Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Reincarnation & How Are We Suppose To Live

Many people wanted change so much in the last election, in fact, more than half of us, and when that did not happen and when we have to live with the same regime, or a reincarnation of it, how are we suppose to live then.

It is quite true that variety is the spice of life, as the saying goes, that when we are bored, we want change, any change, for change is thought to be better than the same old stuff, so we thought in our moment of deep emotion and rage, that we do not really care whether it is really for the better. We even rally for change even when change does not happen when we want it. That rally is the resolution of that emotion that was wiped up in the beginning by the harbingers of change and, after the rally, we can expect that emotion to die down.

But things are not over. While we have seen the resolution of the emotion of those who have been most vocable, shouting from the outside, the emotion of the those who have been tight-lipped are not yet over. We can feel the fear and evil in the air, of those who smile and wobble their heads and utter snide remarks, as if to say, "We'll see." The daggers are out and murder is at hand.

But that is all high drama, which we all ordinary beings can only watch and stand clear so that when giants fall, we are not crush under.So, appeasement has failed to work, so some will argue and therefore there is no more need for that. There is no need to be nice, as we have so proven in the past/ The best way forward is to be Machiavellian, as we have done before, ignore them for it is dangerous to engage with people we do not understand, or who do not understand or are not sympathetic to us. In fact, we fear them, as they fear us.

So, how are we suppose to live, we poor souls caught in these dreary bodies that need feeding three times a day in other countries but five times in ours. Those of us who are youthful and energetic have expended our energies by flying here and there and putting little pieces of paper into transparent perspex boxes (so would say to no avail), while those of us who are older and frail who probably think that our days are better spent tapping our fingers onto plastic pieces to transmit electrical impulses to ether in the hope that things will somehow connect.

But, thoughts, good thoughts and bad thoughts, once conjured become alive and kept alive by those of similar frequencies, so the signals run to and fro along different wires that do not seem to connect with others. So wires running at cross purposes, creating a chaos that is orderly and perplexing at the same time. If we follow the impulses, we see them running all over the place. But if we should take a snapshot of things, we will find that things appear to suspend in space in frozen animation, as we wonder how the world such complexity can be when we are merely being naughty in the seemingly little things we do in private.

In this heavily connected universe, we find delight in our thoughts coming back to us when they are pleasant thoughts, and disgust when they are bad. What we can say of others, they can say of us; and vice verse. What others do, we follow; and what we do, others will imitate.

So, the world that we live in is nothing but the total consequence of all that have happened before, and how we respond to those things will react a new chain of actions and reactions. Because we are so tiny and things happen so slow that we think that things take time. But when we fast forward the tape, we find things happening in an instant, all things collapsing into a moment and into a point and we achieve unity and become one with one, or One.

If then the present is a consequence of the past, and if things should be unpleasant, or that we are adverse to what is coming to us, the best thing is to stop aggravating things with non-actions, pretend to be an invisible observer and take everything as they come. Only after we have observed what sort of things are coming to us can we, if we want, try to do something to mitigate the situation, and in the current moral world of duality that we know it today, when in reality there could be none, we can only mitigate bad with good.

In reality, we know how good when mixed with bad will not create neutrality but that the good will be contaminated by the bad. The only way that goodness can be restored in the real world is to remove the bad, so that the rest in their natural self will stay good, unspoilt.

It is at the most fundamental that the concept of good and bad makes sense. It is only with trust and human decency can we built a society that is wholly good, and when an attempt is made to bent society out of its natural shape that we get discord and a society where everybody is unhappy.

In the end, happiness is the natural way. Let the durian stinks like a durian, but taste just as delicious and not pretend to be a rambutan. Let everybody be ourselves, but let our leaders be trustworthy and decent. Then we all know how to live, without worrying too much about it.


james chua said...

Ethorists, the problem inherent is the road to hell is paved with good intentions.

How would one accommodate for a disastrous outcome out of a good intent? Or sincere, spiritual love extended is interpreted as a physical extension of a monster?

