How many times in your life are you able to save another life?
– Alex Soh, Professional Photographer, Initiator of The Rice Project and Project Road
Epoch Inspired Talks – CSR in Singapore: What’s the Next Lap? (Mark Your Calendar: 3rd Nov, 2016)
To Register: Go to http://inspired.epochtimes.today/; limited seating. Or email firstname.lastname@example.org
➡ Come to an inspiring evening with two distinguished speakers from Singapore’s charity enterprise arena.
�Speaker 1: Gerard Ee, civil servant and social services champion, who is known for his work in restoring public confidence in the NKF.
�Speaker 2: Alex Soh, professional photographer and founder of the charity initiatives Project Road and The Rice Project.
One of the few unique cultural enclaves in Singapore, Little India is also one of the most vibrant and colourful districts in Singapore.
Indeed, Little India is the heart of Singapore’s 353,000-strong Indian community, which makes up 9.2 percent of our population, according to the Singapore Department of Statistics.
Exploring Little India via the five-foot-way passages presents a spectacle for the senses. Smells of spices fill the air and colourful floral garlands will catch your eyes. Fragrant spices, Indian groceries, jasmine garlands, wood cravings, beautiful saris, and exotic gold jewellery are abundantly found in the stretches of shophouses along Serangoon Road. There are also magazine stalls selling Bollywood tabloids and women’s magazines from India.
This month, the entire stretch of Little India and Serangoon Road are lit to celebrate Deepavali, also known as the ‘Festival of Lights’. Colourful decors based on the various myths from Indian culture line the streets. The dynamic and dazzling night view of Little India during Deepavali festivities will certainly be a memorable experience not to be missed!
The Indian forefathers arrived since the colornal era. One of the Singapore’s first Indian fore founders was Narayana Pillai, who arrived in 1819 along with Sir Stamford Rafﬂes.
By the early 1900s, an Indian community had formed along Serangoon Road, and Cattle traders from India settled in the area in the 1940s. Little India has since continued to attract many of Singapore’s Indian immigrants.
Many streets in Little India bear the names of the famous individuals who once lived in the area. Dunlop Street and Clive Street were named after the European families who once stayed there in the 1840s. Belilios Lane and Belilios Road were named after the Calcuttaborn I.R. Belilios, a famous cattle-trader of the 1840s.
Famous shopping centres in Little India
Tekka Centre is located at 665 Buffalo Road, a road that was named as such because the area was once famous for its cattle slaughterhouses.
Previously known as Kandang Kerbau, Tekka Centre is a famous landmark in Little India. Tekka Centre is a food centre, wet market, and shopping mall rolled in one.
Tekka Centre’s basement holds a wet market that mostly sells fresh-produce. The first level houses the Tekka Centre Food Centre, where you can find stalls selling Indian, Malay, and Chinese food. You can savour Mutton briyani at Yakader Nasi Briyani (#01-259), and try a variety of vegetables, poultry and seafood dough fritters at Haji Johan Temasek India Rojak (#01-254).
On the 2nd level at Tekka Centre, you can find stores selling inexpensive traditional Indian clothes such as lehengas (a combination of a blouse, skirt and a long scarf), priced below $20. You can even find a few Tamil-speaking Chinese stall owners there.
Another of Little India’s most popular shopping centres is Mustafa Centre. Well-known to Singaporeans and tourists, Mustafa Centre is a 24-hour shopping complex located at 145 Syed Alwi Road.
At Mustafa, you can purchase practically everything and anything at near-bargain prices, including luggage bags, electronics, kitchen wares, watches, jewellery, traditional Indian apparel, cosmetics, toys, food and groceries, and souvenirs. Mustafa also provides other services such as VISA processing, and travel booking, and money changers.
Restaurants in Little India
Indian restaurants in Little India cater a variety of rich and flavourful cuisines from North to South Indian. One of the best places to indulge in authentic North and South Indian cuisine is the Banana Leaf Apolo, located at 56/58 Race Course Road.
