Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Sinners Guide to Reading the News and The Agenda of Inclusiveness

Pick your Agenda. Or in the new world of data-mining your internet history,
the Agenda will pick you. He he he.

As part of his mandatory community service to pay for all his past sins, this sinner is compiling some rules for reading and watching the news. It is a one-size fit-all baseball cap to fine tune your brain in reading and distilling the vast 'information' tsunami pouring out of the newspapers, internet and television...

Rule 1: Facts are not Neutral. It sits in an Agenda.
Rule 2: Yes. Everyone has an Agenda. Even Julian Assange. 
Rule 3: If you are reading or watching any particular News, you are likely the target of the Agenda.
Rule 4: Don’t just watch the News. Read the stories behind the News. And the stories behind the stories.
Rule 5: Business News – There is no such thing as pure price discovery (there never was, to be quite honest), only price propaganda for the Agenda.
Rule 6: Don’t react. Think about your reaction. This will scupper the Agenda.
Rule 7: When did mainstream become mainstream? But both mainstream and alternative news sites have their own Agenda. 
Rule 8: Advertizing and Psycho-technics - News are advertisements for the Agenda, and driven by the Agenda. 
Rule 9: There are no real News Reporters, per se. Only News Makers. So even Journalism advances an Agenda.
Rule 10: So what is the Agenda then, Mr. Smarty-pants?

Yes, sunshine. Even these guys have an agenda (or agendas),

Good question. Some agendas are well documented and follows the normal grain of ideology, race and religion. You know... right wing, left wing, centrist, nationalists, patriotism, Atheism, religion, race, socialism, communism, capitalism and all other sorts of -isms that mankind has created to mirror their views and unfortunately divide humanity. 

I too have an agenda. I am just not too sure what it is. I am a Muslim, I am a Malay, so there are some beliefs that I lean towards. I like to eat. I don't like conflict. I can be lazy sometimes. I have diabetes. Like it or not, your entire person influences your thoughts and aspirations. I like to write. I like to sketch. I love music. Even Kylie Minogue and Abba (I think Abba is so underrated). All this forms the foundation on which I write this Almanac. But above all this (I would like to believe, I may be fooling myself after all. I don't discount that possibility), I am most fond of the teachings and experiences from the Sufi Masters and friends that I am aware of. For however I define what I am, the inclusiveness taught to me by these fine fellows helps me break down the walls that we sometimes prop up because of our own origin, upbringing and social, ideological and religious prejudices.

So people may talk to you about this Islam and that Islam, this Muslim and that non-Muslim. But things are not as simple as that. If you are a Muslim, and if you believe that the Prophet Muhammad (s.a.w.s.) is the Seal of the Prophets, the Prophet for the End of Time and God's anointed Mercy to all the World(s) and all the Creatures, then a sense inclusiveness must play some part in your faith. And this sense must encompass all mankind, whatever their piety, creed, race or religion. And this also includes the animals and the natural environment of the world.

I guess this is my agenda (for now). Inclusiveness. It is not about agreeing about everything. It is about agreeing to sometimes disagree. Isn't this what the Prophet Muhammad (s.a.w.s) has taught you, o' Muslims? O' Arabs?

wa min Allah at-taufiq

Hate has no place in Islam
Love will show the Way

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