Articles, Opinions & Views: 'Religious sensitivity' has been abused and misused over the years by R Nadeswaran


 
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“When you're left wounded on

Afganistan's plains and

the women come out to cut up what remains,

Just roll to your rifle

and blow out your brains,

And go to your God like a soldier”

“We are not retreating. We are advancing in another direction.”

“It is fatal to enter any war without the will to win it.”

“Old soldiers never die; they just fade away.

“The soldier, above all other people, prays for peace,

for he must suffer and be the deepest wounds and scars of war.”

“May God have mercy upon my enemies, because I won't .”
“The object of war is not to die for your country but to make the other bastard die for his.

“Nobody ever defended anything successfully, there is only attack and attack and attack some more.

“Fixed fortifications are a monument to the stupidity of man."
“It is foolish and wrong to mourn the men who died.
Rather we should thank God that such men lived.

The Soldier stood and faced God


Which must always come to pass

Photobucket
He hoped his shoes were shining

Just as bright as his brass

"Step forward you Soldier,

How shall I deal with you?


Have you always turned the other cheek?


To My Church have you been true?"


"No, Lord, I guess I ain't


Because those of us who carry guns


Can't always be a saint."

I've had to work on Sundays

And at times my talk was tough,

And sometimes I've been violent,

Because the world is awfully rough.

But, I never took a penny

That wasn't mine to keep.

Though I worked a lot of overtime

When the bills got just too steep,

The Soldier squared his shoulders and said

And I never passed a cry for help

Though at times I shook with fear,

And sometimes, God forgive me,

I've wept unmanly tears.

I know I don't deserve a place

Among the people here.

They never wanted me around


Except to calm their fears.


If you've a place for me here,


Lord, It needn't be so grand,


I never expected or had too much,


But if you don't, I'll understand."

There was silence all around the throne

Where the saints had often trod

As the Soldier waited quietly,

For the judgment of his God.

"Step forward now, you Soldier,

You've borne your burden well.

Walk peacefully on Heaven's streets,

You've done your time in Hell."

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'Religious sensitivity' has been abused and misused over the years by R Nadeswaran
Wednesday, April 08, 2020
Elixir of the Gods
Malaysiakini : COMMENT | Over the years, the phrase “religious sensitivity” has been abused and misused by all and sundry – religious leaders, politicians, backboneless civil servants and above all, wannabe politicians and those who seek their five minutes of fame.
There’s nothing that can escape their eyes or ears. Aided and abetted by people within the system, they will go to great lengths to achieve their objectives, which can sometimes be described as birdbrained. Religion, as I view it, is between an individual and his maker. What he does or does not do is a matter for him to answer in the hereafter. Being obnoxious and playing holier than thou is perhaps redemption for many who had diverted from their paths or fallen by the wayside.
It is not for me or anyone to pass judgment on the path he or she has taken or the manner in which religion is evangelised, unless it treads on another faith. But for those who put political existence before principles and ethics, remaining silent or supporting it on the quiet has been the mantra for survival. Three years ago, I wrote: “… the nation is being held to ransom by a handful of zealots. Yet, the government is watching with folded arms and refuses to stand up to this kind of bullying.
“Even the civil service has become subservient to the frolics of the few. All and sundry have got their priorities wrong for political expediency. “At every turn, religion is creeping into our daily lives unabated. Despite espousing moderation, both verbally and in writing, these so-called advocates of temperance and reasonableness retreat into their cocoons when confronted with issues.”
A lot of water has flowed under the bridge since then. The general election two years ago saw the government changing hands – twice. But nothing has changed, except that the religious zealots have become more brazen. The latest furore over allowing the two breweries in the country to operate, albeit on a small scale to meet the demands of the consumer, is a case in point. But yet again, the claim that the hidden hand of the deep state was the cause may have some truth.
The two breweries – Heineken and Carlsberg – would not be that stupid to wave the approval letters and put them in public domain to their detriment. So, from where did the letter, which ended up on social media pages, originate? Now to the core issue: The approval was given by the Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Ministry on March 31 was because the government held that the beer maker was a “food supply operator” and was given partial exemption under the movement control order (MCO).
Yesterday, Defence Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob confirmed that the exemption had been revoked at a special cabinet meeting chaired by the prime minister. “Yesterday (on Sunday), there were many viral messages on social media questioning the operations of brewers Heineken and Carlsberg that received letters allowing their factories to operate.
The International Trade and Industries Ministry will issue immediate revocation letters,” Ismail said. But much earlier, Federal Territories Minister Annuar Musa (photo, below) had let the cat out of the bag via Twitter saying that the approval was not in line with the MCO policy. “It has been cancelled this morning... because this was not in line with the policy of the government,” he said.
It appears that even ministers were competing to make the announcement! What was acceptable with government policies on March 31 became “not okay” a week later. Then again, the exemption letter was given by one ministry and the revocation is to be issued by another ministry – again an indication that all is not hunky-dory in the federal cabinet, with certain parties demanding for their pound of flesh.
But Ismail’s words provide the “real” answers to the revocation because food includes beverages and this includes beer. So, the cabinet had acted on the viral messages on social media. Is this government guided by the law, rules and regulations, principles, logic and common sense – or on viral messages from religious bigots? Is the cabinet aware that both the breweries contribute as much as RM100 million per week in taxes? At a time when money is becoming scarce and when even holy men are looking for handouts, why let this opportunity go?
To the dogmatic, the many diehards and extremists who want to impose their religious values on others, chew this for a change: The Taybeh Brewery in the West Bank produces six kinds of beer for the domestic and foreign markets: golden, light, dark, amber, white and alcohol-free.
Its owner, Nadim Khoury sees Taybeh’s beer as a small contribution to coexistence. It brings together Israelis and Palestinians – Christians, Jews and Muslims – alike. And he has a message for the naysayers: “The people take every opportunity to find a distraction. With or without alcohol, a bottle of beer lets people relax and forget about politics for a while.”
Need more be said?
posted by Major D Swami (Retired) @ 12:21 PM  
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