Monday, September 30, 2019

Who was Shamsul -Retroactive part three.

Who was Shamsul - Part three.

Life took a turn for Shamsul when his late wife fell ill with what was later diagnosed as Alzheimer with rapid dementia. She was later sent back to the United States to be cared for and Shamsul found himself having to raise and put through secondary schooling for his two children. He moved to Penang where he found employment as a Ferry Terminal Supervisor for the Jerejak Resort and SPA. He managed the terminal for almost three years before he decided to move on to a better position where he became a lecturer at the Equator Academy. This lasted for a very short time due to his inability to cope with the management of the academy . At the same time while he was working as a lecturer Shamsul started hanging out at the University Sains Malaysia, Museum and Gallery in Penang. There he met and befriended the Director of the Museum, Hasnul J. Saidon who organized and curated Sahmsul's first solo exhibition in his home town. The show entitled HUMIND was a success and well received by the local art scene.

From then on Shamsul went on to have a few solo as well group art shows establishing himself as an artist in Penang. Shamsul spent more than ten years working out of the Museum unpaid.However he earned his minimal income through giving art classes and selling his works at street markets. He also earned minimum wage as a helper at a friend's  auto air conditioning workshop selling scrap metals. To date Shamsul is still painting and doing odd jobs for his survival and with his two children are employed the burden for survival has lessen. Since 2012, Shamsul has been going off and on to an organic farm in rural Kedah State where he did volunteer work giving moral support to a fledgling farming community called SRI LOVELY or Lintang Oraganic Valley. Today this community has grown into a worldwide venture where students came from all over the world to live and study all about sustainable organic rice farming.

Such is briefly who Shamsul was and still is upon looking back at his track record of a rolling stone that had gathered very little moss worth in life. Shamsul has a strong belief that life is all about relationships and experiences and throughout his career life he had done just that; to be able to have been there and done that. For every job he had and every place he had been, the main intention was to experience and touch the lives of those who he had dealt with. Through work and various social activities, Shamsul made it a practice to discover his weaknesses and strength, through flaws and errors, accomplishments and success. He reflected his ways through the teachings of the past masters such as the Prophet of Allah, the Buddha, the life and teachings of Jesus. Lao Tzu and Chuang Tzu, the Tibetan masters such as Marpa and Milarepa, the wisdom of the Muslim saints such as The SheikhAbdul Kadir Al Jilani and Muhyideen Ibn Arabi. the great Hindu masters such as Sri Ramakrishna and Ramana Maharshi, Shamsul had made it his life long study into the human nature, his as well as others. The school of Zen Buddhism has the greatest impact upon his spiritual growth and till up to date he still sits in Zazen everyday and every chance he gets.

"Knowing others is wisdom, knowing yourself is Enlightenment."
Lao Tzu.





 

    

Who was Sjamsul? Part two

Bahari
Part Two
Who was Shamsul Bahari
Shamsul met and married his wife and had two children as a result in 1990. The next three years saw him becoming a 'homemaker' as he spent most of his time baby sitting two children while his wife was the bread winner.. These few years spent looking after two preschoolers was an awakening experience for Shamsul and a comment made by his first son who was then a student at the San Jose State University sums this up, " Dad, when i told my Ice Hockey team mates that my Dad is a 'house husband and babysitter, they said that it is the toughest job for a man to do." My son was and still is the goal keeper for ice hockey teams at the time he was playing for an FBI team. This was also the time when computer and home offices was becoming a lifestyle and many chose to be with their children at home and hang out at the children's parks sharing thoughts and ideas while they watched the children play.

Sometime at the end of 1994 Shamsul and his family moved to Sendai. Japan. There through the outreach program affiliated with the Pacific Outreach and UC Berkeley, Mrs. Baharii was engaged as a English as Second Language Instructor, (ESL) and Shamsul went on to continue being a homemaker and baby sitter. The silver lining that presented itself to Shamsul was the fact that he was able to spend a llot of time at the, Miyagi Museum of Fine Arts no far from his home every free time he had. Here he was able to carry out all sorts of creative works from Printmaking, Nihongo or Japanese water color techniques, Sumi-e or Japanese black ink on hand made paper, which became his favorite medium then. In Sendai He was able to have held five solo exhibitions at various galleries in and around Sendai including one at the Miyagi Art Museum. He was also employed as an Art Instructor at Kawaijyuku Bunri a local Prep School for Architecture students. Life in Japan among the Japanese was an eye opener for Shamsul with regard to Japanese culture and work ethics, their love and respect for nature and their unconditional love for children. The three years spent in Sendai was the most productive times of his life as an artist.
In 1998, Shamsul with his family relocated to Malaysia his homeland and move till this day he often regrets as a mistake.His first employment upon return was as a Health and Safety officer fo a major construction company involve in the construction site for the Petronas Refinery along the East Coast State of Terengganu. Shamsul held this position for three years working for three major construction companies such as Ibai Bina Sdn. Bhd., Van Seumerren Romstar and Autoblast industril painting company. He was one of the highest paid Safety office on site at one time. It was here that Shamsul learned about Malaysia work ethic and how corruption was a major incentive for success and later when raising a complaint against the main contractor over a sewage issue Shamsul found himself dismissed for not being a 'Team player'. Disillusioned and fed up with the lies and corruption involved Shasul walked way without a fight and moved on to the next episode in his life.
To be Continued

Who was Shamsul- Retrospective.

Who was Shamsul Bahari -Life of an Artist.
The works of Shamsul Bahari are in the collections of some prominent art galleries and collectors in Malaysia as well as abroad including the;
Penang State Art Gallery
University Sains Malaysia in Penang
Private Art Collectors in the United States, Japan, Dubai and Malaysia.

