Archive for June, 2009

Letting Go….

June 18, 2009

mandala

Lately I had traveled very far away to visit again some of my old friends who had been involved in the political struggle for decades long. Since the past 10 years , I had make many trips to visit them. But, this journey infect had brought me something very unexpected and yet very reflective.

Along the journey , I stared at the mountains, forest and blue sky that I was hardly able to see in the city. The deep feeling of familiarity arose in my heart. Somehow, I know that whatever journey/path I am making now and the past are all connected to them. Our encounter in this life is not something coincidence. Since I was young student activist in early 20, whenever I traveled along this long journey towards the north of Malaysia, the same feeling always appeared within me, even though I had not met any of them.

This time, our old friends are getting older. Getting older physically and mentally. When death is approaching us. None of us can really figure out how well we can manage it and able to let go totally whatever we cling to in this life. No one can avoid facing death.

Be you are the most powerful, wealthier, famous person in the world,
You are entitled to death.

Life and death , alike the twins who is always accompanying each other. When there is no death, then there will be no life or alive again.

However, we infect never know how we will behave when death is just in front of us or near the corner. Somehow, I had witnessed so many old activists, friends or relatives that I close to. Witnessing their sufferings of cannot letting go their past and their clinging to power/name/fame and wealth.

Be they are the powerful person at home, workplace, society or nation. Seems many of them are enduring the hard time to let go. Let go their position and power when times come. Let go their clinging of self righteousness.

Being the activists and feeling good that they had done great things for society.

The older they are the more insecure and also hard to let go. Fail to realise the born/life, sickness , old age and death is part of our life.

Therefore, some of them turned to be dictatorial behaviors, or keep blaming of their failures caused by others for self pityness.

The worse case was mentally turned to be child alike and clinging to past glorious memory.

The key root cause of the problem is due to our mind cannot let go, especially let go of “self“.

Cannot accept no matter how great we think we are, eventually all of us at the end will reach to same point of the life journey. It Is the destiny of death. Therefore, we indeed have nothing able to hold on. Life essence at the end is empty.

There is no death, then there will be another life/alive.
Life and death is merely a continuous circle.

From these experiences, it has indeed reminded me again the teaching gave by our Tibetan Lama teacher: “We are so busy preparing many things in life. The end , we forget prepare ourselves to die. Prepare to make our death as a homework and making death as the last practice of letting go of self”

He reminded us, don’t ever think you are great whenever you practice generosity and helps others, especially those involve in social or political work. Infect, the most righteous person are those who are most harder to let go. Behind the “righteousness”, the sense of “self”. The ego clinging of feeling good when people think you are good and special. All these self love behavior will eventually enhance our deep self clinging that cause sufferings to ourselves and others.

“Self righteousness embody the strong ego clinging will be eventually caused self sufferings to ourselves the most!! “- this is the last thought and the only thought arise in my mind in this long journey lately, especially after visited these old friends from far.

Kuala Lumpur
18 June 2009

 

Prayer-flags-over-Dingboche

Advertisements

“Dogmatism” of “ism”

June 13, 2009
wulan_4 june_photos_tiananmen-hk

Source: Wulan Dari

It has been many times, i am keep asking to myself or being asked by some friends :
Are you a Buddhist now?
Are you a Socialist now?
How can a Socialist is a Buddhist ? Or vice versa?
The enlightenment in the Buddhism has any similarity with the liberation cause of socialism?

For the sake of intellectual discourse and explanation for my own and other query. I have been investigating and thinking on this for many years.

Till a point in one of my Tibetan lama/master teachings and His Holiness Dala Lama memoir, its eventually ease my puzzle.

In the Buddhism, the final enlightenment, it refer to moment we are finally realized, recognized and experienced the nature of our original awakening mind: the awakening Buddha mind. When this realization comes, our mind is at the stage of clear, calm, compassionate and wisdom bonded will arise. This stage of mind only occur when our mind is free of any thoughts and returns to it natural awake stage. “Thoughts” referring again to disturbing emotions, desires, anger/ego clinging and ignorance. Be it is a good or bad thoughts.

In socialism, the political economy theory of it strongly emphasize on the principle of equality and fairness to all. It refer to loving kindness and compassionate when come to under privilege or the marginalized people. However, to reach to these such ideal society system and people are truly embodies such just value. It need a very deep inner value internalization and also a kind of mind training/mind awakening.

For many socialists I had encountered, those who are able to integrate their ideology into the real life practice are infect not many. But they are also many of them, who also live their life and their principle integrating in their family life, work place and also the nation. They are people who are having the purest heart/mind, selflessness and deep compassion to the society and world.

In a point of my life, I was in a stage of skepticism. After witnessed too many double standard of people behaviors and its organizations that those claimed to be progressive and socialists, but infect not practicing its in their real life.

However, the Tibetan lama ‘s teaching had given me a sharp pointing to
answer these despairs.

Being an un enlightened beings, including the activists or any leaders who claimed to struggle for human liberation cause. Eventually, at the end, the really enemy is “US” , is “I”. This “US” and “I” – referring to ego /self clinging that is apparently the fundamental root cause of all the problems of “double standard” happened. The deviant of the movement principle and the corrupted leaders and its movement. It happened to all the ex communist, current “pseudo communist” country such as China. Or it can happen in any religions institutions and their spiritual leaders/followers.

