Thursday, May 31, 2007

Allah Is Everywhere

We cannot see Allah, but Allah is everywhere. Only in Akhirat, will the fortunate ones amongst us be able to see Allah. They are the ones who, while on earth are obedient to Allah.
Allah said in the Quran, Allah is nearer to us than our jugular veins. We must always remember Allah in whatever we do. Everything that we do or don't do is for Allah's pleasure and we try to go all out to make sure that Allah is pleased with us.
We don't practice usury because Allah hates oppression. We spread love, goodness and kindness because Allah loves peace on earth. We care about others because we seek harmonious relationship among mankind (hablumminannas) so that our relationship with Allah is in harmony too (hablumminallah).
We try to be obedient and good at all times because we know Allah, the One and only One God who is never tired, the One who never sleeps, is watching us and Allah is everywhere.

Little Porcupines

Mind you.... These are not cacti but baby porcupines!!

They look cute aren't they? I just wonder how the mother porcupine must have felt when she delivered these baby porcupines... whether the sharp needle-like thorns hurt her or not.

Most probably it's just like mother hen's case. Her eggs are soft while they are still inside her, but once they come out, they harden and appear as eggs like we see in our everyday life.

(I got this picture from an e-mail sent by an acquaintance. So, regrettably, I don't know who the real owner of this picture is.)

The Problem With Maths...

When I was young, one of my teachers commented that among all the subjects taught in school, Mathematics IS the easiest... He said , the subject will become easier if I were to think positive and psyche myself up saying that "I CAN DO IT... I CAN DO IT !" all the time.
Looking back now, I think he is right. I notice that, my students, once they have what I call as a 'defeatist mentality', they tend to easily give up and stop trying such that even if they were given simple problems, they won't be able to solve them.
So, each time I encounter students like these, the most important thing that I try to do is build up their self-confidence first. Something must have happened in their history of learning Maths so much so that they've become so negative towards Maths.
I once had a student who repeated her class for MAT xxx. When she was in my class, surprisingly, I noticed that she understood whatever that was being taught in class and could answer all the assignments given correctly. I asked her what exactly happened when she took the course the first time. She said, whenever she asked her previous lecturer, she was always rebuked with the phrase, "Don't tell me you don't even know a simple thing like that?", which made her feel so turned off and rejected. So, she stopped trying and stopped asking.
I can understand her plight. My own son who was in primary school years ago once came home and told me that when he asked his teacher how to solve a particular Maths problem, was given this answer instead: "Go back and ask your mom!" The teacher was lucky he wasn't in front of me at that time.... for if not, I would have strangled him!

Sunsilk Lady

There was a big flood last weekend in
Kuala Lumpur, the capital city of Malaysia.

I pity those unfortunate residents living in Kuala Lumpur. It's a heavy price to pay in the name of development.

It's times like this that one tend to feel fortunate to live in Dungun... a quiet, serene, scenic town with azure blue skies and in the afternoon blessed with turqoise blue sea. Dungun is a town situated in Terengganu, one of the east coast states.
In times of adversity, I guess one should always do istighfar to Allah and always look at things from a positive perspective. The picture attached above was sent to me by an acquaintance. Children are blessed with the ability to easily adapt to good or bad situations, infact they can still enjoy having a good bath and playfully shampooing an elderly's hair!!!

Wrath of Allah

Allah is Al Jabbar. Al Qahhar. Allah is able to do all things Allah desires. With mere "Kun".... It will be "Fayakoon".
The oppressed Muslims in Iraq and Afghanistan may not have technologies as advanced as the kuffars. The one and only one thing that they have is their du'a. Supplications were and are still being made to Allah so that Allah will somehow torment their oppressors just like in the Ahzab war during ar Rasul's times.
The American soldiers and President Bush's administration showed their might in the Middle East.... but lo! Allah showed His might too. Allah gave them Katrina and Rita in the states near the Gulf of Mexico. Allah gave them big forest fires in California. Allah gave them tornadoes in the mid-eastern states. Allah gave them floods in the eastern states. What more are they asking for?
Which of the favors of Allah are they denying?

