silent sounds of Freemasonry
Masonic Lodge, Dublin, (inset) The traditional compass
and Dr. Milroy Perera
Dan Brown had
Robert Langdon kneel before (above?) Mary Magdalene under the
stars in his famous bestseller, he was reiterating only one
unchangeable, eternal fact, irrespective of whether the
location of her grave was factual or not. That the truth
cannot be hidden.
powerful may try to wash the dirt off their robes and cleanse
the blood from their hands so history will record sinners as
saints, but no matter how hard or how long it takes, sinners
will finally be revealed as sinners, and saints as saints.
this is a cause of worry to a society, a 'brotherhood', known
as the Freemasons, or a cause for relief, the reader must
judge for himself: until history one day reveals the
truth. All we can do at this point is present both
sides of this ancient tale, and leave it at that.
begin at the beginning, who are they? A Freemason would
respond, as those we spoke to did: that they are one of the
world's oldest fraternal societies.
Milroy Perera, a senior Freemason in Sri Lanka, said the
society began in the 1700s in England, and has been around in
Sri Lanka for
over a century. The Masonic Temple in Colombo is over 100
years old. The organisation was introduced to the country by
European colonists. The membership is held together by shared
moral and metaphysical ideals and - in most of its branches -
by a constitutional declaration of belief in a Supreme Being.
That's one side of the story.
claims that in 1099 AD Pope Urban II declared war on the
Muslim Caliphate to capture the land of Jerusalem, which was
under Muslim rule since 637AD. As much as Freemasons include
men of various faiths, men of all faiths have also professed
to be anti-freemason.
Dome of the Rock (in Jerusalem) was seized by a group of
warrior monks calling themselves the 'Knights of the Temple of
Solomon' or more simply 'The Knights Templers.' According to
some sources, in Jerusalem the Templers learnt the secret art
of the Kabala, an ancient form of Jewish magic, along with its
dark rites and rituals.
1314 AD, Pope Clement V declared all Templers as heretics. The
Templers subsequently formed an alliance with the King of
Scotland, Robert de Bruce and aided him to defeat the strong
English army thus achieving an independent Scotland and
winning favours with the King.
back from the brink of destruction, the Templers allegedly
vowed they would never again allow themselves to be destroyed.
In 1603 King James V of Scotland became King of England by
virtue of descent. In doing so Scotland and England joined to
form a new Kingdom and the power that the Templers held over
Scotland spread to give them a firm grip on the whole of Great
Britain. In order to preserve their secret order the name 'Templers'
was killed and instead the new name they chose for themselves
asked about this theory a carefully polite and courteous Dr.
Perera said it had "neither been proven nor disproved so
far," and he did not know. Often called a 'Secret
Society,' Dr. Perera said it was more correct to merely say
the Freemasons were a 'society with secrets.'
But, he assured, harmless ones that were neither
illegal nor mystical.
belief in God, by whatever name, is essential to being a
Freemason, but according to Dr.Perera, members were forbidden
from discussing business or politics at meetings. It would be
interesting to note however that the Freemasons have been
accused at large of wanting to destroy religion (at least as
we know it) and rule the world.
have been accused of orchestrating everything from the French
Revolution to the war in Iraq, in a bid to gain absolute
power. The United Nations (UN) is widely held to be a
Freemason backed enterprise to form a single world government
and world army and gain total control.
Freemasons holding most major posts in organisations
worldwide, they have been accused of trying to brainwash
people through mass media - using both subliminal and subtle
but direct messages.
range of artistes, from Mozart to Madonna to Michael Jackson
to the Eagles have been accused of being Freemasons or
affiliated, and their works including Jackson's Dangerous,
Madonna's Like A Prayer, The Eagles' Hotel California and
Mozart's symphonies and even the cartoon series, The Simpsons,
are rumoured to be Freemason or 'Satanic' propaganda!
brings us to the crux of the matter is that Freemasons are
often accused of being the Anti-Christ, or the much talked
about Dajjal. Be it said here that The Sunday Leader was, with
great courtesy and hospitality, taken around the Masonic
Temple in Colombo by Dr. Perera, including into a lodge room
where their meetings are held.
admittedly rather dark and eerie, with the traditional compass
in one corner of the room, a large carpet with something like
a stand at the center and a 'stage' of sorts with a
pulpit-like structure in the middle, the room did however
sport a large and lofty copy of the Bible.
