Saturday, June 10, 2023

GOD, SEX & THE TAO (updated)

“The ultimate truth is so simple; it is nothing more than being in one's natural, original state. It is a great wonder that to teach such a simple truth a number of religions should be necessary, and so many disputes should go on between them as to which is the God-ordained teaching. What a pity! Just be the Self, that is all.” ~ Sri Ramana Maharshi

Kent W. Dahl
Leaving aside the Tao for now, God and Sex are both loaded, explosive words that have ruined lives, divided families, ignited wars, and destroyed entire civilizations. This is why I tend to avoid using these two contentious words. There are so many different ways to approach these concepts – and just as many ways to bypass them altogether. But in this instance I choose to label the ineffable mystery of our origins and destiny, God, if only for the sake of controversy...

IMAGINE MY SHOCK when I discovered, at 19, that I was God.

It was confusing, to say the least. Outwardly I looked the same as I always did – but inwardly I was seeing everything through different eyes. I realized that I existed in all things as sub-atomic awareness.

Everyday “inanimate” objects came alive as mineral or vegetable consciousness, responsive to focused attention. When I turned my eyes skyward to admire the stars and planets, I was conscious that what I was seeing was actually an externalization, a holographic projection of the awesome beauty and mystery of my own being. When I later stumbled on an exclamation attributed to Pythagoras (“Astonishing! Everything is intelligent!”), I understood perfectly what he meant.

Everyone I saw around me was essentially an aspect of my extended Self – not my superficial Ego but my Core Self. The astounding diversity and ingenuity of my multitudinous permutations of form and function inspired deep awe and reverence.

The ineffably sublime, the absurdly ridiculous, the ultramicroscopic, the supertelescopic, the metagalactic, and the paracosmic. All of it was me. Indeed, the individual ego dissolves the instant it experiences the sacredness of gecko shit and the equanimity of snowcapped mountains as part of the same continuum of wonder.

This mystical initiation made it impossible for me to ever again subscribe to anthropocentrism (which the dictionary defines as “interpreting reality exclusively in terms of human values and experience”). Inevitably, the use of alphanumeric symbols and language has led us to a male-dominated evolutionary dead-end – one in which we destroy everything beautiful and natural around us in our psychopathological pursuit of illusory power.

Only much later did I learn that what I had experienced was the death of my social ego, my persona. In its place arose a transcendental identity (which some call Paramatman), reconnecting me with a vivid remembrance of having always existed in a world without beginning and without end.

And yet, in my interactions with people around me (parents, friends, strangers) who saw only my physical form - and who insisted on relating to me as a 2-dimensional social ego, devoid of mystery and existential depth – I became aware that I could easily slip back into the role I had played up till now, as a human being transiting between adolescence and adulthood.

Perhaps if I had chosen to be born in India or Tibet, my parents may have taken me to a temple where some priest or lama might have understood the situation immediately and suggested that I be placed in their care for special grooming as a newborn divine human. Instead, my parents took me to a madhouse where, for 3 months, I was left to learn how to navigate multidimensional realities, with the help of other inmates.

“You have to go out of your mind to come to your senses.” ~ Timothy Leary

It was a truly instructive period in my early life, and in those 3 months I learned far more than I could possibly have, had I spent 3 years in some university. The physical world around us, I discovered, is akin to a grand illusion maintained by consensus – by the acquiescence of millions of humans hardwired to believe that their everyday lives are the only empirical reality, and that the realms of the divine, as well as the diabolical, exist somewhere else (if at all) and not within our own minds.

I began to notice that the spark of divinity – and its shadow aspect or terrible twin – remains dormant in most humans until activated by some powerful experience. However, few have the necessary attention span or focus to nurture and fully integrate it. So our intimations of divine or diabolical consciousness are usually evanescent, fading from memory the moment we snap back into mundane awareness. That’s when God (as well the Devil) are banished to the mythic realms, as mere superstitions or external, unseen forces – where they can be invoked by predatory priesthoods as a means of behavior modification through religious indoctrination.

Celibacy and abstinence from sensual pleasures have long been considered prerequisites of the spiritual path. Sex and God have been made into seemingly antagonistic and antonymous concepts. Adam and Eve’s fall from grace and banishment from Eden are euphemistically attributed to their disobedience when they tasted the Forbidden Fruit, against God’s specific instruction. A closer reading reveals that the real issue was their discovery of the pleasures of recreational sex.

Well, that’s the Old Testament God for you. A judgmental, punitive, authoritarian male despot who views pleasure as sin, and pain as virtue; who sees wise women as witches and beautiful ones as temptresses. An angry, warlike, almighty tyrant who demands absolute loyalty and blood sacrifice. Who loves all creatures great and small – yet consigns some to eternal perdition and neverending torment.

Was this really an aspect of my Godself? I was prompted to do a little research on the God of Abraham, variously known as Yahweh, IHVH, Jehovah, Ialdabaoth, Zeus, Deus, Jove, Eli, and later Allah. The Hebrew version of the Old Testament, I discovered, was a paraphrase and summary of a much earlier, far more detailed scripture from Sumerian times, called Enuma Elish (When the Gods Walked the Earth).

