Friday, December 25, 2009
Saturday, December 12, 2009
With the translucent-seductive-well-played-manner of the music that jingles through our ears, "Jingle Bells" seems to suggest a carefree, fun and joyful life one should take. Almost the same as Timon & Pumbaa's "Hakuna Matata" in The Lion King.
However, joke aside, LIFE isn't a BELL after all. No matter how much you tried, it'll ceased to jingle. Too much a force, your bell may be broken into pieces and likewise, too low a force exerted, it's voice dampen. That's the reality of our so-called "bells".
It is quite alarming to hear that most people considered richness, health, dreams etc. to be their greatest gifts of all and worse still, quite a number mentioned about money, power, lust, drugs, sex etc. Well honestly, I don't have the authority to pass judgments for at the end of the day, it is all our choices. Both of us may be right or wrong.
But, don't you think it's quite straight-forward notwithstanding to consider life itself to begin with? Something is missing and that is indeed the greatest of all. Our "bells!" Yep, LIFE itself. Can't you see peps, should you not being born, would you be who you are right now? Will richness, love, family, money, sex etc. come had you not coming to this world first? Perhaps, they may be counted in the other realm but as for now, I'm pretty sure that to be able to have the opportunity to live life as it is, I'm truly grateful!
Since it is Christmas, I would earnestly remind both you and myself about how Christ had jingled his "bell" very well that it surely was, is still and forever echoes till eternity. You see, He didn't need neither The Big Ben in London nor The Big Clock Tower of Notre Dame in Paris to do so, He simply jingled his, and the chimes follows endlessly.
Hence, it is not where was the last time your bell jingled but when? Me? There's a whole lot of walk-the-talk grabbing and renewal of hope in my window of soul lately - and that's when I know my jingle bells are coming in right all the way as 2010 approaches!
Till the next postings.
Friday, December 4, 2009
As we struts and frets along side the roads, almost everywhere the very essence of the season's gestures can be felt whether you are in the midst of a bustling 'pasar malam' street or inside the biggest supermarket itself. Everyone, everywhere seems to be in merry-making.
However, let us also be reminded that far beyond these, there are more to be felt and seen. Whilst celebration and joy are good, let us at the same time not to forget on to count our blessings, thanking the almighty creator for everything. Yes, everything! And that only cause you a simple "THANK YOU"
Some may say, since everything is countless, why bother counting? In that case, take a look at these:
1. If you have food in the refrigerator, clothes on your back, a roof overhead and a place to sleep you are richer than 75% of this world. "If you have money in the bank, in your wallet, and spare change in a dish, you are among the top 8% of the world's wealthy.
2. If you woke up this morning with more health than illness....you are more blessed than the many who will not even survive today.
3. If you never experienced the fear in battle, the loneliness of imprisonment, the agony of torture or the pangs of starvation... you are ahead of the other 700 million people in the world.
4. If you can attend a place for worship without the fear of harassment and arrest, you are far more blessed and envied by 3 billion people who never know who God is.
5. If your parents are still alive and married.... consider yourself to be rare because out of 10 marriages, 8 of them come to no avail.
6. If you can hold your head up and smile, you are not the norm! Why? Because you are unique to those who thirst for happiness and in state of sorrow and despair.
So, what now?
If you have read this message, consider yourself lucky! For you just received double blessing as someone is caring enough to think of you as very special and you are more blessed than over 2 billion people who can't read at all!
Have a good day and don't forget to count your blessings. Till the next postings.
Friday, November 20, 2009
However, does the end justifies the means? What is the real purpose of asking for somebody's well-being at the first place knowing that you cannot do anything about it? Ya, I know, most of us named it courtesy but what's the big deal of being courteous if one is lacking of sincerity? Is that how our real society work? So, what's the purpose of learning civic lessons in school remembering all the 80+ moral values (I don't know the exact amount because I don't wish to remember them for the sake of passing the paper - that's why I only managed to get an A2 for Moral subject during SPM, I guess)
Anyway, back to business, for instance, people used to ask, "Hi Tom, how do you do today? Or the least "What's up Clark?" To you whom the question is directed, of course, it sounds comforting but to the people who are asking for the sake of courtesy, that question just now is yet another rotten smirk conjured just for you to see.
Believe it or not, almost every time, the answer to such questions will be either "Fine, thank you" or "I'm great!" If you are skeptical, make it a try. You'll be surprised with random people giving almost the same answers! And how is that possible? Again, it's because of courtesy!
No matter what's your ordeal is at that moment - whether you are at the brink of an abyss facing the greatest emotional breakdown situation of your life or stranded in an agony of sorrow, still your answer is going to be "I'm okay!" Why? Again, courtesy!