Some of its signature dishes are fish head curry, chicken tikka masala (Chicken marinated in yogurt and spices), prawn pakora and biryanis served on traditional banana leaves, and you can finish your hearty meal with a refreshing cup of mango lassi (an Indian yogurt-based drink).
If its vegetarian cuisine you are looking for, the Ananda Bhavan Restaurant located at 58 Serangoon Road is one of the most famous Indian vegetarian restaurants in Singapore. Try some light Indian vegetarian dishes like appam (pancake made with rice batter and coconut milk), thosai (crepe made from rice batter and black lentils), naan (oven-baked flatbread), chapati (flat bread made with wheat flour) and puris (deep-fried Indian bread). These Tiffin dishes are served with aromatic gravy and various types of sambar (vegetarian curry).
One of the most interesting restaurants in Little India is the Jungle Tandoor Restaurant situated at 102 Serangoon Road, with its jungle and safari concept. Elephant, birds and giraffe status hang on the restaurant’s exterior, and its interior glows with neon lights, while the ceiling and the walls are decorated with leaves, tree branches, animals, and even Tarzan. The restaurant serves standard North Indian cuisines, including tandoori malasa, tandoori promfert, mutton kebab, Afghanistan chicken, as well as garlic naan and butter naan. The price of a meal starts from $20.
Komala Vilas Sweets and Savouries, located at 82 Serangoon Road, is the shop to visit for Indian sweet treats. The shop sells traditional Indian sweets such as gulab gamun (deep fried, spongy milky balls soaked in rose scented syrup), rava laddu (a sweet ball prepared with rava/semolina, sugar, milk and nuts) and barfi (sweet confectionery made with condensed milk and sugar).
Shopping in Little India
There are many sari shops offering exotic and colourful sari fabric in Little India, such as Haniffa Textiles, situated at 60 Serangoon Road. (Epoch Times Staff)
The sari, or saree, is the traditional dress of women in India. It is a strip of unstitched cloth that is draped over the body in various styles.
Buying new clothes for Indian festivals has always been a tradition, especially for Deepavali. Indian woman traditionally try to dress as beautifully as they can in their saris on Deepavali. Being a festival of light and colours, the saris chosen are typically brightly coloured as well, to celebrate the spirit of the festival, and they are commonly decorated with sequins, beads, and gold and silver threads.
There are many sari shops offering exotic and colourful sari fabric in Little India, such as Haniffa Textiles, situated at 60 Serangoon Road. The shop was crowded with shoppers choosing sari fabrics for the upcoming Deepavali festival when this reporter visited it.
According to one of the shop’s assistants, business at the shop is always extremely good during the festive season.
Sangam Textiles at 140 Dunlop St and Sri Ghanesh Textiles at 100 Serangoon Road offer a wide variety of richly-coloured saris from Japan and India. These textile shops usually provide customised tailoring work as well. A piece of sari can cost anywhere from below $20 up to a few thousands.
Indians love gold, and typically wear them during wedding and traditional festivals.
Indian goldsmiths came to Singapore from the late 1940s, and designed and hand-crafted pieces of gold jewellery that were sold in shophouses around Little India.
One of the more famous jewellery shops in Little India is the Abiraame Jeweller located at 69 Serangoon Road. The shop is a household brand name, and carries all type of gemstones, gold pieces and diamonds. It offers fashionable and traditional Indian jewellery.
GMT Jewellers at 72 Serangoon Road, and Meena Jewellers at 80 Serangoon Road are two well-known jewellery shops in Little India that sell intricate jewellery. Meena Jewellers was founded in 1968, and sells exquisite pieces including necklaces from Kolkata and semi-precious craft from Jaipur. It also supplies temple jewellery that is made to be worn during temple weddings.
Colourful bangles made of metal or plastic can also be found in Little India, for as little as a few dollars. Indians choose bangles to match the colour of their saris. Gold-plated bangles, glass bangles and wedding bangles, as well as chokers, earrings, wedding sets and temple jewellery are put on sale at MKM Costume Jewellery, situated at 165 Dunlop Street.
