Let noble thoughts come to us from every side. Rigveda 1-89-I 
“There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, Than are dreamt of in your philosophy: Hamlet, Prince of Denmark, Shakespeare
“She had always wanted words, she loved them, grew up on them. Words gave her clarity, brought reason, shape. Whereas I thought words bent emotions like sticks in water.”―Michael Ondaatje, The English Patient
POEM: John Donne’s Lovers’ Infiniteness
If yet I have not all thy love,
Dear, I shall never have it all;
I cannot breathe one other sigh, to move,
Nor can entreat one other tear to fall;
All my treasure, which should purchase thee-
Sighs, tears, and oaths, and letters- I have spent,
Yet no more can be due to me,
Than at the bargain made was meant;
If then thy gift of love were partial,
That some to me, some should to others fall,
Dear, I shall never have thee all.
But he thinks that she has more love left in her heart which is now being given to someone else. So sadly, he will not be able to possess her completely.
SONG: Bellamy Brothers’ I need more of you byI need more of you, changin my rain into sun
More of you, put on my blues on the run
I need more of you, darling, I need more of you
More, anything less wouldn’t do
Lovers’ infiniteness by
I need more of you by Bellamy Brothers
If yet I have not
all thy love,
The poet says that he does not have all of his beloved’s love
more of you, changin my rain into
the poet let flow? Don’t they seem to sing from the same sheet of hymns?
On 3rd October 2014 Mariyam Asif Siddiqui, a 12-year-old Muslim girl at Cosmopolitan High
School in Mumbai, won sixth grade category inter-school ‘Shrimad Bhagavad Gita Champion League’ competition organized by the International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKON). The Bhagavad Gita consists of 700 verses of Hindu scriptures in Sanskrit, which form part of the Mahabharata. Why shouldn’t Zaka, a Muslim student, three years older than Mariyam, listen to an episode in Mahabaratha with little more patience? [http://www.huffingtonpost.in/2015/04/10/bhagavad-gita_n_7022500.html]
find overwhelming delight in quoting Mahabarata?
When I read the tome of a book in Sinhala, from cover to cover, now weeping, now smiling from ear to ear, I was only 10 years old. A decade later I went on to read it again, this time the English translation.
Yudhistra: ………………… Grandfather, tell us how to kill you.Bhishma placed a hand on Yudhisthira’s shoulder: “O son of Pandu, as you say, I am invincible. When I take my weapons and my large bow in hand, I am incapable in being defeated in battle by the very gods with Indra at their head.“Draupada’s valiant and wrathful son, who is known in your army as Shikandi-it
is he who will cause my fall. Formerly he was a woman, as everyone knows.
Therefore, I will not strike him, even if he attacks me. Place him in forefront
of the fight and let Arjuna stand behind him. Only Arjuna or the illustrious Krishna can bring me down in battle. If Shikandi faces me I will not fight. Then it will be possible for Arjuna to slay me. Do this, O Yudhistara, and gain victory.
‘There was an umpire named HairWho has a body of an overgrown bearWith a brain as small as a HareWho treated Sri Lankans unfair’
Can you pen such a banner?
[a] The Kurus and the Pandavas are sometimes said to represent forces that exist in each society and individual.
[b] Mahabharata is an allegory for a inner war between right and wrong.
[c] The story is a history of the Aryan conquest of much of Eurasia.
[d] Mahabharata is a vehicle to both educate and entertain the masses in camps and villages through the ages, invented by thinkers of great imagination and polished over the centuries.
[e] Mahabharata demonstrates how the good can be taken advantage of by the devious.
[f] Mahabharata makes a compelling case for immersing oneself into the world as opposed
[g] Most of all, as I see Mahabhatha as a testimony to the inevitability of karma or destiny: we all are pre-programmed, said Krishna, one of the nine avatars of Lord Vishnu:”]:”O Arjuna, I am time itself, grown mature, capable of destroying the
world, and now engaged in subduing it. Even without your effort, all the opposing warrirors shall cease to exist. Therefore arise and win great glory, conquer your enemies, and enjoy a prosperous kingdom. They are already slain by me. You, O Arjuna, are merely the occasion. Kill Drona, Bhisma, Jayadratha, Karana, and all the other great warriors whom I have already doomed. Do not fear, but fight and conquer your enemies in battle.”
King of Troy. Though he was born in a royal family, he had been brought up in
obscurity because an oracle had prophesied that he would one day bring ruin to
the city. He did
Before Achilles was born, the Fates told his mother that he would die
young. After his birth she bathed him in the river Styx, whose magic waters
gave protection from all woulds and diseases. However the waers did not touch
the heel b which Thetis had held hm. So, when Paris shot a poisoned arrow at
Achilles, the gods guided Paris’ arrow to his heel which was the only
vulnerable part of his body. Achilles dies from the wound.“The Trojan War” Communicate in English, Literature Reader 8 [Used for grade 7- Int’l] by
“As I read on, I myself was moved
by the force and fury of the storm compressed in these lines. The sheer poetry
of it carried me on…. At the thought of
helpless humanity I nearly broke down.”
