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Canada – Land of Milk & Maple Syrup (Honey) in relation to the Biblical Stories of yore.- by Noor Rahim


 

Canada – Land of Milk & Maple Syrup (Honey) in relation to the Biblical Stories of yore.

 

NOOR R. RAHIMIt was almost 3 ½ decades ago that we decided to emigrate from our beloved Motherland. By no means was this meant to seek financial gains or for the seeking of fresh pasture. Having given ones best to the Land of our Birth we realised that being members of a “minority” of “minorities in our country was indeed one of being a “second class citizen” in their own native country. It is a known fact that the majority of the population wants their own “cliques” to head all key position. All things being equal we have to give some leeway; provided that the person is more qualified; and or is equally capable. No further explanation requires to be said on this, except to state the old saying – “If the cap fits, put it on”.

Come to think of this, most of us voted an Executive President in our Motherland; who touted and boasted of a “JUST SOCIETY” (Dharmista Society he called it), based on National Unity. But these Politicians give “Unity” a new meaning in that it is really one of the “Majority” uniting to rule the “Minority” and the “Opponents” to the regime. Loosely used and with Political rhetoric and fervour was the often used word “Unity”; it was just a Political ploy to garner votes to get into power. For using the word “togetherness” which is more meaningful would have been detrimental to their campaign promises. Reneging on the word “Unity” is much easier than the use of the word “togetherness” which has deeper connotations. However/furthermore the word “unity” had the charm of arousing the passion and emotions of the patriotic.

How the normal “Man on the street” can be coerced and mislead at the “unity” slogan can only be fully understood if you pause awhile and think deeper into the concept; keeping aside whatever prejudices you may have on other fellow beings. This I leave in the hands of the valued and right thinking reader. One must remember that “what goes around will always come back around”.

My application to come aboard the “Noah’s Ark” took just over a year and a half. The approval did come back and to exit the country one had to go through the gruelling and tedious Administrative Gauntlet. But we did survive this onslaught. The entitlement of bringing across $2,000 on four passports was cruelly cut down to $500.00 only. It was a “take it or leave it” situation. So we took it and left our Motherland with something that they could not touch – “Our Pride, Dignity and the valuable services that were given to the country of our Birth”.

We took the ramp that was lowered from the Ark and entered into the great Country of Milk & Maple Syrup (Honey); The Redcoats and the Teepees, for our taste of what real life was on the Noah’s Ark. We were welcomed with “open arms”, warm embraces and with understanding and helpfulness.

When the thrill of entering the new adopted “Motherland” had settled down it was time to find a job; as $500 was not going to stretch long enough to wait for the dust to settle down. We were prepared to do any job to keep the “home fires” burning. The many interview we went to was met with a “have you got Canadian Experience”?

At my first interview at a “Super Market” store for a job that required to stack up displays in an Electronic Section and to look after the general work area; the first question posed was that “magical one” – “Have you any Canadian Experience”? Obviously I did not; having arrived in the country just a week ago. I failed the interview for this $5.00 an hour job. But I did ask the Human Resources Manager. Is there a “Canadian Way” to dust and arrange the exhibits; stack the boxes; and sweep the floor if required? I came to Canada legally and having satisfied the authorities that I was acceptable for Immigration. It is just a small job that I seek and I have to pay $24.00 per month for Health Insurance to the Government per month. I am shocked that the illegal immigrants that landed in Halifax are being looked after – clothed; given health coverage; shelter and a small stipend (welfare) till they got back on their feet. Everyone is bending backwards to accommodate and comfort them. You the taxpayers are going to bear the burden of the costs. Yet it does amaze me that you cannot give employment to a legal immigrant who wants to earn his keep. Is that “just” was the question I raised. The Manager reversed her decision but I respectfully turned it down as I did not want them to think I was “begging”; and I explained it as such.

On the way back home I reminisced of my last day in the ‘‘Services” back home where I told the Head and his deputy – “I rode the crest of the Armed Service and YOU have beached me. But I will wait for the next wave and ride that crest too. Furthermore it is said that – When one door closes; the good Lord will always open another door”. (I never saw those two characters ever again). That “door” did open when I got a call from a Security Company. I applied as a “Security Officer (Guard) and was appointed a “Dispatcher” right away with a princely wage of $7.50 per hour with benefits.

It was not long after that I got into the field of Aviation as a Flight Operations Administrator and then as a Manager of Flight Dispatch in a Feeder Airline. Ending my working career in Government Service as a Lottery Licensing Officer (licensing Raffle Lotteries) for the whole Province. The Good Lord does things happen in mysterious ways.

Yes! I do reminisce of the past 30 years in this great country. To start off with the Canadian experience; which I must say was that the terminology used in Canada differed that of the British way, of which I am used to. I went to a shopping mall and asked them where the “lifts” were situated and no one would give an answer but looked a bit puzzled at the question. I guess they only knew of “Bra uplifts” or is it “Face uplifts”; until a person of British origin told me that in Canada they use the word “elevator” and so it was at the Hardware store – torch light was flashlight and so on and so forth.

Walking back home I saw, to my horror, this notice that said “do not walk on the pavement” – This puzzled me as back home we walked on the pavement and not on the road. They called the road the pavement and the pavement as side walk in this great country. That was an important Canadian Experience indeed. The same it was with the many parts of the motor car. The “dickie” was called the “trunk” and the “bonnet’ was called the “hood” and so on it went. More was to come when I started driving around. I still remember the time I was visiting a friend and in turning at the street to his residence I saw this big board that said “NO EXIT”. So I parked at a small strip mall and walked back to his house; I saw other vehicles turn into the street and drive through. It dawned on me that “NO EXIT” meant it was a “DEAD END”.

