Sunday, February 19, 2017

CAREER PROFILE OF JOE CHELLIAH







CURRICULUM VITAE

                     
                          JOHAMI B. ABDULLAH @ JOE CHELLIAH   D.N.S., A.N.S., P.J.K.
(B.A. & M.A. (Music) Uni. Of Iowa, USA

PERSONAL PARTICULARS

IC No:             440128 01 5551
Address:          232, Jalan Angsana 5/2, Taman Pinggiran Golf, 70400
Seremban,      Negeri Sembilan Darul Khusus, West Malaysia.

CONTACTS

Mobile:         + 6019 6609427
Tel (Home) : + 606771850 (Home)
E-mail :           joechelliah@gmail.com

Marital Status:                      Married
Nationality:                            Malaysian
Race:                                       Indian  - Muslim / Malay
Religion:                                 Islam
Place of Birth:                        Muar, Johor
Date of Birth:                         January 28, 1944

POSITIONS HELD & EXPERIENCE

1.   Event Consultant ( 1993 -   )
2.   Ahli Lembaga Pengarah, ASWARA. (2012 -   )
3.   Hon. Advisor to Music Faculty, Universiti Pendidikan Sultan Idris (UPSI 2007 -)
4.   Ahli Majlis Majlis Muzik Malaysia (MMM) (2002 –  )
5.   President, Malaysian Assoc. for Music Education ( 2000 -2012 )
6.   Head of Music Department, Specialist Teachers’ College, Kuala Lumpur 1996
7.   Music Lecturer Specialist Teachers’ College, Kuala Lumpur 1980 -95
8.   Classroom Teacher Of English, Mathematics, Science & Music In Malaysian Schools In Negeri Sembilan Between 1960 and 1980

EDUCATIONAL BACKGROUND

FORMAL QUALIFICATIONS

Master of Arts (Music) University of Iowa, Iowa City, Iowa. 1987
Bachelor of Arts (Music Education) University of Iowa, Iowa City, USA, 1986
Gred 8 ABRSM Music, London - 1979
Specialist Teacher Certification ( Music) MPIK, Malaysia – 1976
SPM Bahasa Malaysia ( Credit) - 1971
Malaysian Teacher’s Certificate Ministry of Education (1965)
Overseas School Certificate The High School Muar (1959)
Lower Certificate of Education The High School Muar (1957)

LANGUAGE PROFICIENCY

Malay :           Good ( Spoken and Written)
English :         Good (Written and Spoken)
Tamil :            Good (Spoken)

COMPUTER LITERACY

Word Processing, MS, Powerpoint, Excel
Other Software: Music Works, Adobe Photoshop, Autocad
Midi Music Programming & Video Editing
Video Editing
Sound Recording and Management






MUSIC PERFORMANCE EXPERIENCE

PERFORMANCES ON RADIO & TV, HOTELS, LOUNGES, CLUBS AND PUBS BETWEEN 1962 AND 2005.

INSTRUMENTS PLAYED

  • PERCUSSION – Drum, Bongos, Conga Drums, Timbales
  • ELECTRIC GUITAR - Lead and Bass
  • PIANO  & ELECTRONIC KEYBOARDS