Freemason symbols paradoxically contribute to their
association with the Dajjal or Anti-Christ/Satanic elements by
certain sectors. The Holy texts, including the Quran, state
the Dajjal will have only one eye. The Official Masonic symbol
is one eye, often called the "all seeing eye." Other
comparisons do exist, but in fairness cannot be printed
without absolute verification. Briefly though, anti Freemason
groups allege they seek to crush those who do not follow them,
particularly in developing countries through the World Bank's
high interest ploys, and 'play god' by using genetics to alter
the same groups also accuse the Freemasons of wanting to
reduce the Third World population and re-establish white
(Mason) superiority. To this end the group has, in some cases,
even been accused of 'manufacturing' the AIDS virus in
laboratories. On October 26, 1986, The Sunday Express became
the first Western newspaper to run a front-page story
supposedly confirming the findings of Indian and Soviet
newspapers entitled: "AIDS made in lab shock."
this article, a physician Dr. John Seele, and professor Jacob
Seegull, a retired director of the institute of biology at
Berlin University asserted that the AIDS virus was man-made.
there have been many disclosures and expos‚s dating as far
back as the 18th century, Freemasons caution that these often
lack the proper context for true understanding, may be
outdated for various reasons, or could be outright hoaxes on
the part of the author. Please note that whatever Anti
Freemason accusations stated in this article are also merely
'accusations'. To prove or disprove them is currently beyond
all intents and purposes, the Freemasons
claim they are merely a fraternity dating back
centuries, who do have a code of secrecy, which includes
secret signs of recognition and such like, but are basically
the American dollar is replete with freemason imagery, and
includes a picture of the Freemason who headed the American
War of Independence and practically founded America, George
Washington, must then, simply add to their proud heritage and
not, as often alleged, be yet another sign that the Freemasons
have for a long time been eyeing world dominance.
movies a craze around the world
the craze that
is taking over the world by storm in cluding Sri Lanka and
making its very colourful and memorable mark in people's lives
is only getting bigger as the days go by.
Indian film industry is churning out even more movies a year
Lankan youth basically grew up with Hindi movies and Indian
influences given the fact that we are close neighbours.
showed Hindi movies, the radio plays Hindi music, while some
DJs speak fluent Hindi
what makes Bollywood movies popular in the South Asian region,
in Egypt, China, Arabia and the West is its melodrama - the
music, the dancing, the vibrant clothes and even the most
often predicted endings.
people work, striving for a better life and when the weekend
arrives they just want to relax, and one of the best things to
do to unwind would be to watch a movie
which takes your mind away from all the worldly
Hindi movies are
not the typical love story type - they in true spirit
bring to life today's problems of
mixed marriages, corruption, people becoming more
westernised and how Indian culture deals with it, as well as a
whole load of other problems that are cropping up in the world
today from neighbouring countries fighting with each other, to
neighbours belonging to different religions having problems.
the way in which these issues are handled in the movies opens
people's eyes and does in fact bring to light the way crude
there are also the movies that are
typically a fairytale with a melodramatic love story
plagued with intricate problems that are eventually solved and
everyone is happy in the end. And thrown in are the vibrant,
out of this world dance sequences, magnificent costumes and
movie actors are in fact popular the world over from
France, to Egypt, in the former Soviet Union and almost every
country you can imagine. The youth are even copying Indian
types, the flamboyant colours, the accessories and glamour of
the Indian clothes.
popularity was no doubt seen around the world when the
Temptation tour took place; some countries were even selling
these tickets for $ 500 and more.
movies being popular is also not a new phenomenon - since the
'50s or so
Hindi movies were popular.
Now people from all walks of life take to these movies
in a big way and even go to the extent of copying their styles
of clothing and dance.
Sri Lanka at the moment, most of the big cinemas especially in
Colombo are showing the latest Hindi movies, proving the fact
that they are in demand.
crowds outside these cinemas also indicate that people of all
races and ages enjoy them and despite clinch‚s about the
Hindi movies, these movies are, at the end of the day a means
of enjoyment affordable to all.
