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Old 15-07-09, 03:10 PM
sriyanj sriyanj is offline
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Default Mr.Aryasena Ashubodha or Mr.Arisen Ahubudu?

Mr.Aryasena Ashubodha or Mr.Arisen Ahubudu?

by Sriyan Jayasekera

Mr.D.D.A.Ashubodha joined the school by the sea in 1951 as a 1st class trained teacher and served the College for twenty nine years. During this long period he taught From I class right up to the Advanced Level class. He was a very popular teacher in Sinhala and Buddhism, with great distinction at that. Although he was a qualified teacher in Art and Music his talents were not fully utilized by the College.

“Not to name the school or the masters of men illustrious for literature is a kind of historical fraud by which honest fame is injuriously diminished” are the golden words of Dr.Samual Johnson. So please permit me to reflect the image of a School Master and Poet so eminent as yourself sir. If the places held by such masters of men is worthy of mention the training they gave and the fortunes that went with it are doubly worthy of appraisal.

I was fortunate to be in his Geography class in the Lower 4th. His historical knowledge was hardly harnessed at S.T.C. College which had a proud record of several outstanding Teachers, clad in coat and tie, where culprits and weak students regularly get “Six of the best”, Mr.Ashubodha eschewed such temptations and his kind words were more effective than the cane. His advice en clothed in the rich grab of simplicity and truth, was one which reminds us of king Solomon of old who said “A word fitly spoken is like Apples of Gold in pictures of Silver”.

His attire was the National Dress with the “Uturu Saluwa”. Without an iota of doubt, I wish to state that he is one of the greatest teachers who roamed the class rooms of S.Thomas’College, Mount Lavinia.

He was the Head of the Faculty of Sinhala. He was instrumental in organizing a Hela Havula Movement in the school and was also the master in charge of the Buddhist Society. His main contribution was training speakers and debaters to express themselves without throwing their limbs and mixing with words of other languages. He was also in charge of the Sinhala Literary Society and the Sinhala Debating team.

During the time when Hela Havula was very active at college, Mr.Ashubodha was taking a walk on the beach one evening. Spotting him, a group of young Thomians shouted “Helayo” and ran into hiding. One boy was spotted by Mr.Ashuboda, he too knowing the kindness of his Teacher did not run. Our beloved Teacher came up to him and said “Continue shouting, it is not a bad word, we all are Helayo”. This boy is non other than the famous actor Gamini Fonseka and he very sincerely told me, “Even as school boys we respect our teachers, especially the good ones, and it was not me who shouted but the others who went into hiding”. At a tender age all of us who were in his Sinhala class were encouraged to write Articles and compose Kavi. During our school Days there was no Oratory contest or a Debating competition without his participation either as a judge or the master in charge .In the class room he used to devote a few minutes to relate stories about the history of our country, emphasizing on great work done by our kings, going into detail about our culture and the traditions, all this was done to promote us to love our country and to be proud of our heritage.

One day a young police officer traveling in his jeep spotted Mr.Ashuboda waiting for a bus, stopped his vehicle and invited his old school master to get into the jeep in order to be dropped at home. Unable to recognize his past student Mr.Ashuboda inquired “ Ma Kala Warada Kumak Da? ” this officer was Priyanka Perera his close associate now.

Our Gurutuma was the best pupil of the great Munidasa Cumaranatunga. Continued the good work of the master to promote and foster the Hela Basa and Desa. He brought out “The Ediya” journal with the help of Mr.G.L.Ginadasa with much sacrifices. He penned several books under the name Arisen Ahubudu. He also authored several books for children in order to promote them to love our Motherland, Culture and Heritage. His good work was richly rewarded with several Literary awards. Amongst them Mr.Arisen Ahubudu was the recipient of State Literary Awards for his prose “Paraviya” in 1962 and “Rasa Dahara” in 1969 and also for his verse “Athu Aga Dili Vana Mal” in 1987.

He was honoured with The Sarasavi Award in 1979 for composing songs for the “Hadhaya” film.

After leaving college he was instrumental in completing a good portion of the Sinhala Dictionary. The genuineness of his work and the path of simplicity he trod brought along with it his appointment as an adviser and consultant to the late President Premadasa.

