Saturday, 16 February 2019

Siya and I - First Meeting

After the first section of the professor's lecture came to the end, I entered the room of the lecturers near the door of the auditorium, with the other students following me. Professor Mulryne, who was delivering the lecture, was chatting with a student and several other faculty members. Those who were studying for a Master’s degree - some for a PhD - were sitting in this large room reading or doing some physics questions. Some came here to drink water, buy a cup of coffee or a cup of tea. Many students came to discuss how to answer difficult physics questions here.

I bought a cup of tea from the machine and stood near to the window to drink it. It was in that moment that felt a pair of eyes on me - the eyes of a beautiful South Asian-looking woman. I smiled at her and flipped through the pages of a ‘physicsworld’ magazine on the table. She walked towards me with a warm smile on her face and in no time at all, she was standing near me and bending over the magazine.

"Do you have any relationship to the country (…)?" she mentioned a name of a south Asian country.

"No, I was born in Sri Lanka and live here now, though many people have asked if I was from that country. Perhaps I look like one of them," I said. "I take it you are from that country?”

"Yes, I am.”

 “Aren't there many people from (…) around this area?"

A significant number of people from the country in question had been living in this area of London (where our university was situated) for several decades. Perhaps it was because of that that I had seen many descendants of families who had emigrated from that country as students in this university.

"Yes, you’re right,” she replied. “Did you started the degree last year?"

"Yes – it's quite difficult but I wanted to; I love the subject. I did the level of higher maths needed for the course almost fifteen years ago."

"Do you still remember it? I graduated with a maths degree almost two years ago and I’ve already forgotten what I did." She laughed.

"I have been downloading the open university BSc mathematics courses – they were available online for free. After completing them, I was fine, though I have to admit, my mathematical knowledge was good in those days.”

"Then I can ask for your help?" she winked at me. I was surprised by her direct approach. The country she came from was strictly religious and known to ‘discipline’ women harshly.

"No problem," I replied, and started walking back into the auditorium for the rest of the lecture. That was the first time we met.

I went to lectures again next Thursday. She arrived to the lecture late. She had a beautiful smile on her face when she sat next to me and during the break, we chatted a lot. I learned that she had come to England many years ago and obtained her first Honors Degree for mathematics. After both lectures scheduled for the day finished, we came out of the auditorium together.

"Which way are you going now?" I asked.

"I have to take the 102 bus to Bethnal Green. You?"

"I came by car. Normally I travel by tube but I missed the train this morning. I parked my car at the next block on the other side of the road. If you want, I can give you a lift." I offered.

"That's okay. I’ll go by bus, but we can walk together to your car," she said as we stepped out through the university gate.

‘What is she trying to do?’ The question was spinning through my mind.

When we were outside, as we were walking and crossing the road, I noticed a kind of restlessness in her and a sense that she was trying to hide from other people. At first, I thought it was because she was a Muslim girl and felt shy. However, when I thought back to how straightforward she was on the day I first met her, I realised that that might not be the reason.

She glanced left and right once and suddenly started walking very fast. I was shocked at the speed she was walking – it was as if someone was chasing her.

During next few weeks, she’d sit next to me at lectures and we had our tea together. After lectures, we always exited the university together.

One day, Brian - an English guy - asked me slowly whether we were lovers. I very firmly told him ‘no’.

"See, I know you’re married."

I wondered how he knew I was married. Then it occurred to me that I had told Sarah about it one day - a physics teacher who studied with us.

"Pretty girl! Can I ask her out on a date?" Brian asked.

"Go ahead. Why should I care?" I replied with a bit of hostility.

The next day, when she talked to me, I realised that she wasn’t in her usual friendly mood.

"Are you my custodian?" She asked.


"Did you tell Brian to ask me out on a date?"

"Are you crazy? I should hit him. He asked me whether we were lovers. When I said no, he asked whether it was okay for him to go on a date with you. I said he could do whatever he wanted to - I didn't care."

Her face suddenly became very gloomy, as if grey clouds had been cast over it. "You really don’t care?"

Her question confused me.

"I don't want to go out on a date with him. I told him that," she said in a very sad voice.