GENERAL CONTRIBUTIONS TOWARDS KUALA LUMPUR AND SELANGOR APPEAR IN RED BELOW

  1. TRAINED AND & CONDUCTED THE CHOGM CHOIR FROM MPIK IN 1993
  2. TOOK PART IN CHOGM Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting  in 1989, 18–24 October, Malaysia · Kuala Lumpur… TRAINED AND & CONDUCTED THE CHOGM CHOIR FROM MPIK IN 1993
  3. WON THE SELANGOR SONGWRITING COMPETITION IN 1989. WITH SONG “OH SELNGOR SUNG BY JULIE SUDIRO.
  4. TRAINED AND & CONDUCTED THE CHOGM CHOIR FROM MPIK IN 1993  COMPOSED THE SONG FOR AND CONDUCTED THE MERDEKA /NATIONAL DAY CHOIR IN 1994 AND AT DATARAN MERDEKA
5.      SIGNED the MOU IN CANARY ISLANDS IN2004 between ISME and UiTM as President of Malaysian Association for Music Education (MAME TO  bring THE 29TH ISME 29 (INTERNATIONAL SOCIETY FOR MUSIC EDUCATIO’N29 TO KUALALUMPUR in 2004
6.     WAS ALSO WAS IN THE CONFERENCE ORGANISING GROUP FOR ISME 2006. 29TH Music Education (ISME) World Conference THAT WAS held in KLCC, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia,
7.     COMPOSED THE SONG “PETALING JAYA JAYA” SUNG BY JESLINAHASHIM ON ASTRO IN 2002….YOU TUBE LINK IS AT https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NsxDa0o5Ew4
SIGNING OF ISME MOU AT CANARY ISLANDS
ISME PARTICIPANTS AT KLCC...IN 2006
8.    
THE ISME 2006 THE CONFERENCE ORGANISING GROUP
ISME 29 PARTICPANTS AT KLCC





SERVICE RECORD WITH THE MALAYSIAN GOVERNMENT (36 YEARS)

SCHOOLS DIVISION, MINISTRY OF EDUCATION : 1960 – 1980
(School Teacher – Primary & Secondary Schools in NS)

TEACHER TRAINING DIVISION, MINISTRY OF EDUCATION: 1980 - 1996
(Music Lecturer and Head of Music Dept.)

- Areas/ Subjects – Theory, Guitar, Vocal, Pedagogy, Choir & Music Appreciation.
- Created musicality tests for interviewing potential music teacher candidates                - Conducted National Day Choir for Merdeka 1993
- Secretariat Head for " Seminar Music Traditional Malaysia"  at MPIK in 1990
- Panel member for development of the teacher colleges' curriculum                                        - Panel member for KBSR music curriculum in 1982.
- Oral English Examiner for SPM – 1970’s

MUSIC PERFORMANCE EXPERIENCE

PERFORMANCES ON RADIO & TV, HOTELS, LOUNGES, CLUBS AND PUBS BETWEEN 1962 AND 2005.

INSTRUMENTS PLAYED

  • PERCUSSION – Drum, Bongos, Conga Drums, Timbales
  • ELECTRIC GUITAR - Lead and Bass
  • PIANO  & ELECTRONIC KEYBOARDS
  • MUSIC PROGRAMMING AND MIDI SEQUENCING

OTHER EXPERIENCES IN MUSIC

  • SANG IN THE UNIVERSITY CHORALE OF UNI. OF IOWA AS A TENOR
  • PRODUCED 4 COMMERCIAL ALBUMS UNDER PHILIPS LABEL                  - Roziah Latif & The Jayhawkers - 1965 - 1968
  • MUSIC COMPOSER AND DIRECTOR FOR A MALAY MOVIE “RAJA LAUT” ( KING OF THE SEAS) - 1983



INVOLVEMENT IN CONFERENCES

1.      SEMINAR KEBANGSAAN MUZIK TRADISIONAL MALAYSIA ORGANIZED BY MAKTAB PERGURUAN ILMU KHAS                                            (1991 - SECRETARIAT HEAD)

2.      PRESENTED PAPER AT MUSIC  EDUCATION CONFERENCE 2002 ORGANIZED BY UPM

3.      ATTENDED & SIGNED MOU WITH THE INTERNATIONAL SOCIETY FOR MUSIC EDUCATION (ISME) IN 2004 IN CANARY ISLANDS.

4.      PRESENTED PAPER AT MUSIC  EDUCATION CONFERENCE 2005 ORGANIZED BY UPSI IN TG. MALIM

5.      INTERNATIONAL SOCIETY FOR MUSIC EDUCATION CONFERENCE (ISME 2006 KL) - CONFERENCE ORGANIZING GROUP (COG) MEMBER

6.      PERSIDANGAN MAJLIS HIBURAN DAN KESENIAN TANAH AIR DI JOHOR BARU – 2009 SEBAGAI FORUM CHAIRPERSON

7.      IMC ASIA-OCEANIA WORK CONFERENCE IN XIAMEN, CHINA - 2010
REPRESENTING MALAYSIAN MUSIC COUNCIL (MMM)

8.       INTERNATIONAL MUSIC CONFERENCE AT TALINN ESTONIA 2011 – REPRESENTED MALAYSIAN MUSIC COUNCIL (MMM)
9.      IMC ASIA-OCEANIA WORK CONFERENCE IN TAGUM, PHILLIPINES – 2011 REPRESENTING THE MALAYSIAN MUSIC COUNCIL (MMM)

