Small Things

I took a day off yesterday, and it was nice. Thanks to my husband who suggested me to detach a bit from hussle bussle daily work.

I did mentally, physically.

Alone, away from internet, mobile phone, people, news, made me : finished murakami`s book norwegian wood, saw three movies (two of them were, interesting, told u later) and indulged my chaostic, incoherrent, interior taste by re-design the living room.

What I call living room, is only a small room in our home, with books in the bookshelf, a couch, a rotan chair and table.

I mean that the only things we have in our small living room, and hum.. hang on the wall, there is a retro poster of theater performance in Paris in 1940`s (the frame cost a lot more than the poster), a papyrus painting from Sudan, small souvenirs from places I or my husband have visited, the souvenirs is placed on a table, suppose to be a phone table with news paper holder. And an old clock from my father`s house.

There is something to be proud of, a pashmina, Afghanistan`s stole, a friend`s present from Kabul (thanks ya peng) that now, covers the couch in the top with another fabric, kind of humm..i dont know, wool or linen from yogyakarta.

My husband said, the new looks remind him hippies living room, I added "yeah, and what we need now is crack.." he he.. But, I think, he kind of like it.

Murakami`s book title Norwegian Wood, reffers to Beatles song with the same title. I was courious of that song, and i found beatles mp3 somewhere, in the cds box. And I listened to that song yesterday.

Do you remember ? (just click):
Listen WAV file

I once had a girl, or should i say, she once had me.
She showed me her room, isn't it good, norwegian wood?
She asked me to stay and she told me to sit anywhere,
So i looked around and i noticed there wasn't a chair.
I sat on a rug, biding my time, drinking her wine.
We talked until two and then she said, "it's time for bed".
She told me she worked in the morning and started to laugh.
I told her i didn't and crawled off to sleep in the bath.
And when i awoke i was alone, this bird had flown.
So i lit a fire, isn't it good, norwegian wood.

(taken from:
Audio Files - The Beatles Music)

I know this song. But, I didnt know the title and until to day i dont get what this songs mean. What is Norwegian wood? Norwegian girl ? Anyway this is a good song to listen to. and I think it matches somehow, with the new look of my living room. Anyway, the bookshelf made from wood :)).

The book teaches me to enjoy the small things. Enjoy the absurdity of live while you`re living it. Enjoy every small momments, in the current. now. there is never yesterday or tomorrow. The story is about a young man with his rebellious mind, sexual experiences, and his abstract undrestanding of love..

The last word on previous paragraph, made me want to talk about the two movies that I saw yesterday, Before sunrise and Before Sunset. Second title is the sequel, but do you know, after how many years the sequel was made? 9 years. Before Sunrise made in 1995 and Before Sunset in 2004. Starred with the same stars Ethan Hawke and July Deeply. The story in the first movie was simple, two strangers met in Eurorail in Europe, An american guy Jesse and French girl Celine, and they decided to stop in vienna, and spent 14 hours, walked and talked, around the city, they just could not stop talking. Its like they were couple for years.

Well, finally they slept together, in a park. But, this movie came to magic when they agreed not to exchange adress or phone number, because they affraid the feeling became ordinary and fade away. The ending of this movie was, they promised to meet, in another six months at the vienna station.

The sequel was, 9 years later (which indeed 9 years after the first movie, Ethan and Jully looks so different, off course they are older..) when they accidentally reunited in Paris. Jesse wrote a novel, that became best sellers their one night and Celine, who became enviromental acitivist, read his novel.

Celine went to a book store in Paris where Jesee promoted his novel. And they met, and again talked about their life.They were thirty something, Jesse was married with a son and Celine in a relationship with war photographer. They were more mature, wiser. Well, their life was not so happy (as we all are when we grow older, rite? ). Nothing was in the movie except their conversation in that day. Their conversation was natural, hypocritical,and in the same time touching, because, in the end they could not avoid to be honest to each other. Another open ending was there in this sequel, when July dance and said to Jesse "youre gonna missed your plane," and Jesse answered: "I know".

How they would end?

"It will depend wheter you are a cynic or romantic", I took this quote from the movie.

Anyway, life provides us with million of odds.
Whether they were meant to be together or not, it didnt matter.
They had heir momments, and thats it. Its not a big deal.