In Hebrew the word God appears as Adonai (Lord) and sometimes Elohim – a plural reference to godlike entities involved in designing ecosystems and cultivating intelligent life within the galaxy, and perhaps beyond. Mystical literature (e.g., The Urantia Book and J.J. Hurtak’s Keys of Enoch) describes the Elohim as “Paradise Sons of God.” As I pondered this I had a vision of a primal supernova emanating rays of energy and consciousness in all directions.

Alone instead of All One

Each ray acquired individuality as it separated from its Source and had the potential to become a new star and condense into a multitude of planetary systems. I experimented with altering the spelling of Son to Sun – and it made even more sense. I was reminded of the rainbow effect of passing a beam of light through a prism. This is how One becomes Many.

Along with individuality came the potential to disconnect and disengage from everything beyond our ego fields, thereby reinforcing the illusion of separateness. Unplugged from the morphogenetic field or collective mind, it was easy for us to feel more and more isolated – alone instead of All One - to the extent that we no longer remembered where we originated, the source of our being. Eventually we even began doubting if something called Source existed.

To assuage the terrifying sense of eternal solitude, we began an internal dialog with ourselves, and eventually split into bi-polarity – one pole taking on the Yin or Feminine aspect, the other the Yang or Masculine aspect. Thus was formed the electromagnetic spectrum – the extrovert electrical male interacting with the introvert magnetic female in an endless dance of attraction and repulsion.

In the state of polarized consciousness we learnt to individualize as egos, and then specialize – just as atoms become different components of the anatomy as they form dense electromagnetic fields which gain mass and become molecules, then cells.

Evolution is driven by cell permutation and diversification, as differences get emphasized over similarities. Variations on a theme begin to occur and recur, according to synergetic-energetic-geometric principles that govern the manifestation of physical form.

We have only recently begun to recognize and identify these universal principles or mathematical laws of form. The golden or phi ratio rediscovered by early scientist-mystics like Pythagoras is what inspired a gifted 12th century Italian mathematician named Fibonacci to realize that all growth proceeds spirally in accordance with a predictable numerical sequence: 0, 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21, 34… the next number being 55, the sum of the two preceding it, and so on… to infinity!

Through an understanding of hidden structures gained by a close study of fractal geometry, cutting-edge thinkers have been repairing the broken link between female and male brains, between intuition and intellect, between mystical experience and the scientific method.

Meanwhile back in the realm of mythology, I found mytheology

So where does that leave the jealous, vengeful, punitive God of Abraham? It turns out that Yahweh (whose name in Hebrew is spelt IHVH) is by no means the Supreme Being or Prime Creator. In fact, IHVH is a collective of Archons inhabiting the Material Universe (or at least the other planets in our Solar System, according to Gnostic teacher John Lamb Lash).

Archon is the Greek word for lord, judge, or ruler. In short, external authority. From the Gnostic perspective, the Archons are really just a freakish species of Mind Parasite that preys on organic lifeforms through "neurological hacks," manipulating our perception of reality through fear, thereby thwarting our evolutionary potential and hijacking our true destiny as autonomous aspects of Divine Intelligence.

The Greeks, particularly the Platonists, called the Archons demiurges and named Ialdabaoth as the young demiurge associated with Gaia or Earth. Some Gnostic scholars attribute the formation and seeding of the physical world to Ialdabaoth – and believe it was Ialdabaoth who expelled Adam and Eve from the Garden of Eden. (John Lash has a very different and far more intriguing interpretation of the Gnostic creation myth, too complex to discuss here, which he eruditely expounds in his seminal 2006 work Not In His Image).

Ialdabaoth was, it turns out, a parthenogenetic experiment conducted by Sophia, the Research and Development department of Prime Creator, Inc. The story goes that the newborn god was so deformed and monstrous to look upon, Sophia kept it quarantined in a Null Zone where it grew and began exploring its godlike powers of sub-creation, utterly unaware that it was merely a localized phenomenon – and by no means the whole shebang. Truth is often stranger than science fiction.

In effect, we have a bastard, feeling-unloved god believing itself to be God Almighty and imposing its arrogant, immature and temperamental will on everything around it. Sound familiar? That’s you and me on a bad hair day! Alas, this happens to be the monolithic image of God imprinted within the deep psyche of those who subscribe to the Abrahamic Agenda.

So when I broke free of my social ego and reconnected with extradimensional aspects of my Self, I spontaneously regained access to data from well beyond the Null Zone - where information flow is closely monitored and controlled by the agents of the Archons, to keep subscribers addicted to and imprisoned within the recycled ego-reinforcing melodramas they experience as their everyday lives. That’s right, folks, we’re talking about The Matrix.

Liberated from layers of old programming, I became the Metaprogram, and then the Metaprogrammer or Architect. I could have stopped there and ended up trapped in the realm of Mind in a holographic labyrinth. But my physical atoms, the wisdom of my cellular being, became animated with the remembrance of Sophia, my cosmic mother, who joyfully took me back into her arms and proclaimed me beautiful and true – not only as a soul, but also as a physical body.

Gods, like everyone else, experience infancy, adolescence, and maturity. In view of this, it is apparent that the psychic oppression of religious dogma is really just a problem of humans with domineering mothers who haven’t outgrown their belief in a childish, insecure, ill-tempered deity who is prone to approve of some things, and disapprove of others.

