Saturday, December 24, 2016

macam mana nak
tak buat lagi dosa,
kalau taubat tu tak
cukup lagi dose?

Saturday, December 10, 2016

Living in 
a washing machine;
in a cycle circular
faster and faster
at the centre


Tuesday, November 29, 2016

the da'ie should be like the autumn tree,

who through her pain of falling leaves,
brightens the world in orange hues.

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Ya Allah, 
let the sun come out;
let not the cold harden my heart.

For the heart hardened aches,
for the heart hardened 
more easily breaks.

Monday, October 17, 2016

one can live several different lives concurrently;
while feeling in each and every one


let not the loneliness be 
let not the loneliness be


Thursday, September 15, 2016

Forgive and Forget

Often without even trying, 
the ones closest to our heart 
(by the very nature of their closeness)
are the ones who can hurt us the most.

And because it hurts so much, 
it is our parents, siblings, lovers, close friends
who we can find hardest to forgive.

The remedy in the Quran addressing this problem 
is a quite simple piece of advice:

 "وَلـيَعفُواْ وَليَصفَحُوٓاْ"

and do not punish 
and turn the page

'forgive and forget'.

But we just said that
it's not always that easy, is it?

So the ayat continues by asking:

"أَلَا تُحِبُّونَ أًَن يَغفِرَ اللهًُ لَكُم"

"Would you not like 
that Allah should forgive you?"

SubhanAllah, with this
Allah has weighed up the difficulty of forgiving and forgetting 
against the magnitude of Allah's forgiveness.

(And what can possibly compare to the magnitude of Allah's forgiveness??)

Meaning, if a person still refuses to forgive and forget, 
it is quite possibly a problem of iman (faith).
If he still refuses to forgive and forget, then
he has to perhaps look into his heart 
to see what is stopping him: 
it could very well be pride and arrogance.

The ayat concludes with:

"وٓ اللهُ غٓفُورٌ رّٓحِيمٌ"

"And Allah is Forgiving and Merciful"

So..will you 
forgive and forget? 🙂

Ustaz Nouman Ali Khan's tafsir of ayat 22 of Surah An-Nur

Sunday, September 11, 2016


But then, what is love -
that emotion, intangible;
that feeling, unmeasurable?
It seems that even at its most quantifiable,
love is but a complex series of chemical reactions in the brain, incomprehensible.

There doesn't seem to be a unit of measurement for love;
like there are metres and miles to measure distance,
or hertz and decibels to measure sound.

And so, empty sound
is what "I love you"
too often turns out to be.

That, to me, 
was prophet Ibrahim's lesson
in his willingness to sacrifice his son:

That there actually is 
a unit of measurement of love -  sacrifice.
That the more one loves, the more for his object of love
he should be willing to sacrifice.

Ibrahim's love to God was not intangible,
not empty - it was proven by his willingness to sacrifice what he loved most in this world.

Eiduladha is a celebration of that sacrifice; of that love.

selamat hari raya, everybody!! 🙂

Thursday, September 8, 2016

Does the heart want 
happiness, or familiarity? 

I think it yearns for the former
but finds contentment in the latter.

Maybe that's why a cloudy day is strangely comforting.. 🤔

(Until it starts raining lah. Then not happy, or comfortable)

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Papa is a Tree

Pa, I remember you arriving home from work,
hands on hips, imitating the branches of a tree:

"Papa is a tree. 
Try and climb papa!"

Gleefully adik and I obliged, 
having never climbed a real tree,
racing to climb you like the city kids we are
(and having little regard for the health of your back 😅).

It has been nearly 15 years now since we last did that.
Those years have seen us kids 
grow up, leave school, fly overseas.
While you, Pa; 
our football coach, 
our chauffeur,
our best friend, 
have stayed our steady tree. 

I guess it can be tricky playing that role..
Being that steady over the years, 
it's easy to blend into the background -
people forgetting how important you are.

As you put out roots into yesterday, 
giving us steady support;
as you put out shoots into tomorrow, 
sheltering us from Life's elements;
as you put out flowers and fruits, 
nurturing those around you;
as you put out leaves green, red and brown, 
coloring our lives.

