Our planet and all her inhabitants including humanity are facing the biggest crisis it has ever encountered. The whole world is engaged in this so called “War on Terrorism”, Western nations are bankrupt, African Nations are starving, Middle East is going through a so called “Revolution”, natural disasters are occurring more often, animals species are on the brink of extinction, the whole world is in a brink of financial collapse and nations are either fighting or tolerating each other in very tense relationships. Just to name a few, the problems mentioned are the tip of the iceberg and if we don’t do anything soon about the underlying problems we are facing, we will undoubtedly head towards a massive catastrophe.
Can we honestly proclaim that humanity itself is heading in the right direction? Are we as human beings behaving in a correct manner that benefits the whole of humanity itself? If we cannot even care for our own kind, how are we supposed to care for other species of animals and plants of our planet? Don’t we have a responsibility to preserve our planet for our future generations? Are we not the keepers of this planet and all of its inhabitants? Before we can achieve this, don’t we have to first take humanity in the right direction? How are we supposed to head in the right direction when we don’t even care about our own kind?
We human beings are all on the same boat but all of us are peddling in different directions, causing the boat to spin in all sorts of directions that does not take us anywhere. While we are in disarray and squabbling, the current is taking us towards the rapids and waterfall. Some of us see this rapids and waterfall and start yelling that we are headed towards the rapids and waterfall. The others are busy peddling thinking that if they peddle hard enough the boat will head in the direction they want but their efforts prove futile because no one is peddling in the right direction and in fact more of us in the boat are peddling towards the waterfall. The boat is spinning out of control and the few who saw the rapids and waterfall started yelling and telling everyone on the boat that we are peddling the wrong way but only a few listened. Most in the boat who has been told even ridiculed those who warned them, calling them “crazy” and some even threatened to kill those who yelled out rapids and waterfall because they do not want to lose control of their spinning boat. Everyone is in disarray and frantically peddling as hard as they can but towards the rapids and waterfall and because of all the squabbling and confusion we fail to hear what those who saw the rapids and waterfall said.
Everyone is telling each other that their direction is the right direction. All of a sudden we hit the rapids and more of us realise we are in trouble and very soon we will be in the midst of the rapids. We started blaming each other that we got in the rapids and we formed into a few rival groups on the boat.
The largest group consist of those who didn’t listen to those who yelled rapids and waterfall. They call themselves “W Alliance”. They think they have control of the boat but they are peddling a spinning boat towards the waterfall. Some of them in that group are aware of the boat heading towards the waterfall but they are afraid to speak out because those in charge of that particular group happen to have the biggest guns and megaphone on the boat and they fear of being ridiculed by their friends in that group. Those controlling that group are desperate to hold on to power and they know that they are headed for the rapids and waterfall but they don’t care about the lives of the rest of the people in the group let alone other groups because all they care is about retaining their power and control. Unfortunately those who are in control of that group also happen to have the best seats on the boat and they have access to a number of life jackets and some food on the boat. A lot of people in that group only listen to them because they think they will get those life jackets but that wouldn’t help at all if they reach the waterfall.
Over at the other side of the boat we have another group which is just a big as the W Alliance but they are not armed with guns the size which W Alliance have. They go by the name of “E Axis”. E Axis is directly at the opposite side of the boat and they are frantically peddling as hard as they can but at a direction which is causing the boat to spin quicker. They have life jackets as well and have the majority of the supply of food on the boat. They are extremely frustrated with W Alliance because W Alliance has somehow manoeuvred the boat to the start of the rapids.
In the middle of the boat we have a group named “Third W”. They have no weapons and are in the worst part of the boat caught between W Alliance and E Axis and subject to be thrown off the boat when we hit the rapids. Both W Alliance and E Axis are trying to get members Third W on their side because they want ultimate control. W Alliance is doing this by using their guns and giving false promises that one day they will have one of the life jackets but the members have to fight over it. E Axis is trying to win the trust of members of Third W by providing them with food. They are extremely scared and confused because they are afraid to offend W Alliance by accepting E Axis food. Most of them are starving. Recently a member called Lib in Third W accepted the food from E Axis and W Alliance was very upset about this and wanted to set an example of him to the rest of third W. So W Alliance shot Lib in the leg warning Lib that if they ever accepted food from E Axis again they would make sure Lib would never live to see tomorrow. This is not the first example. They have set two previous examples before. One named “Ir” and the other named “Afg” were shot with a fully automatic machinegun. Somehow they are still alive but barely surviving from their wounds. Third W is starving and many of them are dying and they are caught in this dilemma which they are more or less stuck. If they choose to eat and to receive food from E Axis, they will be shot by W Alliance. If they choose to help W Alliance, they won’t get any food and will starve very soon.
