Friday, December 30, 2011

This morning the mailman brought me a package which contained a book entitled "The Monster that Ate Ubud"  as promised by my friend David Trevelyan one of the authors of the book. I was a pleasant surprise and indeed it came at the right moment as i was struggling not to slip myself into a manic depression after meditating and contemplating my immediate future which to say the least is bleak when it comes to money. MONEY! MONEY! MONEY! I have three car payments to catch up to  now and the rent and the daily needs. Its not bad I keep telling myself, Insha'Allah I keep reminding myself, patience I whisper to myself. Thank God my daughter got her financial loan so I have one worry less but her loan money just about covers all that she needs to get by which means it would not be long before she will need my help again, WOW!! Anyone want to buy a 100 feet long painting? it my masterpiece and have been working on it for over three years now! Will negotiate the price for sure and hey, it will be worth a fortune when I am dead and gone!
Or maybe you are interested in my A 3 size sketches mostly nude sketches and you can see the samples on some of my previous blogs, charcoal pencils and pen and ink, I have quite a collection of them and will be willing to let them go for a reasonable offer. Wanna Help out a starving artist? Oh well what can i say, I should have, could have would have done this or done that in my past, but here I am in my present and I am not good at making money as my friend just told me, "Sam, you are like man carrying a treasure chest in your arms but does not know how to use it."
And check this out, I got Google Adsense to advertise in my blogging pages with the hope that it will generate some form of income from it( Listening to advise from my friends), last i checked the message left was Google has disabled the Adsense Account benefit to my blog due to some??? So even here I am out of luck and Google is still advertising on my blog!! So much for trying. Get a JOb!! Yeah at 62 not a bad idea I can still be a security guard somewhere why not? So will start out looking for a job and screw these time wasting, heart aching worthless acts of so called creative expressions. God if I can claim mileage and time for the amount of effort i have put into this blogging and painting and sketching and keeping my anger and frustration in check, I would be a millionaire! But no! I wanna be the good guy, the guy who turned over a new leaf, the guy who is searching for the Divine, the guy who is looking for the recognition from his family and friends! Look where I am at! Pandering my self esteem to no one and everyone, pussyfooting around like a sick rat afraid to take the demons by the balls like i used to and what is worse blaming it all on ageing. HUMBUG!!
Who am I trying to justify my case to I dont know, but this much I know, letting it off like I just did felt good and for that alone the blogging has its merits. It beats the hell out of blaming others or crawling into a hole with a needle in my arm or a bullet in my head, (if i can find a gun).I wish I should, I would and i could but damn if I know what is really bugging me!
I hope the future holds better cards in hand for me but it looks like I am off to a very slow start with my fiscal status at a minus three car payments and rent coming up. Ha! Bahari! What have you done to deserve such poor merits! Well no sense in regrets and I am not dead at least not yet. Body still all there a little slower now but it is still kicking so what is there to be despair about other than just a temporary shortage of funds and whats new to that? My son treated me to Sherlock Holmes last night and my daughter is getting by ok having visited her cousin and spent time with my eldest brother, that's good.So what is really bugging me? This constant nagging feeling that something is amiss and I can't put my finger on it.Maybe don't really need to, may be just have to let it play itself out and reveal itself. I am hitting rock bottom no doubt and if there is any cause for worry it would be the fact that they can repossess my car which has only about a thousand RM left to be paid up for. So right now that's is about it.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

A Malaysian's Reflection on the Nation'sFuture 2.

"KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 13 — Datuk Zaid Ibrahim, who left PKR last month, is now a member of the Malaysian People’s Justice Front or Akim, said its president Zakaria Salleh today."
Thus for whatever reason Zaid may have left PKR is of no concern of mine nor of anyone for that matter as in politics it is those things that we know not of that is more important to any known issues as the truth is often veiled from our perception for political expediency.But suffice to say that Zaid Ibrahim needed to remove himself from a party he had left the ruling party for and held in great esteem for a short duration of time until...??
Whatever it may be that caused Zaid to hop from one party to another is relevant only to the fact that he still is one solitary voice that champions the people's concern and the need for change in the policies if not the government itself. Unlike the 'maverick' deranged prince cum political thorn in the government flesh, Raja Petra Kamaludin (RPK), Zaid is here face to face with his detractors, his life on the line. What Zaid exposes through his knowledge and experiences having been  on both sides of the divide and seen with his intelligent and unbiased mind is food for our thoughts.
"To bring about a truly united ‘1Malaysia,’ our Prime Minister must not
always refer to the deprivation of the Malays suffered under the
British.. No amount of wallowing of the past can change history nor
can we just tell the Chinese and the Indians how grateful they should
be for events taking place 100 years ago. Equally he cannot just be
happy that he has the MCA and the MIC taking care of the non-Malays.
He has to do more to make sure that the non-Malays are equally
responsible and generous with the Malays. Will they open their
businesses to the Malays? Will they give credit on the same terms they
do to their own clans?"
As much as I agree with this thought I wish to add that it is not only the PM's responsibility that this has to be carried out but it is the nation's, each and everyone of us regardless who we are so long as we declare ourselves true Malaysians.China, India or Peri Bumi Nusantara or whatever that we have been told to be who we are or where we originate from has to be erased from our minds when we enter this new pact of a 1-Malaysia. This is the covenant that we all have to share to survive as a nation and any political will that does not propagate this mindset does not deserve to rule this nation.We Malaysians need a mental 'clean slate' yesterday.
  "But at the same time, the people, including the Malays, must be
convinced that democracy and a functioning bureaucracy are good for
them. That they have a better chance of realising their potentials and
benefiting from their rights and privileges under a government that
respects just laws. They must resist corruption by all means at their
disposal. The notion of Bangsa Malaysia will not detract or take away
anything from them but instead they become a part of a larger and more
diverse community where they too can experience the generosity,
beauty, strength and richness of Malaysian cultures. They will benefit
from the solidarity of people from all walks of life and their
worldview will change to make them stronger and more confident of
Today, as never before, the Malay are more Malays, the Chinese are more Chinese and the Indians more Indian and so on..and God or the Gods are always on our side. Corruption has become a way of life and abuse of power comes quite naturally to most who have the means.We have become a proud nation despite babies being found in dumpsters and drug addiction is as rampant as unemployment.We are proud of our heritage more so than admitting that our past was one of a colonial bondage which has set us one against another throughout our history so much so that we do not even have a clear agreement on what our history was all about.and we prosecute anyone who dares to question.
"A Prime Minister of this country must not succumb to the idea that
force and repression will prevail over the people’s will. The Prime
Minister of this country must not suffer from the delusion that the
Police, the Army, the Courts, the Election Commission and the
Attorney-General could strike fear in the hearts of the people to the
extent that they will and must retreat. No leader in ancient and
modern times has survived the outrage of the masses. Today we have
witnessed a new sense of outrage; outrage against the abuse of power,
against inequality, outrage against the continued persecution of Anwar
Ibrahim, and outrage against the policies of divide and rule."
In other words it is up to us the people to want to change and remain in power as the source to reckon with for any single party that decides to rule us. It is the power of the people that has to be awakened and kept awake if our country is to survive and excel as a nation. We have all the resource both material as well as human to take on the challenge into the future despite the global economic uncertainty.We cannot and will not allow for our resources to be wasted by the few self serving in power.As individuals we have to look deeply within and realize our own motives and intentions such that they serve the nation as a whole.
 " Today the rakyat has spoken and they want their voices heard. They
want a new beginning, so that this country, which we all call home,
will be transformed into a dynamic, open and vibrant democratic
sanctuary. A sanctuary where we live without fear of police
harassment, without fear of wearing black or yellow, without fear of
detention without trial, without the nausea of reading newspapers
whose editors have to toe the line to keep the papers alive. We will
make this country such that we have room and space for all of us to
have our dreams and hopes come true."
If and when we arrive at the target of a "Vision-2020" as set by our former PM it will not be merely as a developed nation but also a well rounded nation with respect for race and religions and the love for the environment. It is not my intention to write for or against any party in the upcoming election nor criticize any one individual or individuals. I chose Zaid Ibrahim's article because it says pretty much what i would have said or want to believe in. I write for those who take their time to read and with the hope that they can come to their own conclusion as who or what they would want to govern this nation when the time to vote comes along.
 "Ladies and gentlemen, we do not live in a world of black and white. We
live in a world full of different colours, shades and textures. No
truer is this than in Malaysia. I can stand here and tell you of my
immense sense of pride and affection in being a Malaysian, just as I
can do the same about being Malay. And I believe that we all are just
as capable of feeling that way about being Malaysian and yet similarly
proud of being Malay, Chinese, Indian, Kadazan or Iban, no matter who
we are.
And it is this mix of seemingly conflicting values, which when blended
and tempered with courage, tolerance, good faith and framed by
universally held moral and civic values, that makes the canvas of
Malaysia so rich, so powerful and so full of potential. Let us
preserve this living piece of art and ensure that it continues to
beautify and enrich our personal lives, as private citizens.
For if we fail, then the providence with which we are blessed today to
make a breakthrough change, will disappear as quickly as it came; and
we will be back to square one.. Our future and that of our children
and their children, depends on our success. Failure is not an option.
God favours the brave.
Thank you."