Bollywood movies are popular because the stories bring out
righteous beliefs in motherhood, patriotism, true love and
three newly released popular Hindi movies
are being shown - one is Salaam-E-Ishq, a story of six
different couples and their lives, problems and joys.
romance movie was directed by Nikhil Advani, the cast includes
Vidya Balan, John Abraham, Govinda, Shannon Esrechowitz,
Priyanka Chopra, Salman Khan, Akshaye Khanna, Ayesha Takia,
Sohail Khan, Isha Koppikar, Anil Kapoor and Juhi Chawla. The
movie's producer is Aditya Chopra while the music is by
Shankar Mahadevan, Ehsaan Noorani and Loy Mendonca and the
lyrics are by Sameer.
other release is Guru which is about a man who starts out in
life with very little success and power and how he becomes a
successful business- man while also winning the heart of his
cast includes Abhishek Bachchan, Aishwarya Rai, Mithun
Chakraborty, R. Madhavan, Vidya Balan, Arya Babbar, Roshan
Seth, Mallika Sherawat and the movie was directed by Mani
Ratnam while the producer was Aditya Chopra.
story is by Mani Ratnam and Vijay Krishna Acharya while the
music is by A.R.Rahman and the lyrics are by Sameer.
us to save our mother for we cannot let her go away'
Aluthgamage, The doctor's letter about the illness,
Thushari Damayanthi and Janaka Saman Kumara
the greatest blessings to children. They love their children
unconditionally. They leave no stone unturned to get a sick
return when a mother falls sick it is the bounden duty of the
children to take care of her.
Saman Kumara and Thushari Damayanthi of Kaduwela are two such
children who are working hard to help their beloved mother who
needs to undergo an urgent Coronary Angioplasty with Stenting
to correct two valves in her heart.
Aluthgamage is suffering from a severe heart disease for the
last one year although it was detected by the doctors only a
few weeks ago. She has been advised to undergo an urgent
angioplasty procedure to widen up the congested veins to save
her life by
consultant cardiologist, Sri Jayewardanapura General
Hospital, Dr. Gotabhaya Ranasinghe.
procedure is to be performed at the Nawaloka Hospital and the
total package for the operation will be Rs.570, 000, which
amount the children of this lady are unable to foot.
to Janaka Saman, her son
the total package for the procedure that includes Stent
and room charges have to be paid on admission. Since it is not
an open heart surgery the patient has to be in hospital for
three days, and any overstay above the package dates will be
from this treatment, any charge that may become payable for
treatment of any side effects that is not related to the
cardiac procedure and professional charges has to be paid by
children have applied to the President's Fund to obtain
financial assistance but still have not received any
a coronary angiogram test on January 10 we were asked to get
ready for a angioplasty procedure within two months to save
our mother's life. Although we wrote to the President's Fund
we did not get a reply still. My father is a carpenter and
even he underwent a serious operation a few months ago after
an accident. He is still recuperating and is unable to help us
to collect money," the dejected son told The Sunday
to the two children it is difficult for them to have a square
meal, as they want to save every single cent they earn to save
the life of their loving mother. "What we want right now
is to find money to save my precious mother's life. Nothing
else is there in our minds. As long as we could find money to
save our mother we are ready to sacrifice anything in our
life," added Thushari innocently.
to these children, since they are not in a position to afford
a private hospital they had gone to the Colombo General
Hospital to get a date for the procedure but has received a
date in 2008 which is too far away for them.
advised by the doctor
the procedure has to be carried out within two months
so we decided to get it done at Nawaloka Hospital with
contributions from well-wishers. Even Dr. Ranasinghe knows
that we are not ready immediately for the procedure and he
wanted us to collect the needed funds as soon as possible and
to inform him so he could give an early date for the
total amount includes Rs. 4 lakhs for the two stents and
hospital charges of
Rs. 175,000. Apart from this we were asked to keep
extra money to pay for any extra treatment if necessary that
is not included in the package," added Janaka
who contribute even in a small way to give a ray of
hope to these helpless and innocent young children
would certainly be the ones who know the value of a
out to battered women
and abuse against women
from all walks of life are increasing although these issues
are being discussed openly.
wives, sisters, daughters have now become vulnerable
home - at the hands of their own husbands, children and
brothers. They are subjected to physical, sexual, emotional,
psychological, social and economical abuse.
has now come to light that domestic violence is more prevalent
than ever and it completely robs the victim of
self-esteem and could be life threatening as well.
violence is reported from all over the country but when it
comes to sexual abuse it has shown a rapid growth during the
past few decades and has become a threat to
society. Unlike the old days when family values meant
everything, today husbands, boyfriends, fathers, brothers,
uncles or sons target their own kith and kin be it adults or
young girls to satiate their sexual appetite. Sexual abuse
could vary from rape, physically attacking a woman or a
child's sexual body parts or preventing the victim from using
birth control or safe sex practices.
and psychological abuse could vary from punching, slapping,
beating and shoving to life threats, emotional injuries and
humiliation. Humiliating the victim in front of
others is a common way of physical and psychological
abuse in society.
as a form of abuse can be described as making women afraid
through looks, action and gestures or by destroying their
using privilege to control is also another form of abuse.
