Friday, December 23, 2016

The Question of 'Daulat' ~ and the Truth shall set you free! (repost)

M. Bakri Musa
M. Bakri Musa recently posted the first part of an in-depth review of a very significant book by Zaid Ibrahim which candidly and lucidly discusses the tradition of royalty (and the quasi-religious mystique surrounding it) vis-a-vis the Malaysian Constitution.

Zaid's book is titled Ampun Tuanku: A Brief Guide to Constitutional Government and it was published on 25 June 2012 under his own imprint, ZI Publications. Interestingly, the work is 256 pages long, coinciding with its launch date of 25th June. Is there a numerological significance here?

For a start, 2+5+6 = 13 and 13 symbolizes death and rebirth in the Tarot. The Mayan calendar favors the female 13-moon cycle (women menstruate 13 times a year). But before I get carried away on a tangent, let's quote a section of Bakri Musa's latest blogpost, pointedly headlined "The Sultans' Daulat is a Myth":

As a youngster in 1960 I had secured for myself a commanding view high atop a coconut tree to watch the funeral procession of the first King, Tuanku Abdul Rahman. My smug demonstration of my perched position drew the attention of the village elders below. They were none too pleased and immediately ordered me down. “Sultans have daulat,” they admonished, “you cannot be above them.” Apparently even dead sultans maintained their daulat. I did not dare challenge my elders as to what would happen once the king was buried; then we all would be above him. To put things in perspective, this attribution of special or divine powers to rulers is not unique to Malay culture. The ancient Chinese Emperors too had their Tianming, Mandate from Heaven. That however, was not enough to protect them.


Zaid Ibrahim
Even though it has deep roots in Malay society, this daulat thing is a myth. The Japanese, despite their own “Sun Goddess” tradition, had no difficulty disabusing Malay rajas and their subjects of this myth. The surprise was not how quickly the sultans lost their power and prestige, or how quickly they adapted to their new plebeian status during the Japanese Occupation, rather how quickly the Malay masses accepted this new reality of their rajas being ordinary mortals sans daulat.

Only days before the Japanese landed, any Malay peasant who perchance made eye contact with his sultan, may Allah have mercy on him for the sultan certainly would not. When the Japanese took over, those rajas had to scramble with the other villagers for what few fish there were in the river and what scarce mushrooms they could scrape in the jungle. Nobody was bothered with or took heed of the daulat thing. So much for it being deeply entrenched in our culture!


To pursue my point, had the Malayan Union succeeded, our sultans today would have been all tanjak (ceremonial weapon) and desta (headgear); they would have as much status and power as the Sultan of Sulu. 

Across the Strait of Malacca, hitherto Malay sultans are now reduced to ordinary citizens. They and their society are none the worse for that.

[Read the rest here.]

Thinkers like Zaid Ibrahim and Bakri Musa represent the cutting edge of the evolving Malay psyche. Having broken free from the totem and taboo of their own upbringing - their cultural and social tempurungs, as it were - they are poised to articulate a rational, more enlightened perspective, thus showing the way forward for their less liberated compatriots.

In effect, Zaid's latest book - and Bakri Musa's learned commentary on it - are valiant attempts to demystify what has long been shrouded in quasi-religious or mystical ritualism, in effect, a residual form of superstitious awe surrounding the concept of royalty itself. They are among a handful of well-educated, clear-headed, eloquent writers who have done the unthinkable by sneaking a peek behind the stage curtains and exposing the elaborate machinery installed by wily wizards to reinforce a deeply entrenched tribal belief that God rules on earth through the ancient institution of monarchy.


For that is literally how monarchs came to be revered and even worshiped in every culture you find on earth. It begins with a visionary leader - it could be a wizard or warlord or both - proclaiming that God rules through him (or, more rarely, her). Over time, this sentiment is restated as "I rule on God's behalf." Fast-forward a few generations, and it is reduced to, simply: "I rule!"

In historical times, the ruler is often confronted with the frightening prospect of being assassinated (as in the case of Julius Caesar and many other emperors), in which event his successor (especially if young and inexperienced) is turned into a puppet king, controlled by grand viziers, senior courtiers and palace officials.

What Mahathir accomplished with his constitutional amendments of 1983 and 1993 was to effectively castrate the monarchy in Malaysia, making it essentially a ceremonial institution - purely symbolic and without political clout. To appease the Sultans, they were encouraged to engage in busyness and offered lucrative contracts which they could then farm out to professional contractors - in the process earning fat commissions to support their extravagant lifestyles. Every so often they would be put on public display as living symbols of national unity; but, over time, their roles were further reduced to "defenders of the faith" and, by extension, emblems of tribal supremacy.

