Kampong Kirkby

By P Chong                                  Saturday, 23 January 2010

Kirkby College Badge

It’s most refreshing when I look back to the days when 300 of us Malaysian students of different colour, race & creed were living in distinct harmony & peace, 8,000 miles away from home, in a little spot near Liverpool, UK, we called Kampong Kirkby.We felt proud to be who we were . . . Malaysians. I doubt we were even conscious of the fact that Azimah was different from Kim or she from Arul. We saw & perceived each other as friends & colleagues, though the first was of Malay origin, with Kim as a Chinese and Arul of Indian background.(Not real names).That was in the 50s & 60s of an era gone by & sadly missed.

The state of affairs in Malaysia these days is far from desired, and absolutely unbelievable that racial disharmony & discontent can come to breed & exist through the politicisation, polarisation & manipulation of the ruling UMNO. When looking in from outside & abroad the country, we can see how futile, ridiculous and indeed sad though laughable the narrow-mindedness of the UMNOputras have turned out to be – desperate for power to be perpetually in their hands. The aftermath & virtual defeat from the last election have made this desperation even more so. Who in the saneness state of mind would imagine playing politics & connotation with a little religious word which called for reverence & respect in the name of our same Maker.

They have been playing the political game for far too long & are now losing their sense of direction, good judgement, fair treatment & blind for the overall well being of the country. People can get so emotionally uptight that temperature flare & tempest roar! Devious politicians know full well that with a little political push & pull, an ugly scenario can erupt . . . not again with May 13 history repeating itself!

The world today is an open world, transparent & unconfined. Globalisation & the high tech world of instant communication mean that the people around the world get to know instantly whatever is happening. You can’t conceal . . . you are revealed!

With hindsight, I was looking back at the life & love of the Malaysian teacher-trainees in Kirkby College. It was so beautiful. Can’t help wanting to relive those days all over again . . . when relationship was good and life was free & easy. I could see Azimah’s curl & lovely hair style with her face & smile clearly visible . . . Arul looked equally great in western blouse & skirt as in her Indian saree. When different festivals came around such as Hari Raya, Chinese New Year or Deepavali, we all got together in joint celebrations, dressing up in sarong & kebaya, cheongsam or saree. The array of different colours just enhanced further the beauty of the joyous occasion.


I remember too, the opportunity of enjoying our cultural concert of a variety of music & dance. There was this diminutive Malay lady singer who rendered equally well both English & Malay songs with her golden voice. Not forgetting though, there was this equally small Singh who could sing & match melodiously with her. No names mentioned here, but I am sure Kirkbyites would remember them.


Alas the College song we sang of the “Land of Golden Chersonese” that seemed so far away has finally gone away beyond our reach! As one famous writer would utter: “Cry, My Beloved Country!”

With all the rich natural resources, Malaysia should be “exploding” in its economic development. Instead it is “imploding” within with all the trivialities of race & religion.

Everything could be set right again if political vision is on the right track. The ruling elites have been fortunate thus far to have a population mass so docile & resilient, but with mounting pressure & continuing unfair superimposition, all hell can break lose and then paradise would be lost!

Tell yourself this:

Whatever to be it’s up to me!”

From

A Chinese by Descent

An Australian by Consent

Related Posts by the same writer:

1. Kirkby – Down Memory Lane (June 2009)

2. Kirkby College Memorabilia (August 2009)

3. Tun Dr. Mohamed Mahathir – A Tribute With Repute (August 2009)

4. Malaysia Merdeka! (August 2009)


Why Do I Blog?

By P Chong                                                                                            Saturday, 9 January 2010

To me, blogging is undoubtedly the purest form of journalism. With due respect to all the news media, how much of what we read is believable or is questionable.

Blogging provides me an avenue to have my printed word, not mere verbal convention, for all to read freely without restraint. I could blog just about anything with the freedom of content.

Why People Blog?

It’s an ideal place, without any external imposition & with complete freedom to work out my feeling about different things, be it political, economical, social or any other.

Blogging affords me the opportunity to be a part not only of the community in which I live but also the world at large. Electronically speaking, the world indeed is a small place. Talk about globalisation . . . blog enables me to achieve that.