Treating a woman like a servant and giving instructions that
could change the life of an individual is part of using
privilege to control
the other forcefully.
who are subjected to abuse experience a sense of hopelessness,
they feel worthless, are failures
and they are frightened and always
ashamed while they are emotionally strained.
(WIN), a Sri Lankan non-governmental organisation that was
established in 1987 provides counseling and legal assistance
specifically to women and children who are subjected to rape,
domestic violence, incest, sexual abuse and sexual harassment.
Coordinator, WIN Dilrukshi de Alwis told The Sunday Leader
that following the introduction of
the Domestic Violence Act in October 2006 legal action
could be taken against those who commit any form of abuse.WIN
keeps an eye on such battered women round the clock to help
them when ever they need help.
who seek assistance from WIN are provided with counselling and
options for their future. We also talk to the abuser to assure
that this would not be repeated in future. According to our
statistics nearly 65% of battering has reduced, as the abusers
know that they are under scrutiny by WIN. For self esteem the
abuser in most cases refrains from such activities.
There are a few reported cases that the partners change
their attitudes completely. Although battered women receive
counselling and free legal advices they are determined to stay
in a non threatening environment without any pressure from the
abuser," claimed De Alwis.
to De Alwis if one is an abused woman it is important to
consider the options carefully.
No one else can tell you what is best for you. The
effort to reach out and to take action has to come from within
do not have to change everything overnight. If you decide that
you need help from councillors or someone who is sympathetic
to your situation you could take their advice as well. They
cannot make the decisions for you but may assist in sorting
through your thoughts. Find your strength and learn new
options. Never neglect your safety. You have the capability of
making correct decisions. Stand by them.
matter how desperate your situation may appear to be, suicide
is not the answer. Do not keep emotions bottled up within you.
no to domestic violence, as it is a violation of human rights.
It is an offence and punishable according to the Domestic
Violence Act of 2006.
Sunday Leader spoke to two battered women and this is what
they had to say of their nightmare.
abused speak out...
Sugathadasa* (25years - Moratuwa)
husband physically and
sexually harasses me since I
married him four years ago. I always believed
that love marriages will live long but only realised
that they are made in hell. I was happy only for one
week since then I was physically and sexually harassed
by my husband which is unbearable.
our friendship of six long years before marriage I
thought that he was the best boyfriend in the world. He
loved me very much and since my family was opposed to
our affair and had placed restrictions to meet him he
always met me with the greatest difficulty and bought me
I wanted. Then he was a father figure to me and I
always considered that I was the luckiest person in the
was a hard earner and had money to give a comfortable
life to me but everything changed after
marriage because of his addiction to alcohol.
First he started to abuse me after a few drinks but
little by little he later started to bring his
"alcoholic friends" to our house and they
behaved like animals.
I knew who these friends were and I requested my husband
not to entertain them at our house. As all the money
that was earned started draining off because of regular
alcoholic parties, as a remedy my very own husband
wanted me to sell my body to his 'alcoholic
friends' to which
started from there on and
I was four months pregnant but still his friends
did not spare me. I have been physically and sexually
harassed every single day. At one point I wanted to
commit suicide, as I didn't have any close associate to
lean on but had to change that idea and faced
life. Now my child is three years but the sexual
harassment and domestic violence never decreases instead
it increases every
day. My advice to the younger generation is to
think twice before you make any decision in your life.
Men know to act in a very pleasant way but their inner
attitudes are completely different.
there are institutions to solve such problems how can I
relate my story to them for I feel ashamed of my self to
reveal all these to such places.
