Friday, March 11, 2011

My Journey to Islam

(This is the continuation from this post.)

(That’s me in the picture :P)

First of all, my deepest condolences to the people of Japan. I have a friend who barely survived the earthquake in Christchurch, New Zealand, and now to see tons of other people experiencing the same situation as she did, and later was shocked by the tsunami broke my heart a little. I hope everyone will be okay and can overcome the aftereffects.

This is just a sign. A sign before the real thing – the end of the world – that will really occur sooner or later. Are you ready for that? Have you prepared for the day of Judgment? Do you think all your good deeds will suffice for that promised day?

I admit that I don’t think my good deeds are enough to guarantee my admission to heaven. But I’m mentally prepared for everything to come, for the world to end tomorrow, for my life to finally halt any time soon.

I’m not this way years ago. I wanted the world to end, but I’m afraid I’ll go to hell.

It wasn’t until much later that I really thought;

What am I?

Why am I in this world again?

This world is so well-crafted and well-thought out, now that I look at it properly.

The universe, the life recycle, the connections between the creatures of the earth, the ecosystem, all of it are just extremely precise and ingenious.

Do I, an insignificant little creature, deserve to live in such a fascinating world?

I’m not going to be here forever, am I?

Where will I be next?

Perhaps I’ll be reincarnated as someone else. Perhaps I’ll be gone with the wind, or into another world I don’t know. Or forever forgotten.

But if I’ll be reincarnated as someone else;

It’ll be tiring to repeat the same troublesome life over and over again. And what good will it bring to me? What’s the point of life, then?

If I’ll be going to another world I don’t know;

I have nothing to say except, I wonder what kind of world that would be?

If I’ll be forever forgotten;

What a joke this life would be if I only spend a lifetime on Earth as a nobody and then die and that’s the end of me.

In a systematic world as this, where the formation of the universe was carefully thought out – to make sure there wouldn’t be any potential accidents like you’ll see on the street – is surreal. Imagine what will happen if things go wrong and suddenly the sun started to collapse and we’ll burn from the extreme heat.

Imagine how it would be if the rain suddenly just wouldn’t fall down, and the clouds keep on floating up there, graying up the sky. And the plants wouldn’t release oxygen. And the world would be filled with carbon dioxide. What a scary – and messed up – world would it be, wouldn’t it?

I was there, noticing that the people on TV are real.

The world in my head isn’t.

The world in front of my eyes is.

And I’m just as real as those on TV.

And the TV is real.

And the earth is currently spinning.

And underneath these soils, there are layers of crusts of the earth.

And how up there, above the atmosphere, there are seven skies.

ٱللَّهُ ٱلَّذِى خَلَقَ سَبۡعَ سَمَـٰوَٲتٍ۬ وَمِنَ ٱلۡأَرۡضِ مِثۡلَهُنَّ يَتَنَزَّلُ ٱلۡأَمۡرُ بَيۡنَہُنَّ لِتَعۡلَمُوٓاْ أَنَّ ٱللَّهَ عَلَىٰ كُلِّ شَىۡءٍ۬ قَدِيرٌ۬ وَأَنَّ ٱللَّهَ قَدۡ أَحَاطَ بِكُلِّ شَىۡءٍ عِلۡمَۢا

It is Allah who created seven skies and of the earth, just like them (seven layers). Allah’s command is send down between them, so that you would know that Allah is able to do everything, and that Allah encompasses everything in knowledge.
(Surah Al-6alaq (65) Verse 12)

And I’m just this little insignificant thing breathing in this highly systematic world.

Who am I? It felt as if I didn’t have an identity. I was just another face, roaming the earth, waiting to die.

But what a meaningless death would it be if I perish as one of those without an identity. What a waste of space, this existence of mine.

Some people didn’t choose to die without an identity.

I, on the other hand, am still very much alive. I’m still breathing. I can still pick my choice.

I used to wonder, what’s the purpose of creating babies if they’re going to die minutes later? It doesn’t seem to add up with how the world works.

However then, I realized that even the smallest things played a huge part in their lives. The death of a baby, the life of a baby, the death of a cat, the life of a bird, and if their lives are connected to you, you’re going to be affected.