Experience becomes Knowledge (or Gnosis) as maturity sets in - and ultimately blossoms into Wisdom

Those who imagine God as an omniscient, omnipresent, omnipotent father figure tend to associate sex with deeply-ingrained guilt feelings and anxiety about getting caught and expelled from paradise. Indeed, the Book Religions warn of the grave perils of sexual intercourse unsanctioned by holy matrimony. Judaism, Christianity, and Islam emphatically preach that “illicit sex” is a damnable offence in the eyes of God. The taboo against recreational (as opposed to procreational) sex has spawned widespread neuroses and psychoses and perpetuated a culture of false piety and hypocrisy. Sex has been the subject of countless off-color jokes and the ruin of many careers, especially among politicians and priests. Sex has been equated with dirt – but what is dirt if not the earth itself, the soil from which springs sustenance and abundance?

Dragon vs Phoenix by Alex Grey
The suppression of sexuality has, in fact, only served to turn it into an obsession, giving rise to aberrant attitudes toward pleasure wherein sex becomes confused with power - with dominance and submission, conquest and colonization, rape and pillage, with the exploitation and enslavement of women and children. By distorting and perverting our understanding of sexuality, stripping it of its sacred dimensions, power-hungry predator priesthoods have been able to maintain a deadly stranglehold on human consciousness, keeping it confined within a prison built of psychological and emotional blocks, with invisible bars of erroneous belief and fake morality.

How many generations of humans have been bludgeoned into submission to external authority with the evil teaching that pleasure is sinful - and that the wages of sin is death without hope of resurrection or salvation? Spiritual pilgrims of all faiths have been misled into renouncing sex if they desire union with God - their own Core Self. Others are promised unbridled sexual pleasure should they willingly martyr themselves in the name of Allah.

I consider myself entirely fortunate that I have never, even for a fleeting moment, experienced sexual guilt. Even as a child beginning to explore the secret pleasures of autoeroticism, it was a sense of excitement and wonder I felt, never shame. Instinctively, I knew the social taboo against sex was diabolically wrong, and that the key to true enlightenment and liberation was to be found in activating the kundalini, the primordial life force symbolized by the coiled serpent asleep at the base of the spine. Indeed, the awakened kundalini unleashes the creative urge when it isn’t channeled towards procreation.

Everywhere I looked I found the hidden clues: in the binary code of lines and circles, the playful dance of wind and water, sky and earth consummating their desire, the courtship rituals of dragons and unicorns.

Life itself is erotic, a paean to Aphrodite and Eros… the sacred portal to our own original and ultimate divinity… our sovereignty as bodies, minds and souls… our precious Humanity. I experience sex as a yearning to fuse with other energy fields – the impulse to reintegrate with all aspects of our Original Self.

To be fully present in the body, surrendered to love, heart wide open, tingling with vitality, blissfully merging with another warm, quivering, welcoming field – becoming one again and whole, and therefore holy. That’s the foretaste of paradise that lures us back into the beauty and truth of wholly conscious physical embodiment.

Godly sex as sexy gods and goddesses – that’s the path to balance, health, sanity, and integrity

The duality of Good Gods versus Evil Gods is finally reconciled when we see the evil in good and the good in evil – just like the Yin-Yang. Bringing focused attention to the joy of the moment, holding back nothing, dark secrets transmuted to self-aware humor, turning the static to ecstatic, dynamic, harmonic equilibrium. Amazed and amused by the miracle of our limited physical vehicles in the limitless context of the metaphysical, easing comfortably into our beautiful bodies and activating them with tender kisses and caresses, we go beyond confusion to fusion. No longer alone but All One again.

And this is where the Tao comes in

The first line of the first verse in the Tao Te Ching states: “The Absolute Tao cannot be named.” It is ineffable, beyond concepts or words, nothing and everything, beginningless and endless, the Great Void or Primordial Chaos from which all formal existence issues. The Tao is a field of infinite potentiality beyond life and death, being and non-being. It cannot be seen but can be felt; cannot be dissected or discussed – but it can be embraced, enjoyed and celebrated.

The Tao is the silent backdrop against which all cosmic dramas are enacted. Our stories – and we are all stories – unfold in a many-storied universe that resembles a gigantic server farm where individual as well as collective memories are stored. It works along the lines of social networking sites like facebook and twitter: each entity is free to create an account, present a public profile, share photos, videos, opinions, interests, discuss current affairs or philosophy, play trivial games or build virtual communities, trawl pixel oceans for food or sex, interact with many or just a few.

Each timeline becomes an expression of the individual who has the ability to post and delete, expose or hide; the timeline documents the journey of each user through time and space. There is a delicate balance between anarchistic freedom and authoritarian control – a constant push-and-pull between users and shareholders, between follower and followed, between private and public, between active and passive involvement.

Digital technology has introduced a plethora of refreshing and stimulating new metaphors with which the mind can apprehend the mystery of Arthur Koestler’s ghost in the machine, explore fact and fantasy, navigate the known and the unknown, the spontaneous and the predictable, the mechanical and the magickal.

In the numinous realm of the Tao, creationism and evolutionism are reconciled, either/or is replaced by both/and. We are divine and human, animal and angel, magnificent and insignificant. In our canine aspect we are God; in our feline we are the Devil. If you can love both cats and dogs, you have integrated the diabolical and divine within your psyche.

Welcome home!