So, the question is, since it is public courtesy and you realize no matter what the situation is, you always know the answer it is going to be, why ask? That's the different between being courteous and showing sincerity.
Phrases like "How do you do?" and "Are you okay?" can be good and bad at the same time. Good in a way that people is being comforted in a short period of time of course, but at the same time it is also a bad thing to ask depending on your state of sincerity. Will you ever help to the extend of beyond your horizon?
In any given evening, have you ever stumbled upon a scene whereby you are to ask an old folk about what he is doing, knowing that he is indeed virtually doing the gardening in front of you! What if he/she answered "Can't you tell, I'm doing the gardening of course, so, will you lend me a hand?" How will you answer to that?
Or, say one of your friend suddenly answered "I'm not okay right now, I'm fall short of pennies, will you borrow me some?" How much is "some"? or will you help if that someone is a complete stranger?
I agree some may argued that, at least somebody is caring enough to ask compared to someone who keeps his/her mouth shut at all denoting his/her lack of interest. Some may say, it all depends on the other parties trustworthiness. Of course you'll never lend money to strangers.
Absurd as it maybe, I still hold on to the notion that keeping our mouths shut somehow is favorable rather than playing with people's sentiment depending on to the situations as the saying goes silence is golden rather than busy but clumsy!
Watch out your courtesy folks. Till the next posting.
Wednesday, November 11, 2009
Stories of child prodigies are no shocking incidents at all. Even before this, Malaysia (partly because her mum is a Malaysian) was blessed to have a brilliant child named Sufiah Yusof who once entered St. Hilda's College, Oxford Univ. at the age of 13 due to her deep fascination in Mathematics.
Apart from that, there are also stories of other genius kids all around the world such as:
1. Arkit Jaswal, who read Shakespeare at the age of 5 while performing a surgery at the age of 7 and became India's youngest undergrad student to attend Punjab Univ. by 11 years old.
2. Song yoo-Geun, who performed Schrodinger equation and enrolled at Inha Univ. Korea by the age of 8!
3. Mohammad Hossein Tabatabai, who is able to recite and interpret the entire Koran at the age of 7!
4. Or consider Tiger Woods who began to play golf at the age of 2!
5. And of course, the now higly-praised teen star Miley Cyrus who in 2008, was listed in Time magazine's 100 Most Influential People in The World. Forbes magazine ranked her 35 on the "Celebrity 100" list with earnings of $25 million.
While there maybe child prodigies around, let us also be reminded of those children who are less fortunate, underfed, massacred and side-lined in some other places due to terrorism, war disputes, famine and other disasters alike.
Most of us may be dragged into a conclusion that, we are less fortunate, less smart and exceptionally ordinary compared to these prodigies but remember, there's bottom millions worse.
You see, there are people who enslaved themselves dedicating ripe old 30 years of age working as a bread-winner for the family, yet in the end, dying in debts on hands while others (celebrity such as Miley Cyrus) simply hit their millions before the age of 20! Come to think of it, life seems to be unfair, don't you agree?
This brings us into seductive deductions of:
Premise 1: Miley Cyrus is rich.
Premise 2: To be rich is successful.
Conclusion: Should we become like Miley Cyrus?
Premise 3: Adi Putra is a genius.
Premise 4: Being genius is successful.
Conclusion: Should we become like Adi Putra?
I may not know what you folks there are thinking but to me, no matter what is the definition of success is, I'm still me! I guess, you should be YOU too. As for me, when I was 10, the only thing I can recall is the part when I was gallantly enjoying my vanilla ice-cream watching the then infamous cartoon Scooby-Doo.
Master Oogway in Kung Fu Panda summarized it all when he said "Yesterday was history, tomorrow's a mystery but today's a GIFT! That's why it's called the PRESENT!"
Since we cannot change nor reverse the past and that somehow we can influence the future, the greater question that needs crucial attention is "what will you become 10 years from now?" And that starts with YOU, NOW!
Till the next posting.
Tuesday, November 3, 2009
1. Enough said with the rankling THES-QS rankings, the recent view pose by USM's VC, Prof. Dzulkifli explains it all. I certainly amused with his argument stating that - ranking is nothing but a herd mentality takeover! Constituted of course, by geezers who had not come to their senses (at least, not for now) to figure out that old ways of ranking universities are obsolete and do not mean much for the readily extreme complicated world now we are living in. But, guess who's the one creating those mess if it's not per say, old-timer geeks from "world class" universities? If you catch my drift.
