Sunday, March 13, 2011

Let's Make a Difference

I was reading a discussion about Japan’s earthquake and tsunami in a forum when I saw a post that sounded something like this;

I’m bothered by those who say that praying is the only thing that’ll work, or everything that’s happened has been described in the Bible! No, you can’t help the world by just praying. Even if you gather a church full of people, it’d be useless. Everyone who’s realistic would know that only money will help them. Not God, not praying, but money. Give money if possible, and help them if you’re near them, then you’ll make a difference, then the victims will be grateful.

Since the post decided to tackle the whole religion issue, I should’ve countered with a religious point of view as well, shouldn’t I?

وَإِذَا قِيلَ لَهُمۡ أَنفِقُواْ مِمَّا رَزَقَكُمُ ٱللَّهُ قَالَ ٱلَّذِينَ ڪَفَرُواْ لِلَّذِينَ ءَامَنُوٓاْ أَنُطۡعِمُ مَن لَّوۡ يَشَآءُ ٱللَّهُ أَطۡعَمَهُ ۥۤ إِنۡ أَنتُمۡ إِلَّا فِى ضَلَـٰلٍ۬ مُّبِينٍ۬

And when it is said to them, “Donate with what sustenance Allah has provided you,” Said the disbelievers to the believers, “Should we feed those whom if Allah, if He wills, would feed him (himself)?” Verily, you are clearly misled.
(Surah Yaseen (36) Verse 47)

I personally thought that if praying is the only thing we can do, then it’s fine to encourage others to do the same. At least we still have the victims in our minds. But I get where the poster is coming from; too many influential and rich people kept on preaching about their religion and the need to pray for the victims yet they didn’t do anything physically. They are able to donate a small amount of their fortune yet it didn’t seem like they did such a thing. They only kept on preaching about praying, praying, praying.

Then again they might donate privately, who knows what a person really do behind closed doors? Do you? I don’t. Do you know what your sister always did in front of her computer? Sometimes you do, sometimes you don’t. So don’t judge.

Too many people take the whole praying thing for granted, hoping for a miracle to suddenly appear in their lives.

Sometimes you just won’t get that miracle. Sometimes you will, but most of the time, you won’t. The only thing you can do is pray for a little guidance, a little blessing, and work your way upwards.

If you can get rich just by sitting in the mosque, praying all day long, then perhaps, if God’s willing, there’ll be a rich person who suddenly gives you his fortune.

But what’s the odd in that? Wouldn’t the fortune taste better, be cherished better, if you earned it by your own hands, by your own hard work? No doubt praying all day long is hard work as well, but if you only did that for a mere penny then you’re taking the whole praying thing out of context.

Same could be said to me I suppose. If I suddenly was cured from whatever it was instantly, won’t I be taking my recovery for granted? If I work hard to find my remedy, patiently waiting for the remedy to give its effect, wouldn’t I cherish the whole outcome better?

Praying, even if just a little, give us hope. Hope to move on, hope that everything will be okay, hope that we’ll be able to overcome all of this. Who else could we turn to when we need a little optimism, assurance and peace? What can you do when you don’t have that sense of optimism, assurance and peace? You’d probably think this life is useless and there’s no need for you to breathe in it anymore. Been there done that.

So pray, ask for your God’s blessing, but don’t forget to do your role as well. Pray that they’ll be able to adapt to the situations well, pray that they’ll have a peace of mind, the ability to move on, that everything will be easier from now on, but do your role too to ensure that they’re well-supported physically and mentally if you’re able.

And for us who can’t contribute money and support, we can only do one thing, and that is to pray that they’ll be alright.

Thoughts DO count. It makes you happy when people send you birthday messages, get-well-soon notes, and any other things, showing their love to you, don't you? Same with the victims, they’d be happy to hear that other people still care about them, have the best of thoughts for them, and it’s enough to make them able to stand up again.

Caring is so much better than ignoring anyways.

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