Friday, September 25, 2015

Day of barakah

Bismillah.

These pictures mean a lot to me. 
Alhamdulillah wa shukrulillah.

It's a special day. It's Friday and I got to spend the day with this special group of people - tahfiz students from Cambodia and their teachers from Sri Lanka. Yahu!

I am not one who celebrates birthday, but it so happened the small Eid feast we wanted to do with them falls on my birthday. So I thought, let's get a cake. Indeed they are the best lot to share one's cake with. And no one else was invited, sorry LOL. 

You know, one of my specialties is fried spring rolls which I make once or twice a year and it's been 2 years since I last made some, LOL. But for this bunch of sweethearts, I gladly rolled up my sleeves to make my "legendary'' popiah goreng - that's spring rolls in Malay.




Notice how clean the plate has become for that boy?
: )
Every kid loves cakes. 
You can tell from the look on their face.
May we have more parties. Ameen.



Thursday, September 24, 2015

Eid Mubarak \ Eidul Adha 2015

Bismillah.

AsSalam dear respected readers,

Alhamdulillah we should be grateful that we are able to spend the Eid in a harmonious and happy state compared with those who are less fortunate, those whose countries are in dire circumstances.

Personally, Eidul Adha is the only day I could mingle with the fuqara and masakin. They are in fact blessed people because they make you feel humbled and contented just being around them. 

There was a couple of small incident during the qurban program at Penang State Mosque today. The thing which I feared most actually happened. One cow escaped and ran amok! Luckily it was not for long and good that the mosque's bilal who acted as emcee did a splendid job. He's hilarious, so half a day spent at the mosque was all worth it. The imam himself was humble enough to help pack my family's meat portion. MashaAllah

Because most of the cows were pretty moody, I did not dare get close, except for this timid looking buddy, but still within safe distance LOL.

   


My family's cow.
This guy is not from Malaysia, I was told.
Rough looking chap.

You all know the hadith narrating the virtues of participating in qurban, that the first drop of the person's qurbani animal actually brings about forgiveness for a person's sins and that it will be a cause for the person's scales of deed to increase manifold.

It's amazing the bonus the Lord has in store on 9th Zulhijjah for those who fast and then on the 10th, we are being offered more pardon and rewards. Indeed Allah is Most-Forgiving and His bounties are plentiful.

Eid Mubarrak.



Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Shaykh Imran Angullia on the significance of the Day of Arafah and Eidul Adha Greetings - Exclusive for Al Falah TV




Bismillah.

As the hujjaj prepare themselves for the auspicious gathering at Arafah, it is good for us to listen to pertinent message from pious and learned men like Shaykh Imran Anguillia. The shaykh speaks on the significance of the month of Zulhijjah, particularly the 9th of Zulhijjah or the Day of Arafah.

Shaykh Imran Angulia is a Singaporean scholar who travels to Malaysia regularly for majlis taálim. He is a graduate of Darul Mustafa in Tarim, Yemen. He is a mureed of Habib Umar bin Hafiz, Habib Kazim AsSaqqaf and Shaykh Umar bin Hussain Al Khatib, to name but three.

***
On this blessed Day of Arafah, our thoughts are with our friends who are performing the hajj; the hujjaj and their relatives who have been affected by the 11 September crane accident and victims of the fire incident on 17 September. There is not a single affliction that is wasted or unaccounted on the Mizan. For those who are yet to perform the hajj, we know not if we'll ever get to do it. We know not what Allah has in store for us.

Let's recite this duá attributed to Prophet Yaacob alaihisalam so that Allah Al Latif will be gentle on us and ease our affairs in this world and the hereafter. I have just learned it from a hafiz. He said to recite this 13 times after each solat.



Wassalamualaikum warahmatullah.

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Al Ansari Spirits | In each other all along

Bismillah.

MashaAllah tabarakallah.....a dear sister in faith, one respectable reader of this blog, went for a spiritual retreat at Masjid Abu Ayub Al Ansari in Turkey. Her 'spiritual station' was within the vicinity of the sacred mosque. A great deal of her three months there was spent in seclusion. She had no access to internet. No access to mobile phone either. Can you imagine that? I don't know about you, but I check my phone every 2 minutes! Astaghfirullah. 

And thissss....is by far, the sweetest and most meaningful words anyone has ever said to me: ''Eza, I remembered you every time. You were always with me. Believe me, you are a very special person. May Allah bless you."

MashaAllah....Aunt Shabeena...I wanna cryyyyy. It was only yesterday that I mentioned you in this blog. To hear from you after so many moons have passed, and to hear those wonderful words from you...Alhamdulillah! May Allah bless you a million times more for your kind thoughts and your love for this struggling faqir. It means a lot to me that you remembered me at such a sacred site while you were engaged in such a blissful vocation. Jazakillahu khair!