Or the risks of misinterpretation of what seems to be good, and a deed out of love, and to be utterly rejected? Or a misinterpretation of a karma debt not truly knowing there is none to start off with?

If the negative and unexpected outcome happens emotion devastation sets in and would that not be a maze of own making? How would one reconcile internally of trying to do good, or extending love when it is unwanted?

That the maze that one can get lost in, and not knowing how to get out.

Would truly appreciate your thoughts..

walla said...

If love is not wanted in one place, plant it somewhere else. If trust has been abused, give it to another party.

The maze of dilemmas dissolves itself when the camera of life shutters a new frame from a new angle. Especially when it is a Hasselblad.

Unless one intrinsically wants to wallow in some indeterminate state in order to hedge all bets out of some sense of timidity, there is nothing magical about making a stand when the situation demands it.

To clear our own heads, we just need to ask ourselves some simple questions.

One, if an incumbent has really been honestly doing well what it is supposed to do, why would voters want to replace it with another option?

Two, if the same incumbent has really delivered good performance over say thirty years, why would so many voters suddenly one sunday morning get up and walked in sun and rain to try and ballot it out?

Three, if the incumbent is nevertheless returned and yet revealingly blames voters for its own misdemeanors, shouldn't those voters who had voted for it not then rue their own moment of weakness for returning the incumbent?

The stand that was made by millions was on governance. In the case of the incumbent, their act of governing was more acting than governing.

Otherwise how do you explain they could have the temerity to portray they were surprised and aggrieved to such an extent they could conclude voters were ungrateful?

Their fault is plain to see for those who care to see. They equate a vote as a license to do any damn thing they like. They play their act to plant the seed in people that there should be no other option than them.

This is like a bad service provider insisting it should still be returned after bursting the budget, rewarding itself in advance and beyond the terms of contract, and causing general mayhem frivolous and vexatious on its employer.

And that is why even its own are now talking about the impending economic tsunami. As if they have just woken up. As if it is a new phenomenon. As if people who have not done their homework can wish away red marks. Except in this case, it'll all be too late.

Isn't that what the electorate has been trying to tell when it is not even supposed to be their business to tell a service provider how to get on with its job?

james chua said...

The problem you have is that the government has been taken over by thieves and fascist that have managed to protect their interest by fear mongering and by selective and abusive law enforcement.

The question now what would be trigger to get the people who have been taking such nonsense to stand up and remove these thieves.

But it is a natural progression of monopolistic ecosytems - where the holder will tend to abuse the system.

Haris Ibrahim's call could be the trigger. And what if the police and the government hits out? It would be a real mess.

The anger is out there. We are now in a potentially fiery situation; the right thing to do would be have a re-election. But that is an impossibility, Ethorists Hobson's choice has finally emerged.

walla said...

Governance starts with a T.

On one side, time series out the gazetted salaries and pre-appointment wealth. On the other side, time series out the accumulated wealth including those of family members and close relatives who have suddenly come into easy-street.

How many T's balance? Pacioli would have turned in his grave.

No econometric model will clarify how a minister's children could land a radar contract that ended up jeopardizing the lives of passengers. The same model would also not explain how the same minister could still be returned in his constituency; it won't even explain how he could have been appointed war room strategist.

Should it have required a plane to crash and lives reincarnated before people will come to their senses on the danger of denial what more syndicated crime?

Or shall we still conclude that unpleasantness is sufficient reason to avoid uncomfortable thoughts that generate bad vibes from the cold emotion of pure common sense, what more defense of good governance?

walla said...

We talk about evolutionary ecosystem. We also talk about the ordinary poor souls, hoi-polloi, plebeians and the masses caught in the matrix of that ecosystem.

We even comfort ourselves with the thought that the x of status quo should be preferred to the y of change because the former can wax eloquent about the promise of a better future.

Meanwhile Goldman Sachs walks away with a hefty fee beyond market standard for the new black hole that is 1MDB while those who have to pick up the tabs will be the children of the masses who will be puzzling years from now how come they are still languishing when so much has been promised in glowing terms by those whom they have placed their trust for good governance.