There is one person on the boat who unfortunately has the access to the megaphone of W Alliance and he is causing a lot of confusion. He calls himself “Roffraeel”. He is a typical instigator and he is going around the boat stealing food and getting both E Axis and W Alliance at each other’s throat by blaming the other side for the loss of food. His main aim is to get all the life jackets and food for himself, when there is more than enough to go around. He is armed to the teeth too because he has access to the weapons W Alliance have. Roffraeel doesn’t belong to any of these groups. He secretly harbours the fantasy to steer and control the boat but knows he couldn’t do it alone. So he makes friends with W Alliance because he knows W Alliance have the biggest guns. He is also trying to get acquainted with E Axis but E Axis is aware of his objectives and is treating him with extreme caution. He walks around the boat all the time prancing on the opportunity to steal and shouting with his megaphone to create confusion and chaos. He has a no seat on the boat but is threatening this guy name “Pal” who is from the Third W group to give up his seat or he will blow his brains to kingdom come. Pal is reluctant to give away his seat but is willing to share it but that’s not good enough for Roffraeel, he wants the whole seat. So he goes around to W Alliance and E Axis and lie to them that the seat is actually his and Pal is trying to steal it from him. He claims that the owner of the boat reserved him the right to that seat and he claims he is actually a direct relative of the owner of the boat. So people automatically assume that he is telling the truth because he is somehow related to the owner of that boat, therefore he is associating himself as the owner of the boat indirectly. Recently what happened to Pal was he was shoved off his seat. He instinctively he stood back up and pushed Roffraeel away and sat back in his seat. Roffraeel didn’t like it and shot him several times claiming self defence and because he has the megaphone he told everyone on the boat that Pal attacked him and he shot him only because he was trying to defend himself. Pal is clearly upset and he wants to clarify to everyone on the boat that the seat is his and wants recognition from the major groups that that seat is his. He approaches both W Alliance and E Axis and asked them to recognise his seat and he has the right to it. Both W Alliance and E Axis have yet to make a decision but Roffraeel is trying his best to make sure Pal doesn’t succeed. E Axis is listening but W Alliance is not buying it because they have a cosy relationship with Roffraeel.
Roffraeel being a master of lies and deception has also concocted a story that we do not need to worry about what’s happening because someone will come and save us in the middle of the rapids and waterfall. He has convinced many that that as long as we peddle hard enough we will make it and does not mention anything about the direction the people are going. While the people on the boat are focused on peddling, he steals from all of them. Recently because of all the theft by Roffraeel, W Alliance had to cut back the ration their food but as usual Roffrael blamed this on E Axis and they are constantly at each other’s throat because of that.
The rapids now are in full view. We are just about to reach the crux of it. Many of us see this but many of us also choose not to believe it’s there even after seeing it. Most believe the story that someone will save us from the rapids and waterfall. We have two choices here for the survival of the boat and everyone in it. First we can continue to peddle the boat in all directions causing the boat to spin out of control in the rapids, continuing to fight and argue that one’s method is the only way and it’s the “correct” method and “wait” for a saviour to come to rescue us from our arrogance which will only result in the boat capsizing killing all of us and leaving the boat to whoever will find it even before we reach the water fall. The other choice is that we can stop all this fighting and tell Roffraeel to shut up and work together on peddling this boat in the direction of safety and on to land where we can be free.
It’s up to all of us in the boat to stop for a few seconds and start listening and observing what’s actually happening instead of listening to the guy on the megaphone who has no good intentions. Do we hear the roar of the rapids? Is the Crazy guy who warned us about the rapids earlier now crazy? He warned us and we could have steered to safety earlier but now we are caught in the start of the rapids with nowhere else to go but forward with the current of the river. There are enough life jackets and food to go around if we share and this will give Third W some energy to help peddle this boat to safety too. We all have a paddle in our hands and it’s up to us to work together to steer this boat into safety through the rapids and hopefully we can peddle our way into safety before the waterfall. We are undoubtedly heading towards a rough ride through the crux of the rapids. Get ready for the ride of your life!!
Brian Jonathan Liew