Shakespearean Work and Common Mental Disorders

william_shakespeare

Every normal person, in fact, is only normal on the average. His ego approximates to that of the psychotic in some part or other and to a greater or lesser extent.

Sigmund Freud

Dr Ruwan m Jayatunge MD – rumj@sltnet.lk

The eminent English poet and playwright William Shakespeare created many characters that appear to be afflicted by psychological and psychiatric disorders. Shakespeare had an exclusive ability to grasp the dynamics of the human mind and fathom the dysfunctions of the human psyche. Indeed Shakespeare was very comprehensible in his descriptions of various psychological and psychiatric symptoms. Shakespeare’s influence on psychopathology was immeasurable. Many of Shakespeare’s lead characters seem to be having mental disorders and even psychoses.

William Shakespeare’s work confers a wide range of human mental conditions including psychopathology. There are many Shakespearean characters show numerous criteria for mental disorders that is discussed in DSM 4(Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, a manual published by the American Psychiatric Association that covers all mental health disorders for both children and adults) and the ICD 10 (The International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems classified by the WHO) (more…)

Two Russian Romantic Poets who shared a Common Fate

Dr Ruwan M Jayatunge MD – rumj@sltnet.lk

Alexander Pushkin and Mikhail Lermontov were Great Russian romantic poets who lived in the 19th century. They knew each other and adored each other’s work. Both were rebellious in nature. Alexander Pushkin was the pioneer of Russian literature. Among his major works Ruslan and Ludmila , Evgenii Onegin, and Boris Godunov can be considered as the greatest masterpiece of Russian literature. Although Pushkin was a genius in literature the Russian Czar did not tolerate his poems which carried the elements of protests. Pushkin was a daring activist who secretly involved with an underground revolutionary group and also publicly expressed his supported for the Decembrist uprising which demeaned feudal reforms. As result of his rebellious attitude Pushkin was banished from St Petersburg.

In 1827 he composed the ode titled The Poet

Until he hears Apollo’s call
To make a hallowed sacrifice,
A Poet lives in feeble thrall
To people’s empty vanities;
And silent is his sacred lyre,
His soul partakes of chilly sleep,
And of the world’s unworthy sons
He is, perhaps, the very least.

Pushkin knew the suffering of the peasants under the Czar’s regime. As a member of the upper Russian social class Pushkin was never fascinated by its glory. He had a mission in his life. Pushkin often used his writing to express the agony and suppression of the Russian people. Hence he was hated by the regime. But the general public recognized Pushkin as a great poet and respected him. Gradually he became the envy of the Royal Palace. (more…)

Vladimir Vysotsky the Russian Bob Dylan

Dr Ruwan M Jayatunge MD

I still recall the words of one of my teachers Mr. Vethali Ivanovich who introduced me to the songs of Vladimir Vysotsky in 1986. He said “if you want to learn the Russian soul listen to Vysotsky” A poet, songwriter and actor, Vladimir Vysotsky was the most famous Russian bard. He is adored by millions of Russians today.

Vladimir Vysotsky, who began performing in the 1960s, was quite critical of the regime, highlighting bureaucracy criticizing the unfair privileges of the elite and objecting the repression. His lyrics took position on the Soviet status quo. But he loved his country and he was a true Russian. Vladimir Vysotsky could be considered as the Russian Bob Dylan. He was the voice of the silent generation of the Soviet Union. (more…)

John Lennon: Music, Philosophy and Mission

Dr. Ruwan M JayatungeM.D.

My role in society, or any artist’s or poet’s role, is to try and express what we all feel. Not to tell people how to feel. Not as a preacher, not as a leader, but as a reflection of us all.”
John Lennon

John Lennon who was an inspirational character changed music in to a new direction. He was one of the key figures in the Post War generation whose music and the ideology changed the world. Lennon was a humanitarian. He condemned violence and truthfully worked for peace. John Lennon’s music, philosophy and mission is still adored by millions of people. He is an immortal in people’s hearts. (more…)

Who is Bathiya & Santhush ?

bns

Bathiya and Santhush (BNS) are Sri Lanka’s most accomplished musical duo in the field of ethnic fusion music. In the last 5 years the duo have secured over 350 live performances, a music publishing contract with Universal Music, a recording contract with SONY BMG Music Entertainment / M entertainment and released 3 platinum albums.

