Sankofa #14

Sankofa #14

I started writing this musing at 5am this morning. I had a few ‘strong’ reactions to my last Wednesday musing, especially my feelings about the death of Queen Elizabeth. I am not surprised and expected that to happen. As I have stated last Wednesday “I mean no disrespect for the life and memory of Queen Elizabeth II and for the grief of her family.” Everyone has the right to react (or feel) whatever they want about the late Queen. However, for many the issue is not about the late Queen as an individual but who and what she represents (monarchy). There were many talks about her ‘devotions to service and duty’. For many who have been colonised they see her ‘devotions and duty’ was primarily to the Empire. Unfortunately, she as a person and her role can’t be so easily divided as much as some people want. She carried in her role the baggage of colonisation, annexation, pillaging, theft, slavery, just to name a few. I found this article that might interest some of you.[1] The article is about ‘Five ways the monarchy has benefited from colonialism and slavery’. Don’t, if you are tempted, to tell me that’s the past and they should just get over it.

What Lenses Are You Using
It’s not really a secret that we all see, feel, smell, and hear things differently. If you have ever sat through a course in philosophy, you know that our perception of what is ‘real’ is based not on what something actually is, but what we say it is. In short, our preconceptions can dramatically alter the way we perceive the world. There is a saying attributed to the prominent writer Anaïs Nin that reflects this idea: “We don’t see the world as it is, we see it as we are.”[2]

What does it mean? We see the world through our lenses. For example, if we have pink coloured glass over our eyes we will see world pink, similarly whatever our perceptions are, we see the world accordingly. It means that we project what we know and believe onto the world. We don’t see things in an objective way (whatever that might mean). We see things through how our life has shaped us.

It means we each have our own particular and unique worldview. Depending on where you grew up, and things that you have been taught, and what has happened to you and around you – these things form your perspectives. The way you see things and feel about things may not be as another individual would view them. Who is correct? Maybe neither or both.

Our attitude and emotional state impact our perspectives on life significantly. Personality, attitude, and emotional state all impact how we view life and experience life. I hope this help to explain why different people have different reactions to the death of Queen Elizabeth II. Honestly, I find ‘the defenders of the queen’ interesting. Just like those who think that they need to defend God’. Does God need our defending?

October 1st – International Day of Older Persons.
On December 14th, 1990, the United Nations General Assembly declared October 1st to be the International Day of Older Persons.

Do you know there are currently around 700 million people over the age of 60. It is predicted that by 2050, this figure will have risen to 2 billion. These figures have prompted a lot of attention and various initiatives have been started to try and address the problems that will arise.  

This coming Sunday we are celebrating the International Day of Older Persons with a lunch after both morning worship services. If you are planning to join us, please let the HUB knows by Friday. Please try to join us. I would love you to see you at the lunch – no age barriers.

Ageism is a real issue in the society and even in the church. I have written a piece on Ageism in the October issue of MUC magazine. I encourage you to read it.

… in the meantime, blessed be.

Rev Swee Ann Koh
28th September 2022

[1][2] It’s also attributed to a Talmudic idea about dream analysis.