Special Post – Pope Francis Visit to Sri Lanka 2015

Deviating from Travel & Documentary, today I thought of sharing a historical event currently happening in Sri Lanka.Pope Francis has arrived in Sri Lanka as a part of his 6 days Asian tour and he will stay in the country from 13th to 15th of January 2015.

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A banner displalyed in the Streets of Colombo in Celebration of Pope Francis visit to Sri Lanka

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People started to gather in the streets and celebrate the visit of Pope Francis to Sri Lanka

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Securities were tightened at the Archbishops house in colombo

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Students belong to Muslim ethnicity happily waiting to welcome Pope Francis in the streets of Colombo

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Large crowd awaits in Colombo – Sri Lanka to welcome Pope Francis

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Pope Francis looking at the crowd in Colombo – Sri Lanka

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Pope Francis looking at the crowd in Colombo – Sri Lanka

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Pope Francis in his popemobile vechicle in Colombo Sri Lanka

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People looking through the fences around the archbishops house to get photographs of the deligates visited with pope Francis

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A church at the shore

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From 1580, when the first church was built in Jaffna, by the Portuguese-the Christianity started to flourish in the peninsula.Many people were converted into christianity and sooner it became a religion to be followed by most of the people in the land, second to Hinduism.Due to the geography of Jaffna it was easy to access it by ships and boats, and it is obvious that christianity is being followed by most of the fishing communities at the coastal stretch of the region.Beautiful churches can be seen everywhere, at the beautiful locations- spreading religious harmony in the region.

Kooththu – An Ancient Tamil Tradition

‘Kooththu’ is a traditional Tamil cultural art form that is practiced in Sri Lanka mainly in Jaffna & Batticaloa districts.It is a mixture of dances and drama sequences.Performers were trained by ‘Kooththu masters’ (அண்ணாவியார்).With the emergence of the modern era ,these centuries old ancient art-forms are now at the risk of extinction.See more images at my official site www.theasianpictures.com.

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A face makeup being applied to a Kooththu performer in Batticaloa – Sri Lanka.

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A young kooththu performer dressed-up as a prince.Future existence of ‘kooththu’ lies on these young volunteers from the rural villages.Certain schools in the Batticaloa district now have implemented curriculum for the after-school training of this ancient art form.

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A kooththu performer dressed as a king is showing an aggresive stance.The trainer (kooththu master) usually stands at the center along with his team.They sing together, cheer-up the performers and even help the actors when the usual make-up faults happen.

 

 

A Fisherman in Batticaloa lagoon

I recently heard of an unique fishing method followed by few fisherman in Batticaloa lagoon.Out of curiosity i decided to embark on a journey one fisherman takes daily.

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63 years old Raju starts his work at 5.45am every day – Till 9 am he travels around the lagoon collecting the fishes he caught last night with the boxes made out of metal nets,a unique way of fishing which you will encounter in this lagoon.

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Foods made of rice,flour,sea weeds are kept inside the cage,to eat which,the fishes come inside the trap and never return.
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From the shallow waters to the deep part of the lagoon in the middle,Raju have made traps.This is somewhere in the middle of the deep lagoon,where he tries to take out the trap.He marks the area with a long stick,which often disappears if large amount of water comes from the sea during night.However this man with 43 years of experience can find out the places at easily.

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That was a happy day for this fisherman.A great catch.That will earn him around 2000 rs today.

Sigiriya Rock Fortress – Sri Lanka

Sigiriya Rock Fortress is often considered a 8th wonder of the world is a famous landmark in Sri Lanka.The rock was modified into a rock fortress by King Kashyappa an ancient ruler of the country.This is the place where you can see the magnificent wall frescoes of Sigiriya depicting beautiful female figures, which closely resembles the Ajanta frescoes in India.Now this place is one of the most traveled location in the country by the foreign tourists as well as almost all the locals.

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Sigiriya Rock Fortress as seen from a forest in the surrounding.

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A little girl walking towards Sigiriya Rock Fortress – World Heritage site in Sri Lanka

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Ancient painting of beautiful ladies with flowers in hands at sigiriya rock fortress caves – Unesco world heritage site in Sri Lanka

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Group of school children standing at the edge of top most part of Sigiriya Rock Fortress with the beautiful landscape in the background at dusk- a Unesco World Heritage site in Sri Lanka

Polonnaruwa World Heritage Site – Sri Lanka

Polonnaruwa is the second most ancient kingdom of Sri Lanka and now a world heritage site.It has numerous ruins of the ancient city still preserved which shows the ability and knowledge of the architects who lived in this lands 1000 years before.Polonnaruwa kingdom had the influence of both Sinhala and Tamil cultures which is proved by the ruins of buildings belong to both cultures.The place is now a famous tourist destination in Sri Lanka.

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Polonnaruwa kiri viharaya

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Samadhi Buddha / seated buddha statue gal vihara

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Moonstone carvings in vatadage – polonnaruwa

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Medical trough in ancient hospital of polonnaruwa

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Gal Vihara reclining buddha statue

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Guard stones infront of pabalu vehera

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Entrance of Lankathilaka vihara

Hindu Festivals in Jaffna , Sri Lanka

Jaffna , where the Tamils inhabit the most in Sri Lanka, has many famous Hindu symbols in the forms of historical buildings,temples,Traditional Cultures.With the abundant number of Hindu Temples, one can witness Hindu festivals all around the year mainly the mid part.The style of presentation of this festivals are different region to region and according to the tradition being followed by the respective worshiping places.

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pungudutivu during the Festival season usually has harsh sunlight and temperature.These devotees enduring so much of pain and exhaustion by rolling on the ground behind the temple cart ,with only purpose of pleasing and showing their love on the Goddess Amman in spiritual ways, need to be kept cool by pouring water on them.

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During the Kannakai Amman Temple Cart festival , worshipers pulling the temple cart around the temple.

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A priest sitting inside the moving temple cart.He will receive the offerings made by the people below and worship the goddess using it for the well being of the people offered it.