Thursday, 7 June 2012


We live in an age where technology runs rampant, and we are constantly immersed in it. Of course, the internet that is only about 20 years old have been a part of our lives, probably an extremely part of our lives. However, with the advances of the internet, it comes with potential dangers – misinformation, and spreading of misinformation.

As with all projects, one must do extensive research on the topic of their choosing, the internet serves as a medium between its users and the rest of the world. It gives the user the convenience of finding things with a few keystrokes. However, not all these materials present an impartial view towards a subject. In a world where users can masked themselves as anyone who they choose to be, it is difficult to determine whether a source is credible or not. This is the most likely one of the pitfalls of technology.

This proves to be challenging for good and bad researchers alike as they have to plow through biases and misinformation.  Thus it might hinder these people from developing their own individual opinions.
With technology I am able to create this blog post for the world to see, it makes information sharing extremely easy as if everyone around the world is only separated with the click of a button. But alas, I digress. The biases that everyone has will most likely be left in the information they present to the world. It is in the user’s hands to filter and come up with their own individual opinions.

Conjuring the Thoughts

Personally, when I partake in school research projects, I usually would take up topics that interest me yet at the same time provides me with a challenge. This topic is no different, as I find it extremely interesting how a small group of people are able to rise through the sea of mediocrity and attain power, through words and “promises” of a better future and how some people can come to the conclusion that you are morally inferior if you do not share the same religious views as them, which probably was imposed upon them when they were young, but that might be a generalization. These two topics alone incited many controversies throughout the progression of history, but people rarely put these two together. What I have done is simply doing 1+1, but the results yield a far more surprising answer. Similar to my approach in composing music,by playing certain note sequences together, the sound of the passage change and sometime even create a new emotion among the listeners. This is exactly the “new emotion”.

However, upon beginning my research, I have discovered that this issue of “political religion” is not only its own parasitic entity; it ties different sectors of society together and create this form of control which is brilliantly and silently imposed on us. But, we as a society are completely blinded of this issue. I wanted to bring this issue to light, and hopefully the readers of my blog post can pass this information on to others. Like my suggestion for the first step of change in my last post, spreading awareness. I believe that there is a bias that when a person critiques public entities such as religion and politics, they will be looked at in a different light, some may find these people brave for voicing out their concerns, some find these people to be the instigators of conflicts due to them not conforming to societal demands. I have been called many things and these are some of them. In the end, I just want to hopefully present the information I have gathered to the world with the least bias possible, however I am aware that my highly opinionated personality does not allow me to do so.

With the extensive amount of research material that are presented to me, my understanding of this issue has definitely increased because of the massive wave of information which I would have never thought of. It is truly eye-opening to discover that this is only a piece of the global operation that is oppression, a very little piece as well. To think that we live in a democratic society and would not be affected by a term that is so foreign to the first world, oppression. We are molded to believe that we are not affected, but in fact, we are in the middle of this. It is because of our status as a first world country that oppression is not visible.

This blogging experience taught me a valuable lesson which I will take on in life. Although we may be in a first world country, but global issues like this affects all of us. I end this post with these words, nothing is the absolute truth, question your surroundings and be the voice of the voiceless.

Sunday, 3 June 2012

No More Power Games

So, after four long posts about politics and religion, all of which had me viewing the issue in an impartial light, I want to use this post to address some of my concerns and thoughts. I never considered myself a religious person; I was forced to attend a catholic school in my elementary years, so, religion never really affected me as a person. The occasional sermon never inspired me, as I felt that it was too “restricting”. It restricted me to a certain lifestyle, which limited my individuality. Of course, I didn’t think of it this way back then, but now it seems like the likely conclusion.
My mother is a born-again Christian. Luckily, she does not force religion on me, unlike many other people I know. A lot of people have to withhold certain values due to their culture and background. Some people do not even have a say in their beliefs, as they are taught certain values from a young age. These values remain attached to them as they grow, and gradually become their own values. The cycle repeats with their offspring, of course. From my understanding, religion is an outlet to promote “faith“, which is what truly contributes to our spiritual development. However, I feel that many people misinterpret faith as religion. Most politicians see this misunderstanding, and utilize this to their advantage.

I really did not care for this issue until I realized that this has happened consistently throughout history. Authority figures realize that the masses are following a religion, or a person and they will utilize that to further their manipulation on society, dictating its morals, values, and thoughts. It is just as if they are stripping them of their individuality, and replacing them with ideas and values that complement the rule; they don’t tolerate any opposition, of course. I feel as if the society we live in is built upon centuries of abuse and oppression. 