GENERAL CONTRIBUTIONS TO MUSIC & MUSIC EDUCATION

1.      HON. SECRETARY - MUSICIANS UNION OF MALAYSIA (MUM) 1987
2.      PRESIDENT OF MALAYSIAN ASSOCIATION FOR MUSIC EDUCATION ((MAME 2002 – )
3.      COUNCIL MEMBER – MAJLIS MUZIK MALAYSIA – 2005 -
4.      AKADEMI INDUSTRI MUZIK – JURY 1993 TILL 2010
5.      PERSATUAN KARYAWAN MALAYSIA – LIFE MEMBER
6.      MUSIC AUTHORS’ COPYRIGHT PROTECTION (MACP) – FOUNDING MEMBER SINCE INCEPTION TILL NOW
7.       SULTAN IDRIS EDUCATION UNIVERSITY (UPSI), TG. MALIM. - ACADEMIC ADVISOR TO THE MUSIC FACULTY
8.      COMPOSER OF PATRIOTIC, CHILDREN’S AND COMMERCIAL
SONGS
9.       BOARD OF BIRECTORS AKADEMI SENI WARISAN MALAYSIA (ASWARA)
10.   PRINCIPAL CONSULTANT FOR CULTURE MINISTRY’S PROJECT : REVIVAL MALAYSIAN FOLK SONG AND TRADIONAL SONGS GOING EXTINCT
11.   THE BROADCASTING MINISTRY OF MALAYSIA’S PANEL ON MUSIC INDUSTRY AFFAIRS – 1994 – PANEL MEMBER
12.   COUNCIL MEMBER OF COMMITTEE TO REVAMP THE MUSIC
 CURRICULUM IN TEACHER COLLEGES IN 1988
13.   MEMBER OF SEVERAL PANELS FOR JUDGING ASSORTED 
            MUSICALCOMPETITIONS ON STATE AND NATIONAL LEVELS
            INCLUDING TV & RADIO SHOWS
14.   WROTE A SERIES OF 15 ARTICLES ON MALAYSIAN 
       MUSIC IN MALAYSIAN POPULAR NEWSPAPERS “ THE STRAITS
       TIMES” IN THE COLUMN “MUSICALLY SPEAKING” BETWEEN 1989
       AND 1990.
15.   WRITTEN ACADEMIC BOOKS  & ARTICLES IN INTERNATIONAL JOURNALS

·        Unpublished  Masters Thesis: A Philosophy And Rationale For Music Education In Malaysia From An Islamic Perspective ” – 1987 - The University Of Iowa, USA

·        THE IOWA MUSIC EDUCATOR -  A Malaysian Music Educator Returns Home” 1987
·        THE QUARTERLY - University of Colorado’s journal “ Music Education In Malaysia”  1990

·        AUTHORED A MAJOR ACADEMIC MUSIC REFERENCE BOOK TITLED PENDIDIKAN MUZIK SEMASA ("CONTEMPORARY MUSIC EDUCATION” ) AND PUBLISHED BY DEWAN BAHASA DAN PUSTAKA  

