Archive for 2010
While I sit here 9.31am on my Labor Day Holiday, I’ve got the DVD in the player and we’re nearly ready to go. I thought I’d write a bit about Fight Club before I proceed to American History X.
To me Edward Norton was always a second-grade actor, never really considered him anywhere near inspiring. However, Fight Club & The Magician seem to be proving me wrong, there is something to his acting that does to a certain extent…inspire. That being said, I feel he still feels boring, although that may be the characters he’s chosen. Bruce Banner was never a really inspiring role to take in The Hulk anyway.
Helena Bonham Carter as well seems to be taking these ‘semi-crazy’ to total ‘whacked-out’ roles to new heights. I’d always remember her as the evil sorcerer from Harry Porter, but she’s also done work for Corpse Bride, Planet of the Apes, Sweeney Todd , Alice in Wonderland, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Terminator and Big Fish. You can tell she’s carved out a nice niche for herself, and actually is kinda hot, in a scary terrifying kinda way.
That being said, the story still falls short. Fight Club ends with an absolute bang, and the story isn’t engaging enough for me. Maybe it’s my preference for real-life stories which fight club certainly is not. I would say the story is a mixture of Old School and Identity. Although it pre-dates both those movies. I was half expecting Will Ferrel to run naked through the movie but that never happened. The ending though, when it all falls into place, is kinda cool and worth the movie. I understand why it’s where it is on the list (No. 16), but I would prefer it go a bit lower. There are far better movies below it.
Now I’m waiting for American History X, which I’m told is a pretty good movie about racism. I love those kinda movies. Alright so we’re on to American History X (no. 38) starring Edward Norton, and let’s see if this guy is all he’s cracked up to be.
That’s my 2 cents. Don’t spend it all in one place.
Malaysian politics is full of posers. People who pretend to know things they don’t, people who claim they can solve your problems, politicians (all of them) think money is an renewable resource something that never stops growing, that we get from an infinite pool that never ends. It isn’t.
I’m fed-up of politics. Fed up of Racist stereotypical bozos running this beautiful country. The government or the opposition, they’re no different than anyone. Would you turn down 100 billion dollars if you saw it? So don’t judge Mahathir, lest you be Judged.
That’s why I’m staying off politics….and moving to movies. The quest for the year is to watch ALL 250 movies on the IMDB top 250. All of them by the end of the year.
If I watched the movie before, I’ll watch it again. Movies connect people and provides for more conversation than the weather, yet we rarely tap into this artistic passion we hold. Everybody has a favorite movie…EVERYBODY. So I’m watching them all, chances are I’ve watched your favorite movie and that gives us something to talk about the next time I see you.
So join me as we move this along.
First Movie of the Quest…FIGHT CLUB.
In one word…GREAT ENDING. Well actually that’s two words. I confessed that I forced myself through the middle, I even posted a short review on Facebook before the movie ended. I was wrong. What started out as a boring loser movie (think Nicholas Cage in Weathermen), turns out to be a fantastic thrill at the end. The last ten minutes, I couldn’t stop it was an excellent ending to an excellent movie.
Another thing you should know about the movie, is that those flashes in the beginning and the end, that you thought were because of a dirty DVD or a bad download, are there on purpose. Take a closer look at this youtube video.. There’s only one word for this, GENIUS.
If you haven’t watch it, you don’t know what you’re missing.
If you’ve watched it… try looking out for those flashes of Brad Pitt or that…
Well let’s just say there really is something at the end.
This is officially the 200th post of my blog.
Although I haven’t posted for nearly 3 months (that’s a whole financial quarter), this blog will still live on. It’s a strange thing about the internet, that as cost of storage hits near-zero my blog (and all it’s quirky contents) will remain forever on record until I intentionally delete it. (or blogger goes bust)
The blog is officially 7 years old, my first post was on April Fools day 2003, and 7 days before my 27th birthday it officially became 7. It’s older than the Ipod Nano (but not the Ipod Classic) and is one of the longest endevaours I’ve ever kept.