I am reminded of this often quoted saying by Mawlana Rumi:
"Lovers don't finally meet somewhere. 
They are in each other all along.''

I love you for the sake of Allah my dear Aunty!
You have made my day, my month, my year.

May Allah sanctify the secrets of Abu Ayub Al Ansari.
May we benefit from Ruhhul Quddus such as his.
Ameen.

Masjid Abu Ayub Al Ansari
Pic credit: www.2.bp.blogspot.com

p/s

To our Malay readers, it might be of interest to you that this coming Friday, I will InshaAllah launch a blog in Malay. It's called Bahasa Kalbu.
It's going to be a lil more personal and laidback LOL.

'Kalau kau sudi menyentuhi hatiku
Aku kan selalu dekat padamu...'

: )


Sunday, September 20, 2015

Look out - Look up - Dream

Bismillah.

Good morning folks : )
Good morning Aunt Shabeena : D
A special greeting for you my special reader from Spain.
Good morning from beautiful Malaysia.

One of the tricks in public speaking they say, is to imagine speaking to just one person in the audience. I guess it's applicable to writing too. In my case, oftentimes I write for my self as a reminder or as a spirit booster. Yes Eza you've got to keep writing and keep your dreams alive.

Saw this as I stepped out on the hotel balcony this morning. It's a big word. Dream is a big word because we all have big dreams, don't we? The first photo was taken at 7 a.m. and the other one at 7.45 a.m.

7.00 am Dream

7.45 am Dream

Dreams can and should get more vivid over time. See that difference in 45 minutes? Of course it will look different at night as there will be spotlights. But the point is our dream must be kept there. We must keep our dreams alive. 


And yes we have to look out, look up and be conscious of our surroundings. We have to get out of the box and stand on the balcony to enjoy the view. The view is always there but if we refuse to step out of our comfort zone or 'safe' zone, we will never get to catch a glimpse of what is out there. And we have to align ourselves with a system to success. Anything that is misaligned can't work. [I thought those perfectly aligned balconies are pretty neat.]

Anyway, a system to success is about repeating a few simple disciplines everyday. By discipline we mean positive constructive action. Repeating errors/mistakes everyday is a system to failure. This I shared in a couple of postings ago. Picked that up from my trainer. Writing is about sharing. 

One system to success which I am trying to follow is: Write 500 words a day. It's not an easy feat for an amateur or should I say a would be - pro. I came across this interesting quote from Brain Pickings:

"The essayist is a self-liberated man, sustained by the childish belief that everything he thinks about, everything that happens to him, is of general interest. He is a fellow who thoroughly enjoys his work, just as people who take bird-walks enjoy theirs. Each new excursion of the essayist, each new 'attempt', differs from the last and takes him into new country. This delights him. Only a person who is congenitally self-centered has the effrontery and the stamina to write essays.''

But I think it is equally correct to say a writer is selfless and unselfish because when you write, you actually open up a lot about what goes on in your mind and heart. A writer pours out. A writer does not hoard. Not everyone is prepared or willing to do that. 

I am writing this amidst a noisy background as people are busy helping themselves to a breakfast buffet. It's good to be in my own zone and write anyway. The inner zone is a beautiful place. No one can rob you from your inner zone. That's why they say happiness is within, so no one can rob it from you, unless your definition of happiness is with-out. That's not a good idea - to have your happiness being dictated by the external - because the outside world changes and is forever volatile.

Suddenly I am reminded of this advice from Ustaz Shuib. I used to visit him right til his last day. This was in 1999. He said: Eza if anyone tells you, "Óh, you have changed.'' You must say and believe in your heart ''I am with the Qadim". What does that mean? It means you are anchored to the Lord who is Qadim. Never mind your outer, never mind the outer, never mind the changes on the outside. Keep yourself anchored to the inner, to that which never change, the eternal. Subhanallah.

Signing off on this beautiful breezy Sunday morning, signing off with the inspiring tunes by Kelly Clarkson 'Á Moment Like This'. The song starts off with a thought provoking line:
What if I told you it was all meant to be?

??

: )

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Book \ Bend

Bismillah.

Ahh... the feeling when you have done it again - read an inspiring book, cover to cover. 

Here's one of many quotable quotes from the book I was reading.





This pic reminds me of beautiful Scotland. Beautiful memories. Alhamdulillah!

Today is a public holiday in Malaysia as we celebrate 'Malaysia Day' and I have spent the day reading, round the clock because:

Books are the quietest and most constant of friends,
they are the most accessible and wisest of counselors,
and the most patient of teachers. 

And thanks to a dear pal, I have got four new books waiting to see their reader. To state the obvious, reading opens up our mind so we broaden our perspective, so we know a bend in the road is not the end of the road. We have got to be flexible and be brave to take the turn. We have got to have positive expectation on what lies as we go around the bend. Because when we have a positive expectation, we can only expect to see something positive. [Hah hah it's been a long time since I last did a 'tautology'].

