Thursday, December 31, 2015

2016 ~ Extraordinary in every way!


MAY YOUR JOYS INCREASE &
YOUR SORROWS CEASE
IN THIS MOST EXTRAORDINARY YEAR
2016


Completing the Old for A New Beginning...


Thursday, December 24, 2015

A terribly Messy Kerismas for Umno (revisited)



Umno is still trying to pin the blame for the bloody 13 May 1969 episode on the DAP (in other words, the Chinese). Notwithstanding widespread reports that machete-wielding, black-clad berserkers donning red headbands were brought in and out of Selangor in army and police field force lorries, there is no doubt that the authorities could have ended the violence within 48 hours - instead of allowing the carnage and tension to drag on for weeks - if they had had the political will to do so...

A few years years ago a young friend shared with me his unease about the next general election. "I have a gut feeling Pakatan Rakyat will win and Umno will stir up trouble," he said.

If he was hoping to get some reassurance from me that nothing so horrific could possibly happen, he would have been disappointed. My response was that the signs were clear - Umno knows it has reached the end of the line, but it refuses to get off the gravy train.

Fat man in a red suit not always Santa Claus!
Ever since Razak Hussein took over the reins from Tunku Abdul Rahman in the grim aftermath of May 13, Umno has been gorging itself off the fat of the land, riding on the NEP and an outrageous array of Ketuanan Melayu (Malay Supremacy) policies.

No need to go over soggy, rank-smelling ground. Umno's sins are legion, and an inordinate proportion were obviously perpetrated under Mahathir Mohamad's 22-year-tenure. Umno should have died and been buried in February 1988 - but Mahathir was way too ruthless and nipped in the bud an attempt by two former prime ministers to establish an "Umno Malaysia" without him.

It was all about the money then - and even more so now. When so much money is involved, the worst traits tend to emerge. Umno in general - and Najib Razak in particular - are in dire straits. They can see the bold graffiti on the wall: the younger, street-savvier generation of Malays are no longer inclined to be whipped into a mindless frenzy by issues of race, religion and royalty. They are far more interested in freedom and social justice.

Umno's support base has been reduced to just a small band of rowdies and bullies - many of them moonlighting as policemen and goons-for-hire. Even its rural voter base of FELDA settlers can no longer be taken for granted - their children are beginning to wake up to the fact that they have been systematically robbed by smooth-talking Umno warlords who claim to have the Malays' interests at heart.

Is the army behind Umno? It's safe to say that the top brass are behind Najib. As defence minister for two terms, Najib had ample opportunity to line the pockets of high-ranking officers and make sure their retirement benefits were well taken care of. However, if the army is called out in the event of a national emergency, the rank-and-file troops may be disinclined to open fire on multiracial crowds for fear of injuring their own friends and relatives.

Alice slays the Jabberwocky of race-based politics
The Bersih 2.0 Rally for free and fair elections put to rest the specter of May 13.

That was its greatest achievement. After that pivotal date, Malaysians are uniting against corruption, social injustice, and demanding their civil liberties. While Umno and its fascist offshoots Perkasa, Isma, Pekida, (and a purulent plethora of ostensibly "Islamic" agencies like Jakim and Jais) remain mired in the ugly rhetoric of race, religion and royalty, everybody else has moved on.

So, even if Umno attempts to revive its May 13 scenario after it loses the next election, it can only send a few hundred rempit into the streets to create an atmosphere of tension. Nobody else will be provoked to join the fray. You can't start a full-scale "race riot" without participants. What can the rempit do except burn a few cars and overturn some trash cans?

Everyone who isn't still in a cultural trance or living beneath a coconut shell knows what sort of dirty tricks Umno is capable of and is unlikely to fall for any race-based sandiwara  it attempts to stage, post GE14. Even if Umno's armed thugs manage to inflict injury on a few hapless bystanders - the rest of the population will take cover and refrain from retaliating. How long can a bunch of mindless thugs roam the empty streets before they tire of their aimless rampage?

The SupremeTransformer, 1Nazjib
Sure, Najib can twist the Agong's arm and declare a national emergency... but such a desperate ploy can only backfire on his corrupt regime. No nation can maintain a state of emergency for more than a few weeks. And then what?

Without people going about their everyday business, everything grinds to a halt. This would be akin to a massive hartal (general strike) which some of us have been trying to organize - only this time the hartal would be thrust upon us by an evil and massively unpopular regime that has just lost an election. Well, if such a situation arises, it would only prove beyond any shadow of doubt that Umno/BN has lost its legitimacy - and even if it seizes this opportunity to arrest and imprison all Opposition leaders, activists and bloggers, it will only be signing its own death warrant.

So let's put it this way: should we continue voting Umno/BN just because we fear the dire consequences if we don't? Or should we pit our fearlessness against Umno/BN's fear? 

I'm willing to concede that we may have to embark on a national reconciliation exercise - the way it was done in South Africa during the tenure of F.W. de Klerk, when many police officers received formal pardons in exchange for their confessions and corrupt ministers were let off if they agreed to return a fair percentage of their ill-gotten gains to the national treasury.

CHEERS! HERE'S TO A BRAND NEW BEGINNING IN 2016!
Cartoon by Edward Koren/New York Times
[First posted 24 December 2011. Reposted 24 December 2013 & 24 December 2014]



Friday, December 18, 2015

Words of Wisdom for the Festive Season (reprise)




"Civilizations, like the penis, rise and fall, and when the towers and the battlements crumble into the earth, they return to the embrace of the Great Mother." ~ William Irwin Thompson

"I don't make jokes. I just watch the government and report the facts." - Will Rogers
"I remain one thing and one thing only - and that is a CLOWN. It places me on a far higher plane than any POLITICIAN." ~ Charles Chaplin


"THE ONLY GOOD GOVERNMENT IS A BAD ONE... 