Earth Angel by Josephine Wall

"The Universe is made of stories,
not of atoms." 
~ Muriel Rukeyser

[First posted 3 October 2013. Reposted 22 July 2015, 1 June 2016, 
14 February 2019, 30 April 2022 & 12 January 2023]

Friday, June 9, 2023

The Path to Pulau Buah (In Memory of Bidar Chik, Batin of Pertak)

Bidar Chik, Batin (headman) of Pertak, breathed his last on 6 June 2014 around 10:30 a.m. I dedicate this chapter from TANAH TUJUH ~ Close Encounters with the Temuan Mythos to his fond memory.

Bidar Chik was appointed Batin of Kampung Pertak in 1994, the year I took up residence 
in the High Hut. Initially we had our differences - when he allowed loggers into the area - 
but we became close allies during the campaign against the Selangor Dam a few years later. 
My parting gift to him was this garland.

PULAU BUAH, the Isle of Fruits, is the Temuan paradise, the Garden of Eden we knew as Home before the... what? The Fall? The Great Flood? Even Seri Pagi wasn't too sure what terrible crime we had committed as a species to have warranted banishment from Pulau Buah. Surely the gods would not introduce sexual reproduction to the human race only to punish us for it? (No one seemed to have given this any thought. Indah merely told me the tale she probably heard when her first period arrived: the one about Tuhan finding menstrual stains on the Stairway to Heaven and deciding to seal it forever to humanity.)
“Sometimes we can still visit Pulau Buah,” Seri Pagi said, “but only in dreams, or if we're very ill and in a sort of coma. In the old days, we had dukun (shamans) who were powerful enough, and pure enough, to travel there without losing their physical connection to the Earth. Nowadays, we only tell stories about Pulau Buah.”
Mak Minah said her great-grandmother used to travel to Pulau Buah in her dreams. “She told us there was a great tree in a beautiful clearing by a crystalline stream. The tree was laden with ripe rambutans (a hairy-skinned, succulent, juicy fruit) - only these were no ordinary rambutans, they were enormous! And best of all, she could reach up and pluck a fruit from the lowest branch without any effort. The spirit of the tree told her not to throw away the peel after she had eaten the fruit. Instead, she had to carefully place the peel on the ground below the branch where the fruit had been growing. One fruit was enough to satisfy her, it was so large and so delicious. The next time she returned to the spot, the same fruit was back on the branch, ready to be plucked and eaten!”
Nadi Empok & his wife Lumoh in 1994
Penengah admitted that he had tried to visit Pulau Buah in his youth, and failed. “Before you can proceed, you must go to the foot of Gunung Raja and wait for an invitation. If the guardian favors you, you will somehow find yourself going up the mountain. I've heard the old folks telling of signs and special spirit guides that can show you the path to Pulau Buah, which is not in this world. I didn't even get beyond the foot of Gunung Raja. If the guardian doesn't want you to enter the sacred realm, the mountain itself will move away, so that you find yourself somewhere else. 

Well, that's what happened. I was there with a few friends. We were certain it was Gunung Raja. Then there was heavy rain and strong winds and strange sounds that really frightened us. Of course, it could have been a tiger or leopard, but even if it was, you can bet it was no ordinary tiger or leopard. When the weather cleared, we realized we were nowhere near Gunung Raja. We turned around and somehow found our way back to the village. We were glad to be alive.”
Nadi Pak Empok may have been on that expedition. Or he may have made a separate attempt to scale Gunung Raja. He spoke reverently about the very special atmosphere that pervades the Royal Mountain, even around its base. The beautiful birds and plants he saw along the way, the mysterious cries of unknown creatures. “We heard the musical voices of maidens calling to us. It was hard not to obey their call, it was so seductive. But one of the group suddenly told us to flee for our lives, and we did. I don't know what would have become of us if we had tried to find the source of those haunting cries.”
Utat Merkol a year before he left for
Pulau Buah in 2007
Soon after the Selangor Dam project was announced, I found Utat lying feverish on a mat in Indah’s house. “I dreamt about Pulau Buah,” he whispered. “I was there, at the peak of Gunung Raja, and I saw Mamak and Inak Bongsu.” I was all ears. Anoora’s uncle Utat rarely discussed his dreams, being an exceptionally private and shy man, but he revealed that he had twice been summoned to the Sacred Mountain by the Temuan’s tutelary gods - a signal honor for any Temuan.
“How did they appear to you, what did they look like?” I prompted Utat.
“They were absolutely splendid, more beautiful and much, much grander than kings and queens. They looked human, but in a more luminous, far nobler form.” (Lothlorien and the High Elves immediately came to my mind.)
“What did Mamak and Inak Bongsu have to say to you?”
Utat was silent for a moment. “They said they were very concerned about the destruction that is about to take place. The dam. It makes them angry and they want me to warn people that this desecration is loathsome to them. They have the capacity to destroy the dam, but they do not wish to harm anybody.”
“Well, are you going to tell the rest of the tribe?”
Utat shrugged and was silent. “People won’t believe me,” he finally said.
“WHEN SOMEONE DIES,” Penengah said, “their soul wanders around familiar places for a while before a longing to go home takes them towards Gunung Raja. After a while, they will find themselves at a fork in the trail. One path leads to Pulau Buah; the other... well, the other leads nowhere.”
How does one identify the correct path?
Penengah seemed reluctant to reveal the signs that would indicate the correct path. Then a gleam appeared in his eye and he whispered: “We don't usually talk about this, but I think you will understand why. For years people have tried to sway us from our beliefs. They wanted us to convert to Islam or Christianity or whatever. But our ancestors warned us about this. They told us there is a black dog guarding the path to Pulau Buah. If the soul is destined for Pulau Buah, the dog wags its tail and shows the way. But if the dog growls, it means the soul has accumulated too much sin (dosa).    
What happens if someone takes the wrong path?  
“They find the path easy going at first, very well maintained and attractive to behold. But at the end of the trail, they find themselves on an illusory bridge that goes nowhere.”
Can you describe what happens to someone who tries to cross the bridge?
“Well, they drop into a pit when the bridge collapses. A pit full of rats and cockroaches, creatures of the dark that devour anything that falls in.”
Sounds like hell to me. Is this the influence of Muslim and Christian eschatology on the Temuan belief system? Or is the Heaven-Earth-Hell configuration a common denominator of all human cosmogony?