Fortunately for the incumbent, that under-performance can be blamed on the just-in-time arrival of an economic tsunami as a subset of some global meltdown.

And if that fails, the incumbent can still draw upon its recruited actors and actresses to grieve together with the masses while singing united we stand, divided we fall.

If singing and sloganeering can solve economic problems, Keynes and Hayek would have been rock stars. Or, war room strategists.

walla said...

So it appears the road to good governance must be paved by trustworthy and decent leaders while the masses stand hopefully on the sidewalks drinking their respective fruit juices of happiness.

There is a possibility but it is an extremely small one that veteran criminals would turn over a new leaf on their own and transform themselves into good policemen. Some will graphically say the possibility is so small in the local context that it would have been easier and faster for a camel to go through the eye of a needle.

And you know this is all true because the real enforcement in charge of homeland peace at the moment can only threateningly mutter about ten-day notice for mass rallies when those who will be rallying have had to challenge the underlings of the enforcers who were trying to get additional ballot bags into tally stations after voting had closed.

Good governance is the burning platform. If enforcers don't enforce that, how can the masses continue to sit and contemplate the promise of tomorrow when those who made those promises and will rule over them are the ones who have told the enforcers to clamp down on justice and fairness, words no longer in the lexicon of today's win-at-all-costs leaders.

It is fast becoming a situation when it is not just criminals not being able to change to be enforcers; it has also become too often enforcers who are changing to the other side against the very principles they must uphold independent of the people they report to who in any case will be lesser in numbers by a large margin than the numbers they had vowed to serve.


walla said...

So what is the bottom-line?

It is the first and yet most decisive emergence of mass activism whose basic and common objective is to send clear messages on what must be rejected and removed.

In other words, this nation has finally matured to the stage its peoples can collectively identify and demand real standards of behavior, performance and results.

They've had enough of people who can progress from paper clip today to pencil tomorrow to a quantum leap into the big league of free helicopter rides, ten percent cut on sawn timber, thirty percent free equity in enterprises that catches the eye, weekend romps in five-star hotels, sleek limousines polished by servile drivers, marbled mansions and fat offshore accounts, office-hour tee-offs in lush golf courses hushed off by young secretaries with long eyelashes, classy children with fair complexion from extended overseas stays on strings-erased state scholarships, a retirement plan with a minimum high position earning bulging paychecks, perks and stock options, and an appropriate state-level elergy when the final obituary has to be crafted.

And it all starts with a simple plastic card holding a special membership; at worse, giving a stirring speech one day, making an appearance another, saying something that is just controversial enough to win bunny points from those of the same mould, and smiling when it is needed, frowning when it is needed, or yawning when the camera is the other way so that what's between the ears are just those share certificates and what's in the ears is the cash register ringing merrily away.

Meanwhile the jungle creeps back and reclaims one and all.

walla said...

The time difference between the last two posts was the time needed to cook rice and perform other chores.

So what if all this turns out wrong?

Shall one then take comfort that life is just basically a collection of chores coursing like digital pulses through fiberized cables in the most mathematically optimized queuing mode summed over all possibilities only to end up one fine day with a final repose upon which moment the balance sheet or KPI scoreboard is presented to determine which new dimension the exiting presence must wear for the next domicile?

Presumably some may be surprised to find they end up in cages while others may end up in Norway whose well-maintained oil sovereign fund helps secure the future of its citizens so that they will have less financial worries and more energy to discharge their thoughts in fruitful preoccupations like innovating new products and services, practicing zen in real life, and participating in log-sawing competitions.

Those who will be receiving less interesting itineraries to new destinations may take comfort that the beemer three series hardtop apple-green coupe with blaupunkt stereo, hi-fidelity wifi and nappa leather seats in their garage won't be accompanying them in the journey, and thus not is part and parcel of the travel package in the present dimension which means they should reevaluate everything now to stop the wonder what it's all about anyway.


walla said...