Shamsul graduated from the University of Wisconsin, Green Bay in Fine Arts with a 'self designed' degree in Fine Arts and interned for three years at the Miyagi Museum of Fine Arts in Sendai, Japan.
Shamsul has held numerous Solo Exhibitions in the US mostly in San Francisco and Green Bay, Wisconsin. Six Solo Exhibitions in the City of Sendai and a few in his home state of Penang, Malaysia.
Shasul has lived and traveled to many parts of the world including having lived for 21 years in the US and three years in Japan and over a year in Dubai. He has traveled as an artist to Europe, including Great Britain, Germany, Italy,and Switzerland and to South America including Colombia and Equador. In his travels he had met many great Masters and visited numerous Art Galleries as it was his favorite thing to do where he had learned and shared his talent as an artist and a versatile communicator.
Over the years during his travels Shamsul has kept an ongoing Art Journals in the form of drawings, sketches, photographs and notes of his art as well as personal thoughts and ideas about everything under the sun including, spiritual, philosophical as well as emotional feelings he call his, study towards self discovery. These journal has now culminated into his Blogging which is still ongoing and has over half a million hits from readers all over the world.
His Blog, Ramblings of the Cheeseburger Buddha or cheeseburgerbuddha.blogspot,com was started in 2005 and has more than 2000
entries to date.

Life Career.
In his llifelong carrer Shamsul has been a Medical Research assistant in the rural areas of Terengganu, East Malaysia under the Institute of Medical Research, (IMR) Malaysia assisting and American Doctor the late sixties. He later was employed by Bristow Helicopter Company when oil exploratoin was first carried out along the South China Seas carried out by Esso Exploration and Continental Oil Co, (CONOCO) which operated out of Huston, Texas. He later went on to work as a 'Roughneck' on board the Drilling vessel "The Discoverer 2" where he lasted for only a month. His next employment was as a tutor in English to the grand children of the Sultan of Terengganu, the late Sultan Ismail Nasseruddin Shah to whom he was also an occasional golf caddy.
Shamsul later in the early seventies moved back to his hometown in Penang and worked as a Sales Executive for Hagemyer Trading Co, a Dutch firm importing Japanese products such as NIVICO and Matsushita Appliances as well various Dutch and European products like Christian Dior and Houbigan cosmetics; he was the first Malay hired by the company in the sales department.

Shamsul met and married an American Lecturer who was teahing at the Institute of Technology Mara (ITM) while he was working in Penang and later moved to the United States with his wife and infant son. The family relocated to Green Bay, Wisconsin.where his former wife as from and his first job was at a tavern called Farr's Grove, located in Duck Cree, Brown Country. His job was to clean the bar and replenish it every morning.. Later he was hired as a Sweeper at the Brown County Arena and the Lambeau Field Home of the Green Bay Packers . Yet later on he was hired as a 'Boner' or meat cutter at the Green Bay Meats and Cold Storage and was fired after two years and was hired immediately by Peck Meat Packing of Milwaukee, Wisconsin doing the same job. After more than three years in the meat packing houses and a divorce, Shamsul decided to go to school.
In the late seventies till 1982 Shamsul was a University Student at the University of Wisconsin, Green Bay, (UWGB) where he was ablle to design his own Fine Arts Degree through a program called, "THe University Without Walls," a program initiated by the University of Wisconsin, Madison.He graduated with BA in 1982. While a student Shamsul was employed a a security Guard for J&J Security to pay for his school years. One of his posts as a security guard was to work at the Northwest Engineering Factory, one of the largest crane manufacturing companies in the US.
.In the same year upon graduation, Shamsul bought one way ticket to Alaska where became a Commercial Fisherman on board the Fishing Vessal, the ICELAND. He with three other crew members and the captain fished for Halibut in the Berring Seas out of the port at Sandpoint in the Aleutian Chain. Shamsul spent two years of his life in Sandpoint where he made more money selling paintings than fishing. While living in Sandpoint, Shamsul earned six credits from the University of Fairbanks for being involved in two plays directed by a teacher at the local high school.

Upon leaving Alaska where he was able to travel to Hong Kong, Thailand and Malaysia on vacation; he returned to Green Bay and spent over a year at the University Printmaking Studio where he did allot of printmaking at no cost to the University, he was the resident artist. The only artist allowed to sleep in the studio overnight courtesy of the security guards. .Sometime in the mid eighties .Shamsul left Wisconsin for good and landed in San Francisco with the intention of joining a Zen Buddhist Monastery..Later he spent two years as a Zen student at the Green Dragon Zen Buddhist Center at Green Gulch Farm on Star Route One, Sausalito,Marin County, California. There Shamsul earned his nickname as the 'Disrupter.'.The one who never really fitted in. At 'The Gulch', Shamsul worked on the organic farm and garden and the the general maintenance of the whole Green Gulch Valley. He was also exposed to the Monastic work practices like Zendo cleaning, working as a dish washer in the kitchen and other chores.
Upon completing two years of Zen practice, Shamsul almost found himself becoming a homeless on the streets of San Francisco had it not been for the help of a drug dealer friend who got to work for his friend at a family run company called H&H Ship Service and Environmental Company where he spent six years of his life. Later he was employed as a Produce Buyer for a company called Del Tomasso buying produce at the San Francisco night market and delivering the produce to the Supermarket in Oakland across the Bay..
To be Continued...
.. .


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Thursday, September 19, 2019

You cannot have your soap without burning down a few trees.

As a believer I would tend to believe that God is not too happy with how we are taking care of our Planet and the haze that is now becoming an annual affair is an indication of this Divine Piss off. It is a very minor show of piss off compared to many others that is presently happening in and around the globe. But off course that is me as a believer, one who is scared God's piss off mode and wishing that there is something or some ways that the situation can be averted because if this keeps on and when God raises His piss off mode to the next level it would be not nice at all. But we are humans no less and are not so easily moved by God or Gods so long as it does not affect us personally, like we have air conditioned houses and travel in cars with air conditioning and work in same air purified rooms, so why worry about a little inconvenience such as the toxic haze? Insha'Allah it will be gone in the next few days or when it rains , then all is forgotten and we are back in business.
Acid rain? What's that?

