Thursday, July 28, 2011

The Polarised World of Politics

Datuk Paduka Marina Mahathir writes on the polarised mentality of politics in The Star:

"Politicians of every stripe have two bad habits. Firstly, they think that those who don’t belong to any political party are incapable of having a single political thought. Secondly, when non-politicians think of a good populist idea, politicians of all stripes rush to hijack it.

George W. Bush, that giant of intellectuals, famously said after the Sept 11, 2001 attacks that “Either you’re with us, or you’re against us.”

Those words unleashed a world polarised by politics with no hope for peace, which necessarily requires a coming to the table of all sides to discuss common issues".

My comments below:

I echo her thoughts and add that such polarisation of politics mentality is a hindarance to true maturing and development of citizen empowerment. What should be the objective of every citizen irregardless of political affiliation, race, religion or social status should be the betterment of the Nation and the general welfare of the people.

Selfish partisan interests should never override National interests.

Partisan membership should not disunite citizens in the common objective of acheiveing National goals that benefit the people.

Citizens who are not a member of any political party should not be considered as disqualified to comment or evaluate on matters of national interest or even political thoughts in this country. They are entitled to do so because they are citizens.

As long as we are not able to rise above party mentality and embrace "national mentality" or better still a complete sense of humanity, we will never really be free to put forward true and useful long term reforms.

Peace !

Saturday, July 16, 2011

PAS, Entertainment Outlets and Ramadan

1. Every sunni Muslim knows that fasting is required during the month of Ramadan - it is one of the five pillars of his faith. He knows how to fast, when to break fast and what to do during the fasting month so that his fast fulfills the requirements of the fast.

2. I know that it has been customary (not sure if it is the law) that restaurants owned by Muslims are usually shut from morning and only start operations sometime in the evening. I really do not know whether it is because of some religious reason or because it is not economical to open for breakfast and lunch. I really can never understand why a person who is fasting cannot open his food business. I have been overseas where the operators observe thier fast while serving food. Their faith is unshaken and so is thier business.

3. If it is true that PAS in Kedah wants to close certain entertainment outlets during Ramadan, I also cannot understand thier rationale. Is it to prevent Malays from patronising these places duirng Ramadan?

4. Does that mean that during other months it is okey for the Malays to patronise these places?

5. If the entertainment is intrinsically bad in some way, why not just ban it forever under the law? If it is not intrinsically bad, then what is this double standard all about? Something that is good or bad according to the month is something that I cannot understand.

6. I know that it is a criminal offence under the syariah laws in most, if not all States for Malays to eat in public restaurants during the day in the month of Ramadan. I do not think it will help if the person who is not fasting for whatever reason hides at the back of the restaurant and eats away from the public eye.

7. I personally have never understood the need to compel people to fast or to deny the non-faster from eating if he wants to. I hold that faith is a personal matter.

8. Nevertheless,  the law is the law and it is reflective of the society that upholds it.

9. Anyway, for those who are going to fast because they want to fast, I wish them all happy fasting and may God bless you all.


Wednesday, July 13, 2011


1. When it comes to being a human, a person, a father,a  mother, brother, a sister, friend or a Citizen, it does not really matter whether you are UMNO, PAS, DAP, GERAKAN, PKR, SUPP or any political party.

2. It matters if you let your political affiliations or preferences overcome your sense of humanity, decency and principles.

Then you become a shameless human being. Then you are no different from the vultures that feed on dying bodies.

3. It matters if you spin lies, condemn fellow human beings and insult them as if they do not matter and you, and you alone are entitled to breathe the air that God has given all. Is not telling lies to the people akin to telling lies against God? No true believer will spin the truth to mislead others.

(Quran 39:60)  On the Day of Judgment wilt thou see those who told lies against God;- their
faces will be turned black; Is there not in Hell an abode for the Haughty?

(Quran 39:61)  But God will deliver the righteous to their place of salvation: no evil shall
touch them, nor shall they grieve.

