Sunday, October 09, 2011

X-files - How the tax payers money were spent ?

‎1. PKFZ RM12bill
2. Submarine RM500mil
3. Simedarby RM964mil
4. Paya Indah Westland RM88mil
5. Posmalaysia (transmile) RM230mil lost
6. Eurocopter deal RM1bil waste?
7. Terengganu Stadium Collapsed RM292mil
8. MRR2 repair cost RM70mil
9. Maybank Overpay for BII RM4bil
10. Tourism -NYY kickback RM10mil
11. 3 paintings bought by MAS------ RM 1.5M
12. Overpayment by Sport Ministry ----- RM 8.4M
13. London 's white elephant sports complex -- RM 70M
14. MRR2 Repairs---------- RM 70M
15. MATRADE repairs --------- RM 120M
16. Cost of new plane used by PM----- RM 200M
17. InventQ irrecoverable debt ------ RM 228M
18. Compensation for killing crooked bridge -- RM 257M
20. Lost in selling Augusta ------- RM 510M
21. Worth of AP given out in a year ---- RM 1.8B
22. Submarines (future Muzium Negara artifacts)- RM 4.1B
23. PSC Naval dockyard -------- RM 6.75B
24. The Bank Bumiputra twin scandals in the early 1980s saw US$1 billion (RM3.2 billion in 2008 ringgit)
25. The Maminco attempt to corner the world tin market in the 1980s isbelieved to have cost some US$500 million. (RM1.6 billion)
26. Betting in foreign exchange futures cost Bank Negara Malaysia RM30 billion in the 1990s.
27. Perwaja Steel resulted in losses of US$800 million (RM2.56 billion).
28. Use of RM10 billion public funds in the Valuecap Sdn. Bhd. operation to shore up the stock market
29. Banking scandal of RM700 million losses in Bank Islam
30. The sale of M.V. Agusta by Proton for one Euro making a loss of €75.99 million (RM 348 million)
31. Wang Ehsan from oil royalty on Terengganu RM7.4 billion from 2004 - 2007
32. For the past 10 years since Philharmonic Orchestra wasestablished, this orchestra has swallowed a total of RM500 million.Hiring a kwai-lo CEO with salary of more than RM1 M per annum !!
33. In Advisors Fees, Mahathir was paid RM180,000, Shahrizat AbdulJalil (women and social development affairs) RM404,726 and Abdul HamidOthman (religious) RM549,675 per annum
34. The government has spent a total of RM3.2 billion in teachingMaths and Science in English over the past five years. Out of theamount, the government paid a whopping RM2.21 billion for the purchaseof information and computer technology (ICT) equipments which it isunable to give a breakdown. Govt paid more than RM6k per notebook vsper market price of less than RM3k through some new consortiums thatsetup just to transact the notebook deal. There was no math &science content for the teachers and the notebooks are all with theteachers' children now.
35. The commission paid for purchase of jets and submarines to twoprivate companies Perimeker Sdn Bhd and IMT Defence Sdn Bhd amounted toRM910 million.
36. RM300 million to compensate Gerbang Perdana for the RM1.1 billion "Crooked Scenic Half-Bridge"
37. RM1.3 billion have been wasted building the white elephantCustoms, Immigration and Quarantine (CIQ) facilities on cancellation ofthe Malaysia-Singapore scenic bridge
38. RM 100 million on renovation of Parliament building and leaks
39. National Astronaut Programme - RM 40 million
40. National Service Training Programme - yearly an estimate of RM 500 million
41. Eye on Malaysia - RM 30 million and another RM5.7 million of free ticket
42. RM 2.4 million on indelible ink
43. Samy announced in September 2006 that the government paidcompensation amounting to RM 38.5 billion to 20 highway companies. RM380 million windfalls for 9 toll concessionaires earned solely from thetoll hike in 2008 alone.
44. RM32 million timber export kickbacks involving companies connected to Sarawak Chief Minister and his family.
45. Two bailouts of Malaysia Airline System RM7.9 billion. At atime when MAS incurring losses every year, RM1.55 million used to buythree paintings to decorate its chairman's (Munir) office.
46. Putra transport system bailout which cost RM4.486 billion.
47. STAR-LRT bailout costing RM3.256 billion.
48. National Sewerage System bailout costing RM192.54 million.
49. Seremban-Port Dickson Highway bailout costing RM142 million.
50. Kuching Prison bailout costing RM135 million.
51. Kajian Makanan dan Gunaan Orang Islam bailout costing RM8.3 million.
52. Le Tour de Langkawi bailout costing RM 3.5 Million.
53. Wholesale distribution of tens of millions of shares in BursaMalaysia under guise of NEP to cronies, children and relatives of BNleaders and Ministers worth billions of ringgits.
54. Alienation of tens of thousands of hectares of commercial landsand forestry concessions to children and relatives of BN leaders andMinisters worth tens of billions of ringgits.
55. Since 1997, Petronas has handed out a staggering 30 billionringgit in natural gas subsidies to IPPs who were making huge profits.In addition, there were much wastages and forward trading of Petronasoil in the 1990s based on the low price of oil then. Since the accountsof Petronas are for the eyes of Prime Minister only, we have absolutelyno idea of the amount.
56. RM5700 for a car jack worth RM50
57. Government-owned vehicle consumed a tank of petrol worth RM113 within a few minutes
58. A pole platform that cost RM990 was bought for RM30,000
59. A thumbdrive that cost RM90 was bought for RM480
60. A cabinet that cost RM1,500 was bought for RM13,500
61. A flashlight that cost RM35 was bought for RM143
62. Expenses for 1 Malaysia campaign paid to APCO?
63. RM17 billion subsidy to IPP

Saturday, October 08, 2011

2012 Budget Highlights

The following are the highlights of the 2012 Budget tabled by Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak, who is also Finance Minister, at the Dewan Rakyat on Friday:

* Government will introduce other transformation programmes, culminating in the National Transformation Policy, effective 2011-2020.

* RM232.8 billion allocated to implement all government development plans, focusing on the well-being of the rakyat, with RM181.6 billion for operating expenditure and RM51.2 billion for development expenditure.

* RM13.6 billion allocated to the social sector, including education, training, health, welfare, housing and community development.

* Government will implement a special stimulus package through private financing initiative, through which total projects amounting RM6 billion will be carried out.

* 2012 announced as the year of National Innovation Movement, with a RM100 million allocation to implement several strategic initiatives.

* RM50.2 billion for the education sector, with a development allocation of RM1.9 billion for the Education Ministry to be spent on all types of schools.

* RM1 billion to be provided through a special fund for the construction, improvement and maintenance of schools, particularly to cater to their immediate needs.

* Abolition of RM24.50 and RM33.50 for co-curriculum, internal test papers, Malaysian Schools Sports Council fees and insurance premium involving students in primary and secondary schools respectively, beginning the 2012 school year.

* Financial contributions from companies and individuals to upgrade school facilities to be eligible for tax deductions, to encourage more charitable activities.

* Existing National Agrobusiness Terminal (TEMAN) in Wakaf Che Yeh (Kelantan) and Gopeng (Perak) will be developed as Rural Transformation Centres pilot projects, with four more RTCs to be developed in Kedah, Johor, sabah and Sarawak.

* Establishment of Professional Services Fund to encourage professionals such as lawyers, doctors and accountants to set up firms in small towns, with BSN providing RM100 million for soft loans with an interest of 4 per cent.

* RM110 million for the implementation of the Rural Mega Leap Programme covering 6,500 hectares in 11 Agropolitan Projects nationwide for the cultivation of commodity and cash crops as well as cage fish culture.
* RM140 million to implement RISDA's new planting and rubber re-planting programmes benefiting 20,000 smallholders.

