Monday, June 21, 2010

Wise words from a wise man

An ounce of action is better than a ton of preaching

It easy to pray for someone in need but most difficult to lift a finger to help him

It is easy to preach to someone but most difficult to practice what we preach

Let's be doers not prayers or preachers

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Happy Father's Day

We just celebrated father’s day last Sunday and this marks the 100th year of the declaration of the day dedicated to honour our fathers. To some it may be an unpleasant reminder of the tyrannous attitude of their fathers who was the cause of turmoil in the family. However to the majority it would have been a day of joyous celebrations to thank their fathers for all that he has done for them.

To those like me,whose fathers may not be around,let's treasure and cherish:

1.E moment he spent with us
2.Every principle he stood for in life
3.Every sacrifice he made to make us what we are today

He may be gone but his memories must continue live in us in everything we do and say.

Those who are fortunate to still have your fathers with you, remember to spend every minute you can spare for him with love and respect. Your children are watching every thing you are doing to him, good or bad. Never say or do anything that you will regret later as that would be too late.

To those father who are hurt and neglected by your children,let's face the challenge with courage and hope.

God will never let us down if we continue to do the right thing with great love and faith.


Friday, June 18, 2010

Father's day 2010 : Obedience is not a sign of weakness but strength

Helping to heal the wounded fathers

On this Father’s Day I would like to share the pain of a father who is going through some difficult times because of the 'wounds' inflicted by his only daughter who had gone against the very principles in life he stood for and hoped his children will follow suit.

He is a very old friend whom I met after a very long time. He is in his sixties and he used to be very cheerful person all his life. I was shocked to see him very depressed and upset now, very different from the person I used to know.

He related his story that has left him depressed and desperate. He has a wonderful and close knit family and everything went on well till a few years ago when his only daughter, whom he loved so much, openly disobeyed him and got married to a man already married with a wife and grown up children.

Overnight a nice and obedient daughter had turned out to a disobedient and rebellious one. He loved the daughter so much and had great hopes that she will become somebody like him one day. But now his hopes are dashed so is his reputation among friends and relatives. His life seemed to have come to a standstill and he has the lost of purpose in life as the most unexpected thing has happened to him. His depression has driven him to lead a withdrawn and reclusive life, avoiding even his close friends and relatives.

This friend of mine is not alone with such a problem. Looking around I realize there are many such 'wounded' fathers in our midst,being troubled by similar problems with their children and are going through hell coping with them. Delinquency, drug addiction, immoral activities and crime are some of these problems. Children who used to be so obedient and concerned overnight turn out to be the nightmares in their lives. Why do they do that and how can we make them realize the wrong they are doing?

Happier times with dad

Life is no more as simple as it used to be when the father’s word was the absolute truth that cannot be challenged by the children. This had its pros and cons but by and large it contributed to the peace and unity in the family as most fathers had the welfare of the family at heart in whatever they do. It was responsible to keep the family unit intact therefore reducing the incidence of family break up due to differences of opinion.

Society today is very much more complex with the tremendous advancements in technology. Today the world is primarily driven by this sophisticated technology, where the role of the elders, especially the elderly father, is becoming increasingly more irrelevant as they are not able to cope with these advancements like the young.

Dad the pillar of strength

We may be highly developed in technology but we must not fail to realize the value of experience that can only be obtained after years of handling the many challenges in life that confronts us. We must not forget that wisdom, forbearance and tact that can only be acquired through years of experience are also equally important in managing the many pressing issues today. Our fathers may not be that technology savvy but their experiences in life are invaluable and we must not be arrogant to ignore them as that would only lead to our downfall.

Absolute obedience should never be encouraged as that may lead to tyranny. Obedience is something not always possible and as children we all disobey our parents at one time or another but it is only fair that we consider their feelings and reasons for their objections whenever we decide to go against their wishes. We should take pains to explain our stand especially when we think they are wrong. As children our obedience to our father should be out of respect for his wide experience that we lack and for all the sacrifices that he had made for our well being. What we are today is very much due his dedicated love and sacrifices that no amount of money, technology or education can buy.

Our father may be outdated in this world of technology but he still relevant as we need his blessings. We can make him happy by consulting him on the major decisions in our lives. We can make him happy by trying not to do what he hates. We can make him happy by correcting our wrongs in life. In short we can make him happy by trying be the same old kids we were to our dads when we were young.