16.   MUSIC DIRECTOR FOR A MALY MOVIE “RAJA LAUT” -  1991

17.   NATIONAL UNION OF TEACHERS (NUT) EX-CO MEMBER – 1972-1975

18.   AUTHORED TWO BOOKS THROUGH DEWAN BAHASA ON MUSIC

19.   MUSICAL COMPOSITIONS - COMMERCIALLY RECORDED BETWEEN 1965 AND 2005


Lagu Ku Ini
Di Lamun Rindu
Idaman Hati
Kasih Ibu
Oh Abang
Kanda Yang Ku Puja
Dewa Hati Saya
Bahagia Kan Menjelang
Dalam Renungan Ku
Sejahtera Pahang DM
Jalan Hidup Mu
Irama Ria
Hilang Di Kabus Malam
Melarat
Musnahlah Harapan
Apa Salah Ku
Mari Kita Ke Taman
Oh Abang
Cinta Pertama
Pertiwi Ku Pahang DM
Alam Remaja
Oh Ibu
Darah Sama Merah
Oh Selangor

COMPOSITION OF CHILDRENS’, PATRIOTIC AND RELIGIOUS SONGS

Pantai Teluk Kemang
Malaysia Yang Ku Puja
Petaling Jaya
Pulau Langkawi
Oh Selangor
Lembah Budi
Dalam Diri – Nasyid
Jalan Yang Benar
Sejahtera Pahang
Pertiwi Ku Pahang Darul Makmur
AWARDS CONFERRED BY DYMM YANG DI PERTUAN BESAR OF NEGERI SEMBILAN


1. PINGAT JASA KEBAKTIAN – P.J.K. 1995
2. AHLI SETIA NEGERI SEMBILAN – A.N.S. – 2000
3. DARJAH SETIA NEGERI SEMBILAN – D.N.S. - 2004

ACADEMIC PUBLICATIONS AND ARTICLES IN MAGAZINES

1.         “ A Malaysia Music Educator Returns Home”, Iowa Music Educator,                               Iowa, USA, Sept. 1987 .

2.         “ Music Education in Malaysia”, The Quarterly, University of Northern                         Colorado, USA. March 1991.

3.         More than 40 articles in the new straits times and the star                                  since 1987 till now regarding msuic and music education.

A SAMPLING OF THE ARTICLES WRITTEN AND PUBLISHED
1.
The Negative Effects of Too Loud Music
2. Reviving Interest in The Graceful Zapin
3. Broadcasting a Fairer Mix
4. Let’s Not Turn A Deaf Year To “Music Pollution”
5. Loud Music Only Serves to Aggravate Stress
6. A True Scholar Should Be Well Rounded
7. Back To Basics to Stop the Mental Decay
8. All’s not well with Our Youth
9. Do more research on P. Ramlee
10. All Round Education Solution to Ills
11. Use R&D Findings to Tackle Nation’s Social Ills
12. We Need To Focus on Liberal Arts too
13. Underage M-Cyclists Menace
14. Tackle Social Ills Comprehensively
15. Don’t Rely Entirely on Final Year Exams
16. Setting Music Education On A Higher Scale
17. Not Music To Anyone’s Years
18. Who Cares?
19. Correct The Over Correction
20. Bring Back the Fun To Kids
21. Talent or Comedy Search Shows?
22. Educational Innovations & Woes
23. Lamentations of a Retired Music Educator
24. Too Loud and Too Much Music Is No Good
25. Music Programs on TV
26. Understanding The Malay Psyche




ACADEMIC RESOURCES BY JOE


1.     Book - Pendidikan Muzik Semasa   - Published By Dewan Bahasa & Pustaka 1993 Dan 2nd. Ed.1995, Rev. Ed. 2009
2.     Book – Pendidikan Muzik Kontemporari - Published By Dewan Bahasa & Pustaka - Rev. Edition. 2009
3.     Autobiography – The Times & Chimes of Joe Chelliah – Marshal Cavendish Publications, 2010
4.     Book – “ Kembara Muzik Joe Chelliah” - Published By Dewan Bahasa & Pustaka - 2015
Add  PRESIDENT KIWANIS CLUB OF SEREMBAN



1.     Book - Pendidikan Muzik Semasa   - Published By Dewan Bahasa & Pustaka 1993 Dan 2nd. Ed.1995, Rev. Ed. 2009
2.     Book – Pendidikan Muzik Kontemporary - Published By Dewan Bahasa & Pustaka - Rev. Edition. 2009
3.     Autobiography – The Times & Chimes of Joe Chelliah – Marshal Cavendish Publications, 2010
4.     Book – “ Kembara Muzik Joe Chelliah” - Published By Dewan Bahasa & Pustaka - 2015


