Archive for the ‘Opinion’ Category

For those of you who don’t know what a ‘hang flower joint’ is, it’s a basically a pub/club/bar that dancers and singers sing or perform on stage. In exchange the customers will buy flowers to hang on the girls. And in exchange for these flowers, the girls will accompany you at your table after their performance. And the amount of time they accompany you will be directly proportionate to the amount of flowers you hang on them. The amount for the flowers start from ten dollars and goes all the way into the thousands.

hang flower joint

hang flower joint

One of my friends Andy is a big fan of these ‘hang flower joints’. So I have been accompanying him to several recently. I am absolutely flabbergasted by the amount of money that people spend in hanging flowers. I literally saw an old man purchase a thousand dollar banner to hang on the girl. A thousand??? Seriously? I wonder if he gets to fuck her after that. According to my friend Andy, it’s a no. It still depends on the girl.
What really puzzles me is why are men spending so much money on these women? I mean if it’s for sex I guess I can understand. But for false affection from these women, it really is pretty amazing. In these joints, there are very few physical contact other than the occassional holding of hands or the occassional peck on the lips or cheeks.

hang flower joint

hang flower joint

Watching my friend Andy desperately hanging 50 dollars worth of flowers on a few girls last night made me realize that these men are just pursuing the feeling of love. More specifically, First Love. I know it sounds kinda cliche but I think that’s the thing. It’s definitely not a physical thing. If not, they would have gone to a whore house or a massage parlour.

Or maybe it’s the thrill of the hunt. Pay money. Buy affection. Create a sense of ‘false dating’.

Or maybe these guys just have a lack of balls to approach women in clubs instead? Or maybe these older men with more financial power, they prefer to just pay and not have to deal with the fear of rejection. It’s a crazy world.

Many people must have heard of this thing called miracle faith healing, where people who are sick/handicapped gets miraculously cured by a faith healer. These faith healers proclaim they have the power from God and this power allows them to cure the sick and the handicapped. The people who supposedly have this special power are known as faith healers.

What do I think of faith healers? To be very frank, I think 99 percent of faith healers are fakes. And when I mean fake, it could mean two things. One. These people are out to con and cheat. Two. They are so deluded that it becomes a reality for them, and it becomes part of their consciousness. Are there real faith healers? Possibly but unlikely.

There are numerous videos on the internet that debunks faith healing. But here is one that is both entertaining and very informative. Miracles For Sale

One of the most famous faith healers in America is a guy called Benny Hinn.

Benny Hinn

Benny Hinn

This guy is one of the biggest tele-evangelist faith healer in the world. He claims to be able to cure people of all kinds of sickness including cancer. And people willingly give money to his church and to him in exchange for such miracles. This guy is so rich that he actually has his own private jet.

Is this guy for real? Well, till date, there is not one single case of healing that he has done that can be confirmed and proven medically. There is a documentary exposing him on NBC several years ago.

The amazing thing is that even after he was being exposed on NBC, he still continues to do whatever he is doing and reaping big money for it. It just shows that when it comes to religion, people can be extremely irrational. And this is where the danger lies. Some people do exploit this irrational faith. They exploit this ‘weakness’ in people for personal gain. When I say ‘weakness’, it’s really just a natural human instinct. We can all fall prey to this ‘weakness’, especially when we are caught up in a religious frenzy. It is easy for the church leaders to explain away any doubts by using the words “Trust God” and “Have faith”. Most people will just shut up after that. Surely you won’t want to risk being called ‘faithless’ or ‘godless’?

Now, there is a big difference between real faith and blind faith.
Real faith is given by God – blind faith is drummed up by the individual.
Real faith is based on evidences – blind faith is based on wishful thinking.

So, we need to be aware and conscious of our faith. We cannot blindly follow. There are things we need to question. Benny Hinn is a perfect example of why we need to extremely cautious of blind faith. The recent City Harvest Saga has given us some food for thought. The fact that the church actually invited Benny Hinn to preach in 2007 shows what kind of belief system it has. “Leave them; they are blind guides. If a blind man leads a blind man, both will fall into a pit.” Matthew 15:14.

The entire Singapore has been engulfed in a flood of ‘spiritual’ awakening lately. Everyone and everyone suddenly has an opinion about the recent City Harvest Church saga. From taxi drivers, to pastors, to the aunties at the wet market, everyone has an opinion about Kong, his pop-star wannabe wife and the City Harvest Church.

So here are my thoughts.