We cannot have an omelette without breaking a few eggs now can we? The people can cope and if they can afford it they can get a mask to wear like they did at those political rallies, what,s the big deal? It is not like everyone of them are dropping dead on the streets from breathing in some toxic smoke sent all the way from across the Straits. It is imperative that we clear the forest in order to grow our cash crop and in th long run it is the people that are going to benefit from this venture, so what is there to moan and groan about? Some are worried that we are killing the wildlife in the process  and there are those who even has the idea that we are destroying the habitats of spirits and jinns and what not! In this day and age and they are worried about spirits in the forest being made homeless! OH well, what if we do? Tell these unseen entities to move into the cities where life is much more better and more for them to have fun with, they will fit right in with the crazies and the homeless, no problem. 

Bottom line, we at the corporate levels are more concern with our business expansion and to date we are doing just fine. We have employees who are very well paid and living the life and we promote so many public welfare program to help the needy and so 
what is there to gripe about? So what if a few die here and there due to respiratory complications or a few wild life species have been brought to extinction in the process of our expansion, these are just collateral damages for the greater good. The future of palm oil is at stake here and we want to stay in competition in the market so that Malaysians can swim in palm oil  and not to worry about their cooking oil being expensive.






The Haze- What is sad about it..

With haze comes depression and those already struggling with this ailment feels even more agony especially those with respiratory problems. Looking out my window i could hardly even see the State Mosque which is hardly a kilometer away from my view. Yes somewhere in Sumatra, Indonesia they are having a bonfire to welcome much larger plantations all in the name of sustainable economic growth. 
Air pollution occurs when harmful or excessive quantities of substances including gases, particles, and biological molecules are introduced into Earth's atmosphere. It may cause diseases, allergies and even death to humans; it may also cause harm to other living organisms such as animals and food crops, and may damage the natural or built environment. Both human activity and natural processes can generate air pollution.
Indoor air pollution and poor urban air quality are listed as two of the world's worst toxic pollution problems in the 2008 Blacksmith Institute World's Worst Polluted Places report.[1] Outdoor air pollution alone causes 2.1[2][3] to 4.21 million premature deaths annually.[4][5] According to the 2014 World Health Organization report, air pollution in 2012 caused the deaths of around 7 million people worldwide,[4] an estimate roughly echoed by the International Energy Agency.[6][7]

 
Malaysia and Singapore suffers the brunt of the haze that is caused by the fires form across the Straits of Malacca and it is ironic that these fires are the result of investments to grow oil palm and whatever else that spins money in the global market and a few Malaysian companies are being accused to be among the culprits.

Activists and experts have long identified the problems hindering the government’s efforts at preventing forest fires. These include ineffective enforcement of fines for companies found guilty in court of setting fires; lack of coordination between government agencies responsible for various aspects of fire prevention and mitigation; and lack of transparency over a government program to restore degraded peatland across the country.
Activists and experts have long identified the problems hindering the government’s efforts at preventing forest fires. These include ineffective enforcement of fines for companies found guilty in court of setting fires; lack of coordination between government agencies responsible for various aspects of fire prevention and mitigation; and lack of transparency over a government program to restore degraded peatland across the country.
Bambang Hero Saharjo, the Indonesian government’s chief expert witness in its prosecutions of companies found setting fires on their concessions, said one of the problems was that local governments were not serious about tackling forest fires, given the lack of funding allocated for the issue. Each district government often only allocates around $2,000 a year to fight forest fires, he said.-
Mongabay  Hans Nicholas Jong.

 In the meantime those affected by the toxic haze are forced to live with it wearing gas masks and closing down schools wondering when it will all end. It is in human nature to sit, wait and see what happens next and only to raise the red flag when shit hits the fan, when human fatality becomes a reality. It is beyond imagination of what the animals and the insects and even fishes must be going through in this yet one more man made catastrophe in order to serve his purpose. We talk of conservation of the species like the tigers and rhinos, the orangutans and various others, what a sham when it comes down to it we  have committed a genocide of other species just as it is happening to the Amazon. Without doubt, the plants and trees are the prime victims of this scourge, on top of loosing our large trees for timber we are also loosing plants that are our source of medicinal products. We have displaced many who had made the forest their domicile and deprived them of their livelihood. All these for what? Palm Oil! So the large corporations can reap the profits and the rich still gets richer by it. 

It is sad!






Thursday, September 12, 2019

WallahuAllam! Only God Knows...

And it is said that silence is golden, however one wonders whether to seek silence within or remain silent without or both are equally golden. I believe in the fact every now and then one has to let out a roar both ways, a roar of shattering velocity that can be heard and felt throughout the universe of one's existence. This is the 'Lion's Roar  of the of the Buddha, a loud and clear message sent out direct from the center of one's being out of anger or pleasure no matter. "Go and shout it on the mountain, over the hills and everywhere, to let my people go!" Humanity is in the grips of Greed, Hate and Ignorance and i cannot say this enough and we need to break loose from the bondage of these three illnesses before we are broken beyond repair, beyond healing. Enough is enough! We are nobody's fool and are place on this earth not to become grist for the mill or cork and screw for someone's ultimate dream machine. NO! We are created in the Divine image and believe it or not we are here to fulfill our own destiny not that of any other superior minds or beings.

People of the Book, especially the Muslims lives out life with the emphasis on the afterlife or the eternal life hereafter and most that I have come to realize takes this to the extent that this life on this plane, this physical existence id negligible or of no account. It is a wonder why most Muslim nations are backwards or lacking in every aspect even if their country like Malaysia has all that it takes in resources to become if not rich and well developed, at the very least, well sustainable.  I feel that the people of the Book have become overly religious and the emphasis on the rites and rituals has overtaken the wisdom of living spiritually as taught by the prophets. No doubt our presence on this earth is of limited time, however no matter how limiting our time it is highly imperative that we live it well, productively and for the benefit of the whole,(of God's) creation. Only a highly spiritual mind would not hate, of become greedy and act in ignorance where a religious mind has no guarantee of these A religious mind is infested with right and wrong, with who  deserves more or less, whose God is greater whose ways are more equitable towards attaining to heaven or hell.