7 years is a long time, and just 200 post in that time is a tiny amount any way you slice it. I need to either up my game or give this up. I’m still undecided. Anyway this is to signal to everyone that I’m back and a commitment to this blog is back up and running, and I’ll re-valuate this blog from time to time. My next post will be in before the end of the week.
If the Muslim governments of the Arab states and the secular government of Indonesia (the most populous muslim nation) allow Christians in their countries to call on God as Allah, you have to either accept:
1) Christians cannot call on God as Allah ; the Arab States AND Indonesia have wrongly interpreted Islam – OR
2) Christians can call on God as Allah and there is nothing Theologically wrong with it.
If there is nothing wrong with it Theologically, then why is UMNO making so much noise? Otherwise, what makes you entirely certain that everyone else in every nation got the interpretation of Islam wrong , and only our wise Malaysian government got it right?
Of course, that is where we stand.
Choose where you stand.
The matter of whether Christians can or cannot used the word Allah is not a matter for merely Muslims and Christians.
Considering that the Sikhs have been referring to Allah as God must bode well for religious ties in this country. Of course UMNO and their hate blogs can’t see this oppurtunity, and instead have begun the finger pointing.
The way to end this once and for all, is to have a referendum. A simple referendum that will pose this question to every registered voter in Malaysia:
“Does the government have a right to deny the usage of the word ‘Allah’ to non-Muslims? “
This is not a religious issue, to consider it a matter for Islam, means we’ve already assumed that the word Allah ‘belongs’ to Muslims. It does not belong to anyone, the last time I checked there was no Trademark on Allah. This is a matter for which every strata of society have a say, to make their voice heard.
When churches are being torched, the Hindus , the Buddhist, the Taoist and even Agnostics and Atheist have a say. This is a simple matter of the rights of the minority in a Muslim Majority country.
All the debates can be had and the ceramahs, but at the end of the day, the referendum will prove the final showdown between bigotry and unity.
I’m not afraid. Even though Christians and Sikhs will make up less than 10% of the total vote. I’m not afraid, even though most people who do not bother much about this issue will not vote. I’m not afraid that some Christians view the usage of Allah as theologically unsound and vote YES on the referendum.
I’m not afraid because I strongly believe that the majority of Malays in this country (who by definition are Muslim), feel that the Government has gone overboard. They don’t feel threatened if Christians start using Allah, they are not as Myopic and childish as UMNO to believe that they can somehow claim property of Islam. They respect Islam much more than that.
I believe, that in a Referendum, where everybody gets equal voice no matter how loud you shout, we will finally here the voice of the majority, rather than the insignificant minority of bigots like Mahathir. These bigots hope that by shouting loudly, they can mask the actually feelings of my Malay brothers and sisters.
So let’s have the referendum, let’s see how Barisan does without the Sabah and Sarawak ‘fixed deposits’. Let’s see whether their 49% popular vote in Peninsular will remain or dwindle to nothingness and go missing like Jet Engines.
Let’s see if Najib has the balls to have a Referendum and let’s finish this debacle once and for all.
For all those who claim to speak for the Malays, you should support this move. After all Malays make up more than 60% of the country. All you need is the Malay vote and you’re fine, you don’t even need the non-Malay vote for this. Or are you now questioning your position considering nobody bothered to protest throughout the whole country?
I think Kanna Curry House in Jalan Gasing got more customers for Friday lunch, than this supposedly ‘strong’ protest had protestors. Which basically says, that more Malaysians are concerned about some delicious fish curry then denying Allah to the non-Muslims.
Speaking of protestors: See the yellow placard behing the guy in Blue. It says: “Treat others the way that they wish to be treated” and the guy actually has a clenched fist. Which is good, because I want to be treated as a Malay in this country and get my 7% bumi discount and APs.
But I believe that his real intention was to say “Treat others the way that YOU wish to be treated”, this is the stupidity we’re up against. People who probably can’t speak english and who don’t know the difference between Protestants and Catholic churches. This is the stupidity of people who won’t even proof-read placards that may appear in the Newspaper. You’re telling me we can’t win a referendum against such stupidity.
