IT is good news that the Malaysia Hindu Sangam, temple committees and non-governmental organisations have drafted guidelines for temples and devotees to ensure Hindu rituals are carried out in accordance with religious sanctity. I appreciate their fine effort.
This can help inculcate good religious practices and bring about positive and lasting changes among the younger generation. The coming Thaipusam celebration should see the start of real change.
To Hindus, Thaipusam is a “remembrance day” of Lord Murugan’s luminous wisdom and radiant insight.
The Atharva Vedas’ references to Lord Murugan go back to the first millennium BCE and the ancient Sangam period. He is also embraced as Subramanya, Shanmuga, Arumuga, Skanda, Guhan, Kumara and Kartikeya.
As Subramanya, he postulated five values that sometimes have been distorted. They are clarified here as some of them relate to the effort of MHS.
FIRST, is freedom to be right. There is neither absolute freedom nor freedom to be wrong. This suggests that knowledge is fundamental to be free and right;
SECOND, is positive thoughts. Only with positive thoughts, the short- and long-term memories are able to link and function as in “speaking up” and “moving on”;
THIRD, this is an ever-changing world. Children will not equal their forefathers, so children will need to learn from family history and spiritual teachings;
FOURTH, is to seek own effort. It is through effort that the transcendental importance of self is realised and both dreams and expectations of quality and excellence will become a reality; and,
FIFTH, is life-long learning. The environment is is said to affect mental health. Pollution of should be prevented. The use of polystyrene food packets and indiscriminate littering should avoided. Awareness of public health should be given importance. Sponsors distributing food in polystyrene packets should be responsible for the cleanliness of the environment.