Trees, like everything, grow old
but they do develop a certain beauty with old age:
barks scarred and wrinkled with wisdom, 
leaves no longer growing thick,
revealing the empty nests of those city kids
who once lived on you, but
now live halfway across the world.

They remember still what you once said,
hands on hips, imitating the branches of a tree:

"Papa is a tree. 
Try and climb papa!"

Happy birthday, pa..
We love you! ❤️❤️😬😬

Monday, August 22, 2016

It's easy to look down on babies;
those chubby piles of blubber who don't seem to know how to do anything  
but eat, sleep, poop and cry
(and bite - yes, Dik, I'm referring to you.)

Yet babies are doing something many of us cannot claim to be doing:
Growing up - physically, mentally, emotionally. 

Because how many of us "grown ups" forget to do just that?
We forget to grow up, and merely grow old;
living our lives blindly from point A to point B,
from task to thoughtless task.

So perhaps it is from those chubby piles of blubber
who seem to know nothing
that we have to take a big lesson;
one that we all once knew 
but many of us have forgotten:

to be amazed with everything, 
to smile sincerely,
to learn readily.
To grow up.

Happy birthday, Dik :)
(And all the best for your test tomorrow. Don't bite anyone 😑)

Saturday, July 30, 2016


Often we listen to our bodies: 
aware of when it's hungry, we eat
aware of when it's tired, we rest
aware of how important it is, we exercise.

But too rarely we listen to our hearts:
to let it eat with the Quran
to let it rest with solat
to exercise it with zikrullah;

when our bodies are but vessels for our souls,
and it is our hearts 
which are who we are.

Such is the human being;
occupied with the superficial,
forgetful of what's vital. fit is your heart?

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Goodbye, Fikri

The airport took my housemate away today,
and so in this house I am now alone.

But I guess that's the nature of my course:
come 5th year you gotta start getting used to 
people entering and leaving Life at the hospital, and 
entering and leaving your life at the airport.

My discussion with Fikri yesterday was quite a deep one.
Over iftar we contemplated the temporality of this dunya,
and the basis of human relationships,
and indeed, how fleeting those relationships are 
if not fillah; for Allah.

On that basis, what we should aim for 
is to be with our loved ones forever
not in this dunya, but
in a good place in the hereafter.

Thanks for all the reminders, Fikri.
May we meet twice:
Once in this dunya, once in Jannah, biidznillah :')

(Now..back to the attic 😩)

P.s. ak balik tadi, hari cerah kot..siap gi jogging. Alhamdulillah doa ko termakbul haha. Make doa that the rest of my days will be sunny, til the day I go home to my family..ameen!

P.p.s. thx again bday present ak. Heart-warming..harap2 room-warming jgak winter nnt. 😝

P.p.p.s bajet macho gile muka ko dlm gamba2 ni

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Birthday Book

To write a book has always been my dream - today it still is.
Then again, I already have written some books - 
if those books I wrote as a young child count:
books about the adventures of a hero in a made-up planet,
a book compiling random stories and tales of Pokemon.

And, then again,
maybe life itself is a book;
the first chapter written in words unseen
at the moment we draw our first breath,
or at the moment we start existing as a ball of cells,
or even when our parents first met.

If so then every birthday is a chapter
of a story which nobody knows how it will unfold, 
nor end;
the story of a hero in a made-up planet,
living out a compilation of random stories 
(and yeah, the odd Pokemon once in a while).

Perhaps, then, a birthday 
is a chance to take a pause.
To stop and reflect on how the story has panned out so far,
though it is so very tempting to rush to the next chapter.

Perhaps it is a chance to appreciate 
not just you, the hero of your story,
but also those 'minor' characters around you
who we too often disregard as 
playing only cameo roles -

the neighbour,
the canteen lady,
the person you passed by on the street today -

forgetting that they, in fact, have
kept us entertained, 
came up with surprises, 
gave our lives meaning
over all those chapters.

Also forgetting that those 'minor characters' 
are themselves developing; 
the heroes of their own books,
written in parallel to mine, but 
so often intersecting with my story.

I was gifted this book for my birthday this year:

"When Breath becomes Air"

a book not completed by its original author
because he died before he could finished it.
His wife wrote the rest.