It has been said what one cannot know, one must pass over in silence.

However, it was not said how much of what one cannot know would make that mandate realistically acceptable.

Since the hour is hot and there are things to share, perhaps the unknown if not known enough tips into the domain of a possibility whose time has arrived.

At risk of the trite cliche that anything is possible, there could be a possibility there is more than one type of karma, for that matter reincarnation.

Nevertheless, it is useful for general human purpose to pursue the line of thought on both as they have been usually understood. Namely, do good, reborn better, do bad, reborn worse, in some procedural and processional progress paradigm.

So that taken to its limits, at every moment within each life, a person is reincarnated instantaneously in the same form but not necessarily with the same substance.

Thus the substances of our lives are paramount to mount the intergalactic ladder of reincarnation.

Since all humans carry similar forms, the cross-cultural commonality of their substances must be about universal values.

However universal values may not be absolute; they could very well be relative.

Take for instance the decompression of an air cabin. The oxygen mask drops. The instruction says you help yourself first before attending to others. This is against the universal value of selflessness.

Yet there is a very good principle behind it. The principle in this particular example is sustainability. It is no point becoming unconscious which will render one unable to assist others and therefore unable to taste the universal value of selflessness. Selflessness itself is thus subject to secular law.

Hence, taking a liberal dose of generalization, what underpins universal values is the principle of sustainability of relativity.

Which immediate explains why it feels like one minute when one sits next to someone nice for an hour but it feels like one hour when one sits on a hot stove for one minute.

And when one sits next to walla, it will feel like an eternity, won't it?

So that when one sits next to a court-of-appeal judge who spews racist filth one day, and next day says it is just to jihad for transformation, it must certainly feel like being in the woe-begone underworld, what with all the noxious sulphur in the room.

Which comes back to this reincarnation-karma challenge. Under the limits of our human context of trying to sustain relative but yet universal values, something surfaces.

It is a belief we can construct, namely the highest blessing anyone can get in a particular life is to be able to connect causes to actions which both take place inside that life itself so that karma is known with post-relative clarity even before it is triggered into the next life.

If that can be achieved, the difficulty of reconciling universality with relativity will be banished, and people won't have to wonder how good can result in bad, how bad can triumph over good, or for that matter quibble why they suffer so much or rejoice so little.

It'll be the return of true justice, perfectly balanced scales, and the balance sheet of life.

It may also spell the end of blogosphere's. Where it matters.


james chua said...

Hey Walla, you probably right about if one sits next to Walla, it would be like eternity. That guy of yours must be eternity be in heaven.

That comparison about the pot, that really intrigues...

I dont think if there will ever be a balanced scale, so there will no end of blogsphere because for every good that sprouts up, corruption inevitably follows. Without evil, how do you define good? They both are intertwined.

walla said...

"Without evil, how do you define good?"..ah, not necessarily so.

Without evil, good is natural onto itself and needs no definition.

Without good, evil is unnatural onto itself and needs to be defined against its opposite, therefore creating good.

Good is inherently natural because it creates to sustain without which there will be no more need to live.

Evil is inherently unnatural because it destroys all others including those who want to sustain good.

That good ultimately triumphs over evil (so one likes to believe) explains why we can still be around to write all this without a single thought in the head....

And sitting on hot stoves presumably cures piles. Quickly (;P).

james chua said...

Haha that is a real hot presumption and most likely to be the mother of all errors!!! Wondered if anyone had ever dont that - ie sitting on a hot stove to cure piles~

walla said...

A: How are we supposed to live?
B: With the smallest footprint.

A: Why is that preferred?
B: There's genius in being ordinary; there's wisdom in being in the belly of the bell curve.

A: A nail that stands up gets hammered?
B: Something like that; there are always more nails than hammers.

A: Safety in numbers?
B: Something else. There seems to be an inverse correlation between body mass and metabolic rate. Big whale slow heartbeat; small shrew fast heartbeat.

