Tag Archives: religious

Indonistan

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Even though it is not a direct cause, the governor election in Jakarta which has happened last week has something to do with the re-activation of this blog. Once the result of the vote was out, it is difficult not to have any opinion about it.

You’re not a residence of DKI Jakarta, Byq. What does it do to you?

You know what? Even if it does not affect me directly, you have to remember that I spent years of my university years in Jakarta. I have friends, family members, and relatives working, and living in Jakarta, and it definitely affects them and their lives. So, even if it doesn’t affect me directly, this voting result does affect people that I know.

But it does.

It does affect me directly. It does affect me in a personal level as so many attacks were thrown to people of minority groups like myself. It is not only about the defeat of a governor candidate, it is the defeat of progress.

Months ago you thought that Indonesia (or at least Jakarta) has changed a bit. You kind of hoped that finally you can start living in a country where people are no longer politically driven by their religious fanaticism. You kind of hope that for once, in the capital city — where you really put your hope of progression of mankind on — you could see how faith in humanity could be restored.

But of course, you shouldn’t be surprised, should you?

This has happened all around the world, why wouldn’t it happen in Indonesia too? The rise of the far right radicals — which in Indonesia is represented by PKS and FPI (and any organisation similar to them).

Some friends has been joking about the day when Indonesia one day would be transformed into Indonistan. A place where the government will no longer be free of religious intervention, a place where the leaders are more afraid of being called infidels than being fair and just. A place where minority groups will once more being oppressed, and bullied. That joke though… is no longer funny.

It reviving the refugee nightmare in me. It reminds me the day when my parents were about to send me out of the country to save myself from people who will harm us — just because we are minorities. It is basically a reminder that until today, or maybe forever, I would never be welcomed completely in Indonistan Indonesia.

Some people are still trying to console themselves by saying that this is not the end of the world — that Ahok might still have a place somewhere in Indonesia’s politics. Well… maybe. But really? I think it’s just anticlimactic. The country had the chance to bring the country into an overdrive with him… But… of course…

I am not in Jakarta right now. Heck, I am not even in Indonesia right now, and I am super glad that I am not. I am not feeling any patriotic right now, but why should I be? How could I be? I am sorry for those who are now stuck in Indonistan, and just don’t know how to get away from this sticky situation. I am just hoping that I would never have to come back… at least not while the country is still screwed like this…

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Making Sense of Money

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How do you know you have more money than sense?

Well… In the UK, one comedian said: When you buy a biography written by a fictional meerkat millionaire — who was invented in an advertising campaign.

In the tech world: When you actually drill a hole on your iPhone7 to make a earphone slot.

In Indonesia: You ask someone to magically double your money.

Byq… What the hell are you talking about?

As much as Indonesia is a predominantly Muslim country, there is a big percentage of people who believe in supernatural stuff — that is more cultural related than religion. Some people believe in local magical creatures, or superstitious old midwives’ tale. Some believe that other people possess supernatural powers.

We were once — or even until today– crazy about indigo kids. We loved it when some villagers claimed that their goat’s poo could help curing cancer. We were ecstatic when a kid sit on the table, smoking cigarettes and ramble something, pretending that they’re connecting to the spirit of the dead. And some believes that some people could double your money by keeping the money in a box, and pray over it.

You’re right, I am talking about that religious cult.

It surprised my parents that people could be THAT stupid. It surprised me that they were genuinely surprised to see how people could be THAT stupid. I mean, they have lived longer than I do, I always assumed they have seen more stupid people in their lifetime than I have. Apparently not… Longer life doesn’t guarantee fuller experience.

It surprised my father that people THAT stupid could have a lot of money. I told him that some people have more sense than money. And money can’t buy common sense. He’s happy with my answer.

It surprised my mother that there are thousands of people actually believe this, and still believe in the leader even after all his lies are now open in public. I told her that it’s what a brainwash do to people. The difference is that if the number of believers is in thousands it is called a cult, and if it is in billions, it is called a religion. She’s not amused — doesn’t matter, because I do 😀

And you know what surprised me? What surprised me is that one of the political leader in Indonesia — a public figure people seen as an educated person, that can be trusted — a member of a political party in Indonesia believed that shit too. Not only that he was once endorsed this cult leader as “National Treasure”, he even involved in the cult, and be a member of it. It is amazing that every time I go back and visit Indonesia, I can always find something that is so pathetic it is amusing.

It never ceases to keep us entertained.

Anyway, if you really don’t know why believing that anyone could double your money while keeping it inside the box is stupid, let me explain to you how money actually work. The simple way. Just because I am feeling generous today.

The history of money started when people start trading. People used to bartered their goods with other people, but then barter system gets really difficult as you would have to find someone who wants your goods and has the goods that you want at the same time. And they have to be in the same value, so whoever trading could get a fair trade.

People then invented money system. It helps trading and valuing goods and services. The money we know today is printed by the government, and circulated by the national bank. So, if the government printed X amount of money, that will be the money that is in the circulation. IF anyone claim they can double the amount of money you put in the box… how can he do it without changing the amount of money circulated by the national bank? No they can’t, because they can’t print their own money.

Simple logic.