It is said in the Quran somewhere that  God ,(Allah) had created man and jinn alike for the sake of worshiping Him. Hence the Muslims are very much into the rites and rituals more so than any other faith or religions on this earth, I see nothing wrong this except when a man spends a whole of money to perform , the Haj two or three times in his lifetime simply because he can afford it or a man take set upon himself to judge and punish others because the other is not doing what he does like it is his God given right to do so. Allah is to me all Merciful and Compassionate and All Loving, this is my Allah, my God, not a vindictive and wrathful deity out to make life as miserable for His servants here and hereafter. I worship Him by servitude towards His creations, I serve Him every way and everywhere I see the need for Love and Understanding, for Care and Compassion, I worship Him even when I am yelling bloody murder at the world in my times of digression and weakness, I worship Him out on my Love and Understanding and not out of fear or   favor for heaven or hell. I was created in His Image and not the image of man. I hold His Divinity as sacrosanct within me in the sanctity of the temple in my heart. 

WallahuAllam...only God knows.

















Wednesday, September 11, 2019

Homage to Bruno Manser- Laki Penan.

A shift in my topic from the usual spiritually related subject to a local scene of the plight of the Indigenous folks of the Malaysian forest has seen a drop of reader's interest which dropped from almost 400 hits earlier to 91 yesterday. What does it tells me? It has become a trend that spiritually related topics attracts more readers especially those from the East including Russia and a decline of those in the West like the United States, Canada an the European countries. Over the years ever since i started Blogging the trend has been the same and it gets more and more distinct of late as though the West has become less and less moved by any spiritual practices or ideas. I write primarily to inform and remind myself of where i stand at the present moment in my life and not worry who reads or who does not, however it has become an interesting phenomena to make this observation of  what ticks the collective human mind/consciousness.

A part of my intention in making my last entry related to a local interest of the plight of a tribe the rainforest of Malaysia is to share how one can put one's self discovery into practice for the benefit of the whole. In this case it is to raise the awareness of the few like minded people towards what is happening in and around the country that deserves our attention if not compassion. I posted the writing on to Face Book and got about twenty hits with a few comments. Including a comment that was heartening from an artist friend;

  • Jeganathan Ramachandram This is true living bro...to feel and want to do the least we can. This is true existence of creative people...to voice out and you have the words that move emotions...wish one day we would work together and be part of an art community that not only paints to sell but create awareness about life
  If asked what good it is all these effort towards self discovery or even having a Blog or to what use can it be, the above is one answer. If i can move the heart and feelings of one man, I am sure I have made a difference, II have made a contribution towards my society, raised a sense of awareness towards those gets hardly a notice from the rest of the nation much less the world and these forlks in the forest are facing extinction no less. Perhaps at my age I may not have the energy to act more aggressively like what the Swiss activist Bruno Manser did for the Native tribes of Sarawak in fighting off the loggers and the powers that be. 


  1. A moving homage to Bruno Manser - YouTube

    www.youtube.com/watch?v=LRh-T3d_R6g
    17 years ago, Bruno Manser, a Swiss campaigner for the rights of the Penan nomads of Sarawak, Malaysia, disappeared without a trace. A new film tells his story. (SRF/swissinfo.ch) 

    Can one man make a difference? Bruno Manser has proved that the love for a people in need of help is worth his life sacrificed and his name will be a part of the Penan tribe for the rest of their history.  






Tuesday, September 10, 2019

Livng Unconsciously.

An article posted by the investigative reporter Edith Mirante of the Gaurdian on the fate of the aboriginal tribe, the Batek, (Bataks?) in the northern central rainforest of Malaysia caught my attention this morning and it hurts deep inside. What the Americans did to the Native American, the The Australians did to the Aborigines of Australia and now the Brazilian Government are doing to the Amazon tribes, we are doing it to our dinginess people; it is genocide look at it whichever way you want.We, Malaysians so proud of our ancestral heritage are oblivious towards those whose heritage and traditional way of life we are burying under toxic waste in the name of economic development and it takes yet another foreigner to paint this gloomy picture for us The forest people of Malaysia are fighting for their very existence against major corporations that has hacked away at our forests to make way for plantations and so forth, do we care? See how many read this article much less comment on it.

We can raise hell about deporting a foreign preacher or whether to agree or disagree about a  calligraphy writing in schools among other issues but are blind to what is happening to the people whose very lives are at stake. What have become of us that we are so insensitive and hypocrites when it comes to our choice of priorities.  The true native of this land has become less than pariahs where we as Malaysians are concern myself included and there is no excuse for it except the economic growth that we are sucked into  accepting as a necessity. We have become a nation of enough is never enough we would sell our mothers if it helps to make that extra buck.We are in the process of eradicating our forests, the flora and fauna that we are proud of, claiming to have one of the oldest rain forest on the Planet and at the same time we are wiping out the very guardians of these forests. Do we care? Hell no! Still. money talks and bullshit walks is our motto.


"A fever. Shallow breathing. Racked by coughing. In May and June 2019, at least 15 Batek indigenous people of mainland Malaysia’s Kelantan state died with such symptoms. Some perished in the rainforest that had always sheltered their people, others in a settlement surrounded by oil palm plantations. A few passed away in hospital after the health crisis became known to the government." - Edith Mirante -New Mandal.

 
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Monday, September 09, 2019

And the rambling must go on.

Easier said than done. How does one maintain a day of complete sense of absolute awareness or consciousness given that one has a good handle of what these words even means. I just watched a video on Face Book a a guy ranting and raving about being fully alive and what it takes to do so and why we are afraid to do so. In this day and age one gets to see and hear just everyone having thoughts and views about how life works or how the mind works or why we are not livng to our fullest potential and so forth, it is inspiring especially coming from young adults setting out to find out what it is all about. I learn many lessons from these videos, however i find too that they are merely echos of what i had set out to discover for myself over the years as i kept this ongoing journal of my own journey towards self discovery. It seems like there are spiritual gurus growing up from all corners like mushrooms, like a sprouting of collective consciousness in individuals young and old sharing their life's experiences and helping others to do likewise.

