts, robberies and other negative factors which have taken a toll on our society andeconomy. Every year we lose so many gifted studentsand professionals, who have benefitted from our free education and opt to migrate overseas, we cannot blame them. We all want to be appreciated, rewardedand live without suffering. But it doesn't make sense, when we let our professionals leave and pay higher wages for non-national's flown in to do the same. Our women are sent to work in foreign countries endangering their lives and breaking up their family units. Which cause a chain reaction of negativity, with children being molested, enticed into drugs and alcohol etc. We call ourselves a Buddhist nation and yet sell our women into glorified slavery, which is against the truth of the eightfold path. Why are we not questioning the reasons for all this? What do we lack to retain these people? Why can't our nation implement a new social structure?, Where citizens are taught from younger days to cultivate kindness, considerationand integrity.
The lack of consideration for others is quite obvious, when we look at the behaviour of the general publicand to the echelons of power in our Nation. So who's going to start the mentoring process in this nation?
Diversity and Uniqueness
Instead of teaching students to be so competitive against each other from an early age, that they fight/quarrel over petty things due to envy and jealousy, and sadly parents do fuel it up by demanding so much from their childhood years. Which leave them with no time to enjoy the innocence of their youth. Why not they be guided to realize that in life, "the only person we should be competing against is ourselves", we should always strive to be a better version of ourselves, with each passing year! When we try to be better than others or acquire more than them, we end up in a mess. Instead if we concentrate on our contentment and progress, there's more freedom for growth and empowerment. This applies to individuals as well as our nation; we are so hell bent on being like our neighbouring countries so that we've forgotten our own uniqueness. This world is so beautiful because of its diversity, if so why are we getting in to the "clone culture"? Why do others visit our Island nation? Is it to see the same things which they have in their countries? Or for the joy of seeing and experiencing the diversity, culture anduniqueness of our tiny Island? What will happen to tourism once the beaches, forests, flora, fauna and sites of historical importance are destroyed due to our own negligence? Will they visit here to look at our concrete jungle?
Where's the young blood?
With so many migrating from our country, the young blood that's needed to retain our sovereignty is lost ,and if there's no social restructuring to add value, meaning and joy to living in this nation, this trend will continue. They say when great ships are sinking even the rats jump overboard. Is that what happening to our country? Are we a sinking ship? That's being deserted because we're running out of resources and basic human values that are needed to build a righteous society? Or, to retain civilized citizens? If so, what can us as individuals do? ,to be positive in an environment, where we're bombarded with negativity in various forms. Do we look to our chosen faith, our religious leaders and elders, for guidance and solace? Or do we opt to manifesting a life of abundance for all despite the negative forces at play, the choice is ours. May we choose calm over chaos, love over hatred and hope for the dawn of righteousness? If we look for further inspiration into uniqueness, as we're a predominantly Buddhist nation, may we reflect upon the Journey of Lord Buddha, towards enlightenment .If he had paid attention to the ones around him or wasn't brave enough to venture out on his own, after having been a disciple of other masters, we wouldn't have the gift of Dhamma and the path to enlightenment. His goal was empowerment, contentment and liberation. So what are we practicing?
Jesus said ... "the truth will set you free" (John 8.31/2) in knowing so, truth remains as it is and may we find freedom within until such time it manifests here!
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