Everything happens for a reason. A guy would forever be such a cold person if he didn’t have a child to take care of. A guy would forever be careless if he didn’t hit his head. But a guy could forever be a cold person if he didn’t have a child to take care too, though.

It all depends on you, but everything’s there for our own good. It’s all up to us on how we take it and decided to decipher it.

It’ll be a good thing if we think of it as a blessing. It’ll be a bad thing if we think of it as a nuisance.

If that’s true, then I can’t imagine my existence as something completely meaningless.

Everything in this world seems to have a purpose. From the mechanism of plants to the ecosystem, the way how everything is synergy with each other.

Okay now I’m repeating myself. But you get the point.

Everything is in-synch so that we can live comfortably. Everything remains in-synch, but due to human’s stupidity, things begin to take a turn for the worse. It’s March and it’s still snowing at some part of the world! The earthquakes! The tsunamis! The hurricanes!

The creator of the world could have fixed everything. But with how the systems of the Earth goes, it is inevitable that that could happen, isn’t it? Snow falling down at random places, is that a miracle? Science could probably answer that. Science could answer nearly everything. So to say that it’s a coincidence, a miracle, is a bit of a stretch, don’t you think? What about the earthquake, is it an inevitable thing too?

أَلَمۡ نَجۡعَلِ ٱلۡأَرۡضَ مِهَـٰدً۬ا

Didn’t we make the earth as expanse?

وَٱلۡجِبَالَ أَوۡتَادً۬ا

And the mountains as pegs?
(Surah An-Naba (78) Verse 6-7)

وَجَعَلۡنَا فِى ٱلۡأَرۡضِ رَوَٲسِىَ أَن تَمِيدَ بِهِمۡ وَجَعَلۡنَا فِيہَا فِجَاجً۬ا سُبُلاً۬ لَّعَلَّهُمۡ يَہۡتَدُونَ

And we’ve made on the earth firm mountains (so that) if it were to shake, (it'll be) with them, and we’ve made for them passages for paths, so that they’ll be guided.
(Al-Anbiya2 (21) Verse 31)

Admittedly we don’t have as many mountains as we once do ages ago, do we?

وَمَآ أَصَـٰبَڪُم مِّن مُّصِيبَةٍ۬ فَبِمَا كَسَبَتۡ أَيۡدِيكُمۡ وَيَعۡفُواْ عَن كَثِيرٍ

Whatever misfortune that happens to you, it is because of what you’ve earned by your hands. But He forgives much.

وَمَآ أَنتُم بِمُعۡجِزِينَ فِى ٱلۡأَرۡضِۖ وَمَا لَكُم مِّن دُونِ ٱللَّهِ مِن وَلِىٍّ۬ وَلَا نَصِيرٍ۬

And you can’t escape in this world, and you don’t have any guardian or helper besides Allah.

وَمِنۡ ءَايَـٰتِهِ ٱلۡجَوَارِ فِى ٱلۡبَحۡرِ كَٱلۡأَعۡلَـٰمِ

And among his signs are the ships in the sea, like flags.

إِن يَشَأۡ يُسۡكِنِ ٱلرِّيحَ فَيَظۡلَلۡنَ رَوَاكِدَ عَلَىٰ ظَهۡرِهِۦۤۚ إِنَّ فِى ذَٲلِكَ لَأَيَـٰتٍ۬ لِّكُلِّ صَبَّارٍ۬ شَكُورٍ

If He wills, He can halt the wind, and they’ll be motionless on the back (of the ocean), verily, in this are signs for those who preserver and grateful.

أَوۡ يُوبِقۡهُنَّ بِمَا كَسَبُواْ وَيَعۡفُ عَن كَثِيرٍ۬

Or he can perish them with what (evil) they’ve earned, but He forgives a lot.
(Surah Al-Shoora (42) Verse 30 – 34)

We deserve everything that landed on our way. There is a reason for that, there is a reason for everything in this world.