People pridely wishing to be champions of the world. Gearing up tiredlessly to meet standards in order to be ranked "world class" becomes their outermost priority. But look, few ever stumbled upon themselves asking this very important question, "whose world" or 'which world" are we talking about?
While there maybe hundreds of Nobel Laureates produced every year by this so-called celebrated "world class" universities, how much did it means to the bottom billions of the WORLD? I shall say that if you happened to be on the bustling street of New York with a penny under your sleeve, consider yourself lucky because on the other side of the real WORLD, someone might be starving to death in Kibera Slum of Kenya in Nairobi! Or, while Shah Rukh Khan may even 'own' lands on The Moon (report), thousands of people fall short of enough ration and homeless in India! This is the type of the real WORLD we are in. Unless this prevailing truth being comprehended dearly, I must say our understanding of the WORLD is seemingly limited. When I was a kid, I used to sing a song entitled "It's a small world" in Sunday School. Come to think of it, our world is the same the way it should be, the only thing which is shrinking and getting smaller is I doubt, our understanding on it!
2. Also, there was this story of an unfortunate 18 years old girl of Iban and Chinese parentage named Marina Undau from Sri Aman Division, Sarawak. Her story gained national attention when her application and appeal to enroll into one of the Malaysian matriculation colleges was apparently rejected by the Ministry of Education due to her being in non-Bumiputera (non-native) status. Click here for the news. Sincerely, in an any given day basis, termination of any application is normal - it's part and parcel of life - however, the reason given by the ministry has invoked a state of chaos on the land. The reason of the dismissal was that “the candidate is categorize as non-Bumiputera (father is Iban and mother is Chinese)” based on a definition used by the Student Intake Management Division, Higher Learning Department and Higher Education Ministry.
Their definition is as follows:
Sarawak – “Jika bapa dan ibu adalah seorang Peribumi Sarawak seperti mana yang ditakrifkan dalam Perkara 161A(6)(b) Perlembagaan persekutuan; maka anaknya adalah dianggap seorang Bumiputera.” (If the father and mother is a native of Sarawak as defined under Article 161A(6)(b) of the Federal Constitution, the child is considered a Bumiputera).
So, that is her case. She's being turned down because she is not a Bumiputera. To be frank, in the first place, the idea of being Bumis or vice versa should not arise. There's not need to be a Bumi when you are already a Malaysian. 1Malaysia concept, remember? Worse still, how can one ever permit a promised future of a girl scoring 9As in her SPM slipped away just because of silly wordings on a piece of paper? Enough already with the whole confusions, isn't it time to move forward?
Looking into this issue, I will not take it personally (though I'm an Iban myself) like others who blurted out passing judgments blinkered by emotions. Of course people can burst out and press on their feelings and complaining but don't we aware that, our whining actually complicates things more? In a democratic country, The Constitution is the supreme law and once a law is constituted, it shall be abided unless a motion is tabled in the parliment to amend the law with 2/3 majority support from all the parliment members. That's the truth. Can it be changed? Certainly!
The way I see it, in order to avoid such disgrace again in future, someone should stand up and this started with our YBs (representatives in the parliment) involvement to table up a motion to amend the law, but in time like this, when the plight of the people is at stake, where did our so-called YBs go? Sadly, most of them are cowering under the table, snuggling in comfort. Not only that, from my observations, many of our YB's married to non-Bumis, but still, the sons and daughters getting scholarships and were even sent to study overseas. How do you explain that? What a waste of my grandma's vote! If this is the case, then, I shall not voting. But, one thing for sure, given the opportunity, I'm still in favor of mix-parentage family come what may. So, bye Bumi status. I'm a Malaysian anyway.
I believed one's eligibility is not measured by one's status but his/her capability - regardless whether you are the son of a king or a farmer's daughter, should you excel in studies, scholarships and rewards are yours! No such things as double standards and as* licking here man, if you want it, prove it!
3. Recently, a video of some incorrigible young brats is circulating in the Youtube! What's the odd of a bunch of kids making video anyway? (news) Surely, it's nothing. Simple move here and there with a little bit of shuffle dance. That's all. But what triggers strain was their behavior of insolently mimicking 'solat' ritual in a church! That is completely wrong though you are a kid! Being pranksters do not mean that one can scrutinize others' beliefs. There's always a limit to anything let alone serious matter as far as religion. To my Muslim friends, I am deeply sorry for this irresponsible deed. Sometimes, some people just hate to look before leap.
This becomes my concern since that particular church of which this disgusting video was taken is my hometown church back in Betong, Sarawak - the one that used to be my sitting pew every Sunday without missed for more than 12 years because after that, I continued my study in other places. At first, I was struck to hear such news (bad news) about something that holds back countless sweet memories - of course not with the beautiful choir girls on the music chamber nor being an altar boy on the tabernacle - but of a place which you spent almost every bits of your childhood.