The Splitting of the Moon

In the movie 'Devdas' which was directed by Sanjay Leela Bhansali, Devdas acknowledged that Paro is beautiful, as beautiful as the moon. The only thing that he didn't like about Paro was that, to him, she was arrogant. He mentioned that even the moon is not arrogant as Paro is. What touched me was Paro's answer . She said, she can afford to be arrogant because she has no scars. The face of the moon is full of scars.
The moon has no atmosphere like the earth. Its surface is full with craters made by bombardments of passing meteorites and whatever debris flying in space which were and are attracted by the moon's gravitational pull.
It is common knowledge that since man first landed on the moon, they discovered that it showed symptoms of having been split into two . Tests done proved the theory to be true. What Muslims knew all along as mentioned in history books is that, during the times of the prophet Muhammad SAW, he was asked by the musyrikoon to prove that he is a prophet.
What Rasulullah did was, he pointed his finger to the moon and the moon was split into two. He then moved half of the moon to one side and the other half to another. Finally, he made both parts of the moon to gather as we see the moon today. There were witnesses among different Arab tribes to testify this astounding occasion as recorded in the history books. Praise be to Allah, the one and only God. Lord of all the worlds.
(I got this picture of the moon e-mailed to me by a friend, most probably this picture was provided by NASA)

Bush Can Never Win

I got this superimposed picture from an e-mail sent by an acquaintance.
I guess no matter how hard President Bush tries to manipulate the war in Iraq, he could and will never win.
Muslims are die-hard people...willing to die for the sake of Islam. The American soldiers fight to live, while the Mujahideens fight with all their might to die.... surely the results won't be the same. Dying as a martyr is the best and most glorious form of death seek by Muslims.
Once during Ar Rasul SAW's days, there was this Muslimah who had three sons who went for jihad. When news came that one of her sons died during the war, she was silent. When news came that another son of hers also died as a martyr, she was still silent and kept her composure. Finally... when she was informed that the third son also achieved martyrdom, only then did she cry.
When she was asked the reason why she cried, she said she was sad not because of her sons' deaths but because she no longer has sons to offer to fight in the path of Allah! Masya Allah....
History usually repeats itself. Perhaps President Bush and his administration should take heed of past experiences from the previous wars in Korea and Vietnam. Moreover, the story cooked up by the president about the existence of WMD (weapons of mass destruction) proved to be a mere hoax. One certain fact that should be embedded in the Americans' minds is that Osama Ben Laden's threat is for real.... Osama is SBD (silent but deadly).

Visit Malaysia Year 2007

I got this picture from Mr Hassanul Firman who is now attached to UiTM Kelantan.

This picture was taken at the airport in Kelantan. Now, this is the kind of creativity that all of us would love to see... and foreigners too. Something different and unexpected.
Proud of their language and culture, the Kelantanese dared to be different and demonstrated it in this sign board.

Marriage Made In Heaven

I got this picture from an e-mail sent by an acquaintance through the internet.

Years ago, someone wrote in the New Straits Times that marriage is like a revolving door. Those who are in wants out... and those who are out wants in.

I later read in the Reader's Digest about a mother's advice to her daughter on the day she got married. The mother warned, if the daughter has any arguments with her husband, don't ever mention it to her.

Surprised, the daughter asked why. The mother said, "You might forgive him... I may not!"