So to suddenly create me, and send me down to Earth, couldn’t just be a meaningless act. I have a purpose. Maybe my purpose in life is to help an elderly cross the street, but that’s still a purpose, nonetheless. Perhaps that’ll change the elderly’s life. Maybe it won’t. But at least I’ve done my role.

I’ll be honest and say that I haven’t found my role. But for now, I’m just enjoying everything. Discovering, studying, and these verses are especially true;

يَـٰٓأَيُّہَا ٱلنَّاسُ ٱعۡبُدُواْ رَبَّكُمُ ٱلَّذِى خَلَقَكُمۡ وَٱلَّذِينَ مِن قَبۡلِكُمۡ لَعَلَّكُمۡ تَتَّقُونَ

Oh people, worship your lord who created you and those before you, so that you’ll be pious.

ٱلَّذِى جَعَلَ لَكُمُ ٱلۡأَرۡضَ فِرَٲشً۬ا وَٱلسَّمَآءَ بِنَآءً۬ وَأَنزَلَ مِنَ ٱلسَّمَآءِ مَآءً۬ فَأَخۡرَجَ بِهِۦ مِنَ ٱلثَّمَرَٲتِ رِزۡقً۬ا لَّكُمۡۖ فَلَا تَجۡعَلُواْ لِلَّهِ أَندَادً۬ا وَأَنتُمۡ تَعۡلَمُونَ

The one who made for you the earth as the bed, and the sky as the canopy, and sent down from the sky, water, and brought out from them fruits as provision for you, so don’t make anything as Allah's equal while knowing that (is not true).

وَإِن ڪُنتُمۡ فِى رَيۡبٍ۬ مِّمَّا نَزَّلۡنَا عَلَىٰ عَبۡدِنَا فَأۡتُواْ بِسُورَةٍ۬ مِّن مِّثۡلِهِۦ وَٱدۡعُواْ شُهَدَآءَكُم مِّن دُونِ ٱللَّهِ إِن كُنتُمۡ صَـٰدِقِينَ

And if you’re in doubt with what we’ve sent down on our servant (Muhammad) then produce a Surah (chapter) exactly like this, and call your witnesses besides Allah, if you're truthful.

فَإِن لَّمۡ تَفۡعَلُواْ وَلَن تَفۡعَلُواْ فَٱتَّقُواْ ٱلنَّارَ ٱلَّتِى وَقُودُهَا ٱلنَّاسُ وَٱلۡحِجَارَةُۖ أُعِدَّتۡ لِلۡكَـٰفِرِينَ

But if you can’t and can never do it then fear the fire, its fuel is of humans and stones, prepared for the disbelievers.
(Surah Al-Baqarah (2) Verses 21 – 24)

People could do that if they want, and there are people who’ll try to defend their logic by denying the words of God, to the point of calling us names, giving their evidences, but there are reasons why people don’t take them seriously, right? I’ve read a lot of theories denying the Quran and Islam, but there are a lot of those, amongst themselves, who are Anti-Islam themselves, who don’t support those people's theories either.

It doesn’t happen to just the Muslims and Anti-Islam. Sometimes, you’ll want to send your point across, engaged in a huge debate, but they just won’t listen, no matter how right you are.

وَمَثَلُ ٱلَّذِينَ ڪَفَرُواْ كَمَثَلِ ٱلَّذِى يَنۡعِقُ بِمَا لَا يَسۡمَعُ إِلَّا دُعَآءً۬ وَنِدَآءً۬ۚ صُمُّۢ بُكۡمٌ عُمۡىٌ۬ فَهُمۡ لَا يَعۡقِلُونَ

And an example is like those who disbelieve, like him who shouts (like a goat-herd) but they listen to nothing except calls and cries. Deaf, dumb and blind, they have no wisdom.
(Surah Al-Baqarah (1) Verse 171)

وَإِن تَدۡعُوهُمۡ إِلَى ٱلۡهُدَىٰ لَا يَسۡمَعُواْۖ وَتَرَٮٰهُمۡ يَنظُرُونَ إِلَيۡكَ وَهُمۡ لَا يُبۡصِرُونَ

And if you call him toward the straight path, they won’t listen. And you saw them looking at you, but they see not.
(Al-A3raf (7) Verse 198)

That verse rings true for so many people, doesn’t it? You tried to justify your actions by facts, but if he is adamant that you’re tricking him, his eyes will be clouded with nothing but suspicious, and nothing could change his mind once he truly believed what he thought.

