Wednesday, 22 April 2015

awareness for a different cause

Assalamualaikum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh

You know how our country has always been known for having multiple races and we're all free to practice our own culture and what not ? That has always been the thing I love most about our country. The fact that despite our differences in race, religion and skin colour, we still practice a peaceful life.

But, are we losing that..? The headlines are now talking about a group of Muslim protesting against a cross symbol that was put on a church by the Christians. Apparently, these Muslims forced the Christian community to take down the cross which may I remind you, symbolizes the religion that they practice. Just like how in Islam we have our star and crescent as a symbol of our religion. I apologize on behalf of my Muslim family on how they reacted. I will never understand what got into them but I can promise you that I will stand by the Christian community to help regain freedom in practicing their religion as they please. It makes zero sense in my mind and I hope, my blog readers' minds that just because the church was built in a Malay area that the Christians cannot put up a symbol of their religion on the building that they use to practice their religion. It's almost like telling Muslims to not sound the adhaan when it comes to prayer times because it will "disrupt" the peace of the non Muslims.

Religious intolerance should never be tolerated especially in a country that preaches freedom in practicing different religions. Just like how the Muslims in Palestine, Syria and all the countries alike those are fighting against terrorism, trying to regain freedom in practicing Islam as they like for example being able to pray in the mosques they have built or simply to just pledge their faithfulness to Allah SWT without getting killed, the non Muslims in our country should never feel like they can't practice their religion (that doesn't disrespect any other religion in any way at all)  freely just because they live in a Muslim country or even worse, in a Malay housing area. Islam teaches us about peace, tolerance, unity and all the good things we're suppose to practice but why are some Muslims going around forcing people of other religion to not practice their religion as they like ? Even back when Prophet Muhammad SAW was preaching and there were non Muslims who came to the mosque to discuss things with him, then it was time for the non Muslims to pray, our kind and understanding Prophet Muhammad SAW gladly allowed them to perform their prayers in the mosque. This is the man that could do no wrong and not once spoke ill or even lied.. Compared to us, who do not run from sinning every day but still, cannot even try to tolerate each other. I maybe young and there are things that I probably don't understand, but I do know that there is such thing as human rights especially when it comes to practicing religion as they please. I know for sure that as a Muslim, in Islam, I am taught to protect and tolerate the non Muslims, not oppress and be disrespectful towards what their beliefs. 

"O mankind, indeed We have created you from male and female and made you peoples and tribes that you may know one another. Indeed, the most noble of you in the sight of Allah is the most righteous of you. Indeed, Allah is Knowing and Acquainted." Quran (49:13)

here's an article by the Board of Directors of MPF (Muslim Professionals Forum);

      Muslim Professionals Forum (MPF)
Press Release

We refer to the protest by some 50 residents in Taman Medan over the display of a cross on a newly minted church.

This mindless act of hatred and incitement against another religion's place of worship has no place in Islam and deserves unreserved condemnation.

Islam is rich with examples of respect for other faiths, their adherents and protection of their places of worship.

Let us take heed from the best of examples, the prophet Muhammad, peace and blessings be upon him. In a well documented incident, the Prophet received a delegation of sixty Christians from Yemen at his mosque in Madina. They were led by a bishop, Abu Haritha ibn Alqamam, a well respected authority on Christianity. When the time for their prayer came, they faced the direction of east and prayed. Some Muslims out of ignorance protested but the Prophet ordered that they be left in their state and not harmed.

Yet another famed example is that of Umar ibn Al-Khattabb, the second righteous caliph. During his reign the religious freedom of the citizens of Ilya (Jerusalem) and the sanctity of their synagogues and places of worship were confirmed: “This is the protection which the slave-servant of Allah, Umar, the Commander of the Believers, extends to the people of Ilya: The safeguarding of their lives, properties, churches, crosses, and of their entire community. Their churches cannot be occupied, demolished, or damaged, nor are their crosses or anything belonging to them to be touched. They will never be forced to abandon their religion, nor will they be oppressed …” (At-Tabari, Tarikh, Vol III, p. 609, ed. Dar Al-Ma`arif, Egypt.)