IN A HELL OF A FRIGHT." ~ Joyce Cary

I don't agree, Joyce. I believe the only acceptable government is SELF-GOVERNMENT. But for that to happen, the entire population must first derobotize itself. That will take a bit of time. As a stopgap measure, a less arrogant, more approachable and democratic Pakatan Rakyat government led by Anwar Ibrahim or Wan Azizah will serve us nicely! :-) ~ Antares




[From The Things They Say About Politicians, compiled by K. Das; illustrated by Antares, 1987. First published 18 September 2009, reposted 25 December 2011]


Sunday, November 22, 2015

Revealed: The Men Who Killed JFK (repost)


The Last Confession Of E. Howard Hunt - US government/CIA team murdered JFK

By Larry Chin
Online Journal Associate Editor
Rolling Stone
4-4-7

The April 5 issue of Rolling Stone features the deathbed confession of CIA operative and key Bay of Pigs/Watergate/Nixon administration figure E. Howard Hunt, The Last Confession of E. Howard Hunt by Erik Hedegaard. This piece is significant not only for its exploration of Hunt, but for breakthrough information that appears to thoroughly corroborate the work of key John F. Kennedy assassination researchers and historians.

Who killed JFK?

According to Hunt's confession, which was taken by his son, St. John ("Saint") Hunt, over the course of many personal and carefully planned father-son meetings, the following individuals were among the key participants:

Lyndon B. Johnson: LBJ, whose own career was assisted by JFK nemesis J. Edgar Hoover (FBI), gave the orders to a CIA-led hit team, and helped guide the Warren Commission/lone gunman cover-up.

Cord Meyer
: CIA agent, architect of the Operation Mockingbird disinformation apparatus, and husband of Mary Meyer (who had an affair with JFK).

David Atlee Philips
: CIA and Bay of Pigs veteran. Recruited William Harvey (CIA) and Cuban exile militant Antonio Veciana.

William Harvey: CIA and Bay of Pigs veteran. Connected to Mafia figures Santos Trafficante and Sam Giancana.

Antonio Veciana: Cuban exile, founder of CIA-backed Alpha 66.

Frank Sturgis: CIA operative, mercenary, Bay of Pigs veteran, and later Watergate figure.

David Morales: CIA hit man, Bay of Pigs veteran. Morales was also a figure involved with the assassination of Robert F. Kennedy.

Lucien Sarti: Corsican assassin and drug trafficker, possible "French gunman," Grassy Knoll (second) shooter.

Would Hunt continue to tell lies on his deathbed? Perhaps. Would Hunt tell a final tall story or two, to protect himself, or perhaps deal one final slap in the face to the US government (which made him a fall guy for Watergate)? Yes. Would Hunt hide the involvement of certain individuals to whom he remained loyal, including people who are still alive? Certainly. Anything from an operative like Hunt can only be accepted with caution and healthy skepticism.

Nevertheless, Hunt's scenario has the ring of truth.


Each of the named names are well-known CIA and CIA-linked players exposed by many researchers and historians who have detailed the enduring connection from the Bay of Pigs and the Dallas hit to Watergate and Iran-Contra.

The Hunt confession vindicates generations of historians, researchers and whistleblowers who have given their lives and careers to expose the truth about Dealey Plaza. While there are too many to name, they include, but are not limited to (and in no particular order): Jim Garrison, Mark Lane, Fletcher Prouty, Josiah Thompson, Carl Oglesby, Peter Dale Scott, Anthony Summers, Robert Groden, Victor Marchetti, David Lifton, Harrison Livingstone, Michael Canfield, A.J. Weberman, Sylvia Meagher, William Turner, Jim Marrs, Pete Brewton, John Newman, Philip Melanson, Hal Verb, Mae Brussell, Harold Weisberg, Oliver Stone, Mike Ruppert and Dan Hopsicker, Jim diEugenio and Linda Pease.

Meanwhile, the criminal deceptions of the US government and its corporate media, the Warren Commission, and the dirty work of cover-up specialists such as Gerald Posner and Mark Fuhrman, and the legions of JFK assassination revisionist/theorists, deserve a final rebuke, and eternal scorn.

Highlighting Hunt's role

Although the Rolling Stone piece does not address it, the Hunt confession directly corroborates two classic investigations that previously exposed the role of Hunt. They are Mark Lane's Plausible Denial and Michael Canfield/A.J. Weberman's Coup D'Etat in America. Lane's book details how he took Hunt to court, and won a libel suit, essentially proving that the CIA murdered JFK, and that Hunt lied about his whereabouts. The investigation of Canfield and Weberman identified Hunt and Frank Sturgis as two of the three "tramps" arrested at Dealey Plaza.

Time has only made these investigations more relevant. More than ever, their books, and those of the JFK historians and researchers above listed, deserve to be found, read and studied.

Hunt to Nixon to Bush

The Rolling Stone piece fails to go after the roles of Richard Nixon and George Herbert Walker Bush. But the Hunt confession, if accurate, leads directly to them, to their lifelong associates, and all the way to the present George W. Bush administration.

The Dallas-Watergate-Iran-Contra connection has been thoroughly documented by the key JFK researchers, and in particular, in the work of Peter Dale Scott, one of the very first to show the deep political continuity across three decades. Daniel Hopsicker's Barry and the Boys goes into even more detail on the players.

Consider the career of George H.W. Bush. He was a Texas oilman (Zapata Oil) and a CIA operative, involved with the Bay of Pigs. Bush's name was found in the papers of George DeMohrenschildt, one of Lee Harvey Oswald's CIA handlers. As documented by Pete Brewton, author of The Mafia, the CIA and George Bush, Bush was deeply connected with a small circle of Texas elites tied to the CIA and the Mafia, as well as the Florida-based CIA/anti-Casto Cuban exile/ Mafia milieu As Richard Nixon's hand-picked Republican National Committee chairman, and later as CIA director, Bush constantly covered-up and stonewalled for his boss about Watergate, which itself (by the admission of Frank Sturgis and others) was a cover-up of the JFK assassination.