On that basis, man's lifespan should have been 31 years; he lives to 80 these days only because of scientific advance. Of course, many expire earlier from economic distress.

It seems all living things are supposed to have similar numbers of heartbeats out of the correlation between their body mass and metabolic rate. Doesn't that say something philosophical which negates the importance of safety in numbers?

A: But the obese and inactive tend more to have heart diseases.
B: Could be the heart is supposed to beat at a particular rate but the enlarged body mass creates an unnatural stress in the reiki system, tipping the scales.

A: Does that then mean living things are supposed to harmonize with nature?
B: Tomes have been written on the subject.
A: But how can one harmonize with situations which change constantly?
B: Change is as much communication arrived as difference intruded.

A: Cut off all communication?
B: That would be dangerous. An alarm says danger.
A: Resolution?
B: Accept what is communicated but sieve what is to impact.
A: Too many react too quickly to facile messages and situational changes.
B: A sign of the times; a signal of system overload marred by an urgency to compete produced by misplaced priorities, both by individual and institution.

A: Constantly maintain equilibrium of internal rhythms?
B: Seems the way. But one tends to forget. How many can constantly unchange anything in a constantly changing situation these days?
A: Meditation and spartan lifestyle?
B: Difficult for too many in this age and time of incessant noise and sensory attractions.
A: Then alas?
B: Not necessarily so. How about maintaining just a naturally meditative mode in the mind itself without limbic contortions?
A: That would still require some belief about how to live, a belief that itself requires an investment in effort, an investment that itself requires personal comportment, a comportment that many don't have.
B: It's because they have not been trained early. A lot of what determines how mid-lives evolve happens during the earlier years when hormones rage and the need to experiment and stretch experiences manifest at their maximum.
A: Why does that happen?
B: Because nature and society subscribe to the sigmoid curve of growth and development.
A: Like in our economics here? A lot of linear growth, too little lateral development?
B: People should take a step back and re-evaluate everything they have been doing.
A: Against what frame of reference?
B: Against the frame of sustainable happiness.

walla said...

A: Happiness. Is that possible when one must seek out the fortitude of constant equanimity?
B: Happiness is an emotion believed to be needed for achievements.
A: But the best artists and poets created their best works when drowning in grief.
B: They? fat tail of bell curve. Most people just want to be happy in a simple way so that their internal rhythm is not taxed too much by the price to pay for happiness.

A: Simple folks?
B: Simple strokes.
A: But simple folks too are pained beyond what they can say.
B: Which door has not received the knock of suffering?
A: Life balances out all?
B: The shrew, the whale.
A: Is that a lifestyle where the price is small, the gain plenty?
B: Cheap and good?
A: Errr, mayhaps?
B: The sigmoid curve imposed on the bell curve would create a tangential force that renders that utopia inherently unstable.
A: So, impossible?
B: To answer would require absolute knowledge. Please move on.
A: But to pursue that is still something to...
B: Hope for? Hope springs eternal in the naive.
A: That is so macabre. Why shouldn't there be hope for sustainable happiness?
B: Because some suffering is needed to hone something.
A: What?
B: Nobilization.
A: Of what?
B: Of life. Just think; man is fragile. It takes three millennia to produce him out of some primeval soup. It takes only three seconds to snuff him out.
A: And some can tell others to leave if they don't like their election system.
B: Got system, meh? Got credentials to say so, meh?
A: We have idiots in our midst.
B: A product of the system, both swaggering beyond their respective expiry dates, clinging onto to dear life, life of little consequence to most inasmuch themselves.
A: Hurrah for saying that!
B: But all the same, might has been made right. Despotism disguised as democracy, no?
A: Yet every body remains in its state of rest or constant motion unless acted upon by an external force. Changes must be foisted.
B: Happiness and hope.

walla said...

