Sunday, September 25, 2016

Morning breeze from Fragrant Land

Bismillah.

Oh what joy to receive good wishes from that fragrant land!

We say Alhamdulillah and we pray for our friends who have always been generous towards us, offering kind words and gentle gestures. 

And how can we not be delighted about warm greetings coming from the Haramain?

So here I am extending the good vibes I received from two buddies who are still in Makkah al-Mukaramah. They sent me some lovely photos and thoughtful prayers early Sunday morning, today the 25th of sweet September, a great start to another wonderful day. 








We call upon the Owner of the Kaabah
the Most Compassionate Host of the Holy Land
towards Whom all pilgrims direct their aim
to that one centre which all faces and hearts align
near and far
We call upon the Lord who forgives all pilgrims
to also forgive those for whom they seek forgiveness

Count us all in
Befriend us
let us know You rightfully
enable us to love You truthfully
bless and protect us with Your mercy
so we may bow to You and serve You sincerely

Ameen.


p/s

And guess who's the other person who sent me good wishes early this morning? Hah hah...



Someone thought I looked like 35.
Nah...make it 30. Sixteen years younger. LOL
And I shall drink 2 liters of water a day, to validate that : D
Alhamdulillahi hamdan yuwafi ni'amahu wa yukafi u mazidah

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Candle in the Wind | What's your craft?

Bismillah.

"And it seems to me,
you lived your life
like a candle in the wind
never fading with the sunset
when the rain set in...."

Which path did you take today?

As I was buying breakfast for me and mom, I heard someone sang this song, and that moment charted a series of unexpected wonderful moments for the rest of the day. 

It's common to have buskers at my regular breakfast joint on weekends. Thus I was a little surprised when I heard a beautiful male voice singing "Candle in the Wind" this morning. My eyes hurriedly search for the singer who appeared to be almost hiding behind a pillar. He was alone. The buskers I had seen performing there was a group of veterans. I'd never seen this gentleman before.

I was moved and a little puzzled, why today? It's Thursday. I thought this person might have a special need today, so he decided to turn up and do his thing. One craft he is good at is singing, obviously. So, there he was. 

It suddenly dawned on me that Allah has given him a craft so different from mine. I have got a permanent job - the only job I know how to do. But I was late for work. This guy was early, already out there sharing his craft. He beat me! 

There for a short while, our paths crossed. I was mesmerized by the lovely song he sang, Sir Elton John's song which many of us are so familiar with - "And it seems to me, you lived your life like a candle in the wind..."

I handed him a small token in exchange for the beautiful moments of awakening and gratitude. I was sincerely moved and joyfully entertained by his honest performance and the rawness of his craft. 

Frankly speaking, I usually give $X to buskers. But I was so touched by his presence so I gave him $YY.
     
The feel-good vibes I bagged in the morning stayed with me throughout my busy day at the office. Guess what? Just before I called it a day, I got an unexpected gift, worth five times more than what I gave away to that busker! Subhanallah. Allah Al Latif. Allah Kareem

And someone randomly told me - "Heaven is your reward Eza, for taking care of your mother." Ameen I said : ) 

Absolutely grateful that the Lord made me walk the path I took today. The Lord teaches us in the subtlest of ways. The Lord grants us in the most gentle of ways. Subhan is Allah.





"Red candle" in KL tonight.

p/s
The day after: I got another unexpected gift worth five times more than what I gave away, so that makes the total reward tenfold! Subhanallah! Allah's words about sadaqah are so true. 

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Merging night and day

Bismillah.

This glorious sunrise photo ought to be here. It's beautiful, Subhanallah! How fortunate some people are, they get to enjoy a great view of the sunrise AND sunset right in front of their house. It deserves a celebration! 

This saying by Oprah is apt:
"The more you praise and celebrate your life,
the more there is in life to celebrate."

But of course, as stated in the Quran, Allah says:
"If you are grateful,
I will certainly give you more."

Sunrise up north Peninsular Malaysia 

You may recall from yesterday's posting the brilliant sunset hues taken from the same location as the above sunrise photo. It's kinda hard to tell the difference between sunrise and sunset from both photos. 