Did Kong Hee and the other church leaders charged commit a crime?

kong hee charged

kong hee charged

The answer to this question is a very simple “We don’t know”. They have been charged, yes. But have they been proven guilty by the court? No. Although it’s true that the CAD must have substantial evidences against them, but they have yet to have a chance to tell their story.

What is the issue at hand?

Many members of the City Harvest Church (CHC) have much faith in Kong Hee, their beloved pastor. They say they can see the good work done by the church and they also have no problem giving money to support Sun Ho’s crossover project. The question and issue here is not whether the money was put to any good use. I am pretty sure that the cross over project must have done some good. The real issue is whether any laws have been broken. A man who steals say a million dollars from his office and then gives 100K to charity, is still committing a crime. Has he done some good? Yes, for sure! But he has broken the law. This is not the land of Robin Hood.

robin hood

robin hood

I can also understand why the church members are so supportive of Kong. Church members are generally very close. They also see the church leaders as people they look up to and their spiritual connection with God. They are like their brothers, and sisters and many church member are in fact closer to their church leaders than to their own family members. And I honestly think these church leaders are generally nice people. So imagine one day, someone accused your best friend/father/brother of committing a crime of fraud. What is your first reaction? Indignant? Shock? Disbelief? Defensive? All of the above? One might think “How could someone so close to me and who has done so much good be accused of a crime like that?” It’s a natural human instinct to side with those that we love. Again, I have no doubt that Kong and his leaders have done a lot of good for the community and for the church’s members. BUT it doesn’t mean they are perfect and they can do no wrong. We are only human after all.

city harvest church

city harvest church

Is City Harvest Church’s teaching sound?

I am not a member of the church so I can’t profess that I know all the doctrines in the church. But after listening to numerous sermons, accounts from past and present members, I do draw some conclusions. I am pretty sure quite a large part of their sermons and doctrines are good. They teach people to be good and to love God and to love people. But I feel there are two major problems with the teachings of the City Harvest Church.

City Harvest speak in tongues

First, the concept of prosperity preaching. For those who want to know more about prosperity preaching, please check out prosperity preaching. I firmly believe that the concept of prosperity preaching is against the word of God, which is the BIBLE. I have heard sermons from Kong Hee which he preaches about a ‘rich Jesus’, to give so that you can receive 100 folds from God, and that only the rich churches can do much more for God. I have seen him twist bible verses to suit his purpose and objectives for the church members to donate more and more money to the church. There are numerous passages from the bible talking about the evil of ‘the love for money’. Jesus even says “It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the Kingdom of God.” (Matthew 19:24)

The second issue with the teachings of the City Harvest Church has to do with this whole idea of speaking in tongues. For more information about speaking in tongues, you should check out speaking in tongues. Or you can just take a read of bible 1 Corinthians 14, which is a lengthy admonishment against falsely speaking in tongues by apostle Paul.

When the bible talks about speaking in tongues, it is basically an act of speaking in another language which the person has no prior knowledge of. It’s like an Indian suddenly speaking in perfect Mandarin. That is a real sign of a miracle. BUT it’s not speaking in gibberish which no one can comprehend, which is what the City Harvest church members (at least most of them) are doing.

I have spoken to a City Harvest leader many years ago about this, challenging him to the scriptures. In the end, he reluctantly admitted that speaking in tongues was more of a psychological thing than a real ‘gift’ from God. He went on to say that he still felt there was no issue. As long as this whole ‘speaking in tongues’ help the Christian to be closer to God, it was ok.

But it is an issue because a large part of the church’s walk with God would be based on a very big lie. Members believe that those who can speak in tongues are more spiritual and Godly. They are pressurized to be able to speak in tongues so that they are not looked down upon by the other members. So what you get is an entire congregation of people in some kind of trance, believing they are connecting to God when it’s just gibberish they are spouting.

Sure, they can get emotional when they are in that state of trance. They ‘feel’ a connection to God. But is it even real??? Emotions are a strange thing. They can make one believe in the strangest things or do the weirdest shit. But it would so interesting to see Jacelyn Tay and Jack Neo speaking in tongues in the church. That alone is worth the tithe.

jacelyn tay city harvest

jacelyn tay city harvest

jack neo city harvest

jack neo city harvest

Is Kong Hee a real con man?

Check out this picture of Kong Hee 20 years ago. What do you think?

kong hee nerd


Well, I believe that this guy first started the church with very good intentions. I really don’t think that he started out by wanting to con people. But who knows what happened along the way?