* RM5 billion proposed to strengthen the development of rural basic infrastructure in a more comprehensive manner.

* RM500 million to continue implementing projects to upgrade basic infrastructure under "Projek Penyelenggaraan Infrastruktur Awam" and "Projek Infrastruktur Asas", providing opportunities for 29,000 Class F contractors registered with the Contractor Service Sector.

* RM50 million to expand rainwater harvesting programme to Sabah.

* RM400 million to upgrade water supply infrastructure in selected Felda areas, besides RM50 million to connect the reticulation system in estates to the main pipes.

* RM150 million to be provided to the Public Transport Development Fund in the SME Bank to enhance bus services for the rural community.

* RM90 million for the provision of basic necessities which includes expanding the clean water supply project as well as income generating programmes for the Orang Asli community.

* Introduction of the New Civil Service Remuneration Scheme (SBPA) to replace the current scheme.

* Improving the salary of civil servants through a single-tier structure with additional increments to enable civil servants to continue receiving annual increments over a longer period.

* Annual increment of civil servants to be increased between RM80 and RM320 according to their grades, beginning 2012. Those who opt for the SBPA will receive an annual increment of between 7 per cent and 13 per cent.

* With the implementation of SBPA, more than 600,000 government pensioners will benefit from a pension adjustment involving an allocation of RM600 million.

* Effective 2013, the government will implement an annual pension increment of 2 per cent without having to wait for any review of the remuneration system or salary adjustments.

* Extension of compulsory retirement age from 58 to 60 years old to optimise civil servants' contribution.

* Additional bonus of half-month salary with a minimum payment of RM500 for civil servants and an assistance of RM500 for government pensioners, to be paid together with December 2011 salary.

* RM120 million to offer 5,000 Masters and 500 doctoral scholarships for eligible civil servants, including teachers.

* The government will offer 20,000 places for diploma teachers to pursue undergraduate studies.

* A special one-off payment of RM3,000 to 4,300 individuals who have completed their contracts with the Department of Special Affairs (JASA) and Social Development Department (KEMAS).

* RM442 million for the development expenditure of the Royal Malaysia Police, including for police housing quarters, purchase of communication and technical equipment as well as upgrading of headquarters, stations and training centres.

* RM500 million to upgrade and maintain army camps and quarters nationwide under the Army Care programme.

* RM50 million for the introduction of a special programme to enable army personnel who retired with less than 21 years of service and are not eligible for pension, to venture into businesses and obtain jobs in the public and private sectors.

* A one-off payment of RM3,000 to each ex-member as well as widows and widowers of special constable and auxiliary police who served in protecting the country during the emergency era.

* Agriculture sector development allocated RM1.1 billion.

* Expansion of the scope of the Commercial Agriculture Fund to include innovative agriculture projects with an allocation of RM300 million.

* The government to continue providing subsidy to households with electricity bill of RM20 per month or less, benefiting 1 million households.

* Over RM1 billion for the 1Malaysia Rakyat's Welfare Programme (KAR1SMA) to assist, among others, poor senior citizens, poor children, disabled people. 500,000 people to benefit from KAR1SMA.

* Opening of 85 more Kedai Rakyat 1Malaysia with an allocation of RM40 million.

* Expansion of the My First Home Scheme with a proposal to increase the limit of house prices from a maximum of RM220,000 to RM400,000. Improved scheme will be available to housebuyers through joint loans of husband and wife beginning January 2012.

* RM443 million to build 8,000 units for sale and 7,000 units for rental under the Program Perumahan Rakyat (PPR).

* RM63 million to rehabilitate 1,270 abandoned houses. Another RM40 million to restore and maintain public and private low-cost housing.

* Establishment of the Special Housing Fund for Fishermen with an allocation of RM300 million.
* Health Ministry allocated RM15 billion for operating expenditure and RM1.8 billion for developing expenditure.

* Kuala Lumpur Hospital to be upgraded to be the country's premier hospital with an allocation of RM300 million, of which RM50 million to be spent for the construction of a new outpatient block.
* Budget taxi owners to be given 100 per cent excise duty and sales tax exemptions for the purchase of new locally-made taxis.

* Abolition of road tax on all individually owned budget taxis.

* Providing assistance of RM3,000 for the disposal of old taxis exceeding 7 years but less than 10 years, and RM1,000 for vehicles of 10 years and above.

* RM320 million to implement various activities involving young people.

* An additional 150 futsal courts to be built with an allocation of RM15 million to achieve the "One Court for One Mukim" target, as well as another RM50 million to build football fields with artificial turfs, equipped with flood lights, at 30 selected locations nationwide.

* From Jan 1, 2012, all senior citizens aged 60 and above to be exempted from paying outpatient registration fee at all government hospitals, health clinics including 1Malaysia clinics as well as government dental clinics.

They will also be entitled to a 50 per cent discount on LRT and Monorail fares.

* One-off cash assistance of RM500 to households with a monthly income of RM3,000 and below to reflect the government's commitment to reducing the impact of the increasing cost of living on the low-income group. RM1.8 billion allocated for this purpose.

* Schooling assistance of RM100 for all primary and secondary students from Year 1 to Form 5 nationwide, as well book voucher worth RM200 to all Malaysian students in public and private local institutions of higher learning, matriculation and Form 6 students.

* Helping intending haj pilgrims to register early for the haj by ring-fencing RM1,300 from Account 2 of EPF contributors for registration purposes.

Source : Bernama

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Why we disagree ?

Swami Vivekananda - Addresses at The Parliament of Religions - 15 September 1893

I will tell you a little story. You have heard the eloquent speaker who has just finished say, "Let us cease from abusing each other," and he was very sorry that there should be always so much variance.

But I think I should tell you a story which would illustrate the cause of this variance. A frog lived in a well. It had lived there for a long time. It was born there and brought up there, and yet was a little, small frog. Of course the evolutionists were not there then to tell us whether the frog lost its eyes or not, but, for our story's sake, we must take it for granted that it had its eyes, and that it every day cleansed the water of all the worms and bacilli that lived in it with an energy that would do credit to our modern bacteriologists. In this way it went on and became a little sleek and fat. Well, one day another frog that lived in the sea came and fell into the well.

"Where are you from?"

"I am from the sea."

"The sea! How big is that? Is it as big as my well?" and he took a leap from one side of the well to the other.

"My friend," said the frog of the sea, "how do you compare the sea with your little well?”

Then the frog took another leap and asked, "Is your sea so big?"

"What nonsense you speak, to compare the sea with your well!"

"Well, then," said the frog of the well, "nothing can be bigger than my well; there can be nothing bigger than this; this fellow is a liar, so turn him out."

That has been the difficulty all the while.

I am a Hindu. I am sitting in my own little well and thinking that the whole world is my little well. The Christian sits in his little well and thinks the whole world is his well. The Mohammedan sits in his little well and thinks that is the whole world. I have to thank you of America for the great attempt you are making to break down the barriers of this little world of ours, and hope that, in the future, the Lord will help you to accomplish your purpose.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

The Politics of Nonviolent Action - 198 Methods

These methods were compiled by Dr. Gene Sharp and first published in his 1973 book, The Politics of Nonviolent Action, Vol. 2: The Methods of Nonviolent Action. (Boston: Porter Sargent Publishers, 1973). The book outlines each method and gives information about its historical use.

You may also download this list of methods.