Samaranayake* (36 years - Kalutara)
who is from a well to do
family told The Sunday Leader that her
mother-in-law ruined their happy family life. According
to Sujatha her husband is the eldest
of three siblings and since her father-in-law's
death her mother-in-law had come to stay with them.
was I who did the mistake by bringing her down to our
residence. Since I was alone with my child when my
husband was away in office I thought that she would be
the ideal companion for me. Since I too didn't have my
mother around I treated her as
my own mother.
a couple of months I noticed a sudden change of my
husband and I did not take it so seriously as I thought
it was due to pressure of office work. But one night I
downstairs to bring water to my child and then I
heard my mother-in-law telling all sorts of fabricated
stories to my husband. Then only I realised what was
really going on and everything went from bad to worse
after a couple of months.
husband started assaulting me and even my child became
so restless when such things were happening. Once he
returned home under the influence of liquor and cut my
long hair and assaulted me till I was unconscious. When
I regained consciousness I realised that I could not
move my left hand and there
was a fracture above my wrist due to the assault.
I was raised in a respectable family I did not want to
complain to the police although my friends requested me
to do so. Because of my daughter I did not want to go
for a separation but lived under the same roof
separately. Bad became worse and one night he came to
kill my child and me and I
managed to escape from that hell hole and now I
am divorced and live with my daughter in a distant place
where my husband cannot find us.
Names changed to protect identity
hidden tears of Jonathan
Jonathan is a 28
year old handsome young man from Nawinna, Maharagama, who has
hopes and dreams like any other youngster of his age group. He
is a bachelor who leads a normal life with laughter and tears
as part of his life, just as it would be in the life of any
other human being. But, the tears shed by Jonathan are tears
that are not shed in the presence of others. They are 'silent
tears.' It is quite natural for Jonathan to feel sad, deep
inside, even though he does not show his pain to the outer
world. Apart from the visible swelling on the lower right
portion of his well-featured face, Jonathan has no other
issues, health wise. But this very swelling has been the
reason for Jonathan to build up hope and to never give up, no
matter what life may have in store.
was born with a swelling
on his face. However, it did not gain the attention of anyone
until Jonathan was four or five years. In fact, there haven't
been any unusual signs on his face during the early years.
Jonathan turned 12
sporting a somewhat visible swelling, the wife of his
forced him to gain the assistance of a doctor. With her
help, Jonathan initially channelled Dental Surgeon Dr. Reggie
Goonatilake, thinking that the swelling was due to a dental
issue. However, when Dr. Goonatilake realised that it had
his teeth, he referred Jonathan to Vascular Surgeon Dr.
tried to get an 'angiogram' done, but during this time, there
was a strike going on
and the test got delayed. I was about 16 years old at
the time. The swelling on my face continued to grow, but
according to doctors, the growth had stopped. However, doctors
say that it can grow once again," Jonathan told The
passed by, tests, and more tests were done, but there was no
or cure for Jonathan's problem. Finally, Jonathan was
diagnosed with 'A/V Malformation' of his lingual and maxillary
arteries. Jonathan and his family has been exploring places
outside Sri Lanka, such as Australia, in order to conduct an
operation to remove the malformation, as it was confirmed that
Sri Lanka did not have facilities to conduct such an
has some consolation, because under any circumstances, he has
an understanding and loving family right beside him. His
father Eric Vandendriesen, mother Anne, elder brother Eric
Daniel and younger sister Evangeline had been with Jonathan
through thick and thin. "In fact, it was my family who
had always been there for me and it was they who did not let
me give up hope and helped me immensely to pick up courage and
to never lose hope. Their love for me is unconditional,"
Jonathan said gratefully.
College, Colombo being his alma mater, Jonathan had always had
supportive teachers throughout his school career. "I was
living with this health issue, so I did not feel much about
it. It was there from my birth, so it was quite normal to me,
but during my school career, the only regret I had was not
being able to take part in any outdoor activities. It was due
to the heavy blood flow in the swollen area on my face and if
I got an injury on the swelling, I could have bled to death.
The bleeding would have never stopped and it was a serious
matter, so I had to keep away from sports and other
activities," he said, the sadness unmistakable.
who is a
talented artist, was not in favour of mathematics and science,
school days. At present, Jonathan serves as a
technician at 'Hal Computers' and had been employed since
1998, right after completing his O/L. Being involved with work
helps him deviate his mind from the issue, which otherwise
would disturb his mind constantly.
