On our Anniversary: Our Greatest Assets: Inspire Others Everywhere for Allah Azza Wa Jala


17 years ago, Friday the 27th,at Majlis Islam Sarawak, Miri @about 9:30 am, witnessed by Ustaz Najib, Fauzi & Abdul Khalek, we were solemnized by Sheikhul Hussein as Husband and Wife with RM80 dowry. This is the happiest day in my life, after went through many episodes of love stories with my secret lover adorable Nana. It was quite a mixed feeling, though, casting another 'achievement' in the milestone without my beloved parents witnessing the 'lafaz nikah' with one blast. I am pretty sure, it will be very different if they were around. I remember, 6 months before the D-day, when Nana was with Bank Islam in Kuala Lumpur, I dared myself to release my intention with Nana's mom on Saturday in their house and said "...I would like to marry Nana...and, once we get married, I wanted her to resign from the Bank". Just like the legendary Hang Tuah, braving himself against the Sultan of Malacca's traitor, with his 'kris' at the frontline of the battle, then I was with my words, guts and RM 4000. Now, after 17 years had past and 17 years had been together, manuvering our journey through bumby road; beautiful scenaries; confronted with hurricane; crossed successfully various obstacles; breathing fresh memories and Alhamdullillah, praise only be upon the Al-Mighty Allah swt, for giving us 'Afi: Muhammad Afiq: Muhammad Asri: Muhammad Aiman & our only daughter Afiqah - our greatest assets. To them, this is our message:
Ready or not, someday it will come to an end. There will be no sunrises, no minutes, hours or days. All the things you collected, whether treasured or forgotten, will pass to someone else.Your wealth, fame and temporal power will shrivel to irrelevance.
It will not matter what you owned or what you were owed.Your grudges, resentments, frustrations, and jealousies will finally disappear. So, to your hopes, ambitions, plan and to-do list will expire
The win and losses that once seemed so important will fade away.It won’t matter where you come from, or on what side of tracks you lived, at the end.It won’t matter whether you were beautiful or brilliantEven your gender and skin colour will be irrelevant.
So what will matter? How will the value of your days be measured?
What will matter is not what you bought, but what you built; not what you got, but what you gave
What will matter is not your success, but your significance
What will matter is not what you learned, but what you taught
What matter is every act of integrity, compassion, courage or sacrifice that enriched, empowered, or encouraged others to emulate your example
What will matter is not your competence, but your character
What will matter are not how many people that you knew, but how many feel a lasting loss when you’re gone
What will matter are not your memories, but the memories that live in those who loved you
What will matter is how long you will be remembered, by whom and for whatLiving a life that matters doesn’t happen by accident. It’s not a matter of circumstance but of choice.

Sacrification - the Preparation for life thereafter


Eidul Adha or Hari Raya Korban or Hari Raya Haji is celebrated by all Muslims around the globe on the 10th of Dzulhijjah Hijr of the Muslim calendar or a day before Wukuf – literally means stand still – the day of resurrection of any individual Muslim performing Hajj in the Holy land of Arafah; the starting point of the Hajj and the climax of Muslims’ life in this temporary world. During these 3 days of Tashrik, Muslims were encouraged to make sacrifice as what had been asked to Prophet Ibrahim as by Allah swt more than 2000 years ago. This story was recorded in the Al-Quran for us to read, ponder and to most extend, practice.

We celebrated this year Eidul Adha at Rumah Sarawak, El-Haiyu El Ashar, Cairo with all the Sarawakian and other ElAzhar students. Alhamdullillah, we sacrificed two Egyptian Khibashs; Rumah Sarawak’s neighbor received 2 camels from the Sultan of Pahang and Rumah Kedah was the grand with 3 local cows and 4 Egyptian Khibashs. Sincere efforts and team spirit rendered and demonstrated by all the students and the officials had made all the sacrifices smooth and successful. By 12:30 pm we had our lunch of Kedah cuisine prepared mainly by the Rumah Kedah team.

To cut the long story short, the lessons that we learnt from the Eidul Adha are, there is no short cut in life. We have to work hard to achieve our dream - to make it come through for Allah swt.