Formal Statements

1. Public Speeches
2. Letters of opposition or support
3. Declarations by organizations and institutions
4. Signed public statements
5. Declarations of indictment and intention
6. Group or mass petitions

Communications with a Wider Audience

7. Slogans, caricatures, and symbols
8. Banners, posters, and displayed communications
9. Leaflets, pamphlets, and books
10. Newspapers and journals
11. Records, radio, and television
12. Skywriting and earthwriting

Group Representations

13. Deputations
14. Mock awards
15. Group lobbying
16. Picketing
17. Mock elections

Symbolic Public Acts
18. Displays of flags and symbolic colors
19. Wearing of symbols
20. Prayer and worship
21. Delivering symbolic objects
22. Protest disrobings
23. Destruction of own property
24. Symbolic lights
25. Displays of portraits
26. Paint as protest
27. New signs and names
28. Symbolic sounds
29. Symbolic reclamations
30. Rude gestures

Pressures on Individuals

31. "Haunting" officials
32. Taunting officials
33. Fraternization
34. Vigils

Drama and Music
35. Humorous skits and pranks
36. Performances of plays and music
37. Singing

38. Marches
39. Parades
40. Religious processions
41. Pilgrimages
42. Motorcades

Honoring the Dead

43. Political mourning
44. Mock funerals
45. Demonstrative funerals
46. Homage at burial places

Public Assemblies
47. Assemblies of protest or support
48. Protest meetings
49. Camouflaged meetings of protest
50. Teach-ins

Withdrawal and Renunciation
51. Walk-outs
52. Silence
53. Renouncing honors
54. Turning one's back


Ostracism of Persons
55. Social boycott
56. Selective social boycott
57. Lysistratic nonaction
58. Excommunication
59. Interdict

Noncooperation with Social Events, Customs, and Institutions
60. Suspension of social and sports activities
61. Boycott of social affairs
62. Student strike
63. Social disobedience
64. Withdrawal from social institutions

Withdrawal from the Social System

65. Stay-at-home
66. Total personal noncooperation
67. "Flight" of workers
68. Sanctuary
69. Collective disappearance
70. Protest emigration (hijrat)


Actions by Consumers
71. Consumers' boycott
72. Nonconsumption of boycotted goods
73. Policy of austerity
74. Rent withholding
75. Refusal to rent
76. National consumers' boycott
77. International consumers' boycott

Action by Workers and Producers
78. Workmen's boycott
79. Producers' boycott

Action by Middlemen
80. Suppliers' and handlers' boycott

Action by Owners and Management
81. Traders' boycott
82. Refusal to let or sell property
83. Lockout
84. Refusal of industrial assistance
85. Merchants' "general strike"

Action by Holders of Financial Resources
86. Withdrawal of bank deposits
87. Refusal to pay fees, dues, and assessments
88. Refusal to pay debts or interest
89. Severance of funds and credit
90. Revenue refusal
91. Refusal of a government's money

Action by Governments
92. Domestic embargo
93. Blacklisting of traders
94. International sellers' embargo
95. International buyers' embargo
96. International trade embargo


Symbolic Strikes

97. Protest strike
98. Quickie walkout (lightning strike)

Agricultural Strikes
99. Peasant strike
100. Farm Workers' strike

Strikes by Special Groups
101. Refusal of impressed labor
102. Prisoners' strike
103. Craft strike
104. Professional strike

Ordinary Industrial Strikes

105. Establishment strike
106. Industry strike
107. Sympathetic strike

Restricted Strikes
108. Detailed strike
109. Bumper strike
110. Slowdown strike
111. Working-to-rule strike
112. Reporting "sick" (sick-in)
113. Strike by resignation
114. Limited strike
115. Selective strike

Multi-Industry Strikes
116. Generalized strike
117. General strike

Combination of Strikes and Economic Closures

118. Hartal
119. Economic shutdown


Rejection of Authority
120. Withholding or withdrawal of allegiance
121. Refusal of public support
122. Literature and speeches advocating resistance

Citizens' Noncooperation with Government

123. Boycott of legislative bodies
124. Boycott of elections
125. Boycott of government employment and positions
126. Boycott of government depts., agencies, and other bodies
127. Withdrawal from government educational institutions
128. Boycott of government-supported organizations
129. Refusal of assistance to enforcement agents
130. Removal of own signs and placemarks
131. Refusal to accept appointed officials
132. Refusal to dissolve existing institutions

Citizens' Alternatives to Obedience

133. Reluctant and slow compliance
134. Nonobedience in absence of direct supervision
135. Popular nonobedience
136. Disguised disobedience
137. Refusal of an assemblage or meeting to disperse
138. Sitdown
139. Noncooperation with conscription and deportation
140. Hiding, escape, and false identities
141. Civil disobedience of "illegitimate" laws

Action by Government Personnel
142. Selective refusal of assistance by government aides
143. Blocking of lines of command and information
144. Stalling and obstruction
145. General administrative noncooperation
146. Judicial noncooperation
147. Deliberate inefficiency and selective noncooperation by enforcement agents
148. Mutiny

Domestic Governmental Action
149. Quasi-legal evasions and delays
150. Noncooperation by constituent governmental units

International Governmental Action
151. Changes in diplomatic and other representations
152. Delay and cancellation of diplomatic events
153. Withholding of diplomatic recognition
154. Severance of diplomatic relations
155. Withdrawal from international organizations
156. Refusal of membership in international bodies
157. Expulsion from international organizations


Psychological Intervention
158. Self-exposure to the elements
159. The fast
a) Fast of moral pressure
b) Hunger strike
c) Satyagrahic fast
160. Reverse trial
161. Nonviolent harassment

Physical Intervention

162. Sit-in
163. Stand-in
164. Ride-in
165. Wade-in
166. Mill-in
167. Pray-in
168. Nonviolent raids
169. Nonviolent air raids
170. Nonviolent invasion
171. Nonviolent interjection
172. Nonviolent obstruction
173. Nonviolent occupation

Social Intervention

174. Establishing new social patterns
175. Overloading of facilities
176. Stall-in
177. Speak-in
178. Guerrilla theater
179. Alternative social institutions
180. Alternative communication system

Economic Intervention

181. Reverse strike
182. Stay-in strike
183. Nonviolent land seizure
184. Defiance of blockades
185. Politically motivated counterfeiting
186. Preclusive purchasing
187. Seizure of assets
188. Dumping
189. Selective patronage
190. Alternative markets
191. Alternative transportation systems
192. Alternative economic institutions

Political Intervention

193. Overloading of administrative systems
194. Disclosing identities of secret agents
195. Seeking imprisonment
196. Civil disobedience of "neutral" laws
197. Work-on without collaboration
198. Dual sovereignty and parallel government

Source: Gene Sharp, The Politics of Nonviolent Action, Vol. 2: The Methods of Nonviolent Action (Boston: Porter Sargent Publishers, 1973).

How To Spot A Fascist Regime

Political scientist Dr. Lawrence Britt recently wrote an article about fascism ("Fascism Anyone?," Free Inquiry, Spring 2003, page 20).

Studying the fascist regimes of Hitler (Germany), Mussolini (Italy), Franco (Spain), Suharto (Indonesia), and Pinochet (Chile), Dr. Britt found they all had 14 elements in common.

He calls these the identifying characteristics of fascism. The excerpt is in accordance with the magazine's policy.

The 14 characteristics are:

1. Powerful and Continuing Nationalism

Fascist regimes tend to make constant use of patriotic mottos, slogans, symbols, songs, and other paraphernalia. Flags are seen everywhere, as are flag symbols on clothing and in public displays.

2. Disdain for the Recognition of Human Rights

Because of fear of enemies and the need for security, the people in fascist regimes are persuaded that human rights can be ignored in certain cases because of "need." The people tend to look the other way or even approve of torture, summary executions, assassinations, long incarcerations of prisoners, etc.

3. Identification of Enemies/Scapegoats as a Unifying Cause
The people are rallied into a unifying patriotic frenzy over the need to eliminate a perceived common threat or foe: racial , ethnic or religious minorities; liberals; communists; socialists, terrorists, etc.

