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Showing posts from February, 2006

Hakuna Matata

It means no worries
For the rest of your days
It's our problem-free philosophy
Hakuna Matata!

Hmm...., sounds not bad. Hakuna Matata... till this day, it's still my favourite disney song from my favourite disney animation: Lion King. Yeah, Hakuna Matata, what a wonderful phrase... ain't no passing craze at all. But let's ask ourselves one question: in this modern society, is it really possible to be problem-free at all. In the context of Lion King, Simba was driven away from his rightful inheritance, and found hiself ended up with the carefree Timon and Pumbaa. He could afford to be problem free there with them. But can we?

Take for example a student at NUS. Given that he's the average student who works when he should be and play when he should be, he will surely have problems - either with his project mates, essays, lecturers or maybe even girlfriend. He might even have to cope with his own financial problems. Likewise, even a monk will have his own problems with the …

Closer perhaps

It isn't that often these days that I'll update my blog more than once a day. But something just strucked my mind that I have decided to do it for today. First, I just finished my empires essay and I want to give thanks to God for the wisdom and guidance He has graciously given me. God is real and living, somebody say 'Amen'.

Amen.

Now, actually, I was just thinking about some questions about human characters. You know what? They say (I forgot who's the 'they') that in order to know who you really are, just look at the 10 closest persons in your life, and you will know. They say that you will be like these 10 persons as they are so close to you that you will inevitably be influenced by them. True, reasonably reasonable. I agree with that. Therefore, if the people closest to you are successful entrepreneurs, you will surely become more entrepreneurlike in times to come. Likewise, if the people are rotten eggs, mixed with a pinch of bird shit, spiced by a bit…

Johari Square as of 26/02/2006

Arena(known to self and others) cheerful, confident, energetic, knowledgeable, proudBlind Spot(known only to others) bold, clever, dependable, extroverted, friendly, giving, helpful, idealistic, independent, kind, logical, mature, modest, observant, organised, patient, religious, responsive, self-assertive, spontaneous, trustworthy, wittyFaƧade(known only to self) intelligentUnknown(known to nobody) able, accepting, adaptable, brave, calm, caring, complex, dignified, happy, ingenious, introverted, loving, nervous, powerful, quiet, reflective, relaxed, searching, self-conscious, sensible, sentimental, shy, silly, sympathetic, tense, warm, wiseAll Percentagesable (0%)accepting (0%)adaptable (0%)bold (20%) brave (0%)calm (0%)caring (0%)cheerful (10%) clever (30%) complex (0%)confident (40%) dependable (30%) dignified (0%)energetic (10%) extroverted (40%) friendly (40%) giving (10%) happy (0%)helpful (30%) idealistic (10%) independent (30%) ingenious (0%)intelligent (0%)introverted (0%)kind

Empires and colonies

There are many reasons why empires were established, but the most lasting ones have always been Gold and Glory. Take a modern empire for example: the United State. If an empire means the relationship of a hegemonial state to peoples or nations under its control, then certainly the United States fit into the description. Speaking in an extremely un-academic manner (I'm sick of doing things in the academic way for the moment), the United States, under George Bush, has truly established an empire, all over the world. Its economic control over the world is certainly a testimony of its imperialistic nature... and isn't it true that they hold an interest in the oil in the Middle East, and sought for glory in the wars recently in the same areas? Anyway, let's drop that topic, I'm not here to argue about that.

But what does empire mean to you? So far, we have been learning about empires in history, under the context of conquest and occupation. It's done by human... And his…

Signed by blood

This is a story taken from Joshua Harris, which touched me quite a lot and compelled me to share it after reading. Here goes:

In that place between wakefulness and dreams, I (Joshua Harris) found myself in the room. There were no distinguished features save for the one wall covered with small index-card files.

They were like the ones in libraries that list titles by author or subject in alphabetical order. But these files, which stretched from floor to ceiling and seemingly endlessly in either direction, had very different headings. As I drew near the wall of files, the first to catch my attention was one that read 'Girls I have liked'. I opened it and began flipping through the cards. I quickly shut it, shocked to realised that I recognised the names written on each one.