No matter how serious or in depth these video gurus are in their quest towards what they preach in the effort bring and elevate human consciousness towards greater heights, it is encouraging to say the least, mush better than having more videos produced on how to play video games or what is the latest fad in fashion and food. With so much garbage being churned up in the Internet, any positive vibe thrown in towards the healing of our spirit and that of the planet is a welcome.  I believe in collective consciousness of the universe working through each and every soul human or otherwise that can become a strong antidote for our ailments. Every bit of research in any aspect of the human body, mind and spiritual development is major contribution in our effort to become united as a whole. The merging of all the sciences and spiritual schools from the ancient to the modern times is now  becoming a reality as the Internet helps to bring together our collective thoughts and aspirations. Our Collective consciousness may not be able to stop the fire raging in the Amazon forest but it might help to regrow the forest.

Chasing Rainbows.

I believe we cheat our own immortality by clinging on to life, our attachment to this that we accept as being alive for it is in letting go that we become closer to being immortals. This thought came to me upon waking up from my nap and I am still grappling as to what it really means. However deep down I feel that there is a whole lot of truth in this statement or revelation if I might call it that. Clinging on to life may not be just a matter of survival or making it ahead of others materially or financially or having it all in short; clinging on to life is the notion that all that we see, hear and experience is real. It is said ib Buddhism that nothing that is impermanent in nature is real and everything subjected to change is a creation of the mental formation. The sooner we come to understand the nature of our true being, our 'Unborn Buddha Nature', the better we would come to grips with our sense of immortality; the fact that we were unborn and deathless even if the body is subjected to death and decay.

“They that love beyond the world cannot be separated by it. Death cannot kill what never dies." (was never born) ~ Williams Pe

 "Hanya Allah yang Maha wujud," is a Malay saying in Islam which means, only God exist and thus the Oneness of God. juFor in Islam there is no two, which in essence there is no me and God but only God. Hence in Islam is the principle of 'Fana' or the absence of a being that is called 'I' just as in Buddhism, the Buddha uttered in His final moments, "I am no more." I believe it our clinging on to this sense of 'I' to be our reality that is the cause for our inability to see or taste immortality in this life time and many lifetimes in the past, The evolution of the human spirit from a state of ignorance to enlightenment is to attain towards this understanding of the fact that I do not exist , what does exist is a state of absolute consciousness of being. With the death of the physical body and mind the absolute consciousness is liberated and merges back into the Source, the Universal or Divine or God or by whatever name you would choose to call it; into the One Unity. 

Hence one has to die in order to taste immortality just as lead has to give up its nature as lead in order to become gold or a pupa has to cease to exist to become a butterfly. Man has to stop clinging to his 'I' identity in order that he may become free from the bonds of this physical and material state of existence that primarily is the creation of th mind and in essence just an illusion or Maya. How does one attain this? This is the journey that i have chosen to discover for myself just as the Buddha did for Himself. The seventy years of my existence in this life would amount to nothing if i do not at the very least have a glimpse of the truth of the matter about my life and death. I would have lived life merely as an illusion chasing after rainbows and hoping for the pot of gold at the very end. I do not desire heaven nor do i desire for hell, I only wish to return to the Source of where i came from before i was conceived by my parents. I have been endowed with intelligence and consciousness, dressed with Love and Compassion to serve as a Bodhisattva for the enlightenment of my fellow beings and as such I will keep on digging deepr into my heart and spirit to discover my true nature; my Unborn Buddha Nature.





 





 

 

Sunday, September 08, 2019

Have a Matra will travel.

 A retrospective. As I was driving along Highway 666 between the town of Gallup and Durango located on the border between New Mexico and Colorado alone in the middle of the night, the thoughts that went through my mind was mostly that I was insane. It did not really mattered then what happened or could have happened to me and that death was the only thing that could stop me from getting to Denver, Colorado, my destination. It was sometime in the late 70s or early 80s and I was in my thirties a student at the University of Wisconsin in Green Bay. I have written in my Blog of this event in my life a few times in the past and thus will not dwell into the detail of it except that I never made it beyond the town of Durango that rainy night, due to heavy snow I had to make an U-Turn and headed back for Albuquerque, New Mexico. Why I am telling this episode is because upon reflection tonight I realized of what my mind was capable of in facing challenges when not inhibited by thoughts of fear or defeat.  

"I am Whole, Complete and Perfect, Strong and Powerful, Loving and Compassionate, Harmonious and Happy! I can do what I will to do. Isha'Allah, so help me God." This was and still is my mantra that had seen me through my younger adult life when I was more gregarious and rambunctious in my ways. I would recite this mantra to myself every morning upon waking up and night before i fall asleep and never doubting whether it worked or not for me. I adapted this mantra from a book called the 'Master Key' by Frank Haarnel, a book that I had taken with me from Malaysia to America when I left my country for the first time, it was my traveling companion back then along with the Quran a translation by Yusof Ali given to me by my cousin Zakaria. I realize how words have their powers and effect over my mind if repeatedly recited and put to practice as food for your thoughts and consciousness. I also finds out that chanting the names of God or the Budhhas or some Deities are not as effective as chanting words that have strong meaning and triggers positive consciousness in one's mind. These words are called auto suggestions to the mental state of the one doing this practice. What is there to loose by giving it a try, it is not umlike taking your vitamins for the body or saying your prayers for you soul.

 





 

Saturday, September 07, 2019

Rambling on....