Kong Hee apparently got his masters and doctorate from a university known as New Covenant International University and Theological Seminary (NCIU). It seems that this school has no campus, no curriculum, no facilities, no office.

It does seem that NCIU is a diploma mill, with doctorates and master’s degrees for sale, where any incoherent, fatuous, and plagiarized essay qualifies as a doctoral thesis or dissertation.

If NCIU is indeed a bogus school, then Kong Hee has never taken any courses (not even by mail) normally expected of a pastor in a mainline Christian denomination.

Did Kong Hee’s probably bogus master’s degree help him in getting ordained in 1991?

What does it say about the honesty and integrity of Kong Hee and Pringle that they would seek to impress their flocks with probably bogus “doctorates” from an outfit such as NCIU? And most importantly, if the doctorate was fake, then is he even qualified to be the leader of the church? Does he know enough about the bible to lead such a big congregation?

Source from: … -phil.html

Kong Hee rich ok?

I have no problem with Kong Hee being rich. But the question is how did he acquire his riches? Was he transparent about his pay? Was he transparent about all the businesses he owns which links to the church? The church, as a charity, gets tax exemptions. Therefore, transparency and accountability are crucial in the governance of the charity’s funds. TT Durai, Ming Yi and Joachiam Kang have all fallen prey to the temptation of greed and power. What makes the church members so sure that Kong and wife will not?

Sun Ho’s career

I am not going to talk about how disastrous those mtvs are. They started this so called crossover project with the intention of reaching out to Hollywood and to people who might otherwise not have a chance to know God. First and foremost, there are about 83 percent Christians in America. If they had wanted to save more souls, shouldn’t they have ventured out to places like China, or India?

sun ho hollywood

sun ho hollywood

Secondly, aren’t there any better singers that can be used for this project? Sun is neither the prettiest, most talented nor the youngest. Surely someone from the more than 33,000 membership can qualify? Was she chosen on merit? Or was it just simply a convenient case of ‘God chose her’?

Lastly, is spending 28 million justified in the project?


I am just curious about how the court case will turn out. Will it turn out more dark secrets on the church and its leaders? Or would the leaders come up with such a strong defence that CAD would be forced to mince their words? Let’s wait and see, shall we?

I did an earlier post with regards to the new Mediacorp TV Series Breakout and I praised Guo Liang and Jeanette Aw on their good acting and brilliant roles.

Sadly, I have to retract my earlier compliments. The first few episodes were very engaging and I thought some of the characterization were pretty strong. After the first week, the plot stagnated and we get treated to the same $#@% boring plot over and over again. How many times do we need to watch flashback of Guo Liang’s character and his brothers? Yes we get it. He is evil and has a violent past.

Then, we are being treated to the constant repetitive, and boring plot line of Xiao Ying (the woman who woke up after 13 years in coma) trying to find out who killed her parents. How is it even suspenseful when we already know that it was Guo Liang’s character who was the mastermind behind killing her parents? (please Mediacorp I pray you surprise me by having a twist to this plotline. Please don’t let Guo Liang be the mastermind)

Finally, how much of Jeanette Aw going psycho can we take? It seems that every episode she has at least two mental breakdowns. Is this some kind of Public Service Broadcast about Woodbridge Hospital and Split Personality Disorders? We get it. She IS nuts. Her character alternates between her silly ‘Holland Village Character’ and a growling lunatic. Speaking of which – why is she constantly talking in that low, strange voice and has a perpetual frown on her face? Evil people must frown all the time and speak in low voices? Someone please send a memo to Kim Jong Il.

First Expresson - Scowl

I am actually much more tickled by Ling Ming Lun’s character as the asshole lawyer. At least I get a good laugh every time he appears on screen. It’s fantastic to see his “Lampa Palan” face whenever he is in the presence of Guo Liang, Jeanette Aw and DYT (Dai Yang Tian).

Darren Lim is hilarious in a good way

Its unfortunate that a show with such promise in the beginning ran out of steam so early. Today’s episode about Pan Ling Ling’s character dying was especially painful to watch. The exaggerated acting of Jeanette Aw made the entire sequence unbelievable and laughable. The only possible saving grace was the scene between her and Guo Liang just before she died. It was possibly Guo Liang’s best scene. Prior to this scene, his pain and sadness consists of him grimacing and letting out “AH AH AH” with his eyes closed or half closed depending on the seriousness of the pain or sadness.

Don’t know how the ratings are turning out but my gut tells me that it’s not going to be that great.