A book about meaning, about identity, about mortality - 
a (surprisingly 😜) deep present from a person from
one of those characters in my life who turn out to be not-so-minor after all;
who has over the chapters entertained, come up with surprises, gave me meaning.
And yes, herself developed as a heroine.

Maybe I shouldn't let it stay a dream, 
and start writing a book..
If Allah wills, I'll live to see it to completion.
If not, perhaps someone else will finish it for me.

After all, perhaps 
we are not meant to finish our own book..

Thank you to all who wished me happy birthday today,
I am grateful to have everyone of you in my story, 
as I hope you are grateful to have me in yours.

(thanks Dik for the wonderful present :))

Saturday, May 28, 2016

Babies, Yu Yi and Prayer

Perhaps in how we perform our prayers, 
we should be learn from babies
to feel yu yi;
to live in the now.

They who have yet to learn how to crawl,
and so are not always in a rush to go somewhere;
They who have yet to learn how to say "me",
and so are not always busy thinking about themselves;
They who have yet to learn how to plan ahead,
and so are not always occupied about
what to do now,
in 5 minutes,
in 5 years.

Perhaps in how we perform our prayers,
we should learn from babies,
who live knowing they are
dependent fully on others.

They who have yet to learn how to feed themselves,
and so cry desperately whenever hungry
knowing instinctively that
survival depends entirely on the mercy of others.

They who have not yet forgotten how to be dependent,
have not yet fallen for the illusion that 
whatever they have in life
is there only because of their effort
instead of the mercy of God.

To live in the now,
and in total reliance on Him;
perhaps we need to learn from babies
in how we perform our prayers.

For what is prayer but a desperate cry
to the One whose mercy 
we are totally reliant upon?

"Ist es nicht schön?"

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Let's weigh the pros and cons of the actor playing the suicide bomber shouting "Allahu Akbar" before the simulated bomb explosion.

- The Greater Manchester Police says it is to make the simulation more "realistic". 
(A questionable pro at best, and I can't think of ANY other advantages.)

- using a phrase Muslims say in prayer everyday, associating it with an act of terror,
- legitimises - makes "realistic" - the narrative that extremist groups promote: that killing innocent lives is an act of worship in Islam.
- it makes explicit the implicit idea that Islam, at best, predisposes to terrorist acts; and at worst, actively encourages it
- all in all, alienating the very community, Muslims, that the police should be reaching out to and working together with in order to combat terrorism

Ironic that a counter-terrorism exercise contributes to the very terrorism it plans to counter.
I congratulate the GMP for admitting their mistake and apologizing for it.

Thursday, March 31, 2016

Awfa's Treatise on Loyalty and Trust

How beautiful a couple make Loyalty and Trust,
though too often they are found separated; incomplete:
This is the lesson from a baby
who hasn't yet learnt how to not trust.

A baby is born with eyes that do not judge.
But one of the first social skills she will learn
is to be anxious around strangers. 
To distrust.

You see, we don't forget how to trust.
Rather, we learn how to distrust. 
It is a natural stage of a baby's development;
maybe, an instinctive preparation to face a world
which is not always what it seems:
where people cheat, lie, deceive, play power games.

And to cheat, lie, deceive, play power games,
are social skills the baby, too, 
will learn as she grows up;
though now she is deceptively innocent.

We don't forget how to trust.
Rather, we learn how to distrust. 
perhaps the belief that other people deceive
is a mechanism we build in our own minds
to cope with the guilt of our own deception.
Perhaps the belief that other people are not what they seem
is a mechanism we build in our minds
to cope with the burden of our own secrets.

If so then to trust is something to re-learn. 
And to learn how to trust others, 
one first has to learn to be worthy 
of the trust of others. 

How can I expect loyalty from others when I am myself untrustworthy? 
How can I expect to trust others when I am myself disloyal? 

Loyalty and Trust come hand in hand.
Naturally. Beautifully.
But only if they meet.

This is the lesson from a baby
who hasn't yet learnt how to not trust:
though too often they are found separated; incomplete,
how beautiful a couple make Loyalty and Trust. 