AS EVENTS  & ENTERTAINMENT CONSULTANT

PRINCIPAL CONSULTANT WITH NJ ENTERTAINMENT CONSULTANTS              1993 - NOW

Saturday, September 17, 2016

A SHORT RECAP OF MALAYAN HISTORY
(Joe Chelliah)


Malays from all over the Malay Archipelago came to the Malay peninsula as it was very porous situation then where boundaries were concerned. The ancient Indians, Chinese and even Marco Polo visited these parts and acknowledged the various Malay rulers of the times.
The Malays were quite happy with their simple lives along with their religion and also their traditional agrarian and fishing ways of life .....it even included piracy and raids on commercial vessels by the sea gypsies. Then came the Europeans who saw greater economic opportunities.


While the earlier Portuguese and Dutch confined themselves to trade only Melaka the British began to make greater inroads into the peninsula through what history records as British intervention in the Malay states…and oftentimes at the request of the rulers themselves who were feuding over ascension and other minor things.

The British went on to develop Malaya and made it the largest producer of tin and rubber within a short time….and not without the power and permission granted by the Malay rulers

along with ample pensions for the sultans and their chieftains, visits to England and other "English sophisticated" ways of the times - some even kept handle-bar mustaches..


The ordinary Malays who preferred their traditional way of living did not fancy too much working on plantations or mines and the harsher lives that came with it…..and so the British, with the permission of the Malay rulers again, brought in the Chinese and Indians in and in greater numbers to man these economic efforts and ventures. The British took great pains to keep the sultans happy and also set up special schools (including religious schools) and institutions like the

Malay regiments and a Malay majority police force that are with us till today. Indeed the Malay civil service was a British creation that had posts from ketua kampongs to Chief Secretaries…..also seen till today. Another thing is that the British themselves created laws that prohibited preaching any non-Muslim religion to the Malays knowing full well about Malay sensitivities in the matter of Islam.


When it was time to leave the British negotiated with the rulers and the people’s representatives of the Malays, Indians and Chinese. When the British saw that the Malayans were indeed united under the Alliance Party in 1955 which won a landslide majority, independence was then agreed upon and granted. The Malay sultans, Islam, Malay and Malay customary laws and traditions were left undisturbed. Non Malays were, for the first time, granted citizenship plus the right and freedom to profess their own religion and also learn their mother tongue. Everybody was pleased and Malaya was born.

Now after 50 years or so the situation is not quite the same anymore. The Malay villages are quite empty, the rubber estates are no more and are now existing mostly as oil-palm plantations and also manned mostly by foreign workers. Social development has taken place with widespread educational opportunities that began in 1957 itself. Rapid urbanization and great economic growth has also taken place.

I will not touch on politics (and also about East Malaysia) but would merely comment that it is the single most divisive thing in Malaysian politics today fanned by economic greed.
So there, that’s a short summary of what and how our country is what it is today and from where it came from.

********************************************************************************************************************
THE BRITISH LOVED AND RESPECTED THE MALAYS AND THEIR CULTURE

Believe it or not, it is my position and conclusion that the British actually liked the Malays a lot. They took great care of their rulers/ chiefs and leaders besides the lay people and their way of life by " leaving them alone" and not displease them in any way...in general to be happy and follow their ancient traditions, customs, religion and adat...this is mistakenly seen by some as "abandonment" of the Malays a divide and rule strategy etc.

It was a pragmatic thing if you ask me....all they needed was the goodwill and permission from the Malay rulers which they obtained and developed Malaya as they say it fit....And they had the Indians and the Chinese to do whatever else they wanted in this country....who also by virtue of their occupation and function lived quite compartmentalized in the estates and towns.
The Brits could have easily quelled the anti-Malayan Union protests or any other local "upstarts" with their powerful military...just as how they did in India and throw out all the rulers ( in India they did just that and got rid of hundreds of sultans, maharajas, maharanis and nawabs)...but not here. They even named the new entity Perseketuan Tanah Melayu / Federated Malay States instead of maintaining " Malaya".
So instead of shouting abuses at the British ( penjajah etc), Malays and indeed all Malaysians should instead put up pics of Queen Elizabeth too to celebrate Malaysia Day....the Malays without really abandoning the non-Malays....and also stayed here till 1969 to protect and nurture the young nation from Indonesia and communism.