You can watch the latest episodes here and judge for yourself.

If you say you’re in a committed relationship, what does that mean? What are you actually committing to? If I ask some people who claim to be in committed relationships what they mean by it, they might say things like: I’m committed to my partner. This answer is pretty vague, wouldn’t you agree? It could mean anything. Committed to what specifically? How is this any different than taking care of your dog?

I’m committed to loving my partner. That’s a step forward but still essentially a cop-out. Love is wonderful, but what’s the actual committment you’re claiming to make? To feel the emotion of love for your partner 24/7? To feel loving at least once every couple days? To hug your partner 5 times per week? To live together in the same household? To have joint finances? What are you actually saying?

I’m committed to having a spiritual bond with my partner. I feel like I’m asking a Ferengi how much they’d like to donate. Believing that you’re creating a spiritual bond is great and wonderful and all. But once you return from Narnia, then what are we really talking about here? Are you meditating together till your chakras look like a bowl of Lucky Charms? Are you smoking the same joint as one? What will we actually see of this spiritual bond you speak of?

When you define your commitment in such a vague way, there’s so much wiggle room that we could say you haven’t actually committed to anything yet. This is laziness masquerading as commitment. I’m committed to only having sex with my partner. At least we’re getting specific now. I’m sure your partner is very shaggable, but this is merely exclusivity. Is that all there is to commitment? If you’re exclusive with someone, is that sufficient to claim that you’re in a committed relationship together? And does this mean that prior to your current relationship, you were in a committed relationship with your hand? 😉

I’m committed to my partner’s highest good. Praise Hestia! What’s your partner’s highest good? Are you sure it involves being with you? Does this highest good include encouraging your partner to leave once you suspect that being in a relationship with you is no longer (or perhaps never was) equal to their highest good? I’m committed to your highest good. Does that mean I’m in a committed relationship with you?

I’m committed to loving, cherishing, honoring, and obeying my partner. How original. What does that actually mean though? How does this translate into what we can perceive? You can love, cherish, and honor a friend or family member if you so desire. What’s so special about how this shows up in your committed relationship? I like the obeying part though. Yum! 😉

Defining Commitment One reason so many relationships involve cheating, lying, and secrets is that the commitments are poorly defined. This creates gray areas that can be easily stretched until you reach the point of having crossed the border into breaking that commitment, but it isn’t clear at what point the border was specifically crossed. How will you know if you’re honoring your commitment or not? Be specific.

Start by explicitly defining what your commitment looks like. What do you expect of each other? What have you decided to co-create together? Talk about actions, events, feelings, reactions, expectations, and consequences. Step out of the conceptual realm, and move into the world of what’s perceivable. If you’re going to make a commitment, then let it be grounded in reality.

Bring it over to this side of the wardrobe. Making a subjective commitment is wonderful. That’s a good start. It’s perfectly fine to begin with abstractions like loving and honoring each other. But if it’s a real commitment — and not an airy fairy nebulous one that could mean anything — then there will be an objective side to it as well. The subjective and objective commitments are two sides of the same coin.

Ultimately you can’t have one without the other. If there’s genuine love present, how do you intend for it to manifest? Will this translate into flowers, joint finances, and having kids? Or will it show up as sailing around the world together, sharing bottles of wine, and hours-long lovemaking sessions? Or is it simply a matter of texting “I ❤ U, Schmoopie!” twenty times a day?

Everyone has a different understanding of commitment. If you assume your partner’s notion of commitment is the same as yours, good luck with that. It’s a well-trodden path to disappointment and heartbreak. Be prepared for that slow sinking feeling down the road. Reality vs. Semantics As you discuss your commitment with your partner, be careful not to get lost fussing over the exact meaning of words like commitment and cheating. The exact labels you use aren’t that important. What matters is that you focus on what’s real and grounded and experiential as opposed to getting too abstract and vague.

Talk about what your commitment means to you in a grounded way. It may be less romantic than the ungrounded version, but creating that level of clarity can deepen your connection. You’ll tend to feel more connected when you and your partner clarify what you expect of each other and what you’re willing to give. Saying that you expect your partner to love, cherish, and be faithful to you is likely to create headaches down the road.