In classifying the Sultans' daulat as "a myth," what Bakri implies is that their hereditary power is not grounded in reality - existing only as an idea in the popular mind. This again suggests that Zaid Ibrahim and Bakri Musa are contemporary thinkers well-versed in logical deduction, analysis, and empiricism. To such minds the word "myth" carries negative connotations: anything mythical, as such, bears greater resemblance to fiction rather than fact.

From the cosmomythological viewpoint, cold facts and bare figures serve only as a reference, as a navigational tool; they are no substitute for the multidimensional complexity of life itself, and the myriad stories that constitute the life of each nation.

It is akin to proclaiming that the divinity of Jesus is a myth. Those who have been raised in a religious tradition that deifies the personality of Jesus the Christ will, most likely, feel offended, if not threatened.

My own take on the question of royalty - in general terms, without limiting the discussion to the constitutional monarchy in Malaysia - is that it certainly helps to zoom out and view the advent of monarchism in a wider historical and mythological framework.


This doesn't take us very far back in time - at most six or seven thousand years. From the Sumerian creation epic Enuma Elish (meaning, literally, "when the gods walked the earth"), we learn that the first monarchs were actually the hybrid offspring of theogamous affairs between gods and human priestesses. Over time, even goddesses were tempted by the heady appeal of mortal flesh: the goddess Ninsun, consort of Lugalbanda, had a fling with an Adapa (a human high priest) named Kullab - and thus Gilgamesh, King of Uruk, was born two-thirds divine and one-third mortal.

But were the Sumerian gods and goddesses truly "divine"? Or were they, in fact, representatives of a more advanced civilization - one among many that had mastered interstellar space and non-linear time - and were embarked on the systematic colonization of remote life-supporting ecosystems?

Even so, what constitutes "divinity" remains unanswered. The word "divine" has its etymology in the Old French (12th century) word devin and perhaps the older Latin term divus - and its origins can be traced to the earlier Sanskrit (1700 BCE) deva (male) and devi (female) - meaning deity. However, in the Buddhist teachings, a deva is defined as "one of many different types of non-human beings who share the characteristics of being more powerful, longer-lived, and, in general, living more contentedly than the average human being."

Jesus and Krishna (courtesy of Arjuna Zbycho)

Most esoteric teachings hint at the distinct possibility that as humans evolve spiritually, they gain access to a vaster range of frequencies. As each soul attains self-mastery. it becomes reintegrated with multidimensional aspects of itself, ultimately attaining to Wholeness (or Holiness). Such Master Souls are said to occasionally volunteer their services in dense, benighted zones wherein they may be perceived as devas and devis offering inspiration and guidance from a safe distance - or else they may opt to physically incarnate as mortals, bravely and voluntarily taking on the trials and tribulations of fleshly existence.

As "heavenly emissaries" or avatars, it is only too easy to succumb to temporary amnesia and begin to get addicted to the euphoria of mass adulation. One doesn't need to incarnate as a god or goddess - even as a pop star or movie queen like Michael Jackson or Marilyn Monroe, the pressures of massive popularity and excessive fame can weigh heavily on the most evolved souls.

Arrogance and, ultimately, contempt for the Great Unwashed inevitably sets in - and even the best of intentions will not insulate us from spiritual entropy - turning dark from despair and succumbing to destructive tendencies. Hence the Fallen Angel metaphor which can be applied to anyone of noble birth who gets ensnared by the density and dimness of the manifest world, and becomes feral, turning predator instead of liberator, tormentor instead of mentor.

Tennyson's classic poem, The Lotos-Eaters, graphically describes a major occupational hazard of adventurism and the empire-building impulse. In Australia this phenomenon is known as "going troppo"... succumbing to the tropical heat and behaving erratically, even self-destructively. One easily gives in to spiritual lassitude and decadence - and this is more or less what happened to the remote descendants of the original Anunnaki bloodlines - those with claim to a bigger proportion of superhuman DNA, inherited from the Sky Gods.

Many of the royal houses in Malaysia (particularly those with Minangkabau roots) claim descent from Alexander the Great (whom they call Iskandar Zulkarnain). Who knows if this is true, but Alexander himself was the offspring of the Macedonian King Philip II and his fourth wife Olympias. His birth was preceded by omens, suggesting that his true father was Zeus, the supreme Olympian god.

My contention is simply this: enlightenment, illumination, nobility, divinity are words that describe software upgrades.

