Jumaat, 28 November 2008

Friday - leader of all days, & Islam

Thank God it's Friday. Yes, we hear this every Friday although many people nearly vomit hearing the phrase. But still Friday is the day that everybody seems to thank God as the final working day of the week (at least for majority of Malaysians). And hello weekends!

For the Muslim, today is the leader of all other 6 days, the holy day, the day where Muslim men have to go to pray in the mosque. I don't actually want to mumble about what people already know about Fridays but it's just that today, it seems so many events actually happen revolving Muslims recently. Yoga & tomboy fatwa, the execution of Bali bombers, rape, sodomy and of course, the attack on Taj Mahal Hotel in India yesterday that is blamed on the so-called Muslim militants. Pls be clear though I'm trying to act like a good & knowledgeable Muslim while I admit that I'm just another ignorant Muslim who got confused with with all these issues.

Maybe that is the problem, most of Muslims are dumb and ignorant Muslims, that's what the "wise" Muslims say. We are getting further from Quran and Sunnah (tradition of the Prophet). Nobody hold to Islam's true teachings. That's why many crimes are committed by the Malay Muslims be it corruption, murder, rape or at least khalwat. The scholars' solution is simple, go back to the true teachings of the Quran. That is the real question. What is the true teachings of the Quran if most Muslim can't even barely understand what Al-Fatihah (the 1st Quranic chapter) means? I wonder that in Malaysia, Quranic class simply means tajwid class. A class that equip Malaysians to be champions in tilawah competitions but knows nothing, let alone understand, the real message of the Quran. The fact that majority of Muslims, including the Arabs, don't really understand Quranic Arabic as an ancient language doesn't really help.

Don't get me wrong, tajwid class is okay and by all means should be continued. My question is, why stop there? Why I never heard of Quranic class that discuss it's messages page by page, surah by surah? The only thing religious talks/ceramahs that I ever attended are the one that used some other kitabs (books) written by ustaz this or ustaz that as if it is the real Islamic holy book. In a class, the main reading should be the textbook whereas the rest of books are supplementary readings. Thus, Muslims' textbook should be the Quran....with the rest including the hadiths as supplementary readings to understand its meaning. But in reality the Quran itself in confined to the cabinet or shelf until somebody wants to improve his/her tajwid and the verses mainly used to support whatever points a preacher wants to give. Ever wonder why deviant teachers can easily manipulate the Quran?

Yes it's true that we, average Muslims who can't speak Arabic and have almost no knowledge in Quranic science, must rely on the ulama who are scholars of Quran. There is no way we can understand it by ourselves and I'm not a supporter of self-interpretation like Muslim liberalists. But why no such scholars really want to conduct systematic teachings of Quranic interpretation and messages whether in the mosques or religious classes, just like they teach tajwid, is beyond my comprehension. Why our version of Islam is solely based on what certain ulama says who come out with many versions or some books written by PhD scholars (who may be sincere, deviant or just want to make some money) and not just use these books as supplementaries?

So, before we got the headache on many issues like why many Muslims commit crimes, why so many deviant teachings, is Taliban right or wrong, are the Bali trio martyrs or sinners, is yoga halal or haram etc, why don't we think how close are the Muslims with Quran, how many of us even understand the meanings of Al-Fatihah that we always recite like a parrot on daily basis. Yes, we have tafsir, but you'll find argument that reading tafsir without guidance will lead you to the wrong path (???). I'm a father and I really want my children to be good Muslims by understanding Islam through Quran and not just some other book like "Islam for Dummies" (or its alike) like what I've done. I don't say I don't appreciate what I've learned about my religion or I'm not thankful to my religious teachers, it's just that I don't see how I'm connected to the Holy Book.

Lastly about the hadiths, I don't really touch it here but I do agree that the hadiths are neccessary to further describe Quran. For me Quran and hadiths must be studied together instead of independently so that Muslims can undertand the relation between Quran and hadiths. And from what I know hadiths are just supplementary of Quran and if there is contradiction, Quran shall prevail.

PS: I think I wrote longer than what I'm actually trying to say.

Regards and happy weekends,
Ordinary Muslim with little knowledge.

Isnin, 3 November 2008


Salam to whom it may concern,
This is not actually my first blog I've ever written, but certainly this is my first blog in blogger.com, written on the sleepiest Monday of the year. In the sleepy afternoon after lunch, I have no idea actually what to write other than expressing what I see, read and hear today.

Well, to begin with, in my way from parking lot to the office, it seems that I started my day with The Sun's frontpage news that Najib won uncontested. Big deal... everybody knows it's hard to contest as an UMNO president with the funny quota imposed, let alone win it. Tun M's favourite candidate, Ku Li, has been a victim to a mechanism Tun M personally devised. Nevertherless, the outcome is no surprise at all considering the current political climates. Yes, I believe he will be a PM as he is the sole contestant of UMNO's presidency and there is no way PR can take over the federal government (if they can, they have done it already immediately after the GE, no need to give a ridiculous target date). In fact, Anwar blown his only chance when Pak Lah refused to give up the premiership and the oil price were escalating. Well, congratz in advance Najib! You only have Raja Petra and Bala to worry about...hopefully...

Turn to next pages, yes, in other side of the world, the Americans are electing their president This 4th Nov. Really? No actually. There is an article in the paper that says the American voters actually are voting to choose 538 electors for electoral colleges. The electors in turn will vote to choose their president and VP this Dec 15 when they meet up in Washington, DC. This explains why Al Gore lose the election in 2000 despite he got more votes than Bush. Actually the mechanism is more complex than what I wrote here but I'm too lazy to give details. Just google it la! My point is, even the "leader of democracy" has a democratic system as funny as, maybe funnier than, our own system.

I arrived in the office, 5 minutes late, only to see a bunch of sleepy people. Log on to YAM and facebook only to read ppl's complaints about being sleepy and lazy today. Some ppl are on medical leave too. Nothing else happen, even the computer server seems to have Monday blues.

Forget politics and office, on the personal side, now that my body is ballooning thanks to open houses, I have to forcibly volunteer to enrol as a gym member by my wife's request...sigh. Yes, I don't actually exercise manually and thank God I'm still healthy. Of course, I can't guarantee I will stay that way since my fat and cholestrol level may go out of control. So, what to do, dah sayang bini, just do it lah...