Race harmony cannot be enforced. It comes naturally when the different communities are comfortable with each other without the nagging fear of each other. Over 30 years ago this was the case. However relationship started deteriorating when the government instituted policies and practices as well as preached propaganda that sowed seeds of distrust. Many are affected but others remain positive to the goodness of human kindness and the sharing of each others celebrations. The Deepavali celebration yesterday at my brother-in-law's sister's house exemplify the racial unity that still exist in Malaysia in spite of the negative impressions we read in the media.
One really wonder is there a need for this 1Malaysia thingy. It is an admission that race relations had been mismanaged the past 30 years that we are reminded that a glue is needed to patch the various races up. But what I experienced yesterday is proof we don't need this 'glue'. Open house is an authentic Malaysian culture.
My bro-in-law is Indian Hindu and every year it is the tradition of his family to invite relatives and friends to the home of one of their siblings where their 83 year old mother (she was Chinese adopted into a Hindu family) stays. So when we arrived at noon I found myself among a very multiracial group. There were Indian Hindus, Indian Christian, Chinese Buddhists, Chinese Christians and Malay Muslims. We had a common meal that is pork free and those who drank beer and whiskey consumed away from our Muslim guests without offending them. The time spent was filled with gaiety and jabbing each other. We were among friends. One of them, an American Indian Hindu marveled at the ease we converse on various topics. He is thinking of migrating here. There was an Australian lady in our midst too. The gathering yesterday can be considered an international event based on the makeup of those present.
The only disturbance was the sudden downpour around 2pm but then most of the guests had already eaten off the banquet tables laid our in the driveway. We left shortly and look forward to the next party in 2013. Sandakan anyone?