I’m so impressed with the nation of Singapore. The remarkably harmonious diversity of races, cultures and religions in this land is a testament to what can be achieved. Had the incredible privilege of being a speaker at their large Innovation and Enterprise Week held at Biopolis, the massive research center dealing with life sciences. Met so many amazing people from Singapore and other nations and really fell in love with this country and its generous and gracious people.
Singapore is one of the most innovative nations in the world–in fact, it’s ranked #1 in several rating systems–and has some of the most visionary and futuristic approaches to economic development and scientific progress. What impressed me as I learned more and talked with some of its people is the commitment of so many people to the long-term good of Singapore. The petty personal politics that hinder progress in so many spheres of human life seemed surprisingly diminished in the scientific and IP-related circles I encountered, and I repeatedly sensed and saw evidence of a widespread commitment to cooperation and the good of the nation. There is a culture of cooperation that really impresses me.
Talented, intelligent, and tolerant people building a visionary future is one dimension of what I encountered. Add to that the Singaporean commitment to excellent food, and we’ve really got a winning combination. I can’t believe how well I can eat for $3 at the “street hawker” sites where you can choose from numerous cuisines such as Muslim Halal and many varieties of Chinese, Indian, Malaysian, Korean, etc. Then consider that Singapore offers fresh, never-frozen supplies of the world’s greatest plant product, the king of fruit with its foul aroma: durian! Tonight after a spectacular seafood meal with massive chili crab and claypot crab, I was treated to two great varieties of durian: D24X0 and Cat Mountain King. Will one of these species be the official fruit of Zion in the future? Or maybe it will be fresh passion fruit (I got about 20 for just $2!)?
Any of you in Singapore or have you been there? Am interested in knowing more about how members of the Church are treated. I was treated with great kindness, but then again, I’m just a temporary visitor. How is daily life for a Latter-day Saint in Singapore?