Wednesday, April 27, 2022

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

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.

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.

BAKRI MUSA: THE SULTANS' DAULAT IS A MYTH (PART 1)

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, 
23 December 2016 & 14 May 2018]






Monday, April 25, 2022

Reflections on Death, Resurrection, and the Afterlife (reprise)


Weddings and funerals are major social events in every Orang Asli community, bringing everybody together - just as they are in every other community - obviously because they are markers in the cycle of life and death. At Bayo's funeral on June 5th, 2007, I listened to the lay preacher (a Temuan from Tanjong Malim Calvary Mission) recite the last rites just before they covered the tiny, hastily knocked-together plywood coffin with earth.

Bayo's family is one of two in Pertak Village who converted to Christianity, probably in the 1980s, before the Orang Asli Affairs Department began taking a dim view of missionary incursions (apart from Islamic) into Orang Asli communities.

"Let this be a reminder to us all," the lay preacher intoned, "that our existence on this earth is only temporary. What God gives, God also takes away. But even death is temporary, for our souls are immortal; and those who believe in Jesus Christ shall live forever in Heaven."

It's been a long time since I heard such outright nonsense uttered. I drifted out of earshot and let the brief ceremony proceed. The lay preacher was merely parroting a doctrine handed down a hundred generations. Few question these pious platitudes, because nobody I know has returned from the grave to report on the afterlife (apart from a few who survived near-death experiences and whose stories have been recorded).

True, the entire basis of Christianity revolves around the belief that Jesus was bodily resurrected from his tomb and appeared before the Magdalene and the Apostles on what is now known as Easter Sunday.

However, the Koran explicitly disputes that the Master Jesus was actually crucified. "Another took his place," the Koran says - and this view is supported by the account of the Christos Incarnations recorded by the oracle, A'shayana Deane (initiate of the Melchizedek Cloister Emerald Order), as well as many other esoteric writings. But as it all boils down to a question of belief and faith, it's pointless to get into a heated debate on this issue, since opinions widely diverge on the subject.

The Orang Asli concept of the afterlife isn't all that different from the Christian version - except it doesn't require believing that Jesus is the only begotten Son of God. The physical form is only our fleshly baju (clothing), say the Temuan elders. Our roh (soul) does not die and already exists before we are born. Indeed, there doesn't seem to be much difference - apart from terminology - between what animists believe and what Christians, Muslims, Jews, Hindus, and Buddhists claim to believe. The common thread is the idea that the physical form is temporary, and the spiritual essence immortal. Now that is difficult to dispute, seeing as how plants, animals, and humans all go through a specific lifespan and then wither away before our eyes.

What distresses me, however, is that this devaluation of physical existence tends to make humans careless about the natural environment, Mother Earth, that gives rise to and supports their being. It makes a big difference whether people regard their homes as permanent and bequeathable - or only rented, and therefore temporary. Why invest so much effort in beautifying a rented property when, at any moment, you might get evicted by the owner? Would this explain why the Earth has been so badly treated by her human tenants?

When generation after generation is told by professional priests (regardless of denomination or sect) that their sojourn on Earth is but temporary, that their true home is in the afterlife, can you blame humans for not taking proper care of their bodies - and, by extension, their earthly home? This sort of "teaching" also serves to placate the impoverished masses who might otherwise decide they've had enough of being exploited and oppressed by the "ruling class" and join forces to overthrow the Management (a scenario that has occurred several times within recent history, but invariably it's a case of "Meet the new boss, same as the old boss" as Orwell depicted so memorably in Animal Farm).

Add to this the Buddhist and Hindu teachings of karma and reincarnation (which some interpret as "fate" or "predestiny") and you have a ready-made excuse to shrug off other people's misfortunes by saying, "Oh well, it's their bad karma that they got napalmed by the Americans."

Excuse me, but I'm inclined to view America's military adventurism as the result of an egocentric and opportunistic foreign policy rather than the workings of geopolitical karma. Bad management can be identified and redressed - and each citizen of every country shares the onus of restraining their leaders from gross, power-intoxicated misbehavior on the world stage.

And if we each paused for a moment and consciously decided to wholeheartedly appreciate and esteem the natural beauty around us - instead of taking it all for granted as we seem to have done for generations - then, perhaps, we may begin to realize that we lose absolutely nothing by investing our energy in making our earthly sojourn as heavenly as possible. So what if each of us can only enjoy it for a brief lifespan? Indeed we may discover that when life on earth becomes truly paradisal, we might decide to extend our visas indefinitely (instead of complaining that "life's a bitch"), thereby making translation to an abstract notion of Heaven merely optional.