Though the shop opened just two years ago, business there is good, according to the shop’s supervisor, Rajesh, who is from India. He now has three shop staff working under him. Most of his customers are immigrants from India, but he sees many local Indian customers as well.
Business Then and Now in Little India
Many of the shops in Little India have been around for 2 – 60 years. Most of them are family businesses, passed down from their parents or grandparents who came from India and settled down in Singapore to open businesses.
However, since the opening of Mustafa Shopping Centre, some of these small shops have found it tough to carry on doing business in Little India.
Thandapani Co. Pte Ltd, situated at 124 Dunlop Street, has been in business for 60 years. The shop is a wholesaler and retailer of Indian groceries and spices, and its first owner came from India in 1917.
When asked how Mustafa had affected their business. Mrs Yana, the shop’s owner, said, “No, shopping centres are for those who are into modern culture. Those who want to go there, we cannot stop them. It is for those younger generations. The younger generations want to go to Mustafa because of the air-con there. For traditional shops like ours, we do not change anything.”
Anacaona Private Limited, located at 128 Dunlop Street, has been in business since 1962. The shop purveys a wider range of products such as medicinal products, health and beauty items, prayer items, handicrafts, Indian cosmetics, brass and aluminium utensils, electrical goods, jewellery, flowers for prayer purposes, and wedding decorations.
The shop’s owner, V. Damodharan Pillai, (who says he is better known as Arasu) is a 68-year-old who began helping at the shop when he was just 14. The business was handed down to him from his father, who came from India.
“Now, there are many shops and many competitors. Last time, I was very busy, but now, not very busy. Now customers compare prices because there are many shops. Mustafa is very big business. Yes, it affects my business,” said the congenial businessman.
For Pillai, his business depends mainly on his regular customers. “Some of the customers are tourists, some of the customers are from other areas like Sembawang, Yishun, Jurong, Changi areas,” he said.
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Situated amongst the sunny meadows and lush valleys of the Emmental region, Trubschachen is where Kambly’s culinary story began. (Courtesy of Kambly)
Think Switzerland is only famous for its chocolates? Think again.
Every day, many visitors flock to the idyllic village of Trubschachen to discover the Swiss art of fine biscuit making at Kambly—Switzerland’s legendary biscuit manufacturer and best-loved biscuit brand.
Situated amongst the sunny meadows and lush valleys of the Emmental region, Trubschachen is where Kambly’s culinary story began.
(Courtesy of Kambly)
Born From a Love Story
Kambly was born 110 years ago in a gesture of love. In 1906, young Oscar R. Kambly followed his sweetheart to Trubschachen, where he settled as a baker and confectioner.
The third generation Kambly Chairman, Oscar A. Kambly told swissinfo.ch, “My grandfather happened to meet a girl from Trubschachen at his commercial school in the French-speaking part of Switzerland. They fell in love and he decided to come here.”
“He came here as a baker and he started to bake Bretzeli—that was a family recipe—for his friends and for the village. It was such a success in the region that he decided to start a business.”
Baked according to his grandma’s recipe, the crêpe-style biscuit Bretzeli is Kambly’s star product. The wafer-thin waffle biscuits have garnered many fans worldwide, and transformed Kambly’s village bakery into Switzerland’s best-known biscuit factory.
An independent family firm of three generations, Kambly continues the love, devotion and tradition of fine baking with the best natural ingredients.
The majority of the raw ingredients are sourced from the scenic Emmental valley itself, which produces fresh milk, butter, eggs and flour. The chocolate is produced by a notable Swiss chocolate maker using Kambly’s own recipe.
True to the Swiss standards of “quality without compromise”, Kambly creates a variety of exquisite, high-quality confectioneries that are exported to over 50 countries. Kambly’s exacting standards in quality and innovation have placed the company in the premium sector of the global fine biscuit market.
