I brought to you this theme on "Materialism" as it is a subject of varied forms which will become one of the dominant impulses in the 21st Century, not just as being materialistic but as in materialization- as the world gets more networked, open, globalised and democratic with the coming of the internet era that every individual manifest themselves in materiality.

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Location: Singapore

OUT OF WORK, NO RESOURCES, NO SUPPORT. HANDICAPPED- His Whereabouts, Actions, Privacy, are easily known to other people; even worst his enemies from other religions. His old Geocities and Adlandpro passwords were erased after he had painstakingly built his FRIENDSHIPS and his personal site to Earn Money from Network Marketing. He TALKS with VOICE from his HEART (which other people can hear)about all the STUPIDITY, IDIOCITY of people, IDOLISING just about anything- be animate or inanimate. He HAS ONLY feelings of LOVE, SEXUAL URGES and ORGASMS that can be felt by other women especially at work and his closest neighbours, usually in the night. People who knew just did not OFFER HELP; instead rather Wait and See if he is a TRUE GOOD SUPER BEING, hoping maybe that he will be a leader who will rule and give them MORE MATERIAL WEALTHS. PEOPLE ARE SO STUPID!

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Spiritual Growth and Other Values

All human beings are physical forms and have selfish needs.However, economic activity is but one aspect of human life.For a more balanced and civil society, there must also be consideration for other aspects of human life- other types of desires and happiness.If we just concentrate on economic and material aspect to the exclusion of others- then we will not, in the end, get a balanced society that we should be aiming for.

In striving for wealth creation, economic growth should not over-ride the social needs of the community.

If life is only about harvesting money, then society will be very hesitant to provide social amenities and people reluctant to do voluntary work.In fact, the disturbing signs are already showing.Some volunteers are already feeling more resigned than fulfilled but at the same time a different breed of volunteers emerged.When we start weighing social needs against opportunity costs, and encourage only commercial activities and leave social activities to fend for themselves,we will tend to see those who cannot produce as much as they consume as burdens to society.Being over-commercialism, these new breed of volunteers see the opportunities of achieving their own interests, friends and families.

The sole preoccupation with this selfish aspect of human activities will surely cause an unhealthy change in social values of the community.

The presence of such an unhealthy change is obvious when rich people in big cars start rushing for free used textbooks meant for poor and needy students.Another example, when rich people who can buy nice, big cars but asking for free parking at commercial buildings?!

The future will not eliminate the human condition and solve all human problems.While people should be free to take control of their own lifes, the society can only survive if there is a real growth in depth of social feelings and understanding to match the material abundance.The society will fail not because of the absence of quantity but the lack of quality.

This social understanding can only come about when we are able to see that a caring and enlightened society cannot be conceived solely in economic terms.Any society that uses economic productivity to access the worth of each member of our society will destroy the caring and supportive ethos of our community.What is the meaning of society or community when there is no care or welfare?

This lack of social understanding by eroding social morality will become a danger to social cohesion.This is because social morality is essential for order and harmony and the preservation of social state.Laws and Orders alone are not enough.

Without social morality, economic advances will have sociological consequences which are not always beneficial.With the object of bettering his material and social status, an individual may act in ways which will have hurtful consequences for others.Economic growth may bring material benefits but it may also erode qualities such as reasoning, imagination, sympathy and feeling for fellow human beings.Such mental mutilation is the result of materialistic obsessions and narrow-mindedness.For this reason, idealism and moral principles are even more necessary in the free market societies of the rapidly changing world.

There is nothing wrong with striving for physical comforts and luxuries.Some of these things have become basic necessities for a modern social community.However the pure consumption of goods and services alone does not lead to fulfillment and happiness.That is why in spite of our "wealths", Singaporeans still are such grumbling lots!

Why then are we grumbling when life is so "good"? This is because, in life, there must be a mental space for a person to nourish his "soul".This is what everyone lacks!

Economic growth, therefore, should not be just a tool purely for the acquisition of wealths.More important, it must also be a tool that can free people to find true meaning of life and help them attain a higher level of moral development.

Housing and economic growth are important for our physical survival and well-being.Beyond this physical provisions, economic growth must help us in our spiritual growth.If we allow profits, dividends and the value of our flats and our cars to imprison our human spirit and enslave us psychologically, then we can never hope to develop a society that can free the human imagination to help us grow as a community in the next century.

While success should be duly rewarded and we should not deprive the hardworking people of their dues, the single-minded approach of measuring success in monetary terms will forever limit the personal development of the individual and make him feel constantly anxious and insecure all the time.

Thus to build a society rich in community spirit, we have to address the intangible needs of man.Only in an environment that can cater to the intangible needs of its citizens will our people be able to emphatise with each other.Only such environment can free our people to test their full range of imagination and intellect.

Singapore is not known to be a lively place for political, intellectual and philosophical discussions.What most people want is a bigger house, a bigger car and lots of money to spend most of their times outside of their homes.

To most Singaporeans, getting involved in civil participation and political discussions is not only economically unproductive but may sometimes bring trouble.The attitude then is just to make lots of money becoming only an extravagant and never bother at anything else.

All of us understand that cohesion, caring for others, community consciousness and the spirit of helping others is important to nation-building.Yet all these ideals will come to nought if the mind is still shackled by the anxiety to acquire more material wealths.The individual can integrate himself fully into the life of the community only if he sees himself as a useful and functional part of the community.

Meaning and Importance of Participation

Materialism can be damaging to both the individual and the country.To the individual, it corrupts his moral integrity.To the country, it breeds abuse of power, manipulation of the economy, mascarading beneath iron-fisted governing and towards political indifference!!

Thus, if we want to breathe life into the nation and give our country a soul, then our people must imbued with idealism to match our materialism.While we need to accomodate physical and economic realities, we also need to have the urge of wanting to do something for our fellow human beings.

This means going beyond the basic material needs and to try find a higher meaning of life.We can do this when the mental space of the individual is allowed to reflect and search for the truth; to develop his understanding to help transform the life of his community.In turn, the individual's attitudes and beliefs must be allowed to be forged and tempered by the attitudes and beliefs of others in the community.

We need active citizens to achieve this.We also need a more conducive climate for such people to play their part in the affairs of the community and the country.

People should be encouraged to express views- not blatantly display their extravagant ways! Any debates on public policies should be viewed as attempts to search for answers to our country's problems.

Every person should be encouraged to dream and to communicate his ideas so that he could be part of the sum total of views and opinions that determine the destiny of his country and society.

However, if our people's involvement in the affairs of the country is limited only to being curious bystanders or think-about-your-job supporters, watching for only the outcome of gladiatorial politics and political roadshows during general elections, then we will just be successful commercial centre in the global village and not a proud country with a heart in a world of nations.

Only with a dynamic and lively participatory climate can we learn to give and take, show caring heart of love and compassion and work towards a more harmonious community.Only a lively climate of open discussions and democratic freedom can help to nurture this; but be forewarn that this area of openness and freedom can also be changed into reversal threats to win a discussion or public arguments.Only then are we be able to live joyfully and in harmony with our fellow citizens.

It is this participation that will give a citizen the sense of rights and moral obligations.Thus each and every citizen will have a claim on other citizens to be treated justly and equally.He will also have a responsibility to meet such claims that others have upon him.Just laws applied truthfully to everybody will then be able to be built on this foundation.

The fundamental principle to remember is that we are living in a social state and we should strive to find happiness for all.


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