4. Supremacy of the Military
Even when there are widespread domestic problems, the military is given a disproportionate amount of government funding, and the domestic agenda is neglected. Soldiers and military service are glamorized.

5. Rampant Sexism
The governments of fascist nations tend to be almost exclusively male-dominated. Under fascist regimes, traditional gender roles are made more rigid. Opposition to abortion is high, as is homophobia and anti-gay legislation and national policy.

6. Controlled Mass Media
Sometimes to media is directly controlled by the government, but in other cases, the media is indirectly controlled by government regulation, or sympathetic media spokespeople and executives. Censorship, especially in war time, is very common.

7. Obsession with National Security
Fear is used as a motivational tool by the government over the masses.

8. Religion and Government are Intertwined
Governments in fascist nations tend to use the most common religion in the nation as a tool to manipulate public opinion. Religious rhetoric and terminology is common from government leaders, even when the major tenets of the religion are diametrically opposed to the government's policies or actions.

9. Corporate Power is Protected
The industrial and business aristocracy of a fascist nation often are the ones who put the government leaders into power, creating a mutually beneficial business/government relationship and power elite.

10. Labor Power is Suppressed

Because the organizing power of labor is the only real threat to a fascist government, labor unions are either eliminated entirely, or are severely suppressed .

11. Disdain for Intellectuals and the Arts

Fascist nations tend to promote and tolerate open hostility to higher education, and academia. It is not uncommon for professors and other academics to be censored or even arrested. Free expression in the arts is openly attacked, and governments often refuse to fund the arts.

12. Obsession with Crime and Punishment

Under fascist regimes, the police are given almost limitless power to enforce laws. The people are often willing to overlook police abuses and even forego civil liberties in the name of patriotism. There is often a national police force with virtually unlimited power in fascist nations.

13. Rampant Cronyism and Corruption
Fascist regimes almost always are governed by groups of friends and associates who appoint each other to government positions and use governmental power and authority to protect their friends from accountability. It is not uncommon in fascist regimes for national resources and even treasures to be appropriated or even outright stolen by government leaders.

14. Fraudulent Elections
Sometimes elections in fascist nations are a complete sham. Other times elections are manipulated by smear campaigns against or even assassination of opposition candidates, use of legislation to control voting numbers or political district boundaries, and manipulation of the media. Fascist nations also typically use their judiciaries to manipulate or control elections.

Copyright © 2003 Free Inquiry magazine
Reprinted for Fair Use Only.

Friday, October 31, 2008

Politicians & Religion

Politicians cynically use the race or religion in order to further their political agendas and to validate the separation of people along ethnic and religious lines. Political and religious con artists are able to get people to associate their religious faith with particular individuals, thus transferring that faith to the individual political or religious leader.

This allows that person to achieve a greater control over others than would otherwise be possible

Through the advent of globalisation and the Internet, various cultures all around the world, including Malaysia, are starting to assimilate each other's values. Malaysians are beginning to consider themselves as citizens of the world, and no longer view themselves as a particular ethnic race.

For that reason, the government is turning its sight to religion as the next powerful tool to control its people. In a land where most of its population is obsessed with symbolism and idolism, religion is a very powerful tool to ignite a crisis between the various groups of people in the country. Thus we see our self-righteous leaders in various states scrambling for the honour to become holier than the leader of the next state.

What should be done about it?

The solution is obvious.Preserving the best of state and religion requires that the two be separated.

Religion and morality should remain as the personal responsibility of an individual. The government should not dictate how a person prays, or practice his or her religion. A government’s duty is just to administer the country to ensure a peaceful and harmonious atmosphere throughout. Only the well-learned religious leaders should handle religious matters.

However, it is sad nowadays to note that there are some dubious religious leaders who also double up as politicians and conversely, there are politicians who also put on religious apparel. These two figures will not allow the rest of us to privately discover the beauty of our own religion. These are the two characters who will always highlight the differences between the various religions but diligently attempt to hide their similarities.

If a society is able to sustain a government that is basically secular, isn't this because there is too little religious action to animate its politics significantly? Put oppositely, when any society's politics become religiously infected, how can its state structures be sufficiently inoculated to resist the virus?

There need be no limits to the free exercise of religion in politics as long as there is a strict prohibition of any religious establishment within the state. Politicians, as politicians, may campaign on - and even vote - their religious consciences; nor is there anything to prevent them from bowing to the bidding of their religious organizations. But state officials and state administrations have a different responsibility. They must remain formally and functionally neutral, and not only in the pluralistic fray between religions but also in the larger struggle between religion, on the one hand, and secularism, on the other. The overall result should be a necessarily contested but vital politics framed by an equitable state that rises above the fray to guarantee fairness to all.

For example, India's recently increasing communal violence reflects the tendency for state leaders and state structures to become embroiled in religious conflicts. As concessions made to one group require concessions made to its rival. Constructing state policy has come to resemble shortening a chair one leg at a time: the results are never quite even, and the seat of power becomes increasingly unstable. The assassinations of both Indira and Rajiv Gandhi offer tragic reminders of the possible consequences.

Meanwhile, over the last ten years or so, if we look at the key sources of violence, vacuity, vulnerability and vitality by examining the present and tending relations between religion, politics, we could find one thing in common. This variety involves the very different relations between religion and politics, on the one hand, and religion and the state, on the other. Few will be surprised to learn that campaigning politicians everywhere tend to invoke local religious themes and symbols as sources of legitimacy what is called "cultural power".

What may be more surprising is the frequent tendency for governmental regimes and their officials to try to keep religion at arm's length. While religion is often an ally in the pursuit of power, once power has been secured, religion can become an unwelcome constraint in the quite different processes of state administration.

Consider the case of Israel. Many Israelis would protest its categorization as a religious state, arguing that Zionism itself can be seen as a secular movement, and that the state makes ample provision for both secular practices and various non-Judaic faiths, especially Islamic and Christian. At the same time, there is no question that the Israeli state is perceived as Jewish by most Jews and non-Jews alike. Even if this were not the case, Zionism itself may be a sufficiently sacred commitment to qualify as religious in its own terms. Certainly there is no question that Israeli politics often take religious forms. This not only applies to the participation of Muslim Palestinians, including the Hamas, but also to the struggles among various Jewish groups - whether secularists on the left or contesting movements on the right, such as the Gush Emunim and the ultra-orthodox Haredi. As Yitzhak Rabin's assassination makes clear, the stakes are large and the rates of violence are correspondingly high.

Where are we heading to? We need to look in to it seriously.


Politicians need not abandon religion

By Barack Obama for USA TODAY

My faith shapes my values, but applying those values to policymaking must be done with principles that are accessible to all people, religious or not. Even so, those who enter the public square are not required to leave their beliefs at the door.

For some time now, there has been talk among pundits and pollsters that the political divide in this country falls sharply along religious lines. Indeed, the single biggest gap in party affiliation among white Americans today is not between men and women, between red states and blue, but between those who attend church regularly and those who don't.

This gap has long been exploited by conservative leaders such as Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson, who tell evangelical Christians that Democrats disrespect their values and dislike their church, while suggesting that religious Americans care only about issues such as abortion and gay marriage.

It's a gap that has also been kept open by some liberals, who might try to avoid the conversation about their religious values altogether, fearful of offending anyone and claiming that constitutional principles tie their hands. Some might even dismiss religion in the public square as inherently irrational or intolerant, thinking that the very word "Christian" describes one's political opponents, not people of faith.

And yet, despite all this division, we are united by the fact that Americans are a deeply religious people. Ninety percent of us believe in God, 70% affiliate ourselves with an organized religion, and 38% call ourselves committed Christians.

This is why, if political leaders truly hope to communicate our hopes and values to Americans in a way that's relevant to their own, we cannot abandon the field of religious discourse.