The vision of Kambly’s founder and his company is clear: each Kambly specialty biscuit is a refined masterpiece exquisitely crafted with love by a maître chocolatier et pâtissier, as a way of saying a little thank-you to life.
The crêpe-type biscuit Bretzeli is Kambly’s star product. (Courtesy of Kambly)
The Kambly Experience: Discover the Art of Fine Biscuit-Making
At Trubschachen, discover the fascinating world of Kambly at their visitor centre and unearth the secret of fine biscuit making.
Visiting the Kambly Experience is a great excursion for the whole family. Check out the following activities for both kids and adults:
Kambly Experience is a great day out for the whole family. (Courtesy of Kambly)
Unearth the secrets of baking the original Bretzeli at the original Kambly bakery set up by its founder—Oscar R. Kambly. (Courtesy of Kambly)
1. “Make Your Own Biscuit”: open to young adults and children older than 6 years, the programme runs every Wednesday and Saturday from 2.20pm to 4.20pm, at CHF5 (S$7.05) per participant. To register, visit http://goo.gl/BXhjj3
2. Join in the fun with your kids or friends at the “Creative Baking” classes for groups and families. This activity is available on Mondays, Tuesdays, Fridays and Sundays, at CHF100 (S$141) for groups of up to 14 people, and CHF200 (S$282) for groups of 15 – 28 people. To register, visit http://goo.gl/foFzPb
Join in the fun with your kids or friends at the “Creative Baking” classes for groups and families. (Courtesy of Kambly)
Learn many helpful tips on the art of fine biscuit-making at Kambly’s Show Confectionary. (Courtesy of Kambly)
3. Discover the tradition and charm of Kambly via the Kambly Multimedia Show. Unearth the secrets of baking the original Bretzeli at the original Kambly bakery set up by its founder—Oscar R. Kambly.
4. Learn helpful tips on the art of fine biscuit-making at Kambly’s Show Confectionary, where Kambly’s maîtres confiseurs bake quality confectioneries right before your eyes.
Chocolune: a hazelnut meringue filled with chocolate cream and dipped in rich Swiss dark chocolate. (Courtesy of Kambly)
5. At Kambly’s spacious Factory Store, be spoilt for choice by over 100 varieties of exquisite biscuits, with free sampling.
To name just a few, besides the traditional crisp Bretzeli, treat yourself to Chocolune (a hazelnut meringue filled with chocolate cream and dipped in rich Swiss dark chocolate), Chocolait (a Swiss classic made with milk and a thin slab of fine Swiss milk chocolate), Mandelcaramel (a crisp biscuit with caramelised sliced almonds dipped in Swiss milk chocolate), and Éclats Croquants de Pistaches (a biscuit with crunchy caramelised pistachios and almonds).
At Kambly’s spacious Factory Store, be spoilt for choice by over 100 varieties of exquisite biscuits, with free sampling. (Courtesy of Kambly)
6. Enjoy a refreshing break at the Kambly Café, which serves coffee and exclusive herbal teas paired with tasty surprises. To arrange receptions for groups, which can also be combined with a baking event, email email@example.com.
7. The village of Trubschachen is home to three Swiss heritage companies—Kambly SA, Jakob AG and Töpferei Aebi—each known for its emphasis on tradition and innovation.
Visitors can gain interesting insights by touring the three companies. After visiting Kambly, one can learn about the tradition-rich craft of rope-making at Jakob AG. At Töpferei Aebi, one of the best-known and oldest ceramic pottery makers in Switzerland, peer over the shoulders of the pottery makers. The tour is free of charge. For more information, visit www.kambly.com/tour
Getting There: The Kambly Train
The Kambly Experience in Trubschachen can be reached easily by car or train (hourly, direct connections from Berne and Lucerne).
Take the unique Kambly Train that runs from Tuesday to Sunday.