Credits: Awfa binti Adlan Wafi

Sunday, March 20, 2016

In a Masjid in Puchong

I distinctly remember my mind being blown,
as I opened that book 
picked off a shelf 
in a masjid in Puchong
over four years ago now -
a Chinese translation of the Quran.

Immediately I turned the page
to one of my favourite ayat,
and as I often did back then 
took a picture, put on a cheap filter, and posted it on Insta 😓

But why did the image of Chinese letters
side by side with the Quran's Arabic words
have to blow my mind so?
When we have been taught in school
that the message of Islam is universal,
for all peoples of the world?

Perhaps it's because we have forgotten 
this unifying message of the deen,
and replaced it with the sentiment of racism and nationalism;
a sentiment taught implicitly in our Muslim homes, 
and lived out in our everyday lives.
All under the guise of 
Us Muslims, versus Them kafirs.

Until eventually we come to believe 
that Islam is Arabic,
or Malay.

How sad, how ironic
that we Muslims are the ones who hide the universal beauty of Islam
on a shelf in a masjid in Puchong:

"O mankind, 
indeed We have created you from male and female and 
made you peoples and tribes that 
you may know one another. 

Indeed, the most noble of you 
in the sight of Allah 
is the most righteous of you. 

Allah is Knowing and Acquainted.

- Surah Al-Hujurat:13

Monday, March 14, 2016

Possibly the most dangerous disease to affect a da'ie is that of self-righteousness.
Afflicted, he/she begins to think him/herself as pure,
belittling others and being rough to the very people
he/she is supposed to call to Allah.


Saturday, March 12, 2016

Popo's Relationship Advice

An extract from yesterday's conversation* with popo**

Me: popo sudah makan?
Popo: sudah..!
Me: saya pon dah makan pagi tadi la
Popo: makan apa? Nasi lemak ka? Kahkahkah
Me: haha tada la..nasi putih sama telur goreng saja laa
Popo: manyak panai ah..! Masak pon panai, semua pon panai.. Satu hari nanti lu kawen la kahkahkah
Me: hahaha popo tolong saya pujuk mama kasi saya kawen laa
Popo: cali sendili la.. Lu punya mama tala cali untuk lu la kahkahkah..! Haiya...mikai*** ah!

* translate will definitely not help with this, guys
**chinese for 'grandma'
***how popo pronounces my name

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Seat Booking

You know why I enjoy those weekly train journeys?
It is a chance to escape from both the weekday hassle of Preston hospital and the weekend hassle of Manchester;
a quiet time for me to share with just the window and my thoughts.

Sometimes, however, it would be a chance I wouldn't have:
if I catch the train at rush hour, the train is often full to bursting.
And so I would have to stand up for the nearly hour-long journey in close proximity to equally tired people who were also unlucky enough to not get a seat.

So, after a while, I developed a sense of apprehension when the train approaches the station..
would it be a relaxing, seated journey?
or would it be spent desperately trying to be comfortable by leaning on something the whole time?

Then one day, as I was getting on a train half-full 
(which is most 'exciting' because you don't know whether you're assured a seat or not), 
a thought struck me:
my seat has been booked!

No, I didn't make a booking via the trainline website; and so no, the seat did not have my name on it - 
but my seat booking is even more guaranteed than that!
Because (I just realized) Allah has decreed that 
on this particular train, at this particular time, a guy named Mikhail will get this particular seat.

And if Allah has decreed it, I will get it regardless.
(And if he has not, than I won't get it regardless.)

I guess that's life in general -
we so often feel under pressure;
under attack from all the decisions we have to make, the assignments we have to get done, the seats we have to race for.

But stress for what..??
"rufi'atil aqlaam, wa jaffatis suhuf", as the Prophet s.a.w. wisely described the nature of the fate which has been written for each of us:
"The pens have been lifted and the pages have dried".

A firm belief in qadha' & qadar will make you a chilled person. 
And that's cool, bruv 😎

(Not to say don't put in any effort at all lah.. 
If I don't make effort to get on the train in the first place, how should I even hope to get a seat??