Saturday, December 24, 2011

A Malaysian's Reflection on the Nation's Future-1

A friend passed away three days ago, however two days earlier we had a long discussion over a couple of teh-tarik about the political issues in Malaysia as he was in the know on these matters as far as I was concerned. I voiced out my concern about who or what to vote for in the upcoming election which will most probably take place early next year. The two main choices he said being the ruling Barisan Nasional party under the PM and the Opposition party, The party Keadilan Raayat under Anwar Ibrahim, it is a choice between the "Iblis and the Shaitan" according to him.But one has to choose as they are the ones in the helm at present and abysmal as it may seem Malaysians are stuck with these two opposing parties as there is no others to stand up against them.It is our civic duty to vote and vote we must to make a difference for the future of this country and for the benefit of our children and theirs.
As much as I abhor politics and politicians I am duty bound to at least think and let my thoughts be heard on the matter and in the process share what the majority of my friends and those i had talked to on the matter had to say only as in conversations as they are not writers.Hence i am writing this piece simply because i feel the need to serve my country in my own small way by expressing my own personal views based upon those of others'. This is in no way meant to criticize or condemn any one party or person, it is a neutral reflection of one Malaysian.
A few years ago i came upon an article in the Internet entitled;  "Zaid Ibrahim's Keynote Address at The Oxbridge Malaysia Dinner." dated 29th. Jul. 09. I was so impressed with the message that I had made a copy of it and still have it on file from which I am going to use as my reference for what I have to say to my fellow Malaysians as it says in a better way than i can ever express my own thoughts.
 "Today I am persuaded by the argument that for Malaysia to have
democracy and the Rule of Law, we must have a new government; a viable
inclusive government of the people; a government for all Malaysians."
This is what all of us Malaysians want or at least desire for if our future is to be secured in a more concrete and stabilized manner, we have to make a commitment towards making a change that is most compelling and self sacrificing within our own individual minds to create an impact that would echo itself into the future.
"Ladies and gentlemen, this country was established as a secular
multicultural and multi-religious democracy a’la the Westminster
model. The Constitution however provides for a special position for
the Malays and natives of Sabah and Sarawak. They unfortunately
omitted to include the Orang Asli in this special category, although
they were naturally the first original inhabitants of this country.
All they got was a Jabatan Orang Asli. The special provisions for
Bumiputras under Article 153 do not make them more special than other
citizens, for the fighters of independence did not envisage an
Orwellian society where some are more equal than others. The
acceptance of equality of rights as citizens is central to the success
of our Malaysian journey."
As a lawyer who at one time created the largest law firm in the country, none can lay claim to better champion the cause and the constitution of this country, Zaid in his unbiased mind saw the truth that would set this country free from the bondage of dependency in whatever form it may take and in this case he advocated the need for the Malays to liberate themselves from depending on the government to subsidize their future.If and when every Malay can say to himself i do not need the government to help me to live my life there is freedom from bondage, from being exploited and manipulated by the powers that be.Any party that claims to champion for any one single race in this country should be viewed with caution and that goes to the Indians and the Chinese as well as the rest of the minority groups in this country; there should never be a minority group in Malaysia.
"When the Prime Minister announced his ‘1Malaysia’ slogan, I asked if
that meant he would make a declaration that all Malaysians are equal.
The answer was not forthcoming till today. All he said was rights must
be understood in the context of responsibilities. Another fuzzy reply.
When critics asked if ‘1Malaysia’ is an affirmation of the rights of
ALL the citizens under the Constitution, an affirmation of the
multicultural and multi-religious nature of our country; and that the
principles of Rukun Negara will continue to be the mainstay of our
society. My detractors say that my views are fodder for the egos and
insecurities of those who detest the constitutional position of the
Malays. They say I work too hard at being a Malaysian and by doing so,
have forgotten my roots and responsibilities to the Malays. And that
no right thinking Malay, who truly understands what is at stake, would
ever support me. I know my heritage. I know my humble beginnings. "