During the ride, take in the scenic countryside with traditional farmhouses, clear lakes, waterfalls, lush valleys, and Entlebuch, Switzerland’s first UNESCO biosphere reserve.
The Kambly Experience, Trubschachen
Opening hours: Mon – Fri, 8.30am – 6.30pm ;
Sat & Sun, 8.30am – 5.00pm
Entry fee: Free
Address: Kambly Experience
(In Singapore, Kambly specialty biscuits can be purchased at Cold Storage, NTUC, Giant, Mustafa, Isetan and Meidi-Ya.)
Get the latest issue of Epoch Times (Singapore Edition) at Kinokuniya Book Stores today!
What are the different CSR models and why should corporations embrace CSR? Read the October 2016 issue to find out. Get the latest issue at Kinokuniya Bookstores today! Alternatively, register for the Talk: “Corporate Social Responsibility in Singapore: What’s the next lap?” to find out more!
Go to http://inspired.epochtimes.today/ to register for an invitation today; limited seating. Or Contact: Renee Wong (firstname.lastname@example.org), Sharon Lee (email@example.com)
Speaker: Gerard Ee,civil servant and social services champion, and Alex Soh, professional photographer and founder of the charity initiatives Project Road and The Rice Project.
What is an Asian brand of philanthropy? In this interview, Laurence Lien gives a glimpse into why it is important for Asian philanthropists to join up efforts to work on issues together, the challenges of building a collaborative network, and the need for Asian philanthropy to be more strategic to address Asia’s social challenges. Read the October 2016 issue to find out. Get your latest issue at Kinokuniya stores today!
Get the Oct 2016 issue at Kinokuniya Bookstores today!
Epoch Inspired Talk: “Corporate Social Responsibility in Singapore: What’s the next lap?”
Register to attend an inspiring evening featuring two speakers from Singapore’s charity enterprise arena – Gerard Ee, civil servant and social services champion, who is known for his work in restoring public confidence in the National Kidney Foundation; and Alex Soh, professional photographer and founder of the charity initiatives Project Road and The Rice Project.
Go to http://inspired.epochtimes.today to register for an invitation today; limited seating. Or Contact: Renee Wong (firstname.lastname@example.org), Sharon Lee (email@example.com)
Event: 3 November 2016, 7pm, EcoWorld Gallery (opposite Tudor Court Shopping Gallery, Tanglin Road. Parking at Tanglin Mall.)
Epoch Inspired Talks – CSR in Singapore: What’s the Next Lap? (Mark Your Calendar: 3rd Nov, 2016)
To Register: Go to http://inspired.epochtimes.today/; limited seating. Or email firstname.lastname@example.org/ email@example.com.
Come for an inspiring evening featuring two speakers from Singapore’s charity enterprise arena – Gerard Ee, civil servant and social services champion, who is known for his work in restoring public confidence in the National Kidney Foundation; and Alex Soh, professional photographer and founder of the charity initiatives Project Road and The Rice Project.
Venue: EcoWorld Gallery (Along Tanglin Road, opposite Tudor Court Shopping Gallery. Parking available at Tanglin Mall)
Registration and Wine: 18:30
Inspiring Talks: 19:00 – 21:00
1) Alex Soh: The Journey of Hope – From The Rice Project in Sri Lanka to Project Road in Cambodia Alex Soh
2) Gerard Ee: CSR in Singapore: What’s the Next Lap?
Passengers in the train subway Singapore. (Photo Source: pixabay.com)
[This mentality is common] in China: if you don’t compete or pretend that you are strong, others might take advantage of you and you would get bullied. – Su Xi (pseudonym), a researcher at a local educational institution
It’s just bizarre: Singaporean Chinese and mainland Chinese belong to the same race and look the same, but seem very different socially and culturally.
According to 2011 and 2012 reports in The Telegraph and The New York Times, around a million mainland Chinese have arrived in Singapore, constituting a fifth of the island’s population. While the majority are willing to accommodate to Singapore’s culture, a minority of Chinese immigrants are still reluctant to fit into local society.