I grabbed her wrist and pulled her out of the building in which we had our lectures. Directly on our right hand side was the students’ cafeteria. On the left was our pub, where you could buy beer at a cheaper price than outside the university (as well tea or coffee). Most of the time you could see teachers, students and their friends having coffee or beer on the wooden benches.

I bought two cups of coffee for us both and we sat on a bench in the corner, where no one was around.

"I’m married." I said, looking at her directly.

"Did I ask?" She fired back.

With nothing to say, I stared at her for few moments.

"Sarah told me." She murmured in a low voice. So... she had known that I was a married student.

"Isn't your name Siya?" I asked after a moment.

Even though we had sat beside each other during lectures, left the university, had tea and solved our maths questions together over the past two and a half months, I had never asked her name. At that moment, it came to my attention that she too had never asked any personal questions about me.

"Yes, you knew that."

"No, I just guessed - I once saw the name on an assignment you handed in.”

"Oh. And your name?” She asked.

"Call me Priyan."

"But isn't your name something else?"

"No, I go by Priyan – it’s a shortened form of my name. In this country, names are very short. I think it’s easier to pronounce Priyan."

"Yes… Priyan. I like that name. It has a musical sound."

Thursday, 7 February 2019

Story of my eyes

Tired as the wings of a bird
Emotionally affected and pained.
Hiding and  crying in dark corners
Still allowing myself to be tortured.

If you stop for a while
And look at my face,
My eyes tell a story.
Crying and weeping
With all the emotions one can feel
Trying to stitch my life again.

Like a worn out shoe,
Uttering wild cries
Like a bird in pain
Wishing feelings do not exist.

- Dhammika Chandani

Picture from:

Monday, 5 November 2018

A nice response to my book "Siyama" (written in Sinhala Language)

This poem was from Dhammika Chandani. In response to the book written by me.

It was a quick visit.... 
JUST about to fade off ...... 

In this stormy bond

Emotions on a roller coaster.....
a down pour  of tears..
soaking through my feelings...
My mind a battle ground 
tearing me apart.

But,  there I was....
almost an Oscar nominee 
to hide the  feelings.....
to keep control.....      

stealthily .....    
Keeping his hands on my shoulders.... 
When he kissed my forehead.....   
The current that went through my body..............          
My accelerated heart beat......  
My trembling legs........ 

Reminded me ..... 
that he doesn't know  
how much I love him.

I wish he knew.
Hope is still fluttering its feathers...

-  Dammika Chandani 

Monday, 16 July 2018

Is he really most dangerous philosopher in the West - Žižek

In the last two years or so it has become obvious that not only is Slavoj Žižek having to engage in academic debates with his interlocutors, but that his celebrity as the so-called “Elvis of cultural theory” and “most dangerous philosopher in the West” is beginning to be challenged by liberals and even leftists who are starting to not only be aware of his unusual manners and humour, but what he is actually more or less saying – what his political-intellectual stance is and how it disturbs not only status quo liberal-democratic ideology but also postmodern academia. 

Before the recent media hysteria generated by Žižek’s faux-endorsement of Donald Trump as a disaster that could possibly result in a rejuvenated left, willing to go beyond its ideological subjection to the neoliberal consensus, the liberal-left had already awoken to the fact that Žižek represents a challenge to its smug self-image as morally superior to the conservative right. 
This was seen for instance in Marcus Brown’s April 2016 Guardian column, which compared Žižek’s high theory critique of political correctness to the knavery of Donald Trump, going so far as to suggest that Žižek may very well be a “cryptofascist.”

1 One month later, Žižek was challenged by protesters (fronted by Taryn Fivek) at the Left Forum in New York City, who handed out flyers that “call him out” for making racist and sexist jokes. The problem with this protest is that it failed to demonstrate any understanding of Žižek’s work and he more than kindly addressed at the Forum each of the accusations listed on the flyer.

2 Such activists and journalists are not concerned with debating Žižek’s philosophy from a leftist perspective, they simply want to diminish its political impact by tarnishing his reputation through meme warfare, a liberal equivalent to Tea Partiers who denounce Obama as a “socialist.” Defending himself against more recent criticisms of his theories regarding sexual politics, Žižek commented on how the kind of “tweet culture” that shapes public opinion today is mired in self-righteous political correctness, blending “official tolerance and openness” with “extreme intolerance towards actually different views.”