It is evident that there is no room in Islam for intolerance towards other faiths and their places of worship and any form of disrespect and desecration is antithetical to the essence of Islam. We urge the authorities to take firm action against the said protestors.

Malaysia is a beautifully plural and diverse nation and we call on all to enforce our respect for one another and their beliefs.

We end with the following all embracing verse.

O mankind! Indeed, We created you from a male and a female and We made you nations and tribes that you may know one another. Al Hujurat 49:13

Let us put an end to all enmity and hatred and get to know one another.

Monday, 20 April 2015

"10 habits of happy muslim couples"

Assalamualaikum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh

I know I've been MIA a lot lately but at the end of the day, I always find myself back in this familiar box where I will always feel like I belong. I came across an article, "10 habits of Happy Muslim Couples'' on (you guys HAVE to subscribe to their website, it's amaaazing!) and I can't help but want to share how much truth there is in the article when it comes to your relationship with your other half based on my personal experience.

The first thing they mentioned was loving each other for the sake of Allah SWT. I cannot agree more on this ! Asyraf and I, definitely have our faults and flaws especially when it comes to religion. Both of us are on different levels of imaan but we continuously try to improve each other. The article doesn't mention about both partners being absolutely religious and completely alike but they mentioned on how these two people should be helping one another grow into better Muslims. I have my days when I forget to read the Quran and sometimes, pray late and other days, can't control what comes out of my mouth. This is when my other half, my sweet Asyraf Bux comes in and reminds me of the things that slip my mind. For me, improving when it comes to religion doesn't have to be going to religious classes everyday or things that are similar like that. I mean if you're already at that point, that's really good but there are times when someone in the relationship is taking babysteps, you need to tone down and fall to the level that will make your other half feel comfortable enough to advise you, talk to you and be open with you. Little things like reminding you to always be kind and gentle when speaking, help you be more honest with yourself and other people, help you to forgive people, help you become more generous or help you recognize and overcome the weakness within yourself. We sometimes forget that these little things are the things that mold you to be a better person, not just praying 5 times a day and fasting for a month. I am so grateful that being with Asyraf makes me a better person in ways I never imagined I could ever be.

"They are grateful for each other and they communicate like bestfriends". That was what they mentioned next. This is so, so important and true. Sometimes, when you've been together for a long time, you forget that the person you now see in literally every ugly state possible was the same person that took hours trying to look good for you and also the person you tried to impress over and over. It is perfectly normal to lose that sense of gratitude for having that person but you need to somehow, somewhat regain the sense of gratitude. Even in my own relationship, there are times I take him for granted and he takes me for granted. We sometimes, forget how happy we are and how much happier we can be. That's when the fights, small bickering about every single thing and arguments will start to kick in. Everything that person does is just wrong. We forget that this person, is someone Allah SWT has personally handed to us and put the feeling of love in our hearts to share with this person. I am guilty too of sometimes forgetting to say "thank you" for the little things he does for me, other days when he's tired from work and I sulk for no reason without thinking of the fact that he's tired, sometimes just something small like taking the time to talk to me before he goes to bed for work or just for no reason at all, forget to appreciate him. But once my ego (plus hormones) has stepped aside, I quickly try to make up for it and make him feel like he's the luckiest man ever. Asyraf, more than just my fiancè and insyaaAllah, the person I'm going to spend the rest of my life with is also my bestfriend. The bestfriend that I talk to about anything and everything. From the things that matter most to the things that people couldn't even be bothered about. In good times and bad, he is always the person I need to talk to and knowing him, even after 15 years down our marriage life, that will probably never change insyaaAllah. I'm able to talk to him when I'm perfectly happy but the most important thing is that when the going gets tough, we communicate even better than ever.

You know how they say always put the other person's needs before yours ? Mhmm, that's not just a saying, guys. Throughout my relationship with Asyraf, up to the point where we're one step closer to marriage, I have always put his needs before my own. Alhamdulillah, he does the exact same thing for me. Everytime we're about to do something, it's always a question of "is he/she going to be okay with it?" or "maybe I should check with him/her first". I'm telling you, this is one way to avoid misunderstandings and even if misunderstandings do happen, you both know that ultimately, both of you have each other's best interest. You need to pay attention to the other person's every need and preference, just so that the person knows that you really care (in case he/she forgets). Small things like how Asyraf prefers his teh o ais limau without the seeds of the lime or he must always have his kicap manis when he eats or how much peach tea and water to mix together so it'd have the perfect taste. He always says it's super wife material when I remember and it makes me so happy because it makes him happy !