The “Hela Havula Movement” in recognition of the invaluable service rendered to uplift the intelligent understanding of the Sinhala Language and the enormous contribution made by Mr.Arisen Ahubudu by writing many a gems of poetry awarded the Kiwi Suru in 1986 and Hela Bas Isuru in 1991. Although the facades of politics that seem interesting at times for some but dissatisfying for the most, leaders of our country, however, in recognition of the vast strides by this humble gentleman, with gratitude for unique and un para rel contribution in arresting the deterioration of the Sinhala Language and Literature and elevating it to reminiscent of its past glory coupled with the gallant steps taken to uplift the culture and heritage of our motherland, very appropriately bestowed him with a Janadipathy Award “Kala Suri” in 1984

I was fortunate to be amongst the large number of Thomians who felicitated their teachers including Mr.Ashubodha on 4th December 2007 at Sasakawa Hall which turned out to be a roaring success and wish him continued good health.

In conclusion I can do no better than to remind you of Arun Dias Bandaranikes’ recital of David Sansonis’ poem about Mr.Ashubodha that unforgettable evening.

Telling tales; Jathaka Kathaa
Very few paying attention Ahh!?
Plot unfolding; hero? Ennadaa?
G. Yasaman at the back of the class
Carrying on his own comedic farce;
Not a clue of "who", or "what" or "why"
Waiting for the bell to say "bye,bye".
Ashuboda comes close, very close;
Wit and kindness were his ploy; not force.
Gently by the shoulder led the 'star'!
"Menna lamaine, Kalagolaya

Last edited by sriyanjay; 07-06-11 at 09:03 AM.
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Old 04-01-11, 10:41 PM
sriyanjay sriyanjay is offline
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Default Our master, Kalasuri Arisen Ahubudu (Aashuboda) celebrated his 90th birthday on 18 Ma

Subject: Class of 1971 - Mr. Arisen Ahubudu (Aashuboda) celebrated his 90th birthday on 18 March 2010 (photographs)

Dear Fellow Class Mates

Our master, Kalasuri Arisen Ahubudu (Aashuboda) celebrated his 90th birthday on 18 March 2010.

Attached are photographs taken on that occasion, which have been kindly forwarded for circulation by Fazal Issadeen of the Class of 1971.

Kalasuri Arisen Ahubudu with Hiran Coorey & G.Y.De Silva.

Kalasuri Arisen Ahubudu with his daughter & grand son.

Kalasuri Arisen Ahubudu seated with his brother.
standing Hiran Coorey, Ranmal Rodrigo & G.Y.De Silva.

I understand that Fazal received these photographs from another Thomian, Hiran Cooray. This shows that the Thomian network is in full swing!

Additional details covering Mr. Arisen Ahubudu are available on the following link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arisen_Ahubudu


Best Regards

Indran Indrakumar (Kula)

Auckland, New Zealand

Telephone: +64 9 5247511

Last edited by sriyanjay; 13-01-11 at 10:23 PM.
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Old 19-01-11, 06:25 PM
sriyanjay sriyanjay is offline
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Default Looking on is KalaSoori Arisen Ahubudu.

President Mahinda Rajapaksa greeting Prof Karunaratna Hangawatte of the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, USA at the end of the D.A.Rajapaksa commemoration oration at the BMICH.
Looking on is KalaSoori Arisen Ahubudu.
Ports Shipping and Aviation Minister Chamal Rajapaksa, Sam Wijesinghe and Prof P.W. Epasinghe are also in the picture.
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Old 27-05-11, 08:11 AM
sriyanjay sriyanjay is offline
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Default The death occurred yesterday of poet, veteran teacher, linguist and artist

from Richard Brohier richardb@kardinia.org.au
date Fri, May 27, 2011 at 6:08 AM

Just read the following Obituary in the Daily news of today – 27th May 2011.

“The death occurred yesterday of poet, veteran teacher, linguist and artist Arisen Ahubudu following a brief illness. He was 93.