I think life is sometimes like that. One look at a particular situation, it might appear the same. But it could be totally 180 degrees opposite, like night and day. We would only be able to tell the difference if we wait a little longer. We will then see if darkness takes over or if it would shine. Either way, we'll have to wait and see what the Creator is unfolding in a given situation. Either way, we'll know and we'll have to accept when the night enters the day because [God willing] the time will come for the day to enter the night. And through the passage of time, we will get a better picture of what He intends to reveal. In hindsight, we always understand things better.  

"He merges night into day and He merges day into night and He has full knowledge of the secrets of all hearts." - Q57:6

Sunset up north Peninsular Malaysia
(Taken from the same location as above pic.
Photo credit: Brother Y)


Indeed He knows the secrets of all hearts.

You and I read what is written, but each with a different intention and therefore each takes away a different meaning. And we read between the lines. But none of us could tell for sure the secret that lies between the lines, what more secrets that are hidden in the heart. To each, his own and only the Lord knows all about His own creations.

Good night from KL.

KL Tower is blue tonight.
She is probably singing
"When I am feeling blue
all I have to do is take a look at you, then I'm not so blue.
When you're close to me, I can feel your heart beat, I can hear you breathing near my ear.
Wouldn't you agree, baby you and me
 gotta groovy kind of love "
; )

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Andai ku lebih tahu akan diriMu | A Malay poem for "you know who you are"

Bismillah.



Di ufuk langit paling utara
Ku lihat Nama mu sungguh indah
Kau perlihatkan detik-detik berlalu
persis wajahMu tanpa suara 
seiring hari yang melabuhkan tirai
menutup episod masa nan pelbagai

Telah Kau ajar Nama-Nama Mu
saat janji azali
namun mengapa aku seolah-olah alpa?
Ku hitung, ku intai
Tafakur, menunggu...berharap
disulam kejahilan
akan DiriMu
yang Maha berdiri sendiri
sedang aku berdiri di malam hari
memanggil-manggil kala melangkah
berbisik-bisik dalam duduk ku
termimpi-mimpi dalam baring ku
seolah Kau jauh...
sungguhpun hakikatnya dekat
aaaamat dekat

Andai aku lebih tahu akan diriMu
sedalam-dalam naluri
agar lebih damai hati ini

sedamai senja jingga di utara
senyaman butir-butir udara
semua itu 
semuanya...
berdiri atas Nama-Nama Mu 
yang paaaaling indah
Engkau Tuhan yang Satu...

- E.Ismail, Kuala Lumpur, 20 September 2016

*****

A good friend, a reader of this blog whom I deeply respect, sent me the above photo captured by her son. It's breathtaking, it inspired me to write a Malay poem. I apologize to our foreign-readers. I might on another occasion have it translated for you in sha Allah.
I am just happy to be writing from my heart. It's a private space shared with those who share the same vibe. I am not bothered by those who are outside.
It's a joy and such a blessing that despite being apart, our hearts and minds connect.
Thank you. I appreciate you and you know who you are.

Below picture was taken at one favorite spot at my Penang home during my recent trip back home.  I feel the same way about you as I was feeling in the pic - I feel happy, relaxed and so "at home" when I think of you. Our souls must have been on the same rank then, as it is so in-sync now.
    

  




Monday, September 19, 2016

Time | What really matters

Bismillah.

They say: "Time has a wonderful way of showing us what really matters."

Of course! Because, as what the Prophet said: Let not anyone of you say "Woe to time" for Allah is time.

Therefore, surely Allah has a wonderful way of showing us what really matters!  Just that sometimes He has to put us in a certain circumstances for a long while for us to see, feel, listen and learn. And grow! The Master knows better how to manage His servants/creations. 

Just a short reminder to myself as in all other postings. Short but lengthy in reflection ; )


4 p.m. in Kuala Lumpur
Observing another Maghrib in KL
Was shamsu tajri limustaqarrin laha
za lika taqdirul azizil alim

May this week be another peaceful and fruitful week.
Ameen.




Sunday, September 18, 2016

Remembering Dr Haron Din - Malaysia's foremost spiritual healer | A caliph buried in Calif

Bismillah.

He was a household name really. He was well known among the Muslim communities in Malaysia for his prowess as a spiritual healer.

On occasions, spiritual healing is synonymous with physical healing, as far as his knowledge and skills was concerned. Yes, I think that's what all the popular religious Muslim/Malaysian personalities should aspire to be. They should move beyond preaching theories. They should get actively involved in caring for the Muslims, in sickness and in health. Most of them probably are, but Dr Haron Din shall remain a benchmark for a long time.
    