3 In this context, it was a slightly refreshing change of pace from the usual PC attacks when Žižek was invited to share the limelight with the British novelist Will Self.

Marc James Léger

Read more:

Thursday, 21 June 2018

England and Tunisia

England and Tunisia game 1-1- until 90th minute.

PM Theresa May called Gareth Southgate (England Couch) and says:

"I am having enough problems here in parliament with this Brexit Lot. I don’t want Putin to laugh at me as well. Russia won 5-0 in their very first match. Tell the boys that, I will let Jeremy Corbyn in and he will cap your 100K per week pay pack to 5k a week. Choice is yours. We are a democracy."

And the mysterious second gall appeared in 91 minute of the game.

(well done to England BTW 👏)

Wednesday, 23 May 2018

Harry and Mixed Race Meghan

I wrote this in my facebook wall on 18th of May:

 I am not a fan of the establishment called Royals as many of you know. However, I still remember the day when Princess Diana died. We were holidaying in a caravan park in Cornwall. I immediately thought about her young boys, sons. Now, I know how difficult sometimes to marrying into a different culture, or race and having mixed race children. Sometimes you get a slack from the both side of the divide. Luckily we live in London, magnificent city with loads of mixed race children and with really easy going, tolerant crowd. Unfortunately sometimes you come across some tribal people coming here from four corners of the world, while enjoying the cultural benefits and tolerance provided by Londoners, still trying to force their tribal rules on us.
So for me, Prince Henry Charles aka Harry from the a leading family in UK has real guts to go for Meghan. Well done man. Good luck to both of you for tomorrow.

Then I got a reply from a friend like this:

Can you clarify what you meant by tribal?. It's quite funny kids with money get so much sympathy from the public not the kids just because they marry women with high level of melanin. It's just these royal idiots are still in the 1800 and they have so much catch up to do . Start it with cutting down British public tax money now that's guts. Mute marrying a girl with higher melanin.

I replied to him:  Because there are people who are still looking at mixed race marriages disapprovingly.

Then my mixed race daughter replied to him this way. I love this reply. So I am posting  it here.

It seemed like some clearing up was warranted and I apologise in advance if some misunderstandings occur, mainly due to the fact that this conversation wasn’t the best example of ideal spelling and grammar. 

Firstly, I think ‘tribal’ was supposed to refer to the result of an upbringing and experience in an environment that wasn’t diverse and tolerant for a person of that community to easily learn and be able to reciprocate these values of acceptance, individual liberty and mutual respect to the extent that you and me would expect. 

Secondly, there has been a previous point that Meghan’s ethnicity and culture in relation to her marriage into the Royal Family is a symbol of societal progress in terms of the difference between the general attitude to interracial couples in the past and nowadays. You seem to have reduced this point to nothing but Meghan being a ‘girl with higher melanin’. Of course, this is true and I also believe that many racial prejudices and forms of discrimination are absolutely absurd and disgusting due to the fact that we are all just humans with varying amounts of melanin.

 However, the problem is that you have used this phrase as a classic example of the ‘straw-man fallacy’ by completely dismissing everything behind what being a ‘girl with higher melanin’ becoming the wife of Prince Harry means in our society. Melanin doesn’t determine who you are as a person, but it is determined by who your parents are, who, in turn, are a significant factor in determining your culture, upbringing, behaviour, etc. Meghan’s melanin level determines how people behave towards her, and if they decide to feel hopeful and enthusiastic about the fact this symbol of British culture – the position of Duchess – is now filled by a woman who happens to have lived her whole life knowing the struggles and jubilations of a biracial person, why not just let them be happy about it? 

Thirdly, this wedding may be a ‘mainstream vanity stunt’ but some people like it and they, most importantly, have the freedom to like it. A lot of those people also don’t just forget about other pressing international issues overnight, but they do welcome the idea that as well as terror, devastation and fighting, we must not lose sight of the joys of life that we fight for in the first place and maybe it’s nice to see an event based on love in the news just for one brief moment, instead of one based on pure negativity. Also, the complaints about the ‘£32 million’ spent on the wedding seem rather meagre compared to the expected boost to the UK economy that varies from £500 million to £2 billion as long as we’re not being too specific. I understand your point but I would be considerably more sympathetic to it if the Royal Family didn’t actually benefit our economy in some ways.Just remember, this is just a wedding and the family is just bunch of fancy people. 