A much sought after literary personality, Arisen Ahubudu started his career as a teacher and served S. Thomas’ College, Mount Lavinia for a greater part of his teaching career where many leading personalities of the country learnt at his feet. Later he came under the influence of Hela Haula tradition and founded a new aesthetic language in the Lankan literary field especially in song.”

Mr Ashubodha as I knew him in those days was my Sinhala teacher in my Middle School years.

I remember him as always immaculately dressed in his Ariya Sinhala attire. He would come into class and his first task was to get the attention of the boys.

His routine was to get everybody seated and then he would say "ath" (meaning hands together). Then he would say "pa" (feet together) and lastly he would say "thol" (keep your lips together)!

We would have to be in this silent position for a minute or he wouldn’t begin his class. It was undoubtedly a painful 1 minute - but he could command it!

Knowing too our competitive nature – he would draw three rows with chalk on the bottom edge of the blackboard to depict the three rows of the class.

Without consciously drawing attention to it he would throughout the class keep adding strokes whenever a row caused a disturbance of any sort. This way he got us to keep each other in check

without him having to shout above the class! At the end of the class there was always a winning row – for the most attentive!! What a genius teaching skill to grab the attention of the entire class for the entire 40 minutes!

Later on I went to him for Sinhala Tuition to his home down by the sea in Dehiwela on Sunday mornings. I remember that the road in fact ended in his house.

There he lived with the other two bachelor teachers in Mr Coperahewa and Mr. Jinadasa. They were inseparable.

From my observation of Mt Ashubodha I can say he lived simply. He dressed simply. He taught simply - but profoundly.

I can say, he was one of the most unassuming yet influential teachers that made an impact on my growing years at STC.

I can say, I am grateful for the fond memories of such a dedicated teacher committed to the cause of developing his students into the stature of the grown men we are today.

‘Ath’, ‘Pa’, ‘Thol’. May he Rest in Peace.

Richard Brohier

h: 03 5222 2697
m: 0412 580812
e: richbroh@optusnet.com.au
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Old 30-05-11, 12:43 AM
sriyanjay sriyanjay is offline
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Default Arisen ahubudu bids adieu


He was part of a generation that defined the Sinhala language, revolutionised its usage and shaped its future. His contribution to the initiation, growth and the propagation of the Hela ideology was immense. In short, his passing away denotes an end of an era, where the dynamics of the Sinhala language prevailed over many aspects of the social life; which includes the use of ‘good’ Sinhala names when it comes to naming children. By the time of his demise – on May 25, 2011 – Arisen Ahubudu was the highest authority on the Sinhala language in the country. And The Nation takes a look at his life, ideals and influence on the Sri Lankan public…

By Vindya Amaranayake

Devundara Devamanimendra Ariyasena Ashubodha was born in the British occupied Ceylon in 1920, in the Southern coastal village of Malalagama in Koggala – also home to great Sinhala novelist Martin Wickramasinghe.
Even from a very young age he was conscious of the state of colonial subjugation that his country was under. This awareness heightened when he came to associate Cumaratunga Munidasa at the tender age of 19; by that time he had already begun his career as a teacher. As an amateur poet he contributed to Suhasa magazine from 1939-1940, of which Cumaratunga was the editor. It is this association that led him to join the Hela Havula movement in 1941.

“A lot of young school teachers, especially from down South, joined Hela Havula at that time. Ariyasena Ashubodha, who later changed his name to Arisen Ahubudu in line with his ideology, was among them,” Dr. Sandagomi Coperahewa, Senior Lecturer, Department of Sinhala, University of Colombo said.
Along with others, such as Raphael Tennakoon, Alavu Isi Sabihela, Mahanama Dissanayake and Wellala Jayamaha, who was in fact Arisen Ahubudu’s teacher, he worked to define the Hela ideology, which was mainly focussed on the purity of the Sinhala language.

And, after working at several schools in the South, including Mahinda College, Galle, Arisen Ahubudu moved to Colombo in the 1950s, and that was the second phase of his life, Dr. Coperahewa explained.
From then on, for 28 years (1951-1979), he taught at S. Thomas’ College, Mount Lavinia forming and shaping several generations of students who fuelled the resurgence of Sinhala in the country. According to Dr. Coperahewa, there were Hela Societies formed within the school that contributed immensely to the Sinhala consciousness within the country.