A: If you can be given anything but only for yourself alone, what want you?
B: This minute? Some food would be good.
A: (sigh)..And beyond that?
B: How about compound interest? Or rounding errors of the world?
A: Errr. Something less pecuniary?
B: Oh, easy then. The Josiah Willard Gibbs chair at Yale.
A: Grief! Why that?
B: It hasn't been created yet.
A: But why advanced thermodynamics?
B: So that one can predict anything, including tipping points in chaotic situations. Including why i am here. I mean - here, sini.
A: You're here because you have nowhere else to go.
B: But i have been enough to be able to extrapolate and intrapolate. Why ask for more when enough is sufficient?
A: Should we ever want anything, even that?
B: We may want but whether what we want we get may take an eternity to answer. And that's just the answer, not even the thing.
A: You're so dry and dessicated.
B: That's possibly a tautology.
A: I was just trying to reinforce. Now why didn't you answer you would want for the world to be free from suffering?
B: Selfmoreness?
A: But that's so unlike you.
B: What's me?
A: A good human being.
B: What's a good human being?
A: Someone who is ordinary in needs, extraordinary in sacrifice and outward compassion.
B: Any contractual commercial valuations to that?
A: You're so deflating. Why?
B: Why must there be a why? Why not why-not?
A: Because we must still believe in the ideal of non-crassification of life.
B: You want the chair? Yes, too much classification around.
A: Errr, i mean...oh never mind.

walla said...

A: I've been dying to ask you something.
B: Errr, don't.
A: Oh, why not? You haven't even heard the question yet.
B: I mean i don't want you to die. You have not completed your life programme. It is a diet regime that must be completed in full in order for you to harvest full benefit as guaranteed under corporate law.
A: Errr, does that mean i can pose you the question?
B: Shoot, but gently. We are living in a gentle and polite society, remember?
A: Errr, if you say so. Does God exist?
B: You got money?
A: Oi, what has money got to do with Him?
B: You need money to buy some things first so that you can prove to yourself whether He exists, no?
A: Ok, hypothetically let's say i have money. How much?
B: Just enough to buy some cooking oil and a wick.
A: Oh? you're going to boil out your answer?
B: (scratches head) No-lah.
A: Then what? quick say.
B: Why, we are getting some cheap matinee tickets-kah? Patience, my friend.
A: I am the acme and epitome of patience. Now what's the oil and wick for?
B: (eyes roll). To light, of course.
A: Ok, i have lit the lamp. Now what, genie appear izzit?
B: See, you're so cynical. The path to faith is strewn with fallen cynics.
A: Aristotle or Socrates?
B: Just dear, young and unattached walla.
A: Ah, a devoted and filial daughter.
B: Now where were we?
A: God.
B: Yes, your lamp is lit, i see.
A: You know very well it is lit. Your pair of darting eyes have seen me light it so it is lit. Now what?
B: How come when people want to talk about Him, they get so jumpy?
A: Ok, gimme a minute. I better drink some hundred-plus.
B: My friend, that's red bull you have just drank. Shall we adjourn for some hand-rolled tobacco?
A: You have fallen, i see.
B: But others have lifted me up.
A: You were about to say by the way?
B: Astute of you. By the way there must be no draught on the lighted lamp.
A: Ah! i get it immediately.
B: Then you already know Him. What more needn't i say?
A: Brilliant!
B: I know (coughs).

james chua said...

Walla, you never fail to amaze.

Even Smeagol, and my other "friends" of the past Dr. Livingston, Tom Harrison (the eccentric former curator of the Sarawak Museum), would have a hard time catching up.

ThanKs for the enlightenment and mental stimulus for one lost!!!!

walla said...