Whatever that you want to take for yourself to the exclusion of others will be taken away from you in the most painful way possible - be it wealth, power, influence or health. Whenever you think you are high and mighty and your worldly cohorts conspire with you to falsify and spread msichief knowlingly, you will not be spared by God. He may let you enoy your illusionary happiness for a while. This is what God promises.
014.003  Those who love the life of this world more than the Hereafter, who hinder
(men) from the Path of God and seek therein something crooked: they are astray by a
long distance.

016.106  Any one who, after accepting faith in God, utters Unbelief,- except under
compulsion, his heart remaining firm in Faith - but such as open their breast to
Unbelief, on them is Wrath from God, and theirs will be a dreadful Penalty.

016.107  This because they love the life of this world better than the Hereafter: and
God will not guide those who reject Faith.

016.108  Those are they whose hearts, ears, and eyes God has sealed up, and they take
no heed.

Is there a true believer of God who can insult, oppress, and condemn someone whom he does not know? is not such a person a true defamer, a pemfitnah, a munafik?

The day you visit oppression and a feeling of helpness on another fellow human being, that is the day you free many souls. Free souls can move mountains, so to speak.

A person who has betrayed his own soul can never understand the power of the soul that cannot be bridled.

And no one , but God alone who has dominion over a person's soul.

Watch and you shall see.

Peace !

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Raja Aziz Addruse - rest in Peace .

Only yesterday evening, while lecturing my chambering students on the ethics of practice, I gave the example of Raja Aziz Addruse as the last gentleman lawyer. I recalled to them that Raja Aziz was the kind of legal practitioner who will give you the authorities that he has found which are in your favour, even though he is your opponent! My memories of him are that of an articulate lawyer and a gentleman.

I just came back from his house having conveyed my condolences to his wife. Raja Aziz passed away at age 74 today at about afternoon.

You can read more about this fine gentleman lawyer here.

May his soul rest in peace. Al-Fatihah.

Peace !

Monday, July 11, 2011

Bersih 2.0 and What it Showed.

I must admit that I was very concerned about the Bersih march - for very selfish reasons. In all sides of the march, my friends and relatives are involved. For the first time in my life, I saw that if there was any untoward incidents, it will involve friends and relatives. I had wanted a peaceful walk from day one and whatever view I could give to those that matter did not work at all.

On that day, I was away in Ipoh but I kept receiving smses on the unfolding events. I kept replying: "be peaceful, walk safely". 

When I came back to KL in the evening, I made calls to the various police stations to find out where and who are arrested. I must say the police were very helpful and there was no cloak and dagger. They had done a job that they had to do and were now preparing to release as many of the marchers as soon as possible. Most of those detained were released by 1 am after recording the necesssry statements. 

I must congratluate the young lawyers and LAC who were at hand to assist the detainess irregardless of whether they were Bersih or Patroit or anyone at the vaious police stations late into the night.

In this regard, I must also congratulate the Home Minister who must have ensured that the police do not unnnecesarily detain the ordinary citizens who walked because they felt that is thier way of expressing responsibility for the country.

Two things this Bersih walk showed - that Malaysians can assemble peacefully, and they have matured.  It also shows that many Malaysians are willing to take risks for their country. Secondly, this walk also showed that despite the pressure which I know the FRU and police force were facing, they largely exercised restraint and did the best they possibly can.

It would have been a 1Malaysia Bersih walk had the politicians not been in the fray.

Peace !

The Quranic and the Chronic !

The Quranic is not a hypocrite, the Chronic is

The “Quranic” in this country has come to mean the Muslim who is well versed with the Quranic verses. It is also assumed that the Quranic will also try his very best to adhere to the teachings in the Quran.  In other words, as Allah says in the Quran, he will walk his talk.

"Grievously odious is it in the sight of God that you say that which you do not” (Quran 61:3)
If you tell others to be fair and just in their speech or their dealings with other human beings, the Quranic should also try to be so. Otherwise he becomes chronic! Chronic is one who has a serious and habitual suffering – in this case suffering from the disease of hypocrisy. He becomes one who has knowledge of what the Quran teaches but chooses what to follow and what not to do.  In that sense, as the Quran itself has stated, the message does not touch him. He tells others to be factual in speech while he indulges in lies, spinning and clear defamation.