Words of Shakespeare
Blow, winds, and crack your cheeks! Rage, blow!
You cataracts and hurricanes, spout
Till you have drenched our steeples, drowned the cocks!
You sulfurous and thought-executing fires,
Vaunt-couriers of oak-cleaving thunderbolts,
Singe my white head! And thou, all-shaking thunder,
Smite flat the thick rotundity o’ th’ world,
Crack nature’s molds, all germens spill at once
That make ingrateful man!
Blow, winds! Blow until your
cheeks crack! Rage on, blow!
Let tornadoes spew water
until the steeples of our churches and the weather vanes are all drowned.
Let quick sulfurous lightning, strong enough to split enormous trees,
singe the white hair on my head.
Let thunder flatten the spherical world,
crack open all the molds from which nature forms human beings,
and spill all the seeds from which ungrateful humans grow!
unless fish was preserved and stored. [Jadi]
“It rains, oh! It pours with unfathomable fury and ferocity,
Those Ants may dine
Those who have suffered the sea and saved fish for the monsoon months
Those Grasshoppers may whine
Those who have been idle and failed to save in the unruffled months
My father, Baminahennadige Donald B. Peiris of Lakshapaiya, Moratuwa used to say that’s how his mother would say during the monsoon rain
Study hard today while you are nourished
For tomorrow without your own oar
you would be drowned
The Ant and the
In a field one summer’s day a Grasshopper was hopping about,
chirping and singing to its heart’s content. An Ant passed by, bearing along with great toil an ear of corn he was taking to the nest.
“Why not come and chat with me,” said the Grasshopper,
“instead of toiling and moiling in that way?”
“I am helping to lay up food for the winter,” said the
Ant, “and recommend you to do the same.”
“Why bother about winter?” said the Grasshopper; we have
got plenty of food at present.” But the Ant went on its way and
continued its toil.
When the winter came the Grasshopper found itself dying of hunger,
while it saw the ants distributing, every day, corn and grain from the stores
they had collected in the summer.
Then the Grasshopper knew… It is best to prepare for the days of
Master Nobody: Why, the Cambridge International Examination Board itself, indeed.
I know, since Merchant of Venice is written in four centuries ago, you find it hard to grapple with the language. But in the British education system, the 1990 National Curriculum in English lists Shakespeare as the only author that all British school children, over the age 13, must study (Curtis, 2008) Furthermore, when in 1983 the Secretary of State in UK required the nine GCE boards to devise a common core for A level the English working party could agree only one thing that is not vague and general: that at least one play by Shakespeare must be studied.
‘Shakespeare’s plays remain the outward limit of human achievement: aesthetically, cognitively, in certain ways morally, even spiritually. They abide beyond the end of the mind’s reach; we cannot catch up to them. Shakespeare will go on explaining us in part
because he invented us… ’
students, the biblical references wouldn’t be picked up; no bells would ring reminding the quotations from the Bible. Herein again, is a situation where I found myself falling into the thinking of our Krishna. The master, not the lord. Let me quote a couple of lines from two poems from the current Cambridge OL syllabus and previous syllabus.
Poet is a lost
soul that God [Love] is courting and trying to reassure
Love bade me
welcome. Yet my soul drew back Guilty of dust and sin
Solomon 5:6. “I opened to my
beloved, but my beloved had withdrawn himself” (Authorized Version,
is accepting of the poet’s faults even as the poet draws back and feels,
“guilty of dust and sin”
‘Dust’ has a special meaning from the bible.
Dust means human or flesh. This meaning comes from the famous saying in the
bible: ‘Dust thou art, and to dust thou shall return’. Herbert, the guest,
feels embarrassed because he is human.
What does the guest mean by ‘sin’? The guest feels guilty of original sin in
the first stanza. Christians like Herbert believe this sin is in a person’s
soul since birth.
Love, observing me grow slack From my first entrance in,
The poet shows how he is troubled in spirit because he
Drew nearer to
me, sweetly questioning,
If I lacked any thing.
Interpretation in the
perspective of Divine Love
heart is like a singing bird
nest is in a water’d shoot;
bird symbolizes change of season from winter to Spring/re-birth of nature.]
The poet has come out of an uneventful life to joyous days. Water’d shoot a
growing sprout of a plant that symbolizes growth of love, lushness &
celebrates her state of bliss on finding the love of her life-God.
Lord will guide you always: he will satisfy your needs. You will be like well-trodden garden, like a spring whose
waters never fail [Isaiah 58:11]
heart is like an apple-tree
boughs are bent with thickest fruit.
tree symbolizes nourishment to the human race.]
spite of my enrichment, I am humbled
Testament says that those who ‘lay hold’ of this tree ‘will be blessed’