My lesson

I've fallen into this trap myself. During my 2004 Senate race, my opponent said, "Jesus Christ would not vote for Barack Obama." I answered with what has come to be the typically liberal response: that we live in a pluralistic society, and that I can't impose my religious views on another. I said I was running to be the U.S. senator of Illinois, and not the minister of Illinois.
But my opponent's accusations nagged at me, and I knew that my answer didn't address the role my faith has in guiding my values. I, like other progressives, should have realized that when we ignore what it means to be a good Christian or Muslim or Jew, when we discuss religion only in the negative sense of where or how it should not be practiced, when we shy away from religious venues because we think we'll be unwelcome, others will fill the vacuum: those with the most insular views of faith, or those who cynically use religion to justify partisan ends.

Moreover, it's wrong to ask believers to leave their religion at the door before entering the public square. Abraham Lincoln, William Jennings Bryan, Martin Luther King Jr. — indeed, the majority of great reformers in American history — were not only motivated by faith, they also used religious language to argue for their cause. To say men and women should not inject their "personal morality" into policy debates is a practical absurdity; our law is by definition a codification of morality.

If progressives shed some of these biases, we might recognize the overlapping values that both religious and secular people share when it comes to the direction of our country. We might recognize that the call to sacrifice, the need to think in terms of "thou" and not just "I," resonates with all Americans. And we might realize that we have the ability to reach out to the evangelical community and engage millions of religious Americans in the larger project of America's renewal.
But the conservative leaders of the religious right will need to acknowledge a few truths about religion as well.

For one, the separation of church and state in America has preserved not only our democracy but also the robustness of our religious practice. After all, during our founding, it was not the civil libertarians who were the most effective champions of this separation; it was the persecuted religious minorities concerned that any state-sponsored religion might hinder their ability to practice their faith.

Universal values

This separation is critical to our form of government because in the end, democracy demands that the religiously motivated translate their concerns into universal, rather than religion-specific, values. It requires that their proposals be subject to argument, and amenable to reason. If I am opposed to abortion for religious reasons but seek to pass a law banning the practice, I cannot simply point to the teachings of my church. I have to explain why abortion violates some principle that is accessible to people of all faiths, including those with no faith at all.
This might be difficult for those who believe in the inerrancy of the Bible, but in a pluralistic democracy, we have no choice. Politics involves compromise, the art of the possible. But religion does not allow for compromise. To base one's life on such uncompromising commitments may be sublime; to base our policymaking on them would be dangerous.
In the months and years to come, I am hopeful we can bridge these gaps and overcome the prejudices each of us brings to this debate. I believe that Americans want this. No matter how religious they may or may not be, people are tired of seeing faith used as a tool to attack and divide.

Americans are looking for a deeper, fuller conversation about religion in this country. They might not change their positions on certain issues, but they are willing to listen and learn from those who are willing to speak in reasonable terms — those who know of the central and awesome place that God holds in the lives of so many, and who refuse to treat faith as simply another political issue with which to score points.

Compiled by Vineeth

Friday, May 09, 2008

Diversity-worship won’t cure racism but …

It has now become an accepted principle that the way to cure racism is through the promulgation of racial and ethnic diversity within corporations, universities, government agencies and other institutions including political parties. There are many facets for these diversity movements such as NS training, diversity hiring and admissions, diversity promotions, diversity politics and diversity accommodations etc. (e.g., Indian/Chinese/Malay student organizations and facilities at universities.MIC, MCA, UMNO in politics).

The common feature in all these facets is racial preference.

Why this diversity has brought racial division and conflict instead of promoting racial harmony, if diversity was the cure?

The answer is that you cannot cure racism with racism. Accepting this logic of diversity is same as thinking in racial terms rather than in terms of individual character or merit. Taking jobs away from one group in order to compensate a second group to correct injustices/imbalance caused by a third group who mistreated/sidelined a fourth group at an earlier point in history is absurd on the face of it and does not promote justice. It rather does the opposite. Singling out one group for special favors (e.g., through affirmative action/NEP) breeds justified resentment and fuels the prejudices of real racists.

People are individuals”

Let’s take a fictional example in the field of job as a case study. A corporation named ALIBABA since its creation since 1953 refused to hire an Indian due to a quirky bias on the part of its founder. The founder then dies in 1969 and an enlightened Board of Directors decides that something "positive" needs to be done to compensate for past injustices and announces that, henceforth, Indians will be hired on a preferential basis.

Observe that:

  • This does not help the real victims - the previously excluded Indians.

  • The newly favoured Indians have not been victims of discrimination in hiring, yet unfairly benefit from it.

  • The non-Indians are now excluded from jobs due to the Indians preference.

  • These non-Indians did not cause the previous discrimination and are now unfairly made victims of it.

In the job sphere there are only three essential things an employer needs to know about an individual applicant:

> Does the person have the relevant ability and knowledge (or the capacity to learn readily)?

> Is the person willing to exert the needed effort?

> Does the person have good character? e.g., honesty, integrity

Similar concept is applicable in other sectors including education (which is in greater mess) & politics (which is a mockery now).

The proper solution, of course, is simply to stop discriminating based on irrelevant factors. Although Indian bias ( in the above fictional example) is not a social problem, the principle does not change when you replace hair color with skin color or religion.

Color-blindness & religion-blindness is the traditional and essentially correct solution to the problem of racism & religiosity. But this well-intentioned principle comes at the issue negatively.

The correct principle is individuality awareness…………

People often are making judgments of other people based on non-essential attributes such as skin color, gender, religion, nationality, etc. of course, does happen. At the same time, Individuality Awareness might be too "idealistic" too, But the solution is not to abandon the ideal but to implement it consistently. Thus, government and organizational policies should focus not on diversity-worship but to find way on how to objectively assess or measure the ability, motivation and character in other people.

The proper alternative is to focus on the individual and to treat each individual according to his or her own merits. Malaysians have always encouraged the concept of diversity. ONE of which could easily be reflected in your news papers. (just go through politics till vacancies, could see it everywhere)

When one condemns racism, they should practice what they preach. Malaysians should abhor racism, in any form, for the same reason. (Our parliament itself fails in that)

The belief - that you can cure racism with racial quotas - is a hopeless quest with nothing but increased conflict and injustice at the end. Time has reached where political leaders, educationalists and corporate leaders should find the courage to assert and defend the only true antidote to the problem of racism, which is INDIVIDUALISM. Diversity-worship won’t cure racism but individualism will.

- Vineeth Menon

Sunday, May 04, 2008

“Astrology” - One of the way of fixing the blame and finding solution

Astrology has attracted human-interest since time immemorial. But in modern times astrology is more and more related to religion. Religion and spiritualism has nothing to do with it. Is it a form of job opportunity development?


The astrology basically is related to prediction of future events. The accuracy of these predictions is not validated and no astrologer would ever highlight his failures.

Now by declaring that the future events are already decided, these astrologers cast serious aspersions over the intellect of human beings. The most obvious question is that why a man should possess intellect when whatever he thinks and subsequently does is predestined. It is this possession of intellect that makes humans superior to other animals.

The life of animals may be predestined because of lack of intellect due to limitations of the body but it certainly can't be the case with humans.

Working Principle

Astrologers claim that by knowing the future beforehand, a man can work better and can avoid certain future mishaps or perhaps decrease it's intensity.

The question is that if the future is decided than how can it be modified? The astrologers contradict themselves on this point. It opens the possibility of unscrupulous astrologers taking people for a ride.

Example: An astrologer reads the horoscope of a person and finds out that the person might suffer a loss of RM.100. But he tells his client that he would suffer a loss of RM.500 and if he undertakes certain remedies his loss would be decreased to RM.100.

