Sunday, August 30, 2009


The time of the year has arrived again for those red, white, blue, white and yellow pieces of patriotism to flow with the wind off rooftops and cars. Radio stations and television advertisements of black and white images and smiling faces of different races get more airplay time. Newspaper advertisements are getting more creative using food like ice kacang to describe the country.

It is the time of the year again - the time to celebrate.

To celebrate the diversity of our country;
To celebrate the comfortable life most of us live;
To celebrate the growing maturity in the way we critique our people and government.
To celebrate the funny way our people (including ourselves) think.

To celebrate our shortcomings and weaknesses.

We talk about having one dream, to be one nation and to become one people. But without the wisdom to celebrate being one, how do we walk our talk?

To celebrate.

When we celebrate our diversity, we accept that diversity. We accept and come to terms with the fact that it is because of our diversity in the way we think and function that makes us stand out. Despite being different, we still gel because we understand our differences and we learn to give and take, fill in the gaps in between.

When we celebrate the comfortable life most of us live, we learn to appreciate what we have and not waste resources. We learn to look at life optimistically and not take things for granted. We learn to ask less questions and think of solutions to problems. We learn that instead of pointing fingers at others, it may be better to first ask ourselves if it is our own thinking that is the cause of misunderstandings.

When we celebrate the growing maturity in the way we critique our people and government, we learn to stand up for our own rights. We try to put on different hats and try on different shoes. Having different perspectives is gradually becoming an acceptable thing, which means that we are developing a sense of humility.

When we celebrate the funny way our people (including ourselves) think, we are coming to terms with how our people are wired. We may compare our people to those in other countries but hey, we are all different so why bother comparing? We still think the way we do and though we may be able to change some aspects of our thinking, there are some primordial aspects which, not matter how hard you try, will be a part of you till the day you die. So accepting the way we are engineered will make life much happier.

When we celebrate our shortcomings and weaknesses, we realise that our imperfections make us special just the way we are. We nurture and tend to an imperfect garden more than a perfect one, don't we? With that realisation, we look up to greater heights and want to move towards betterment. Now, is that not better than thinking that we are perfect and remain static?

So yes, celebrate for we have lots to.

Selamat Merdeka everyone...

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