In the grand scheme of things, it's really not a big deal at the end of the day. 
- this was written by a family member with a slightly differing opinion on the subject btw

Wednesday, 15 November 2017

A Management Lesson

A friend sent me this.
Image result for ducks for sale

A father left 17 ducks as asset for his Three Sons.

When the Father passed away, his sons opened up the will.

The Will of the Father stated that the Eldest son should get Half of 17 ducks,

The Middle Son should be given 1/3rd of 17 ducks,

Youngest Son should be given 1/9th of the 17 ducks

As it is not possible to divide 17 into half or 17 by 3 or 17 by 9, the sons started to fight with each other.

So, they decided to go to a wise man who lives in a cave.

The wise man listened patiently about the Will. The wise man, after giving this thought, brought one duck of his own & added the same to 17. That increased the total to 18 ducks.

Now, he started reading the deceased father’s will.

Half of 18 = 9.
So he gave 9 ducks
to the eldest son.

1/3rd of 18 = 6.
So he gave 6 ducks
to the middle son.

1/9th of 18 = 2.
So he gave 2 ducks
to the youngest son.

Now add this up:
9 + 6 + 2 = 17 &
This leaves 1 duck
which the wise man took back.

MORAL: The attitude of negotiation & problem solving is to find the 18th duck i.e. the common ground. Once a person is able to find the common ground, the issue is resolved. It is difficult at times.

However, to reach a solution, the first step is to believe that there is a solution. If we think that there is no solution, we won’t be able to reach any!

Picture from this site:

Tuesday, 7 November 2017

Hundred years to the Russian Revolution

It is one hundred years to Russian Revolution today. When I was around 17 or 18 I read John Reed's "Ten days that shook the world" and it gave me goosebumps. It was like reading a thriller.  Then Gorky's "Mother", Ostrovsky's "How to temper the steel" to  Sholohov and Yuri bonderyev's stories make me admire the revolution more and more.

I told my daughters today morning.
"you know if Lenin did not do that revolution in 1917 there would be no Soviet union. I probably would not have got that scholarship and went to study in Soviet union. That means I may never have come to England. I may not even met your mother, my wife. You would not have been born. That's how it affected us."

But then, I had another choice to study in Sri Lanka. I may or may not ended up doing higher studies in another country and I may have met german wife there and then.My wife ia avid traveler and she may have  come to Sri lanka we could have ended up meeting each other. We may or may not have met in any of these places.

Difficult to guess really what would have happened. But I always know what happened. But, does my individual choice is important in this? Not really. This whole event and subsequent 70 years were bigger than one person. Bigger than entire nation. It affected the whole world. It changed the cause of the history.

Dmitri Volkogonov says this in his book "The rise and fall ofthe Soviet Empire".

"For seven decades of the twenties century, the soviet union followed the path mapped out by Lenin. it became a military superpower feared by the rest of the world, and it built a mighty technological, industrial, military and scientific economy. But it failed to make its people wither happy or free. It was the first country to send a man into space but it did nothing to improve human rights for its citizens.the people who carried out the 'Great October Socialist Revolution', who won the 'Great Patriotic War' and who advanced towards the 'Great Constructions of Communism' gained neither liberty nor prosperity for their efforts. 'Shoulder to shoulder' they marched along the Leninist path which had room for the masses only, elbowing the individual out of the way.

- Dmitri Volkogonov

Monday, 5 June 2017

Jeremy Corbyn is not a Marxist but a Social Democrat?

Corbyn and Theresa May
I wrote an article sometime back in 2016. I named Jeremy Corbyn as a post modern marxist at that time. After one and half years later I am about to change my mind on Corbyn. Is he really a Marxist or a post modern  Marxist? He won the second leadership contest of the British labour party with a huge margin. Now he faces the biggest battle of his political career as one of the longest serving leftist MPs in British Parliament. Theresa May - The British Prime Minister called a General election to be held on 8th of June 2017.

Last one and half years, I was listening to Corbyn's speeches and went through Labour Party's left wing politics. I came to a firm conclusion (despite assumptions by right wing media) Jeremy Corbyn is not  a Marxist nor a postmodern Marxist either.