If in future the loss turns out to be RM.100, then the astrologer would not only take the accolades for correct prediction but also make good money.

We have to appreciate that if future can be changed then it is not predestined

If can't be changed then there is no need for anyone to do any work, since everything will happen on its own.

Religion is not related to Astrology

The most important point, which clearly proves that astrology is just a school of thought, which has no religious sanction, is that none of the spiritual incarnations and other saints has ever mentioned astrology in their sermons,unless proven otherwise.

Leave alone astrology, they have even condemned occult and other psychic powers since they make a man weak and deviate him from the path of God. Perhaps the greatest crime that the astrologers have done to man is that they have made a mess of the greatest teaching of in the Bhagavad-Gita.

Lord Krishna says in Gita, "Your right is to work alone and not to the fruits thereof".

But the astrologers discuss the fruits of the action even before the action has taken place. They first discuss fruits and then suggest actions, which contradicts the celebrated teachings of Lord Krishna.

The man who believes in astrology can never have faith in God and if someone has faith in God he would never believe in astrology and other related fields.”

Swami Vivekananda said, "Astrology and all these mystical things are generally signs of a weak mind; therefore as soon as they are becoming prominent in our minds, we should see a physician, take good food and rest."

And the new entry into the daily life of Malaysians is now numerology.

Its you choice to whom do you believe, either you believe in yourself(your intellect) with faith in god or believe in other forces.

Whom do you believe? GOD or Astrologer

- Vineeth Menon

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Rise above racism towards respect and tolerance in Malaysian society

The media was pushing the idea of “racism” or race-baiting in the election.

Malaysians have shown they are disgusted with racism and race-baiting. Malaysians have moved beyond the race or gender of a person as a hindrance to vote for a candidate, as it should be. Today, we have people of all races positioned every where & supporting each other irrespective of religious affiliation. So, was opposition Racist? I don’t think so.

It is not racist to vote against a candidate because of their politics, views and ideology. Race,Religion & Peace is an excuse used by some, because it does not deserve an explanation. It does not need one.

After the tragic setback, the race based parties like MIC & MCA are trying to reincarnate itself. Should they be allowed to grow again to cause racial disharmony and keep the people divided in the name of Race? These leaders are now finding difficulty to persuade people in terms of race. Isn’t that how it is supposed to be?

This universe has not been created by any extra-cosmic God, nor is it the work of any outside genius. It is self-creating, self-dissolving, self-manifesting, One Infinite Existence. Liberty of thought and action is the only condition of life, of growth and well-being. Where it does not exist, the man, the race, the nation must go.

No individual or nation can live by holding itself apart from the community of others, and wherever such an attempt has been made under false ideas of greatness, policy or holiness-the result has always been disastrous to the secluding one....

Malaysian Society is now at the cross roads of socio-political reformation after 50 years of independence .Our problems are complex because we have willfully accepted a diverse society of all religions, cultures and habits of living. The aspirations of the people are growing with the changing environment. Our society has become more open in recent times because of rapid growth in communication and all round development. It is but natural that this gap in meeting the aspirations is leading to problems of all types including race & religion.

Race & religion is truly a weapon of some nefarious short sighted persons to gain unfair and undue advantage over other fellow citizens. A question, MCA & MIC is raced party or not?

We can overcome the disease of racism by one or more of the following methods.

Racism originates when we ourselves create differences. First, we all must learn to identify ourselves as Malaysians instead of Indian, Chinese etc. “What we do, so we become”. Also has to stop using the words like "preferable chinese speaking" "bumis are encouraged to apply" in the advertisements.No matter what ones explanation for use of these words is, its final result is segregation.

The entire race based political parties like MIC, MCA must be eliminated as they will only help to maintain or increase racist mentality than eliminating it.

Our enlightened religious teachers should come forward to teach that all religions are the means of achieving the same end. When there are no differences in religions, how can differentiation in followers come? Today a large part of racism is linked to religion.

Create societal norms which strictly shun racism of any kind. It should be totally unacceptable at all levels. Unfortunately many of our leaders themselves are falling into a trap to this racism for quick and immediate gains.

Children are the torch bearers of Malaysia’s future. They should be taught in schools and colleges to be humanistic and be tolerant to others views. Every person is free to express his opinion and be a part of the Nation building process. This must be inculcated in the minds of children at a young age so that it blossoms when they grow. Are all our schools doing this?

Our national character must reflect anti -racism of any sort happening anywhere in the world. Unfortunately this is not happening today. We only reflect when anything goes against one religion. Typical example is the reaction to the Dutch movie. Dutch move cannot be justified, at the same time; we are forgetting to condemn similar behavior of other nations and our leaders irrespective of Religion, Color & Creed.Do you think, the move by one supermarket to protest dutch is genuine? According to me,its the similar stunt of BN to cash in on religion to boost their sales further.Just using the opportunity. Let it be.

Media has to take an active roll in propagating Bangsa Malaysia spirit.Any adavertisements which promotes racial segregation in the name of religion or race should be totally avoided.By saying so, this dosent mean that one should not promote ones religion.Its said to avoid segregation in terms of jobs,education and others of similar nature.

I have firm faith that Malaysia with diversity in culture will go through this period successfully.

-Vineeth Menon

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Man – Evolution - Religion

OUT OF WHAT HAS THIS universe been produced then? From a preceding fine universe. Out of what has man been produced? The preceding fine form. Out of what has the tree been produced? Out of the seed; the whole of the tree was there in the seed. It comes out and becomes manifest.

So, the whole of this universe has been created out of this very universe existing in a minute form. It has been made manifest now. It will go back to that minute form, and again will be made manifest. Now we find that the fine forms slowly come out and become grosser and grosser until they reach their limit, and when they reach their limit they go back further and further, becoming finer and finer again. This coming out of the fine and becoming gross, simply changing the arrangements of its parts, as it were, is what in modern times is called evolution.

This is very true, perfectly true; we see it in our lives. No rational man can possibly quarrel with these evolutionists. But we have to learn one thing more. We have to go one step further, and what is that? That every evolution is preceded by an involution. The seed is the father of the tree, but another tree was itself the father of the seed. The seed is the fine form out of which the big tree comes, and another big tree was the form which is involved in that seed. The whole of this universe was present in the cosmic fine universe. The little cell, which becomes afterwards the man, was simply the involved man and becomes evolved as a man. If this is clear, we have no quarrel with the evolutionists, for we see that if they admit this step, instead of their destroying religion, they will be the greatest supporters of it.

We see then, that nothing can be created out of nothing. Everything exists through eternity, and will exist through eternity. Only the movement is in succeeding waves and hollows, going back to fine forms, and coming out into gross manifestations. This involution and evolution is going on throughout the whole of nature. The whole series of evolution, beginning with the lowest manifestation of life and reaching up to the highest, the most perfect man, must have been the involution of something else.

The question is: The involution of what? What was involved? God. The evolutionist will tell you that your idea that it was God is wrong. Why? Because you see God is intelligent, but we find that intelligence develops much later on in the course of evolution. It is in man and the higher animals that we find intelligence, but millions of years have passed in this world before this intelligence came.

This objection of the evolutionists does not hold water, as we shall see by applying our theory. The tree comes out of the seed; goes back to the seed; the beginning and the end are the same. The earth comes out of its cause and returns to it. We know that if we can find the beginning we can find the end. Reverse, if we find the end we can find the beginning. If that is so, take this whole evolutionary series, from the protoplasm at one end to the perfect man at the other, and this whole series is one life. In the end we find the perfect man, so in the beginning it must have been the same. Therefore, the protoplasm was the involution of the highest intelligence. You may not see it but that involved intelligence is what is uncoiling itself until it becomes manifested in the most perfect man.

