The Story Of A Tamil Boy’s Revenge

https://www.colombotelegraph.com/index.php/the-story-of-a-tamil-boys-revenge/

Excerpt

Crinkle-Bottom gives him a few coins which Kanthan receives with both hands outstretched and a bow at about 45 degrees to the direction of gravity.

“Did you see what happened there putha (son)?” the father said to young Thevaram. “Uncle is a rice trader. Rice is the staple food around here. Uncle sets the price of rice. He is also higher in the hierarchy of clusters in our society. So he sets the price of fish also!

“What would happen if there is a hotel here? Kanthan will sell his fish to the hotel at a higher price, wouldn’t he? And uncle Crinkle will lose the economic power he wields over Kanthan. So, he needs the social hierarchy, he needs the God, he need the rituals of the God having a bath once a year, this place has to be declared sacred and the hotel project blocked.”

Such social clustering and hierarchy carries to this day, we ought to note with a sense of shame. It was reported a couple of months ago, in a village neighbouring Couragenagar, when there weren’t enough young people of one cluster to take God to his bath, instead of letting those from other clusters to participate, temple management hired a JCB earthmover!

[ God being taken for a ride: photograph via newjaffna.com ]

Author: sbarrkum

I am 3/4ths Sri Lankan (Jaffna) Tamil, 1/8th Sinhalese and 1/8th Irish; a proper mutt. Maternal: Grandfather a Govt Surveyor married my grandmother of Sinhalese/Irish descent from the deep south, in the early 1900’s. They lived in the deep South, are generally considered Sinhalese and look Eurasian (common among upper class Sinhalese). They were Anglicans (Church of England), became Evangelical Christians (AOG) in 1940's, and built the first Evangelical church in the South. Paternal: Sri Lanka (Jaffna Tamil). Paternal ancestors converted to Catholicism during Portuguese rule (1500's), went back to being Hindu and then became Methodists (and Anglicans) around 1850 (ggfather). They were Administrators and translators to the British, poets and writers in Tamil and English. Grandfathers sister was the first female Tamil novelist of modern times I was brought up as an Evangelical even attending Bible study till about the age of 13. Agnostic and later atheist. I studied in Sinhala, did a Bachelor in Chemistry and Physics in Sri Lanka. Then did Oceanography graduate stuff and research in the US. I am about 60 years old, no kids, widower. Sri Lankan citizen (no dual) and been back in SL since 2012. Live in small village near a National Park, run a very small budget guest house and try to do some agriculture that can survive the Elephants, monkeys and wild boar incursions. I am not really anonymous, a little digging and you can find my identity.

16 thoughts on “The Story Of A Tamil Boy’s Revenge”

  1. “It was reported a couple of months ago, in a village neighbouring Couragenagar, when there weren’t enough young people of one cluster to take God to his bath, instead of letting those from other clusters to participate,”

    This is kind of nonsense in Northern and eastern Srilanka, where there is a broader participation in people carrying gods; Not to mention, a huge loss of younger people in the north, both, via emigration, and war, has greatly reduced the younger generation. Compared with the BiMARU, Srilanka is a paradise, on the way people of all castes are treated, and their participation in social activities.

    1. This is kind of nonsense in Northern and eastern Srilanka, where there is a broader participation

      Vijay, I agree that there is less caste issues in SL. On and off it does rear its ugly head though, even among the Sinhalese. Generally among older people, older than my generation (I am 60).

      Recently the Chief Prelates of the Kandy Asgiriya Nikaya (they only ordain Govigama Farmer caste) protested the appointment of Reginald Cooray as Governor for the Central Province. Cooray is a catholic and from the Karave (fishing caste). The prelates had said they would not mind a Christian Goivigama as Governor.

      In Jaffna and East all the MP’s are Vellala (Farmer caste). Prabhakaran was from the Fishing caste.

      You may find this book interesting. I have only got to about half of the first chapter.
      https://zodml.org/sites/default/files/%5BIvind_Fuglerud%2C_Oivind_Fuglerud%5D_Life_on_the_Outs.pdf

  2. i didn’t know who this kroner nidi guy was until i read of him here. What an ugly ass dude man.. gotta say our Imran bhai is way better looking than your ugly ass indian leaders. Got more votes and women too. Khan bhai doing Genghis proud!

    1. This kroner guy is no slouch. He had three begums simultaneously. Not like the new Genghis three at three different times.

          1. Not just love life but also being the big daddy.

            is duniya mayN aayay ho to kuch kar dikhao meherban,
            kay jab har gali say guzro to awaz aayay “abba jaan!”

            Imran is special. Looks are important and ugly ass Indian politicians get shown up against the rokh-e Imran. Basically if Imran bhai expressed the wish to rule India, Indian women will have a collective orgasm. Can’t beat stanis in the hood.

          2. Pathans might be the simultaneously the most discriminated as well as the most entrenched community in the subcontinent

  3. Jaggu’s poem/quote is funny. But also highlights some typical crass Islamist mentality Hindus express a natural allergy to.