Singaporean Chinese are often annoyed by the uncouth behaviour of some Chinese nationals, who tend to speak loudly in public places and swan into buildings leaving the door open. Also, we have too often heard stories of Chinese women snatching Singaporean husbands.
China’s shenzhen, night, people to take the subway. (Waihs/Dreamstimes.com)
On the other hand, a segment of Chinese nationals are said to look down on Singaporeans because their traits such as ‘simple-mindedness’ and ‘inability to speak proper Chinese’ are deemed too silly in the eyes of certain Chinese migrants.
In 2011, a vitriolic debate on the influx of Chinese immigrants was sparked by the ‘curry dispute’, which saw a newly arrived mainland Chinese family complaining about the smell of curry from their local Indian neighbours’ flat.
In the same year, 24-year-old Wang Peng Fei was expelled from East Asia Institute of Management for producing a four-minute video mocking Singaporeans.
A year later, in May 2012, Chinese financial investor Ma Chi was speeding at the wheel of his $1.4 million Ferrari when he got into a fatal accident. The 31-year-old’s reckless driving killed himself – and also a 52-year-old taxi driver Cheng Teck Hock and his 41-year-old Japanese passenger, Ito Shigemi. Again, this incident raised a furore among local netizens against the surge of mainland Chinese in Singapore.
Of course, not all mainland Chinese are rude, aggressive or ill-mannered. There are many mainland Chinese who are equally appalled at their fellow citizens’ behavior, and a number have also assimilated well and are contributing positively to Singapore.
Su Xi (a pseudonym), a researcher at a local educational institution, is one of them. Unlike other Chinese nationals who usually position their nationality and country as a cut above the rest, Su Xi is modest, polite and rational.Hailing from Southern China, Su Xi tells us about her life in Singapore and sheds light on why Chinese nationals behave in such a manner as well as the problems facing China.
Can you comment on the Curry Dispute in 2011?
I think the mainland Chinese family should have shown more tolerance and respect towards the other culture. Curry indeed, I would say, is not the kind of food that we could get used to for a typical mainland Chinese family. But in any case, understanding and showing respect towards the other ethnic group’s culture or way of living is a basic courtesy.
I was given the opportunity to participate in a cultural exchange programme when I just came to Singapore. I lived with an Indian family for a few days. Initially, I was thinking, would I get along with them due to the culture differences? However, surprisingly, they were enormously friendly and nice. They burnt some kind of incense at home to worship their God and their old Granny held my hand and said, “I bless you and your future.” I think they were really kind.
They brought me to tourist attractions such as Night Safari, Little India and Mustafa. I even tried on their traditional costume.
To be honest, if there wasn’t such an experience, I might never get the chance to learn about Indian culture. Thanks to this programme, I got to know them better and it dismissed the perception biases I had about them in the beginning.
What do you like about Singapore?
I think it’s the order and efficiency. The transportation system is very convenient. I think everything is in order here; I probably like that.
Is it easy to adapt to Singapore culture?
I don’t find it different. If you talk about Chinese food, I can almost find everything I like here in Singapore. I like mixed rice and Yong Tau Foo. That is what I usually eat.
What are the differences between Singaporean Chinese and mainland Chinese? Some mainland Chinese are said to be rude and aggressive. Are you equally appalled at your fellow citizens’ behaviour?
I agree, Singaporean Chinese are more polite and friendly. Mainland Chinese tend to be more aggressive, probably because they are always rushing and competing for everything.
[This mentality is common] in China: if you don’t compete or pretend that you are strong, others might take advantage of you and you would get bullied.
I think it has something to do with communist culture. A few decades ago, before 1949, China was not like that.
For instance, in late Qing dynasty, there were some reporters who visited China and snapped photos of those Chinese; you could see them smiling and looking very happy. But today, it is rare to find the Chinese smiling and looking that friendly on the street.
