Saturday, November 21, 2015

i so badly want to write
can I just pass second year already
got exams till dec gahh -.-

Monday, October 12, 2015


So a few weeks ago, I went to the Seekers Hub at Riverwood with Remie and I was blown away by this amazing talk by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani from Canada. It was one of those 'back to basics' talk where you dive into the topic of  your relationship with God, your relationship with human and basically the things that you do everyday and how they actually give a significant impact on your life but you've been oblivious. Well, the timing couldn't be any better. I was not exactly having the time of my life in Med then (now too, actually). Exam dates were constantly at the back of my head, I couldn't sleep at night, every little jigsaw pieces refuses to fall into places, (i feel like a hippo all the time).  There was a few times along the road that I felt like Med is not worth it anymore and the constant desire to drop out was building massively; I was at the brink of breaking down. Started getting cramps at nights and and metallic taste on my jaw. I had to run over to Diba's for stresss-release massages  because air was accumulating in my body cavities giving me the daily migraines..hahahaha. Yeah, it was that bad. (some rant that was, allow me)

So yeah, I had anatomy that morning and it was Friday. I was eager to go home and call it a....week. Although I'm pretty sure I'd come home to yet another 5 hours of laptop staring before bed. So when Remie buzzed asking if I wanna hitch a ride, I did a 30 seconds debate in my head which resulted in  me texting her back telling her how I'd love to take the shotgun.

And as usual, best decision ever.
It was a total escape. I loved it.
They even provided us with handouts this time around and so yay, no phone-scribing.

Ohhh lemme show you Seekers Hub. Photos are taken by Lala during our first visit here few months ago before Ramadan started. We were practically ooohing and aaahing all the time then. And for some reason, Lala had her compact camera with her so here are some shy pictures. (Shy, because after a few snaps she puts it away and we stopped goggling at everything like tourists. I secretly wished she's keep going though and have at least snapped the free cookie and tea/ coffee counter and the bathroom omg the bathroom is amazing you could sleep there)

Seekers Hub, as Remie puts it, has this welcoming vibe that is amazing (i need a new adjective pronto). People from all walks of life go there. There are the locals, the internationals, the PRs, the hijabis, the non-hijabis; people just sort of gather and welcome each other, eager to learn Islam regardless of their physicals. In a way, it teaches me that everyone wants to change. Everyone sorts of crave for the truth coz its fitrah. And everyone has their own struggle getting there. The least we could do is to not stop each other from wanting to fulfill that crave; that burning desire to do something about our condition. The least we could do is to not pass on the stigma that you gotta be this, this, this, you gotta wear this, this, this and you gotta let go  of this and this and this, before you can actually learn Islam.

 I mean, I don't know. I'm a very opinionated person. Coz I dwell on stuff, alright. I dwell on unimportant stuff like how peanut butter would taste with Vegemite or the origin of the word 'banana'. And sometimes when I feel like it, I'd dwell on this sort of stuff. A lot of people would probably slam me hard if I voice this out but I really think that there should be more islamic classes that do not subject the audience to a certain rules or dress-codes or basically any of the 'all-or-nothing' concepts. I know so many people who crave to learn Islam but they are more willing to do it in isolation, which, I would also add, is not wrong or anything. It's just that it would be even more better if they were given the choices to come to the classes without having to strip away everything and come like they're fully cleansed and worthy for a talk. The whole changing yourself for better is a process and community support is absolutely crucial.

I'm beating around the bush- yeah.
My point is,
Islam is for everyone. Not just for the chosen people, who were hand picked and screened through by yet another group of people.

And that's why I loooove Seekers Hub.
They don't judge.
They give us space to think if what we're doing is appropriate.
If what we're wearing is appropriate.
If our minds are alright. If our hearts are alright.
They didn't tell us what to do and leaves us with "because if you don't, you're going to hell".
Or the glares. They didn't give any glares.
Or the hidden sarcastic jokes.
Or the you-are-bound-to-us-this-is-a-lifetime-membership sort of unspoken agreement.
Nah. They had none of that.
They're a non-profit organization.
They give us space.
We get so little of that these days.

So, the guy they put on was Faraz Rabbani. And he was discussing The Complete Counsel. An Explanation of the Hadith: "Religion is Sincere Concern"
I promised Lala I would scribe the notes in another post. But in the mean time, let me introduce you to the guy who talked in one of the most baby speed ever yet it was amazingly engaging, I couldn't stop writing; Faraz Rabbani.
He is a great great lecturer.
I have never loved any lecturer that lags when talking. I get annoyed really really easily when people takes forever to deliver their sentence. 
But I was surprised that I enjoyed his pace.
Probably because the subject was pretty heavy.
It was a lot of self reflection.
And had him talk in a Mufti Menk sort of speed, I would have died trying to keep up.