    Looks are overrated especially in Indian subcontinent context where high society is/strives-to-be extremely asexual. Hindu society even more so with contemporary Hinduism considering sex only procreationary and even then it considers it lust driven. Our top leadership ethos seem to involve brahmacharya as a higher ideal, hence Modi, RaGa, Mamata etc. Folks in India aren’t exactly in “awe” of Imran’s private life.

    On that note as a sidenote anecdote, I had an interesting conversation last time in Mumbai with the rental car driver (mid 30s Maratha Hindu, sounded like the type that votes Shiv Sena locally and BJP nationally). I had hired the car to visit the caves north of the city. The guy was lambasting about how the area was full of these young couples and immoral girls and how folks wonder about high rape incidents when the girls are putting themselves in those positions. I am personally the type not to create a verbal confrontation and despite my own westernized views on these matters, I remain silent or play along without revealing where I stand. It was Ramzaan time and number of visible Muslims in Indian streets has definitely increased. So I point out to him “well look at these folks in full burqas, definitely on the other end of the spectrum don’t you think?” I was trying to see whether the Hindu social conservative has some secret or even explicit admiration for Islamic society. The guy nonchalantly dismissed them as “prostitutes” and said the bar dancers etc wear hijab during the day to avoid identification. The antipathy was shocking, especially given that my own liberal worldviews assign social conservatism among Hindus as an Islamic/Abrahamic influence. But then many things started falling into place and I realized this conservatism is older than Islamic influence and Islam itself probably draws from something proto Islam when it comes to these mores. If one pays attention to Hindu accusations of Islamic demography power, they do dismiss Islam at a fundamental level “muh d1ck” ideology. I’m not saying who is right wrong or high low. Just felt that exposing an Islamist poem like that or also “barrha khandaan, jihad asaan” doesn’t exactly sit high in Hindu morality. Referring to Hindu women orgasming to Imran also exposes the basic understanding we have about Islam’s appeal to the basal/carnal nature in people. We really are “different nations”.

    1. “The guy was lambasting about how the area was full of these young couples and immoral girls and how folks wonder about high rape incidents when the girls are putting themselves in those positions.”

      I would put these down to generational/upbringing differences rather than deep set beliefs. One generation ago, women in my family did not wear Western clothing, most were educated but did not work. In this generation, not working is not an option, and Western clothing is quite normal. In contrast, vegetarianism and transmission of Hindu stories and epics remains as important, perhaps even more important than in the last generation.

      The broad structural changes are quite apparent if you look at the proportion of women joining the industrial/post-industrial workforce, getting a higher education, wearing jeans, and getting driving licenses. The kind of conservatism you allude to has not been able to stop these changes, even the right to marry across religions/castes remains intact, in fact such marriages are still incentivized by the state. To me, this indicates that the conservatism is not as deep rooted as you are perhaps making out, whether its origins lie in Hindu traditions or not.

      1. Perhaps that conservatism does not have a dog in the fight regarding women’s participation in workforce or inter community marriage, but does draw its lines about sexual freedom or what it sees as evolution or impetus of a hypersexual culture (and it sees western culture as bringing that today, but in the past it regarded Islam as bringing the same).

        I read a lot of what I’d call “post-biological-gender”ism in concepts like Ardhanarishwar or basically a male body that can transcend the base masculine energies (like the “joy” or ego boost of the whole basti call out abbajaan) and likewise a female that transcends the base feminine energy (so beyond the householder role like an Uma Bharati or Mamata Banerjee is accepted as worthwhile of conducting rajdharma).

        You mentioned about how the transmission of vegetarianism is continuing. Dig deep into the fundamentals of this and suppression of sex drive is built into this as well. Sattvic diet is a pre modern scientific stab at the above goal, and non vegetarians and particularly big animal eaters (beef eaters) are seen as having deliberately activated the “lower” nature… which also incidentally plays into easier capability of dehumanizing said beef eater. In regular Hindu households, a direct line is generally drawn regarding Muslim polygamy, demographic explosion, violence within and affecting outwards from Muslim societies/countries, to the high non veg and beef eating since the “I am what I eat” is a core concept in built to the pantheistic view. In essence what may seem like contradictory trends from one perspective (greater women liberation and participation in material sphere… also greater cow lynchings) might actually be one synergistic trend that we’re just not able to look for lol

        Anyway I brought up this point because what seems like an innocuous light hearted joke comment from Jaggu actually has several layers to it both in terms of where it comes from as well and where it was supposed to go and where it is perceived to come from etc.

        1. Sexual freedom is not linked to political and economic freedom for Indian women, like it became for women in the West. Perhaps the reason for that is the self-sacrificing nature of Indian religions, but it also has to do with the peculiar trajectory of political/economic and social rights in India.

    2. “I was trying to see whether the Hindu social conservative has some secret or even explicit admiration for Islamic society.”

      They do have , not just in areas where you are looking for. They envy their monotheism-ness in life about every subject (both the male and female counterparts), which they put as the primary reason for them “winning”. That’s why the constant push for lesser diversity in matters of caste,region, religious practices etc.

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