Truthfully, if I wasn’t born as a Muslim, I would probably study the religion that I was in with more depth like I did with Islam. If I was an Atheist, I would probably approach a religion that suits me best.

As of now, I really think that Islam suits me best. The sense of humbleness in everything; be it in clothing, action, conversation, relationship between men and women. The overall ‘restriction’ in Islam that people often frowned and condemned upon, in my opinion, definitely serves for the better mankind. And that is my honest opinion.

Humble in clothing; you won’t attract unnecessary attraction and envy.

Humble in action and conversation; a trivial thing would remain just that – trivial.

Humble in relationship; and you might even escape from committing a murder (i.e. killing babies).

I have fun studying Islam. I find it miraculous how true the words really are. I have fun watching people taking the essence of the religion in the wrong way. I did not have fun watching people taking the wrong impression of Islam from those who portrayed the religion wrongly though.

But that’s the glory of it all. Wherever you go, you’ll always find trouble. There is always someone, that someone, who’s set to ruin your life. Be it ruining your life by snoring so that you can’t sleep, or blasting loud music at midnight so that your baby can’t stay calm, but still, he is someone.

Then again, that’s your trial.

If everyone could enter Janna (Heaven), wouldn’t Janna have the same fate as the Earth? What if Janna consist of people of good and bad, wouldn’t there be a riot like there is right now on the Earth?

People, with their flawed appearance.

People, with their flawed personalities.

People, the imperfect perfection.

Why are we born as a human, I used to wonder? Well, if Allah wanted you to be perfect, He’ll create you as an angel ages ago. If He wanted to make you a plant, you’re a plant.

But He wants us to become an imperfect human, a human that could prove the devil wrong, as the devil said in these verses;

وَلَقَدۡ خَلَقۡنَـٰڪُمۡ ثُمَّ صَوَّرۡنَـٰكُمۡ ثُمَّ قُلۡنَا لِلۡمَلَـٰٓٮِٕكَةِ ٱسۡجُدُواْ لِأَدَمَ فَسَجَدُوٓاْ إِلَّآ إِبۡلِيسَ لَمۡ يَكُن مِّنَ ٱلسَّـٰجِدِينَ

We’ve created you, then we gave you shape, then we told the Angels to prostrate to Adam, so they (the Angels) prostrated except for Iblis (devil), he refused to prostrate.

قَالَ مَا مَنَعَكَ أَلَّا تَسۡجُدَ إِذۡ أَمَرۡتُكَۖ قَالَ أَنَا۟ خَيۡرٌ۬ مِّنۡهُ خَلَقۡتَنِى مِن نَّارٍ۬ وَخَلَقۡتَهُ ۥ مِن طِينٍ۬

Said (Allah): What prevents you from prostrating when I’ve commanded you? Said (Iblis): I’m better than him. You’ve created me from fire, and you’ve created him from clay.

قَالَ فَٱهۡبِطۡ مِنۡہَا فَمَا يَكُونُ لَكَ أَن تَتَكَبَّرَ فِيہَا فَٱخۡرُجۡ إِنَّكَ مِنَ ٱلصَّـٰغِرِينَ

Said (Allah): Get down from there (heaven), it’s not for you to be arrogant in it. Get out, you are among the lowest.

قَالَ أَنظِرۡنِىٓ إِلَىٰ يَوۡمِ يُبۡعَثُونَ

Said (Iblis): Reprieve me until the day of resurrection.

قَالَ إِنَّكَ مِنَ ٱلۡمُنظَرِينَ

Said (Allah): You are among those who reprieved.

قَالَ فَبِمَآ أَغۡوَيۡتَنِى لَأَقۡعُدَنَّ لَهُمۡ صِرَٲطَكَ ٱلۡمُسۡتَقِيمَ

Said (Iblis): Then because you’ve sent me astray, I will sit in wait for them on your straight path.