One of my intentions in creating this Blog sometime in 2005? was to improve on my writingskills I dare not even say to become a writer and till this day I ams till trying to polish up on my delivery. I wish to, write a fiction one day and have even started on a few occasion somewhere in this Blog but gave up for lack of who knows what, perhaps i lack the skill of J.R.Tolkien, one of my favorite writers. It is not that I lack imaginations but I tend to mix up myself after a while the difference between fiction and reality and never seems to be able to connect the dots to make any progress. It is not like I lack things to write about especially based on my lifelong experience of which I am proud to say I have an ample amount of tales to pick from. I have watched enough movies and mini series to last three incarnations and by right I should be good at weaving a yarn or two by not, but no such luck. So here I am day in day out making this Blog postings of mundane and insignificant episodes of my uneventful daily existence with the hope that something would snap and I can write a novel or two before I kick the bucket.

A pipe dream? Perhaps. Then again did they not say that life itself is a dream that you never wake up from until it becomes a nightmare and leaves you gasping for breath before you realize that you were dreaming. It is tragic for many that they do not realize it even after the nightmare had passed, it all becomes a reality that they identify with as part of their personal existence. The whole of the physical realm is Maya or mind created phenomena and life is Lila or a play of hide and seek whereby the highest consciousness or Divine Consciousness indulge in its own self discovery. I am making an effort to reiterate the teachings of Advaita Vedanta primarily which exerts that we are all Brahman or the Supreme Reality as expounded in the Hindu Vedic Texts. I am not very well versed in the deeper thoughts of this Hindu texts, however i have been listening to many great Hindu Masters expounding these teachings throughout my adult life and am now beginning to feel the impact of its essence into my being. "I am the master of my Thughts an Consciousness ," has been one of my 'Mantras' that i keep repeating to myself ever since i came across the teaching of Swami Vivekanada on Raja Yoga. I had taken a small green hardcover copy of the Swami's teachings with me as my companion reading when I was travelling to Aalaska and the essence of the teachings had stuck with  me till this day.   

In the beginning these professions had become a conflict in my mind as I am a Muslim having been converted to Islam at the age of twelve. I , however persisted in reciting the mantra as a practice when i sit in meditation or before i go to sleep and upon waking up. It slowly became a part of my self affirmation as I grow into matured adulthood and the feeling of guilt that i may be transgressing the teaching of Islam dissipated as I began to understand the significance and power of this affirmation. It has infused into my consciouness the realization that I am not who or what I think I am and  helped to remove the ignorance that I am not much more than just an entity with a consciousness. It has opened my mind to higher and far greater recognition that I am indeed that master of my own destiny, that I am not at the mercy of existence but a captain of my own ship as i sail through this ocean of existence. My thoughts and consciousness are my tools of expression, the manifestation of my essence my primordial being, that which was and is my Buddha Nature as the Buddha expounded in His teachings. 

Throughout my Blog I have time and again mentioned this practice of 'self affirmation as a reminder especially when self doubts and confusion overwhelms me. The practice has helped to remove myself from getting trapped into the feeling of being at the mercy of 'fate', or external circumstances; I am the master and not the slave to my thoughts and emotions. I am the master of my body, speech and mind and these too are my tools and vehicle of my self expression in this life and as such it is my duty to keep them in good working condition throughout my life. Even in my moments of forgetfulness I am still being reminded of my status as I sit and ponder upon these teachings and the strength of their significance would uplift my being from doubts and despair; I am reminded of who or what I truly am, Tat Tvam Asi, I Am that, I Am. 


















 







Tuesday, September 03, 2019

Zeti Akhtar Aziz- An Ode to...

And it's 4;50am, did my meditation, a little stretching exercise, cleaned the dishes in the sink left overnight and played with the cat and now back on the computer to make another entry in my Blog while listening to, "The Damaged Brain Healing & Nerve Regeneration/ Brain Waves Therapy Music. Does it work? Who knows and how wold you know if you never gave it a try? Such Is. Life as an experiment, nothing is left to chances and yet everything is the taking of chances and who is there to say yes or no at the wee hours in the morning? An idiot will remain and idiot if he never realize that he is one, until he is awakened to this realization he will live life  simply fulfilling an obligation of being born into this world like any other God forsaken entity bound for the market place or the slaughter house. 

Yes silence is beauty in essence for a wayward mind, however it is the habit of my mind that the silence often needs to be filled by random thoughts and thus the background music. This sound I am listening to is repetitious but soothing and it does fills my consciousness with a sense of  embodied silence; my gratitude to those who took the trouble to share such gifts on You Tube. As i browsed my Face Book prior to making this posting I came across a quote by an icon in Malaysia, Dr. Zeti Akhtar Aziz, the former Bank Negara of Malaysia Governor. A quote worth keeping for posterity,
":" My own experience has been to observe highly successful individuals from different parts of the world, and in different fields, looking at their traits and strengths. Different traits have been important in different individuals. Among the important traits are having the vision and staying true to the cause. They are also the ones that strive with great passion to excel in what they do. They also have the capacity to be tested to the limit and not be discouraged by setbacks. Having values and high energy levels has also been important. These traits can often be observed in sport persons, musicians and artists. This drive with passion to achieve applies in our fields, too, whether in public policy or in the corporate world."
Zeti Akhtar Aziz.


This quote is to me one of those voices that reflects the power of collective consciousness being expressed through an individual whose lifelong accomplishment is exemplary. Having been the Governor of a country's banking system, she is a role model worthy to be emulated by the younger generation in their search for a meaning to their individual lives as it is to mine. Fame and fortune aside, she has set a record that is not an easy feat to follow without passion and dedication towards self  discovery.

Monday, September 02, 2019

The Secret to Life.?

 Listening to the Gregorian chant on You Tube at four in the morning after doing some meditation and  stretching with my bamboo staff a little later. It has become a habit for the past year or so that this has been happening without fail as my wake up call is a very persistent cat that claws at the side of my bed to wake me up as exactly 3am to be fed. Now armed with a cup of hot Necafe black, I am making this Blog entry of who knows what as I really have np idea whatsoever anymore to write about and so I am letting it flow along with whatever that comes. The chant has raised my inner energy level with the tightening at my forehead where the third eye is supposed to be located and this happening too has become an accepted habit whenever i start to sit and chant or listen to one,I have myriads of choices to listen to including,the verses from the Holy Quran and other religious scriptures to Native American shamanic chants, Tibetan deep throat chants and most powerful of all the Om chants. How privileged we are in this modern day and age where it is all at the fingertips.