Upon hearing, and realizing, that oppression runs amok in this world, I failed to realize that as long as there are oppressors, there will be a resistance. All throughout history, when a tyrant took rule of a land, there were groups which actively resisted. It is no different now, and I wish I could say that I am one of the rebels; oppression has no place in today’s society. I can
not imagine my children living in a world run through inequality and oppression, and molded to start conflicts because of narrow-minded people in power.
Politics and religion are only two mere pieces of a large puzzle, the completed piece spells “oppression“. They are tools, used by oppressors to further pressure us into conforming to their morality, values, or a dangerous lack of both. It is as if they breed greed and hate among us, just to keep the wheel of oppression rolling. Individually, the concepts of politics and religion are completely harmless, as I mentioned in my first post. Add manipulation into the mix, and voila, you have the most dangerous weapons ever designed. This concoction’s place in our current society is quite disturbing; I say it with great disgust: we are all a part of this global operation. However, awareness leads to realization, and hopefully, we can do something about this.

As a musician, I stand for the freedom of expression and thought. Although the genre of Heavy Metal is generally misunderstood for its lyrical content and portrayal of politics and religion, it is somewhat eye-opening to find that some lyrics shed lights on social issues, such as the manipulation of the public from religious organizations, or even the false justification of war used by our dear politicians. A certain song by a Swedish metal group, Arch Enemy, discusses how the church has utilized religion as an excuse for bloodshed by forcing its beliefs onto the weak. Even though it is a song, it shows that these musicians are willing to express their feelings, and expose the oppression that is in our society - through the sheer power of their art. I look up to these people as examples to follow, and wish to use musical instruments as instruments of change.

Warning: Music contains death growls so it might not be easy for you to hear the lyrics.
Also I do not own the rights to this song.

Even though it might seem grueling for us, the oppressed have to stand up against the oppressors. In the end, if we are all united, there is no way for the oppressors to succeed. There are many instances in history, in which whole societies came back from the verge of self-destruction. It is our generation that is going to fight this battle for our future, and for our children. Even though this oppression is systematically implanted within the foundations of society, we, as individuals and members of the community, can bring forth the first steps of change by resisting and spreading awareness of this oppression.
One for all - all for one. 
We are strong we are one
 ~ Nemesis

Tuesday, 29 May 2012

Tomorrow Bears Our Name

Although we are always presented with issues and problems that are out of our reach and seemingly impossible to resolve, they all have solutions. We can take a look at the tale of David and Goliath, in which David achieved the seemingly impossible when he slew the 9-foot juggernaut as a young boy. I am not trying to say that God was on Davids side; I am only trying to show that even the biggest of problems can be solved with enough patience and perseverance, or just with the right execution.

Politics and religion are both relatively convoluted subjects that, as mentioned in my previous post, when mixed together, prove to be a concoction of dangerous proportions. This osmosis of religion into politics requires a precise touch to be dismantled, the proverbial “hit to the nail’s head”. Although these solutions might not immediately show results, they intervene with the cruel systematic cycle of oppression and can overthrow it. These solutions might take society years to fully eliminate “political religion”, but it is the start of a societal change which can be marked as another point of evolution for mankind as a whole.

Clearly defining the difference between Church and State, and their complete separation- Although the United States Constitution has stated the separation of Church and State, it is not truly followed. We see politicians openly state their faith in their speeches, and thus make use of people
s beliefs and values to gain their support. However, if the constitution is enforced, then there is no reason for politicians to publicly mention their faith to gain supporters. If they are elected these politicians are expected by their voters to adhere to their religious beliefs and display their values through their preferred policies. By having a written legislation or act that limits a politician from displaying their faith during their political campaign or speeches, we can lessen or even eliminate religious disputes between different groups, successfully excluding religion from politics.


 Public Scrutiny- Sweden is a country that has incorporated this policy to its constitution, and it is now a Swedish constitutional right. This allows the Swedish public to get clear insights into government and municipal activities, thus lessening the chance of the abuse of power inside the government. This policy allows civil servants to inform the media and outsiders as well. By having a public scrutiny act in our society, we, as citizens, are able to know governmental plans and details, giving us a voice. We can have a definite voice if the public is put in a closer position with the government. This transparency can combat corruption, and allows the public to be aware of the interactions between the government, church, and corporations, thus slimming down the chances of religious or corporate lobbyists affecting the governmental decisions. This will then allow us to easily intervene with the cycle of oppressions that is presented in our society, as now we are provided with clear insights into the government.