This is only small things guys.. dont be so serious.
Anyway, living live, keep walking, redefining and never, ever, stop.
I love you, all.. :)

Sout East Asia Association, a stagnancy

10.57 pm, Yogyakarta

I have told you my view about ASEAN. Despite all the facts, I think ASEAN will never become such an effective organization, as long as, they can not solve their basic problems.

Such as: economic gap and problem of trust, caused by their various political system background (remember ASEAN history as colonial's region), in particular, countries in Indochina region: Cambodia, Myanmar (Burma), Laos, Vietnam with other member in ASEAN.

Indonesia, I think, should start to consider seriously leaving ASEAN and stop its mental dependence to ASEAN. The mentality that says Indonesia needs ASEAN to show how influential Indonesia is in South East Asia region.

Are we? Are we influential? If its true, what is the result? Is there any ASEAN contribution to the international world, (okay, except TAC), Does ASEAN seen and weighted in the international society?

Beside ASEAN diplomats, how many people remember Asean Regional Forum? The only forum outside six lateral party talks, where North Korea, Japan, United States sit together in a rather peaceful atmosphere. No one. Because there has never an applicable, concrete, results appeared from such ambitious forum.

This mentality -- Indonesia is the biggest country in southeast Asia -- is not healthy, even we know that is the facts; We have to remember that we are Giant in the group of ants.

ASEAN is dull. I do hope Indonesia does not linger in that kind of stagnancy.

Anyway, this is just a thought.

Next we will talk about Australia, our lovely neighbor.
If you're not bored.
But, its likely, I bore myself with this topic, he he.
or perhaps, i will write about something else, something to make you frown. Love, maybe? :)
Good night, dear.. see you in Jakarta.

7 concentric circles

This is not Dante's Hell Circles. This is more mundane. I want to write some basics of Indonesia's foreign policy, and about Dante? I will write that later. Dante is also interesting. Perhaps, Dante is more attractive for some readers here. But, anyway, this is my blog :)

And, ah, this writing is not scientific writing in foreign politics. Its not even an article. This is just my view, a view of beginner in this matter. This is only dots of my experience, Im just trying to connect the dots. Im glad, if any of you willing to comment on this, share your views about Indonesia's foreign policy.

Please question my view. Debate me. Okay?

As in other countries, Indonesia's foreign policy is a tool to maintain domestic interest. Indonesia's interest mostly, territorial integrity. This is natural. Indonesia is an archipelagic state, it consists more 13.000 islands. Integrity for such vast region is essential. But, also this is ironic, because we know, we dont have ability to gain the most of it.

Speaking about circles, AFAIK, these are concentric circles/priorities of Indonesia's foreign policy:

-East Pacific (Aus, NZ, PIF, (Pacific Island Forum: those tiny islands in the pacific)
-East Asia (Japan, China, Korean Peninsula, India)
-European Uni, United States
-Middle East countries
-Asia and Africa (non-alignment countries)
-United Nations

ASEAN is the corner stone for Indonesia foreign policy. Why is that? I think and this is just a wild thought ASEAN is a place where Indonesia can shows its power most. Indonesia, is the biggest country in ASEAN, in terms of people and territory. The present of Indonesia as the fourth largest country in the world in ASEAN, is essential for ASEAN.

Kissinger in his book Does American need foreign policy has portrayed countries in South East Asia region with high potentials of conflict. Countries in this region, has never been involved in open war, because most of them is colonial territories.

In the past, they didnt control them-self. Their colonial was. Dutch was for Hindia, Spain and United States for Philippines, British for Malaysia, Singapore and Brunei. France was the colonial for most of Indochina.

ASEAN was established in 1967, as a buffer in the cold war, to gather those ex colonials into an agreement in maintaining peace and avoiding war. Therefore there was a Treaty for Amity and cooperation, means: an agreement not to launch open conflict in the region. It was a historical leap for this region. An eternal peace treaty that attracts influential countries, such as Russia, Japan, France, to join the treaty. It is not bad.

As the time goes by, a long with their traditional nature to avoid open conflict, ASEAN is demanded to show real contribution to their own people and international society (read: western countries).

