These few days which we are spending have become decisive not only for us but for the people of the entire world. The terrific and dreadful epidemic known as Covid-19, which is spreading across the globe, has already made all the people in the entire world frightful. Therefore, it seems that those who have faith in God are constantly remembering God. There is no way to know what the people, who do not have faith in God are thinking, and who they are thinking about, in a situation like this.
I am a devoted follower of His Holiness The Apostle Rohan Lalith Aponso, who lives in Our Lady of Katunayake’s Shrine, and a constant listener to what He teaches for our lives. These days my mind runs to past year 2019.
It should be noted here that His Holiness The Apostle Rohan Lalith Aponso is not a founder of a sect, a new Christian Church, or a group of followers. But most of us, including myself, voluntarily and according to our own free will, follow Him, and take part in His every Liturgical Celebration, every Homily, every Teaching. I always give first priority to listen to Him, even if I have a most important task to attend. There are others who do the same.
Except at an occasion of a Liturgical Celebration or a Homily of His Holiness The Apostle Rohan Lalith Aponso, devotees do not get opportunities to see Him at any other occasions, since He is living an inner life by frequent meditation and attaining trance. However, He is spending His life, distancing from human, because He does not need anyone’s assurance on human beings. If such a person lives among human, then it is certain that He is living in the manner Lord Jesus Christ has declared. That is, living as a Sheep among Wolves.
In one evening in November or December 2018, His Holiness The Apostle suddenly came to Holy Apostles Peter & Paul garden of Our Lady of Katunayake’s Shrine when I was attending to some work with few other officers. He came closer to us asking, are these boys working hard?” This accidental meeting with the Most Holy Apostle was indeed a blessed occasion for all of us.
Even today, we still remember the opportunity we had speaking with the Holy Apostle intimately. In response to a question from one of us, He answered. “Due to the ignorance of people they do not know what a Sin is. There is no any category of sin that changes from one religion to another. Some people hold a belief that there is a method existing for the followers of one religion to receive repercussion for the sins they commit, while the followers of another religion will receive forgiveness for the same sins they commit when they confess them verbally. Due to such beliefs, even though there is no such method, the destruction that will take place as a result of such beliefs, is a misfortune of human beings themselves.” Linking to it, the Holy Apostle further explained: “Repercussion is inevitable for any sin that a human commits. There is no Dharma Law that affects according to nationalities of various ethnic groups, religion and caste that divides human at birth. The Law of Dharma is common to all. Repercussion for sin is inevitable and common to all”. The Holy Apostle explained it with few examples.
At that fortunate meeting with the Holy Apostle held in the latter part of 2018, the Holy Apostle told us another matter. He said beginning from January 2019, He hopes to spend five to ten minutes on a ‘Health Lesson’ – where good and important health tips will be taught to face the future. He said if we get used to such habits, it will be useful for the future.
As His Holiness The Apostle Rohan Lalith Aponso said, He began a series of ‘Health Lessons’ at the monthly meetings from January 2019, He conducted this ‘Health Lesson’ until 23rd February 2020. Some days, during His Homilies, the Holy Apostle taught us Health Lessons at the end of the Homily as a 2nd part of His Homily. None of these Health Lessons were limited to five or ten minutes. Some days, the Holy Apostle continuously taught us for one and half to two hours, to explain how to stay healthy. I think He is not only taught us the unsafe health habits that no one else in the world is aware of, but also health habits that make it easier for the body to develop immunity.
The Holy Apostle pointed out to us that the things that certain people eat and drink by following the trend will damage the body organs that have to be protected. He requested us not to think the things that our favourite players, actors and actresses eat and drink which are shown on television, are good for our bodies also. I recall, in few instances, He requested, only those who listen to Him should keep in mind certain things that He said and to live accordingly. As Lord Jesus Christ had said, His Holiness The Apostle lives as a Sheep among the wolves. Therefore, He had reasons to say so, and He has also explained the reasons.
When I see what Holy Apostle said then, is fitting with what is happening today, and how they fit in with each other, I feel, how many good things He has taught us.
One day, the Holy Apostle, not only told us an exercise of inhaling and exhaling and asked us to do that breathing exercise daily, which will strengthen the respiration process in our body, but also made us to do that breathing exercise practically, which is the power for our existence. I remember how He taught us to take a breath, hold the breath, count the precise time which we can hold the breath, and then to exhale slowly. When I recall the way He taught this, I think He prepared us in time to face this catastrophe. Many who listened to Him recall these days, the advice the Holy Apostle gave us in a series of Homilies named ‘Health Lesson’ throughout last year 2019.
A thing that His Holiness The Apostle Rohan Lalith Aponso said one day has penetrated my mind. I am constantly reminded of what He reflected. Anyone who wisely listens to His Homilies will have something to think about. Among them, this reflection of His Holiness The Apostle which I am going to tell you, makes me not only to think freshly but also to exercise with caution on a daily and regular basis. I know it is same for the most of us who listened to Him then.
As I recall, He made this statement on 28 December 2019. On that day, His Holiness The Apostle Rohan Lalith Aponso said: “What happens to us after death? Various people have diverse answers to this question. Many answers are based according to the beliefs of the religions, and trusting what is taught by the leaders of various religions. These religions that teach these factors, which are trusted by their followers, are not the religions that understood these factors by finding it out and determined what has to be followed. These religions have included you as a follower of that religion because your parents are also followers of that religion from their birth. Your parents have included you as a follower of that religion on their own consent, without your own free will, because they are belonging to that religion. However, you are listening to me now sitting in front of me. If you believe there is life after death, and if you have a hope on that, don’t wish to be born in this earth after death. Of all the planets in the universe, this Earth planet is the best place for human to live. Of this earth, the best and most suitable block of land for human life is surrounded by the Sea. It is called ‘Sri Lanka’ which is surrounded by the sea. In the past it was called ‘Ceylon’. But the earth has now been turned unsuitable for human life by humans themselves. In this earth, the block of land called ‘Sri Lanka’, which is suitable for humans to live has been destroyed. If someone is looking at the planet Earth from an outer planet, he will be shocked to see the devastation caused to the Earth as well as to the block of land called ‘Sri Lanka’. If a punishment has to be given, it will be done inevitably for them to reform. Due to these factors, I say to you, if you believe in life after death and hoping for it, do not wish to be born in this earth after your death. There are precious heavenly worlds where you can be born. Do meritorious deeds well. Hold Dharma, not the religion. You can go to a precious heavenly world better than this earth.”
How serious is this statement of His Holiness The Apostle Rohan Lalith Aponso, the Noble Spiritual Leader, who was born in this era for our own fortune. Isn’t Nature now teaching the truth of it to everyone in this earth?
Suren Chathuranga Fernando