Friday, August 16, 2013

Penang Yayyy!


Alhamdulillah wa shukrulillah.
It's Friday. Jum'ah mubarrak people. [All of you except those whose tongue is moist with lies!]

Alhamdulillah indeed that Allah makes our tongue moist with zikrullah. Zikrullah (remembrance of Allah) is more than just holding a tasbih/misbahah and doing our regular wirid with the hand. Zikrullah also means remembering Allah and not forgetting that He is watching and listening always. 

Some people think Allah is deaf, so they fool us with lies after lies and throw a hundred bricks in our face like it's nothing. But it matters not, because we are alright by the will of Allah. That is a statement of faith. Our conscience is clear. Indeed to have a tongue that does not lie is a better gift from Allah than a holiday in some exotic island, chilling at villas with private pool costing USD 2000++ per night. A straight tongue is worth a lot more than that. Alhamdulillah! 

Anyway people, I am very happy to be writing from my hometown Penang : )

I am so looking forward to tomorrow and Sunday, for a conference called 'Penang and the Hajj'. I have heard from my mother many a time about the nostalgic experience of sending family and friends for hajj on a cruise ship. This was decades ago. Penang, due to its above par port facilities and well-managed hajj services, was a regional hub for would-be hajj. According to my mother, one of our orang kampung [villagers] named Pak Din died en route Makkah. He was "buried" in the Red sea, sadly.

The ship would be home for the hujjaj for at least a month. Except for those who could afford a cabin, the rest would just camp quite freely and simply marked their imaginary open air room using their luggage - a big bulk of which comprised of food supplies to and fro. My late great grandma used to prepare kilos of tamarinds as snacks for friends and relatives. This was her annual hobby as the hajj season approached.  

Well wishers who sent off the would-be hujjaj at the Penang Port would almost always cry the moment the ship began to unberth at the sound of azan. I imagine these moments must have instilled a deep spiritual longing for the well wishers - to want to perform hajj too, no matter how far-fetched an idea it might have seemed for many who could not afford it. 
I hope to share more great stuff from the conference, tomorrow or Sunday, InshaAllah.

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