That can be mathematically demonstrated. If the law of conservation of energy is true, you cannot get anything out of a machine unless you put it in there first. The amount of work that you get out of an engine is exactly the same as you have put into it in the form of water and coal, neither more nor less. The work I am doing now is just what I put into me, in the shape of air, food, and other things. It is only a question of change and manifestation. There cannot be added in the economy of this universe one particle of matter or one foot-pound of force, nor can one particle of matter or one foot-pound of force be taken out.

If that be the case, what is this intelligence? If it was not present in the protoplasm, it must have come all of a sudden, something coming out of nothing, which is absurd. It, therefore, follows absolutely that the perfect man, the free man, the God-man, who has gone beyond the laws of nature and transcended everything, who has no more to go through this process of evolution, through birth and death, that man called the "Christ-man" by the Christians, and the "Buddha-man" by the Buddhists, and the "Free" by the Yogis—that perfect man who is at one end of the chain of evolution—was involved in the cell of the protoplasm, which is at the other end of the same chain.

Applying the same reason to the whole of the universe, we see that intelligence must be the Lord of creation, the cause. What is the most evolved notion that man has of this universe? It is intelligence, the adjustment of part to part, and the display of intelligence, of which the ancient design theory was an attempt at expression. The beginning was, therefore, intelligence. At the beginning that intelligence becomes involved, and in the end that intelligence gets evolved. The sum total of the intelligence displayed in the universe must, therefore, be the involved universal intelligence unfolding itself. This universal intelligence is what we call God.

Call it by any other name, it is absolutely certain that in the beginning there is that Infinite cosmic intelligence. This cosmic intelligence gets involved, and it manifests, evolves itself, until it becomes the perfect man, the "Christ-man," the "Buddha-man." Then it goes back to its own source. That is why all the scriptures say, "In Him we live and move and have our being." That is why all the scriptures preach that we come from God and go back to God. This cosmic intelligence is what the theologians call God.

"Why do you use that old word, God?" Because it is the best word for our purpose; you cannot find a better word than that, because all the hopes, aspirations, and happiness of humanity have been centered in that word. It is impossible now to change the word. Words like these were first coined by great saints who realized their importance and understood their meaning. But in current society, ignorant people take these words, and the result is that they lose their spirit and glory. The word God has been used from time immemorial, and the idea of this cosmic intelligence, and all that is great and holy, is associated with it. Use the old word, only use it in the true spirit, cleanse it of superstition, and realize fully what this great ancient word means.

If you understand the power of the laws of association, you will know that these words are associated with innumerable majestic and powerful ideas; they have been used and worshipped by millions of human souls and associated by them with all that is highest and best, all that is rational, all that is lovable, and all that is great and grand in human nature. And they come as suggestions of these associations and cannot be given up.

We now see that all the various forms of cosmic energy, such as matter, thought, force, intelligence and so forth, are simply the manifestations of that cosmic intelligence, or, as we shall call it henceforth, the Supreme Lord. Everything that you see, feel, or hear, the whole universe, is His creation, or to be a little more accurate, is His projection; or to be still more accurate, is the Lord Himself. It is He who is shining as the sun and the stars, He is the mother earth. He is the ocean Himself. He comes as gentle showers, He is the gentle air that we breathe in, and He it is who is working as force in the body. He is the speech that is uttered; He is the man who is talking. He is the audience that is here. He is the platform on which I stand; He is the light that enables me to see your faces. It is all He. He Himself is both the material and the efficient cause of this universe, and He it is that gets involved in the minute cell, and evolves at the other end and becomes God again. He it is that comes down and becomes the lowest atom, and slowly unfolding His nature, rejoins Himself. This is the mystery of the universe.

"Thou art the man, Thou art the woman, Thou art the strong man walking in the pride of youth, Thou art the old man tottering on crutches, Thou art in everything. Thou art everything, O Lord." This is the only solution of the Cosmos that satisfies the human intellect. In one word, we are born of Him, we live in Him, and unto Him we return.

Read more inThe Cosmos: The Macrocosm - The Complete Works of Swami Vivekananda”

"The whole object of the religion is, by constant struggle, to become perfect, to become divine, to reach God, and see God. . . . Every religion is evolving a God out of the material man, and the same God is the inspirer of all of them." These words were spoken by the great Indian sage Swami Vivekananda to the Parliament of World's Religions in 1893. So striking is the impact of Swami Vivekananda's words

Swami Vivekananda said:

Taking for granted that Darwin is right, I cannot yet admit that it is the final conclusion about the causes of evolution. I am of opinion that the conclusion of the ancient Indian philosophers is the last word on the causes of evolution.

You are certainly aware of the laws of struggle for existence, survival of the fittest, natural selection, and so forth, which have been held by the Western scholars to be the causes of elevating a lower species to a higher." It is not that this is done by the constant struggle against obstacles. In my opinion, struggle and competition sometimes stand in the way of a being's attaining its perfection. If the evolution of an animal is affected by the destruction of a thousand others, then one must confess that this evolution is doing very little good to the world.

The attempt to remove evil from the world by killing a thousand evil-doers only adds to the evil in the world. But if the people can be made to desist from evil-doing by means of spiritual instruction, there is no more evil in the world. Now, see how horrible the Western struggle theory becomes!

-Vineeth Menon

Sunday, December 30, 2007

Religion & Intelligence

What is Religion?

True religions possess two important limbs, namely, its philosophy and its ritualistic injunctions.

Mere ritualism, bereft of philosophy is only superstition,
while bare philosophy without ritualistic practices tantamount to madness.

Both the aspect should go hand in hand. Philosophy reinforces the external practices of rituals and gives them a purpose and goal for realization.Together, they bring out the meaning, significance and purpose of religion.

Philosophy is the theoretical aspect of religion which, with scientific and rational analysis, elucidates the why and where for of life and universe and contains a coherent system of thought for interpreting the reality.

Ritualistic injunctions deal with the practical aspect of the religion and lay down the spiritual practices to be followed for reaching the ultimate goal in life.

Religion, therefore, is a happy and intelligent blending of philosophy and ritualism. If the two aspects are not synchronized properly, there can be no religion. Unfortunately, however, man commits the blunder of projecting one of these two aspects and calls it religion and attributes its decadence and failure to religion as such.

What is different Religions then?

Religions are like so-many paths leading to the same goal, i.e., God. Man reaches his religious goal when he attains his highest moral development. All religions are true. God can be reached by different religions.

It can be explained like this. Many rivers flow by many ways but they fall into the sea and begins at the sea.. All are one in the sea (god). A truly religious man should think that other religions also are paths leading to truth. We should always maintain an attitude of respect towards other religions.

Why do relatives or parents get angry when I say that I want to follow another religion?

The main reason being they are attached to their own religion and they think it is the best in the world. Furthermore, they want you to adhere to their particular manner of thinking, to their group, their race, their class; and ALSO, if you follow another religion you would become a nuisance, a trouble to family.

What happens when you leave one organized religion to other? Have you not merely moved to another prison? As long as mind clings to a belief, it is held in prison. What is important to see is that when you take up another religion you have merely taken on a new set of dogmas in place of the old. You might be little more active, a little more this or that; you are still in the prison of belief and dogma.

So, don’t exchange religion, which is merely a revolt within the prison, but break through prison walls and find out for your self what is god, what is truth. That has meaning. But merely going from one prison to another and quarrel about which prison is better – this is a child game. Only the man who is free of belief can discover that which lies beyond all belief, which is immeasurable.