Monday, July 18, 2016

OUR EDUCATION SYSTEM WAS MESSED UP

The younger generations of today may not know that we once had a great mainstream education system in place during the earlier period of our country's history. In terms of physical infrastructure it was nothing to shout about but our school leavers with the OSC and MCE certificates were recognized well all over the world. Of course the medium was English and the teaching profession had the best of the Form V "graduates". It was, however, only in 1962 we had our first university - UM. The Razak Report of 1956 built the education system slowly over the years since Merdeka up till about the mid 70's.

Today, we still have a good system in place with far better infrastructures and facilities.....BUT....yes, a big "but" comes into play. Our school leavers now mostly go on to do diplomas and degrees in the many many IPTs that abound. This country has never had this amount of graduates ever. Illiteracy has been brought down but..... Yet, most of them end up failing to get the thumbs up from employers. The standard of English too however was sacrificed.
Besides the lack in English language proficiency, work attitudes and bad ethics are often mentioned of the new generation of local grads.....some even say they are half-baked products with very little general knowledge of not only their own subject but also of the world including Malaysia itself. So where and when did we go wrong.
I have been in the system between 1951 and 1996 as a student as well as an education officer. If I was asked when it all started going out of focus I would put my finger on the early years of the 70's when the medium was switched from English to Malay. But it was not too bad in itself but numbers swelled with the opening of more and more IPTs. The whole meritocracy system imploded in 1986 when Anuar Ibrahim was made the Minister of Education, a portfolio that the next prime minister held traditionally. Quantity over quality became the axiom....
Anuar was too young, too ambitious and too idealistic esp. with his ABIM and activist background. He wanted to build Rome in a day. Academic standards and entry level bars were lowered to enable more and more Malays to enter tertiary institutions....non university material found themselves graduating with degrees. There were two exam systems for entering university, STPM and Matriculation. Matriculation exams are reputed to be much easier and have an intake that is 90% Malay (Bumiputera) - positive discrimination gone mad. Bars were lowered.  Traditionally one had to have 2 principal passes and a pass in the General Paper to get the STP and thus qualify for university entrance.  This was changed and I personally know how many with one principal pass only in say, Malay Studies, qualified for university entrance.
Besides all that, Islamic fundamentalist cards were flashed all over the place in an effort to outclass PAS politically. Tun Mahathir must also bear the bigger blame for allowing Anuar to have a free hand in messing our education....that was his gravest mistake. Many more moderate, senior, more experienced and capable Malay leaders were sidelined. Anuar even tried to change the very core Malay language itself with his Bahasa Baku. It was not received by one and all and was discarded the moment Anuar was out of the picture. He also sidelined professionals in preference to his own political whims and fancies.
Former Education director-general Tan Sri Murad Mohd Noor has complained of a “overly bureaucratic education system”...the folks at the MOE are sometimes clueless and even if they have any, political decisions and interferences has put down academic considerations and thoughts.
"A college should remain at college level first. Only the best should be universities. We are so concerned with expanding enrolment at our public and private institutions of higher learning that we fail to ask whether some of these students are ready to pursue degrees................."Should they be pursuing diplomas instead? I think a quarter or even half of the existing number of students pursuing degrees should be doing diplomas. Perhaps this is why we now have a problem of unemployable graduates." - Tan Sri Murad Mohd Noor.
Yes, my analysis is over-simplistic....but I can write a full researched academic article on this subject if not a book......anyway, that would be the work of the current  
professors" in academia, not me...sorry but I am out of here.