Tracking any of the individual CIA operatives involved with the Bay of Pigs, it is impossible to ignore or deny direct connections to George H.W. Bush and his crime family, across the Kennedy assassinations, covert operations in Indochina and, later, Latin America.

Beyond any reasonable doubt, the US government murdered John F. Kennedy. There are people still alive today who were involved directly and indirectly implicated. Some are probably even serving in positions of high influence. Some still have never been identified or touched.

All of these individuals still need to be pursued, exposed, and brought to justice.

Copyright © 1998-2007 Online Journal

[Thanks to Dave Blackman, who forwarded the Rense.com report!]

Two Members of the Bush Crime Family: George W and George H.W. (Grandpa Prescott Bush co-founded the infamous Skull & Bones Society and laundered Nazi money through his bank during WWII)

[First posted 6 April 2007]

Monday, November 9, 2015

CLEARING THE CHANNELS

Fall of the Berlin Wall, 1989

Robert Graves
PRECISELY WHEN IT ALL STARTED is worth putting on the record. It was around 0320 hours Kuala Lumpur time, 10th November, 1989. In Berlin it would have been approximately 2020 hours, November 9th. Just about the time The Wall was being dismantled.

What happened to me and my friend Mary Maguire at that particular time could be called a transdimensional breakthrough. I know it sounds rather pompous,  considering how silly the entire exercise might appear to certain people.

What were we doing? Fooling around with a what? A ouija board. And who did you say contacted you? Robert Graves. Which Robert Graves? The famous poet, scholar and author? The man who wrote The White Goddess and I, Claudius and Claudius the God?

Ha ha, nice try.


Look, I'm not in the habit of attending seances, reading tea leaves, or playing with ouija boards. And until this thing happened I didn't even know who Robert Graves was. Nor had I read any of his books or poems, believe it or not.

Hmmmm...

Arthur Koestler
That's a perfectly understandable response. This is the Age of the Mighty Microchip. We don’t burn witches anymore. The Ghost In The Machine? Isn't that the name of a Police album? Well, it's also the title of an Arthur Koestler book I never got round to reading. But I always liked the image it conjured. As a young man I was greatly stimulated by Koestler. When he turned, in his later years, to parapsychological research I was pleased. Here was an intellect of undeniable probity and precision lending itself to serious investigation of the more mystical areas of metaphysics. It could only signal one thing: that the mind of contemporary man was undergoing a shift from the red end of the energy spectrum to the blue. In Koestler's own terms: from the Commissar back to the Yogi.

Events in Europe since November 1989 have borne out this spectrum shift. Witness the dramatic transfiguration of the sociopolitical status quo in what used to be called the Soviet bloc. For humanity as a whole, however, the blue-shift toward spiritual reintegration has not been progressing smoothly. The collective consciousness of most industrial nations remains stubbornly mired in the intellectual materialism that has engendered varying degrees of concealed totalitarianism. In far too many instances the primitive hostility and obscurantism which springs from Fear still rules the imaginations of influential men and women who rule the hearts and minds of entire populations.

Now you may ask: what has this to do with ouija boards and posthumous dialogues with famous poets?

I have long been convinced that all brutishness, greed, malice and deceit stem from assorted fears - and all fears ultimately arise from Fear of the Unknown. And the Ultimate Unknown is Death.


The “Godfearing" fear God's punishment: everlasting death. In view of this I have - like any civilized soul - assiduously practised the overcoming of my own thanatophobia. My fear of death, in other words.

But it is one thing to confront the evident inevitability of physical death on a purely conceptual level - and quite another to find yourself enjoying a cup of tea and a friendly chat with someone who allegedly expired several years ago. Anyone who has experienced something like this stands a good chance of acquiring fearlessness.

Let me try and explain how these transdimensional dialogues with "Robert Graves"* came about. When "Robert" broke through on the ouija board he seemed to have been drawn to the scene by Mary's presence. Before the session with the board Mary had been reclining on a couch. "Robert" mentioned that she had reminded him of someone he used to know, someone named Eddie: a pensive and languid lad of 19 who - heartbroken with jealousy - had drowned himself in a pond.

"Robert" also reported that he was attracted to my thought-field which he described as "friendly." After about an hour of conversing via the board (with astonishing fluency, I must add) I intuited that Mary and "Robert" were sufficiently attuned to one another's mental frequency for her to attempt direct channeling with pen and paper.

Robert Graves with his muse in Deya, Mallorca 
Mary had had no prior experience with the process called automatic writing (I personally prefer the term spontaneous writing) – but she took to it with remarkable ease. Looking over her shoulder as she worked, I was struck by her aura of secretarial efficiency. The erratic spelling and non-existent punctuation were all hers - but the substance and syntax were clearly emanating from a mysterious source. Whenever I wanted to comment on something or ask a question, I would verbalize it as if addressing a presence in the room. I also tried directing questions at "Robert" telepathically - but the results were unpredictable and inconsistent. Later, as I developed the ability to "channel" I found it unnecessary to vocalize my thoughts and questions.

My own initial attempts at channeling were a little "choppy" till I managed to relax completely and suspend all disbelief. The flow became smoother as I lost my self-consciousness and stopped wondering how much of it was "me." It's interesting to note that after "Robert" made the transition to an expanded frequency range I gradually took on Mary's role of "scribe"`and began to perform spontaneous writing exercises with greater regularity, to keep my neural pathways open.

Spontaneous writing is not unlike keeping a diary - but here the emphasis is on one's inner life. The act of opening the notebook and uncapping my pen seems to trigger a special circuit that plugs me into Inspiration at its source.