I write & speak without restraint to a faceless audience, who may know me increasingly if they have been following my blog, and as I said in my blog:

With a lifetime of experiences to share with the world at large, I am electronically transferring all my thoughts & philosophy onto the blogosphere – to be accessed by one & all globally. Interestingly & provokingly, readers will have both the leisure & pleasure of savouring a wide range of subjects in:

love & romance

arts & science

facts & fiction

reminiscences & presence

greed & creed

economics & politics

fancy & reality

nature & venture

spiritual & secular

life & travel

poems

Remember to leave behind a line or two of your comments that I may know of your coming & going. It’s like signing my Guest Book which I would eternally treasure.

Having lived a greater part of my adult life in a pathetic country like Malaysia, and now living joyously in the “Lucky Country” of Australia, the concept of “All men are created equal” takes on a better perspective & understanding.

The Scale of Equilibrium in justice & fairness must prevail.

Corruption, cronyism & nepotism not to assail.

Please circulate & share my blogosphere with one & all.

Paul Chong

A Chinese by Descent

An Australian by Consent

(Dedicated to God for Guidance, Power & Strength)

The Gloom & Doom That Zoom!


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My message that was written & delivered on Sunday, 11 July 1999 bears witness

to the present day economic crisis with most scenario cases falling into places.

This is indeed shocking & absolutely unbelievable!

I had stood in front of the pulpit that Sunday morning with about a hundred congregation in attendance. I began the delivery with an introduction of a legendary story about the fact that “No one will get out of this world alive!”

This wonderful legend centres on the servant of a wealthy merchant in Baghdad who claimed to have seen DEATH in the market place raising its hand to strike him. Frightened as he was, he escaped & rushed home begging his master to lend him his fastest horse so that he could get away.

but where will you go?” asked the merchant.

I will go to Samarra,”explained the servant. “DEATH will not find me there.”

So the merchant gave his servant the fastest horse in his stables, and the servant rode swiftly off to the city of Samarra where he hoped to hide.

The merchant later went to the market himself to get his own supplies. While there he too saw DEATH. So he inquired of DEATH, “Why did you raise your hand to strike my servant a while ago?”

DEATH replied, “Actually I meant him no harm at that moment. Raising my arm was a gesture of surprise. You see, I didn’t expect to find him here, for I have an appointment with him tonight at Samarra!”

The servant of Baghdad would discover that no matter how fast the horse not how far the journey, he could not escape his appointment with DEATH.

The first human doom was spelt out right after Adam & Eve were driven out of the Garden of Eden when they disobeyed God by eating the forbidden fruit, “ . . . for when you eat of it you will surely die.” (Genesis 2 : 16 -17) . Human beings have been suffering & dying . . . paying the penalty of sin ever since the dawn of mankind.

Gross individualism & self-centeredness under the guise of human rights & individual freedom have contributed much to our present day problems. The realm of greed & covetousness further accentuates & breeds the abominable trend of modern day living of Sodom & Gomorrah – condoned particularly by the Western capitalistic world. When people deviate from the fundamental through the process of rationalization & justification, Satan under the guise of individualism & self-centeredness springs forth in all its ugliness.

God’s Commandments are very precise. There are no grey areas as people made out to be. Human ingenuity & supposedly superior intellect can only lead along the broad & straight road to condemnation and the gates of hell. Moral degradation is evident everywhere & nobody seem to care. With God you do not compromise to suit your own convenience & purpose. Our God is a God of order. His Commandments are expected to be obeyed.

It’s inevitable we’re heading towards the days of Sodom & Gomorrah . . . even worse. Biblically, those days were rather confined & restricted in terms of territories. Present day situation is happening globally! In Matthew 10:15, it is said: “I tell you the truth, it will be more bearable for Sodom & Gomorrah on the day of judgement than for . . . “.

Are the final days upon us? Is mankind so blind as to be wiped out by the twin perils of Armageddon and a doomsday comet? Signs are everywhere of Jesus’ Second Coming & God will establish Heaven on Earth, creating a virtual paradise for the true & faithful believers. The righteous will inherit life eternal in all its glories. Unless the unrighteous repent eternal condemnation is a certainty. Just like the days of old, as with the people of Sodom & Gomorrah. Unconcerned & believing not, the present generation of people will face judgement in a much more drastic way!