It really takes two to tango. A fairy tale wedding is only the tip of the iceberg. What lies ahead after that day depends on how the couple react and make adjustments in their lives accordingly. Some are lucky enough to survive but a whole lot couldn't make it last. It's quite a gamble so one has to think thoroughly before really deciding to tie the knot and settle down.
It's best that one chooses one's companion according to the values laid down by Allah. Hopefully one will be bestowed with "sakeenah", "mawaddah" and "rahmah" in one's household. If one gets married in order to seek "mardhatillah", insya Allah, hopefully one's wishes will be granted by Allah.
One thing I must mention here is that, each time a son of Adam ties the knot, one of Iblees' children by the name of Daasim is assigned to wreck the marriage and tear it apart.... Dasim works 24 hours a day.... day in day out. One must always remember to seek refuge in Allah and remind each other about syaitans' wrong doings and bad intentions.
The one and only way to be sure that one is on the right track is by always checking and reminding each other to live according to the rules set by Allah. Perform all the wajib deeds, leave without question all the haram deeds, live according to the sunnah of the prophet Muhammad SAW.
Even the very first marriage made in heaven between Adam and Hawa was not spared from trials and tribulations ordained by Allah.... so what the heck. Just get on with it and pray that the person whom you chose to marry can withstand all the pressures of a married life and keep to promises made through good times and bad times... till you breathe your last.

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Learning From Mistakes

Years ago I read from somewhere this phrase :

"If you learn from your own mistakes, you are clever... but, if you learn from other people's mistakes, you are intelligent!"

I suppose, intelligent is cleverer than clever.

Just now, I met a colleague. He asked me whether I've been blogging for quite sometime already, to which I answered no. To be frank, I learnt about blogging only last week, under the tutelage of my three gurus : Dr Yusri, Mr Wan Nazif and Madame Farhah.
They taught us only the basics of blogging... the rest, we were supposed to explore and venture on our own. Being an old timer myself, I can understand the insecurities felt by the older generation. I must confess. Even though we didn't mean to, 'old' folks like me are not so 'open' and tend to tread cautiously when it comes to using new sophisticated gadgets and new technologies. It's human nature, I guess. The older you are, the more sceptical you become and you possess lesser ability to adapt to new changes.
He he he.... I once read that Tun Dr Siti Hasmah (Tun Dr Mahathir's wife) herself felt odd and reluctant when the hand phone was first introduced to her. Her children had to cajole her into learning how to use the new technology because if not it would be a problem for her when it comes to answering her children's short messaging services (sms).
My advice is ; just give it a go. You learn from your own mistakes as you go along the way. If you were to repeat them... ahaa... just laugh at yourself and sing like Britney Spears: "Oooops! I did it again....". For example, I've just discovered that once we've typed whatever material we have in mind, it's best that we save it first. Preview it many times as we please and, until we're really sure that basically there is zero unintentional error, then only click the publish button. If not, hmm... there might be a problem in adjusting the paragraphs. The worst part is, even though you take extra precautions to adhere to whatever I've mentioned above, the problem still persists.
So far, I still can't solve this problem.... any suggestions?

संजय लीला Bhansali

संजय लीला भंसाली दिरेक्टेद अत लीस्ट तवो मोविएस ठाट ई क्नोव ऑफ़ :

१। हम दिल दे चुके सनम
२। देवदास

ई'वे वात्चेद बोथ मोविएस ऎंड ई थिंक हे इस अ प्रोलिफिक दिरेक्टोर।

बोथ मोविएस मके यू क्रय ओवर थे हिरोइन'एस फटे (अच्तेद ब्य एश्वर्या रे)

ही हे हे ....हाउ'एस ठाट? ई'म जुस्त टेस्टिंग मय व्रितिंग इन हिंदी।

Writing In Hindi

Are you aware that we can write in Hindi even though we don't know Hindi nor can read in Hindi? Ahaa... I've discovered that by clicking to 'Settings' and after you scroll down to the question whether you want the transliteration button available for you or not, if you answer yes... hmm... you can then go back to your posting ; start typing some English words...and voila... you have Hindi writings instead.
Errr... the only problem that I can think of for now is that.... I myself couldn't read what I wrote once everything that I've written is converted to Hindi... Not to mention whether it's grammatically correct or not in Hindi...
What ever it is.... let's give it a try.... My next posting will be in Hindi, insya Allah. Bollywood... here I come!
P/S If only some genius can convert my writing fom English to Arabic.... or English to Spanish

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Test of Endurance

The Quran, suurah Al Kahfi , verse 46:

"Wealth and children are an ornament of life of the world. But the good deeds which endure are better in thy Lord's sight for reward, and better in respect of hope".

