Holding a simplistic view that faith should be kept out of politics is equivalent to saying there is no need for ethics in nation building, says Ronald Benjamin.
The government’s move to impose conditions on religious practices such as the use of the Malay version bible shows us that the path towards a civilised, sincere, and honest dialogue of reason and faith is an uphill battle, observes Ronald Benjamin.
Many are searching for clarity in a
materialistic world confused by permissiveness, blatant consumerism,
unbridled consumption and casino-market economics on one side while
poverty, violence and hate stare at us on the other. We can make a
difference – and collectively, if enough undertake this commitment;
then a critical mass could provide the tipping point for new
possibilities, says K Haridas. We have nevertheless to start with ourselves and what
better time than now.
The practice of having open houses during religious festivals has become so much a part of Malaysian life and culture that it is almost unthinkable for many Malaysians not to have them. Although such social interaction may not necessarily be the solution to the problems surrounding ethnic relations and national solidarity in the country, as it is often touted as such by government leaders, it certainly provides a golden opportunity for Malaysians of various ethnic, cultural and religious stripes to mingle with one another and, perhaps, learn a thing or two about those from different backgrounds.