Perhaps it's a way of transmuting the contents of the sub- and superconscious into everyday Consciousness. In any case the process of letting "strange” signals flow through my brain and onto paper teaches me not to take the limits of my egoic existence too seriously.

I must include three other observations: (i) a degree of skill with translating thought into language definitely helps and both Mary and myself can lay claim to being writers of one species or another; (ii) both of us have dabbled in theater and might therefore be described as empathetic by temperament; (iii) during the first encounter with "Robert" we had both been psychically primed by a few cups of strong tea laced with the juice of psilocybin mushrooms.**

Our experience of euphoria and heightened awareness lasted several weeks beyond the initial contact with "Robert". I first began to feel the gravity of mundane reality again after witnessing newsreels of the carnage in Romania on Christmas Eve.


Robert Graves in his 50s
THE ABILITY TO CHANNEL is a faculty inherent in everyone, though certain types of individuals seem more predisposed to developing their sensitivity as mediums. Poets, composers, dancers, writers, sculptors, painters, and orators have traditionally acknowledged their personal daemons and muses. The same gift of inspiration has also manifested itself in the lives of many scientific geniuses. Scriptures have been revealed by similar process through the agency of individuals with specialized neural pathways. What's truly surprising, therefore, is that people seem to have grown so grossly unmindful of their spiritual links to all the other dimensions of being. If heightened awareness leads to greater awakeness then a huge percentage of the human race is fast asleep. Asleep to its own divine origin and destiny, to its own true potential.

So where the hell is it all coming from?

Bearing in mind that any working model of Reality can at best be considered a tool to help us attain some conscious mastery of our lives, let's examine the arcane teaching that Human Experience is essentially a 7-dimensional affair. And to simplify things let's call these dimensions "levels" - or frequency bands.

Lower frequencies generate greater apparent mass or solidity. So we may visualize the different levels as a series of "kingdoms" of ascending sublimity: mineral, vegetable, animal, elemental, mental, archangelic, deific. The "higher" levels incorporate and complement the "lower" and vice versa. Where does the human being fit in? It varies from one individual to another. The fully realized individual functions consciously on all seven levels. The vast majority of humans, however, appear to be enmeshed in the specific dramas of Levels 3, 4 and 5.

Level 3 is the physical plane, the animal being with its amazing sensory structures. What we call 3-dimensional reality, the tangible world.


Level 4 is the elemental (or astral) plane where the sense of space does not exist (or if it does, it's highly elastic): this is where we "go" in our dreams and in states of death or deep trance. Devas, demons, and disembodied souls abound on Level 4. Thought-forms of limited volition abide in this timeless Twilight Zone that could well be an aspect of Time itself.

The realm of pure thought - Level 5 - is where the Muses live. This is where the Intellect originates, where the Imagination becomes articulate. Five is the firmament of Mind where Ideas float like clouds.


It is the sacred grove where the Poet trysts with his Beloved and is consumed by Eternity. When Mary and I first met "Robert Graves" (a well-named ghost, I had quipped) the man had been disincarnate for nearly four years, earthtime. The Poet was one at last with his White Goddess and "Robert" had himself become a full-fledged Muse.

On Level 6 the ego-personality diffuses into the perfect principle of cosmic love, compassion, and healing light. Here the concept of gender is irrelevant. Six is rightly called the archangelic realm, for it is through archangelic action that the lower kingdoms are sustained. In the myth of Lucifer/Prometheus the Archangel/Titan is erroneously said to have "fallen from Grace"; in truth the Bringer of Light voluntarily forswears Godhood in order to rescue other sentient souls trapped in the lower realms.***

Similarly, the emotive force of the Christ initiation lies in the idea of a voluntary fall, crucifixion, resurrection and return to the Godhead which, for us, is the Absolute Reality of Level 7. In effect "where the hell it's all coming from" is wholly relative to what level of awareness we’re functioning at.


Robert Graves in his 60s
"ROBERT GRAVES" developed into a splendid transdimensional conundrum for us. Having introduced himself as Mary's platonic lover from her previous life he went on to become my spirit friend from Level 5 - and eventually established contact with me on a heroic, archetypal and mythic level - playing Zeus to my Cronos, Castor to my Pollux, Romulus to my Remus, and so forth. Finally "Robert" extended his being onto Levels 6 and 7 and was transformed into the voice of our own infinite potential.

Eventually we were faced with a difficult decision: whether to go public with the material or limit it to a manageable circle of friends. "Robert" himself at one point expressed his indifference as to the outcome of our sessions. He said he trusted us with the material. We toyed with the idea of publishing anonymously or under a pseudonym. But then why mystify what's already and always mysterious? Besides (I reminded myself) all names are ultimately meaningless. Nonetheless I've always found anonymous notes, phonecalls, tracts or reviews extremely annoying. So we see-sawed between doubt and decision for a while until one day it suddenly became very clear: the "Robert" contact had restored and reinforced my sense of purpose and given Mary a whole new perspective on her life (or rather, lives) Why couldn’t it do the same for others?

Encouraged by the open-minded interest shown by many of our friends and by the outstanding example of inspired sensitives like H.P. Blavatsky, Alice A. Bailey, Jane Roberts, Dorothy Maclean and David Spangler (to name but a few) Mary and I felt we simply had to do our bit for the Aquarian Dispensation. whereupon "Robert" waxed enthusiastic and gave us his unconditional blessings.

To Mikhail S. Gorbachev we owe a very special debt of gratitude for reminding us of the virtues of glasnost and the power we hold in our own hands for perestroika on a planetary scale.

Antares (Kit Leee)
Kuala Lumpur,
Easter Sunday, 1990

______________________________________________________________________

* Robert’s name occurs in quotes because there has thus far been no incontrovertible proof that we were in contact with the surviving intelligence of the late great poet. However, our subsequent research into Graves' life and work has only reinforced the feeling that it was him all right. In any case all names are ultimately unimportant except as a form of "station identification."