In the very early stages of planetary colonization, the extraterrestrial bloodlines took great pains to maintain genetic purity - and that's why incest was prescribed among those of exalted genealogy. Among ancient Egyptian royals, brother-sister marriages were common; and in more than one instance, mothers were known to marry their own sons, giving rise to the vulgar expression "motherfucker"). Only much later did incest become proscribed, when the "divine" gene pool got too diluted, resulting in too many deformities.

At some juncture, it became apparent that superior intellect and physical prowess were not transmitted exclusively through the chromosomes; that a powerful influence - for example, a new belief system or school of thought - could also replicate itself through empathetic resonance.

In effect, the genetic offspring of an aristocratic marriage will not always inherit the desired traits; often, especially among overly incestuous bloodlines, a dramatic degeneracy occurs. The child of a peasant, if exposed to uplifting influences - say, he or she hears an inspiring story retold by an itinerant troubadour at a tender age - can mutate unpredictably and lay claim to an entirely unexpected destiny, that of a cult hero, perhaps.

In other words, ideas are akin to free-floating cultural memes - and anyone who happens to be paying attention can download these ideas and experience a radical software upgrade. This is completely borne out by the paradigm-shifting discoveries of the late great mathematician, Benoit Mandelbrot - who presented the world with fractal geometry, which in turn led to cutting-edge speculation about the holographic nature of all reality.


What this ultimately means is: the traditional notion of hierarchy is entirely illusory. No single entity can legitimately claim to be superior or inferior to any other entity. Each entity is simultaneously unique and universal - just as no two snowflakes or sets of fingerprints are identical.

Indeed, every single one of us is an integral component of the whole in an electromagnetic spectrum of infinite possibilities. The caste system, for instance, was unfairly favorable to an elite Brahmin priesthood - and it was purely in their own self-interest that they conspired to propagate this erroneous view of reality down the generations, effectively exploiting and enslaving billions.

Anyone can, as I did many years ago, stumble upon the realization that each of us has the sacred duty to reclaim our individual sovereignty, dignity, integrity, royalty and divinity. By so doing we attain to self-mastery - which means we regain control of our own destiny as autonomous, free entities in a beautifully and perfectly anarchic universe. (Anarchic actually means "free of judgment and external rules" because the word Archon refers to a judge or ruler).

The true Master is master only of himself or herself - not of other sovereign entities. When this definition of Master is reinstated within our everyday consciousness, the concept of Slavery will be limited to the domain of electrical engineering, wherein the master-slave configuration applies only to current regulation.

Bakri Musa concludes his essay with this bold declaration:

"In a democracy, daulat (sovereignty) resides with the people, not the rajas. Our constitution is clear on that point, as Zaid repeatedly reminds us. We must constantly defend this principle lest it be eroded."

I am in wholehearted agreement, even though we approach the subject from wildly different perspectives.

M. BAKRI MUSA: THE SULTANS' DAULAT IS A MYTH (PART 2)

BOOK REVIEW: ZAID IBRAHIM'S AMPUN TUANKU

[First posted 30 August 2012. Reposted 29 November 2014 & 25 June 2015]






2 comments:

Daniel Oon Swee Lee said...

You Chinese people worked so very hard, laboured day and night, toiled like kuli, (with blood, sweat and tears) just to pay taxes, cukai pintu, cukai tanah and renew licences, to the Ruling Elite Evil UMNO-BN Regime for the past 50 odd oppressive, dictatorial & tyrannical years! (Especially 22 years under Dictator Maha-Zalim Dr.M!)


Now what did the UMNO-BN Govt rewarded you Chinese people? The ever increasing influx of Pendatang Haram's! These Pendatang Haram's are awarded Blue IC MyKad with the criteria that they enroll as UMNO members and MUST be converted to Islam!

On Polling Day GE-13 , these Pendatang Haram's (Indians, Indonesians, Bangaladeshis, Myanmese, Africans, etc) will be queing-up standing next in-line beside you 2nd-Class citizens, with the same rights to vote the Govt that have granted them illegally the licence (MyKad) to be a citizen of Malaysial!


Ultimately the day will come when these Pendatang Haram's will be appointed as MP's in Parliament, and the Bangla's and Indons will be the NEW Raja-Raja/Sultans & of coarse the NEW King/Agung will be an African!


http://www.loyarburok.com/2011/12/13/anything-umnobn-abu-view/

Amadeus B.V 勇瑜 said...

I enjoy reading your post. Very good English. Yes a holographic nature of reality.