Sunday, August 24, 2008

Merdeka Countdown7: Are we merdeka from "nearness"?

Selfish means to care only about your own self, you own needs, your own, your own, your own…..

Your own self only – family problems
Your own family only – social problems
Your own tribe only – race, caste, language
Your own kind only –, wealth, social circle, education
Your own religious group only – religiosity, extremism, exclusion, fanaticism
Your own country only – nationalism, fascism, hegemony
Your own political party only – political parochialism and partisan outlook
Your own species only – environmental problems, extinction of flora and fauna

Leaders, thinkers, social activists, people still bonded to selfishness of all types cannot be truly merdeka. Is our system merdeka from this nearness? Do you see any bold, honest leader who can merdeka our society from this nearness? Have we learned to “see from a distance”?

Our greatest, common value is pragmatism, but we will not admit. Pragmatism is a symptom of selfishness. Admitting will mean we are an outcast in the system. Think about it…I could be very wrong.

God made us in harmony. Harmony means a complementary existence between ALL that which exists. Selfishness is destructive of harmony, no matter by what name it shows up.

Don’t we want to be merdeka from all this selfishness, ‘nearness’ and see things from a distance???

May we learn something from Bette Milder. Please read the lyrics below the video kindly provided by brother Irwan.

From a Distance
From a distance the world looks blue and green,
and the snow-capped mountains white.
From a distance the ocean meets the stream,
and the eagle takes to flight.

From a distance, there is harmony,
and it echoes through the land.
It's the voice of hope, it's the voice of peace,
it's the voice of every man.

From a distance we all have enough,
and no one is in need.
And there are no guns, no bombs, and no disease,
no hungry mouths to feed.

From a distance we are instruments
marching in a common band.
Playing songs of hope, playing songs of peace.
They're the songs of every man.
God is watching us. God is watching us.
God is watching us from a distance.

From a distance you look like my friend,
even though we are at war.
From a distance I just cannot comprehend
what all this fighting is for.

From a distance there is harmony,
and it echoes through the land.
And it's the hope of hopes, it's the love of loves,
it's the heart of every man.

It's the hope of hopes, it's the love of loves.
This is the song of every man.
And God is watching us, God is watching us,
God is watching us from a distance.
Oh, God is watching us, God is watching.
God is watching us from a distance


Anonymous said...

but then...

could the proposition then be, if one wants to be selfless, they have to learn how to be totally selfish before being able to achieve such abundance?

if one cant learn how to love oneself unconditionally, one would not know how to love others..

the need to be selfless will be derive from selfish

Bulan of Puteras

Anonymous said...

Bulan of Puteras,

Precisely as what you have contended but I am personally belief all that apply to those who know or aware how to appreciate things.........


jahaberdeen said...

Bulan of puteras,

Interesting concept there "unconditional love of self". Loving oneself without conditions attached. But what does it mean?

When we say love must be unconditional, we often mean that we love others without attaching any conditions to those whom we love. One example, is that we do not expect to be "repaid" or to be loved back. Second is that we have no ulterior motive like trying to make them beholden to us, etc.

But with one's own is that possible? How does one love oneself without attaching conditions to oneself? Or conversely, how does one love one self by attaching conditions to oneself? Maybe you can explain so that we may learn from you.

I could be wrong, but I think selflessness is the antithesis of selfishness. Being antithesis,can one derive from the other? Example of night and day. They do not derive from one another but are two different states created by forces outside of them.

Likewise I see selfishness and selflessness as two different states independent of one another. If one exists, the other is absent. Like night and day, they cannot co-exist, they can only exist in the absence of the other.

If I am correct, the issue then would be: what causes some to be selfless and some to be selfish? We are of course not to be confused with the basic survival instincts common to all. We mean as selfish when it is in excess of that and to the avoidable detriment of others.

I think what determines it is the way the "heart and the mind" co-relate to each other being a function of how we interpret life in general.

For example, you are very poor and very hungry and have not eaten for days and all you have is only one bun. Someone equally hungry is beside you. These are some of the possible ways you may react

1. You eat the whole bun yourself
2. You eat some and keep the rest for the future in case you do not come across any food in the future
3. You give half to the other equally hungry person.
4. You keep the larger portion and give the smaller portion to the other person.
5. You give the whole bun to the other person - which is higly improbable.

So, why do different people make different choices from the above? It has to do with the way the "heart and the mind" co-relate to each other being a function of how we interpret life in general.
And in our choices reflects our state of selfishness or selflessness.

I could be off the track of course!

Peace e with you.