** I have myself eaten the hallucinogenic mushroom, psilocybe, a divine ambrosia in immemorial use among the Masatec Indians of Oaxaca Province, Mexico; heard the priestess invoke Tlaloc, the Mushroom-god, and seen transcendental visions. Thus I wholeheartedly agree with R. Gordon Wasson, the American discoverer of this ancient rite, that European ideas of heaven and hell may well have derived from similar mysteries. ~ Robert Graves, in his foreword to The Greek Myths, 1960

*** "The Manichaean tradition knows that the Holy Ghost is the transformed Lucifer and the dove is the transformed serpent; and that the Grail was once formed from the precious stone in the crown of Lucifer and was filled with the blood of Christ who redeems Lucifer himself." ~ Trevor Ravenscroft, The Cup of Destiny

TO BRING THE DEAD TO LIFE

by Robert Graves

To bring the dead to life
Is no great magic.
Few are wholly dead:
Blow on a dead man's embers
And a live flame will start.

Let his forgotten griefs be now,
And now his withered hopes;
Subdue your pen to his handwriting
Until it prove as natural
To sign his name as yours.

Limp as he limped,
Swear by the oaths he swore;
If he wore black, affect the same;
If he had gouty fingers,
Be yours gouty too.

Assemble tokens intimate of him -
A seal, a cloak, a pen:
Around these elements then build
A home familiar to
The greedy revenant.

So grant him life; but reckon
That the grave which housed him
May not be empty now:
You in his spotted garments
Shall yourself lie wrapped.


[First posted 23 June 2015]



Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Lost Words: Heavens to Murgatroyd! Anyone remember what this means?

We can have archaic and eat it, too.
By Richard Lederer

About a month ago, I illuminated some old expressions that have become obsolete because of the inexorable march of technology. These phrases included "Don't touch that dial," "Carbon copy," "You sound like a broken record" and "Hung out to dry." A bevy of readers have asked me to shine light on more faded words and expressions, and I am happy to oblige:

Back in the olden days we had a lot of moxie. We'd put on our best bib and tucker and straighten up and fly right. Hubba-hubba! We'd cut a rug in some juke joint and then go necking and petting and smooching and spooning and billing and cooing and pitching woo in hot rods and jalopies in some passion pit or lovers lane. Heavens to Betsy! Gee whillikers! Jumping Jehoshaphat! Holy moley! We were in like Flynn and living the life of Riley, and even a regular guy couldn't accuse us of being a knucklehead, a nincompoop or a pill. Not for all the tea in China!

Back in the olden days, life used to be swell, but when's the last time anything was swell? Swell has gone the way of beehives, pageboys and the D.A.; of spats, knickers, fedoras, poodle skirts, saddle shoes and pedal pushers. Oh, my aching back. Kilroy was here, but he isn't anymore.

Like Washington Irving's Rip Van Winkle and Kurt Vonnegut's Billy Pilgrim, we have become unstuck in time. We wake up from what surely has been just a short nap, and before we can say, I'll be a monkey's uncle! or This is a fine kettle of fish! we discover that the words we grew up with, the words that seemed omnipresent as oxygen, have vanished with scarcely a notice from our tongues and our pens and our keyboards.

Poof, poof, poof go the words of our youth, the words we've left behind. We blink, and they're gone, evanesced from the landscape and wordscape of our perception, like Mickey Mouse wristwatches, hula hoops, skate keys, candy cigarettes, little wax bottles of colored sugar water and an organ grinders monkey.

Where have all those phrases gone? Long time passing. Where have all those phrases gone? Long time ago: Pshaw. The milkman did it. Think about the starving Armenians. Bigger than a bread box. Banned in Boston. The very idea! It's your nickel. Don't forget to pull the chain. Knee high to a grasshopper. Turn-of-the-century. Iron curtain. Domino theory. Fail safe. Civil defense. Fiddlesticks! You look like the wreck of the Hesperus. Cooties. Going like sixty. I'll see you in the funny papers. Don't take any wooden nickels. Heavens to Murgatroyd! And awa-a-ay we go! Oh, my stars and garters!

It turns out there are more of these lost words and expressions than Carter had liver pills. This can be disturbing stuff, this winking out of the words of our youth, these words that lodge in our heart's deep core. But just as one never steps into the same river twice, one cannot step into the same language twice. Even as one enters, words are swept downstream into the past, forever making a different river.

We of a certain age have been blessed to live in changeful times. For a child each new word is like a shiny toy, a toy that has no age. We at the other end of the chronological arc have the advantage of remembering there are words that once did not exist and there were words that once strutted their hour upon the earthly stage and now are heard no more, except in our collective memory. It's one of the greatest advantages of aging. We can have archaic and eat it, too.

See ya later, alligator!
__________________

Richard Lederer is an American author, speaker, and teacher. He is best known for his books on the English language and on word play such as puns, oxymorons, and anagrams. 

[With thanks to Judy Mezen]


Monday, November 2, 2015

Camel or rope, still can't squeeze through! (revisited)

"And again I say to you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God." ~ Matthew 19:24

This well-known quote from the New Testament attributed to the apostle Matthew has been the subject of endless debate over the centuries. Some scholars say that the Master Yeshua (called "Jesus" by modern-day Christians) wasn't referring to a camel but to a rope. One bible study site I stumbled upon while researching this subject has this to say:









Jesus and all the Jews spoke a language called Aramaic, and the word gamla meant either a camel or a large rope, just as we have words which are spelled the same, but have different meanings. And some of the earlier translators or copyists must have taken the wrong meaning here. For no one would ever talk about a camel going through a needle's eye. But every Jewish house had several large ropes, that were used to tie bundles on the backs of men and animals.