After the 2 hours, I was completely shocked by how filled the blanks on my notes are.
I had put down his quotes, I've added in my own opinions, I even get to scribe in Malay, channeling my thoughts across in my mother-tongue language.
I had all the time in the world to think while he speaks. That, my friend, is rare.
And I didn't want him to stop.
His pace felt right.
The subject was right.
And Remie and I couldn't stop discusssing about it in the car all the way home.

Here's some links to his biography by Seekers Hub : (even this little article about him is pretty inspiring)
This is his tumblr. He has a tumblr! I am not sleeping tonight.
And this is Seeker's hub podcasts on some of his talks.

I'm gonna listen to this one soon.

The Prayer for Drinking Coffee – The Power of Purpose and High Intentions, by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Look him up, guys! I learnt so much from one session. You would too, I promise!

Thursday, July 30, 2015


Its really good to be back in Sydney.
Don't get me wrong. I love Malaysia, I really do. And the winter holiday this year was perfect with my parents, siblings and close cousins around; and the opportunity to celebrate both Ramadan and Eid in one break- what more can you ask for. But really, my imaan just sort of gets boosted up here in Sydney as compared to when I'm in Malaysia.
I crave for more talks, for more heart-warming, spiritual gatherings.
In Malaysia, I couldn't be bothered.
Really. I wonder if I have split-personality.

Anyway, Lala called me the other day and informed me that Twins of Faith this year is finally happening. It will be on 16th of August. I think it'll just be a one-day event this time. And the theme this year is "Once upon a time in Madinah".
I'm looking forward to an amazing revival of my limited Seerah (History) knowledge.

More information can be found here:
I'll write more when I have time to. 
Been really busy these few weeks.
Med is horrorrrrr

Friday, May 8, 2015


I'm typing this with a minor distraction from Masterchef Australia (which is playing on the side tab) so, pardon all the silly grammar mistakes and crazy sentence structures from here on.

I really love how Allah structures your life in ways that you can never imagine. When I first came to Sydney, I was practically starting fresh. The only person I knew then was Nadira, my ex-roommate (she's getting married this winter hence explains the 'ex'; long story). And it didn't help that I have the middle-child-introvert-at-heart-extrovert-somewhere-deep-down-if-anyone-dare-to-dive-in-and-have-a-look syndrome. Basically, the idea of socializing and making friends at a new place is exhausting as hell.

Which explains why it took me a year to get to know Reime and Nadia. I've met them a couple of times but it's always at some event where there's fifty million other people I know and just have to go and hug. So yes, I don't do huge crowd and small talks. I get zoned out really really quickly and unless the other person contributes as much to the conversation, I can usually sense an awkward cue coming and my soul get ripped to pieces when this happens.

So there I was, playing basketball with Nadia at Moore Park when she asked me if I wanted to join the weekly tafsir session at Lakemba Mosque that very night. It was Easter break and I just got back from Dubbo, so despite my 'introvert'ness, I was still in the mood for some unplanned trips, so I said yes. Wallahi, it was the best decision ever. It was a step into getting to know two beautiful souls, Nadia and Remie, and a great introduction to what now has become my hobby and a great passion; understanding the words of the Quran.

The sessions runs every Tuesday for around 45 minutes, commencing after the Isya' prayer. The speaker is, Allah bless him, Sheikh Abu Bakr Zoud. He's really worth listening to. He has the typical Lebanese-Australian accent that reminds me of my muslim friends at uni. He's pretty young. He doesn't make that many jokes, but that's not an issue. He just takes stuff seriously and he delivers them really really well.

Here's the tafseer series collection from
Syekih Abu Bakr Zoud tafseer collection

His youtube channel (I would personal go here, coz the sessions are numbered)
Syeikh Abu Bakr Zoud youtube channel

His facebook page: (Many of his recent tafseer videos are uploaded here too, but you gotta scroll down to find them.) 
I like his tafseer sessions in particular, because he takes time to go through one verse after another. It took 3 to 4 sessions for us to cover Surah 'Abasa and the explanations are always packed with mind-blowing information. I'm really bad at wording his lengthy lectures but I would highly recommend anyone who is keen to understand the meanings of the verses that we usually read in salah, to have a listen at his podcast. You would be amazed by the relation of one Surah to another  eg: Surah Al-Layl and Surah As-Shams. You'd be surprised that there are so many verses that relates. Rhetorical questions that are answered here and there and all this while, we have just been oblivious. The beauty of the Arabic language and how a simple phrase like 'the sun is wrapped', when translated word by word according to the norm of the word 'wrap' in Arabic, captures the imagery of the Hereafter in such a way that you can never fathom alone.

And it helps that his sessions are tafseer of the Juz Amma, which is helpful considering that most of us would recite verses from this last juz whenever we pray. That's a plus point for us, non-Arabic speakers.

