Becoming global-caring people


We continue our thought-provoking discussion on the deeper meaning behind the issues at stake.

This time John Hilley, from that “piece of land called Scotland”, responds to tunglang’s views on work passion and creativity (see preceding post) and challenges some of the prevailing assumptions about nationalism, development, and global competition.

Dear tunglang

Thanks for that heartfelt statement on the higher moral value we might place on the work we do, or strive to do.

Some thoughts, though, on your seeming unhappiness at ‘trailing behind’ the Western nations.

Firstly, remember that a large amount of the ‘enterprise’ flowing from those nations involves the ‘creative’ technology of death and destruction, namely state-of-the-art warmongering, nuclear armaments, ‘security’/surveillance equipment and other forms of life-limiting production.

Secondly, we need to escape this conditioned mindset urging that nations must compete with each other, or using that as the criterion of ‘success’ in our ‘national development’.

Actually, I’m not particularly concerned about that kind of ‘development’ or the ‘advancement’ of any nation with regard to other nations.

Nations and states are, in the end, artificial constructs, held together by the ideology of nationalism, ‘nation-building’ and other power-serving notions of the ‘national interest’.

The main issue is not ‘our country’ or ‘how well’ it’s doing, it’s about how we conduct ourselves as human beings, how we relate to our human community, local and global, and what we do, in all those regards, to produce a better world, socially, politically, economically and, of course, environmentally.

There is, and can never be, such a thing as an “outstanding global nation”, for that requires us to see our work as Malaysian or British or American or Chinese ‘development’ rather than real nation-transcending development actioned by caring, compassionate citizens of the world.

I have no affinity whatsoever with a British arms producer or high banker or City of London speculator.

I expect you feel the same, as indicated by your admirable words on the false ‘creativity’ of market life with all its selfish-driven quest for materialism and status.

Like me, I suspect that you identify with those who aspire towards helping others in the work they do.

It’s just that I tend not to see that in ‘nation-defining’ terms.

Indeed, it goes further than that for me. I don’t even feel the need to identify specially with someone from the arts or sporting field just because they happen to be born in the same piece of land as me.

We can all work, learn, create, contribute, protect, nurture and love as global-caring people without feeling the compulsion to quantify those values in relation to other countries.

Better, I think, that we, more simply, aspire to be good beyond-bordered beings and measure ourselves accordingly.

Best wishes

John Hilley
(A piece of land called)

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Late to the discussion, but here’s my two sens. I call it the immigrant mentality. Many, especially those whose ancestral roots are from elsewhere, are of second or third generation (maybe more) immigrant families that want a ‘better’ future for their children. In this sense, ‘better’ is usually seen as securing a scholarship or entering universities for safe jobs that pay well as already mentioned by tunglang. Immigrants are from poor backgrounds and to climb the economic ladder, would usually want their children to do better and steer clear from the hard labour jobs they are doing. Unless it’ a… Read more »


There is really nothing else to add to this comment. He just highlights the obvious weakness of capitalism and the fallibility of modern day economics. Which we should all be mindful of.


Dear Anil,

I would like to share an awesome video from Ted – Ideas worth sharing in my blog where he talk about the “WHY = Believe” by the people who manages brand which I suppose have a reference to tunglang’s view on passion and creativity.

It is a very inspiring video.