Even in Greek the camel-rope confusion persists. The Greek word for "thick rope" is kamilos; and "camel" is kamelos. But in wasting so much breath arguing about whether the Master meant "rope" or "camel" many theologians have completely missed the point.

And the point is the Eye of the Needle. Graphically, you can visualize it as a very narrow aperture that the thread absolutely has to squeeze through if you want to do any sewing with it.

I prefer to use "more scientific" terminology by calling it the Frequency Scanner. What, you may ask, is a "frequency scanner"? The secular definition is what radio buffs would be familiar with and it has to do with identifying the source of radio transmissions by means of a vast database of terrestrial radiowave frequencies.

As I'm not a radio buff I generally go with the "spiritual" definition wherein the Frequency Scanner is what measures an individual's auric purity and molecular integrity. All of us are born with hardwired frequency scanners which we may not necessarily be aware of. Those who unconsciously use their frequency scanners to suss other people might call it "intuition" or "instinct" or "following their gut feelings."


The Eye of the Needle, therefore, is a powerful metaphor for the perfectly natural process of self-selection whereby each soul determines its own onward evolution - or otherwise. Each of us must gather all the different threads of our genetic memories and converge them into a single point, in order to penetrate the most modest of apertures - the vulva of a vestal virgin, who represents the call of the Mother of all Goddesses, to return to our divine origins in her cosmic womb and be reborn anew.

I view the soul's pilgrimage through the fields of density and complexity as the method by which the Atman (Divine Self) gathers experiential data and then rearranges it to generate coherent patterns, which often take the forms of sacred geometry. If you imagine each life as a colored thread warping and woofing through the tapestry of eternity, it's almost inevitable that you will eventually begin to perceive the grand mandala of Life Itself and experience a glorious eureka moment.


Was the Master Yeshua a closet socialist? Why such a pronounced prejudice against rich folks? When he is quoted as saying there's no way a rich man can gain entry into "the kingdom of God" - does he mean this literally? Or was it just a bad hair day for Jesus that yielded this particular injunction?

My sons-in-law are all fairly rich guys. And I consider them decent and goodhearted souls. The only essential difference between us is that they are almost entirely focused on building their businesses and ensuring their families enjoy the very best that life can offer - while I'm almost entirely focused on freeing myself from any form of busyness.

Having spent more than 50 years researching what some may call the esoteric realm, I consider myself fairly well informed about the funky stuff that goes on within the Inner Planes. However, when it comes to subjects like sports or the stock market, my understanding of these worldly matters borders on the imbecilic.

So, from my personal perspective, what the Master Yeshua actually meant by his provocative statement was simply this: those who get overly caught up in external reality will find it a lot harder to attune to their own inner voice. If all one ever hears is the loud chattering of the marketplace, sportscasters and airheaded radio DJs, it's quite unlikely that one will ever acquire the necessary neural acumen to break free of the artificial holographic matrix wherein our anthropocentric games of buy-and-sell and win-or-lose are being played out.

No matter how much money you may have stashed away in some offshore account, you will still end up shitting your pants when you wake up one morning to discover that Wall Street no longer exists. The Jewish brokers made off with all your cash while you were fast asleep. What those silly scammers intend to do with all their worthless currency notes not even God knows.

They could use their $50 bills for rolling tobacco, just to remind themselves that they were once loyal subjects of Rex Mundi. Or they could pile up all the currency notes and make the most extravagant bonfire in history. Or wipe their bottoms with $10 bills just to prove they are no longer obsessed with "the bottom line."


In any case, you can rest assured that money distilled from the blood, sweat and tears of countless generations of semi-conscious and mentally enslaved humans will not be accepted as legal - or illegal - tender in the kingdom of God (I prefer to use the term "heaven").

All the fang-and-claw scenarios of dog-eat-dog politicians... the feeding frenzy of cocaine-crazed remisiers... the hustle and push of insurance and snake oil salesmen... the wheelers and the dealers... prime movers and shakers... the cigar-chomping moguls and ghoulish martini-swilling financiers behind the glitter and glamor of Hollywood, Bollywood and Follywood... I'm not letting them into heaven, no way!

Not unless they clear their emotional garbage and get their auric fields clear and fragrant.

God's love is both unconditional and conditional.

(If you happen to be a fan of Richard Dawkins and don't believe in God, that's fine. I don't need you to believe in me to be whatever and whoever I am, because the only God I accept as authentic is the one I see in the mirror, and in every pair of eyes looking back at me. In any case, God is actually an atheist, like Professor Dawkins.)

"Unconditional" - in the sense that even the ones who end up in a hell of their own making are still cherished and valued as souls and will always be offered another opportunity to clean up their acts and get out of their ruts.

"Conditional" - in the sense that if you misunderstand what Mastery is all about and go about enslaving and exploiting a whole lot of other lifeforms - human and more-than-human - because you erroneously believe that's what Masters do, then you've pretty much flunked this evolutionary semester.

Or if you vehemently deny that you've just shit your pants - when everyone else in the room is holding their noses and glaring at you and pointing to that gooey brown liquid oozing from your trouser leg and onto the plush carpet - well, then I suppose we shall just have to label you another "Hisham" or "Najib" and frogmarch you to the sanitization facility where, after a thorough cleansing, you'll be given all the emotional therapy you need to qualify for rebirth as a protozoon.

And it won't cost you a penny, don't worry.

Carl Jung was fond of recounting an old ecclesiastical joke that goes like this:

Student: There were men in the olden days who saw the face of God. Why don't they see it any more?

Rabbi: Because nowadays no one can stoop so low.