As Malaysians we do, we all know and are proud of our own heritage we don't ask who we are we know who we are. Whatever our past maybe, wherever our forefathers may have hailed from we cannot escape our past, however it is our future that is in jeopardy, that is hanging in a balance and our past is keeping us from moving forward, we need to let go. We need to liberate our minds from this fear of the future and what it holds for us regardless of our past history. It is who we are today that will decide who we will be tomorrow not who we were before.As I mentioned before in this effort a whole lot of self sacrifice has to be made from each and everyone of us and this includes educating those who are ignorant in this matter for they are the ones who will fall victims to those who manipulate our situation for their self serving agendas. We have to act as One, not a Malay Malaysian or a Chinese or Indian Malaysian and so on but as true Malaysians and this has to happen yesterday.Only then can we develop the idea of a shared and common nationhood.
"A new united Malaysia can only come true when UMNO changes and
abandons racial politics and the politics of racial hegemony. Or when
the Malays can be made to understand that patronage, authoritarianism
and nationalist extremism, which underpins UMNO’s style of leadership,
does more harm to the community and the country than good. That Malays
themselves must break from the shackles of narrow nationalism so that
they may realise self-actualisation and emancipation. The first is
difficult to achieve but I take it as my responsibility to try and
achieve the second."
The question is why are Malays not confident in breaking the shackles that is beholding them to the government? Most of my Malay friends and relatives expresses fears of economic loses to the Chinese or not being able to compete with them and so on. How much of theses is true or what is the reality of it? Are the Malaysian Chinese out to sideline the Malays through economic squeeze? Only they can answer this and if it is a positive reply then they too will have to think and start looking into deeply why this country will never rise above what it is today.It is said that we cannot change the world but we can change our selves, our way of looking at the world to help make the change.
"UMNO –  have almost abandoned the idea of a shared and common
nationhood. They believe that for so long as the MCA and the MIC
remain with them as partners of convenience; that is sufficient to
build a nation. They think it’s sufficient to forge a new nation by
electoral arrangements. The MCA and the MIC also think it’s sufficient
for nationhood if they remain business partners of UMNO."
Tod divide and rule is the most common tool of politics and politicians all over and this division can even exist among alliances so long as each benefits from the share of power. This would be fine if those holding the reins of power are beyond corruption and the abuse of power itself. No man and no nation for that matter is free from the influences of Greed, Hate and Ignorance, the three illnesses that man suffers from from the beginning of time. It is the small people, the lay man, the farmers and fishermen, the mechanic and bus drivers that are the victims as their trust, their faith and their hopes are being taken advantage of by those who are unscrupulous and without conscience declaring themselves leaders. It is these so called leaders that we have to weed off from ever sitting in the seats of power to govern this nation and this can only be done through our awakening to the real issues that we as Malaysians need to address and that is Ourselves!
Who are we? What is a true Malaysian? What would it take to become one? For how long can we live in denial or our real identity while we allow others to take advantage of our segregation, our clinging on to our past and the heritage of our forefathers? Am I Malay first Malaysian second? Chinese first Malaysian second? Or Indian first....till when? For so long as we are divided along these racial ethnic lines that is how long we will be dependent on those who live off human illnesses and weaknesses. It is only through our unified selfless sacrifice can we win for this nation her glory and in the process eliminate the need to choose between the Devil and the Deep.
"The ultimate price that the country suffers from the present political
culture is that the Malays and non-Malays will continue to be denied a
sense of ownership of Malaysia’s nation-building journey. And instead
of becoming partners in this voyage to mature nationhood, they
continue to bicker and remain suspicious and distrustful of one
another. Because of this segregation, the government is unable to set
a new direction for the country.. Because of racial polarisation, the
people are not ready to accept a multi-racial dimension for this
country. As a result, we are not able to enact or even discuss
comprehensive national policies whether it is regarding the police,
education or judicial and civil service reforms. The distrust of the
communities will prevent objective appraisals and solutions to the
problems. Ethnic interests take precedence over national interests.
National interests become a strange and fearful concept. And there
will continue to be a brain drain of Malaysian talents who would have
decided that they would rather make their homes elsewhere. This is a
high price that the country can ill-afford to pay given the
increasingly challenging global outlook."