Jonathan has not given up hope and with the support and
encouragement of his family and friends, a sum of Rs.900,000
has been raised towards the operation, which has to be done in
four to six stages. Yet, there is a shortage of Rs.1.1
is a time that Jonathan, a talented young individual is in
need and 'friends in need are friends indeed,' so it is up to
those who feel another's pain
who have a chance of contributing towards this worthy
estimate was obtained from the Radiology Department of
Alfred Hospital in Melbourne, Australia. Also, the whole
malformation cannot be treated in one visit, as this
would cause severe tissue damage to the skin, muscles
and nerves in Jonathan's face. Therefore, it has to be
treated over a six-month period at monthly intervals.
Four to six operations have to be done and the costs for
the surgery are as follows (in Australian Dollars);-
day surgery Bed
cost for one surgery
am very concerned about the
prevalence of endemic kidney disease in the North Central and
Central Province of Sri Lanka, said Professor Georgi Abraham
of the Sri Ramachandra Medical College Hospital, Chennai. This
world renowned nephrologist was in Sri Lanka last week.
Georgi Abraham who is both physician and friend to hundreds of
patients with complications of the kidneys is the chairman of
the Commission for Global Advancement in Nephrology for South
Asia and also the chairman of the International Society of
at length about the prevalence of kidney disease he went on to
say that this prevalance on a significant scale borders on
mysterious reasons. "I have observed that people working
on the paddy fields do not have high blood pressure or
diabetes, but progressive kidney failure and death in several
cases is cause for concern," said Professor Georgi
there is much concern about this section of the population -
from regions such as Anuradhapura, Polonnaruwa upto Kurunegala
where thousands of people are reportedly affected. Professor
Georgi Abraham drew light to questions as to whether it is due
to toxic substances in the water they drink, in
their food or whether there is a genetic susceptibility they
have developed over a period of time.
Georgi Abraham who spoke glowingly about the Sri Lankan
nephrologists said that together with the help of the
International Society of Nephrologists, this endemic problem
will be studied and managed.
advise to all, Professor Abraham said that it is the
incidence of diabetes and diabetic kidney failure that
is cause for concern. "I see a shortage of trained kidney
specialists in Sri Lanka," observed Professor Abraham,
drawing light to the migration factor. "The Sri Lankan
Soceity of Nephrologists under Dr. Chula Herath and Dr. Nasser
is trying its best to train more and more kidney specialists
and keep them.
we detect it at an early stage, kidney failure can be fatal.
It is important that one checks his blood pressure and ensure
that it is approximately 130/80. Ensure that urine is screened
for albumen leaks. These tests cost little, but can help save
lives," observed the doctor.
is also important that one checks his blood sugar after an
overnight fast. Ideally it ought to be 110-126 mg. These
simple tests will help to detect complications early - before
they turn to progressive terminal kidney failure and also
prevent dialysis or transplantation," pointed out this
authority on kidney care.
Georgi Abraham went on to say that a healthy lifestyle with
proper exercise and absolute abstinence from smoking will
ensure good health with normal blood pressure and blood sugar.
individuals drink about two to three litres of water a day.
But this has to be increased if one is exercising heavily or
is working outdoors in humid weather conditions.
light to WASH, Professor Abraham said that it is means World
Action on Salt-intake and Hypertension (high blood pressure).
"Take less salt so that the blood pressure tends to
be low and one will not develop hypertension. A low
consumption of salt will ensure normal blood pressure.
8 is celebrated the world over as World Kidney Day. The
purpose of this is to make people aware of kidney disease.
There are different programmes all over the world to make
people aware of kidney disease, and there are prevention
programmes so that early detection is ensured," explained
rice we eat has 78% carbohydrate, chappatis are 72%
carbohydrate and sugar is 99% carbohydrate. We keep on
consuming more and more carbohydrate everyday and we put in
fat too. Thus there is the danger of high blood pressure and
diabetes lurking," pointed out Professor Abraham.