[First posted 4 December 2009 & reposted 9 December 2013]



AISODONOLAH ~ another Manglish poem by Antares


Aitelyu ah, every year laif getting harder,
Not like lastaim so seemple one.
You remember ornot dat taim we all in skool
Honda Cub five hundred dollar can buy.
Now how much oridi? Five tausend over!
Becos of INGFLATION wat, dey say…
So whatever happen to INFLASI SIFAR hah?
Dis mins debladigarmen’s kempen for “Zero Ingflation”
Only add up to NUTTING pulak…
But aisodonolah…

De udder day my son come home from skool,
Say he nid computer.
Defler form one only, man,
Oridi want to so high-teck!
He say, nowdays got standard six buggers
Using word plocessor – Oi! Mamasan 2020, yutingwat!
So like a bladifoo I take de rascal to the IT Expo
And buy him two tausend linggit computer,
Summore got "Intel Inside" one.
Now defler as soon as he back from tiewshun
Oridi sitting like hunchback wid new video game: Taa-taaaa-taaaaaaang! Zoop-zooooop!
Waaah, got STEREO sound one, pulak:
CIA, James Bond and Mossad versus Al-Qaeda and Al Gore!
Arfturds I go and see how de bladi ting work...
And de ungratefoo chap, ah,
He tell me to go away!
Never gif his old man chan to play…
Aiyoh, chewren dese days ah, watusay,
Aisodonolah…

Hweeyoh, doan tok to me about TRAFFIC JAM, brudder,
See my blood pressure oridi shoot up!
Lemme arsk you ah: got so many so-call iconomicks expert,
How come dey kennot add up how much
Taim, petrol, energy and payshuns wasted
In de bladi name of Progress, hah?
And how come de Otorities seemply allow
Dose gawdam devilopers to build high-rice condo
Even where got only kampong road?
Tingking of da FUTURE, da tick-skin flers say.
WHOSE FUTURE, I arsk you? Their own lah!
Two, tree housing projek oridi can retire,
Get free condo summore…
Cheh! Aisodonolah…

You want to hear a good joke ah?
Why garmen awfis orways got Piles of Work?
Becos dose buggers sit on their fat backside all day long
Till dey all kena PILES pulak –
So dey say PILES OF WORK is Ockupayshunal Hazard lah, haha!

But now ah, I hear dey will be UPGRADED, man:
Every seevil servant will get computer and internet
Under da Smart Awfis Plan -
Mins da furniture smarter than deflers who work there lah!
Dat’s wat MULTIMEDIO SUPER CURRYPUFF is all about lah:
From Mediocracy to Mediacrazy – waffor, man?
We only arsk dem to bekum NICER HOOMIN BEANS –
No nid for all sorts of ackspensif e-kwipment lah.
Aiyoh, so many kampong steel got no paip water
Or letrickcity; nearly half da bladi pawpoolayshun
Kennot read or rait (nemmain their speling lah)…
Steel sumflers want to ackshun only,
Awfer Bill Gates CON-SULTAN JOB IN POOTRAJAYA.
Yuting we kennot awford ah?
Twenty million a month oso no ploblem, man!
But where de heck da money coming from?
Oso, where de fuck de money going?
Aisodonolah.

Tok tok tok tokkok only!
ISO dis and ISO dat,
Aisodono wat.
Everywan and Kompeni going GREEN nowdays,
Mins wat? Learn to PLAY GOLF ah?
SARS-TAIN-ABLE EVERYTING…
Including GREED.
Watudu, booshit is manure - and manure good for growth wat,
You better shurrup and main your own affairs.
Any ploblem call Gurmit or Karpal Singh lah!
But who will do our Dirty Work for us, hah,
Wen dose flers retire or die?
Aisodonolah.
Oridi everyting PRIVATIZED and PIRATIZED,
Now no more Public Sektor lor!
Survival of the Fattest, yutingwat –
Dontch know your Charles Darwin ah, brudder?
“Aiyah, CARI MAKAN lah,” some say,
But ackchwurly ah, CURI MAKAN only.
Sneak around wid bags full of LOOT,
When caught REDHANDED wid pants down
Like dat oso never get de BOOT!
Ackshun spik lauder than words, dey say,
But in dis kiasu-kiasi so-sigh-ty ah,
You tok too laud you get DETAINED;
Kip quiet only, you bin DEBRAINED…
So waffor I tok to YOU ah?
Aisodonolah.


[Written 29 January 1997; revised 4 March 2007 and 13 October 2011; doodles by Antares] 


Friday, October 23, 2015

5 Candidates for 7th Malaysian PM (updated but the list remains unchanged)

Here are my five personal choices for the next prime minister of Malaysia...


1. LATOK LAT @ Mohd Nor Khalid: With so many cartoon characters in the Cabinet, we really ought to have a master cartoonist as PM. Especially one listed among the World's Top 100 Cartoonists! I've known Lat for 45 years. He used to ride a noisy old Triumph motorcycle to work (he was on the crime desk at the NST in those days and the editors had no idea the kid could draw until they saw a feature on him in Asia Magazine). He was the only one who seemed impressed by the 450cc metallic purple 1948 BSA I owned (it had no rear shock absorbers so you can imagine how rattled I'd appear at the end of each ride).

We used to chill at a mutual friend's house in PJ, getting stoned and belting out a medley of Bob Dylan songs. A few years later some friends formed a bluegrass band called K.D. Possum & The Flying Fox and Lat joined us on lead guitar and bass (he was billed as "Nashville Slim" and he was damn good too, even crooned a couple of Johnny Cash songs occasionally).

So with Lat as PM I'd have little to worry about. I doubt he'd ever ISA or SOSMA me. The worst that could happen if I refuse to giggle at his jokes might be he'd revert to calling me by my discarded User ID. Lat has a knack of injecting so much empathy and warmth into his caricatures. Nobody is evil in Lat's world (he could even make Dr M come across as lovable). After all the badmouthing and mudslinging that's been raging in local politics, Lat as PM would bring about genuine muhibbah and transform us all into true Malaysians.



