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.

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

To Love and Be Loved

Mohammad Ramtoola ヅ was confused when I asked him how to say in French
the word "lover".

"What do you mean?" he asked back;
"Someone who you love, or someone who loves you?"
For apparently they are two different words.

This highlighted an important fact,
often overlooked:
Love is not a monolithic thing;
there are actually TWO components to it:
to love, and
to be loved.

For most of us, the 'to be loved' part comes easily.
ever since we are born our parents have showered us with love 
we are loved just for the fact that we are us: their children.
And so we grow up not just taking the
food, clothing and shelter they give us 
for granted,
but also love itself as a given.

With time we reach teenagehood
and suddenly the urge to fall in love with someone else -
a "lover" -
creeps into our psyche.
when teenagers say they want to fall in love,
often they still mean they want 'to be loved' - 
more than they actually want 'to love'.

Because although teens 
have the bodies of adults,
they still have the minds of children
when it comes to the matter of love.

And so it takes the passage of even more time 
to mature us into people who truly learn 
that 1st component:
'to love'
(Maybe, even, it takes us to have our own children 
before we truly learn that).

without BOTH components present,
a relationship cannot work properly.
The Malays have a saying, apt to describe
a relationship in which the parties are willing 
only 'to be loved'
but not 'to love':
"tepuk sebelah tangan"
"to clap with one hand" -
a futile act.

It is the same in our relationship with God;
that relationship is a love story,
and so it too has TWO components.

'To be loved' by God is obvious
ever since we are born.
It is He who has given us our parents 
via whom He has given us
food, clothes and shelter.

Question is have we learnt that 1st component of love
in this love story with God?
'To love' him is to worship him exclusively;
to put him above yourself and 
all the attractions of this dunya.

And no, He doesn't need our love 
for He is free from need.

It is us who stand to lose out 
in this world and the next,
attempting vainly to clap with one hand
if we don't learn eventually 
how to love.

Reminder to self.