The point is: Relax. Make the effort. Then chill.
"rufi'atil aqlaam, wa jaffatis suhuf") 

Monday, March 7, 2016


The applicability of thermodynamics against jiwang:

Lower the temperature.
The heart has a melting point.

"Until your heart is in check,
you can't use your mind"
- Nouman Ali Khan 

But to make a decision with BOTH heart and mind? that requires more than a knowledge of thermodynamics 🤓

(Confirm ak kne tembak pasni sbb bajet paham thermodynamics)

Sunday, March 6, 2016

Happy Mother's Day!

At the antenatal clinic last week, 
I was given the chance to operate the ultrasound device 
which detects the heartbeat of a fetus in the womb. 

Taking a while to find the heartbeat, it then took me a few seconds for me to realize how profound a situation I found myself in:
I was holding the device which allowed a would-be mother to hear her baby's heartbeat for the first time.
Cameo role that I played, I was nonetheless part of a precious moment she would probably remember for life.

There is something I've noticed about the nature of Obs & Gynae placement thus far:
it allows you to witness the wonder, the beauty of motherhood.
But it also shows you the blood and gore that comes along with it.

And as much as babies are the most adorable of creatures, 
one cannot help, on this placement, 
but to realize that a baby fits the definition of a parasite quite well:

"An organism which lives in or on another organism (its host) and benefits by deriving nutrients at the other’s expense."

(And by this definition a baby continues to be a parasite even after it leaves the host's body, 
draining the host and her spouse off their physical, emotional and mental vitality as he continues to grow. Sorry Ma 😶)

Anyways what I was trying to get at, Ma,
is that when I was holding the ultrasound device
I thought about you, and 
wondered about that moment when you first heard MY heartbeat;
the heartbeat of that parasite which until today 
has yet to grow up fully and still gives you headaches 😅

Too often we don't appreciate 
the most precious things in life until it's passed us by: 
whether it be a precious moment, like hearing the heartbeat of a baby for the first time,
or a precious person, like the lady who has always loved you unconditionally despite your parasitic nature.

This parasite has got nothing to give you this Mother's Day, Ma
except this message of gratitude 
and a video of an otter and her baby 😅

Love you much, mooch2, assalamualaikum 

(Credits to Norshahkang Shuaib who first showed me this video and thus showed me that sanity is apparently not a prerequisite for postgraduate study)

Friday, March 4, 2016

To Commit

The goalkeeper who runs out of goal,
the person who founds a club,
the man who decides to settle down -

they are wildly different situations with a common thread:
it involves making a decision, and committing to it.

But commitment (by its very nature)
is not without risks:
the risk of failure, 
of heartbreak, 
or plain embarrassment.

It is no surprise why many choose not to commit;
thinking it's the safest choice to make.

But then they do not realize
that the act of not making a choice 
is itself a decision.

So..what to do?
No risk, no rizq.

P.s. Maybe the inability to make a decision is a symptom of an underlying disease: an unwillingness to take responsibility.

P. p. s. there is, though, one relationship in which there is no risk in committing to. The relationship with Allah lah..duhh ✌🏻️

#salamjumaat #imanbarunakup #amsyajanganpressure

Tuesday, March 1, 2016


When those statues around the Kaabah were brought down, I imagine
that it must have been painful for the worshippers of those idols to see.
It must be hard to let go of old habits, old attachments.

But that pain was, ultimately, short-lived.
And that pain was necessary, before 
the inner peace that Islam brought 
could enter their hearts.

It is a similar case, I imagine, for those idols we have in our hearts:
wealth, self, a lover.
But like those statues around the Kaabah they too must be brought down.
It is a pain necessary to achieve inner peace.

And I pray that it too will be a pain short-lived.


Friday, February 26, 2016


If mistakes are necessary to move towards perfection
then so, necessarily, we will never be perfect.

Is that where beauty lies?

"The world breaks everyone and 
afterward many are strong 
in the broken places."
- Ernest Hemmingway

(How can I expect you to be perfect 
when I'm not either?)

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

"The heart is like a bird: 
love at its head and 
its two wings are 
hope and fear"
- Ibn Al-Qayyim

If one finds something difficult to put out of mind while in solat,
maybe you love it more than you love Allah.