And then without being told, I knew exactly where I was. This lifeless room with its small files was a crude catalog system for my life. Here were written the actions of my every momen, big and small, in a det…

Malacca, Marquis of Pombal

Just managed to make it back from Malacca. Went there for a research trip to help out with the history department with some reseach regarding the Chinese religion(s). Life is quiet there, unlike in Singapore, where the pace is so fast. Though I'm quite used to it, I can't help but feel that life there is that tranquil... But it doesn't mean that I got to get away from my mainstream work at all. For all your information, Malacca was once a trading port of Portugal... and that name reminded me of the word 'Empire' and the both of them combined together reminded me of one module I'm taking this semester: HY2245 Empires, Colonies and Imperialism. Particularly so as this is the mid-term break and I have an essay to do by the end of it and best of all, this essay required me to watch this movie called 'The Mission' which illustrates some sort of dichotemy between 'God' and 'Gold' in the process of establishing empires. Particularly so, since t…

Johari Square as of 21/2/2005

Arena(known to self and others) cheerful, confident, energetic, knowledgeable, proudBlind Spot(known only to others) bold, clever, dependable, extroverted, friendly, giving, helpful, idealistic, independent, kind, observant, organised, religious, responsive, self-assertive, spontaneousFaƧade(known only to self) intelligentUnknown(known to nobody) able, accepting, adaptable, brave, calm, caring, complex, dignified, happy, ingenious, introverted, logical, loving, mature, modest, nervous, patient, powerful, quiet, reflective, relaxed, searching, self-conscious, sensible, sentimental, shy, silly, sympathetic, tense, trustworthy, warm, wise, wittyAll Percentagesable (0%)accepting (0%)adaptable (0%)bold (33%) brave (0%)calm (0%)caring (0%)cheerful (16%) clever (16%) complex (0%)confident (50%) dependable (33%) dignified (0%)energetic (16%) extroverted (50%) friendly (33%) giving (16%) happy (0%)helpful (16%) idealistic (16%) independent (33%) ingenious (0%)intelligent (0%)introverted (0%)kind

ACTS in action - spirit and water

'I will never become a Christian, and I'll never open that Bible to read what is written.'

That's what I used to say to everyone a few years ago.

'I entered NUS as a non-Christian, and I will leave NUS as a non-Christian.'

This is what I told my friend a few months ago.

'Oh man, if there is really such a God, please make them stop talking.'

That's what I secretly prayed when people shared Christ with me a few months back.

'I believed in You and I want to receive You into my life as my Saviour today.'

This is what I said 2 months back...

Around 8 months back, on the 26th of June, marked the beginning of my incredible spiritual journey, when I got to know a bunch of people... whom I didn't expect will become my spiritual brothers and sisters one day. But the walk was not an easy one, at least for three who were constantly reaching out to me, trying to open my heart so that I can hear the calling of God.

And we 'ran marathons in cafes and fast …

Matthias

I came across this story when I was in the school library searching for some stuff:

There once was a man named George Thomas, pastor in a small New England
town. One Easter Sunday morning he came to the Church carrying a rusty, bent,
old bird cage, and set it by the pulpit. Eyebrows were raised and, as if in
response, Pastor Thomas began to speak..."I was walking through town yesterday
when I saw a young boy coming toward me swinging this bird cage. On the
bottom of the cage were three little wild birds, shivering with cold and
fright. I stopped the lad and asked, "What you got there, son?" "Just some old
birds," came the reply.
"What are you gonna do with them?" I asked.
"Take 'em home and have fun with 'em," he answered. "I'm gonna tease 'em
and pull out their feathers to make 'em fight. I'm gonna have a real good
time." "But you'll get tired of those birds sooner or later. What will you
do?"…

Post Valentine, Pre Term Break

So, Friendship Day, or more commonly known as Valentine Day is over for this year and it will be another 363 days before we see the next one, hopefully so. This season for love has also allowed to reflect and evaluate my own friendship with other people. Or rather, I begin to think about some of the 'wrongs' that have been done to me. I inevitably start linking everything to the word 'forgiveness'. One of the weekly wisdoms for this week says this:

When you forgive, the debt doesn't just go away. You absorb the debt. That's why forgiveness is so hard.

And Christnote gave a very good analogy to demonstrate this. Say you lend a person one thousand dollars, but suppose that when the time comes for the loan to be repaid that person is unable to repay you. If you forgive that person of his debt, then that person no longer owes you anything. By forgiving, you forfeited the money—you absorbed the debt. Likewise, when you forgive other people, you inevitably absorb the i…

Le Valentino Desu

So, in less than an hour away, it will be Valentine Day, or rather, I prefer to call it Friendship Day, sounds more universal. Before I carry on, let's wish all my readers a happy Friendship Day, and may God bless you all with a fruitful day with your friends (or loved ones).