It is said by some that the next level of human consciousness development will be through sound and vibrations and so I feel like i am on track without even making an attempt to be so where my spiritual practice is concern and yes it works for whatever it is worth. There is a sense of peacefulness that comes along as I stroke Furby my daughter's cat that sits on the chair beside mine and with it a sense of Love of unconditional Love for the well being of the universe itself that emanates from the heart encompassing the Whole within and without. Nothing out of the ordinary, this feelings. but they are there nonetheless and this feelings are getting more apparent I notice over time replacing negative vibes and thoughts that used to inhabit my mind in the past, not too long ago.

Other than listening to chants and scriptural recitations I find that listening to the more contemporary of sound recordings that is suggested would help to activate or raise the resonant or vibrations in the brain to trigger one form of healing or another to be very helpful too. These i have to take it on faith and as experiments hoping that the videos done are done with thorough research and does what they are suppose to do. I believe in what is said about the next level of brain development as well as mental and spiritual well being and energizing is through sound and vibrations and am willing to experiment further into the use of these videos especially as my background sound as I write or paint on top of listening to good music such as Hans Zimmer or Kitaro or Ravi Shankar.  The repetitious Gregorian Chant is still running through my head and I am also having  good chat with an old friend from Green Bay,  Wisconsin by the name of Jerry Sule who is in his fifties now and a grand father. I traveled with Jerry from Green bay all the way to Southern New Mexico State in the 70s; he was about 17 years of age. 

There is no secret to life other than the ones you created. 

"You had an influence in my upbringing." - Jerry Sule











 










 










Saturday, August 31, 2019

Merdeka!- Malaysian National Day message.

When the first Malaysian Prime Minister, the late Tunku Abdul Rahman Putra Al Haj was raising his fist and exclaiming, "Merdeka!" I was six years of age waving a small flag among my fellow primary school mates of Malays, Chinese and Indians at Padang Kota Lama or the Esplanade. I had no idea what was happening then but was thrilled none the less that i did not have to be in classes for the day and the following day was also a holiday. We watched the military parades and were thrilled by the flyover by the Royal Australian Airforce planes. Although vague in my memory it i was still a day I remember because my uncle was in the parade as a member of the Civil Defence Force (CD). As the Tunku was hailing a new era in our history, I was enjoying being among my friends fellow Penangites (Anak Pulau Pinang), having a good time.

Today the Independence Day has taken a different kind of meaning for most of us Malaysians, we are no more as united as we used to be, no more patriotic and no more genuine in our declaration of a nationhood. Today each and every one of us are troubled by how the country has come to divide itself and how it has become a victim to scandalous corruption and racial discord. Today the flag is the only thing that symbolizes the true meaning of our nationhood and even the flag has become a victim to controversy of late. Face it, we are not what we used to be as a nation and we are a nation living is denial of an impending upheaval , as in the words of our present Prime Minister, not too long ago, we are a nation sitting on a time  bomb and the sooner we wake up to realize this the better for us or for the future of our children and theirs. We have to stop kidding ourselves and stop being made tools for those who are exploiting every possibility into making a fast buck out of the the lack of interest and even ignorance we have been showing with our "tidak apalah" or "never mind la" spirit. 

If there is any meaning to our Independence it has to be our freedom from the noose that has been run through our noses to be dragged by the power that be in any direction they deem fit to suit their interests. It is the freedom from the very men and women we elected into office to run this country whose salaries we pay and whose promises we have bought hook, line and sinker. It is the freedom from our own self serving ignorance that we have to be independent from, we have become a nation that is being played about by those who does it simply because they can; we live in fear of the retribution for they hold the laws at their convenience. As a nation we the people have to become aware of the truth even if it hurts us to accept it, for only the truth can set us free. 

Merdeka! My fellow Malaysians! Wake Up! Stay Awake! Don't let them fool You!









   

Friday, August 30, 2019

TThis I ask my God.

Are we all trapped in the matrix of our own making? Is our lives predestined as to the outcome at the end of our days here on this plane. Are we merely puppets dangling at the end of strings that is held and manipulated by unseen hands? There are those who believe we are. That we exist just for the sake of fulfilling our obligations of being here like it is our privilege to be so and thus having to pay our dues in one form or another. Then along came the like of Gautama, the historical Buddha who questioned this state of our affairs and refuses to play the same game as the rest of humanity and opted to step out of the circle or box as the case may be and sought out the truth to the matter. Challenging the Gods and the Deities, breaking the yoke of a life of comfort and ease, the Buddha stepped into the unknown in search of the answers to his questions about who he was and what was life all about. Why the suffering, the inequity, the injustices that has plagued mankind and how to put an end to it. The Buddha was an iconoclast who broke out of the matrix, the circle of life, death and rebirth, better known as the vicious circle that we are all trapped into from the day we were born to the day we die.

Is humanity living in a collective denial? Are we as a specie living in abject blindness, being led by guide dogs everywhere we go and everything we do? Are we being shaped and formed by some unseen hands, being exploited for a unholy purpose, like cattle and sheep being led towards the slaughterhouse? What we are doing to ourselves, to the environment and to the planet  itself points towards our self destructive nature rather than our inherent wisdom as homo sapiens, Man, created in the image of God. Are we, created in the image of God? We sure do not act like it, we have become much worse than the beasts of the wild, we kill our own for -pleasure, for money for power and we destroy our habitat that we share with the rest of sentient beings with impunity like we are the sole owner of this planet. We justify every action we take in the name of development and prosperity and are proud of our so called civilization. What is wrong with this picture? Who is writing the script, who is pulling the strings?