The Journey of The Lifetime


The Hajj - a pilgrimage to Makkah – the journey of the lifetime, is the largest annual pilgrimage in the world, and is the fifth pillar of Islam, an obligation that must be fullfilled at least once in their lifetime by every able-bodied Muslim who is financially strong, healthy and safe. The Hajj is a demonstration of the solidarity of the Muslim people, and their submission to Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala.The pilgrimage occurs from the 8th to 12th day of Dhu al-Hijjah, the 12th month of the Islamic Hijri calendar. In summary, the Hajj is associated with the life of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) from the 7th century, but the ritual of pilgrimage to Makkah is considered by Muslims to stretch back thousands of years to the time of the Prophet Ibrahim alaihisalam (as) . Pilgrims join processions of hundreds of thousands of people, who simultaneously converge on Makkah for the week of the Hajj, and perform a series of rituals. Tawaf, each person walks counter-clockwise seven times around the Kaabah; kisses the Hajr el- Aswad in the corner of the Kaabah. Subsequently, they perform Sa’i, which is runs back and forth between the hills of Al-Safa and Al-Marwah; drinks from the Zamzam Well; goes to the plains of Mount Arafat to stand in vigil. They layer move to Mina via Mudzalifah and throws stones in a ritual stoning of the Devil at the three jamraats. The pilgrims then shave their heads, perform a ritual of animal sacrifice, and celebrate the three-day global festival of Eid al-Adha.
The above steps were demonstrated by the last but greatest Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) in 632AD. He led his followers from Madinah to Makkah, which was the first Hajj performed by Muslims alone, and the only Hajj ever performed by Rasullullah Sallallahu alahai hi Wassalam. He cleansed the Kaabah, removed all of the idols, and re-ordained the building as the house of the almighty Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala (swt). It was from this point that the Hajj became one of the Five Pillars of Islam. On the ninth of Dhu al-Hijjah, the pilgrims leave for Wukuf at Arafat, where they stand in contemplative vigil, near a hill from which Prophet Muhammad saw gave his last sermon Khutbah Wida’. The Wukuf is the highlight or the climax of the lifetime journey - Hajj. Pilgrims must spend the afternoon within a defined area on the plain of Arafat until after sunset. Otherwise, their pilgrimage is invalid. No specific rituals or prayers are required during the stay at Arafat, although many pilgrims spend time praying, and thinking about the course of their lives. As soon as the sunsets, the pilgrims leave Arafat for Muzdalifah, an area between Arafat and Mina, where they gather pebbles for the next day's ritual of the stoning of the Devil (Shaitan). Many pilgrims spend the night sleeping on the ground or back in their tents at Muzdalifah before returning to Mina. It is now the 10th of the month, the day of Eid ul-Adha.
At Mina the pilgrims perform Ramy al-Jamarat, throwing stones to signify their defiance of the Devil. This symbolizes the trials experienced by Prophet Ibraham a.s. while he decided whether to sacrifice his son as demanded by Allah. The Devil challenged him three times, which he refused. Each pillar marks the location of one of these refusals. On the first occasion when Ramy al-Jamarat is performed, pilgrims stone the largest pillar known as Jamrat'al-Aqabah.On the second occasion, the other pillars Jamraat Ula and Jamraat Wusta are stoned..The stoning consists of throwing seven pebbles
On the afternoon of the 11th and again the following day the pilgrims must again throw seven pebbles at each of the three Jamarat in Mina. Pilgrims must spent at least 6 hours at Mina for at least two days. They could leave Mina for Makkah before sunset on the 12th. However, it is better for them to stay on and perform the stoning ritual on the 13th before returning to Makkah.
After the Stoning of the Devil; the pilgrims shave their hair (for men) or at least three pieces of hairs; perform animal sacrifices to symbolize the almighty Allah swt having mercy on Prophet Ibraham a.s. and replacing his son with a ram, which Prophet Ibraham a.s. then sacrificed. Traditionally the pilgrims slaughtered the animal themselves, or oversaw the slaughtering.
Subsequently, the pilgrims travel back to Makkah, which is just five kilometers away, re-visit the Masjid al-Haram to perform Tawaf al-Ifadah, which symbolises being in a hurry to respond to the almighty Allah swt and show love for Him, an obligatory part of the Hajj. However, they could perform the Tawaf al-Ifadah after the 13th day of Dhul Hijjah. The night of the 10th is spent back at Mina. Finally, before leaving Makkah, pilgrims perform a farewell Tawaf called the Tawaf al-Wada. They are encourage to make supplication before the almighty Allah swt at Multazam, expecially on another opportunities to return back to the holiest place on earth - the Masjid el-Haram.

11th December - A Pit Stop of My Journey


Beginning today I will no longer worry about yesterday: It is in the past and the past never change: Only I can change by choosing to do so: Beginning today I will no longer worry about tomorrow: Tomorrow will always be there, waiting for me to make the best of it: But I cannot make the most of tomorrow without first making the most of today: Beginning today I will see in the mirror and I will see the person worthy of my respect and admiration. This capable person looking back at me is someone I enjoy spending with and someone I would like to get to know better: Beginning today I will cherish each moment of my life: I value the gift bestowed upon me in this world and I will unselfishly share this gift with others:Beginning today I will take a moment to step off the beaten path and to revel in the mysterious that I encounter. I will face challenges with courage and determination. I will overcome what barriers there maybe which hinder my quest for growth and self-improvement.
Beginning today I will take life one day at a time, one step at time: Discouragement will not be allowed to taint my positive self image, my desire to succeed or my capacity to love: Beginning today I walk with renewed faith in human kindness: Regardless of what has gone before. I believe there is hope for a brighter and better future: Beginning today I will open my mind and my heart. I will welcome new experiences: I will meet new people. I will not expect perfection from myself nor anyone else: Perfection does not exist in an imperfect world. But I will applaud the attempt to human foibles: Beginning today I will learn something new: I will try something different: I will savor all the various flavors life has to offer: I will change what I can and the rest I will let go: I will strive to become the best me I can possibly be. Alhamdullillah, without you the AL-Mighty Allah Rabbul Jalil, who am I today. Thanks for Your Blessing and Everythings.