(translation done by Muhammad Marmaduke Pickhtall)

Life on earth is not meant to be permanent. We were sent here to be tested who among us all are the most obedient and subservient to the rules set down by the Almighty Allah, our Lord, the one and only God. Allah has promised that those who obey will be rewarded accordingly in the hereafter.

Some of us human beings are tested by Allah by having fame, wealth, lots of children... Others may be tested by poverty, sickness, catastrophies or things of the kind. What ever tests we are given by Allah, we must be steadfast and not lose sight of our ultimate goal in life i.e. seeking mardhatillah.

If and when we finally understand how things work, we will finally be able to succumb to the will of Allah, the real owner of this great universe. Remembering part of verse 286 of suurah al Baqarah:

"Allah tasked not a soul beyond its scope. For it (is only) that which it hath earned, and against it (only) that which it has deserved...."
(translation by Muhammad Marmaduke Pickhtall)

Being a knowledgeable Muslim means come what may, we, insya Allah, can cope with this test of endurance and it is our greatest hope that finally when it's our turn to return to our final abode, we are able to answer and fulfill Allah's invitation as stated in suurah al Fajr, verses 27 - 30 (translation by Muhammad Marmaduke Pickhtall):

27 : "But ah! thou soul at peace!"
28 : "Return unto thy Lord, content in His good pleasure!"
29 : "Enter thou among My bondmen!"
30 : "Enter thou My Garden!"

(Acknowledgement: All the photos (the Lamborghini, the picture of the lava flowing down from the volcano etc) laid down in this blog do not belong to me. I got it from e-mails sent to me by friends and acquaintances.... so the real source is unknown. The photo of Mawi and Dato' Siti Nurhaliza has nothing to do with this article, it is posted just as an attraction for blog surfers to read my writings)

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Learning Spanish

Learning Spanish is fun and easy. It is even much easier to learn if one already knows English and Bahasa Malaysia and a mish mash of Arabic. This is because Spanish lies in the same family tree as the French and Italian languages. Learning Spanish is a whole lot easier when compared to learning French because, in Spanish, except for a few words (especially involving the alphabets j and h), what you see is what you pronounce.

A new learner can actually 'guess' what the particular Spanish word means once one gets the hang of it. The following are examples of some familiar words to an English/French/Italian speaking learner:

Spanish - English
mucho - much
hola - hello
tengo - have
desperado - desperate
estudiante - student
mi - my
persona - person
muy - very
bien - good/well
y - and
tarde - late/later
bueno - good
buenos dias - good morning
buenas tardes - good afternoon
buenas noches - good night
gracias - thank you
dinero - money
si - yes/ if
palabra - word
amor - love
silencio - silent/silence
oportunidad - opportunity
capacidad - capacity
por - for
preparar - to prepare
amigo - friend
tipo - type
maestro - teacher
coche - car
pobre - poor
selectivo - selective
paz - peace
promesa - promise
pronto - quick
educacion - education
hambre - hungry
vida - life
loca - mad
Dios mio - my God
hombre - man
mujer - woman
hermana - sister
hermano - brother
abuela - grandmother
abuelo - grandfather
madre - mother
padre - father
algodon - cotton
Ojala - hopefully (originated from Oh Allah)
uno/una - one
paloma - dove/pigeon
blanca - white
zorro - fox
arriba - above, high
esposa - wife
marido - husband
leccion - lesson
cuando - when
ser - to be
que - that, which, who, whom, when

and so on and so forth.

Any how, beware... there are always exceptions.... My Spanish professor warned us not to generalize things. For example the phrase : " Tengo embarazada" does not mean "I am embarass" (even though it sounds like one), but , "I am pregnant"!