 The basis for this solution has already been set by our governments; it is just not finished or refined to modern societys standards. However, we, as members of society, can bring forth the end of political abuse if we stand together and voice our concerns. Independence is crucial to dealing with this kind of social issues. With independence, individuals are free from the shackles of oppression as we discover our place in our own society.


Regarding independence, there are examples in modern-day society which display the meaning of “united” as one, overcoming all obstacles. Take Iceland as an example, ever since the country went bankrupt there had been many radical changes in its society and system. Its government was forced to resign due to the number of protests, and its constitution was completely rewritten by its own people. This is a great example of a modern day revolution. As we are able to fight the systemic oppression that is prominent in society, it displays that we, as citizens, have the power to overthrow governments. How does that relate to my topic? It proves that the public cannot be truly controlled by the government, even by religious means, and that even the seemingly impossible is possible to achieve. There are obstacles, but these obstacles can be overcome. The mixture of politics and religion is only a small piece of a problem, which gives birth to oppression.


Tuesday, 22 May 2012

Pawns in the Game

Rebel [ri-bel]
to resist or rise against some authority, control, or tradition. 
2.a person who resists any authority, control, or tradition. show or feel utter repugnance
Oppress [uh-pres]
to burden with cruel or unjust impositions or restraints; subject to a burdensome or harsh exercise of authority or power 
2. to lie heavily upon (the mind, a person, etc.)
Conform [kuhn-fawrm] comply in actions, behavior, thoughts, etc, with accepted standards or norms 
2. to be in accordance 
3. to act in accord with the prevailing standards, attitudes, practices, etc., of society or a group
These three terms can easily define each group of people that are involved with this issue, and the attributes which motivate them. They can serve as a general summary of how each group does and feels in regards to the issue:

Rebels - They are the people who are aware of their “faulty surroundings”, and are willing to make a difference in their community. As they are able to see through the “facts” that they are presented with in the media and able to develop their own conclusion on certain societal situations. They do not conform to societal demands and norms. However due to their awareness and reluctance to conform, they sometimes have to suffer for their opinions and thoughts, due to them being “against the order of society”. There are many people throughout history that are punished for what they believed in, even till this day. Most rebels are very independent people that are willing to fight for what they believe in, just to be just. Their perseverance is something that we all as individual should learn. They are the people who are willing to dismantle the system of oppression that is in the world, even if it stems from a mix of religion and politics.

Oppressors - They are the people with authority (e.g. Politicians). In order for them to maintain their positions as the leaders of their own respective groups, they will do their best to gain the popularity of the masses. One of the methods is to proclaim oneself to be a believer of a certain religion, and this will then most likely earn the support of the people with the same faith. To further their cause, they will then attempt to create policies that reflect their religious roots to strengthen their following of supporters. However, politicians sometimes utilize scare tactics to get supporters. By using that, the people are put into a system of oppression with terror, in which fear will become the determining factor of a countrys future. In order for some politicians to reach their agenda, they utilize religious values and fear of the people to propagate their own beliefs and values to gain support. As they reach their goal, the people suffer as the elected politicians policy that was said to “protect” the public will strip the people of their rights and freedoms. Thus, accelerating the rate of conformity among the people in society, as they cannot find ways to resist a system that is so-welled structured.
Conformists These are the people who are unaware of their surroundings, and just follow societal trends. Usually they are very devout believers of a particular religion, which has a strong impact on their development as individuals. They usually do not question authority or sayings, but instead follow these societal demands as they view it as help maintaining societal order. They are the people who do are not aware of their oppressed state due to the allusion that their everyday lives are similar. Nor would they care for the lives of others as they are unaffected by societal changes. As long as their way of life has a minimal to no change, they are willing to accept the hidden “oppression” they are presented with - as new societal standards. In the end, their unawareness of their living environment, and their unquestioning devotion to certain religions, can lead to a self-plummet into the systematic oppression, which is prominent in modern day society. 


Monday, 14 May 2012

Is it that simple?

I ended my last post with stating that we need to acknowledge the dangers of mixing politics and religion. I’ll go into depth as to why it’s a dangerous concept, and how it all started. It is extremely hard to pinpoint the exact origin, but there is sufficient evidence, from historic events and even modern-day society, which shows that a mixture of politics and religion can be used by leaders to further their own agendas. It can theoretically be attributed to the nature of human beings - maintaining and gaining wealth and authority.