Among some of the students he nurtured during his illustrious career as a teacher are: Prof. Nandadasa Kodagoda, Vajira Tennakoon, Prof. Dayasiri Fernando, Prof. G. L. Peiris, K. N. Choksey, Tilak Marapana, Tyronne Fernando, Keheliya Rambukwella, S. L. Gunasekera, Rukman Senanayake, Kesaralal Gunasekera, Dr. Shiran Deraniyagala, Sunil Siriwardena, Jayantha Dharmadasa, Ranjith Wijeyawardena, Nimal Welgama, U. D. Jayawardena, A. T. Ariyaratne and many more.
“His ideology was three-pronged: Hela basa, resa and desa (Sinhala language, race and nation). And he was committed to safeguard the purity of all three throughout his life. He, and others in the Hela Havula, dismissed the idea that the Sinhala race initiated with the arrival of Prince Vijaya from India. They date the history of the race and language back to the days of King Ravana, and even before. That is what he says in the song Lanka Lanka Pembara Lanka, where he says, Bali, Tharu, Ravana, Gemunu, Vijayaba,” Dr. Coperahewa pointed out.
His ideology was also apparent in the books and poems he wrote for children. “They are written using pure Hela (Sinhala language devoid of any Sanskrit or Pali influence). While he was teaching at Mahinda College, he authored story books for children called Ediya (courage) with the intention of ‘podiththange edi wadanna’ (to give courage and bravery to children),” added.

Ahubudu’s collaboration with Sunil Shantha gave rise to an entirely different genre of Sinhala song. Sunil Shantha composed music for the highly lyrical verses written by Ahubudu, which became immensely popular with the Sri Lankan public. Even today, their lyrical and musical qualities are appreciated by many.
“He was also a lexicographer. After retiring as a teacher he worked in the staff of the Sinhala Dictionary under the Ministry of Cultural Affairs. He was one of the sub editors,” Dr. Coperahewa said.
Among the songs he wrote, apart from Lanka Lanka Pembara Lanka, were Dakuna Negenahira, Saman Wele Mal, Senkadagalapura Dalada Budu Res, Golu Muhude Muthu Ete, Puruthugeesi Karaya, Sudata Sude, Pundanda Eliyai and Kate Kiri Suwanda. Some of the film songs he wrote, for example, for Lester James Peries’ Sandeshaya and Titus Totawatte’s Handaya are remembered to this date.

According to Dr. Coperahewa the appearance of pure Sinhala names for institutions, both public and private, denotes the influence of Arisen Ahubudu in diverse areas of the society. It must be noted that it was Arisen Ahubudu who gave the name ‘Rivira’ to the Rivira Media Corporation and our Sinhala paper Rivira, when it started off five years ago.
When he was advisor to Prime Minister Ranasinghe Premadasa from 1985 to 1989 – also after he became President – Arisen Ahubudu was instrumental in giving Sinhala names for the development projects initiated by Premadasa. “Some of the names that were given to the villages set up as part of the Gam Udawa movement, such as Kandasurindygama and Sarasavigama, are examples of his influence on Premadasa,” Dr. Coperahewa pointed out.

He added that until his death last week, there was a tendency among parents, especially in the urban areas and the diaspora, to seek his advice when naming their newborn.
During his lifespan of 91 years he received many accolades. He was dubbed ‘kiviti’ by Cumaratunga Munidasa himself, for his aptitude at weaving poetry and received State honour Kalasuri in 1984.
Among his most critically acclaimed works are Pareviya, for which he was awarded the State Literary Award in 1962. Then there is also Lanka Nam Gam Wahara (Etymology of Sinhala Names), which came under censure for its suggestion that the place names in the North and East have a Sinhala origin. Then his work Arutha Nirutha is also considered among his best.

He lived true to his ideology, rejected the European attire and donned the national dress when he started his career as a teacher. And throughout his life, worked tirelessly, for the cause he undertook when he joined the Hela Havula movement as far back as in 1941. That is to teach the proper use of Sinhala language.