Writing this piece reminds me of my Spanish Professor's class years ago. Profesor Jorge Febles was trying to introduce to the class the phrase " Si tuviera dinero..... que compraria usted?" (which means : "If you have the money... what would you buy?"). When it came to my turn, I answered like this : "Si tuviera dinero, compraria un coche" (If I have the money, I would buy a car).

Professor Febles then asked me again: "Que tipo (del coche)?" - which means what type (of car?)

I answered : "Un corvette!" (A corvette - it's a type of sports car but not as expensive as the Lamborghini...) , to which there was complete silence before the class broke into uncontrollable guffaws... The professor slapped his forehead and unable to contain his laughter, laughed together with the class.

Perhaps it was because I looked like a nun (to them) that made them so taken aback by my answer. Nuns are not supposed to have any desires of having any worldly things, I supposed. Any how, that incident stuck in my mind... until today.

Managing Anger

When I was taking Physical Geography lessons years ago, I didn't pay much attention when my Geography teacher at Sekolah Menengah Dato Haji Hussein, old Mr M. Mahendran, taught the whole class about volcanoes.

Any how, I remember him talking about the two kinds of volcanic eruptions and lava flows.... The first one is called the 'pahoe- hoe' flow (like the ones found in Hawaii) and the second one is called the 'aah-aa' flow (like what happened to Mount St Helens, located somewhere in the west coast, in the northern part of the American continent.... or, as the history books wrote, the famous eruption of the 'Krakatoa' i.e. a volcano which is no longer existent in one of the Indonesian islands).

The conclusion that I made after hearing his lecture was that, it's better to have the pahoe-hoe flow rather than the aah-aa flow because it's not that 'dangerous'.... As I get much older I tend to associate anger with these two kinds of lava flow: the easy to handle kind of anger (the pahoe-hoe flow) and the volatile and disruptive kind (the aah-aa flow).

It's normal to get angry. Everybody gets angry once in a while. People get angry if things don't turn out as expected or things happen not up to their expectations. It's how one handles one's anger that makes a difference.

Some people vent out their anger and sadness by talking it out to friends or someone whom they can trust. It's good that we let the frustration go out in little packages. It's a lot less harmful when compared to keeping it all to oneself and the moment you can't keep it any longer...burst it out on innocent people (like what happened in the shoot out in one of the campuses in the USA last month).

When one feels angry, if you're standing up.... try to sit down. If one is standing up, try to lie down. If one still can't shake off the angry feeling, go and perform the ablution. Better still, take a good long bath. That's what my late Dad did each time my siblings and I got into a fight when we were small. He didn't ask what the matter was. The first question he always ask was that if we had taken a bath yet, which we answered in the negative.... So, following his orders, we paraded obediently to the bathroom and, since we were cool headed after that.... all the fighting was quietly resolved.

Syaitaan love to make mischief and cause agony to human beings. Iblis himself has asked permission from Allah SWT to sway us from the right path. He had vowed to bring us with him, the descendants of Adam a.s., to hell, which will be his (iblis') final abode. These mischievous unseen beings can travel through our blood system. When we get angry, our blood is pumped (and travels) faster in the blood system and hence we have a tendency to raise our hands and legs to hit out at others or to trigger the M16 or do things of the kind.

Knowing the history of the creation of mankind helps to put us in the correct state of mind. Better still, pardon all your enemies. You will live a more comfortable and easy life once you've done that. Ar Rasul SAW said it's not those who have a good physique that are considered strong but those can actually control their anger....

Saturday, May 26, 2007

Naming Your Child

One of the first responsibilities of being a parent is to provide a name to your child. As a Muslim parent, the name has to be a name with good meaning because calling your child is like making du'a.