I'd better stop rambling, get some sleep now and dream about more books.




Doc in Vietnamese means to read.
My holiday is all booked.
p/s Thank you Mr Sibook : ) 




Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Trust - Tausiyah by Habib Omar Al-Jufri

Bismillah

Alhamdulillah wa shukrulillah, Allah is indeed Kareem. I have not been able to attend majlis ilm as regularly as before. One of the reasons is because I would rather spend time with my dearest mother who has just turned 76! Alhamdulillah for this great blessing of being able to spend decades of my life with her. I humbly ask you my dear friends/genuine readers of this blog to please make duá so that my mother will continue to have good health and a happy meaningful life; that she and I could go perform hajj soonest; that I would be able to fulfill her every wish to the best of my abilities. Ameen.

In this tausiyah [Btw the shaykh speaks in English! Yahu!] Habib Omar Al Jufri says it's better to be of service to one's mother than attend majlis ílm or go for jihad in a battle. I feel fortunate and regard it as Allah's generous gesture upon me this faqir that even though I'm not able to attend as many majlis taalim as I wanted to, I get to watch recordings of many tausiyah before anyone gets to see it on Al Falah TV Youtube channel. Allah Kareem! Allah Kareem! May Allah bless each one of the team members for making this possible. May Allah reward you abundantly and accept our deeds. Ameen.

Habib Omar Al Jufri begins his tausiyah with a weighty statement:
'Allah subhanahuwataála owns everything, decides everything, does everything, whether we believe it or not, whether we feel it or not. If we don't have trust in Allah, who can we trust? If you don't trust Allah, you cannot trust anybody, you cannot trust even yourself.'

'Good or bad will happen. If you accept what happens, Allah will be happy and grant you everything you desire. If you don't accept what happens, you cannot do anything about it. You will be sad and get nothing. You will lose ar-Rahmah and ar-Ridwan or acceptance from Allah. If we don't accept what Allah makes to us, we can't do anything about it. It is not in our hands to change the will of Allah, to change our destiny, whether we like it or we dislike it.'





Of course, in Allah we trust.

Like many of you out there, I have come across all kinds of characters and circumstances, but at the end of the day, having trust in Allah, always bring about a good outcome. Bi-iznillah.

It's like this saying a dear friend sent to me:
"Life is like the ocean. It can be calm or still, and rough or rigid, but in the end, it is always beautiful.''

How can life not be beautiful, when it is He who gives us life? How can life be not beautiful when it is He who orchestrates, guides and cares for us?

Subhan is Allah.

Wish yáll a blessed first-ten-days of Zulhijjah.

-E-




Sunday, September 13, 2015

Humbled

Bismillah.

Inna lillah wa inna ilai hiraji'un.
Indeed, we are all shocked by His af'al at the Holy Grand Mosque of Makkah last Friday, 11 September 2015. It could have been worse. It's a great relief that the Holy Kaabah was not affected. Alhamdulillah.

May He forgive us, guide us and help those responsible in handling the aftermath. May we (especially the relevant authorities) heed the lessons (hikmah) from this incident.

Pray so that our friends, especially, are well under His protection there. Ameen.

Masjidil Haram, Makkah 11 September 2015
Pic: AFP/Getty Images

The picture on home turf is not looking great either. My thoughts are with those who have to work outdoor most of the time and those who have lost their jobs. 

May Allah improve our affairs and give us the strength to embrace fear - Face Everything And Rise. Ameen.

Kuala Lumpur 13 Sept 2015

p/s
On a more positive tone, I was pleasantly surprised to see via CCTV camera, the imam of my hometown mosque standing right in front of my Penang house, clearing the bushes, together with his jemaah. Good that we have got more young, energetic and dynamic imam these days. Allah bless everyone who is of benefit to others. Ameen.



Saturday, September 12, 2015

Hazy city -- enchanting pursuit

Bismillah.

Assalamualaikum,
Good morning folks.

It's extremely hazy in my city - KL. That pic below was taken this morning. Hope the air is clear in your country. But sometimes haze is good you know as said a French journalist Antoine Rivarol:



Of course it's nice to have a splash of enchantment to spice up a normal mundane daily activity. So what are you pursuing today?

Saturday is a full working day for me and my small team at Exa Publishing. We are quietly planting seeds for 2016. We don't give a damn if some people drop us from a project just because we are small and new. Oh well, at least we know the difference between an artwork and a bad manuscript. And we know that 'professionality' is NOT a word, professionalism is.

I was reading Donald Trump's book 'Think Like a Champion' last night. He quoted a very inspiring line by Victor Hugo: 
'There is one thing stronger 
than all the armies of the world, 
and that is 
an idea 
whose time has come.'

