This is one of the most beautiful Malaysian word I know, and it kind of means getting together, working together, big party like. Today when I was out walking, I saw several different types of wildflowers – all different colours – in one small patch of earth. They looked very happy and were obviously thriving.
When I did my Biology A level, my class went to Stoughton and Ashurst Forest to study the flora and fauna. I was very impressed then how the plants seemed to know what to do and when to grow. The sun seekers grew in the open spots; those who thrived in darkness under the trees. They grew at different times of spring, too, the dogwoods and the bluebells, and the many flowers whose names I have forgotten.
It brings home to me this point, though: human beings are born wired to make others happy before our cognitive function got corrupted. Look at babies playing peek-a-boo. They would do anything to raise a smile from us. They are at their happiest when we are laughing with them. We are thus united in this happy puddle of laughter. Maybe that is why I have five kids and would love to have more – I am simply addicted to laughter and that feel-good vibe.
Then somewhere along the line, things change in human beings. We are now more fractured than ever. So much pent-up anger, so much hatred. A beautiful summer’s evening in Hyde Park a couple of days ago turned into a water fight that resulted in two policemen getting stabbed. Hyde Park is where families come out in their droves in summer to meet up with their friends for picnics and baseball games.
It is easy to take to our keyboards to ‘share’ political rhetorics on social media about the things that go wrong, hoping to get mass support for our views. But I think that only creates more polarisation. I don’t think that is the solution. I used to slag off Tony Blair BIG TIME, but it has not achieved anything. It had not given me peace either to vent my spleen about him. I think we have to start at grassroots level for world politics. We have to build our family. FAMILY: Resolve the conflicts, iron out the unspoken issues, work on a vision. We have to build our communities. COMMUNITY: Work together, help each other, think as a unit. A patchwork of happy communities eventually join up to make a harmonious quilt but it starts with one always. And that one is you ❤
If tiny plants can do it, why can’t we?
This is the anthem for the Rio Olympics that is made from the different national anthems in the world – the Malaysian part is sung by a French woman in Paris, etc.
For the story of the anthem, please click here.