"What we ought to eat is lots of fibre - fresh vegetables
(not potato) and fresh fruit for potassium," he said.
at length of medical conditions and medicine, Professor
Abraham said that the need in Sri Lanka is for more generic
medicine. "Generic medicine is cheaper, yet is equivalent
to their expensive brand names," pointed out the doctor.
fruit juice is as good as eating
for years believed that fruit and vegetable juice does not
have the same health benefits as
their whole fruit counterparts.
a study conducted by British nutrition researchers challenges
this view and argues that 100 per cent juice extracts could be
just as effective in reducing the risk of some cancers and
report, published in the International Journal of Food Science
and Nutrition, analysed a variety of studies that looked into
the effects of both fibre and antioxidants.
claims the positive impact fruits and vegetables offer comes
not from just the fibre, but also from the antioxidants, which
are present in both the juice as well as the whole fruit and
considering cancer and coronary heart disease prevention,
there is no evidence that pure fruit and vegetable juices are
less beneficial than whole fruit and vegetables," the
that maintain pure fruit and vegetable juices are
nutritionally inferior are unjustified,"the study
concluded, adding that those policies should be
Taylor, of the US-based Juice Products Association, said the
study "goes a long way in demonstrating that fruit and
vegetable juices do play an important role in reducing the
risk of various diseases, especially cancer and cardiovascular
who was not associated with the research, also pointed to an
earlier study published in the US Journal of Medicine, which
found that consumption of fruit juice led to a reduction in
the risk of developing Alzheimer's disease.
Sharon Natoli, director of Food and Nutrition Australia, told
The Australian that although juices "might be
helpful" in some types of disease prevention, they were
no substitute for whole fruits and vegetables when it came to
reducing the risks associated with diseases such as bowel
of the things often missing from juices is fibre, which
assists in the prevention of bowel cancer and can help reduce
cholesterol," said Natoli.
certainly would not replace all your daily servings of whole
fruit and vegetables with juice.
is also a more concentrated source of sugar, so it's going to
give you more kilojoules than whole vegetables and
health authorities in some countries of the western world have
recomm-ended that individ-uals
consume at least five servings of vegetables and at
least two servings of fruit daily.
was carefree then
is so complex! You might go to sleep
in the night thinking you are somebody and wake up the next
morning and find out you are nobody. Agreements are signed and
then declared null and void. Life is a never-ending circus
here, with plenty of clowns to entertain us. The sad thing in
the midst of this chaos is that we are moving backwards. It's
the same kind of hopelessness felt like when your good friend
is ill and no one can find out what's wrong with her. You can
watch helplessly and not be able to do a thing to change the
just called and agreed, compared to our carefree schooldays.
Little things in life are the best. Everything was a special
treat. Of course, I must say, we added a lot of spice and
colour to any given situation! The same things would be a big
yawn to our children.
reminisced about this particular outing to celebrate one of
our birthdays. We were going to spend the day at the zoo. We
were all in our teens. Since none of the boys we were going
with owned a car, or else their parents wouldn't allow them to
drive, we had to take a bus.
didn't have the money to go in several taxis, you see. The
girls decided to meet early at one of our homes to help
prepare the picnic lunch. When we arrived there, the birthday
girl was fuming since her mum hadn't prepared the prawn paste
that she had specifically asked for as one of the sandwich
had to pacify her and convince her that the sandwiches would
be quite adequate with the other fillings. My friend unearthed
something from her mum's freezer and announced that we could
use that instead. She was somewhat mollified after that.
with a lot of giggling, tasting, criticising and bumping into
each other, we made quite a satisfying looking mountain of
sandwiches. Bananas and milk toffees were our dessert. We
assured Birthday Girl that our drinking would be kept to a
minimum so we wouldn't have to use the toilet, (it being
rather disgusting) and told her if the drinks ran out, the
boys would jolly well have to buy more if they needed it.
had brought a cake and some biscuits along for tea. Disposable
paper cups, plates, napkins and even a toilet roll were
stuffed in for emergencies. We divided everything into
shoulder bags, and decided to assign them to the boys!
boys were very good, well brought up, quiet and the shy type.
We had adorned ourselves with hats and sunglasses, halter
t-shirts and jeans. (We were slim then!) When they arrived,
you could see them eyeing us in horror, imagining dire
consequences on being merely spotted with us. They stood very
far away from us at the bus stop. We wanted to ride on the top
of the double-decker bus, naturally, and again, they kept
their distance. They kept telling us to be quiet and not
shout. We were just talking.
trend continued at the zoo as well, and finally we told BG off
severely, asking why her cousins were such drags. They did not
appreciate our brand of humour. They just wouldn't loosen up!
the zoo closed at six, we decided to go to a movie after that.