Saturday, February 20, 2016

the best position to be in
as the world falls apart around you


Wednesday, February 10, 2016


Inflammation is the body's way of protecting itself;
after a wound is made, inflammation 
clears harmful objects and dead tissue,
and helps the body heal.

Yet with inflammation
there is pain, loss of function
and in a tragic irony, 
too much inflammation can actually damage 
the very body it is meant to protect.

Such is the case with love,
which is but inflammation of the heart:
it is natural, human, and 
in the correct dose, good.

But what a tragic irony it would be 
if love for this world 
takes one away from 
the One who is Most Loving, who
blessed him with the object of love 
in the first place.

"Ya muqallibal quluub..tsabbit qalbi 'ala deenik"


Monday, February 8, 2016

CNY with the Grandkids

It's a yearly tradition which I've been missing for the last few years: 
the Chinese New Year Eve reunion dinner with family and friends. 
A price to pay for living so far from home.

This year was little different:
I didn't have dim sum or shark fin soup at a Chinese restaurant (Taiba pon boleh la..),
and no we didn't do 'yee sang' with the half chicken with rice
nor 'yam seng' with the mint tea,
but this year I had a chance to dine with my cucu2 usrah.

Yes, a sincere da'ie should put hopes of reward for his efforts 
first and foremost from Allah in the hereafter,
but SubhanAllah, sometimes Allah lets us see 
the fruits of dakwah blossom even in this world.
Those fruits are my cucu2 usrah.

Good job, Irfan..I'm impressed! 😉
*muka x impressed* :p

Anyways, from my clan to all of you...
Gong Xi Fa Cai!!! 

With love, 
Kong Kong (atuk) usrah 👲🏻

P.s. special thanks to uncle Wafi for joining us and making the reunion complete!

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Makan tak kenyang,
tidur tak lena,
mandi tak basah..
jangan sampai solat tak khusyuk.
Hehehe.. 😉

(The love story with Allah comes first and always.)


p.s. esok hari isnin. Jgn lupa puasa

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Is not the act of putting hope
in what is not permanent
an act of either
weakness, or
plain stupidity?


Thursday, January 28, 2016

Good Trees

"...a good word is like a good tree...
It produces its fruit all the time...",
reads a line in my favourite book 
(itself a book full of good words).

And how true it is:
words really are our investments;
our words possibly live on 
longer than our physical bodies do.

While on the other hand
"...a bad word is like a bad tree, 
uprooted from the surface of the earth."

How many of our words
are mentioned or written
without thought or reflection?

Forgetting that
a meaningless prose
is but
a scentless rose.

Let's plant good trees :)


#tadabburMoorPark #macaiPreston #imanbarunakup #IBNU

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Jaga Hati


you see, 
your heart has strings.
And pulling on them hurts.

It is the pain of 
disappointment, of
unreached ambitions.
It is the pain of
rejection, of 
unrequited love. 

But why does it have to hurt so?
Thing is, 
it doesn't have to.

The dunya is an ocean 
in which the makhluk -
an infinite number of creatures -
swim around in an infinite number
of aimless directions. 
Tie your heartstrings to the makhluk
and your heart gets ripped apart,

you see, 
your heart has strings.
And pulling on them hurts.

Why not tie instead your heartstrings
to Al-Khaliq - 
the One who created all creatures?
Tie your heartstrings only to Al-Khaliq
and your heart is not ripped apart,
but uplifted.

Tossed around by the waves of the dunya,
it is nonetheless be at peace,
guided always by the One who created it.

You see, 
your heart has strings.
And pulling on them hurts.

Reminder to self
who also has to 
jaga hati.

Nah, lagu nasyid: 😬

Monday, January 18, 2016

Manchester Snow

Like footsteps left
in Manchester snow

is the dunya;

fleeting brushstrokes on
a fleeting canvas.

Sunday, January 10, 2016


Eyes large and haunting..
betraying at the same time both 
and her lack of nutrition.

She is to me Madaya:
that Syrian city
with an Internet connection, 
but no food.

She is to me Madaya:
the child 
who should be getting milk everyday
but instead lives on water mixed with salt.

She is to me Madaya:
for I don't even know her name.