Sri Lanka's secret is her village culture. Nobody can cross this labyrinth without initiation. This is hard to attain, since Lanka clothes her secrets in hidden symbolic meaning. We call it ingiya or theravili.
The threshing floor was our school, with wisdom passing from one worker to another, one generation to another. The tractor has broken up this institution.
The watch hut was another learning ground. Listening to stories near the hearth as infants, we learned survival.
The ancient cities Anuradhapura and Polonnaruwa are no more. They lie in ruins, largely of interest to tourists and students of monuments. However, puranagamas, composed of a cluster of womblike earthen dwellings, existed long ago and continue today as a living tradition.
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