Instead, replace these vagaries with a specific expectation like, “If you were to kiss another woman in a way that’s more than a friendly greeting or a peck on the cheek, such as if you were to make out with her or French kiss her, I’d consider that a violation of our commitment, and I’d feel hurt and betrayed.” Or say, “I’d like you to take at least one specific action each day that you expect will make me feel loved and cared for, such as making me a nice dinner; going for walk together while holding my hand; cuddling me on the couch as we watch a movie; looking into my eyes and saying ‘I love you and care about you’; or slapping a slave collar on me, commanding me to strip, tying me to the bed, and shagging me rotten.” Updating Your Commitment As your relationship evolves over time, it’s wise to update your commitment now and then.

Talk with your partner about the changes you’re experiencing. If you can’t renegotiate your commitment in a way that feels good to you both, then agree to let go with love, and give yourselves the freedom to seek out new partners who feel good about making the commitments you each desire. You don’t actually have to commit to anything. So if the idea of being specific doesn’t feel right to you, then it’s absolutely fine to let go and to allow your relationship path unfold as it will. In that case, don’t get too attached to the idea of commitment as it relates to any one person, as it will simply devolve into attachment and clinginess.

Commitment requires free choice, not obligation. If you claim to be in a committed relationship but you don’t have a specific commitment with your partner that goes beyond the use of vague and ill-defined words, then don’t be too surprised when your connection gradually becomes something that appears committed on the surface but lacks the true spirit of commitment in your thoughts, feelings, and actions. If you haven’t spelled out any specific commitments, then you’re better off not using the C-word to describe your relationship. But if you still want to feel the spirit of commitment without going through the trouble of defining it, use a slave collar instead. 😉

Drugs can be harmful to the individual and to society in general. But so are a lot of other things. Top on the list would be substances like alcohol and cigarettes. In fact, alcohol has been ranked as the world’s most harmful drug in a recent study. It tops even drugs that are widely hated such as heroin and ecstacy.

So why should some substances be banned while others freely enjoyed, despite the obvious harmful effects? Let’s compare cigarettes with Marijuana. Surely, the harmful effects of cigarettes can’t be any lesser than Marijuana? Marijuana is made from a plant, and traditionally regarded as a herb while cigarettes are manufactured synthetically, containing harmful chemicals like tar and nicotine. It’s so obviously harmful that every packet that is sold in Singapore comes with a health warning.

In fact, Marijuana was completely legal in most of human history. The story of why Marijuana was banned can be found here.

To quote from the article,

“Many people assume that marijuana was made illegal through some kind of process involving scientific, medical, and government hearings; that it was to protect the citizens from what was determined to be a dangerous drug.

The actual story shows a much different picture. Those who voted on the legal fate of this plant never had the facts, but were dependent on information supplied by those who had a specific agenda to deceive lawmakers. You’ll see below that the very first federal vote to prohibit marijuana was based entirely on a documented lie on the floor of the Senate.

You’ll also see that the history of marijuana’s criminalization is filled with:

  • Racism
  • Fear
  • Protection of Corporate Profits
  • Yellow Journalism
  • Ignorant, Incompetent, and/or Corrupt Legislators
  • Personal Career Advancement and Greed

Now while I am not stupid enough to think that all substances should be legalized, but it is my belief that banning them is not the true solution. Substances or drugs are not inherently good or bad. It’s how we use them that makes them good or bad. For instance, people can abuse even glue by sniffing them to get ‘high’. Poor foreign workers are also known to abuse cough medicine in a bid to get a cheap ‘high’. Are we going to start banning these substances just because people start abusing them?

Many of the ‘so-called’ illegal drugs do have health benefits if taken in small quantities. The issue here is ABUSE. There will always be people who choose to abuse substances. Food, glue, cough medicine, coffee. Hell! Even computer games and the Internet. Are we going to ban all these things as well?

It is in my opinion that education is much more important than banning. People need to understand the potential dangers of the substances and then make an informed decision based on the information. Much like gambling and prostitution, regulating the activity is much more helpful than banning, which will only force the activity to go underground.

A friend of mine once commented that if we were to legalize drugs, people would start abusing them, not go to work and start committing crimes when they can’t get their fix. To that I can only reply “Have you watched too much Cantonese drama serials?” I mean seriously, do we have such little faith in human beings? Do we hang around drinking alcohol all day. getting stoned, and committing crimes? Sure we will have a small group that abuse it, much like there will always be a small group abusing alcohol. But will it be to such an extent that it will cripple the nation? Take a look at Amsterdam. Have they sink into a nation of depravity, indulging in the legal drugs like bees to honey?

Amsterdam - You can try anything you want. Legally.

Lastly, do we really think that drug traffickers deserve the same kind of punishment as murderers and rapists? I rest my case.