ثُمَّ لَأَتِيَنَّهُم مِّنۢ بَيۡنِ أَيۡدِيہِمۡ وَمِنۡ خَلۡفِهِمۡ وَعَنۡ أَيۡمَـٰنِہِمۡ وَعَن شَمَآٮِٕلِهِمۡۖ وَلَا تَجِدُ أَكۡثَرَهُمۡ شَـٰكِرِينَ

Then I will assault them from in front of them and from behind them, from their right and from their left, and you won’t find lots of them being grateful (to you).

قَالَ ٱخۡرُجۡ مِنۡہَا مَذۡءُومً۬ا مَّدۡحُورً۬اۖ لَّمَن تَبِعَكَ مِنۡہُمۡ لَأَمۡلَأَنَّ جَهَنَّمَ مِنكُمۡ أَجۡمَعِينَ

Said (Allah): Get out from here (heaven), disgraced and expelled. If they follow you, I will fill the Hell with the lot of you.
(Surah Al-A3raf (11) Verse 1 – 18)

We humans are special. We are the imperfect creations, yet the angels themselves, who are perfect, bowed to us.

Flawed creation, but we can still achieve such perfection to Allah. To find such a person who’s achieved that kind of perfection is hard, and that is why, I’ve come to understand, that the only people who qualify of Janna are people such as them.

I admit I’m still learning. Perhaps what I’m preaching is actually false. But this is what I believe. And if what I believe will bring me closer to Allah, will make me a better human, then I’m going to stick to it.

People think that those who qualify for Janna are those who do everything that you’re required to do.

I believe that it’ll take a bit more effort than that.

What’s the use of never missing a prayer if you didn’t do your work, consequently belittling your fellow co-workers, consequently letting everyone down, consequently making everyone hate you?

You might be the most religious person ever, but you’re not the nicest. You treat people like dirt. Do you think your God will like someone who belittles His own creation?

What’s the use of going to Mecca every week if you constantly people of the worst thing imaginable? Lashing at people as if they’re not as pious as you? Is that enough to guarantee your admission to a place near to God?

If people themselves can’t stand our rude behavior, what chances will Allah accept our rudeness?

Insha Allah, Allah will guide us to the straight path.

وَلَا تَقُولَنَّ لِشَاْىۡءٍ إِنِّى فَاعِلٌ۬ ذَٲلِكَ غَدًا

And don’t say of anything, “I’ll do that tomorrow.”

إِلَّآ أَن يَشَآءَ ٱللَّهُۚ وَٱذۡكُر رَّبَّكَ إِذَا نَسِيتَ وَقُلۡ عَسَىٰٓ أَن يَهۡدِيَنِ رَبِّى لِأَقۡرَبَ مِنۡ هَـٰذَا رَشَدً۬ا

Without adding, ‘Insha Allah’ (if God’s willing) and remember your lord if you forgot it and say, “I hope that He’ll guide me closer to this right road.”
(Surah Al-Kahf (18) Verse 23 – 24)

Just don't promise anyone anything. You might or might not can do it, you never know. Only Allah knows. If Allah allows it, you can. If it's against Allah's will, you can't.

وَلَوۡلَآ إِذۡ دَخَلۡتَ جَنَّتَكَ قُلۡتَ مَا شَآءَ ٱللَّهُ لَا قُوَّةَ إِلَّا بِٱللَّهِۚ إِن تَرَنِ أَنَا۟ أَقَلَّ مِنكَ مَالاً۬ وَوَلَدً۬ا

And why don’t when you enter your garden, said ‘Masha2 Allah’ (Because of Allah’s will), ‘La quwwata illa billah’ (There’s no power but Allah) even if you see me less than you, in money or child.
(Surah Al-Kahf (18) Verse 39)

Everything in this world, no matter how pretty it is, is the result of Allah's will. None of it is ours. No matter if your garden is prettier, you're richer, or you have more sons, it's because of Allah's will that you have those. So say Masha Allah when you encounter great things, because there are certainly no power greater than Allah.