A: I am bored.
B: Me too.
A: We have only been messing around with heavy stuff. Why not go the opposite direction?
B: You mean.....?
A: Epicurean, materialism, trivialities, superficiality incarnate!
B: (devilish grin) I like!
A: Yes, on this hot ho hum afternoon, let's corrupt all men reading in.
B: Two will be beyond your exertions. One, the blogger who is as immovable as a rock in a garden in Kyoto.
A: Wow! is he a zen master meditating there?
B: No, just a rock sitting there. Wakaka. Hmm...you did say liven up this joint, no?
A: Err, and who's the other so-called immovable rock?
B: A white-haired legal eagle, one who soars into outer space.
A: Err again, there's something you're not saying there but ok let's move on and create mayhem and mischief!
B: I am agog with expectations and excitement. Please proceed. By the way, do you think we may be hauled up by the authorities?
A: Depends how we phrase ourselves. Let's keep it to simple things. Say, a shopping list for bored men with some means.
B: You mean spare cash, financial liquidity, charmed life? Then count me out, baby.
A: Oh, spoilsport. Why not imagine?
B: That i have aplenty, lotsa imagination. Ok, how's the game to be played?
A: I suggest a thing. You suggest what or where or which brand it should be.
B: Cool!
A: Home
B: Penang Jelutong freehold three-balconied apartment. Two free covered car lots on ground floor and near lifts. Low maintenance fee but high valuation, if at all possible.
A: Ohh?? I am completely befuddled.
B: Simple. Across the apartment is the market. That's where she sells ikan bakar with belacan. Scrumptious and by that i mean the fish. There's also another good reason. A short drive takes you to the foothill where the Air Itam market is located. There he sells teochew tofu. When dipped in soy sauce with chopped garlic, chili padi and basil leaves, simply out of this planet. Good eh?
A: You're mad. And what's with this three balcony thing?
B: One to see the park and some greens. Second to see the pool and some blue. Third to dry clothes when the sun comes up.
A: Err, next. Car?
B: Err (scratches ear like cat)...
A: (hits forehead with hand). Ok M3 it is but it performs only on ron-97 which is of course two ninety and climbing.
B: Must also have polished paneled wood of the finest grain too, you know.
A: Haha! Next. Writing instruments.
B: Waterman model 100 blue-green lacquer.
A: Wah! Wristwatch?
B: Glashutte asian-sized leather-strapped.
A: Gott imm Himmel! lighter?
B: Dunhill slim and gold.
A: Handphone.
B: Nokia duo-sim
A: Oi, in this day and age of smartphones...
B: I disdain subsidies from felons. Wakaka!
A: Hmm, how noble. Ok next. Computer hardware and software.
B: (rubs chin) Desktop Acer tower; screen samsung; laptop HP ultralite; external harddisk samsung, thumbdrive kingston, laser printer HP, color printer Oce if still in production. And softwares Msoft 8 with adobe professional and avg.
A: That all? I would have thought you would go for others, well you know...
B: One shalt not covet too much. Hehe.
A: Ok, if you insist. Travel luggage?
B: Carlton ultralite sizes large, medium and cabin.
A: Why ultralite?
B: To cram more things in for 25 kilos with a disarming smile to the airline staff.
A: Err..backpack?
B: Fido-dido duo-color.
A: I'm stumped!
B: Me too. Next?

walla said...