As we know a marxist is someone who read the Marx's "Capital" or read only just important bits or did not read it at all but whichever the way accepting Marx and Engel's economic theories and ideology.  Also a marxist would think and act towards  making revolutionary changes in society  that will lead ultimately to a creation of a communist society.

Lenin, Trotsky, Stalin are therefore marxists.

After Karl Marx and Frederick EngelsV. I. Lenin , Leon Trotsky and Josef Stalin developed Marxist theories further while creating the first socialist country on earth - USSR.  So we have Marxism Leninism, Trotskyism and Stalinism as well. These all isms were based on Marxism any way. Then after China's very own chairman Mao Zedong we also have Maoism. I would actually categorise all of them as post-marxist.

Ernesto Che Guevera and Fidel Castro are late marxists. (First they achieved the revolution in cuba and then tuned into Marxism). Pol-Pot of Cambodia, Ho Chi Minh of Vietnam, Kim Il Sung of North Korea were also post marxists and some were Marxist Leninist and others were marxists maoists.

There are lot of material available on postmodernism. So I am not going to write about it. I will quote this from Julie Graham's article which one can find here.

"Using the oppositional rhetoric that characterizes the most obstreperous post-modernism, one might summarize the postmodern point of view on Marxist geography as follows: Marxism and class are dead, but geography and locality are alive and well. More generally, modernism, homogeneity, rationality, mass production, metanarrative, tract housing, and space are dead. Long live post-modernism, pluralism, power and desire, small batch production, local narrative, indigenous architecture, and place."

Number of postmodern marxists are hiding inside this postmodern set. When we talk about postmodern marxists the first one to come to the mind is Fredrick Jameson. But dare I say that postmodern Marxist is the one who is firmly standing  on marxist foundation but overreaching all the others isms (leninism, trotskyism, stalinism etc) to find a best possible way to face the modern capitalism while finding reasons for marxism's decline.

Postmodern Marxists do not beleive that marxism is dead. Standing on Marxist foundation they are trying various ways to advance further thus crating different schools of thought. The western philosophers and postmodern marxists of that calibre are many. Alain Badiou, Pierre Bourdieu, Alexander Tarasov, Ernesto Laclau, Gayatri Spivak, Slavoj Zizek to name  a few. Some of them are in this list.

Therefore I cannot add labour leader  Jeremy Corbyn to that category of postmodern marxists. he is not a Marxist either as right wing press trying to portray. In one of the television interviews Corbyn admitted he value karl Marx as an authority on economic theories. However he also admitted he read Adam Smith and Ricardo as well. However just reading material of Marx one will not become a Marxist.

You find a clues in Labour manifesto that shows this is not a communist manifesto. Nowhere near to it.  The shadow chancellor John Mcdonnell also admitted he learned  a lot reading "Das Kapital". Whther you agree to what is in the "Capital" or not it's is better always to read it. Böhm-Bawerk did not write books criticizing Capital while not reading it i hope.

What I can see in labour manifesto is a Nordic economic model followed by countries like Finland, Norway, Sweden and Denmark. A similar economic model also put forward by British ecnomist John Maynard Ken  that we called keynesian economics.

For an example in this manifesto labour promises to  re-nationalise railway system. (public ownership). This is clearly putting a stop to thatcherism. Private British railway services are badly funded, expensive and services are below par. In European countries like Germany, France, Italy, Sweden publicly owned rail service offer tremendous value for money. They are on time, have better carriages and cheap to travel. So Corbyn and friends are not offering anything new. Just popular European rail service.

Until the year 1998 United Kingdom provided free education. up to university level. Number of private universities were only 7.   In 1998, then Prime Minister Tony Blair's Labour government has adopted a proposals to charge the university education. It was to be £ 1,000 a year. Since then both the Labour and Conservative governments allowed the tuition fees to rise up to   £ 9,000 a year.  However, this tuition fees applied only to universities in England. Wales and Scotland continue  to provide free education at university level.

Jeremy Corbyn's Labor Party manifesto proposes to abolish the tuition fees to study in British universities in England imposed the by the own Labour government. The small number of the private universities will not be abolished.

Next in Labour manifesto is to suggest public ownership of utility companies which supply Gas, Electricity and water. When these services were privatised it was expected that through private ownership healthy competition will reduce the high prices. But it did not happen. These companies got huge profits but they hardley invented them back. Also they raised the rates more daringly ignoring public outcries,  ombudsman's and regulators advises.