Therefore, it is very clear that eventually whether we belong to what “ ism” – either Buddhism, socialism or even an non faith believer. All make no different indeed. It is only a Label we like to put on ourselves and others. Alike the dualistic mind.
When our mind are full of desires, ego clinging and ignorance , we have no different among us.

Keeping our mind moment to moment be awake, impartial compassionate, generosity and happy, eventually has nothing to do indeed whether we are Buddhist or not. Enlightenment is not only belongs to Buddha, as Buddha said, all sentient beings are potential to be Buddha.

Bodhisattvas and Buddha appears in many forms in real life and their dharma activities appear in all forms. Even they are not Buddhists or non faith followers.

Dogmatism will be end ,when we can truly realize that “ism” is only a bridge that lead us to across the ocean of sufferings.

13 Jun 2009
Kuala Lumpur

The Grandma of Our Motherland: Shamsiah Fakeh

June 12, 2009

!cid_00f701c9eafb$7541d7b0$0401a8c0@zulhabri60f42f

 

We like to call her Grandma (or in Malay: nenek). This was how we called Shamsiah Fakeh whenever we met her many years ago before she passed away last year 2008.

Some of us, who were working on alternative women oral history documentation project and also women activists who used to read her name in our history book as the founder of AWAS (Angkatan Wanita Sedar). We like to regards her Grandma. Grandma always in tears whenever she met us , who was very happy that younger generation still remembers the past patriots and not demonized her.

The last I met her was in the year 2004. I together with her and her late husband, Ibrahim , who was also one of the earliest rare and progressive trade unionist in Malaya, attended a dinner gathering organized by socio political activists. They were so happy and in tears again.

“Tears” was the strongest memory of me on her. And I could feel that the tears was filled with her deepest love and happiness to this nation. Even she spoke little due to her sickness. “tears” of love was infect the most touching memory we can recall on her now. As a Granma patriot. Her tears should always reminding us the contribution of these countless selfless souls who had scarified their life for the national independence.

Therefore, whoever ask me: “who is Shamsiah Fakeh ?”

I will say, we all should call her – The Grandma of our motherland.

The Grandma , who had fought for the national independence. The Grandma ,who was the earliest pioneer to shape the progressive role/status of women in Malaya. She dare to challenge the conservative culture and the patriarchy system of the time, which kept the woman role in society as secondary & domestication. If we want to refer who was one of the earliest Malay Muslim women/leader in Malaya who was unconventional. Shamsiah Fakeh was one of them.

AWAS , was one of the outstanding, courage and patriotic women movement forces who had fought against the colonialization in the last century. Led by those brave and free soul of young Malayan women . They were mostly Malay Muslim women.

Without AWAS, there will be no liberation of Malaya from the cruelty of colonizers. No progression of the women status and movement in Malaysia and Singapore of today.

May her tears always remind us of this.

Kuala Lumpur
12 June 2009
—————————————————————————————-

Note: For those who are keen to read about her extraordinary life and thought, can buy a copy of her english version memoir.
Soon to be circulated in the market in end of June 2009.

“The Memoirs of Shamsiah Fakeh: From AWAS to 10th Regiment”

Shamsiah Fakeh
Publisher: SIRD
ISBN-13: 978-983-9782-77-2
189 pages
RM30.00

Shamsiah Fakeh was a leader in the independence movement among a group of Malay women who fought persistently right into the jungles of Malaya. She was the head of Angkatan Wanita Sedar (AWAS), which joined forces with Angkatan Pemuda Insaf (API) as flag bearers in the demand for independence from the British. Her collaboration with Ahmad Boestamam, the API head, stoked the spirits of a substantial number of Malayan youths to take up arms against the colonisers. Shamsiah also joined the 10th Regiment, the Malay wing of the Malayan Communist

She got lost a few times in the jungle in pursuit of the armed struggle for independence. Her struggle was regardless of place, whether in the jungle or the international arena. She and her husband Ibrahim were sent to China, Indonesia and Vietnam within a framework of inflaming the spirit of nationalism among the people of Southeast Asia who were still colonised then. Shamsiah sacrificed her life and limb to free Malaya through a path that was hers to choose. After she was expelled from the MCP, she stayed on in China and continued her life there working in a ball-bearing factory. She and her family finally returned to Malaysia on 23 July 1994 after the Peace Accords between the MCP and the Malaysian and Thai governments were signed in Haadyai, Thailand, in 1989. Upon her return home, she lived a moderate life in her old age with her children and grandchildren. She never regretted rising against the British and never regretted going into the jungle to join the Communist Party. She was grateful that her struggle had unsettled the colonisers.

She believed and was confident that the young generation who understood the true history of the country would be able to find their direction.