Bidar (left) officiating at the engagement ceremony of Anoora's pretty niece Halus in 2010


Batin Bidar Chik
No. 1 Kg Pertak
Batu 8, Jalan Gap
44000 Kuala Kubu Baru
Ulu Selangor

13 April 2004
Y.A.B. Perdana Menteri Malaysia
Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi
Pusat Pentadbiran Kerajaan Malaysia
Putrajaya 62502


Why do so many Orang Asli lack motivation?  Because we feel homeless in our own homeland.

1. We congratulate and welcome you as our new prime minister.  It is our hope that with a fresh beginning, a new era of justice and wise governance will dawn.  I am only the humble headman of a small village of Orang Asli from the Temuan tribe in Ulu Selangor, voicing my thoughts and feelings.  But I have faith that my voice will be heard by the Honourable Prime Minister.

2. The beauty of the Pertak Forest Reserve where our small village of 43 houses is located has attracted many visitors from far and near.  Now that the Selangor Dam is complete, even more people are coming here to fish from the artificial lake.  We are glad that people appreciate the beauty of our ancestral homeground, birthplace of the Temuan tribe, indeed, our “pusat negri.”

The High Hut at Lata Puntung where I lived from April 1994 till October 1999

3. When we were resettled by the dam project, the Jabatan Hal Ehwal Orang Asli (JHEOA) assured us that each family would be issued an individual grant for our new houses, along with some dusun land.  However, nothing was said about the 400 acres approved for gazetting in 1965 as Orang Asli Reserve Land.  After 39 years, the status of this land remains uncertain.  We would like this matter clarified in writing.

4. In February 2004, we were informed that our new houses stand on State land for which we have been granted a 99-year lease.  We received a letter from the Land Office asking us to pay an assessment of RM540 by 11 May, 2004, or our land and houses will be forfeit.

5. There are few families in Kg Pertak that can afford to pay this amount in three months, or even six.  I cannot imagine what will happen to my sister-in-law, a widow who receives a monthly cash subsidy of RM70 from the Welfare Department.  How will she pay the assessment? 

6. The JHEOA told us not to worry about it.  They said Splash Sdn Bhd, the dam operator, has offered to pay on our behalf.  As nothing is in writing we have only their verbal promise.  Nearly a year ago the JHEOA organised a 3-day workshop on Fraser’s Hill for a group of villagers.  Each participant will receive RM50, they said.  Those who went are still waiting to be paid.

Bidar Chik came into his own as tribal chief 
during the 1999 campaign against the Selangor Dam 
7. Our ancestors have dwelt here from the dawn of time.  Nobody knows how long the Temuan have been here, but it is safe to say we have been here for a thousand generations.  Now we are told the land is on a 99-year lease, and we must pay an annual rent to live here.  When my great-granddaughter’s children reach a ripe old age, the lease will expire, and the tribe’s future will be decided by the Land Office.  If they choose not to extend the lease, our community will die out, for the life and identity of the Orang Asli are tied to our ancestral lands.

8. The Jabatan Hal Ehwal Orang Asli has existed for 50 years since the Emergency.  Their duty is to look after Orang Asli interests, not to belittle us.  To be honest, we Orang Asli do not have much trust in the JHEOA.  They seem set on destroying our way of life and our beliefs.  In the past they have joined forces with loggers to exploit our forests and pollute our streams.  Now they have turned us into rent-paying tenants on land we have inhabited for thousands of years.  We are not happy about this.  The JHEOA have had 50 years in which to rob us of our dignity, pride, confidence, and self-reliance - not to mention the ground beneath our feet.  For Orang Asli, the Emergency is not over yet.

9. Honourable Prime Minister, we humbly request that you intervene to save us from the JHEOA, which treats Orang Asli like unwanted stepchildren.  They never listen to us and they do not understand or respect us.  They tell us to let loggers clear our beautiful jungle so we can cultivate cash crops.  In the 1960s we were told to plant rubber trees but when they matured there was no demand for latex.  Now they talk about oil palm, but we do not understand the business, and do not wish to be at the mercy of middlemen and unstable market prices.  Most importantly, the forest must be preserved, not only for Orang Asli, but for all who value God’s creation.

10. We would rather be given the Reserve Land promised us 39 years ago so we can hunt and harvest fruit as we have always done.  We can also start small-scale ecotourism-related projects that will preserve the forest, and that will give us a chance to be our own bosses.  Younger Orang Asli who wish to seek their fortune elsewhere are encouraged to do so.  But as long as we have our ancestral lands, they at least have something to return to.

