Jul 20, 2013

The Issue With "Allah"

You know the saying, "When a FOOL is corrected, he gets mad, but when a wise man is corrected he appreciates and learns"? Well, you can apply that directly in the issue faced in Malaysia over the use of the name Allah for the sole purpose of respecting language amongst the Malay speaking Catholics in Malaysia.

It just sickens me to see how Malaysia needs to shut people down when they speak the truth while fools get to go on talking crap and claim its theology and Islamic civilisation. So if the Vatican Rep, Joseph Marino's apology is not enough, for his mere opinion which is based on historic truth to be exact, what do these people want in order to stop feeling threatened? Oh yes, he needs to LEAVE THE COUNTRY right? Only then will these people feel glorious and mighty that they stood up for what they claim. (Although I must say, Marino should have done his homework before coming to Malaysia! Anyone who knows Malaysia, must know what you can and cannot say in this country. Free will, human rights, freedom of speech, etc - Excuse me it's Malaysia so WHAT IS THAT AGAIN?)

This brings back to the time when the late Pope John Paul II visited Singapore in 1986, and many Muslim Malaysians were against his coming to Malaysia, claiming we are an Islamic State and we do not have place for a Papal visit nor condone it. I remember the media highlighting the ruckus that took place at the Johor-Singapore border. I saw the news while I was in Singapore and I was only 9 years old then when I visited the Pope and honestly it is just disgusting! I still remember how I felt about Malaysia back then and honestly, my feelings have not changed after 27 years. The Pope may not have visited Malaysia, but 16 years later, Mahathir visited the Vatican and meets the Pope! Something I remember both my parents saying would happen because of the arrogance our people have in themselves, that God would make it be the other way around and it did. Whether it was God's work or the work of Allah, Mahathir's visit to the Vatican gave assurance to the world that there is still hope of PEACE and RESPECT between the two giant religions of this world.

From day one, I have been saying this and I stand by what I've said, Catholics should just drop the idea of the use of Allah for God. Get those bibles reprinted and change Allah to Tuhan! What is the big deal? We know for a fact this is a lost cause in this country. So be the bigger person. They clearly are worried that the use of this word will CONFUSE their people, so accept and respect that and let this matter rest! The muslims who know the truth about the lineage of the name Allah, fights otherwise, many Muslims feel annoyed that the government paint them as "easily influence" in other words doubting their faith. These Muslims want such claims to end, but instead of being heard, these Muslim friends of ours are being tagged as anti-Islam and claimed to be politically motivated. All this just shows how shallow minded those whose opinions are not the same as ours - the opinions based on evidence, but then again, would we be less of a CATHOLIC if we decide to end this? Would be be less of a CATHOLIC if we don't call God ALLAH? NO! Certainly not! I say choose your battles. Many are UNNECESSARY and are just the work of the devil inciting us to act as if it were the work of the HOLY SPIRIT. This is a linguistic issue and we know why they want it to be theirs.

If you hadn't noticed, our religious leaders don't block us from the influences of the world. They educate us on our options and repercussions and allow us to chose and decide through what we believe, through our faith. A simple example, when the movie Da Vincci Code came to cinemas, while some Catholics wanted it banned, what did our Bishop say? Let them watch and chose what they want to believe. If their faith is STRONG, they will not be dampened by FICTION. The movie played gloriously in the cinemas, and I recall so clearly how many non Catholics clapped and cheered on to parts of that movie, especially when the image of the supposed Apostle John was said to actually be Mary Magdalene and when that figure was connected to Jesus to claim they were an item. It's really funny to see how the crowd laughed and even clapped at that point. I was shocked to witness that sort of a reaction, but back to the point - let your faith lead you! Let not the ways of the world shaken your faith in your Saviour! Happy are those who have not seen yet believe. So we believe right? We believe in what we know, in what has been taught to us through our Catechism.  We don't get shaken by fiction or irrelevant claims. Our Bishop didn't go all 'GANGHO' over it! He left it to us because he believed the sheep will not stray from the Shepherd.

Knowing the truth and standing up for it is something MALAYSIA CAN NEVER DEAL WITH! Not only are we not allowed to fight for what is right, we have to dim our intelligence just because most leaders don't have one! While our government clearly have no sense of JUSTICE and are biased about racial and religious intolerance, where they prosecute those who insult Islam yet let those who insult other religions in the media walk freely, shows what sort of a government we have, and believe me, the world see it as clearly as we do too.

So I say, let it go!
Let us love our neighbours are we love ourselves, respect their concerns and practice what Jesus preached to us 2000 years ago.
I say "Let there be peace on earth and let it begin with US!"

(Joseph Marino who came to Malaysia to see into religious matters, might as well go on a good CUTI-CUTI Malaysia and enjoy the food and the wonders of GOD in this land, because that's the only great thing Malaysia has to offer!)

Jul 16, 2013

The Kid and His Potato Chip Packet - My Story For Today

As I waited in front of Belle's school today, my eyes locked on 2 boys leaning on the wall fence busy yapping with each other while 1 of them had his hand sticking out of the fence holding a potato chip packet. 