It still fresh in my mind, the day I was gonna recite my first prayer in front of other kids at the age of 5, the merry-making scenario during Sunday School. Not to mention Ms. Helena with her ever tender voice asking us to stay put (You know kids...) and my parents parenting on the pew style of bringing - whenever in church, you should sit in front!
I remember when there was a time when my friends Ching Ching (Buddhist), Zul (Muslim) and I were playing hide and seek just in the vicinity of the church area, yet nothing ridiculous happened, though all of us were grounded the next day as a result of Ching Ching accidentally broke some tombstone by the edge but that's all. No big deal because everyone knows their limits and holding on to respect each other. That's how it was back then. The issue of mocking each others belief and way of life is out of question! Guess nowadays kids are getting twisted by too much exposure to mass media etc.
Above all, I believed not a single religion in this world teaches their practitioners to be disrespectful towards others. It's the same goes to either Jesus or Mohammad nor Buddha and Krishna. All religions are good as they always are. The only thing less good is us, human. That's why things like these occurred. And you blame it on to religion, law and the world? Common peps, wake up!
Till the next posting.
Monday, October 26, 2009
A teacher asks her class, "If there are 5 birds sitting on a fence and you shoot one of them, how many will be left?" She calls on little Johnny.
"None, they all fly away with the first gunshot provided that the shot missed." The teacher replies, "The correct answer is 4, but I like your thinking."
Then Little Johnny says, "I have a question for YOU. There are 3 women sitting on a bench having ice cream. One is delicately licking the sides of the triple scoop of ice cream. The second is gobbling down the top and sucking the cone. The third is biting off the top of the ice cream. Which one is married?"
The teacher, blushing a great deal, replies, "Well I suppose the one that's gobbled down the top and sucked the cone."
Of which Little Johnny replies, "The correct answer is the one with the wedding ring on!!... but I like your thinking."
Ya, we may be cracking out loud because indeed it is funny but hey, don't you mind counting how many of us really think like the way Lil Johnny did? Unprecedentedly, almost a little, just as little as Lil. Johnny is. Most likely, the rest befalls in the teacher's category. Of course I'm not suggesting all teachers to be liken like that (though some might be).
Thing is we, the rakyat feels that our leaders (very certain individual) are less critical compared to Lil. Johnny, let alone surpassing his way of thinking. This can be observed in the current debated hot-cupcake issues i.e. the teaching of sex education in school, banning of condoms and the postponement (or should I say canceled?) Beyonce's concert in town, complete the list.
Before going on further, let me just briefly remind all that unless we are ready to open up that narrow mind of ours and be contemporarily suave with sex issue, please, by all means, stop reading. There's no purpose of continuing if at the end of the day, what we got are just cornflakes, believing that all this while we are chasing after a rainbow.
Anyway, regarding sex issue, the problem lies not in the issue, it simply lies in the word "sex" itself because somehow in our country, the word "sex" suggests a negative connotation, coined by some insolent brutes craving for sheer pleasure neglecting the honor of it rampaging innocent lives as little as a 9 years old Nurin! Common peps, can't you think or at least be struck with owe, for Devil's damn sake, what do you expect from a 9 years old kid anyway? Fun? The next Alpha Lion? Go get some hookers!
These sort of happenings made us to believe that there's no more room left for goodness in sex. Imagine, everyday, the young ones are being bombarded by the news from the newspapers (especially Kosmo, which to me is more or less a rack worthy to be used as washroom utensil, which printed every single page with none other than stories involving sexual harassment - A step-father raping a daughter, a grandma molesting a grandson etc. The list continues, you name it). I don't know whether the readers are aware or vice versa, but can't you tell that's part of strategy in biz?
Again, one thing for sure, when it comes to sex issue, almost it is a taboo. It will be the last thing on Earth you discuss about with your parents. Can we not see where is this going to bring us? Say a pure innocent child filled with curiosity and enthusiasm wanted to know about sex, who do you think the most suitable of person should he/she look up to? Friends? Maybe, if the friends are really FRIENDS, what if these friends were to be misleading? Obviously, say bye to virginity.
At last, the best resource a person can have is none other than their parents. Fullstop! This starts with a more open disclosure of a pure and good side of sexual relationship to the kids. Though awkard, but everything has it first right? For instance, you can never straight away walking upon birth, firstly, you need to crawl and so on so forth. That's life. So, the real big question mark is how can the good side of sex prevails if at the first place our society declined to acknowledge it? Unless we're sincere to set aside sex taboo in our lives, voila, we are forever be Sleeping Beauty readily prepared for our neck to be chopped.