So you see Dear Readers this is a rather basic lesson on Canadian Experience. There’s no changing these facts and you got to learn to go with the flow; else you will get lost, at your very own expense. As immigrants we came to a country perhaps to get away from whatever it was in our Native Lands and to start life afresh; and in return we have the great moral obligation of giving back to this great land our own expertise and services beneficial to this great country, that opened its arms and welcomed us into its fold.

We must always keep in mind that we came to this country of our own accord; and in no way should we impose our own customs & traditions on the already existing ones that are deep rooted in the land – unless of course the country deems it as acceptable. But woe be unto us we, the immigrants, fight for such impositions under the “Freedom of this or that” and Fundamental Human Rights, knowing fully well that the Politicians will bend back to get these demands legislated. I wonder why? One great tradition of the Immigrants that needed no imposition on the populace was that the culinary delights that have been brought to this great land from almost all over the World; and has been a panacea for those hungry & thirsty palates that succumb to the satisfaction of their taste buds. At least one can proudly boast of Multi-Culturalism in this field without recourse to creating “splits” or driving wedges in our society.

Yes! Indeed we entered the Noah’s Ark – a Haven for those who needed succour more than any material gain. Noah’s Ark comes out from an ancient Biblical Story and is related in the Christian and Islamic Faiths. I produce excerpts (verbatim) from the various sources as follows:

Noah’s Ark: (Extract from: en.wikipedia.org · Text under CC-BY-SA license)

“Noah’s Ark is the vessel ion the Genesis flood narrative by which God spares Noah, his family, and a remnant of all the world’s animals from the flood. According to Genesis, God gave Noah instructions for building the Ark. Seven days before the deluge, God told Noah to enter the Ark with the household and the animals. The story goes on to describe the Ark being afloat for 150 days and then coming to rest on the mountains of Ararat and the subsequent receding of the waters. The story is repeated, in the Quran, where the Ark appears as “Safina Nuh”. The Genesis flood narrative is similar to numerous other flood myths from a variety of cultures. The earliest known written myth is the Sumerian flood myth found in the Epic of Ziusudra.”

Christian Bible Reference relates Noah’s Ark (Genesis 6-8) as:

The descendants of Adam and Eve had become evil and wicked, and God was sorry He had ever created mankind. He decided the only thing to do was destroy them all and start over! But there was one man, Noah, who was obedient to God and found God’s favor.

God told Noah to build a big boat, called an ark, and He told Noah exactly how to do it. The ark was to be 450 ft. (137 m) long, 75 ft. (23 m) wide and 45 ft. (14 m) high. It was to have three decks, be divided into rooms and have a door in the side.

Noah was to find one male and one female of every kind of animal and bird and take them into the ark. He also had to take food for all those animals. It took Noah 120 years to build the ark and find all the animals to put in it, but Noah obeyed God and did just as he was told.

After the “Great Floods” had receded; Noah built an Altar and worshipped God. God was pleased with Noah, and He promised never again to destroy the earth with a flood. Then God placed a rainbow in the sky as a sign of that promise. The descendants of Noah and his sons filled the whole earth with people again.

I relate the above Biblical stories as I have heard them 7 decades ago when I attended a Roman Catholic College – even though I am of a different Faith. It had an impact on me. When given the opportunity to immigrate it rekindled my thoughts of the Noah’s Ark. At the inception I amazed at the thought; but as time went on I was to find that the Lord’s Morning Prayers were no longer recited in Schools. Saying Merry Christmas was considered politically incorrect. As time went on the phobia of “politically correct” encountered you at whichever way you turned and at every nook and corner. This has been exemplified with all types of “Freedoms” that one can think of – be it good or bad.

Yes! I could see that the Good Lord only thought of the Good and destroyed the evil; but he did not cater for the breed called “Politicians”. To mind comes the exception – one of the very staunch Political Icon of over a hundred years ago – the late Sir Wilfrid Laurier. A statesman whose principles were built in creating a great Nation on the solid foundation of spiritual and moral values. His was a concept of “Dedication to the land and its Peoples”. Presently one can only surmise that Politics is a highly lucrative profession (not dedication). Laws are enacted for the garnering of votes rather than the long term effects it would have on the many Peoples of the Land and the great country as a whole.

In the process are we tending to forget our moral and spiritual values? If not; one should ask oneself why Churches (Places of Worship) are being boarded up and put up for sale. Why are the perennial Christmas Carols/Songs finding its way into oblivion in Public places? Christmas Time is only used as an excuse for frenzied buying of gifts rather than the veneration of a Great Spiritual Leader. The list goes on and on unabated as it is. Are we really entering an era of Spiritual Decay? Worse still is the number of murders and drug related deaths that are mounting – is this the entry into the era of Moral Decay? The more that one thinks of; the more that one is reminded of the Biblical story of “Sodom & Gomorrah”. Will all this lead to an invitation to the “Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse” symbolizing Conquest; War; Famine and Death?

So Dear Readers! Take a few minutes of your precious daily life’s routine; think back in hindsight and see if the Four Horsemen are on the horizon; or have they arrived; or will they dawn on us in the not so distant future. It’s yours to ponder and ask yourself why? Or how can we circumvent this catastrophe. Please give it your thoughts.

Noor Rahim                      

 August 03, 2018





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