Dr Haron Din or Dato Dr Haron Din (1940 - 16 September 2016) passed away on a historical date for Malaysia - it was Malaysia Day. He was 76 when he died on a foreign land 8,000 miles away. He was in California seeking healing. Dr Haron Din passed away at Stanford University Hospital on the best of days - Friday.    

Dr Haron Din had not been in the best of health, yet he kept active doing charity work. The last stint was about two weeks prior to his demise. Masha Allah. Surely his legacy, especially in healing through Islamic methods, will stay alive through Darussyifa' Treatment Centers which he founded in 1988. After 28 years, Darussyifa' has trained some 6,000 healers and as if to "seal" his decades of hardwork and dedication, Dr Haron Din had just recently set up the Darussyifa' Foundation, channeling humanitarian aids to worthy recipients.

***

Like most Malaysians, I was surprised to learn about his passing in California. As I read the news report of his death, hearing about his final passage in San Francisco, Stanford, Santa Clara, Livermore, the whole Bay Area - brought shivers down my spine. I lived in Calif for two years of my life. It's unimaginable to have one prominent Malaysian muáleem choosing to be buried at such a faraway place. But of course, "No one knows in what land he shall die, surely Allah is Knowing, Aware." And we know not which part of the Earth shall envelope our lifeless body. And we know not who will be our final neighbor.

But then again, for a learned, areef and abid like Dr Haron Din, he shall "live" forever more in Livermore and it does not matter where he gets buried in the end, for he is seeing his Rabb no matter where!

Innalillah wa inna ilai hirajiun.

Photo credit:
https://www.facebook.com/harondinofficial/
Dr Haron Din breathed his last breath at Stanford
(a little to the left of Palo Alto seen on the map/left of the Bay);
then taken for prayers at the Muslim Community Association in Santa Clara
(southeast of Stanford)
and then to the final resting place at Livermore
(northeast from Santa Clara)

Al Fatihah to Dr Haron Din,
his new neighbor Nelson Yero Lecky and all others
at Five Pillars Farm Cemetery
in Livermore, California.
Dr Haron Din - a caliph buried in Calif.



Note:
- Interesting read about California tracing its origin to the Arabic word Caliph:
https://www.kcet.org/shows/departures/california-calafia-khalif-the-origin-of-the-name-california
- The California State Assembly passed a bill declaring August 2016 as "Muslim Appreciation and Awareness Month". California has the largest Muslim population in USA (1 million), and the biggest number of mosques (240 masjid) than any other states in USA.
http://www.breitbart.com/california/2016/08/01/muslim-california-proclaim-august-appreciation-month/  

Reference:
http://www.astroawani.com/berita-malaysia/6-fakta-penting-kaitan-dr-haron-din-dan-darussyifa-116911



Saturday, September 17, 2016

Fruit of one's labor | That which He manifests in a given time

Bismillah.

Ahh....gotta document this - the fruit of my labor yesterday and today. Alhamdulillah for good health so we are able to work that body. Alhamdulillah that He keeps manifesting all kinds of gifts - big or small - at His appointed time. 




I have been busy re-arranging the furniture at my crib in KL, dust off each book and tidy up those shelves. So...it's now time to chill. Ya Huu! 

Here's one quote from one of the books on that shelf. It's an advice from Shaykh Ibn Athaillah as-Sakandari on how to deal with time. How we should accept each and everything that He chooses to manifest at His perfect timing and not ask for a better or any other situation.

Aphorism: 
"It's sheer stupidity to seek to introduce in a given time what Allah has not manifested in it."

Meaning:
"Only Allah does know what is better for the servant. Since a servant cannot predict what is good and what is bad for him, it is not fair for him to seek for a better situation. He is requested to make better use of whatever situation given to him rather than asking for a better situation. The servant becomes more sincere and honest if he works for the master in whatever situation he was asked to work without asking for a change in the situation of the work. If he believes that he can become more productive and efficient in a different situation, it is tantamount to believing that he knows better than Allah what situation is better for him."

Wish y'all a pleasant and productive weekend. May we remain content for whatever situation He chooses to manifest for us, each day, each time.

Allahu a'lam.