Nonegenarian Aslin gets Master’s Degree
Vithanage Leelawathi Aslin Dharmaratne, who is ninety-seven years old, was able to obtain her Master’s degree in Buddhist Studies held this year by the Postgraduate Institute of Pali Buddhist Studies of the Kelaniya University.
She was also the oldest student in this university.For this Master’s degree consisting of seven subjects, she studied Pali Nikaya Buddhist Thoughts – Analysis and Commentary, Buddhist Art and Architecture 11 (Sri Lanka) Buddhist Psychotherapy, Buddhist Economic Philosophy, Theravada Tradition – History and Dhamma Matters, Buddhist Ethics – Concepts and philosophical interpretation, research methodology and elaboration were the subjects she sat for.
She had also compiled an investigation paper on the past lifestyle reflected in the wood carvings of the Embekka temple as the extended essay research topic.
At the age of 94, Aslin Dharmaratne passed the Tripitaka Dharma and Pali language test conducted by the Vidyodaya University.
She had passed the oriental initial, middle, and final exams while taking care of six girls and facing life.She started her career as a notary and was the first woman from Sri Lanka to pass this exam in 1952. She married a notary in 1962 and moved to Nawalapitiya from Horana.
In 1970, her husband died suddenly and since that day she has faced life and raised six female children.
Today, all those children are holding very high positions and she says that she is engaged in education in this way even when she is growing old, in search of spiritual healing. She does not only sewing but painting, journalism and farming, as hobbies, even today. This ninety-seven-year-old mother has also started writing a novel as her latest task of work. Also, she writes academic articles by referring to books.