On the other hands, for both banning of condoms and Beyonce's cases, I believe some people need their lens to be cleaned because they fail to see the thing in a big picture. How can these people ensure that social problems involving sexual harassment can be stopped just by setting up slogan (should I say politically-moved propaganda) banning the use of condoms? Some of these religious individuals argue that the use of condoms signal a green light to various sexual issues in the country. Freak as they were, aren't they blind or something? Can they not see, with or without the use of condoms, sexual harassment, pre-marital sex, rape etc. still happen drastically - check for yourself in your so-called Kosmo!
So, to abandon the use of condoms, which is somehow believed to reduce the possibility of pregnancy and Sexually Transmitted Disease (STD), aren't they are the one promoting sexual problems in a long run?
In the case of Beyonce, I guess, she's the one who should be questioning the sceptics about rules and regulations of this country. I suggest B should begin with the question of why an artist of no calibre such that of Faizal Tahir (anonimous in world stage) behave like an underage monkey on stage while performing in front of thousands of crowd and yet, no actions were taken on him? Yes they are rumors that he was penalized but is it true? No one mention anything.
Next, when a local indie band performed in a peculiar manner understood only by their fans in Dataran Merdeka every year, did anybody say anything? Again, none. To make things more interesting, when the westerners bluntly condemned this country back in 1990's for human rights scrutiny and muzzled every single piece of Malaysia's voice internationally, where did the pessimists go? Care to explain for yourself?
I'm far from biased here because to tell you the truth, I'm not a fan of Beyonce whatsoever. I only questioned why did some people refused to see things logically amidst the fact that even a multi-million diva like B is willing to abide with the local dressing code in her performance, so, what's the fuss? Sometimes, we just don't get it, when a diva cared enough to tolerate, why on Earth should a 'no body' dare to postpone and make things complicated? Truly intriguing human is.
At this rate, people must be made understand that sex, condoms and Beyonce are not the core problems, the main problem is our certain leaders are still of that the Lil. Johnny's thinking. They refused to acknowledge the big issues and continue on around playing with the rakyat's sentiments to gain support and popularity - mind you, the rakyat is not that easy to be swayed! At least not in As I See It.
Little Johnny in the Kirk,
make our leaders think at least,
the way you smirk!
Till the next posting.
Sunday, October 25, 2009
Last Friday, October 23th, 2009, The August House was once again in clamour upon the presentation of the 2010 Budget delivered by the PM. In particular, the budget seems unfriendly since it indirectly involved the rakyat the like of which the previous budgets had done before - no bonus for civil servants, no dramatic decrease hike in consumers' daily needs such as in goods, supplies etc. Click here and here for news coverage.
However, in a bigger picture, the 2010 budget which is proposed to be allocated around RM191.5 billion, 11.2% lower than 2009 Budget estimated RM215.7 billion should be considered timely. Why? Simply because the year 2010 is still in blurry and 2009 has thought us a lot. Here for full speech of 2010 Budget.
What happened in 2009? The Malaysian economy is an open economy leading it to be vulnerable to external trade and international capital flows. Hence, as result of the global financial crisis alone, Malaysia's exports fell sharply at 23.4% in the first quarter of 2009. Similarly, the Industrial Production Index (IPI) declined at a rate of 12.7% coupled with an amount of RM3.6 billion decreased in Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) the same year (source: 2009 Economic Report). These alone remarkably made us in shambles.
Though the International Monetary Fund (IMF) projected that the economy is going to expand by 3% in 2010, pre-emptive measures should always be at hands to minimize further repercussions in the country.
As the PM mentioned in his speech, the budget is seen to be of a value-for-money budget. It is meant to cut down wastage in terms of expenditure and creditworthiness to control inflation and enhance overall revenue. By doing so, the government wishes to strictly decreases fiscal deficit which is projected to be 5.6% GDP compare to 7.4% in 2009.
The people must know that their purchasing power and value of money depreciates with time when inflation comes into picture. The RM1 today is nothing compared to the RM1 our forefathers used to spent 40-50 years ago. My grandpa used to tell me that during his time, a bowl of 'kolo mee' - Sarawak special made noodle - only cost him 20cents. Meaning, having RM1 in hand at that particular time already made him popular among the ladies! Nowadays, things change and the change is inevitable. RM1 is just a cup of 'air sirap' costing you, say 80cents. Like it or not, that's how it works and it will continue to work the way it is.
The scope of this article intends to view only the educational part of the budget dealing especially with higher education learning answering questions like why is this budget important to us (graduates/students)? Why should we bother and what can be done of it?
