Try as I might to run from terse discussions of religion, sex and politics, I find myself tripping in both countries over the same triune subjects . Amir Muhammad, a Malaysian columnist, now turned filmmaker once observed how absurdly the Malay heroine pursued by an assailant runs in high heels and then when caught, struggles impotently, shrieking, “lepaskan aku,” or “let me go”. “Why?” he asked, “Does it never occur to a woman to kick the damn heels off and run or when caught use those heels to either kick where it hurts or gouge out the assailant’s eyes?”.
He was right. And when time came for my strength, courage and will to be tested, I fought back, fiercely and determinedly, but my enemies were too powerful for me. I lost.
Or did they?
Ten years have passed since I lost, and they won, I still wear my high heels and here in the snow, greet God and man, in them. I have lost many more battles since then and know more about my weakness than I do strength but I have learned to pray,
“O’ My Jesus, forgive us our sins, save us from the fires of hell and lead all souls to heaven, especially those most in need of Thy mercy.”
Recently, my friend, an American Catholic priest was angry at me when I excused myself from politics stating that I had no interest in it and did not want to get involved. He accused me then of practicing and writing the ‘politics of convenience’. He knew he said, of my writing and interest in Malaysian politics and he was interested in both, Malaysian and American politics and anyway, the Bishop had recommended that the church get involved in politics.
I listened to my elder and appreciate his viewpoint but when it comes to calling, conscience and vocation, I believe that one ought to take it to the Lord in prayer. As I sat quietly in church, gazing at the man who died for my sins and the sins of the world, into my head floated this sentence, “Jesus’s true politics is love.“