Friday, November 29, 2013

OF AVATARS and the RAPE OF BUJANG VALLEY #1

OF AVATARS and the RAPE of BUJANG VALLEY #1
by azly rahman
In one of my classes in Cultural Philosophies, I had used James Cameron's movie "Avatar" as a stimulus to discuss the idea of cultural hegemony, colonization, and destruction ... the Army of the Empire raping the Naa'vi tribe and how the tree of life was uprooted, and how the past was destroyed by the philosophy of the mechanistic, scientistic world of the war machinery working in cahoot with science for corporations and industry.

I read a newsreport of the possible rape of the Lembah Bujang Archeological site, by a Malaysian real estate company/housing developer reportedly in the process of demolishing an 8th. century site that has the ruins of an 8th. century temple. 


I was upset the entire day, I am still upset. http://www.freemalaysiatoday.com/category/nation/2013/11/29/8th-century-temple-site-in-bujang-valley-demolished/
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8th century temple site in Bujang Valley demolished

B Nantha Kumar | November 29, 2013 
A NGO is urging the Tourism and Culture Ministry to stop a housing developer from demolishing remnants of ancient temples in Bujang Valley and to preserve the area. 



PETALING JAYA: A housing developer has demolished several temples sites, including an 8th century heritage site, in Bujang Valley, Kedah, and the authorities are not taking any action to stop the act.

Non-governmental organisation Bujang Valley Study Circle chairman V Nadarajan has urged the Tourism and Culture Ministry to stop the developer from further destroying the area and preserve the site.

Nadarajan said several ancient temples, called Candi, had been demolished in the last few years to make way for development.

He said the developer had now demolished the most famous 8th century temple remnants known as Candi Sungai Batu estate or Bujang Valley site 11.

Nadarajan, who is a lawyer, urged Tourism and Culture Minister Mohamed Nazri Abdul Aziz to stop the demolition process.

“The temple in Sungai Batu estate is the most famous tourism spot in Bujang Valley, but now it is gone,” he said.

Nadarajan, who has written a book on the Bujang Valley heritage site, said the authorities had failed to stop the demolition.

“The National Heritage Department, Museum, Kedah state tourism committee and Sungai Petani Municipal Council should have protected the sites but they have turned a blind eye to the demolition work,” he added.

Area is packed with historical artifacts

He said that he was not sure when the Candi Sungai Batu was demolished but believes it was done earlier this week. He only realised it was demolished when he visited the Candi two days ago.
“This entire area is packed with historical artifacts. Most of them are hidden away from our view. This particular temple site is famous with tourists.

“The developer is greedy and willing to pay the fine for the demolishing the temples (and its remnants) because they will make a huge profit from the housing project.

“I am surprised why the Malaysian government is so careless in Bujang Valley when countries like Indonesia and Cambodia are proud of their heritage sites,” said Nadarajan.

The Bujang Valley is an archeological site and excavation had revealed jetty remains, iron-smelting areas and a clay-brick monument dating back 110AD making it the oldest man-made structure to be recorded in South-east Asia.

“It is the most important entry port before Malacca (15th century) and Singapore (19th century). Bujang Valley has been a mid-way hub to Arab nations, India and China,” said Nadarajah.
“We should be proud of the heritage and not give the site to profit-minded individuals,” he added.
Nadarajan urged the ministry to issue a stop-work order to the developer and preserve the remaining sites.
ENDS  -
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if this is true, this is an ultimate madness of anti-intellectual cultural destruction of one of the world's most important historical sites. the Talibans blew off the 1500-year old Buddha statue in Bamiyan when the took power in Afghanistan. and now i am reading this? Authorities concerned - be more cultured and start looking into this please! -- ar
 

Malay culture and its culturedness owe so much to the Hindu-Buddhist tradition that these historical sites to be destroyed by some quick and get-rich-quick capitalist gains is just pure madness. These sites are valuable for children of the next generation to study the richness of their heritage, and the deeply meaningful philosophy of the nusantara -- one almost lost with the advent and colonization of tribalistic arabistic culture. Wake up, Malaysians -- start looking into these. you have destroyed enough of the country, deforestate it, build modern structures that do not have much cultural value. Our children are lost, culturally. -- ar
 
is there now a covert systematic program to erase the Hindu-Buddhist foundations of Malay history, a demolition of a fortress of archeological-spiritual-construction of foundational Malay-ness, to replace it with what?

With the Interlok issue, the criminalization and dehumanization of Malaysians of Tamil origin, the UiTM gene-mapping project, the Ethnic Studies module, the TITAS (Islamic and Southeast Asia compulsory university foundation course for all universities), the emergence of race-based ultra-nationalistic hate groups, the rise of even more ultra Islamic fundamentalism, and now the "symbolic act" of a demolition of an eighth century world heritage site -- what can we say about the shape of Malaysian historicizing to come?

History is memory, we must be reminded. And the memory of a people, a philosophy, a paradigm of living, and the evolution of the practice of ethics lies in architecture of the past ---- if it is not purposely destroyed to erase such memory and to destroy dignity --ar

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

What would you say about historical sites destroyed in Makkah and Medina?

Anonymous said...

Land is a state matter ....The District Office must be nuts not to be aware of such an important site in the district. Find out which State Govt considered and approved this project and petition for reconsidration.

Don't blame the Federal Government for this situation.

Anonymous said...

It is mindless vandalism by the greedy developers but what are the authorities in power doing about this? Have they spoken up about this? Have they issued a stern warning to the developer or threatened them with a fine or better still, a jail sentence. The developers should be made to built this candi back stone by stone.

jagadish said...

Some people who want to earn money and property at the shortest time do not care for heritage or historical or religious importance go haywire .And Some misguided people and their religious heads narrow down their thinking and feel their religion is only true religion and other religions should not exist. Peace and harmony in the society is lost.
Hatred sows a seed in the minds of people resulting in terrorism , vandalism of religious places and heritage building and monuments.They show their feeling through bombing and senseless killing of innocent people. It is the time we educate younger generation on love , peace and respecting others feelings and rights to prevent disintegration culture ,universal friendship and peace.
M.C.Jagadish.(jmangadu7)

Anonymous said...

Well,ANON up there, this is not about race or religion as the Candi were built by the Hindu Malays then. This is about GREED. Go check who's the developer.


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