So, what is there in 2010 Budget for students? Generally, I would say nothing much but at least they are i.e. the government promised 30 of the country’s creme de la creme students to be awarded National Scholarships strictly based on merit, which will allow them to further education in world-renowned universities commencing next year. The universities are also granted own autonomy in certain areas pertaining to R&D in accordance with the emphasis to better competency.
Also, those who get National Higher Education Fund Corporation (PTPTN) loans will also see the loans being converted to scholarships beginning next year — if they graduate with first class honours! Buckle up guys! In addition, all university students will be offered a netbook package of RM50 per month for two years, including free broadband service. Here for the news.
As you can see, the economy bothers us a lot especially to those who are going to graduate next year in 2010. Unless we are aware of the situation around us, we'll be forever left behind lacking in one of the best thing you & I wished to have more than anybody else: money.
Many think that economy matters only for the economists, however, I believe that the time has come for everyone to at least has the knowledge about money. The sooner you realized this, the lesser the opportunity of you folks being deceived straight down under your nose!
Till the next posting.
Tuesday, October 20, 2009
Historically, 31st August every year is to commemorate the independence day of the federation of Malaya in 1957 not Malaysia. Malaysia existed only when the federation of Malaya, Singapore, Sabah and Sarawak agreed to become one entity in September 16th, 1963. Hence, in an appropriate manner, the true call of freedom for Malaysia should befall on the latter's date.
Whether the recent decision made by the government is seen to be a discourse of sincerity or politically moved, either way, is out of the question. The truth that September 16th deserves public holiday and being realized is more important so that the future generations know well their very own forte. What more can a citizen asked for, if it is not the sheer truth of his/her country?
Till the next posting.
Thursday, October 8, 2009
So, in which ranks do the Malaysian universities belongs to? let's see...
Among the public universities, only UM made it to top 200 this year leaving UKM, USM - our so called APEX univ - UTM & UPM behind. Surprised? Frankly, I am not. It's somehow predictable. Why? Before further passing judgments, let's just peep into what are the criteria of the survey based on to.
QS managing director Nunzio Quacquarelli said the rankings identified not just the most highly-ranked universities in the world, but also the best performing universities in key subject areas, the universities most targeted by employers, those producing the best research, those investing in teaching and those with the most international profile. Click here for news.
I believe with this revelation, USM's credibility as an APEX univ. will be questioned. People will of course, start to compare as natural as it should be. One of the most predicted cynicism must be: what happened to USM ranking? Isn't it's the national APEX univ - huge amount of government money had been invested upon it plus it even has free autonomy to filter own selection, so, how on earth can it be outran by non APEX univ. in this matter?
I'm not against rankings. It's something good to remind us all on reality. My only query is that, is this survey/ranking really laid on tangible ground i.e. what kind of key subject areas are we looking at? which types of employers are we referring to (international, local)? what kind of international profile we are talking about?
In simple words, what I mean is that after all rankings is just an indicator posed by a foreign organization - complete stranger to our education system - who in their capacity, did they once step foot in this country experiencing for themselves our lecture hall? If not, then it is more or less the same as saying the Northern Arctic Polar Bear as off-white skin when it is not! Do you actually know that they have black skin? Think again.
Of course the main aim of the public Malaysian universities should be at least on the top 50 list of world rankings, that's for sure but I would say, in a long run universities should be more focused on their social responsibility by giving back to the society directly or indirectly. Directly, by means of the 'midas touch' of the graduates contributing back to the community upon graduating. While indirectly, academicians must be proactive in their researches not only to uplift living conditions of the public but most importantly preserve nature and promote sustainability in their scientific endeavors. Such are the essence that our universities still lacking of these days.
As the American poet John Ciardi put it all: "A university is what a college becomes when the faculty loses interest in its students"
Until the universities in Malaysia realized this, world rankings is but another coffee-stall everyday talk. Being part of the USM undergraduates, I would suggest that USM should first promptly abide to the immediate check-up. Unless this is resolved, the realization of world class university as a viable concept will face a daunting uphill challenge and it starts with you, inside, NOW.
Wednesday, September 23, 2009
Not only that the participants were nourished physically (thanks for the sumptuous delicacies especially the fish fillets) we were also blessed spiritually with the hospitality and events i.e. praise & worship & talk sessions held during the camp. Then, not to mention those stories when old friends walked down-memory-lane brooding the past.
I maybe biased but needless to say, ICG '09 is a success. Thumbs up to all my friends in the organizing committees for a job well done!