On the way back, we sang at the top of our voices, with the
Goodie Gumdrops entreating us to please not disgrace them any
more. Didn't we know how to behave in public?
they threatened not to come to the movie. We had to compromise
hastily, as the two brothers lived just by the cinema and we
had to pop in to their house to freshen up for the movie. It
was a horror movie, and even before the main film started, we
were screaming out loud, as they showed us the trailers of
other films that were going to be shown in the future.
again, the Goodie Gumdrops retreated in horror! They muttered
under their breaths and whispered to one another. We now had a
legitimate excuse to shout and scream! Sometimes we screamed
before anyone else in the theatre and people around sniggered,
to G.G's embarrassment. They refused to ever come out with us
anywhere again, and one of them ignored me for years! Never
mind, we had a super scream of a day!
Honky Tonk Woman
be or not to be...
Australia Day this year, I became an Australian
citizen. I am still a Sri Lankan one, but now I am a citizen
of the Land of Oz as well. People keep asking me what it feels
like to be an Australian citizen now. Well, Toto, we ain't in
It's a sense of resignation because honestly I have
enough situations in my life that give me bipolar disorders
and I really don't need something else. Especially something
else more concrete and defined as part of my identity.
may think it's strange to go on and on about this identity
crisis - but the truth is we all are living in a state of
perpetual identity crisis. We are never happy about who we are
- we want to be more than who we are and so life works on the
basis that we keep trying to be different than what we
perceive ourselves to be or we try to hold onto a certain part
of our identity and protect it fiercely.
you are wondering what I mean - take a look around. Products
are marketed to you with promises that it will make you
sexier, prettier, smarter, stronger and the list goes on. And
we buy these things because we accept those promises and we
say something about ourselves every time we do. And then we
also defend ourselves and parts of our identity that we deem
precious. And sometimes that leads to consequences like war.
fight others because they see the other person as a threat to
their sense of identity - sometimes their identity to them is
tied up in traditions or in their way of life or in something
they wear or how they speak or who they choose to worship or
how they choose to behave. And for years this has been at the
center of a push and pull struggle between the 'East' and the
'West' from before the time the Romans were struggling to keep
their empire together against the Arabs and the Goth raiders
to the current wars and trouble in the Middle East.
it isn't just East and West - East and East and West and West.
Chinese and Japanese fought the Manchurian War and our own
back garden has a civil war going on. War is an unpleasant
thing but it is not inhuman. Far from it. As long as there
have been humans forming groups and thinking about identity,
collective or individual, there have been wars, battless, and
violence. Humans are insecure by nature and perhaps that's
because we somehow know that nature has no favourites and that
we need to somehow survive.
that's the best thing about having an identity crisis. If you
don't know which identity to choose - which hat to wear when -
then you can stay out of the fracas when it arises. Violence
leads to death and eventually - war being such an unpleasant
thing and all - perhaps the only people left will be those
dealing with identity crises. Perhaps only the confused will
all, as someone else put it: "You now have two countries
to worry about." She is right. I do.
need to be free
may not choose where you are born but when all is said and
done when you become a citizen of a country by birth or
otherwise - you take on everything that country means. You
become responsible for everything that nation has done as a
nation. I am responsible for the current governments for two
countries, I am responsible for what they do for as stated in
both constitutions, whatever they do is done in the people's
interests. So when they do something I do not agree with, I
have to voice opinion.
I have to petition and I have to vote - I have to
register my disagreement and absolve myself of any
responsiblity for that particular action they have taken on my
while you have those options in the future, you don't have the
option of registering your disapproval or disagreement of what
occurred in the past.
became a citizen because I needed to be free to return both to
where I was born and where I currently live. Nowadays there
are restrictions on where you can go if you are from a certain
part of the world. I am not the kind of person who can stay in
one place for too long - if you cannot tell already, I have
become disillusioned too. And while I wouldn't like to
subscribe to fitting into identities, like anyone else I am
trapped by it.
if you are still wondering why I opted for dual citizenship in
two countries I see both good and bad in, I did so because I
need to be free enough to see those that I love who are
seperated from me by circumstance.
am not a Sri Lankan or an Australian or both, I am not
Sinhalese or Burgher or a mishmash of the two, or traditional
or Westernised - I am a woman who loves her family and her
friends very much and misses them immensely who will always
have room to add more to the list. That's my identity - that's
who I am.
who I am always going to be.