وَإِمَّا يَنزَغَنَّكَ مِنَ ٱلشَّيۡطَـٰنِ نَزۡغٌ۬ فَٱسۡتَعِذۡ بِٱللَّهِۚ إِنَّهُ ۥ سَمِيعٌ عَلِيمٌ

And if an evil whisper comes to you from the devil, then seek refuge in Allah. Verily, he is the listener, the knower.

(Surah Al-A3raf (7) Verse 200)

ٱدۡفَعۡ بِٱلَّتِى هِىَ أَحۡسَنُ ٱلسَّيِّئَةَۚ نَحۡنُ أَعۡلَمُ بِمَا يَصِفُونَ

Repel evil with which is better. We are most aware with what they utter.

وَقُل رَّبِّ أَعُوذُ بِكَ مِنۡ هَمَزَٲتِ ٱلشَّيَـٰطِينِ

So say, “My lord, I seek refuge in You from the suggestions of the devils.

وَأَعُوذُ بِكَ رَبِّ أَن يَحۡضُرُونِ

And I seek refuge in You, my lord, if they are present.
(Surah Al-Mu3minoon (23) Verse 97-98)

So say Insha Allah, Masha2 Allah, La 7awla wa la quwata illa billa (there’s no power and strength except in Allah), a3uthu billahi min al-shaitan arrajim (I seek refuge from the accursed devils.)

I used to be scared of uttering those words before, because I’m not sure whether I’m using it correctly. I don’t even know what it meant, so why should I say it?

Same could be said with the whole prayer in general. I can’t convince my thick head why I need to do such a thing.

But Al7amdella, now I have quite a clear view of that. I understand the purpose of them all.

When I wake up, I thank Allah that I am still alive. I’m still able to prove my worth, to prove that my existence is not meaningless.

ٱلۡحَمۡدُ لِلَّهِ رَبِّ ٱلۡعَـٰلَمِينَ (٢) ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ (٣) مَـٰلِكِ يَوۡمِ ٱلدِّينِ (٤) إِيَّاكَ نَعۡبُدُ وَإِيَّاكَ نَسۡتَعِينُ (٥) ٱهۡدِنَا ٱلصِّرَٲطَ ٱلۡمُسۡتَقِيمَ (٦) صِرَٲطَ ٱلَّذِينَ أَنۡعَمۡتَ عَلَيۡهِمۡ غَيۡرِ ٱلۡمَغۡضُوبِ عَلَيۡهِمۡ وَلَا ٱلضَّآلِّينَ (٧)

Praises to the Lord of the worlds. The merciful, the beneficent. The King of the Day of Judgment. To you we worship and to you we will return. Show us the straight path. The path of those who You favored, not (the path) of those who earned your anger, and not those who’ve gone astray.
(Surah Al-Fati7ah (1))

Then the Dhuhur prayer, I thank Allah for a smooth morning, and hope for a smooth evening.

Then the Asar prayer, I thank Allah for a good day, or I’ll ask for guidance and a peace of mind if things don’t seem to be in my favor.

Then the Maghrib prayer, I thank Allah for another night, and hope for a great night.

Then the Isya’ prayer, I thank Allah for a lovely day, and hope that tomorrow will be okay.

And the process will repeat itself the other day.

So as you can see, in my absolutely honest opinion, I think that Islam is a great religion for me. I am definitely different than my sixteen year old self as a whole, and I think I am a better person right now. I try to smile a lot, I try to be as kind as possible, as nice as possible, not to think badly of people, and I’m still trying with all my might.

However, my mind still works like it did six years ago. I still think childishly about stuff, and I haven’t matured at all.

And I mean matured as in ‘other people’s matured’ kind of thing. It’s okay if you don’t understand.

I hope this post wouldn’t be misinterpreted and the message I’m trying to portray will be understood by all. :)

This must be the longest post in my blog, but it’s worth it. :D

1 comment:

Bummel Jakarta Indonesia said...

Your words is as crystal as your mind.. And I think your role is awakening your blog reader, your family, your friends, and the important is your kids.. And the other kids.. The future holder... Keep blogging but don't forget to tell each other around you..