I believe that Malaysia is at a turning point, the night is darkest just before the dawn, and a dawn is approaching.
UMNO will not last the next General election, that I can guaran-damn-tee. Pack your bags and head for the hills, boys, cause you won’t win anymore elections from here on it. You are nothing more than hate-spewing, divisive, egotistical bigots. You’d better be moving your ill-gotten gains of the country, for when you’re no longer in power…..the law will hunt your ass down.
So whaddaya say about the referendum? You with me.
That’s my 2 cents. Don’t spend it all in one place.
This Allah debacle is getting out of hand.
We now have an entire alliance of bloggers, calling themselves Bloggers against blasphemy. People who supposedly uphold the sanctity of Islam by dividing Christians and Muslims.
I will point out how to respond to this ignorance, but also ask the question of who insults the name of Allah, the Catholics who worship him or the Muslims who draw cartoons around this name?
Here’s how we should respond to this level of Ignorance. Here are the main points these people offer and what you should reply.
1) Why the sudden urge to use “Allah”, it will only create mis-trust.
The East Malaysians have been using Allah for centuries, and even Mahathir has admitted that Christians in East Malaysia have been using Allah since before the inception of Malaysia. The question is why the Government has had a sudden urge in preventing us from using it. The government is the one creating mis-trust.
2) It doesn’t matter if the Arab world use it, you have to look at the context.
Once again, the context is Malaysia, which includes Sabah and Sarawak and the history of Christianity in Sabah and Sarawak that traditionally used Allah to call on God. The context is Malaysia as a whole, not just peninsular Malaysia, not just Sabah and Sarawak. The people in Sabah and Sarawak and Christians and speak Malay, I know it’s hard for UMNO to understand this but there are people in Sabah and Sarawak that can only converse in Malay AND are Christians.
It is their myopia in defining Malaysia as what they see in only Peninsular Malaysia that blinds them from the truth.
3) Allah is the God of the Muslims.
Fair enough, but I worship the God the Abraham. The God of Isaac and Ishmael, the God of Hagar.
I worship the God that appeared to Moses as the burning bush. The God of the Archangel Gabriel who visited Mary at the Annunciation. Who do Muslims worship, isn’t it one and the same?
4) The Catholic understanding of Allah is different from the Muslims.
Fair enough, I believe in the Trinity.
Do Muslims believe in Jesus as the Son of God, who came down from Heaven to redeem my sins? Do they believe he rose from the dead?
Would it be right for me to prevent Muslims from referring to Nabi Isa (pbuh), would it be right for Christians to ask Muslims to remove Nabi Isa from any sacred literature as it would confuse the Christians? No.
The correct thing to do is for Christians to educate Christians about the similarities (and differences) between Christianity and Islam, and to embrace the commonalities. Not drive wedges and divide. Just because your understanding is different doesn’t mean I can deny you usage of the word Jesus (or Isa). More importantly, Christians do not own Jesus, he is for everyone. I would be ashamed of Christians seeking to remove Jesus from Islamic text.
5) Catholics will use this to convert the Muslims.
Confident Muslims are not easily confused. Muslims will not enter a church and think it is a Mosque simply because we use the word Allah.
If a Muslims child ask why do the Christians worship Allah as well, isn’t it a fantastic opportunity for a parent to explain to the child their own faith. It is not a threat to Islam , the usage of Allah is an opportunity for dialogue and understanding.
Why is the topic of conversion such a hot-topic these days. Sure it’s illegal, but are Muslims so insecure in their own faith that they are afraid of people converting them? Surely Muslims in this country that take Pendidikan Islam as a subject all the way to Form 5 are more secure in their beliefs and faith than that…. and if they aren’t, is that the fault of the Christians or the religious authorities?
I can only pity
I can only pity the self-proclaimed moderate Muslims of Demi Negara, Rocky, Lowyar Kampung, Jebat must die and the bloggers against blasphemy. I can only pity them for their blindness and ignorance, for in their ignorance they sow the seeds of hatred among Muslims and Christians, in their blindness and ignorance they fail to see commonalities choosing instead to focus on the uncommon.
