Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Are You A Child, An Adult, or a Mentally Retarded Adult by Choice (MRAC)?

If you ask anyone if they are proud of themselves, the almost defensive answer will be: “of course. I am proud of who I am”. But who are you?  How would you define yourself? Even if you have not consciously defined yourself, the fact is you have been defining yourself by the life you live.  I will bet my last dollar that many of us have been defining ourselves completely contrary to what we think we are most parts of our lives.

When you were in kindergarten, you just behaved as you would behave. You can get along with some friends and with some others you cannot get along. Most probably, you never even knew why you could not get along other than being just uncomfortable. Sometimes, it is probably because you figured the other boy or girl is just not sharing her toys or things with you. Or maybe, being a child, you have not yet developed social and discerning skills. It is acceptable and sometimes it can be cute to hear a child say: “ I am going to complain to my papa about you”. Or, “I don’t know, let me ask my mama about it”.

When a child or even teenager says something like; “ I have get my parent’s permission first before I can do it”, we consider them well brought up and disciplined. What if an adult says something like that all the time?

For instance, in deciding what clothes to wear or what speech to make, the adult tells you: “I have to ask the permission of Mr X”. And Mr X is a stranger to him! Or say, you ask him, “What do you think of freedom of thought?”. And he replies, “Can you give me two days to get Mr X’s views of that please? I do not want to get it wrong”.

What am I talking about? I am talking about adults who live a child’s life. An adult who lives like a child is not cute but mentally retarded. I am sure this is an acceptable proposition? Let me illustrate:

Somewhere in the growth path of your life, someone comes along and tells you that since you are a Muslim, you cannot do this and that. Or cannot say this or that or wear this and that. In fact this person even tries to control what you think and feel. Now, this person who is telling you how to live your life is not even your father or mother. He is not even your remote neighbour. He is some paid civil servant whom you are meeting for the first time. He does not only tell you, he has been given the legal power to punish you if you do not abide by his dictations. He can have you caned like a child for disobeying him.

Remember, while with your own parents, you may disagree with their view of things since you feel that you have now become an adult, it is not necessarily the case with the paid civil servants. Your parents may finally accept that you have grown up, capable of making responsible decisions and after all you are now supporting them. It is not so with the paid civil servants. Their word, their world view and their interpretation of life is law. You have no choice but to abide by their views unless you want to commit a crime.

Yes, a crime for not agreeing to someone’s world view of how you should live your life. It does not matter that your world view does not cause any physical or moral harm to someone. It also does not matter that you have a higher level of intelligence and better discerning powers than the paid civil servants. The point is: they have been given authority to treat you like a child and somewhere along the line, you had, either ignorantly or recklessly, given them that authority.

And just like everything else in life, a nightmare or fantasy actually acted out in daily life ultimately becomes a norm. You even tend to forget that you are being treated like a child. You become what you are and you accept that as a fact of life. Once you do this, unconsciously you have limited your thinking capacity to that of a child. However, since bodily you are not a child, your behaviour is actually idiotic or at best childish.

Your mind tells itself not to develop and you find normal adult things complex. Just like a child you get used to being dependent on the very thing that limits and controls your life – the paid civil servants.

Try to multiply this childlike people into a group or a community and see what you get.

You would probably get a community of people who have child-like fears that adults should not have. They would forever need to be protected by someone else to whom they consider superior or capable of protecting them. They would want someone else to get them the toys that they want without having to work for it like adults.

They will ask for permission before they want to speak on something in case they are rebuked. Maybe too like a child, they do have the capacity to distinguish between foolishness and maturity. Unlike a child who is growing, they, the child-like adult have surrendered their thinking responsibility to the paid civil servants – and are happy with it!

I have often said that everyone grows old and few grow up. However, when the growth ability of human beings are systematically retarded by the system, we have imbecilic adults and a culture of mediocrity. Such a community actually legalizes institutions that treats them like a child (or imbeciles, since they are now adults) without realizing that they are lowering their dignity and surrendering their lives to paid civil servants.

What seems to escape everyone’s attention is that the paid civil servants are also a product of the very system that created the mediocrity culture. Hence you have mediocre people in authority creating an even more mediocre environment for the rest. You, the adult become subjected to this because of the label that you are legally given.

In other words, you have allowed the law to turn you into a child-like state where people in authority can dictate to you how you live. Adults are supposed to have the ability to think for themselves and decide on personal matters without external interference. However, once the law says that something is no longer personal but it concerns the interest of the State, then your personal liberty is now taken away. Like a child, you become a custodian of the disciplinarian, the State officials. They now have power over your lives. You are trained to stop thinking for yourselves.

In a mediocre, child-like environment, the adult who chooses to behave like an adult is frowned upon by the MRACs. When you go to a kindergarten, you will find the children playing with the children, away from the adults.

Do you understand what I am saying and if you do, does this in anyway affect your dignity as an adult?

Are you comfortable being an MRAC?

Or maybe like a child, you lack the ability to think and lack maturity?



Anonymous said...

is time to take the challenge and change the mind set of these paid civil servant. Political will is not good enough. We must be encouraged to take the challenge.

Great article, Bro

Rashid Embong said...



Candidly expressed! Excellent!

Rashid Embong

Mac said...

Thats the problem, many consciously choose to be MRAC. Because of their refusal to reason and logic with a "non-expert" it will forever be an attitude that is hard to change. But of course, if the paid civil servants suddenly preach about and permit all to think for themselves, then change will come naturally. But we all know thats just wishful thinking.

Jahamy said...


That"s why it is important for us to change first..and hopefully a few around us.

This is also why I suppose that God keeps sending messengers and reformers all through human life.


jch said...

Reminds me of Hishamuddin Rais's idea of 'proses membonsai'* of the minds of many Malaysians.

Something to be concerned about.


SMDet said...

It is scary that what you write is true for most people. I think it a position of where people do not realise what's going round them until too late and regret.

Also, our education system dont allow the type of thinking that automatically creates self reliance.