The Nation 29/05/2011.
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Old 02-06-11, 07:48 PM
sriyanjay sriyanjay is offline
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Default ITN News 29/05/2011

Arisen Ahubudu bids farewell
May 29, 2011 Local News

Well known artiste Arisen Ahubudu has bidden farewell to the nation.

The funeral of Kalashuri Arisen Ahubudu was held at the Borella General Cemetery this evening under state patronage. Ministers, Parliamentarians and a large number of artistes were present. President Mahinda Rajapaksa visited his residence at Kalapura in Mt. Lavinia yesterday and paid his last respects. Arisen Ahubudu was 91 years of age when he passed away on Thursday. He was born as Devndara Deva-manimendra Aryasena Ashubodha in Malalagama, Koggala on 18th March 1920. He changed his name to Arisen Ahubudu due to his love for the Sinhalese language. He was an expert on Sinhala language and did his utmost to preserve the correct usage of the language. He has authored many books and penned lyrics of a number of songs. He has also named a number of babies and commercial organizations in the country with his vast knowledge on the meanings of words and the science of sounds.

A brief introduction to Kala Shuri Ariesen Ahubudu:

Born on March 18, 1920 at Mudiyallagahawatta in Malalaga, Koggala, he was given the name Ariyasena Aashuboda. He had his early education at the Kataluwa government school and joined the Nittambuwa Teacher Training College. It was after his close association with Hela stalwarts Vellala Jayamaha and Cumaratunga Munidasa in the thirties and forties that he sharpened his language skills. The name change to Arisen Ahubudu was also the result of this association.

For 42 years, he served as a teacher. He was a devoted teacher and did much to mould his pupils to be useful citizens with a love for the language, race and country. Having first taught at Holy Trinity College in Nuwara Eliya, he moved to Mahinda College, Galle and later to Maha Bodhi College, Maradana. His longest stint came even later at S. Thomas' College from 1952 until 1979. To promote the use of Sinhala at a time when prominence was given to English, he began a free correspondence course for students whom he had never met or seen.

Although Ahubudu's skills in the use of Sinhala were highly acclaimed, his popularity came mainly through the songs he wrote. He started writing songs as early as 1939. The first was the Teacher Training College song. The song he created on Sunil Shantha's invitation with the dawn of Independence in 1948 - 'Lanka Lanka Pembara Lanka' - with simple, meaningful words created such a nationalistic and patriotic feeling that many have accepted it as the unofficial National Anthem. In fact, it's with this song that many of us 'met' Ahubudu. 'Dakuna Negenahira' was another of the patriotic songs he created for Sunil Shantha calling for a united Sri Lanka. More recently, Victor Ratnayake sang 'Golumuhude Muthukete' - a song with a nationalistic flavour. Ahubudu's collection of children's songs is a valuable anthology. Here again he remains unique in the use of words. As a poet, he has created several classics. The best is 'Pareviya' (1961), the longest Sandesa poem in Sinhala where the message of peace is taken by the dove to China. It was turned into a ballet by Premakumar Epitawela. His versatility as a historian has come out in the form of several published works including 'Sinhala Vansa Kathawa' (1985), 'Irahanda Negi Rata' (1994) and 'Lanka Gam Vahara' (1987). He wrote the biography of Cumaratunga Munidasa ('Cumaratungu Asura' - 1957) at a time when writing biographies in Sinhala was not in vogue. Critics hailed his work as a fine example of how biographies should be written. He displayed his skills as a dramatist with 'Sakviti Ravana' written and produced by him. It was well received and became very popular. His early plays included 'Vetta Pittalaya' and 'Peraliya' (1945). He has edited magazines, written glossaries and served on the staff of the Sinhala Dictionary. Arisen Ahubudu is a rare individual possessing varied skills - all woven around the Sinhala language.
Ariesen, Ahubudu, Ahubudhu, Arisen, Arisen Ahubudu, Arisen Ahubudhu, Sri lanka, Sri lankan literature, Sri Lankan history, Sihala, Sinhalese, Sinhala race, Sinhala language, Sinhala history, Sinhalese history

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Old 06-06-11, 10:11 AM
Sapaya Sapaya is offline
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Default Mr. Ariyasena Ashubodha or Mr. Arisen Ahubudu?

