Thursday, August 23, 2012

1433: Responsibilities and Self-reflection

When I attended my Idulfitri prayers and listening to the Khutba (sermon), I remember the khatib (imam) told us about charity (alms) or what the Muslim called ‘Zakat’. He said “there’s no point of performing our alms if we aren’t able to pray”, and learn the true meaning of being contented and peaceful at the right state of mind. We often think that we only perform zakat only during Idulfitri. Many years ago, I was enlightened by a dear friend who I see her as a soul sister who told me that zakat has many forms. So, I start performing my zakat regularly even in my businesses, I put 5-10% and give it back to the poor. I used to put RM1 Ringgit into the donation box but later few years I start to put more without being calculative about it.

But then this very 1st Syawal of 1433, it hit my head again to understand the meaning behind helping others. Immediately I start to question myself, why did I help strangers yet I barely pay attention to my own relatives who lost their husband or wife or children. Do they have enough to survive? So I immediately go and talk to them, sending my doa and prayers, removing my own bitterness and sadness aside and pay attention to them. I tried to listen to them and try to be there even if it’s just for few minutes. I felt closer. Even Yong Zetty, my cousin called me and sent my encouraging greetings to keep me motivated. She was very helpful. That's all I need.

Being Grateful & Togetherness

While praising our belief, I see many ‘religious’ individual peculiarly rant their anger, their temper-tantrum and whine over something so small to some point take other people’s self-esteem away by demoralizing, harassing, condemning  and blindly judge everyone around them. They forget to compare to those who are more unfortunate. It’s no point if you check into foursquare in churches, temples and mosques but you swear others. It doesn’t reflect you’re better than those who don’t.

An insightful illustration by the talented Ila Fox

I am a strong believer in love and affection, even if deep inside I’m still ‘inattentive’ to relationship; I never neglected my relationship with God, my family relatives and my friends around me despite how imperfect I am. I am so grateful that they are the source of my strength and I will always pray for their well being and prosperity.

When it comes to togetherness, I never wanted to feel like an outcast. Usually I initiate and take a step to bring people together if I don’t receive one. In the family, I will always be the goofy one tried to make a fool out of myself to break tension and stress among my siblings. If they had a quarrel, I will be there to break out any argument or fight. At least.

I always believe that we should be able to migrate to become wiser and mature, not childish when we grow old who’s easily offended and insecure of small things in life. Having said, it’s within our very nature to crave for acceptance. To be accept by family members, to be accept by our friends, to be accepted by our lovers and everyone around us. We tried to hard so that others would acknowledge us, yet when we don't get it, we become demoralize by our very own actions. So, what's the point of seeking for one's acceptance if you aren't able to accept yourself first? Our biggest enemy has always been greed. When you’re not satisfied and seek for more. More attention, more wealth. That’s when we became mentally and emotionally unstable because we can never satisfied. I advise others to get over our gluttony. I encourage people not to live a life in hatred and vengeance. If you're unable to clear your mind and seek serenity at a certain age, you will constantly fall and fail miserably. 


So remember, when you do good things in life, never ever expect you’ll be rewarded good things in return. Bring yourself closer to humility and seek serenity. Don’t victimize yourself by saying you have bad karma if luck is not by your side. God chose us to be stronger so that’s why we are given many obstacles so that we will be able to endure it and understand the path we had chosen. And lastly, forgive sincerely and forget. Don't put vengeance in you because it will lead you to a become a darker person. Find a closure, move on to a better, beautiful path of life, take control of your life and take a glimpse back to reflect yourself so that who you are yesterday, made you become a better person today and tomorrow. InsyaAllah.

In life, we need to achieve a good balance. Doesn't mean being good, we are not open to doing bad things. Always make room for mistakes so that you learn. Life is always about learning. There's no such logic by claiming yourself with 'Been there, done that' but you're not humble enough to empty back your glass over and over again. That's why we are born imperfect. Because none of us are truly imperfect. 

Accept it, embrace it and inspire from it.