Choose your child's name wisely... Nowadays there's a lot of books in bookstores providing various choices of names with good meanings. You surely wouldn't want your child to be jeered at or being made fun of by their friends just because the name of your choice sounded 'different' to a layman's ears.
The best choices are names which have the meaning of 'the slave of God' . Such names are like : 'Abdullah, 'Abdul Quddus, 'Abdur Rahman, 'Abdur Rahim etc. Next are the names of the prophets such as : Muhammad, 'Isa, Musa, Ibraheem, Ismaeel etc. Next are the names of the sahabas such as : Abu Bakr, Omar, Ali, Osman, Mu'az, Mus'ab just to name a few.
Naming your child after a pious person is also considered as a good choice. You can then tell your child how that name originated, to whom that name belonged to once upon a time , how that pious man/woman lived, how he/she behaved, what positive contribution he/she gave to the world and so on and so forth. At least your child has someone in his mind that he can associate himself with. Someone that he can emulate and be proud of.
Hmmm... For all your trouble in finding beautiful and well thought out names... alas.... you discovered that your precious son " 'Abdullah" is called only "Dolah" or your precious "Ahmad" is called "Mat" among their friends.... If only this piece of knowledge can be spread out to more people out there....

Black Magic

Black Magic was introduced thousands of years ago by Haaruut and Maaruut (refer to surah al Baqarah below) as a test for human beings.... It's a sinful deed. Those who practise it, be sure to bear in mind that not even the best lawyers on earth can answer for all your deeds on judgement day...
Surah al Baqarah ayah 102 - 103 : translation by Muhammad Marmaduke Pickhtall:
102 - "And follow that which the devils falsely related against the kingdom of Solomon. Solomon disbelieved not; but the devils disbelieved, teaching mankind magic and that which was revealed to the two angels in Babel, Haaruut and Maaruut. Nor did they (the two angels) teach it to anyone till they had said: We are only a temptation, therefore disbelieve not (in the guidance of Allah). And from these two (angels) people learn that by which they cause division between man and wife; but they injure thereby no-one save by Allah's leave. And they learn that which harmeth them and profiteth them not. And surely they do know that he who trafficketh therein will have no (happy) portion in the Hereafter; and surely evil is the price for which they sell their souls, if they but knew".
103 - "And if they had believed and kept from evil, a recompense from Allah would be better, if they only knew".

Those who have been 'fortunate' enough to be struck by black magic and lived to tell can verify that black magic is for real and how terrible life can be. Husbands can be separated from wives. To others, the victims look normal, but in actual fact, he can only live like a zombie and see life floating away, wasted just like that....Worst of all, children of the victims of black magic suffer silently.

After years of suffering, I have only this to say....If one does not feel well, and medical doctors (even experts) one after another simply can't detect what's wrong with you....ahaaa......most probably, one has to revert to spiritual healing techniques.

Thanks to a caring friend, I was introduced to 'Manzil', a book arranged by Sheikhul Hadith Maulana Muhammad Zakaria, published by Perniagaan Jahabersa (browse through if you would like to get a copy of the book).

This Manzil is good for those under attack from black magic, disturbed by genies or problems of that sort. All you have to do is to recite with 'tawajjuh' all the selected verses of the Quran including the seven verses of the Quran known as the 'Munjiyat' ...and the 'Syifa' ' verses. Insya Allah, you'll finally and hopefully be able to see that at least there's a light at the end of the tunnel for all your woes....

Allah SWT has said that there's a cure for all kinds of diseases (except for death) never give up hope.

Friday, May 25, 2007


I wasn't born with this name..Taaherah. The name given to me by my parents was Zuraimi. I hated that name since I was a little girl. Years later, when I met Ustazah Fuzla Suria Hamid, she looked up in the Arabic dictionary and informed me that 'Zuraimi' has a bad meaning....

So, those who knew me by my old name are my old set of friends....and those who call me by my present name are those whom I knew post my US days...

My mother tongue is, from 'raimi', my siblings called me 'Reming'.....and that's how my blog got this name....

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Alhamdulillah ....I now have my own blog


I am Taaherah Zainuddin.

Looking forward to interact with all of you out there...wherever you are....