Companies like Thames Water stand accused of water wastage of millions of gallons through leaking of pipes but still charging high prices and raking in billions in profits. Another popular policy by Labour. It seems that people are responding well to this policy.

Labour party also promises to safeguard their flagship project - NHS. NHS needs more money pouring into it. They need more doctors, nurses and infrastructure. Corbyn and manifesto promises to stop Theresa May's selling NHS assets to private sector.

All these public services is more or less working perfectly in some  European and most  Nordic countries. People of these countries pay more tax for these services. In Labour manifesto it claims they would  tax 50% for the wages over £123000. Britain's top 5% of the earners will be affected. They would increase the corporate tax from 9% to 26%.   This tax is 39% in United States and 33% in France. They are threatening to tax the companies registered in tax heavens but  operating and profiting on British soil.

Most of these proposal cannot be categorised as from a marxist communist manifesto . I presume in a  a communist manifesto they would have asked to ban ownership of  private property.  There will be no incentives to private enterprises either. That would be banned as well or will be nationalised.

Corbyn will support small and medium sized businesses to stay afloat and creating jobs. They also want to build 10000 new homes instead of grabbing homes from bourgeoisie. 

Corbyn, McDonnell and co identify themselves as democratic socialists.

Theresa may and Jeremy Corbyn at PMQs

I remember two countries that named themselves as democratic socialist. One is German Democratic rRpublic or popularly known as Eastern Germany. Socialist unity party of germany i.e. SED was called party of democratic socialism. Country was run by the stasi, the feared secret service. I don't think Jeremy Corbyn wanted to run Britain like that.

Other country is Democratic Socialist republic of Sri lanka. Sri lanka has a free education until university level. Free health service similar to Britain's NHS but badly funded. Railways run by the government but people say time of the British raj railways ran better and ontime. Also there are lot of troubles and underfunding in all government run services. Country is not doing great at all.

However United Kingdom is not Sri lanka and not GDR. It's foremost a first world country with billions of income and healthy working populations. Social democracy is not something new to Britain.  All I can see is Jeremy Corbyn is a leftist politician whose ideology swinging like a pendulum in between a social democrat and a democratic socialist. But he is definitely not a diehard Marxist. 

 British history will be changed depending on  who will win the general elections will be  held on June 8.
One of the Corbyn Rallies in Gatshed

1. postmodernism 
2. post-modernism and marxism
3. post marxists 
4. JEREMY CORBYN  has read the works of both Karl Marx and free market pioneer Adam Smith 

Sunday, 21 May 2017

Eco holiday In Brecon Beacon 3 - Lambing by Chris and Liza

Eco holiday In Brecon Beacon 1

Eco holiday In Brecon Beacon 2

Some of these videos may cause inconvenience to some people. I am sorry about that. When we went to a vacation in Wales is the time usually lambing in farms were happening. So farmers often lie awake at night, to help the ewe to deliver the calf. Chris invited us to witness the lambing and we eagerly accepted the invitation. We have never seen that. .

On the one hand, this is important. If my  daughters want to study veterinary science they must have work experience in a farm. I asked Lisa whether they accept students who want the work experience in a farm. Liza said she would. But my daughters  thinking was different. They think farm life is difficult . Chris was working three in the morning, three lambs were born early morning.They have three children, Lisa and Chris work very hard.  I told the children veterinary work is not that hard and they don't need always in farms. But they  are not impressed even though they like the animals and farm itself.

tree house in the corner
අසළින් ගලන   දොළ 
 some scenery near the farmhouse.

In these videos below you can see how Chris help ewe to deliver the calf. Afterwards he would apply the iodine to the wounds and inject the antibiotics to the calf.

Helping the Ewe 

This is not really an easy task. All over the month there will be several births per day.
minute after the birth

calf with it's  mother 
Mating season of the sheppes usually starts  in Autumn / winter time. gestation time is about 6 months.  So farmers usually know by the Easter ewes are ready give birth to the lambs. In  April grasses start to grow. Grass is the main food source for the sheep. The young lamb are sold for meat whne they are around 8 to 9 months. A Sheep's life span is 10 to 12 years.