Thursday, June 2, 2016

SOUNDING OFF PEOPLE & THE “TEGUR MENEGUR” ASPECTS OF LIFE


The human mind is truly a most amazing thing. It’s learning capacity and even its re-learning capability is almost without limits. A human being learns to react and interact with the environment from the very day of birth itself.  Call it social or cultural conditioning if you so desire but what the the immediate environment does to the mind makes a huge difference. 
Under most circumstances, it starts from the home and parental and family influences. That is why how one interacts with the environment depends almost solely upon the individual’s earliest experiences at home.

There is an Indian  / Sanskrit saying that goes like this – “Matha, Pitha Guru Theivam” which simply means mother, father and God. This is the order of reverence for a human being resulting in the ultimate understanding God. It is first through the mother and then the father that we get connected with God and in the earliest stages of life. The environment is not mentioned in this philosophy although we also learn through imitation of what others do which is what social conditioning is all about. Eating with fingers or chopstics or using the fork and spoon are early manifestations of this phenomenon.
In the Malay language there is a term that would rile up even the meekest Malay to get real mad if someone says to him/her  “kurang ajar”. This literally means and implies that the person it is addressed to has not been well taught and by implication it is a direct insult to his/her parents. Even in English the terms “badly / wrongly” brought up” is no compliment and again reflects on one’s parents but it is not really as biting as the “kurang ajar” label.

In older times parents and elders were looked up to for knowledge and wisdom for guidance to succeed in almost any aspect of life right from traditional skills for survival such as hunting. /. With advent of formal education this social process has been very much lessened in function as well as importance. Yet, it is seldom realized that an average child spends only a few hours at school and the rest of the time “outside” the school and at home most of that time.  Thus in the first few years of the child he/she is “indoctrinated” on how to speak/talk, behave and socialize. This would include language, body language, social manners and mannerisms besides religious orientation.  That is why I always say I am not proud to be an Indian simply because I had no choice in the matter. What if I was born as a prince in Denmark or England or Timbuktu or in the mountains of Afghanistan?

Therefore, although we are all conditioned to learn until we breathe our last breath, this seldom is the case.  Why is this so? Essentially, the human mind is also conditioned to be free  - mentally and physically and resultantly any form of restriction is resented. Try hugging a baby for more than say fifteen seconds.  After a few seconds of initial satisfaction from the hug and the resultant burst of endorphins in the brain, the child clearly begins to show its dissatisfaction at being restrained in this way. Similarly, the child would also resent any correction of any of its behavior which it had learnt before whether correctly or wrongly.
Behavioral change or modification was quite easy to do even by a simple advice or reprimand and sometimes even with a threat of a light beating.  “Spare the rod and spoil the child” is a common saying in English. The Holy Quran too recommends light beating of the child to correct perceived misbehaviors.


Today almost everyone from children to the older folks resent any form of correction or even a suggestion to change a behavior. It could even be something against the law or a societal norm.  In short, our modern society has become quite an unteachable lot. No one ones to be tauht or corrected for that matter – even school kids mind you.

When I was a schoolboy in the 1950’s the school had a free hand to discipline me in whatever way the teachers thought was fit.  I followed likewise when I became a teacher later in the 1960’s and 1970’s. Many of my ex-students who are now nearing senior citizens status would attest to my slapping them around for even small offences like eating sweets in the classroom.  Teachers of the time were fully sanctioned as discipline masters by non other than the parents themselves.  If a parent just hears that his son was whacked by the teacher, the child would get another beating at home. But times have changed and a new word has entered our vocabulary – child abuse. This is an idea that was introduced from the West principally from USA and now being increasingly adopted in toto by developing countries like Malaysia.

In Malaysia the common term “kena sound” or “kena menegur”” in Malay means that someone had been advised or told off by someone older or in authority for a wrong or breach of something.  It could have even been a boss advising his worker or a senior citizen telling someone jumping queue at the post office or traffic lights.  Even school teachers and headmasters have been punched by parents – their crime was simply disciplining children in school.  Because of such change of parental attitudes classroom teachers have let problematic kids alone and let school discipline literally go to the dogs these days.  These same “kids” then become adults and join society at large with a feeling that no one is qualified to discipline them…..even the police for a criminal offence.

In short, we have become a society of untouchables and unteachables.