Now, recent days have been quite inspiring. On Saturday (I know I posted on Sunday), I actually learnt something about love and friendship based on the following proverb:

A friend loves at all time and a brother is born for adversity. - Proverbs 17:17

In the coming of Friendship Day, have you ever thought about what's friendship all about? There was a competition for the best definition of friend in (I think) Britain. And from some of the entries, a friend is one who understands our silence, empathise with us, multiplies joy and divide grief and comes in when the whole world has walked out. In other words, the love of a true friend is constant and a true friend is someone who will love us for who we are and…

15th day of CNY

Today is the last day of CNY. Whoa, how exciting....

Just now, I was reading a blog of one of my sisters in church. She just set up a blog (or rather, I was the one who helped her to set up and the job's not done =P) and has blogged in a total of four posts in a space of like two days. The testimonies in the blog is very encouraging and really refreshed me quite a lot. In case you are curious, the address is as such: http://petrina-dreamland.blogspot.com. But she quoted a verse in her first post which kinda striked me, partly because that's the verse I was thinking about when I was showering, just before I decided to log on and take a look at how my friends have been progressing in their blogging careers.

I pray that you may be active in sharing your faith, so that you will have a full understanding of every good thing we have in Christ.
- Philemon 6

Well, I dun wanna talk too much about this, cos what I wanna say has already been said by this friend of mine. But in case some of…

Void

It sounds so strange, but today, I heard Ellson talking to this friend of ours, asking him to look into the sky tonight and get a feel how small and seemingly insignificant are we. And I decided that while I was walking home just now, to take a look at the sky, just a look, and yeah, we are so small..., mankind is just so small within the macrocosm of this universe. Just exactly two months ago, I would look at the sky, and get the feeling of emptiness and void within me. I wouldn't admit then, and I wouldn't even be bothered about it then.

But, friends, sometimes we reached home after a day of 'fun' and even so, we still feel a sense of void and emptiness in our heart, as if everything has lost its meaning and purpose. Sometimes, we got what we want but we do not feel the sense of achievement. Have you had that kind of feeling before?

But bear in mind, it's not a question of whether you are bored or not, but a question of whether do you feel fulfilled or not, it'…

A New One

Finally, I managed to squeeze out the time today for a run after coming back from school. It was a good run and I decided that I should do this more frequently whenever I can find the time.

Today also managed to sit down to do up the unit blog which I have been wanting to set up for the unit. Here's the address: http://hopenus-a.blogspot.com To the brothers and sisters, it's a site for us to post announcements, pictures, testimonies and teachings. It is done so that those are leaving us soon, like Claire and Kaiqin (though she's only for a while) are able to keep track of the developments here back in Singapore, and of course, also serves as a site for us to check out on the latest events.

I just recently heard a joke and decided to share with my readers. You may have or may not heard of it before, but I decided to post it anyway.

Q: What brand of shampoo do 1) Catholics, 2) Apostle Paul, 3)People in heaven and 4) Jesus use?

A: 1) Head and Shoulder, 2) Rejoice, 3) No More Te…

Times of trials

I recently started reflecting on some verses and found the following:

Not only so, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance, perseverance, character; and character, hope.
Romans 5:3-4


In times of trials, in times of sufferings, probably it would be the hardest times for us, probably the darkest hours of our life. But what are we going to do about it? Some of us would probably give up the struggle and let ourselves waste away. Some may take on the fight and, therefore, persevere on. Indeed, it is only through perseverance that we build on our character and grow, as it is said, 'character is built through temptations, tests and trials.'Without all these sufferings we experience, we certainly would still live on in our own comfortable zone. And because we grow through perseverance, we develop hope through our growth too. So to all my friends, why not look at the bright side and embraces and rejoice in our sufferings, of course, we…

Ask and thy shall be given

My post today has nothing to do with 'Ask and thy shall be given' but if you ask, you should be given... by... I dun know who.

Had my first nation building tutorial today. The topic of the discussion was as such: "The 'imagined' Singapore nation is an institutional construct that has little basis in history or relevance in an increasingly globalized world. The belated initiatives of the ruling PAP government to inspire a Singaporean nationalism should be seen, not as a reactive response to preserve indigenous identity and culture, but as a rear-guard attempt to insure the government’s ongoing hegemony over the state." Well, I must say that the class is quite dynamic in the discussion and I had fun listening to all their views, except for this girl who keeps criticising on the current institutions, which of course includes other organisations as suggested in the questions as well. I could not really tahan her criticisms cos it was quite obvious that although sh…