Standing on the threshold of the 21st Century & the advent of Y2K, world leaders through the United Nations are charting a new course for mankind. The plan calls for the yielding of the sovereignty of all nations to the United nations. It also plan to unite all religions. Foremost in the play of the “Big Brother Syndrome” is the US. The course of history is going to be changed drastically. The following features would become real:

  • A borderless world economy has already occurred in Europe

  • Collapse of world economy & globalisation (Rev. 18)

  • Introduction of Smartcard with “666” as identification (Rev 13)

  • Earthquake & natural calamities

  • Economic crisis in US, Europe & Japan

  • Loss of confidence in US currency

  • The rise & fall of Euro Dollars

  • Peace Treaty (Daniel 9:27)

  • Building of the Third Temple (II Thessalonians 2:4)

  • Desolation of Jerusalem (Luke 21:20 – 24)

  • Revelation of Anti-Christ & tribulation ( II Thessalonians 2: 1 -12)

This is indeed food for thought. Our days on earth are naturally numbered as they are. What more with such swift & cataclysmic changes. In the present era of instant communication & super highways, adverse happenings are verified truism that can be watched realistically on our small screen almost immediately as they happen.

NO MORE HEARSAY . . . MORE LIKE NEARSAY!

There is however hope & love for true believers. Our Lord Jesus lives. He is the same today as yesterday. He is alive and coming back to fulfil all the promises of God. All the other prophets in all religions have died and they are not coming back again, for they are all dead!

To be prepared rather than to be despaired!

Repent & be prepare for the Judgement Day is upon us. We would not be caught with “drink & be merry for tomorrow we die” attitude or be famished with “wine women & song” as though there’s no tomorrow.

God is offering you the gift of salvation & all you need do is to repent for your sins and accept Jesus as your personal Saviour and Lord of your life. God is gracious & forever faithful to His promises. His arms are wide open to receive you. There is a room waiting for you in Heaven . . . hopefully & prayerfully our final destination.

Paul Chong

The Danger Of Losing One’s Culture


With the imposition or superimposition of culture in today’s society through globalisation, instant communication & exposure . . . nobody is isolated nor can anyone withstand the onslaught of western influence. The perils & thrills of modern life kill & spill all hope of preserving the sanity of life. The “iron curtain” has been torn down and now the “bamboo curtain” is fast disappearing!

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The Chinese society is essentially built around the family system & strong kinship ties. As a method of bonding, honour & respect for each respective individual, and also to distinguish each member of the family within the kinship hierarchy, respectful names are accorded. We do not address anyone by his or her own name. Plain address of “uncle” or “auntie” is not enough (although acceptable in modern time). To distinguish whether the relative is from the paternal or maternal side, we address an uncle from paternal side as “su su” and “chiu chiu” from the maternal.

Informality & friendliness must in no way interfere with the culture system, as to dispense with the question of respect when a son addresses his own father by his name or similarly with his father’s contemporary! This reflects badly on the family itself. Like I used to say, “Such a nice boy but badly brought up!”

All these respectful addresses keep everybody in his or her own respective places & status in life. By such addresses, the generation hierarchy is known straightaway. Even with outsiders & strangers, a person of good breeding will accord respectful address of titles by virtue of age differences & generation gaps.

We have inherited a civilisation of thousand & thousand of years old, steeped in rich culture & tradition, unsurpassed by any other in the world. The fact that this civilisation remains unbroken, undiminished & ever awakening, speaks well for itself & that the Chinese must be doing something right down through the ages. There just got to be a system by which asll things function. Can you imagine what chaos will there be if one planet in the universe decides to go on its own? They say that the chain is as strong as its weakest link.

The question of personal freedom can sometimes swing beyond the pendulum limit. Self-centredness & gross individualism have contributed much chaos. It is all a question of disregarding others. Egotism is spelt with the capital “I” and “you” is always spelt with a small “y”. When we start to care less for the other person & let self-centredness & gross individualism take over us, something is bound to break. Today’s social problems are undoubtedly attributed to such predominant thinking. We’re becoming impersonal, totally insensitive & lacking in the element of care. The story of the Good Samaritan no longer holds as much attention as the negative & sensational stories of murder, divorce or hot gossips. Nnnnnnn]].,bnmnnnnnnnnnnnnn.Just where is our world heading to? All the multi-media lend support to sensational & negative news – for such promotion is commercially profitable, as against good old positive news. Even politicians dependent upon on their constituent support for their political well-being are swayed & blown with the wind.

We no longer accept the simple truth of black & white. With the growing & dominant “grey” group, justification & rationalisation breed polarisation. Varieties of interest groups mushroom lending support to just about anybody. The saddest aspect for the nation is that political leaders, for want of political support & survival, prefer a low profile approach & not even taking a firm stand.

I may not be entirely correct in my rambling thoughts and would be most glad to hear from anyone who thinks otherwise or has anything more to add.

Paul Chong

A Chinese by Descent

An Australian by Consent

Saturday, 12 September 2009