2. SUFIAH YUSOF: Now this sexy young lady might be just what we need to instill a bit of discipline into our law enforcement thugs and bottom-pinching, child-molesting ministers. I know Sufiah charges £130 an hour for her services - which works out to £31,200 a month (or RM204,672). But she'd be worth every penny if she could whip the entire Cabinet into shape and turn civil servants into fine, upstanding members of society.

A former child prodigy in mathematics, Sufiah would be outstanding as finance minister too. In fact, with her undisputed multi-tasking skills, she could take over all the ministerial portfolios, thereby freeing the other MPs from tedious routine and allowing them the opportunity to take up healthy, useful hobbies like cycling, earthworm-breeding and yoga. The National Fatwa Council would be abolished and replaced with the National Fat-Reducing Council, with a special mandate to monitor the weight of all top rank bureaucrats. All those prone to obesity would be nominated as contestants in state-sponsored marathon fuckfests - or summoned to the PM's office after hours to perform national service.

Another distinct advantage of having Sufiah Yusof as PM would be getting Hannah Tan (left) as deputy PM. I've only ever bumped into Hannah once at the Actors Studio foyer in Bangsar and she came across as an extremely friendly and enchanting person with heaps of undiscovered potential.

As deputy PM her official duties would include doing what she's already does so well - which is to reassure Malaysians that there's no place like home. As DPM Hannah would also serve as our roving ambassador-at-large, luring more foreign investors to embark on joint ventures and breed more irresistible Pan-Asian beauties.



3. NURUL IZZAH ANWAR: Izzah is only 34 (she turns 35 on 19 November) and has been an MP for just seven years, but judging by her effortless poise and magnetic personality (she has half-a-million likes on Facebook!) - not to mention her sparkling intelligence, maturity and dedication - she's already light years ahead of veteran politicos like Tengku Razaleigh - and every inch a natural-born Princess too. Put Nurul Izzah in a line-up with Rosmah Mansor, Rafidah Aziz, Shahrizat Abdul Jalil, Azalina Othman - and for good measure throw in the alluring Umno Princess Noraini Ahmad, the winsome Hannah Yeoh, and the indomitable Teresa Kok - and see just who the rakyat will nominate as prime ministerial candidate. Yup, Izzah is Daddy's Girl right down to her determination, her drive, her charismatic beauty and above all, her winning streak.


4. WAN AZIZAH ISMAIL: No other woman in Malaysia has done as much to demonstrate the quiet, gentle power of the Feminine Principle as former Opposition Leader Wan Azizah, fondly known as Kak Wan. She studied medicine at the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland and was awarded gold medals in obstretics and gynecology, but opted to graduate as an ophthamologist instead. When her husband was sacked as deputy PM and finance minister in September 1998, Wan Azizah rose to the occasion and led the Reformasi  movement as president of Parti KeADILan Nasional (the National Justice Party, which later merged with Parti Rakyat Malaysia to form Parti Keadilan Rakyat or the People's Justice Party).

All through the difficult years when her husband was incarcerated and in grievous pain from an untreated spinal injury, Wan Azizah carried herself with courage, dignity and stoicism - and yet she had a warm smile and a kind word for everyone she met at ceramahs. The people of Malaysia not only hold Wan Azizah in the highest esteem, but wholeheartedly adore, respect, and trust her. Not given to raising her voice or using harsh words, this living embodiment of nobility and virtue is the complete antithesis of - and the perfect antidote to - the degeneracy, corruption and hypocrisy within Umno that crept in during the Mahathir administration (and which continues to block the way for truly inspiring leaders to take over). With Wan Azizah as PM this nation will experience a massive healing and be restored to its destined greatness. There's only one contentious issue with Wan Azizah's candidacy for prime ministership: she says she's sick and tired of politics and vows to retire as soon as humanly possible. Which leaves...


5. DATO' SERI ANWAR IBRAHIM: Is he the world's most successful failure? How come he's still the Opposition Leader and not PM? And why did he insist in September 2008 that he had "the numbers" for a bloodless takeover of the federal government? Will Saiful Bukhari's sodomy accusation be exposed as a vile conspiracy and the whole ridiculous case thrown out - or will Anwar find himself sucked into a rerun of the same nightmare, like a Prometheus chained to a rock and subject to having his reputation devoured by a vulture named Mahathir for all eternity?

Anwar Ibrahim is undeniably a man of extraordinary destiny, whose life reads like classic mythology, and whose trials and tribulations have been epic, perhaps even messianic. Feared, mistrusted, slandered, betrayed, unjustly accused, cruelly arrested, brutalized, constantly criticized, politically crucified and thrown in the dungeon for six long years - Anwar Ibrahim's resurrection and heroic return from the political wilderness is the very stuff of legends. Despite the jaw-dropping miracle he has wrought by pulling and holding together the diverse factions within the Pakatan Rakyat opposition coalition - facilitating the political tsunami of 8 March 2008 that swept away Umno/BN's hitherto unvanquished and behemoth monopoly on power - some Malaysians remain skeptical and continue to mock Anwar's publicly stated ambition to become PM.

I am certainly not one of them. Since 2 September 1998 - the day Anwar ceased to be DPM, finance minister and Umno bigwig - I have been observing the man closely and he has conducted himself impeccably as a spiritual warrior and visionary leader. From grudging admiration and growing respect, I have come to love the man as dearly as I love myself and my country. Yes, I believe and trust in Anwar Ibrahim and I have absolutely no qualms that he will prove the best prime minister for Malaysia at this juncture of our political evolution. And that's precisely why Najib Razak has conspired to consign Anwar back to jail by making a complete mockery of Malaysia's judicial system.

Now how do we get Anwar Ibrahim released from prison and restored to complete health and vitality? He may well be Malaysia's only hope!

[Originally posted 6 November 2008 & reposted 16 February 2014 & 25 September 2014]