[About this blog] Inspired by local soccer player Mike Lim during my rookie reporter days at Singapore Polytechnic, I set up this blog in August 2002. I feel that blogging is a novel platform to document interesting facets of my life and my thoughts on certain issues. [Email blogger] ephraim@singnet.com.sg

Friday, October 20, 2006

[Ramadan Prayer at Blk 707 Bedok Reservoir]
1. I was invited to meet the Muslim residents of Bedok Reservoir last night after their evening prayers at the void deck of Blk 707. Every Ramadan, they gather nightly under the leadership of Haji Marzuki. Covering the floor with mats, the men and boys sat in front; the ladies sat at the back, separated by a low curtain. The Residents Committee (RC) under Woon Tek Fah has been very supportive of the group. In fact, the RC applied for the permit on the group's behalf even before they asked for it.

2. Hj Marzuki introduced me to the gathering. He thanked the RC members for their support and remarked what a great blessing it was to have racial and reigious harmony in Singapore. Only with harmony can there be development and improvement in the lives of our people. He emphasized the importance of tolerance and a spirit of 'give and take'. I was very touched when he said that my overseas visits had brought benefits to the people of Singapore.

3. I thanked Haji for his leadership, adding that the harmony we enjoyed was very precious. While we had no control over what went on elsewhere in the world, here in Singapore, we can look after one another and protect what we have. I then presented a few boxes of dates and wished everyone peace, happiness and good health. Nearby, a Chinese temple group celebrated 'jiu huang ye' which takes place every year in the ninth month of the Chinese calendar. The leader had joined me in my meeting with the Muslim prayer group. I went home last night feeling cheered and uplifted. What we sometimes take for granted in our society is so rare in the world.


Blogger kora tai said...

I was delighted to read that you blog. In a way, you kind of added the credibility of bloggers. I like the idea better than MPs 'hip hopping' because unless they did a decent hip-hop, they really look like trying too hard and wanna-bes. I sure hope you can write personal views on anything topics rather than as a MP doing 'your job'.

Anyway, your comments on harmony is really very true. We cannot take anything for granted and we must respect each other, regardless of race or religion.

I enjoyed most of these harmonious moments while at the airport recently. We were sending my husband off for a business trip. We noticed many people were sending off their families and loved ones. There were ang mohs, Indians etc and made me realised that no matter which part of the world we came from or what race do we belong to, we have families and loved ones so dear to us. We are humans and all the same!

In this case, I would like to wish everyone a Happy Deepavali and Selamat Hari Raya.

**I read in the forum that there are no such words as "Deepa Raya" thus, it means nothing.

Saturday, October 21, 2006 11:49:00 am

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Prithee though, why is a permit even required to hold the sessions? To me, permission should almost be automatic.

I would have liked to hear the original quotes. I must say I am quite jealous of your interactions, but I think we're a bit too smug with regard to racial and religious harmony.

Sometimes I think we're actually lacking in interaction, and the currents of hate are only buried underneath (see for example, the racist blogger incidents). Tolerance does not equal understanding.

It is not an issue of "take for granted" - respect is a given. Why should we compare ourselves to wartorn countries. To me, we need to improve in terms of diffusion. The superficial date-giving and the mention of a Chinese temple group - as opposed to real, profound discussion, only makes me think that we have much to improve upon.

Saturday, October 21, 2006 7:15:00 pm


Post a comment

<< Home