Since their inception in 1998, the duo have achieved fourteen entries in the Sri Lankan music charts along with 7 number-one singles. Their single Siri Sangabodhi Maligawedi off the album Life was the the first ever multilingual [English and Singhalese] hit to be played on English Radio after 3 decades. The latest album Neththara released in 2005 sold up to 75,000 copies in just 5 months. The album has been ranked as one of the highest selling Sony Music releases in Sri Lanka. (more…)

Rukmani Devi

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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Rukmani Devi was born as Daisy Daniels on January 15, 1923. W. R. Daniels who was manager of the Observer for many years, claiming to be a kinsman of Rukmani Devi told that she was born at Inuvil in Jaffna and that her parents were Mr. and Mrs. Daniels of Inuvil and was named Daisy Daniels. At the age of seven she was picked to sing Christmas carols. Watching her ability to sing, dance, also to act, she was selected to perform a main part in a Christmas play, “The Cobler’s Wife”.

The stage play was trained and presented by St. Clare’s School, Wellawatte. Then at the age of just 12 years she was picked to perform the stage play, “Ramayanaya” presented by ‘Sinhala Natya Sabha’. Since her performances were highly appreciated by the packed audience, well-known dramatist Dick Dias selected her to act in two of his stage plays, “Jana Kiharanaya” and “Mayawathie”. In 1936 her first recording of famous song “Siri Buddhagaya Vihare” with Master H. W. Rupasinghe brought her fortune. She captured the hearts of the masses. (more…)

Napoleon Bonaparte the Man of Destiny

God is on the side of the big guns.” Napoleon Bonaparte

Napoleon Bonaparte was a mystic man who will always remain as a riddle for his role in the human history. Born to a financially ruined Corsican aristocratic family Napoleon was destined to conquer and rule. He became famous for his military tactics and made the French Army as one of the finest military machines in Europe. His glory had no boundaries. Other European nations were feared when they heard his name. He was pompous, arrogant and controversial.

Napoleon Bonaparte’s father who had a far thinking mind was able to preserve a place for young Napoleon in the Royal Military College in Paris. His contemporary cadets described Napoleon as a quite and a solitary lad who could hardly speak French. But he was proud and ambitious. (more…)

The Origin of Life in the Universe: Buddhist Perspective

Dr Ruwan M JayatungeM.D. – drrumj@gmail.com

‘There is no reason to suppose that the world had a beginning at all. The idea that things must have a beginning is really due to the poverty of our thoughts.’

Bertrand Russell

The origin of life has been a subject of speculation in all known cultures. In the modern era, this question has been considered in terms of a scientific framework. Lord Buddha’s’ explanation of the origin of the Universe, compatible with the modern scientific explanation. Buddha described the origin of the Universe and life in the Aganna Sutta 2500 years ago. According to Buddha’s explanation the universe being destroyed and then re-evolving into its present form over a period of millions of years. The Buddha did not believe in the existence of a supreme god or creator of the universe. The Lord Buddha presented a model of cosmology wherein the universe expands and contracts over extremely long periods of time, this description has been found by some to be consistent with the expanding universe model and Big Bang. The Buddha explained that the universe expands outward, reaches a stabilizing point, and then reverts its motion back toward a central point resulting in its destruction, this process again to be repeated infinitely. (more…)

Importance of having Breakfast

Breakfast can help prevent strokes, heart attack and sudden death. Advice on not to skip breakfast!

Healthy living

For those who always skip breakfast, you should stop that habit now! You’ve heard many times that “Breakfast is the most important meal of the day.” Now, recent research confirms that one of the worst practices you can develop may be avoiding breakfast.

Why?

heart
Because the frequency of heart attack, sudden death, and stroke peaks between 6: 00a.m. and noon, with the highest incidence being
between 8: 00a.m. and 10:00a.m.What mechanism within the body could account for this significant jump in sudden death in the early
morning hours? (more…)

Why keep a diary?

Sunday Observer – by Chamitha Kuruppu

My dear neighbour, who just got rid of a pile of unused diaries makes sure that everyone down our lane will get her a new diary for 2006. “It’s very useful, you know” she tells everyone. The lady is very specific about her requirements – she wants Mr. Perera to get her an executive diary and Mrs. Samaranayake is busy looking for an organiser while I have already given her a pocket diary.

“It’s just a diary, why do you dislike her so much,” asks my husband. The problem is why she needs so many. She says she gives them to the postman, taxi driver, paperman, etc. But the fact remains that over 25 unused diaries will be piled safely on her bookshelf throughout the year. (more…)