Absolutely love it!

Have a greaaat Saturday folks : )


Sunday, September 6, 2015

Disciplines for success #Faith

Bismillah.

Hi folks, wish y'all a greatttt Sunday.

It's my duty to share this with you simply because I am a good student. When my trainer asked me to share what I learned last Thursday and Friday, I just do it.

In case you didn't know what the System to Success is. 
It is a few simple disciplines,
practiced everyday.

At the outset of the training, we were asked to share the things we have done that we are really proud of. Of course it's not the time to be humble because: it is not humility to discount your own abilities. What about you, what have you done that you are really proud of? 

As for me, I am certainly grateful and I am loving this habit, this simple discipline of toning my writing muscle everyday.

I have, since Friday night, been putting together my notes and I have got 107 awesome-looking slides which I will share with my nearest. Will gradually share some here on this space. InshaAllah.

This blog is called Language of Faith. Faith indeed covers a wide scope. It is as wide as the heart-space may be extended. It is not just about one's religion. 

'Faith is to keep believing although nothing is happening' is one more definition of faith. Or perhaps we should say faith is to believe even if nothing seems to be happening, because surely there must be something happening for as long as we are not a statue, sitting down doing nothing. Even if we may seem to be doing nothing physically, the thoughts (or prayers) that we create in the mind sure are something.

So to recap, repeating good habits everyday is a system to success. And we gotta have faith even if nothing seems to be happening.

Glad I could share my writing habits with you. We shall see, where this small simple habit/discipline will take me 3 years from now. It's been 7 years already, Alhamdulillah.




In case you have never watched this before:





By the way, System to Failure is: repeating few errors everyday. Here is one example:
Exchanging meaningless/negative WhatsApp/Sms messages everyday.

Hu...hu...hu...
Peace y'all!
YaHu!


Saturday, September 5, 2015

Choose - Best version

Bismillah.



Yes! That's one of many takeaways from the course I attended yesterday. It's not about being a better version of oneself, it's about being: the BEST version of you. 

By the way, it's which is short for 'ít is' is not the same as its. Funny how some people are excited about creating a blog just to hit at me and they got the blog title so wrong, they got the two mixed up: it's and its. Yes, some people actually set up a blog just to bash at me LOL. I thank them for 'investing' their precious time on me. Makes me more grateful that this blog of mine, although insignificant, was set up with a better intention. Bi-iznillah

Oh well, we can't change everyone around us but we can choose who to spend time with. It's hilarious how the trainer said this the way he did: 'Some people and what they say is just not important, let them taaaaalk til they diiiiie.' He said this when we were discussing anger management. 

We have been asked to teach what we learned. To teach means to share and teaching is like double learning because you'll understand better when you teach.

I am so excited. It's 2.35 a.m. yet I am still fresh and energized composing a deck of my own notes from the course. I am pretty sure the good-looking trainer will be pleased when he sees my notes and how I intend to teach/share it. InshaAllah.



As I write this, it is still Friday in some parts of the world. May you have a great day. 
May you have a fab weekend : )

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Happy September

Bismillah.

Alhamdulillah wa shukrulillah.

I absolutely love this special feeling of being in the month of September. Sorry can't give any intellectual explanations for it because it is of course a matter of the heart...heh heh...

Though I must say each of the other months sounds pretty in their own way: Jen-new-wary, Fab-brew-wary, MARCH, Eh-prill, Maaay, Juune, Jool-ly, Auug-gust, Oak-tow-burr, No-vamp-burr and of course This-zem-burr.

[Hah hah sis Eza is rambling again tonight, I heard you say!]

But I think I've been quite consistent in putting effort to share something useful, if not here, then there must be something there on Al Falah TV Youtube channel, bi-iznillah.







Sometimes you'd wanna read, sometimes you'd wanna watch. We all appreciate variety sometimes. I say sometimes, because at other times we'd wanna stick to the familiar and the predictable.

At the end of the day, we will end up doing things which God has made it easier for us to do. And the heart is made inclined to that which it is inclined to.


Happppyyy Sap-tempt-burr!















p/s
Yesterday as we were about to reach KL after having spent a happy Merdeka weekend in Penang [plenty of shopping and eating], my 21 year old niece asked me a question with a very serious tone. But her question made me laugh out loud and my mother sort of replied on my behalf with her oft-repeated advice. In Malay, it goes like this: 'Kalau hati tidak ikhlas, jiwa tidak tenteram, hidup pasti keluh kesah.' Meaning: if one is not sincere, the soul will be restless and life will be unsettling. 

Allahu a'lam.
May Allah bless us with a sincere heart because only He could plant sincerity in a person's heart. May Allah continue to envelope us in His care, love and mercy. 

Ameen.