Looking at him, I sensed what he was going to do - he was going to drop the trash out on the ground in front of the school and as my thought ended, he did it! He actually checked his parameters and cooly let his fingers go off the packet and walah.. he has thrown his trash. He probably thought that was the end of his story with that miserable packet but guess what? It wasn't!

My hand automatically hit my car horn (as if it had a mind of its own) so hard as the packet left his grip and the school guard walked up behind those boys, overlooking them to see who honked.

The 2 of them were looking around too and I got out of my car, walked up to the fence and asked the kid, as I pointed my finger to the packet, what was his problem in looking for a trash bin to throw his trash? 

I spoke so LOUDLY, I literally made a scene there firing him left, right and centre with all every Malay word that could come out of my mouth! Basically asking him what's the point of going to school and learning how to be a proper person and to stand right in front of his school and do such a horrible act! The two started blaming each other for the act. 

After the shouting, he with his face looking like he got a tight slap, walked out of the school with the guard, who was also grumbling at him, walked along the side of the fence and picked the trash! 

The other parents looked at me.. yes Malaysians, they are always good at standing by and watching but this crowd smiled and grinned at me too, while looking angrily at that boy.

Couldn't I just sit and let it go? Oh no! Not I! I have had just up to my neck with the way adults and kids deal with their trash in Malaysia. I can now only hope that boy remembers my face the next time he tries to fling another trash onto the ground!

Jul 11, 2013

The Holy Month of Ramadan & Belle

Last week CJ came home with a picture he coloured in school which said MONTH OF RAMADAN and it was on our study table along with our books and reading materials till yesterday, being the first day of Ramadan and Belle's official experience of the fasting month in a public school, since previously being in a private school with only a handful of Malays and Muslim, she had no experience of personally seeing someone fast, other than for ourselves during our Holy Month of LENT but even then I have not put my kids on a fasting ritual yet.

Belle came home with a new recess instruction for the non-muslims in school.

Recess was shortened slightly, which meant the non muslims would have to eat faster and get back to class sooner than usual. She was not upset with the arrangement, but what impressed me most was what she did last night. While arranging the books on the study table, she saw CJ's colouring and she looked at it for a while and turned to ask me if she could place it on our fridge.

I said of course you can but I also wanted to know why.

Her respond was, "I need to keep it up on the fridge, to remind me of 2 things Ma.
1) It's fasting month and I need to eat faster and join my classmates to study in class.
2) I must not drink my water in front of them because I don't want my friends to feel thirsty seeing me drink while they can't."

I was really touched by her sense of care for her muslim friends and felt proud to hear her say that.
I did however ask her if No.2 was instructed to her by any of her teachers and she said NO. She thought about it herself, because if she were to be fasting, she'd hope others to give her some respect too.

Well done!!

Then Belle decides to tell Christan - "You can look at it everyday and remember not to eat or drink in class too till Hari Raya comes," but CJ's reply was - There are no Muslims in my kindergarten la Chachi!!! (That's true!)

Hahaha... My kids!

Jul 2, 2013


Efforts of making progress in English in our Malaysian National Schools are being taken very seriously by a good number of Malaysian parents for the future generation. As we know the level of English proficiency amongst majority of Malaysians are poor and efforts to improvise this condition has not seen the light of seriousness despite the increased numbers of UNEMPLOYABLE graduates Malaysia has been producing year after year.

Despite the reality of poor efficiency, there are a great number of children who speak and write well in English, and could excel a lot more if they were given the opportunity to be educated in English and many parents feel the need to see the ambitions and visions of these children be lifted and promoted by having them educated in an English Medium-National Type School here in Malaysia.

While we have the Chinese and Tamil type schools to cater for those who speak Chinese and Tamil as their first language, we feel it is only right to have those who speak English as their first language, be given the opportunity to be educated in English as well, of course with the acknowledgement that Bahasa Malaysia is the National Language and a compulsory pass in SPM to see to its importance.

It is proven that when one learns in the language he uses most fluently, it increased their cognitive ability to absorb and perform well in school. Which is why many passionately feel that English Medium Schools should be opened to give this learning opportunity to children who use English as their first language irrespective of what race they may be.

While parents who want English education for their children, and while some children fail to perform well because of language hindrance, these Malaysian parents are struggling to see their children through by placing them in International and Private Schools. Why shouldn't Malaysians have the right to educate their English speaking children in an all English Medium School and have it under the National Education Policy? We cannot carry on living with the idea that we are only permitted to have vernacular schools that offer national type studies in racial mother-tongue of Tamil and Chinese. Many Malays, Chinese and Indians are English speakers by choice or by mix-marriages with other races and nationality.

If you are a Malaysian Parent, and your child speaks English as his or her first language (language spoken most at home and in their social circle) and if you are in favour of this cause, please cast your votes by clicking on the link below. Your votes could make a huge difference in fighting for this cause. Thank you.


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