mercredi 1 mai 2013

CHENG HO/ZHENG HE TRIP TO THE FAR EAST AND PAK HENDRA

After weathering the Snow storm while visiting the Lakota Indians, I made up my mind to visit Pak Hendra in Bogor. But as  is my routine, I decided to make a few stops to feed my taste buds whether in the palate or the brain.
Rapid City to Chicago to London
Apart from a Bangladeshi Chicken Kebab, didn't indulge in much. A short hop over to Bruselas and then a new experience awaited me on Egyptair to Kuala Lumpur via Cairo.I shall recount that later.


It was time to visit Malacca once again, and renew my acquaintances with all those connected with Zheng He/Cheng Ho, and fortunately the President of the International Cheng Ho Society was in town and that resulted in a wonderful conversation. He gave me copies of two books on Zheng He.
The most recent publication is Zheng He and the Afro-Asian World in which my own modest contribution of Zheng He and his legacy in Cochin, India had been included. The other book is an intriguing one, written analytically by a Professor of Business from Singapore University. He looks at the Zheng He voyages and condenses from it, a summary for the ethical behaviour for a modern day businessman, including happiness all aroundthe workplace and beyond. Zheng He and the Ming Dynasty in the early 1400s were not interested in colonization or conquering or pillaging, but the message was one of peace and harmony.
Cheng Ho/Zheng He's art of Collaboration can be summarized as:
Communication
Capacity-Building
Coordination
Continuity

I knew the right person who was practicing this philosophy, none other than my friend in Bogor, the humble man, Pak Hendra. I bought tickets to Jakarta, but before I had one stop to make which had been long overdue: Kuala Trengganu on the East Coast of Malaysia.
The hospitality of two australians from Thursday Island who have made Kuala Trengganu, their home, included a visit to the Cheng Ho Temple on the shores of the river.




We had an excellent driver, Pak Hashim from Kuala Trengganu, as it is not easy to find this temple.
The next stop: Bogor in Indonesia where the humble man was waiting and also a rich variety of gastronomical delights including some special sundanese cooking which had been prepared as a surprise feast for all of us!


Pak Hendra using his genuine desire to help others as a guiding light, has been able to provide his employees with opportunities to improve their health. This Peer Education for Prevention of Diseases is certainly unique in Asia and perhaps elsewhere as well, since all the employees have up to 3 hours per day to devote to their health and he provides the example by being there, exercising, leading them on a modern yoga/body works routine and providing healthy food for them.
He sprung a surprise, he knew that I was interested in Cheng Ho/Zheng He and he organized a day trip by air to Semarang and a tour of that pleasant city with enough time for me to enjoy the magnificent Cheng Ho temple, Sam Poo Kong.




So on this trip to Malaysia and Indonesia, I was able to visit two places that Cheng Ho/Zheng He had visited and see some monuments.
Also to strengthen my friendship with Pak Hendra who preaches the Art of Collaboration for the common good as preached by the Great Admiral of the Western Seas, the moslem eunuch from Yunnan, Ma Ho, who would remain the greatest admiral of the seas for all times.

In the last few years, I have been fortunate enough to visit 
Semarang
Malacca
Quilon
Cochin
Calicut
Dhofar
all places connected with the Admiral of the Western Seas..