ASEAN is criticized as "weak" in dealing with Military junta in burma (Myanmar) who continue to arrest some so called leaders of pro-democratic movement. ASEAN also criticized as a "bureaucrats gathering", since its never shows any concrete programs to its people (this view compare ASEAN with EU, who has their own parliament, currency, etc and also African Union, who has their own mechanism for conflict resolution and prevention)

SO far ASEAN has advance concepts, of politic, economy and social-cultural community but they are still hesitating to move forward. Some reasons are less trust to each others and heavy dependence in terms of economy and security to the Giants such as US, Japan and China.

Its 9.30 pm. I have to finish, and get some sleep.
I'll be in yogya from tomorrow night. I will update from there.

see you..

Riddle of Light

We often look for Light in bright places. In shining faces, white satin, Light symbols, words of God..But law of nature shows us, Light is glowing, mostly, in the dark

Read this:
Yakinkah ku berdiri/ di hampa tanpa tepi boleh aku mendengarMu/Terkubur dalam emosi / Tanpa bisa sembunyi/ Aku dan nafasku MerindukanMuTerpuruk kudisini/Teraniaya sepi/ Dan kutahu pasti /Kau menemani/ Dalam hidupku KesendiriankuTeringat ku teringat/Pada janjiMu kuterikat/ Hanya sekejap kuberdiri /Kulakukan sepenuh hati /Siang dan malam yang berganti/Sedihku ini tiada arti/Jika Kaulah sandaran hatiBenarkah ini jalanMu/Hanyalah EngkauYang kutuju/ Pegang erat tanganku/Bimbing langkah kakiku/Aku hilang arahTanpa Hadir Mu/Dalam gelapnya Malam hariku

I did not find the lyric in a tassawuf book or paper. I found this in the first album of Letto a new band.

A group of young men, who appear on the stage in their hip-hop style, sing pop songs, light pop, complete with their menye-menye stage act, prompting ABG girls to scream, anyway, they are just an ordinary band.

This song (those lyrics) is popular in radio stations. Usually, they play this in Love song sessions. They may not check objects in this song is full with capital letters. But, its okay, its time to talk about real Love, right?

I am not really into Indonesian bands. But, I dont know, I wanted to buy their album.
Its rare. But, hum.. so many weird things have happened to me lately; I just go a long with that. I bought it.

And, now, I know. Who said that we have to see Light in the light?

Ps I: In my amazement of their lyrics, someone told me, the band vocalist is a son of Emha Ainun Nadjib who has just returned from his study in United States. Other songs are also interesting. Its a blessing for Indonesian youngsters to hear and digest some spiritual lyrics in a truly, light pop song of a hip-hop style band.

Ps 2: thanks :)

The Greatest Satire

it was the most interesting Sunday I ever had.
I witnessed three important moments in live of humans

Death, married, and birth.
Each took place in different time, places, and people,
but it happened in a row, in one day.

It was like Quentin Tarantino movie, and the red thread was only me.
I was there in those three moments.
I was astonished.
It is like a great play presented in front of me,
I was the only viewer, crawling to seek some meaning, in those performances.

Sadness and happiness, is only string of live.
Because we are just puppets, play in His will.
Nothing is coincidence.
Nothing is eternal.

In Sunday afternoon, I attended some group of discussion, we discussed about His will.
We called it qodho and qodhar, it is a belief in Islam that everything has been decided by God, even before we born.

A member of the group, acted as fatalist questioned the logic behind this belief. He said all his good deeds are futile attempt, because God has decided to where he will End, hell or heaven.

For me, I do not have problem with that. First, I am not really interested with the idea of hell and heaven. It is like childish answer for such a complicated riddle of this mundane live. Second, I accept "Qodho and Qodhar " as the irony, as the Greatest Satire. His joke I have yet understood.

Some books, philosophical questions, philosophical thoughts, thousand poets, have tried to describe the irony of human live. I think that is the irony of the creation. All types of creation.

How can we escape from our Creator, for Him that brings us to life, for Him that makes us exist?, as now, when Im writing now, I am on His will.
We are just a role, in His book. Did He enjoy write about us?
Is He still writing, now?

if I can meet Him face to face, I will ask this:

What is the funny things create us, humans in this world, creates right and wrong, put us in this illusions, and ask us to be responsible for that?

for we, have never been asked to live?

It is a real Joy, knowing you God.

but I just cant solve this riddle.
not yet.

the riddle

With His Name

I am not looking for you or you

Iam not looking for love,
I do not understand what love is

I am a riddle
You are a riddle

And we are trying to solve that