Of course, as someone who upholds the spirit of humanity, others' rights are top priority but being a Christian I am, ICG '09 has thought me quite a simple lesson: it's O.R.A.I.T. to be cool! O.R.A.I.T. as in the acronym of "Our Religion As the In-Thing"
Some of the points stressed out by the speakers during the session was quite intrigued and mind-opening. I remember Augustine Anthuvan mentioned about how mass media affecting the minds of the people by means of their news reporting. Challenges come not when the media are at complete tremor but it's when injustice pertaining to the people and how the journalists react that matters. He was also quoted saying that not all news @ events are to be reported in response to public sentiments, of which he argued those reports maybe offensive, so, the question is, how and in what ways do the media practice freedom of expression when certain things (truths) are still being swept under the carpet?
Again, there were quite a number of speakers such as Tricia Yeoh, Slyvester Wong, Fr. Jojo and Jerald Joseph who believed that one should be able to stand up to affirm his/her faith in order to face the real robust world.
Juwita Suwito rapped up everything well when she said that faith should be made personal in our living: to be portrayed in every single thing we do, becoming the salt and light of the world starting from oneself.
If ever I were to learn something from the event, it must be the fact that everyone is different and unique in their own ways of contemplating the word "cool". To me, differences and uniqueness are perfectly imperfect! Otherwise, life must be very dull when things are all the same, don't you agree?
Cool in the way that, it reminds us to lead this precious-one-and-only life to the fullest accordingly to christian values and applying them to daily life. As I always believe, one may know all of the chapters including pages of events in the Bible, able to speak in tongues and evangelize, purportedly claimed Lord Jesus as saviour etc. but in the end it's the mere truth that actions speak louder than words that counts.
Here are some pictures for you peps, of us been there doing these... enjoy!
May the ICG '09 left footprints of hope, courage, and faith to all as we walk our journeys and as we go on, let us be reminded of those who are marginalized, asylum seekers and prevalence of injustice around us that through you, they will also experience the love of God.
Friday, September 11, 2009
One cannot simply becomes a man without first experiencing certain moments that defines it.
As we grow up, things change - rule of thumb. No one ever born yesterday, miraculously still the same of who he/she was years after that. Even Benjamin Button grows up younger though born old. That's life. Everyday's situations and actions we took become more difficult. Back in childhood, you just have to do it to get it – you know, you cried in the hope that somebody will get you what you want, isn’t it? Now, it involves some nervous system reacting to the brain through the medulla oblongata before electric current is being translated into a process called thinking! Worse still, some even refused to think even though capable of doing so. Weird life it is. So, buckle up peps because we'll go through those moments now. See, whether we are fit to be one @ vice versa.
1. Realizing you don't know everything! In laymen word, we should be humble in the face of knowledge because not all did you know is all there is to know. One may have thousands of degrees in science, arts and economy but at the end do he/she knows how to operate and maintain a chainsaw? Where's the best site to plant a mule? You see, not all we know. Not because me & you are stupid. No, no, we aren’t and we ain't good either. It's just there's limitation to everything. That's why life is unique for we cannot live alone. We need others to fill in our know-everything pothole slots so that it'll complete as Pierre Simon De Laplace (1827), great mathematician once said “What we know is little, what we don’t know is immense” Have you realized it before?
2. Receiving your first real defeat. When this is mentioned, we are not talking about your losing to juniors back in school days. Here, we’re referring to adult defeats – heartbroken, being dumped, family estrangements and losses – the ones that cut deep straight into ego leaving scar in you because as can be seen they spotlight failure of temper (make you look un-cool), character and maturity. When this kind of moments appeared to be on your way, what will you do? Are you able to limb to your feet, stand tall and smile with your teeth missing? In simple words, are we going to let go off our ego? You’d better be if you wanna be a man!
3. Becoming an orphan. This is certainly the most defining one, when both of our mom and dad are officially 7 feet beneath the ground. Suddenly, we’re all alone by our own to head the family. In a blink of eyes, it feels like the clock stops ticking. No more advice and cuddling around – even though those are the things we hate most when they still alive – To my friends who have loss their precious ones especially parents lately, I offer deep condolence. I admit that I’ll never understand those feeling until the very day I lose them too but till then, I just wanna be the very best I can, at least, to make my parents proud of saying: “That’s my son!”
4. Choosing to marry. This is one of men’s nightmares because it is a matter of life and death. I am not talking about some partners who took bow minutes ago, then go for a break up after hours of marriage – that’s not even fit to be called a marriage, it’s more likely a relationship miscarriage! What kind of person do we want to spend the rest of our life with? Can you imagine, you’ll be on the same bed for say more than 40 years! I believe this is serious matter and only a dumber refused to acknowledge it. Recently, there’s a friend of mine who are in a relationship dilemma of reasons only he knows – Having quite a heavy fruitful talk with him - If ever I were to learn something, it’s must be his remark saying “There’s concrete reasons why man keeps secrets.”