We should not underestimate the value of his blessings in our own lives. History as shown and all religions teach us that people who go ahead to do things that hurt his parents will never find lasting happiness and peace in his own life.

On this Father’s day let us try to heal the wounds of our father caused by our disobedience by mending our wrongful ways. Obedience to our fathers should be seen as a sign of weakness but a sign of respect and faith in them.

Happy Father's Day

Wednesday, June 09, 2010

FIFA World Cup 2010 - South Africa

When will we win the Cup?

The FIFA World Cup - the pride of every nation

The much awaited FIFA World Cup football tournament is finally here and as usual is creating a lot of excitement for football fans all over the world. There is so much write up of the game in the papers and the media that adds to the excitement. Coffee shops, restaurants and even pubs are already preparing for the month-long tournament with huge TV screens and special snacks. Whether we like it or not the World Cup fever is back and is going to get intense over coming days and weeks. It is strange that a game where 22 men chase after a ball has managed to charm the world, which virtually comes to a standstill for a month.

In fact the World Cup finals truly deserves to be called “The greatest show on earth” as it makes people all over the world forget their differences and come together to celebrate this festive month. Locally this will be evident in the huge crowds comprising all races that gather in our nasi kandar and other coffee shops at odd hours all over the country to watch the games. No other national event can ever attract such a spontaneous crowd of all races.

All decked out: A cafe in Gurney Drive, Penang latches on to the World Cup fever by displaying ball-shaped lanterns and banners.(Picture by Star)

The World Cup is just not about just winning or losing but about the expression of one’s passion for his country. We read of the eagerness of the various teams to do their best to win the prestigious cup for their country, which was originally called Victory Cup. We see the pride in the players who are so eager to represent their nation in the games to gain that victory for their fellow citizens. We also see the deep disappointment of those who could not make it because of injuries or left out because of other reasons. Many of these young men, playing for various prestigious football clubs, may be multi-millionaires but their enthusiasm and passion to play for their country puts many of us to shame. Their pride in representing their country illustrates their sense of patriotism to the nation.

Where do we stand in this race to win the FIFA World Cup for our country? What are our hopes of qualifying for a World Cup finals? Countries that were at par with us at one time like Japan and South Korea have already made to the finals long time ago. Even countries that were far behind us like North Korea have made it this time. It will not be surprising that others like Indonesia and India may make it too in the near future. When will we ever make it to the finals?

Don’t we have the same passion to bring glory for our country? We too were almost there during the golden era of Mohktar Dahari, Soh Chin Ann and Santhok Singh. Then there was Arumugam, Hassan Sani James Wong and Chandran but today we are nowhere near to qualifying for the finals. Where did we go wrong?

It is unfortunate that instead of trying hard to improve the standard to qualify for the finals we have become good spectators,businessmen and now even good punters. We have in fact started the national debate on legalizing sports betting which is the least what World Cup is all about. If we have our way we will definitely become a haven for such a game. Why bother to strive to participate in the games when we can make thousands in betting?

It may be timely for us to see why we have deteriorated so much in football. The major reason for this decline is the politicization of the sport that has adversely affected the selection of players. Selection based on criteria that produced great players like Mokhtar,Chin Ann, Santhok ,Arumugam and many others like them should be reintroduced if we want to regain past glory. Selection should be purely on merits and not favoritism of any sorts.

If we look at the nations that have qualified for the World Cup finals in South Africa we will realize some of them are war-torn and ethnically divided. We wonder how these countries can ever manage to qualify. To them the only factor that is paramount is national pride not ethnicity or other political considerations in selecting the players. Every player, regardless of his ethnicity or political affiliations, is given equal opportunity to be selected to represent the country. This is the most important lesson for our leaders in general and FAM in particular; choosing only the best to represent the nation without any prejudice whatsoever.

As we watch enviously, these young men passionately fighting it out on the fields to bring pride to their nations, deep in our hearts there is a profound sense of sadness as we wonder whether we will ever qualify to do the same for our nation. If we want to rise to the ranks of the top nations in football there is a need for all Malaysians to rid themselves of the mindset that divides them along ethnic lines. They must rise above their ethnic and political differences to come together as Malaysians equally eager to contribute to the glory for the nation in not just football but in all that they indulge.

Unless we can do that, which looks rather remote going by present day politics in the country, our dreams for participating in the World Cup will never be realized and we must be contended to being mere spectators,business enterprises and possibly punters.

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