To purchase this book, you can:

a) Drop in at the following address:
GB Gerakbudaya Enterprise Sdn Bhd
No.11, Lorong 11/4E
46200 Petaling Jaya,
Selangor, Malaysia
Tel: (603) 7957 8343/8342
Fax: (603) 7954 9202

b) Send an email at sird@streamyx.com or gerakbudaya@pd.jaring.com

c) Buy it online at http://www.gerakbudaya.com

d) Get it from all major bookstores in Malaysia

WHY Hadyai Peace Accord was signed in 1989 ? Ask Ex Premier Dr Mahathir Mohamad to Answer it !

June 2, 2009
The  historical Hadyai Peace Accord signed on the 2 Dec 1989, Hadyai, Thailand -Signatory parties :Government of Malaysia,Thailand and Chin Peng , Communist Party Malaya -Source:http://matamin.blogspot.com/)

The historical Hadyai Peace Accord signed on the 2 Dec 1989, Hadyai, Thailand -Signatory parties :Government of Malaysia,Thailand and Chin Peng , Communist Party Malaya -Source:http://matamin.blogspot.com/)

Ps: A copy of peace accord that was signed in the 2 Dec 1989can be read online: http://2.bp.blogspot.com/___COHz8Ba5E/SO81KvUqqdI/AAAAAAAAAjE/Mk7fLtf9P-A/s1600-h/Boss.jpg

 

After PSM (Parti Sosialis Malaysia) called for the support of allowing Chin Peng return to Malaysia in their national congress last Saturday. 31 May 2009 in Ipoh, Perak.

ANOTHER PSM (Persatuan Sejarah Malaysia) ;-0 also called for setting up the museum to tribute those polices and armies of Malaya/Malaysian and included the “members of the Home Guards as well as the British, Gurkha and Commonwealth troops.”

In my opinion, of course any parities have their own truth/version of history to tell the world. Why not? We should be open to listen and given the freedom to know, somehow, the decision will be make by people itself. So, the more various versions of historical stories and versions are good to be spread and shared. The more museum of various versions are welcome! But not only ONE version.

To show those cruelty actions of each other did during imperialist occupatios in the past is a good education for younger generation Especially to deeply aware, reflect and resolute in not repeating those mistakes of the past . Esepcially, the most important lesson for me is that a civilized nation in this century should not resolve conflict with violence approach. Especially ,waging invasion military actions/ war is an acts against humanity. Especially those who try to use their military forces to colonialise/oppress other countries such as the British, Dutch, Japanese and others imperialist power of the past! Or using war/military force attacking /silence to others who has difference ideologies or demands for a nation, such as what hapen in Burma, Sri Lanka, Tibet and etc.

“Violence of war” is also including those who use detention without trial to punish others, or use violence detention and abuse treatment towards those dissidents. This is also an act of violence and cruelty, alike the arms force military actions.

However, the most unbelievable and a biggest joke for me is the call from the Persatuan Sejarah Malaysia –call to regard those “members of the Home Guards as well as the British, Gurkha and Commonwealth troops.” –

Regards these imperialist military forces as the heroes and patriots in defending our nation ? How can the Persatuan Sejarah Malaysia- PSM raise such statement?

Is this a joke? Tribute to the colonizers and its military forces as the heroes of our nation????

Can you believe it?

So its means Communist Party Of Malaya was the colonizer that had colonized Malaya/Malaysia . The “members of the Home Guards as well as the British, Gurkha and Commonwealth troops.” Those imperialist troops had liberated us from the CPM? And liberated us from Merdeka (independence) in the 31 August 1957?

So, the world war 2 Japanese invasion and British colonialisation were both non exist at all? The suffering of those civilians in the Chinese villages, comfort women and those were killed and hang by imperialists armies were non exist at all? And, our beloved one, including my uncle who was killed by Japanese facist militry was not true?

Infect these few days after the heated debates on the issue of traitors, heroes and colonialism. Now, I really miss very much to hear the loud and anger voice of our previous Prime Minister, Dr Mahathir Mohamad who is always so loud in his criticism on the western colonialism of the third world and Malaya.

Where is Dr Mahathir? I really miss so much his vocal anti western imperialism voice in the midst of these debates. Wish him can tells us who are the true nationalist and fought for the nation independent? Why did Dr Mahathir in his time as the premier supported the peace agreement with Communist Party of Malaya on the 2 Dec 1989?

Or, maybe those who against the Chin Peng and CPM should also question or blame Dr Mahathir and BN of those time make such a silly decision to have peace accord with CPM! As some people said, just shot them to DEATH! No MERCY for communist and its supporters!!

Kuala Lumpur
3 June 2009

For more information, please read :

Chin Peng finds support in PSM Humayun Kabir | May 31, 09
http://www.malaysiakini.com/news/105500

Create a ‘heroes and traitors’ museum
http://www.malaysiakini.com/news/105641

Who is to be blamed – Chin Peng or Tunku?
Lee Ban Chen | Jun 2, 09 (Malaysiakini.com)
http://www.malaysiakini.com/opinions/105629

Penandatangan Yang Bersejarah -2 Jun 2009

http://matamin.blogspot.com/2009/06/penandatanganan-yang-bersejarah.html

-you can see the short video clip online of this historical peace accord signing  event on the 2 Dec 1988, Hadyai, Thailand.