In the past, let’s say the Chinese coolies only earned $1 a day, but they were not rushing for work or chasing after money. When it was time to rest, they would just rest, patronise the teahouse and pay a fee watching traditional opera. In modern China, the Chinese are solely thinking about making big money every day.
This mindset in people changed gradually, especially after the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) took over. The CCP eradicated that kind of ancient Chinese spirit, probably because it destroyed our traditional culture during the Cultural Revolution.
During the Cultural Revolution, many books were burnt, millions were killed or driven to suicide, and people started to mistrust everybody and harbour suspicions towards their neighbours and even their family members. It was as if anybody could be a spy, and anyone would report to the officers for any deeds against the party.
The CCP has always upheld its philosophy of “brutal struggle, attack and merciless crackdown” since coming to power. It brews falsehood and hatred; its party’s model hero, Lei Feng, once said, “We should treat our enemies mercilessly, being as cold as the severe winter.”
The history of the destruction of human nature and morals in China is clearly presented in a ballad below (extracted from Nine Commentaries on the Communist Party – http://www.ninecommentaries.com/):
In the 50s people helped one another,
In the 60s people strove with one another,
In the 70s people swindled one another,
In the 80s people cared only for themselves,
In the 90s people took advantage of anyone they ran into.
I guess that’s how the Chinese have evolved to be so rude and aggressive. They do not trust anybody and compete against one other in order to survive. Even I find it hard to survive in Chinese society.
People will hold the door for others in Singapore. That is one practice which I find very nice. In China, they wouldn’t really care. – Su Xi, a researcher at a local educational institution
Have you experienced any culture shock in Singapore?
Not really, I think.
People will hold the door for others in Singapore. That is one practice which I find very nice. In China, they wouldn’t really care.
In China, there are a lot of scams. I heard of a news in China about an old lady who fell. A young man offered his help, but in the end, the old lady demanded money from him instead, accusing him to be an accomplice.  That is why nowadays, people in China wouldn’t dare to offer their help to strangers.
This is the sad consequence of a corrupted [society with declining morals].
Why do you say China is a corrupted society with declining morals? Don’t people in China have religious beliefs?
In today’s China, fake products, prostitutes and drugs are ubiquitous. Corruption is rife, (and so are) conspiracies between officials and gangs, organised crime syndicates, bribery and even state organ harvesting. [2, 3, 4, 5, 6]
In China, as long as you are apathetic about politics and do not protest the CCP’s leadership, you could let your desires [run amok]; people would do anything to earn big money, thus resulting in a [society with declining morals].
Most mainland Chinese do not have a religion, especially the younger generation. [In school], we are taught that there is no God. I couldn’t recall if that was taught in textbooks, but that was what I received from both my teachers and parents.
They would think having some religious belief is superstitious and silly. They think that science can explain everything. Some elderly still go to temples, but it is to worship for good luck, fortune, money, curing disease, but they aren’t really believing or cultivating.
Why do mainland Chinese tend to talk loudly in public places?
Presumably, mainland Chinese tend to talk loudly in public places because they are not considerate of others and they don’t care how others feel. This kind of consideration is lacking in China.
Share with us about your country. Tell us about Chinese culture.
China is a country of splendid culture and scenery. But unfortunately, many mountains, rivers, lakes are too commercialised and polluted. Many ancient buildings that had actually survived World War II were [demolished] by the CCP during the Cultural Revolution.
When the CCP rebuilt the city, they just wanted it to look modern and as if the economy is very good. To them, it is solely about construction: how many skyscrapers there are, how tall those buildings are, how many modern facilities they have. They don’t have respect for Chinese culture and traditions. They don’t care and don’t develop it responsibly.
Many things were being ruthlessly destroyed by the CCP during the Cultural Revolution. Although there seem to be a lot of teachings passing down from the Confucius or Taoist schools, no one can understand them nowadays.
Many good things are lost. Today, many Chinese only have superficial knowledge about their traditional culture.
The school teachers try to inculcate our love for China or CCP, but they don’t share deeply about our culture or history.
