May 10, 2006

National Unity

Posted in Malaysia, The Cause at 7:40 pm by egalitaria

In the ultimate display of national unity, some Indian, Chinese and Malay bystanders came together with the mission of helping a damsel in distress with her car and engine woes this bright morning.

Amidst the heat and disruption to an already busy day full of disruptions, I basked in the presence of something real. Skip the rhetoric. Get to the core. What is the heartbeat of every Malaysian? What is conceivable? What is the public space that we are all comfortable with?

No definite answers, but there is a true sense of solidarity and I wish more Malaysians would feel it. Forget about the high-levels who want to politicise every issue, and I mean every issue. What is national unity really?

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1 Comment

  1. Sivin said,

    Great questions raised you … (1) What is the heartbeat of every Malaysian? (2) What is conceivable? (3) What is the public space that we are all comfortable with? (4) What is national unity really?

    Let’s try some imagination, I’ll start with myself:
    (1) My heartbeat at this stage is simply to genuinely be friends and enter authentic conversations with those I perceive to be “different” from me.
    (2) We can based on (1) begin to talk face to face on matters of mutual concern, agree, diagree, enter into some free flow of sharing first before trying to persuade the other to accept our positions. Of course, a lot of this may need to happen when we are doing things together. Helping another doesn’t require us to hold same motivations on why we do what we do, but in the process we can understand why we do what we do and then move towards a more shared vision together?
    (3) I’m not sure whether we would be fully comfortable in any space. I’d be open to hear what others have to say. For me, I find that for those who see the importance of national unity beyond slogans and real life practice, often, I need to face my discomfort and just enter into whatever public space that is available to me here and now.
    (4) I too am asking this question – hopefully in more plain spoken language and watchful of political and detached rhetoric.


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