5. Becoming a father. I know I’m not entitled to talk about it simply because I’m not married yet but from my observation as I’ve always said to my dad “Anyone can become a father, but not all can be called Dad because to me a dad is someone whom I’ll always look up to no matter how tall I’ve grown up” Upon hearing that, all he did was smile, that’s my dad – the very person who never once lay a finger on me – yet, I’ve become what I’m now.
So, for those who have been through all these, YOU ARE THE MAN!
Wednesday, September 9, 2009
What is the sole thing that provides us with sensation, governs our thoughts and drives us to explore our desires? Lust? Determination? You bet, it is the brain. This organ is so simple and yet so complex and at the same time embodies an unsurpassed fragility. In a way, our brains govern all the activities of the mind. So, for a start, did good brain implies better intelligence? Meaning to say, those who are mentally-retarded are way to be intellectually smart?
Although in western culture we perceive intelligence to involve skill in academic subjects and science, intelligence can take on different meanings depending on the circumstances. In an urban environment, having "street smarts," the ability to get around in a city, is of utmost importance, and different cultures place emphasis on different faculties of the mind in their definition and value of intelligence.
That being said, the currently accepted all-around definition of intelligence is as follows: intelligence is the capacity to understand one's external and internal environments, think rationally, and use resources effectively when faced with challenges.
IQ tests are rarely competent in perceiving one's degree of intelligence. The only benefits of having a standard and accurate intelligence test are obvious. Placement in schools and jobs would be easily determined and everyone could justify their level of achievement according to their IQ score. However, things are not nearly so simple. Even at its current best, intelligence testing contains inherent flaws that do not allow one to simply determine intelligence from an hour-long test.
The theory behind the IQ, or intelligence quotient, is that there is an average "mental age" for people of different ages. Thus, an IQ test is a test designed to determine a person's relative intelligence using a quotient. By taking a person's Mental Age (MA) and dividing it by their Chronological Age (CA) and multiplying by 100, we get the Intelligence Quotient. Thus, a person who has a Mental Age equal to his or her Chronological Age would have an IQ score of 100. This is supposed to be the average and most common IQ score. So, peps if you are to score around 100-120 in IQ tests, be reminded that you are just mere average. Don't simply brag about something you omitted to know otherwise, the end will justify the means.
It's time for us to widen our perspectives on the matter of intelligence per say. If the society can eventually cuddled to the present IQ test method of determining one's degree of intelligence, then why shouldn't we consider other theories - which is more to life - such as The Multiples Intelligence Theory developed by Howard Gardner & The R. J. Stenberg's Triarchic Theory?
According to Gardner in his book, The Five Minds of Future, an intelligence person of the millennium has to master the 7 separate domains of intelligences in order to be justly talented. His pool of domains encompassed:
1. Musical intelligence
2. Body Kinesthetic intelligence
3. Logical-mathematical intelligence
4. Linguistic intelligence
5. Spatial intelligence
6. Intrapersonal intelligence
7. Interpersonal intelligence
R.J. Sternberg, whose interest in intelligence testing originated with his own test anxiety, is one of the foremost contemporary figures in intelligence theory. His main contribution was the triarchic theory of intelligence, which incorporates practical knowledge as a part of intelligence. According to Sternberg, the three aspects of intelligence are componential, experiential, and contextual.
1. Componential Intelligence - involves the mental components involved in analyzing, processing, and organizing information involved in problem solving.
2. Experiential Intelligence - the part of intelligence that involves the way that past experiences and knowledge affect a person's ability to solve problems.
3. Contextual Intelligence - takes into account the ability of a person to use his or her intelligence to face everyday demands. It is in some ways a measure of a person's "street smarts."
Moreover, history had shown that one did not to be specifically intelligent to become successful, it's more on how one's interact with each single essence of life. Einstein never took an IQ test before being dubbed as the greatest physicist of all time, so on with Mozart, there's no such thing as an IQ during his time yet he's the most celebrated artist ever lived and also neither did Bill Gates ever think of an IQ driven formula to be successful becoming one of the richest on Earth. All of them shared only one thing. They know the key to success and that key is way in our mind waiting for it's time to be heeded as Rene Descartes once said "I think, therefore, I am"
"life is where intelligence operates' and not in the classroom. . . . The true measure of success is not how well one does in school, but how well one does in life" - Anon.