                                                          Quotes from  Keynote Address at Oxbridge Dinner Dialogue
                                                           by Zaid Ibrahim

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Catching the Sun-setting - Balik Pulau

Meditation is one of the most extraordinary things, and if you do not know what it is you are like the blind man in a world of bright colour, shadows and moving light. It is not an intellectual affair, but when the heart enters into the mind, the mind has quite a different quality: it is really, then, limitless, not only in its capacity to think, to act efficiently, but also in its sense of living in a vast space where you are part of everything.
Meditation is the movement of love. It isn't the love of the one or of the many. It is like water that anyone can drink out of any jar, whether golden or earthenware: it is inexhaustible.
You must take a plunge into the water, not knowing how to swim. And the beauty of meditation is that you never know where you are, where you are going, what the end is.
The curious part of meditation is that an event is not made into an experience. It is there, like a new star in the heavens, without memory taking it over and holding it, without the habitual process of recognition and response in terms of like and dislike.
Only in the immensity of the present this aloneness comes. And then, in quiet secrecy in which all communication has come to an end, in which there is no observer with his anxieties, with his stupid appetites and problems only then, in that quiet aloneness, meditation becomes something that cannot be put into words.
Perception without the word, which is without thought, is one of the strangest phenomena. Then the perception is much more acute, not only with the brain, but also with all the senses. Such perception is not the fragmentary perception of the intellect nor the affair of the emotions. It can be called a total perception, and it is part of meditation. Perception without the perceiver in meditation is to commune with the height and depth of the immense.
It is only the mind that is wholly alone that is open. You felt all this suddenly, like a great wind that swept over the land and through you. There you were denuded of everything, empty and therefore utterly open. The beauty of it was not in the word or in the feeling, but seemed to be everywhere about you, inside you, over the waters and in the hills. Meditation is this.
You walked against the wind, and suddenly you felt there was nothing between you and the sky, and this openness was heaven. To be so completely open, vulnerable to the hills, to the sea and to man is the very essence of meditation.