11. We urge that you investigate the unresolved issue of the 400 acres approved for gazetting in 1965 as Orang Asli Reserve Land, and instruct the Land Office to issue a communal title deed.  This is surely not too much to ask, as our ancestors originally roamed the whole of Pahang, Selangor, and Negri Sembilan.  But without the sense of permanency granted by official recognition of our customary lands, our people will be in despair and lack direction.  Grant us the land our ancestors left us as their legacy, and free us from the heavy-handed control of the JHEOA.  This is how we can regain our self-esteem, our spirit of independence, and our ability to prosper from the fruits of our own initiative.

12. The rest of the nation won its independence from colonial rule 47 years ago.  We feel it is time we Orang Asli, too, are allowed to taste the dignity and joy of freedom. 

13. A copy of this letter will be handed to Persatuan Orang Asli Semenanjung Malaysia (POASM) to be shared with my fellow Batins.
Yours faithfully,

Bidar Chik
Batin Kg Pertak
Ulu Selangor

[First posted 6 June 2014, reposted 6 June 2019]

Thursday, June 1, 2023

Quick, Tell Me A Jewish Joke! (repost)

A Jewish woman says to her mother:

"I'm divorcing Sheldon. All he wants is anal sex and my asshole is now the size of a 50-cent piece when it used to be the size of a 5-cent piece."

The Jewish Mother says:

"You're married to a multi-millionaire businessman, you live in an 8-bedroom mansion, you drive a Ferrari, you get $2500 a week allowance, you take 6 vacations a year and you want to throw all that away for 45 cents?"

[First posted 10 April 2008] 

Tuesday, May 30, 2023

Are you a Grinch or a Griot? Or both? (repost)

What’s a Grinch? I believe it’s a word Dr Seuss made up – but what a perfect way to describe one who tends to be dour, sour, grim and dire in outlook; who sees the worst in others and believes you can’t turn your back on anyone, not even your own bed-partner and, least of all, your own kids. Only a Grinch could invent a concept as burdensome as “Original Sin” – and only a would-be Grinch would subscribe to or promote it.

Grinches generally end up in careers that involve keeping humans (indeed, all other lifeforms) on a short leash (the shorter the better), controlling their behavior with a deadly arsenal of rules, regulations, constraints and restraints.

Among the greatest Grinches
that ever lived
You’ll find generations of Grinches in professions like law and law enforcement, bureaucracy, academia, publishing, pharmaceuticals, medicine, psychiatry, banking, stockbroking, gambling, insurance, covert agencies, the armed forces, defence industries, politics, the judiciary, and especially religious institutions (paying lip service to or impersonating a punitive, wrathful, vengeful, warlike Male Deity).

And because they are such Control Freaks, most Grinches aspire to be born into powerful families – preferably of aristocratic or royal pedigree – so they can throw their weight around, pull rank, and make life as hard as possible for you and me with absolute impunity.

Grinches possess a perverse sense of humor in that they can only laugh at other people’s misfortunes, shortcomings and foibles – but never at their own. They also love dark secrets and secrecy, plotting and scheming behind closed doors, although they tend to think of it as protecting their own precious privacy – and of course their own vested interest in maintaining the status quo.

However, they would be the first to invade other people’s privacy in the name of national security or economic stability. Indeed, they would happily condone statesponsored surveillance of every citizen as a preventive measure against crimes and terrorist attacks, real or imaginary.

The irony is that most criminals and terrorists tend to be Grinches too – or else they serve rival Godfather Grinches as their henchmen and dirty tricks consultants.

I suspect the real problem with Grinches is that they seem to be fatally lacking in imagination, and so their actions usually become destructive and oppressive. They are experts at destroying other people’s sense of well-being and their capacity to experience spontaneous joy – and apparently hell-bent on destroying all that is beautiful and natural around them, especially the ecosystem (which they perceive as something to be exploited and harnessed to their own Control Freak agendas).

Nevertheless, Grinches can be quite cute - but only when they admit to being Grinches!

So what’s a Griot?

Not all Griots are as beautiful, brainy & sexy as Ms Ribena Berry aka Jo Kukathas
Griot (pronounced gree-yoh) is probably a French word for storyteller, clown, artist, medicine man or woman. The word is mainly used to describe community shamans in French-speaking African nations like the Ivory Coast, Senegal and Mali – but today the term applies to those with a playful imagination who choose to express themselves through poetry, storytelling, music, drama, dance, filmmaking, spiritual healing and the visual arts.

Jit Murad: a well-known
local Griot
What distinguishes Griots from other folks is that they somehow manage to keep alive their inner child even when they have arrived at a venerable age. As such, Griots find it easy to look at everything afresh, from a novel perspective, and so they continually question the way things are done and why people do what people do. Griots are generally compassionate and empathetic, but are prone to whatever mischief they can get away with – especially when having to deal with Grinches.

Youssou N'Dour, named by Time magazine as
one of the 100 most influential humans in 2007
Griots instinctively know that rules are made to be broken, and that the ultimate form of discipline is internal, invisible and quite unobtrusive altogether. Outwardly Griots may appear unkempt or disorderly – but deep within they know exactly what their own limitations are at any given time, and are constantly looking forward to stretching those limits. Some Griots seem to prefer to live unstructured lives, eating whenever and whatever they want; sleeping at any time they require rest, and waking up when they’re ready to poke their noses beyond their front doors.