Say for example an ignoramus or a jahiluun habitually partakes in spinning and lying to shape public opinion, we may not take him too seriously. That is the job of the jahiluun who wants to get some worldly pleasure or seek worldly rewards.  On the other hand, what is the position when who is supposed to be knowledgeable in the Quran does the same thing? Does he not become a hypocrite and far more dangerous than the jahiluun? I term these people “the chronic quranics”.

“When the Hypocrites come to you, they say, "We bear witness that you are indeed the Apostle of God." Yes, God knows that you are indeed His Apostle, and God bears witness that the Hypocrites are indeed liars” (Quran 63:1)

Allah calls such people as liars. They use the Quran and the Prophet as a camouflage – either to dupe their friends or to have a veneer of the knowledgeable. Their main aim is to get grandeur and honour for themselves. They are characterised by constant words of “me”, “I” and “mine”. These hypocrites will only consider their own opinion as acceptable and anyone else’s will invite their rudeness and arrogance.  Due their arrogance, they forget that it is Allah who will give honour and take away honour from mortals.

“Say "O God! Lord of Power (And Rule), You give power to whom You please, and You strip off power from whom You please: You endue with honour whom You please, and You bring low whom You please: In Your hand is all good. Verily, over all things You have power”. (Quran: 3:26)

Unlike the jahiluun the “chronic quranics”, knowingly and arrogantly put aside the teachings of the Quran to achieve their worldly pleasures. They swing like a pendulum between promoting what is stated in the Quran and behaving completely contrary to the Quran when it suits their worldly purpose.  It is as if they have their own book or kitab from which they can choose to behave as they want independent of the Quran – yet they claim to be Quranic when actually they are chronic.

“What is the matter with you? How judge you? Or have you a book through which you learn that you shall have, through it whatever you choose? Or have you Covenants with Us to oath, reaching to the Day of Judgment, (providing) that you shall have whatever you shall demand? Ask you of them, which of them will stand surety/guarantee for that!” (Quran: 68: 36- 40)

Ego and Arrogance – the fall of Iblis

They will have no compunction to use their little knowledge of the Quran to declare the rest of the world wrong. They wantonly and readily condemn others. Criticising others and condemning others are not the same. Criticisms are aimed at learning and discussing to exchange ideas and views. The aim is constructive. Condemning others is intended to hurt, to belittle, to insult and pander to a certain misguided sector of the population so as to be popular. The result is destructive.

In the process they even insult the prophet by insulting those who spurn the beard or the jubah and so on. All these may be done by the jahiluun but should never be done by the Quranic who is supposed to be compassionate and emphatic. The problem is the chronic quranics do not want to remember what Allah has taught in the Quran because they are overcome by their ego and arrogance. 

“Revile not you those whom they call upon besides God, lest they out of spite revile God in their ignorance. Thus have We made alluring to each people its own doings. In the end will they return to their Lord, and We shall then tell them the truth of all that they did”. (Quran 6:108)

Is it not clear that Allah says revile not? Do not use abusive language against those who may have different views from you, even if they are wrong. What is the point in calling them “stupid, dungus, idiots, etc”?  The Quranic surely must know verse 4:148? Why do you want to abuse them when they have not hurt you or your family? How does insulting anyone help if your purpose is to invite them to the path of righteousness? Everyone who claims to be Quranic must surely know the following verse:

“Invite (all) to the Way of your Lord with wisdom and beautiful preaching; and argue with them in ways that are best and most gracious: for thy Lord knows best, who have strayed from His Path, and who receive guidance”. (Quran: 16.125)

While each of us are trying to contribute to the betterment of society, there is no need for name calling or mischievous sensational writing or talking. We are fellow human beings with fallings and weaknesses. Let us never forget that when we act unjustly to others in any name, that injustice will one day visit us. The Quranic should not take any sides except the side of justice. It is in recognition of this fact that Raperas have no problems dealing with just people who may belong to any differing organisations or political parties. 

Most of us are not all bad or all good except the hypocrite and those who are habitually unjust. Those who deify or worship their own ego will be drowned by their ego as happened to Firaun.