To have no resistance, to have no barriers inwardly towards anything, to be really free, completely, from all the minor urges, compulsions and demands, with all their little conflicts and hypocrisies, is to walk in life with open arms.
You should meditate only in solitude, in the quiet of the night or in the still, early morning. When you meditate in solitude, it must be solitude. You must be completely alone, not following a system, a method, repeating words, or pursuing a thought, or shaping a thought according to your desire. This solitude comes when the mind is freed from thought.
So meditate alone. Get lost. And don't try to remember where you have been. If you try to remember it then it will be something that is dead. And if you hold on to the memory of it then you will never be alone again. So meditate in that endless solitude, in the beauty of that love, in that innocency, in the new then there is the bliss that is imperishable.
So meditate in the very secret recesses of your heart and mind, where you have never been before.
The ecstasy of solitude comes when you are not frightened to be alone no longer belonging to the world or attached to anything. Then, like that dawn that came up this morning, it comes silently, and makes a golden path in the very stillness, which was at the beginning, which is now, and which will be always there.
Bliss that strange sense of joy has no motive. You cannot possibly seek it. Once it is there, depending on the quality of your mind, it remains timeless, causeless, and a thing that is not measurable by time. Meditation is not the pursuit of pleasure and the search for happiness. Meditation, on the contrary, is a state of mind in which there is no concept or formula, and therefore total freedom. It is only to such a mind that this bliss comes unsought and uninvited.
Thoughts on Meditation from J. Krishnamurti

A Visit to My Niece and Her family -Balik Pulau

Self-knowledge is not a thing to be bought in books, nor is it the outcome of a
long painful practice and discipline; but it is awareness, from moment to moment,
of every thought and feeling as it arises in relationship. Relationship is not on an
abstract ideological level, but an actuality, the relationship with property, with
people and with ideas.
Relationship is the mirror in which you can see yourself as you are. You cannot see yourself as you are in this mirror, if you approach it with a conclusion and an explanation, or with condemnation, or with justification.
Relationship is our problem, and not the idea about relationship not at any one particular level but at all the levels of our existence. This is the only problem we have. To understand relationship, we must come to it with freedom from all ideology, from all prejudice, not merely from the prejudice of the un-educated but also from the prejudice of knowledge.
Relationship implies existence; and as nothing can live in isolation, to be is to be related. Our conflict is in relationship, at all the levels of our existence; and the understanding of this relationship, completely and extensively, is the only real problem that each one has.
Religion then is not belief, nor dogma, but the understanding of truth that is to be discovered in relationship, from moment to moment. Religion that is belief and dogma is only an escape from the reality of relationship. The man who seeks God, or what you will, through belief which he calls religion, only creates opposition, bringing about separation which is disintegration. Any form of ideology, whether of the right or of the left, of this particular religion or of that, sets man against man - which is what is happening in the world.
Relationship is the challenge of everyday life. If you and I and another do not know how to meet each other, we are creating conditions that breed war. So, the world problem is your problem. You are not different from the world. The world is you. What you are the world is. You can save the world, which is yourself, only in understanding the relationship of your daily life and not through belief, called religion, of the left or of the right, or through any reform however extensive.

What is important is not how to act, what pattern to follow, or which ideology is
the best, but the understanding of your relationship with another. This
understanding is the only revolution, and not the revolution based on idea. Any
revolution based on an ideology maintains man as a means only.

There is only one fundamental revolution. This revolution is not of idea; it is
not based on any pattern of action. This revolution comes into being when the
need for using another ceases. This transformation is not an abstraction, a thing
to be wished for, but an actuality which can be experienced, as we begin to
understand the way of our relationship. This fundamental revolution may be
called love; it is the only creative factor in bringing about transformation in
ourselves and so in society.
J. Krishnamurti - January 22, 1950