“”Swami Vivekananda wrote:
If you want to be religious, enter not the gate of any organized religion. They do a hundred times more evil than good, because they stop the growth of each one's individual development. ... Religion is only between you and your God, and no third person must come between you. Think what these organized religions have done! What Napoleon was
more terrible than those religious persecutions? If you and I organize, we begin to hate every person. It is better not to love, if loving only means hating others. That is no love. That is hell! If loving your own people means hating everybody else, it is the quintessence of selfishness and brutality, and the effect is that it will make you brutes.
[The Complete Works of Swami Vivekananda, Volume I,Topic 'The Gita III'] ””

What is True Education & Intelligence?

Intelligence is the capacity to think freely, without fear, without a formula, so that you begin to think for yourself what is real, what is true; but if you are frightened you will never be intelligent. Where there is fear, there is no intelligence. Revolt against everything – against tradition, against organized religion, against the present rotten society. Find out for yourself what is true. Not to imitate but to discover – That is education.

We see the world is caught up in endless wars; it is guided by politicians who are always seeking power; it is a world of ambitious men and women all wanting position and all fighting each other to get it. There are also so-called saints, the religious gurus with their followers; they also want power, position, here or in next life. It is a mad world, completely confused. Everybody is against somebody struggling to arrive at a safe place, a position of power or comfort. The world is torn by conflicting beliefs, by caste and class distinctions, by separate nationalities by every form of stupidity and cruelty.

Don’t take it for granted that this is orderly society. If you see decay, you have a challenge: You are challenged to find a way of solving this urgent problem. And how you respond to the challenge is important.


God is everywhere but he is most manifest in Human. So serve Human as God.

Recomended to view/listen to " I CAN ONLY IMAGINE "

After view/listened to the link above, try to find out, who is the god for whom.

- Vineeth Menon

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Cosmic law – Do the Power Hungry Politicians know about it?

The most important lesson involving human conduct and interaction, from individuals to governments, is seen in the Cosmic Law of Cause & Effect or karma. Knowing how the Law works helps to understand the means to achieve inner and outer peace, and why governments need to be "reconstituted".

The lesson begins with the understanding that the universe is a SEA OF ENERGY that can be either calm or stormy, depending on how it's used.And science has shown how this field of energy works;

For every action, there is equal and opposite reaction."

It's the law, and it was expressed in spiritual teachings long ago;

"Be as wise as serpents and harmless as doves."

A modern addendum is "don't get even, get smart".

Governments have continued from antiquity the practice of initiating physical force to control people, contrary to timeless wisdom;

"You must not propagate lies as a truth to establish righteousness by the power of civil governments or by the inaction of secular laws. You must always labor to PERSUADE human minds .You must never dare to compel them."

For government, the Cosmic Law of Cause & Effect, or karma, means "do unto others as you would have them do unto you". The Cause of Initiating physical force produces in-kind Effects, or karma, at some point in time. It could be IMMEDIATE or in FUTURE.

Every human thought, word and deed is a Cause that sets off a wave of energy throughout the universe, creating calm and desirable, or stormy and undesirable Effects.

Every Cause, whether individual or collectively by government, results in an Effect, from the microcosm to the macrocosm .


In the 1997 edition of his book "Rising Out of Chaos", spiritual leader Simon Peter Fuller emphasized the importance of living in harmony with the Law;

"We are totally responsible for our every thought, word and deed while on Earth, and karma, both positive and negative, ensures that we re-balance all the energy or matter (so called sin) we have ever disturbed."


Deepak Chopra, a leader in mind-body medicine, identified the issue in his 1993 book "The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success";

" debt in the universe ever goes unpaid. There is a perfect accounting system in this universe, and everything is a constant `to and fro' exchange of energy."


It's the Law for all human action in government, business, labor, education, etc., as well as individually.

The Cosmic Law of Cause & Effect requires that governments holding to the karmically-incorrect practice of initiating physical force, or violence of any kind, be RECONSTITUTED with positive principles, policies and practices in harmony with the higher Law, a new way of looking at government.

Being consciously unaware of having caused negative energies that must be re-balanced, humans generally regard themselves as "victims" of some undesirable Effect, but somewhere in the individual or collective history there was a Cause, possibly during past incarnations. This may be better understood by reversing the words of the Law;

"For every Effect, there is a Cause."

There are only Effects of Causes and Causes with Effects.

With regard to government, the bottom line is every thought to be projected in government Principles, every word to be carried out in government Policies, and every deed to be carried out in government Practices, must be assessed for its karmic implications. And this requires an AUTHENTIC CONSTITUTION in harmony with the natural Cosmic Laws of the universe.

This can even be said like this in present circumstances to more than 5 million citizens.
"You didnt use your right to vote - so you suffer" - Also a cosmic Law

- Vineeth Menon

Monday, December 03, 2007

Education and Reservation


Are the politicians misusing the word reservation to serve their power interests?

What educational reservation can do may not be visible now. But it has the potential to ruin the nation. We are living in the 21st century, but we still believe in the race or religion based reservation system.

Looking back, that is 50 years after independence; we have made its mark on the economic front. But when it comes to universities, it is falling behind in the global context. What then plagues it?

The major obstacle has been reservation, which is more an outcome of a political game plan than a genuine compassion to uplift the left-behind populace. It has opened the university doors preferentially for certain races, putting merit on the backburner. It shows the extent to which the corrupt politicians, for whom there is nothing more important than vote, to grab power.

Every citizen is entitled to the best possible basic education. Reservation in that domain therefore might be justified, if the economic criteria have been preferred over race or religion based reservation system.

But the greater area of concern is university education, which is a gateway to the professional world. Race-based reservation is of no use in the changed circumstances. This is even dangerous as it will forever keep the country divided. Reservation will also compromise with the quality of student intake and thus the output.

Let’s think of years from now when the country would need a greater pool of talent performing optimally. We need to change our reservation policies and rectify our past mistakes.

Is reservation a necessity? isn't it embarrassing?

Is Reservation still the need of the hour? How long should it exist? Some people were given a special privilege because it was the need of that hour. In order to bridge the divide, the government or rather the leaders of that era felt the need to implement policies that would give these people some privileges. The aim of these policies was to improve the standard of living of the people who are referred to as Bumiputras.

This race system is man-made and therefore the question of granting privileges does not arise. It is like hurting a man’s dignity and then making up by giving him some privileges. I again say that I am not against reservation, but undue relaxations are not welcomed. Awarding reservation in education is not justified because bumiputras also have the mental capability required to work hard and do well. God bestowed them with equal mental power. It is the politicians and many of us, who made them weak and now in order to rectify our own mistakes, we are committing more.

Financial assistance up to a certain extent is acceptable. If a person is competent enough, no race and no system can stop him/her to achieve success. Success doesn’t come by your race. It is the fruit of your hard work. No organization selects a candidate on the basis of his/her race (In Malaysia may be). I don’t understand why our society is still driven by such race based reservation systems.

Man has reached Mars and still on Earth we treat each other as creatures!
Spiritualism is gaining momentum and still we look down upon others!

Oh God! I sometime wonder, are we moving ahead or going back. We do not respect each other. We are still following the mistakes committed by our forefathers. We sit in a Mercedes S Class but refuse to part with those 100 year old thoughts. Modernization has taken place in the world, but it is yet to reach our minds, our souls.


Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Media - Democracy - Consequences


The current state of the news media is partially to blame for the public’s general lack of information vital for responsible citizenship in a democracy. The news media has become an aspect of show business, offering merely infotainment.

It has evolved into an entity that tends to function as a public relations agency for wealthy and powerful multinational corporations, members of UMNO, the current Prime ministerial Administration including the administrations that preceded it.

The news media is being utilized as a political tool of suppression and propaganda by those in power, and propaganda is psychological in nature. Full of half-truths and utter misinformation, it’s an arrogant and very commercial strategy that is implemented because it appeals to emotions, fear being the main one relentless talk of national security, personal and community safety, can trigger childhood insecurities and indoctrinated views of authority.

Vineeth Menon