How can we collectively step out of this trap that we have allowed ourselves into; do we even care? Or should we with great hope and faith hand it to God to resolve it like those who the time of the Buddha who ruled man through their divine matrix. The Gods or God that had created inequity and suffering of man as a pawn in the game we call life. Personally I ask these questions for myself of the God that I have my faith in, whether I will be answered to or not in this life is irrelevant, however I would like to let it be known that I will not be marched blindly to my grave accepting all the crap that i have witnessed and experienced in my lifetime. I may not become a Buddha in this lifetime, however i will walk my path as a Bodhisattva and serve those who are in need and help to heal those who are too blind to see from stepping into the same shit hole life after life. As to my Lord all I can say is, "No Sir, everything is not okay from where I stand. You Sir, will have to rewrite the script." 



 



 







 


 

Wednesday, August 28, 2019

Wake Up!m Stay Awake! - reminder.

My mind is saturated with endless thoughts , inundated by ceaseless imaginations and fed never ending by myriads of distractions from within and without and I sometimes feels like drowning into insanity. It is my fault none the less for being ignorant and lacking in the will to eradicate and eliminate my habitual tendencines, fro not being able to uproot my ancient twisted karma from the fields of my consciousness. As I get older it seems it gets worse instead of better despite the fact that i do my meditations and more so and often with deeper intensity. There is however noticeable changes as I find it easier to slip into silence more easily when I sit. My mind drops all its rattlings much more readily and I find myself in a state of peaceful contemplation and often in silent prayers especially in asking for forgiveness and protection from my Lord. Forgiveness for my weaknesses and transgressions committed in the past present and future and protection from my own selfish desires that I am not able to remove even at this later stage in my life.

 When in doubt or overcome by excessive mental cluttering I would almost automatically find myself uttering, Astaghfirullah al Azim or Ar GafuruRohim, begging for the mercy of  the All Merciful and Oftorgivng. And when I do this i find my mind immediately settling down in to silence and a more clear state of consciousness pervades in me. The Prophet of Allah is said to have said that uttering this yearning for forgiveness from the Lord of Mercy is the most potent of all recitatitons for a sinner;  of which I am one. My mind would forever be on hand to confirm my errors and transgressions in the past  , present and perhaps into the future, it is like I am trapped into this state of  self created bondage. It is no doubt that I am trapped into this state by my own ignorance in not being able to free myself from the delusion that my mind has set up for me. I have become a victim of my own stupidity in not being able to see the mind for what it is; a parasite that feeds on my guilt and habitual tendencies. 

My self identity, like being attached to who I have assumed my self to be has become an almost fixed state that I have accept to be the true me and thus I ramble on and on like an idiot lost in my own self created maze. Get off the roller coaster you fool, stop entertaining this madness that has got you trapped like hamster in a cage running in circles. You are not who you think you are and that you have established some two thousand five hundred years ago when you were enlightened! Wake up you fool! Stay awake! Don't let the monkey mind fool you! Is this not what you have learned at the Zen monastery where you have sat on your butt facing the Dharma wall for two years! What a  bloody waste of time for here you are still masturbating yourself to fall asleep! Wake Up! before the wake up call is laid on your miserable back like it has often happened in the past. You get lazy and complacent after making a small achievement, slip sliding back into the old, fuck if I care, attitude like you own this Dharma realm. Fuck what others think, if they read or not what you are rambling about, this is your verbal diarrhea, your regurgitation, nothing to do with anyone else. The sooner you make this distinction the better off you are, there is no one out there giving you moral support or making sure you are on the right path, no one but hungry ghosts waiting to devour you as soon as you slip! So Wake Up! Stay Awake! You are on your own in this Dharma ending age.













 















Saturday, August 24, 2019

Save the Amazon - Mother of all the Rain Forest.

After having watched the whole series of, " The Green Frontier" I found out on fb that the Amazon Jungle, Mother of all rain forest in the world is burning out of control. No matter who is to blame for it there no justification whatsoever that would make it right for again humanity has fucked up big time against Mother Nature. Oh sure we don't feel it so much all the way here in Malaysia, but give it time and we definitely will.  The cut and burn of the tropical rain forest is not an unfamiliar phenomena for us as we get it here too courtesy of our neighbor Indonesia that every now an then send haze all the way from Sumatra and Kalimantan areas to the Mainland Malaysia and so much so that we are used to it now. The Amazon burning is a whole event in itself as it will effect more than just the loss of vegetation, flora and fauna, it is the loss of  our human moral obligation towards our capacity as stewards of this our planet. In Islam it is said man has been appointed as the vicegerent or wardens of this Earth, Caliphs or caretakers and what do we do, we simply fucked up big time. What is even more shameful is we keep looking for someone to blame instead of find ways and means to put out the fire. 

In this day and age we can send armies in the thousands if not hundreds of thousands into another country to wipe out lives and flatten cities. We are equipped with the state of the art weapons for destruction, and mobilize at the drop of a coin and we brag about it to instill fear in our enemies. The enemy that humanity faces today is much more destructive than a nuclear bomb as it is spreading at a rate that would make Hiroshima and Nagasaki as child's play in comparison. Humanity is facing a force of destruction that will tip the balance of nature so bad that WW1 and WW2  would seem like a picnic in the park simply because its long term effect will be like a terminal cancer for the whole planet as there will be no rebuilding or reconstruction in the aftermath. Mother Nature will prevail yes, but not in our lifetime or our children's for the recovery to happen. 

The loss of biodiversity alone will be if not already is, a tragedy that will live with us in infamy, and we aught to be ashamed for allowing this to occur in our lifetime. The pollution that will fill up the rivers and every body of water around the Amazon area will become so toxic that for life to return back to normal will take time and effort if ever. Then there is the life of the indigenous, the forest people and their spiritually attached to nature way of life what is to become of them? This is no doubt the environmental disaster of the century for the planet and the repercussion will be dire all around the world and not just the countries in and around the Amazonia. Let us see what those in power who claim to be the Super Powers  can do to stop this catastrophe from becoming a terminal human tragedy of this century. It is sad, very very sad, hopelessly sad.