Traveling in Singapore - 2017
Embrace Foundation is a non-profit,
educational foundation set up to
create better understanding
between people of different
religions, cultures, traditions and
Embrace Foundation works to bring
leaders and scholars of world-wide
religions, cultures and philosophies
together by sponsoring forums,
seminars, lectures and developing
an international exchange program.
Embrace Foundation is particularly
concerned with reaching the world
public through the media.
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Embrace encourages all who can
do so, to learn about other
traditions and cultures by traveling
as “Grassroots Diplomats.” We
hope that people every where
become life long students of our
“ In every man there is something
wherein I may learn of him, and in
that I am his pupil.”
Our friends in Singapore have one of the world’s most beautiful and well planned cities in the world.
Many government planners, including most in the United States could learn a lot from them.
Eastern Traditions, this time we have included a number of photos of churches, (This year
Singapore went all out for Christmas decorations on Orchard Street - see above photos). We also
have a photo of the Maghain Aboth Synagogue and a photo of the Masjid Sultan which was being
renovated in 2015-16. (Above) The Masjid Sultan is always crowded with people both from the back
side facing Arab Street (one of the main tourist destinations) and the street side. So taking photos is
Government Communications, Population & Ad Campaigns
The government in Singapore apparently believes in strong media communications to keep the
diverse and multi-cultural residents feeling like an active part of the decision making process. Many
notices and ads regarding job fairs and other public services, opportunities and decisions are aired
on Singapore television with numerous ways for citizens to register their opinions on matters - or
participate in civic opportunities.
One curious dual ad campaign offered by the government sponsors parent meetings to discuss the
future career opportunities for their children. The ads speak of a near future where scientists
(Stephen Hawking among them) predict that robots will soon replace human workers in large
numbers. The general estimate at present being the elimination of 5.1 million jobs by 2020,
including those of engineers and doctors.
Yet, oddly the government is strongly promoting special financial aid and tax relief for Singaporean
couples to enable them to have more children. (? ! ) The elimination of many jobs is clearly
already happening in Singapore according to their public service ads and is definitely an
issue in the United States with an estimated 102 million working age people unemployed.
(Embrace Foundation addressed some solutions to this issue in our website section entitled:
A Beautiful Synagogue and Unusual Jewish Community
Maghain Aboth Synagogue is the oldest synagogue in East Asia. (1878 ) It was founded by
Sephardic Jews (from the Middle East) but their current Rabbi attended the Ashkenazi Chabad -
Lubavitch theological college in Brooklyn. (The Lubavitch are a new Hasidic movement based on
an old lineage of rebs originally from the Eastern European/ Russian tradition founded by the
Great Baal Shem Tov of Ukraine.) The Sephardic and Hasidic traditions are totally distinct so it is
fascinating that this synagogue has united with their current rabbi. Until we read about their rabbi,
we were quite confused about the Yiddish terminology and Hasidic practices discussed in their
website. Although the original synagogue was on Synagogue Street (1841 -see photo of sign) the
new synagogue was built on Waterloo Street just down from the famous Kwan Im Thong Hood Cho
Temple and the Sri Krishna Hindu Temple.
Gardens By the Bay & the Botanical Garden- A Reminder of Our Planets Verdant Heritage
It would be remiss not to mention the 250 acre “Gardens By the Bay.” This tropical botanical
extravaganza should not be missed. There is also an exceptionally beautiful UNESCO World
Heritage Site - Botanical Garden with so many species of orchids, we can not even speculate as to
their number. Singapore is the hot and humid tropics so take the opportunity to see what is truly
unique and special about this part of the world.