When our class mate and close friend Ranjith Rodrigo passed away in 1953, at the age of 15, in Lower 6th C, Ahubudu made a moving eulogy at the Mt Lavinia Cemetery that was something like the following.
"Malak pipeegena aaweya. Male`hi natta kaduneya. Mala parawee giyeya. Namuth, apa pera aethi mala sirurata api aachaara karamu".

One mala was with a Danthaja Layanna and the other was with a Murthaja Layanna that made a difference to the meaning of the two words. I was stunned by the way he used the two words to bring out a profound meaning. Tears welled into my eyes. I still do not know how he died. His body was found on the beach one morning almost opposite the college office and Rev. Yin’s residence.

I found the following phrase in the STC article on Arisen Ahubudu and was surprised. “we respect our teachers, specially the good oncs” Thank God that we had good English Teachers in college.

Last edited by sriyanj; 19-08-16 at 01:01 PM.
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Old 19-05-15, 11:46 PM
sriyanj sriyanj is offline
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Default A Teacher Most Rare and Extraordinaire

Arisen Ahubudu
A Teacher Most Rare and Extraordinaire

Today is World Teachers' Day. I consider myself blessed on a day like
this because I can name many a teacher who epitomized the noble
profession of teaching, especially at a time when teachers have
refused to mark Advanced Level papers and held students to ransom, it
is with both sadness and pride that I write about Mr. Arisen Ahubudu;
a teacher who is unique and deserve the highest honour on World
Teachers' Day. My pride stems from the fact that at St. Thomas'
College (STC) Mount Lavinia we were fortunate to have had him as a
teacher. My sadness is caused by the fact that teachers of today have
failed to honour this profession like Mr. Ahubudu did.

Recently, I met Mr. Arisen Ahubudu at a function in Dehiwala,
instantly I bowed down to worship him, someone who did not understand
that I actually worshipped him asked me why I went so low to greet him
in the traditional Sri Lankan way ,I had to correct her and say that I
really worshipped him because he was my teacher. Very few people know
that Mr. Ahubudu was a teacher at STC, you might even think to
yourself that this Sinhala scholar may not have suited the College
culture. Wrong! He was in fact a guiding factor in instilling the
College traditions in us. In a teaching career which spanned over 40
odd years a good 27 years was spent at S.T.C.

Mr. Ahubudu taught from grade 7 to Ordinary Level classes, to me he
was like no other. His style of teaching was what we call 'out of the
box' today, as soon as he enters the class room he draws pictures
across the black board, the pictures included figures of kings, stupas
and different ancient scenarios. With these pictures, which he drew
under two minutes, he was able to draw our attention to him. He was an
excellent artist and his illustrations were lively and intriguing.
Then he would relate the story pertaining to the drawing, most often
the stories were about a king or something from our history. He told
us about Kings such as Dutugemunu and Dhatusena and their dedication
to the country, religion and the people. His stories also included
ancient cultivation practices, irrigation schemes and the commitment
of the ancient leaders of our country. The stories which lasted for
about six to seven minutes touched our minds and hearts creating a
deep sense of affection and pride towards our language, culture and
country. He did not ever have to shout at us to get our attention. His
mild mannerisms and gentle way of addressing us together with his
exemplary appearance made us want to listen to him. Imagine a
classroom full of teenage boys taking an interest and listening to
historical stories and encounters. Looking back, I feel that he was
the one who sowed the very first seeds of patriotism in our minds. His
vision on patriotism was all about being community minded. The heroes
of his stories epitomized this vision. Our forefathers who were the
main characters of the stories he narrated always placed country
before self whether they went to war, made stupas, had trading with
other countries or developed irrigation systems. He was able to strike
that fine balance in his stories by highlighting the exemplary
character traits of these heroes and heroines and not just giving a
false sense of pride
of being Sinhalese. Even when he told us stories about the fight
against the British Empire, he instilled no anger or animosity in our
minds, he knew his audience was hundred percent teenagers, boys of a
very impressionable age, so he was careful not to allow us to
misconceive the idea of nationalism. He ensured that we never became
'lable patriots'; citizens who would call them patriots yet act
contrary to the supreme notion of patriotism. He also introduced the
concept of farming for self sustenance to us, this was the time that
Mrs. Sirimavo Bandaranaike's government was promoting Sri Lanka
produce and Mr. Ahubudu's contribution was immense in this regard.
Once again he showed us our duty and responsibility towards the
country's future.