Just as you can’t see the skeletons that keep the form and shape of all things, the codes by which Griots conduct themselves are also concealed from sight.

Mirth-provoking Griot,
the late great George Carlin
While Grinches are obsessed with telling others what to do and what not, Griots delight in seeing others free themselves from mental shackles – and dedicate their lives to appreciating beauty and truth, and to celebrating the joys of freedom..

Grinches are easily offended. They expect others to walk on eggshells around them. One indiscreet remark, one inappropriate adjective, one imaginary insult is all it takes to get Grinches fired up with self-righteous indignation – and that’s when they get inspired to dream up new laws and statutes to regulate what people are allowed to think and say and what is absolutely taboo. Grinches grudgingly acknowledge that people tend to be more productive and healthier when they are happy. However, it won’t do for them to be too happy. Limits must be imposed!

Griot Extraordinaire, the late great Frank Zappa
Griots laugh at totems and taboos, even though they understand that some folks need visible symbols to reinforce their faith in the benevolence of the worlds and beings beyond our senses. Without making a big fuss out of it, every Griot already knows that he or she is actually an individualized and unique expression of universal truth; of forces and principles that govern the motion of atoms, planets, stars, constellations, and galaxies.

Are there only two types of humans?

Brilliant Griot-Grinch hybrid R. Buckminster Fuller

Some folks are hybrids – a cross between Grinch and Griot. A good example would be architects whose work requires a combination of creative imagination and rigorous adherence to specific laws – whether of physics or municipal councils. Great inventors and captains of industry also tend to be Grinch-Griot hybrids.

Many begin life as Griots, only to turn into Grinches after they reach adulthood – taking on the role of spouses, parents, schoolteachers, policemen, generals, judges, ministers, respectable pillars of society. Some are fortunate to realize, before it’s too late, that nature smiles upon the Griots, guardians of the child within and defenders of innocence - and somehow succeed in integrating both polarities, thereby attaining a special status as Masters of their own destinies.

16 July 2013 (first posted 18 July 2013, reposted 24 August 2016)

Wednesday, May 24, 2023

Saying Goodbye to a Sibling

The siblings in 2015: (L-R) Mike, Mae, Me & Lanny

In 2008 I participated in a Systemic Family Constellation group session facilitated by Barrie Musgrave and I hugely benefited from the experience. 

Family Constellation is a dynamic, interactive emotional therapy (developed in the 1990s by Bert Hellinger) based on the principle that every soul enters into physical embodiment via a soul cluster, never in isolation. Hence any attempt to release emotional trauma has to be approached in the context of the family into which we are inserted at birth. All I can say about Family Constellation is that in just one session, I found myself at peace and at ease with my blood family and acknowledged them all as cherished components of my extended being.

As the youngest of four siblings who arrived 8 years after my next brother Michael was born, I grew up feeling like an only child because of the age gap. My other siblings were sent off to boarding schools in their teens and by the time I reached puberty, they only featured in my world during term breaks, when I suddenly found myself sharing the house with a sister and two brothers. 

Michael M.F. Lee @ 18
During the Family Constellation session I found myself standing in a nuclear family circle with a huge space between Michael and myself. The facilitator asked if there had been other siblings that were aborted or stillborn and I remembered my mother telling me she had conceived twins before I came along much later. She told me the twins were stillborn (but later my sister insisted that the twins had been aborted). 

When two other participants (one of them my biological daughter Belle) volunteered to stand in for the etheric twins, the family circle finally felt complete. We acknowledged and welcomed the twins into the family and there was a palpable sense of joy and fulfillment in the atmosphere. Then we blessed and thanked the twins and released them back into the spirit realms.

As the youngest child I had an easy time growing up. By the time I arrived my parents were no longer overly enthusiastic about acting out the role of parents, which means they left me pretty much to my own devices. My sister Mae, being the firstborn and the only female, saw me as some kind of cuddly toy when she was in her late teens. while my elder brother Lanny enjoyed playing benevolent big brother whenever he was home from boarding school. 

The younger brother Michael (or Mickey, as everyone called him in his early youth, after a recently introduced Walt Disney character) had arrived on June 15th, 1942, at the height of the Japanese invasion of Malaya. My mother told me she could hear bombing raids from planes flying overhead and the sound of intermittent gunfire during the birth of her third child. Consequently, Mickey turned out to be the most timid sibling, and mirrored our mother's negative mental habits (she was generally inclined towards anxiety and worried a great deal about her health). She was also predisposed to putting her faith in the pharmaceutical prescriptions of allopathic (Western) medicine rather than traditional remedies that had survived thousands of years. By the time she hit 60 my mother was taking prescription drugs for at least 6 different conditions, including heart palpitations, high blood pressure, anemia and diabetes. I remember the alarming array of pills she kept in a basket by her bedside.

