Kunta Kinte to Barak Obama

Dr Ruwan M Jayatunge

Alex Haley the Pulitzer Prize winning author best known for his outstanding historical novel Roots tells the story of 39 million Americans of African descent. Kunta Kinte who was the central character of his 1976 book believed to be born in 1750 in Gambia West Africa and caught by a slave trader when Kunta Kinte was just 17 years old. He was taken to America (Maryland) by the ship Lord Ligonier in 1767. Worked as a slave undergoing many inhuman experiences Kunta Kinte died in 1810 without seeing freedom. Kunta’s generation lived in America until they searched for a new identity and freedom.

The American author Harriet Beecher Stowe’s novel Uncle Tom’s Cabin which was published in 1852 had profound effects on the attitude towards slavery in the United States. Many moderate Americans felt that the slavery was evil. The American Civil War erupted mainly due to the slavery issue. President Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation in 1862 and declared the freedom of all slaves in any state of the Confederate States of America.

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Vision of Milinda Moragoda



Below is the platform on which I worked as a Member of Parliament and Minister:

I stand for a political system in Sri Lanka which is free of corruption and where politicians serve all the people rather than the other way around.

I want an end to the cycle of violence and hatred.

I am working for free and fair elections where the people of Sri Lanka can vote for the Party of their choice without fear of intimidation or violence.

I want to see our institutions free from political control. A free Police, Judiciary and Elections Commission which carry out their duties professionally and without favour.

The 21st Century will be based on a knowledge economy where human resources count. This gives Sri Lanka the opportunity for a fresh start. Through my job bank, English and IT classes, I am working to help our people. I am also working towards an education system – free for all – and where our children are given the skills to go out in to the world and compete with the best.

We have the best entrepreneurs and the best brains. I want Sri Lanka to open its doors to the world, let us compete with them and make ours a strong economy

I am working to build an infrastructure with good roads to every part of the island, a modern and efficient railway system and more ports from which we can export our produce.

I am working to free our businesses of red tape and to encourage inward investment, especially where it is in partnership with Sri Lankans.

I want to see an end to the war in the north and east. Neither Sinhalese nor Tamil benefit. I am working towards a peaceful settlement to this conflict.

I am working to strengthen our traditional industries such as farming, fishing, tea and garments. But we need to bring in the new industries of a ‘knowledge economy’. That means re-training our youth in computer skills. I want to see a more flexible and responsive higher education system where ‘distance learning’ is encouraged.

In such a strong economy there will always be people who cannot compete and will lose out. I want to provide a safety net for these people in the form of a quality social services system.

Women are the most dynamic part of our society and yet their contribution is rarely recognised. I will work to see that women are given the recognition and their rightful place in our society.

Source: Milinda.org

The Concept of Nirvana From a Psychological Point of View

Written and compiled by Dr. Ruwan M Jayatunge M.D. – rumj@sltnet.lk

The concept of Nirvana is more than 2500 years old. Throughout the centuries various scholars and philosophers tried to explain this concept using their limited knowledge. In fact the concept of Nirvana is much more wide and difficult to explain in mundane terms. The Nirvana concept is often misunderstood and sometimes misused ( eg – Nirvana Rock Band, Nirvana Night Club) in the western world. Some Western scholars have tried to interpret it as a sensational feeling or like orgasm which was incorrect.

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