Religion

June 28, 2003

Religion is something that is easily dismissed by those who study science. The main reason for it, they say, is because God cannot be measured by empirical means. He cannot be measured, He cannot be touched, smelled, or taste. Yet if He were, would that not mean the end of the Mystery? Would we not be moaning about the death of one of Life’s greatest Pleasures?

Now, unlike the days that have gone before us, are truly the days of wonderment. Everyday something new is being discovered, and in some cases, something old is reaffirmed. There is much to see, much to do, much to discover by all.

We are no longer simply the people who had to slave all day and sometimes all night to put food on the table. At the end of the day our minds crave stimulation, intellectual arguments, we want to fill this curiosity that is burning within us. We have the time to do it. We have the energy.

Most of us are comfortable in knowing what they already know. Many of us are content to merely watch and absorb new information. However, there are many more of us who are not.

Many of the youths of today, dream as the youths before them, of making a difference in the world. They dream of having a voice, and to make those in power listen to their voices so that the world might be a better place for them when it is time to hand over the reins.

And they have the means and opportunities to do so. However, their focus has gone awry. What you hear students and people talking on the street nowadays is not how they may serve their country, but on what is current, what is new, and what is passé. Can we blame them?

In Malaysia, the youths, with the exceptional few, have been trained to think shallowly. What matters is that you get a degree. You get a good, high paying job that will enable you to live out your lives as you want. Don’t take risks! That’s too dangerous! Would you want your poor old mom and dad to live outside on the streets?

What do you mean that you want to be a writer? Don’t you know that writers are all poor? What do you mean that you want to be a journalist? Don’t you know that they all smoke and die young? And you want to be a police? Whatever for? They are all corrupt and useless people, only Malays go there! You want to be a teacher? Those are all dead-end jobs and low pay, only failures go there!

Be a businessman, like your Chinese uncle. Be a doctor, like your Indian father. Take advantage of the system you’re a bumi* aren’t you?

And with parents mouthing statements like these the leaders of today are wondering what happened to the leaders of tomorrow. I mean it. I know what my friends and I face, Many of our parents, they say, want the best for us, but they don’t realise that what may the best for them, need not necessarily be the best for us.

It’s hard for me to find someone who will happily engage me in an hour or two, just to discuss politics, (not withstanding that the leaders of today, who are parents, have banned students from being political until they come out of college/university) philosophy, among other matters. Things that challenge and stimulate the minds in form of discussions are very rarely found. Why? Because our parents dismiss them as nonsense. After all, they don’t bring in money, and they encourage you to loiter.

If they would make these things accessible to youths and to give them truly a platform to discuss them, maybe the youths of today will be slightly more equipped to be the leaders of tomorrow. By the way, for those of you who say premarital sex is bad and etc, please don’t attend. I’m all for the exchange of ideas, but looking down from a moral high ground makes me ever so slightly nauseous.

*bumi- Malays or those who have been here before the British

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