Mike, Mae & Me in 2013

What prompted this verbal nod to my siblings was finding a missed call at 5:35am from my niece Rebecca. She had wanted to inform me that my brother Mike had passed away peacefully around 4:45am on 24 May at the Johor Specialist Hospital (the same hospital where our father died on 14 October 2004). I had spoken to Mike on the phone less than a week ago and he had sounded really excited, talking non-stop at maximum velocity. I tried to get him to slow down, breathe deeply, stop talking for a few seconds so that I could give him an energy transfusion down the line. But there was no way he could slow down or be quiet even for a couple of seconds! He asked if I had sent him the tasty porridge and I told him it was from my daughter Belle who had been ordering food for her Uncle Mike when she learnt that it was getting harder for him to drive around and go shopping.

My brother Lanny had decided to hop on a plane and get to Singapore the moment he heard that Mike had been admitted to hospital. He arrived on the night of the 23rd, a few hours before Mike checked out. But he was able to accompany Mae and my elder daughter Moonlake when they went to the hospital to sort out the paperwork and arrange for Mike to be cremated and his ashes taken to Singapore where our parents' ashes are stored in a columbarium. 

Getting an eye test in January 2019
Mike had been hankering to be discharged so he could return to his comfort zone and the quiet routine of an urban hermit. The doctors had diagnosed that his cardiac functions were only at 27% and that he stood a high risk of heart failure at any moment.

According to reports, Mike had shown an extremely hearty appetite for everything he was served. He guzzled with enthusiasm not only the hospital food but even enjoyed the industrial sandwiches Moon had bought at a gas station. I suppose he didn't want to leave on an empty stomach.

My brother Mike was indeed the proverbial Stranger in a Strange Land. His story certainly deserves to be told. But perhaps not today.

11:11pm, 24 May 2023

Sunday, May 14, 2023

Universal Declaration of Peace & Harmony (reprise)

On this auspicious day,
let there be a coming together of all Star Lineages
that have contributed their diverse strands of experience and genetic heritage
unto informing the Rainbow Tribes of Earth Humanity,
and the entire spectrum of discrete lifeforms within the Biosphere,
that we collectively call
The Dance of Life.

Many of us continue to bear the residual pain of wounds and scars
sustained in the course of countless battles on all the planes,
inner and outer,
against those Fragmented Aspects of Our Greater Selves
that would not recognize and acknowledge
the Freedom and Integrity of our Sovereign Beings,
as Beloved Offspring of the Primordial Mother and Father -
indeed Prime Creator Source itself -
through all the stages of Cosmic Evolution,
conscious and otherwise,
voluntary or involuntary.

We have witnessed the grievous animosity and antagonism,
carried over within the molecular memory banks,
of warring factions across the Aeons:
between the Reptilians and the Primates;
between those of Sirian tutelage and those of the Pleiadian;
the Children of the One and the Sons of Belial;
Elohim and Nefilim;
Dark Lords and Jedi Knights;
Arcturian Emissaries and Emanations of the Orion Light Council;
Aldebaranian and Betelgeusian; Procyonian and Fomalhautian;
Rigelian and Aetherian; Martian and Venusian; Jupiterian and Saturnian;
Galactic Federation and Intergalactic Guardian Alliance;
Jews and Gentiles; Christians and Moslems; Hindus and Buddhists;
Palestinian and Israeli; Catholic and Protestant; Cowboys and Indians;
humanoid and insectoid; cuboid and spheroid;
Dreamtimers and Machinetimers;
Leftists and Rightists; Centrists and Dentists and Mentists and Adventists;
Wheelers and Dealers and Healers and Feelers;
and we hereby declare that


I refer specifically to the powerful imprint of the Tragedy of Avalon,
wherein the New Ways supplanted the Old through Force of Arms,
indeed, at swordpoint and on pain of excruciating death,
and wherein the Ancient Magick was driven from the Blessed Isles
by Slayers of Dragons bearing the Cross of Oppression,
instigated by the Elohim in the name of the Tetragrammaton, IHVH.

And all who had dedicated their lives in service to the ancient Pendragon bloodline
were reduced in status and cast out to perish in obscurity,
wandering the face of the Earth in disguise,
hiding their Druidic wisdom in riddles and childish rhymes.

It is time now to let these old wounds heal:
to remember the rĂ´les we each played out, the dire oaths we swore -
that cruel injustice be avenged, the high and mighty brought low,
and the forgotten and forsaken once again be hailed as heroes and heroines,
and exalted.

Do you remember the stories of glory and of sacrifice,
the defeats and victories, the love triangles and tragic romances,
the secret alliances and desperate betrayals,
we have each played out in the Holographic Hell
that is even now fading away like a nightmare
upon our Awakening?


and be restored, now and forever, unto Wholeness and Harmony,
that we may all sing and dance and laugh and love one another
in innocence and purity, without armor or masks,
in the Rose Garden that the
Glorious House of Love

the UNITY in COMMUNITY, the ALL-ONE-ness in ALONE,
let us honor even the PIG within us that dwells in the STY of Hone-STY...

so that the EARTH-HEART we call H.O.M.E.
will once again reveal her True Beauty as the Lady Melina -
and our Beloved Planet shall once more flow
with sweet HONE-st-Y and the MILK of Human Kindness.

Let there be no farther or "Father" di-VISION
in the EYE or "I" that is SINGLE -
or div-IS-ion in our molecular IS-ness! 

With All-Encompassing & Deep-Healing Love,
Antares Maitreya

Two Faces of Our One Face

[First posted 7 September 2012, reposted 3 December 2015, 2 November 2016 
& 24 January 2021