History implies that religion has always had a political “edge“ to it, which is why it is frowned upon by analysts in a political context. In fact, most religion-bashers jump at this opportunity. We’ll take the example of the infamous Rodrigo Borgia, also known as Pope Alexander VI. He was a man who utilized his wealth to bribe cardinals to ensure his influence in Europe. He was a skilled politician, and was able to use the power he had as Pope to ensure his rule and his wealth. When Giovanni Savanarola, a preacher, defied his ways, he was publicly tortured and executed. In fact, he was made an example of in front of the people of Florence. Historically, even though he was a man of religion, Alexander VI abused the authority of his position to further his own goals.

Rodrigo Borgia - Pope Alexander VI

It is theorized that when men are put into a place of position, they utilize everything in their disposal to keep themselves, and their party of interest, in power. History has taught us that power corrupts. A rather infamous dictator, who we are all familiar with, used this method to achieve his goals. This man has been tarnished in history as one of the worst examples of a human being. He led to the deaths of millions, and his name is Adolf Hitler. His religious beliefs, though not belonging to a certain religion, extended into his politics; his idea of God wanting to create a “perfect race” seeped into his destructive practices. In fact, he preached of the supremacy of the “Aryan Race” to further serve his political cause. 

Propaganda picture of Hitler leading the German army to fight for racial supremacy.

Although I did not specify the root of the mixture of politics and religion, I theorized the causes from historical evidence and the basics of human nature. Greed has a major role in this situation, as it gives a person the mindset to be selfish. The dilemma it sparks as a result, drives a person to mix teachings with their own beliefs to yield a desired result. It is simple human emotions, which serve as the spark for creating these moral problems that we face as a society.

Thursday, 3 May 2012

All Its Takes a Spark..

In many forms, oil and fire are both parts of our everyday lives. Fire keeps us warm and provides light to brighten our homes; oil serves as fuel for many of our appliances. Can you imagine a world without these? I can't, and I'm sure not many people can either. Since these things have always been a part of our lives, it is extremely difficult to imagine modern-day society without these essential tools provided by Mother Nature. They form the basis of most technology, and have pushed us towards advancement in all areas of our lives. 

Now, think of "fire" as a metaphor for religion. With the correct implementation, it is able to bless us with concepts of morality and faith to help us develop our personal and communal identity. It can serve as the basis for our belief and values, thus enabling us to find our personal moral standing. In fact, it is safe to postulate that religion is the earliest "skeleton" of what we call "law". However, the fire metaphor also applies to its harmful nature. Just like fire can burn, religion that's imposed, and used in a controlling manner, can promote intolerance, bigotry, zealotry, violence and fanaticism. These extremely negative qualities can then instigate conflicts, or escalate existing conflicts to a new front. Religion possesses all the qualities of fire, it can illuminate, warm, spread, and burn, and makes either an extremely good impact on society or hindering its development. 


On the same note, politics serves as the "oil" to the same fire. It enables the regulation and management of a country, and keeps the gears of society running. It serves as the focal point of a government - any decisions made, can and will affect the daily life of the public. Like oil, politics can, theoretically, make lives easier by managing and making complex societal decisions. However, if the power of politics is abused, a functional society can be ripped off its hinges. In such a case, the "oil" burns society down to a crisp, and the public is taken advantage of. 

Connecting the dots, the mixture of fire and oil, instinctively, blazes up. The flames intensify as more oil is added, gradually getting out of control and morphing into an emergency. "Religious politics" is the bane of a functional society. As individuals, we all have our own unique morals and values; these values are bound to be different than others. In many cases, the beliefs of the governmental heads seep into the policies and everyday politics. The policies will then impact society in a positive or negative manner. For a better illustration, Iran's President, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, can serve as an example. Mahmoud is a strict practitioner of Islam, to the point where he will utilize all the power he has, as the leader of Iran, to bring forth the battle that will make the prophesized return of Mahdi (the Shiite Muslim Messiah, who is prophesized to return and lead Iran to victory during the End Times). As a leader, his policies and decisions reflect his religious background. An example of this was the attempt to create a nuclear program in Iran to establish it as a Nuclear Power. Just like our mixture of oil and fire, the "religious politics" will gradually get out of control and affect everyone around the world.  

Analogies always make complex concepts easier to understand. My analogy is not perfect, but it is able to get message through. Did I offend a lot of people by using these analogies? Definitely, especially on religion, as religion is one of the more controversial and sensitive topic out there and there is only a thin line to cross to incite many debates and conflicts. But we still have to acknowledge the fact that involving religion and politics is a very dangerous concept.