I have been guided by many disciplinarians in my life, but none was
gentler than Mr. Ahubudu. I still wonder how he commanded attention
and respect, kept the students quiet and still stole our hearts and
minds without ever having to be strict with us. He was a different
type of character; non threatening and soft spoken but extremely
effective as a teacher. I cannot recall a single day when he punished
us. He addressed each of us as 'oba' ('you' in its mildest and most
respectful form), there was no necessity to send anyone to the Warden
or give any sort of punishment. The reason was not that we were great
students but because he was a great teacher; great because in his
presence all the students behaved well.

How can I ever forget the 'sloka' (Pali and Sanskrit stanzas) through
which he imparted deep philosophy to us? I still recall those stanzas
from my memory effortlessly thanks to Mr. Ahubudu. These stanzas
simply taught us the way to live in this world. He always gave us much
more than the syllabus or the prescribed subject matter. Today, a
teacher will not go beyond the subject matter for two reasons; one is
because he or she would not know anything more than their own subject,
the other is that they do not care that much about the students. Mr.
Arisen Ahubudu went above and beyond his line of duty to give us more.
Come to think of it, he never had a 'line of duty', whenever he taught
something extra it was made so very interesting to us. We never made a
mockery of his stories or thought it was a waste of time. From the
moment we realized that this teacher was getting us on track to face
life challenges, we followed him. This also taught us to train our
minds to concentrate on one thing, a training which I find most
useful especially now. It was his guidance which helps many of us
today to move with people from all walks of life.

Punctuality they say is the politeness of princes. Mr. Ahubudu was a
right royal prince for he was always punctual, it was his way of
respecting others. He was simple, friendly and affectionate, his
priority was teaching and his personal life was secondary. Sadly, for
present day teachers that priority order has been reversed. Today the
teachers work for a salary where as teachers like Mr. Arisen Ahubudu
taught and were paid for their work. Undoubtedly, the teachers of
today draw a very good salary, however, at the time Mr. Ahubudu taught
salary anomalies or personal benefits never came into the school
system. Perhaps they had certain disagreements with the education or
school authorities, but we never witnessed such disputes, even if
there were issues, I am sure the teachers would have brought them up
at different fora but NEVER at the cost of children's education. Like
the health sector, education sector too was considered noble and those
who were
engaged in both these areas of work understood and respected it.
What he wanted and what he dedicated his life for is to ensure that
the younger generation became citizens of worth. He was thus connected
to his students. What we have seen in the recent past is that
teachers' unions have cut off that umbilical cord between teacher and
student while the student is still a foetus, this has created a bad
precedence and a bad example to students, the untold damage of this
action is that it has destroyed the faith , children had in their
teachers and has paved the way to the destruction of the education
"service"; a word now alien to teachers.

Long years back a journalist asked Mr. Lalith Athulathmudali as he
assumed duties as the Minister for Education" when he has to take
decisions pertaining to education who should be the first priority",
Minister Athulathmudali responded "the students", the same person
asked what the second priority should be, and in a flash came the
answer 'the students', the person finally asked what the third
priority is, to which Mr. Athulathmudali said "the students', driving
a very clear message home; that there is only one priority in quality
education services. Mr. Arisen Ahubudu is also someone who understood
that well and rendered his dedicated service to many generations of
students. Sir, I thank you and salute you for the nobility you have
shown us and the humility with which you have taught us and wish you
health and happiness on world teachers' day; a day on which we
celebrate and appreciate teachers most rare and extraordinaire.

S.V.D. Kesarralal Gunasekera
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Last edited by sriyanj; 20-05-15 at 01:57 PM.
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