Christianity and Islam have much more in common than one might think. If we compare:
1) We both worship a one ever loving and all powerful God.
2) We both believe in the Virgin birth of Jesus (even some Christian denominations do not believe this)
3) We both believe that Marys Son Jesus Ascended into Heaven. (the same Jesus from the Virgin birth)
4) We both believe Moses talked to God at the burning bush (and we both believe the first thing God did was ask him to take of his shoes)
5) We both believe in that Jonah(Yunus) was swallowed by a fish, that John (Yahya) was sent by God to proclaim the coming of Jesus, that David (and his son Solomon) were Kings of Israel and we believe and that there was a great flood in the land of which God saved the righteous Noah(Nuh) by commanding him to build an Ark.
Some Christians churches have chosen to distant themselves from the Virgin Birth, choosing instead to explain the birth of Jesus through Marys rape at the hands of a Roman Soldier. This means that it’s possible that Catholics share more in common with Muslims that with people who consider themselves Christians.
Yet no one talks of this. None of these bloggers against Blasphemy would speak of the commons between us, instead they seek to divide us by focusing on aspects that are different, and prevent fruitful and meaningful conversations between Christians and Muslims.
The similarities do not just end there, we share many other beliefs in common:
1) We believe in a Heaven and a Hell (it’s not as common a belief as you might think)
2) We believe that homosexuality is a sin (many churches do not subscribe to this)
Not just beliefs, but the manner in which we pray:
3) We both have calls to prayer (the Azan and Church Bells) , which annoy and awake others but sound like music to our ears
4) We both have months of fast (Ramadhan and Lent), although I’ve been slacking on Lent these past few years.
5) We both have one day dedicated for prayer as a community (Friday and Sunday), the Jewish people pray on a Saturday (which works out pretty well)
So therefore, when I hear the Azan near my house, at an hour I have barely awoken it annoys me a little. But I take comfort (and PRIDE) in the fact that my Muslim brother is calling out and worshiping the same God I worship, the same God of Abraham. We may differ on many things, but we both believe that there is but one God. And if we both worship one true God then logically we must be worshiping the same God.
If you were to ask me who create the Heavens and the Earth, I would have no qualms proudly proclaiming it was Allah that did so. My brothers and sisters in East Malaysia would say it so instinctively.
I pity the Muslims that feel differently, I pray they may come to accept these things. They are being stirred up by rash, irrational and power hungry politicians who themselves have hired rash, irrational and hate-spewing bloggers push their agenda of division.
Consider this article from Demi Negara, or this one from Small talks. Rocky claims that these are the views of the ‘moderate’ Muslim. They only thing moderate about these guys is their blogs. They are nothing more than hate-spewing divisive articles that forget that Malaysia is a country that INCLUDES Sabah and Sarawak. People who have a right to call their God the same name they’ve been calling him for Centuries.
To insist that Sabahans and Sarawakians change the way they refer to God is similar to insisting that Muslims in other countries refrain from using Allah, or that Muslims should not refer to Jesus unless they refer to him as the Son of God.
The biggest blockers to meaningful dialogue are these guys. They love to divide, they love to play the victim when in fact they oppress ….and continue to oppress. How can we take any of them seriously, when they release articles like this. Who thinks he insults me when he say may Allah bless Augustine Paul? I’m not sure if he’s stupid or just plain ignorant, but let me make it clear. I will have no problems at my funeral for people to say “May Allah bless his soul” or anything to that effect.
Why is it I can’t use Allah to call on God, but these guys can use the word in comedy and satire? Who is insulting the name of Allah now?
This comic taken from this link. It’s the same blogger that’s starting the Bloggers against Blasphemy group. As a Christian I can’t use Allah simply because of my religion, but a Muslim can draw up a comic mocking the the word and get away scot-free?
That’s my 2 cents. Don’t spend it all in one place.
May Allah bless Malaysia.