Many of my friends have been interested in the idea of Ascension for years - though nobody appears to know exactly what the process entails. Some believe they can accelerate it by becoming vegan or by abstaining from sensory stimulants like caffeine, nicotine, and alcohol. They cling to the words of the Ascended Masters and secretly aspire to attaining similar spiritual status. Quite frankly, I seem to be looking at it all through the "wrong" end of the telescope in that I clearly remember what a joyous accomplishment it was to finally be able to inhabit a physical vehicle and explore reality in a dense body with all the miraculous sensory organs we have evolved over the aeons.

In this respect I'd much rather identify with the Descended Masters. Having experienced physical existence on this incredibly beautiful and boundlessly fascinating planet many times over (I've certainly had multiple flashbacks of parallel incarnations over the years), I've opted to adopt Earth as my base of operations and my permanent Home.

[First published 8 June 2007, reposted 1 February 2012]

Stories Old and New... That's Right, Folks... It's Just Stories... Stories Within Stories!

My Family Constellation
(with 3 missing siblings who didn't survive entry)
HIStory is just the story of the Father Principle - which, many thousands of years ago supplanted HERstory, the story of the Mother Principle. When the Father and Mother Principles realign, reattune and reharmonize - we experience the Sacred Union of Sun and Moon, Yang and Yin, Male and Female. 

Then the world - or our collective experience of reality - becomes OURstory (although such a word and such a world does not yet exist, but as soon you have read and understood this sentence, it shall!)... and then I can continue to write MYstory, which has always been, and shall always be, a Mystery.

On the fourth day of the 11th Gate Master Cylinder, Solara got all of us into small groups so we could write the closing chapter of our Old Stories. Then one day after the Activation Ceremony, we got together again to write the first chapter of our New Stories. Every one of us is essentially a Story - either well or badly told but nonetheless a Story. A Story badly told can be rewritten so it becomes readable. A Story well told will eventually be made into a Blockbuster!



LAST CHAPTER OF MY OLD STORY

Blessings upon my Godfather (Dr Peter Tong Kwok Kee) for pointing out the stars to me when I was just a few months old - and for igniting in me the spark of intelligence.

I was pretty normal until my 18th year when I stumbled upon the Book of Tao, read the first verse, and had goosebumps.

A year later I realized - much to my surprise and delight - that I was, in truth, God incarnate.

That got me in the mental asylum for three months. The only way I could secure my release was to renounce my divinity.

The next 20 years of my life were a slow process of reassembling the scattered pieces of the gigantic jjgsaw puzzle of my multidimensional being.

Finally most of the pieces fell into place and I regained access to the whole enchilada.

The problem now was, I was afraid to reveal who I truly was - in case I got put away again.

Just as well, because my 40 years in the desert gave other aspects of myself time to awaken and reclaim their vastness - so it became safe to finally proclaim my Godhood - safety in numbers!

But the greatest joke of all, it was no longer necessary, no longer important nor significant to be "divine" or to even identify with any primordial, deific, or noble lineage.

I was content to simply be a human being.

I still am. And although I'm a little curious about how it might feel to NOT exist, I'm in no hurry to experience the Ultimate Nothingness - since that's where it all began.

End of my old story. Time for tea. And, yes, a cigarette break is always welcome.

Antares Maitreya
(formerly known as the Ancient of Days)
18 November 2012



FIRST CHAPTER OF MY NEW STORY

What next? Who knows and who cares? Well, I do.

I know the meaning and purpose of my life - all Life! And I care for every living atom of it. Why? Simply because all of it is ME.

On a more "personal" level I want nothing - and everything. I know that acceptance, recognition and reward for being what I am and who I am is already flowing in, like the first rush of water from taps that have long been dry (or just dripping).

I know that whatever happens - or doesn't - to the financial system will make no difference to the abundance that I have finally, consciously, learned to receive - and to recirculate freely and universally.

I know that the planetary awakening of which my own has been an integral part will accelerate at the speed of love.


As more souls emerge from their cocoons, they will go in search of guidance and advice - and I will be here to serve in my own unique capacity.

I enjoy teaching and also learning. Aeons of ignorance and misapprehension of what Reality is all about have to be cleared. I happily lend my energies towards this joyful task.

I can't think of any specific desires I wish fulfilled - but whatever I wish for will manifest much more swiftly now that I no longer resist being all that I am and more.

At this juncture, it makes little difference whether I continue using my physical vehicle a little longer and then surrender it to the elements - or if I will be among the ones granted immortality through complete transmutation of my molecular structure.

Immortality is only acceptable in a self-regenerating, self-rejuvenating, non-degrading physical body. In a body subject to constant wear and tear, extreme longevity may not be such a  pleasant prospect - unless the body remains capable of enjoying everything bodies were designed to enjoy.

Antares
~^@^~

2:30PM
23 November 2012
Huayllabamba, Sacred Valley of the Incas, Peru


[First posted 6 January 2013, reposted 9 April 2018, 7 November 2018 & 
26 October 2019]