Peace !

Friday, July 8, 2011

JULY 9 - The Day Malaysians are tested

On this blog, I have on 2nd July 2011 appealed to ALL parties who were planning to march on 9th July not to do so. I was concerned about security and safety of the marchers based on information that I have.

Now it seems to me that the marching tomorrow will take place by various quarters. I am sure the majority of those who are going to march tomorrow are sincere and have thier own stand to express.

We live in a democracy and it is not uncommon to assemble and walk peacefully to express a point in the interest of the Nation.

Malaysians with differing opinions will be marching AND it is important to remember that it is a march by FELLOW MALAYSIANS.

We may differ in our views but we are Malaysians. We love this country of ours and we want the best for each other.

We are not each others' enemies.

I hope that the enforencement authorities will keep in mind that these are Malaysians. Among the group may be children, old people and women.

It will be a test day of how we treat each other - with love and respect or aggressive obsession with politics and authority.

To those who insist on marching tomorrow irregardless of what T-Shirts they wear or what group they represent, I wish them a safe outing and bring along with you the sense of humanity.

Peace !

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Bersih, UMNO Youth and Perkasa - call off street demonstrations if you care for the People !!!

No citizen in their right sense of mind will object to the campaign for free and fair elections. Bersih had its aim in the 8 points that it wanted to hand over to the Yang Di Pertuan Agung through the memorandum. This memorandum could very well have been delivered to the palace by just four or five Bersih representatives. But of course Bersih wanted to create as much awareness as possible among the citizens and hence the peaceful walk thorugh the streets of Kuala Lumpur. This is understandable. They wanted to exercise the democratic right of peaceful assembly and freedom of expression. All noble aims.

The situation however has changed. The events of past weeks have shown that Bersih's 8 points have received almost maximum publicity around the country. Blogs, newspapers and even the national television have publicised Bersih's objectives and much discussion have been aroused. People are aware. bersih's aim of creating awarenss have been achieved. Bersih has even succeded in getting all sorts of reactions from the public - political and apolitical. 

Bersih's constant aim was to have a peaceful march through the city of Kuala Lumpur. The emphasis being on PEACEFUL.

In reaction to Bersih, both UMNO Youth and Perkasa have announced that they too will walk through the streets to show their strength.  Both of these entities have numbers too. The Bar Council's entry into the "foray" has not helped to ease the tension but lead to further misunderstandings and "aggressive" reactions.

Somehow or other, the situation in and around Kuala Lumpur has been unnecessrily tense and worrisome these past few days and promises to become worse.

I have met and talked to almost all sides involved and to many ordinary, apolitical citizens.  I have had discussions with some of those responsible for the security of the Nation. I am convinced that the situation currently does not permit a street march. It is now too dangerous.

This is not the time to point fingers to apportion blame.

This is not the time to state who is responsible for the current security threat that we are faced with.

This is the time to understand that a street march planned for July 9 is indeed a security threat.

This is the time to act responsibly and to recognise the citizen's right to security and peace.  The right to peaceful assembly and freedom of expression has to temporarily take a back seat because the security situation does not permit it.

If Bersih organisers truly believe that they had noble aims, which many quarters think so, then this is the time to be consistent and do the noble act - call off the July 9 street march in the interest of peace and security. 

UMNO Youth being part of the very Barisan Nasional Government which should be responsible for the security of the Nation should immediately announce that they will NOT be walking through the streets on July 9.

I make the same appeal to my brothers and sisters in Perkasa - demi keamanan Negara dan cinta kepada rakyat, batalkan sahaja rancangan untuk berdemo pada July 9. Biarlah menjadi NGO yang menunjukkan contoh yang baik yang mampu mengutamakan keamanan negara dan kesejahteraan Rakyat jelata.

I also appeal to all the other NGOs, including Pekida to do the right thing - do not walk the streets on July 9 in groups. I make the same appeal to all Raperas.

We should NOT be ashamed to do the right thing even if it means changing our plans, swallowing our pride or egos or even temporarily suspending one of our democratic rights.

May Peace be with you all and may God guide you all to do the wise thing.