Thursday, May 23, 2013

Living in unity : cultural understanding - the way forward!

Salaam to all lovely readers,

Hi all,

What is unity? What is unity stands for? Very often, we hear from our own people who say, “Malaysia is a unite country.” As for me, I believe that there is unity in Malaysia but because unity can’t be defined within strict parameters, we often “see” unity. Why? One learned person said to me – there is no unity in Malaysia, there is only tolerance. Is it true? Come to think of it, there might be some truth (based on my amateur and inexperience observation). Look at certain people talking to the press; they constantly remind us of one’s race and religion. As a unite citizens, why is it very hard for us to practice what we’ve said? Some people even openly object to the term, “Bangsa Malaysia.” How often do we hear the word “muhibbah” nowadays?

I had the opportunity to participate in the Orientation Course for Federal Officers from Sabah, Sarawak and Federal Territory of Labuan, from 2 until 7 March, 2010, which was organized by the Division of Unity and National Integration. This course was organized to expose participants about the purpose of unity and integration among Malaysian. During the course, many ideas have been expressed on how we can move the country to a higher level of integration. From what I’ve observed, many of prescriptions proposed are simplistic and superficial. Having said that, they do not reflect any in-depth understanding of the issues involved. More serious analyzes are needed to be done. But overall, I enjoyed the course!

Standing together with one voice over certain issues can be defined as unity. But I think helping out each other in terms of trouble is also a form of unity. It is the essence that matters, not the outward appearance. It is a very important element in ensuring harmonious relationship among each other.

Unity can only be achieved through more time. With time, we will start to share a common history and only then can we begin to see that being divided only serve to our disadvantage. Apart from that, unity is when all work to achieve and maintain equality. If we work towards equality and maintain, where is the source of motivation and satisfaction. This is a basic human instinct. All in all, how good and pleasant it is when we, Malaysian, live together in unity!

Anyway, below are some of the photos I took during 2011 Sabah State Level Pesta Kaamatan held at Hongkod Koisaan KDCA, Penampang. I saw all races, all colors, aren't they beautiful? Let us learn from one another, celebrate our unity in diversity, and work respectfully together for the well-being of the community and the world.

Kotobian om kounsikaan do Tadau Tagayo Kaamatan kumaa toinsanan tobpinai ngaawi
Kulintangan (Picture above).

This was first introduced into west Sabah by the Bruneis but it is also traditionally used by the Bajaus and some Dusun/Kadazan people. It is usually played on festive occasions, such as weddings and religious ceremonies, where it is often accompanied by other traditional gongs. The instrument consists of a set of about eight to nine small brass kettle gongs. Each sounds a different pitch when struck. The gongs are arranged horizontally in a row on a low wooden bed-like frame. The player sits down on the floor in front of the gongs and beats them with two small wooden mallets.

Make-up and preparation.
Sumazau dance. This type of dance is one of the most well known traditional dances in Sabah as well as throughout Malaysia. It belongs to the Kadazan Penampang tribe.

This ritual dance serves varied functions such as thanksgiving for bountiful paddy planting and harvesting, prayer against evil spirits, honouring the spirits as well as to cure illness.

Youngsters of Tuaran wearing contemporary traditional costume.
Dusun Lotud community, Tuaran.

The popular dance of the lotud is the sumayau (also known mongigol tuaran)its ritual dance performance during magavau rituals.

The Dusun Lotud are one of sub group kadazandusun,the lotud ,who live mainly at tuaran district, are among a traditional rice produser of Sabah.

Dancers performing the Dusun Liwan traditional dance.
Dancers in Dusun Liwan traditional costume.
Under the efforts of the Kadazandusun Cultural Association Sabah, the standardized Kadazandusun language is of the Bundu-liwan dialect spoken in Bundu and Liwan. Dusun Bundu-liwan's selection was based on it being the most mutually intelligible, when conversing with other Dusun or Kadazan dialects. [1]

Sincerely yours.

NOTES: Visit Kauluan Express on Facebook to see more photos. 


Anonymous said...

Hi there, very nice write-up based on your experience. I would love to visit Sabah one day and witness the beauty of Kaamatan Festival. Happy Kaamatan to you in advance.


Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for the comment. I take it as a compliment. I hope you will have the opportunity to visit Sabah, one fine day. Regards.