The article also mentioned about making each other bloom. It may seem irrelevant but when you're just growing up and getting comfortable in life after school, it's a big deal. Asyraf has been nothing but amazing when it comes to motivating and encouraging me. I wanted to apply Law as my first choice for universities but there was one night that we had a spontaneous talk about my future other than marriage. He reminded me about how good I was in writing and reaching out to people, how I should do something that has to do with that rather than wasting it and taking a degree for the sake of having a degree. He spoke to me about how I inspired him to practice religion more than he was at that time and all the other stuff that actually made me rethink my choice of taking Law. Alhamdulillah, I am now waiting for a response from the universities that I have applied on an English course instead :) I am so happy that I didn't choose Law as my first choice because I probably would have regretted it. This is the kind of thing that makes me sit and think about how lucky I am to have someone who knows me so well and pushes me to be the best that I can be. Someone who makes sure that I achieve my full potential. Alhamdulillah.

Making time for each other was also one of the habits mentioned. No matter how busy you are with work, university, kids or other "important" stuff, your other half should always i repeat, ALWAYS come first. A job or a course you're studying in can always wait or be put on hold for awhile if you feel like your relationship is starting to go into a bad place. Priorities, that's what I always remember. Your priorities, values and importance will determine how far your relationship goes. Yes, there are things that will require a lot of your time but just a 15 minute talk or cuddle with your loved one doesn't hurt when you come back from your busy schedule. At the end of the day, that's the person you'll come back to. Asyraf's job doesn't require him to be at the office at 9 am and he's done by 5 pm. His job isn't fixed, sometimes he has weekends off, other times he's working. But I can tell you one thing, he always makes sure that when he's off, he spends some quality time with his family, my family, friends if he has a lot of off days but most importantly, me. Sometimes, after a day of morning flight and he has work again the next morning but we feel like we miss each other or we just want some time together, we go for a quick meal, just so we can talk and spend time with each other. Naturally, you usually make time for people you want to. So, there must be something wrong somewhere if you are "too" busy for your spouse/other half. 

Ego, evil eye and shaytan. The real enemies you should be fighting together. Realistically, we all have ego. I, too am guilty for that. Especially when I'm in anger or when we're fighting, I always want to win. Not because I really want to anyway but just because ego has made its way into my head. That's when all the gratitude, putting that person's feelings in check, remembering to be more patient with him/her all goes away because your ego has stepped in. Shaytan grins from ear to ear everytime couples fight and suddenly become harsh with each other because they forget that when they're angry they should keep quiet or to put themselves in the other person's shoes. The evil eye are couples that gloat about how happy their relationship are for no apparent reason to the social network, friends, family or any chance they get. Why ? Because they want people to envy them and what not. To me, I share things based on my personal life if I feel like it's relevant. Maybe sometimes posted up on my Instagram or my blog, just so those memories can be seen again. Never my intention to make people jealous or unhappy, Nauzubillah. Shaytan is your biggest enemy of all enemies. Not just when it comes to your relationship but everything in your life. Things like when you hear your friend or your spouse's friend say something ill about your spouse, naturally, people would just believe it. When you don't realize that's actually Shaytan, in a way whispering to you to cause a fight with your other half. Couples who have built a strong relationship, would usually just scoff listening to the news and later on, ASK not accuse but ask their other half if there's anything they should be worried about. 

More or less, these are the things that really stood out to me when I was reading the article. It's so easy to just look past it but 30 years later, you realize you're not happy with the person that you've once pledge your commitment to in front of Allah SWT, family and friends. Every relationship has its own set of problems and bad days but ultimately, it's up to you to make sure that you get back on track. I pray that Asyraf and I will continue to be each other's voice of reason and be the best version of ourselves especially when it comes to religion, insyaaAllah. He is someone I've chosen and insyaaAllah, someone Allah SWT has written for me to achieve Jannahtul Firdaus with. I am so happy with whom I've been blessed with. 

A little quote from the article;