Thursday, December 29, 2005

Understanding Religion

Note: A financial consultant called me up the other day, told me of a product that can bring 15% interest per annum. As a bumiputera in Malaysia, guaranteed unit trust like the ASB gives at least 7% a year and savings within Tabung Haji gives at least 5% a year. Also, this investment is in real estate, and because I'm in this line, I can foresee real estate earnings in Malaysia within the next 2-3 years, and it's not on a positive note at all. Since he's very adamant to see me, I think he'll shut up when he can't convince me coz' I'm very sensitive to investing money on risky ventures.

It's not really my liking to write about religion, coz' three topics that I definitely do not want to get involved in any debates are about religion, politics and female vs male. However, this time I have to because I think that there are times when the respect for other people's religion need to be really appreciated or else you might just end up depressing someone.

In my workplace, and in some friend's workplace, religious issue has came up. Because I'm a muslim and so far stories I've heard from my friends who are muslims, therefore the only thing I can talk about in this post is about Islam. Nothing too distressful like those news/rumours happening in Iraq, but still, there is lack of respect from what I see.

Issue 1: One colleague, during the fasting month, was required to attend a meeting and site evaluation with the directors in another state. This was on a Saturday. Reaching there, they had to walk several miles for the evalution under the hot sun and while yes, we do need to do work as usual even during fasting month, but these people really have not even the least decency to at least acknowledge that our friend here is fasting. At lunch, all was called and have had food and drinks served. Being really thirsty, my colleague still fasted till Maghrib. But he ended up in bed after that till midnight.

Issue 2: One driver, a malay, is asked to drive the boss around no matter the day, no matter the time. He has missed Friday prayers many times and only prays about once in five weeks. This is from a boss who does not have respect for another person's religion.

Issue 3: Top management people, in a bid to secure a deal, demands that a Muslim marketing employee join in the dinner at a restaurant. Problem is that the meal ordered is non-halal, and was pressured to join in the dinner so as not to ridicule the 'guests'.

This happened in just the past 3 months. I'm not saying this only happens to muslim. I'm sure there are other issues whereby a muslim manager mistreat his/her buddhist staff or christian staff. The fact of the matter is that I think it's high time that everyone is given a basic understanding of religions around the world, so that we know what is right and what is wrong.

To mistakenly insult a culture can still be forgiven, but it's harder when it's a religion as it's more close to heart and faith.


Kuek said...

I couldn't agree more. It's all about respect and understanding. No matter how important or how rich, we must always respect other religion. And on top of that, it's not just religion, it's people we have to learn to respect. We should respect everyone around us, maids, gardeners, boss of ramli burger stalls... They are all there to do their part and we can't live without them.

Javalier said...

Yep, I didn't touch about individuals in person, but you're right. Even the drain cleaners contribute so much to our lives.