You would always hear them say 5,000 years of history, but the school textbooks never go in-depth such as how the people of Han Dynasty really eat or live, as well as the values and virtues behind those ancient stories.
In China, you can’t access Facebook or Twitter, as well as many other social media platforms. I am curious, have you heard about the 1989 Tiananmen Massacre?
I came to know about the 1989 Tiananmen Massacre when I was a second year student in secondary school. Somebody asked me if I knew about June 4th. I replied: What is June 4th?
He shared the June 4th Massacre with me, and I was shocked.
I remembered during one history class, my classmate stood up and asked my teacher why topics which are against CCP, like the Cultural Revolution, are never formally taught in our textbooks. In the end, the teacher scolded him sternly. I didn’t know the teacher would be so cautious in what he would be teaching.
That should be one of my first few impressions on how the government was controlling our minds.
Have you heard about the persecution of Falun Gong in China?
Yes, I know about Falun Gong, but I didn’t know about the persecution until three years ago. People told me that some of my relatives actually practised, but I didn’t know or couldn’t recall.
In 2001, they produced that staged Tiananmen self-immolation news (a preprogrammed footage to spread lies about Falun Gong) and broadcasted it on TV almost every day. I watched that.  But as years passed, I have forgotten about it.
[It wasn’t until 2013] when my Math teacher from university told me he was practising Falun Gong. Maybe I was partially brainwashed by the state media, but I was a bit stupefied.
He told me why he practises Falun Gong, and I believe that Falun Gong is good because I know he is a good person.
What are some misconceptions of your country?
A misconception with regard to China is that we are economically strong.
China is very big. It has cities that are very prosperous such as Beijing and Shanghai. But it comes with a cost. Pollution is very severe.
Moral values and virtues are destroyed when people only care about money. There are many cases of fake drugs and fake milk powder. Some of my friends are worried about visiting the hospitals in China; they are thinking are those doctors qualified and are those pills fake?
The CCP didn’t really develop and plan carefully. They only care about GDP numbers, as long as there are marvellous skyscrapers and fast trains. But these come with the cost of the resources of China.
There are many places where the Chinese are very poor and lacking in education; they don’t even have a school.
There are stories of leftover parents who committed suicide, as well as tales of leftover children whose parents have left them to work in large cities. In addition, there are many villages such as AIDS Village and Cancer Village. [8, 9, 10]
There are many social issues that are hidden beneath the GDP numbers. On the surface, the society looks prosperous, but hidden beneath, when you go in-depth, it is rotten.
Even for the rich people in China, they might live quite well, but they don’t enjoy freedom of belief or freedom of speech. However rich he is, once he touches the line, the party would take him down.
But sadly, the Chinese are already so money-driven that they wouldn’t care. Their attention is solely on money.
And there is fear among many Chinese.
If that is the case, why are most Chinese staunch supporters of their government (the Chinese Communist Party)?
The communist culture has been deeply rooted, even in youngsters’ minds.
Once, I talked to my friend [who] knows about all the ugly things that CCP has done. But in the end, her conclusion was the ruling party has to be like this. She was adopting the assumption that only by killing people can one sustain its power.
The CCP instills this mindset to students since young without them even realising it. In school, we have to sing and listen to those songs praising CCP. Moreover, we have to watch movies that distort history, applauding the greatness of CCP and lamenting how China would be such a mess without CCP.
The CCP relies on lies to brainwash people. The communist party indoctrinates Chinese to believe that CCP represents China and Chinese.
When I was six or seven years old, the school would make us swear to the communist flag, saying we would devote our life to the CCP. I find it laughable, thinking about it now.
What is the way out for mainland Chinese? How can China regain her moral compass?
Break the great wall; learn about the truth and evil nature of the CCP via the free Internet. That is the only way for the Chinese to free themselves from communist ideologies and erase their Party culture. Only when Chinese minds and human nature are rectified, can China regain her conscience and morality.
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