A: Shoes
B: Bally leather and swiss not italian made; french shriner boston-made, streetcar semiboots, and nike airsole walkers.
A: My jaw drops. Sandals?
B: Leather obermain thai-made.
A: Leather accessories?
B: Hermes wallet, belt with hidden compartment for spare notes, coin purse, and pouch. But don't tell her.
A: Now we're talking! Toiletries?
B: Paco Rabanne.
A: Name sounds familiar but i haven't seen it around. Nonetheless, next. Garments?
B: Cotton longsleeved white shirts brand New Balance, last made in Hongkong. It has the best-designed collar in the world. Double-mercerized fine cotton tees, assorted brands although lamborghinni beckons. Dockers cotton long pants. Nicole premium type cotton shorts (last out of stock). Italian cotone kerchiefs. Pierre Cardin cotton boxers. Chungtai silk undershirts brand 66666 if you can still find them. And Giorgio Armani cotton jackets at empat puluh lima ringgit each (psst not so loud).
A: Err this 66666. Is it safe?
B: Try..and see. Wakaka!
A: And empat puluh ssssh??
B: Not so loud-lah.
A: Ok. What have i missed out? Fiction authors?
B: All books by Forsyth and three only by Follett.
A: Hmm, you seem to belong to another era. Which three by Follett?
B: Eye of the Needle, Triple and The Man from St Petersburg.
A: OMG! You have racy blood in you!
B: At my vintage?
A: Just evergreen wine in old port, i believe. Nonfiction books.
B: Any subject in the world. Or out of it. Anything on strategy management, geopolitics, convergence.
A: What about philosophy?
B: What's that? Wakaka!
A: I am about to surrender. Paper notebooks?
B: Moleskin A6 unlined.
A: Drat! Tea, coffee?
B: Alitea, Old Town Hazelnut. Both in boiling filtered water laced with HL and fullcream condensed milk.
A: Camera? Haha gotcha!
B: A lumix will have to do. The other one is not available.
A: You mean Hasselblad?
B: Not any Hasselblad. The one used to take the astronaut walking in space.
A: (jaw drops). I see you have exacting standards. Tobacco?
B: Marlboro Mint/Ice. The one where you can break the crystal.
A: You're beyond redemption. I shall have to report you to the MOH. Shares.
B: Apple, Google, Mastercard and Berkshire Hathaway. For one who doesn't own any. Wakaka.
A: Getaways.
B: Bali, Phuket and Beijing.
A: Ah, a combination of rustic old and modern new.
B: I am relieved you're just thinking of that. Wakaka!
A: Naughty, aren't we?
B: Just trying to be an unstoppable force awakening an immovable rock. Wakaka! Adios, amigos.
A: You're either mad or sad.
B: No, as they say in oxford, just bad.
A: By the way, why two car lots?
B: Oh, didn't you see the other one, the Porsche 993 of impeccable vintage parked there?
A: Ah, how did i miss that?! Imagination, the spice of bored lives!

The end.


james chua said...

You are good. Beats my impossible dreams anytime. Where's Ethorist? Bet all my horse that he is of the same caliber - good stuff to clean out the mind in solitary confinement.

james chua said...

Too good to keep to myself, so I shared it. see jameschua889 at FB

walla said...

All that materialistic talk was of course just jocular nonsense. If anyone reading in takes offense with it, then i would say that person is already on a more promising track in life.

After all, when we were born, did the maternity record suggest one was to live on things or brands? We came rather lightly; so too should be the exit.

Things and such shouldn't be playing any major role here. You have one that is desired and it loses its sheen quickly; then the next higher and it soon faces the same fate. While familiarity may not exactly breed contempt, it does inbreed itself to create a constant yearning for something else so that one loses the art of enjoying what is already in hand from dreaming only of what is not which in turn causes the loss of gratitude and humility where they matter in the definition of simplicity.

What's therefore important is how we conduct ourselves in life as simply as possible, and what we think and do in the interval, hopefully long and happy for all of you.

Some may suggest one should detach completely. This seems a method to inure oneself in some anti-pain cocoon. Perhaps it has a value in itself..to detach from all mortal coils as a prelude to gain clarity and insight for better personal conduct.

Others however may suggest one should feel and experience even at the risk of developing some attachments but along some prescribed scale. This also has merits for it helps one to act humane even as that will engender more faults with all its resulting pains.

Maybe the answer how we are supposed to live requires both to be applied at different stages or times in life.

In which case, it is just possible that the final achievement should be to somehow integrate both together so seamlessly that what comes out will only be positive for others as an outcome of some natural positivity achieved for oneself.

In other words, the way to live is to be in wisdom-generated harmony with oneself which pings deepening values to others who are in the same journey called life.

Of course the notion of self is also up to some level of debate. But that's another topic entirely.

I end my contribution on this one here. Thanks for all the indulgence.


james chua said...

Many thanks for an entertaining write up.

Brands do fulfill psychological and social needs - no average person on the street is going to be able to tell between a glashute or vacheron, for them it could even just a cheap watch on someone's hand.

It is hard to find minimalists but there is one place I know they abound - New Zealand.