From the way I see it, it's better that we recite verses that struck our hearts when we pray. We get to concentrate better and we'd say our Salams with satisfaction. Imagine that. It's amazing how you were given the opportunity to remind yourself everyday of anything from the Quran. If you read Surah At-Takwir, you are reminded of the hereafter. If you read Surah Al-Asr, you are reminded of  the essence of time. But rather than just knowing the literal meaning, you get to understand the in-depth translation, the messages, the miracle of what He is conveying.

It is not a wonder then that during the glory days of Islam, people are most connected to Quran. It wasn't wealth that makes them amazing. It's their connection with God. Their connection with His book.
Really, if we understand the Quran, we get to learn so much.
And our prayers will make us humble.
It will be more than just a ritual filled with reciting verses after verses of what we memorized since forever.

Friday, March 27, 2015

Article bout her winning the slam poetry thing (Brave new voices) in 2012 

Just watch em you'll love her, you wanna be her.

I just admire loud, confident women.
I admire people who can relay their message in their comfort
Who knows how to word their anger and frustration in melodic rhymes
I admire women who stands up and take the mic
Who speaks clearly and have the fight vibe

I admire people who construct their thoughts
And made it heard

I admire people who knows what they want
Where they're heading

I admire people
of aim
and vision
and strength
and passion

AMAL KASSIR's spoken word poetry are just amazing. She's turning 19 this year and she've already gone far. Her background is Syrian-American, so yeah, with everything that's going on in Syria, it must have bleed bad in her. 

I dont know what's that like. Having your family members there in the time-bomb country. Any minute now you'd be hearing news of death and, guess what, you actually know these people. 

Whenever I hear news about Palestine or Syria or Iraq or any other muslim countries that are on fire, I dont know what to think. I'm usually just bummed by how bad the world has turn into. And the fact that less and less people care these days; its just devastating.

I just got back from volunteering at the hospital and as I sat down to read this morning's paper in the library, I get so frustrated I feel like crying. It may have been the exhausting day (lab practicals from 9 am, peopleee). But I'm betting that the content of the news was what got me.

So, Nentahyu won again. And well, everyone know that whoever's the PM at Israel doesnt really matter coz we're not suppose to count on them for peace. But the way the article was written. It was as if he's just a political figure with no crime.
I thought of all the kids he killed, the children he left orphaned. The many many videos I watched of how buildings were bombed and kids were stuck in between cements and snipers shot babies on their foreheads~
I'm not expecting him to lose
I just. 
I expect the world say something. I expect rage, I guess. For justice is too much to ask for these days - they have 'negotiations' for that.

Syria was bombed for no reason.
If you have oil, you're done man. You're the target.

And let's make it even worse. Lets put fear in people. Now that they're backing up the muslims for the massacres they're facing. Now that they're making rallies and protest against Israel and war in general. Let's make them not wanna get involved.
Lets create, say, ISIS.
Coz Al-Qaeda is old story and well, if we can fool people bout Osama for 10 years, this generation would wanna something fresh so there, one new issue. 

And there it is.
I'd go for lunch with my friends, talk about assignment, life and what's hip and what's not, and when we diverge the conversation to the news, they would awkwardly pat me on the back and congratulate me for not being part of any terrorism of any sort.


It hurts me that my religion is treated this low.
It hurts me that my friends; people who actually go to uni and study and are educated, thinks that ISIS is something that we have no choice but to support.
It hurts me when they couldn't be bothered questioning the bias media
It hurts me when they are oblivious of how this whole islamophobia thing is being played

It hurts me that I'm so weak and all I could do is explain
And my explanation are not great anyway

It hurts me when this pure religion is being constantly made fun of.
Being played.
And it hurts me
that we are so massive in number
And we are this weak

like hell.

Dunno how the Palestinians cope.
Theyve been hurting forever.
And still.

Thursday, December 18, 2014


Syeikh Zahir Mahmood (UK)
I crown this syeikh my favourite speaker for twins of faith this year.
Such energy, every word filled with frustration and emotion.
And solid truth, smacking you right on the face.
Telling you what you have done, why you are such a failure;
why this ummah is such a failure
Facts =(

(parts you can skip starts here)

 I was sitting on the floor, waiting for my cousin to make wudu' at one of the toilets on level 2 PICC when I noticed that the number of people performing prayers at the the non-designated areas have increased since yesterday. Personal praying mats were on every nook, corners and edge of the building, facing the stretch of glass overlooking the lake of Putrajaya and the government administrative buildings.
I smiled alone, thinking that it's interesting how the Malaysians attitude have evolved to become more practical in practicing Islam. This is of course, the usual picture when I'm in Sydney coz we dont have musollas everywhere so come prayer times, it's either under the stairs at the emergency exit, or under any shady tree at any park, any changing rooms at shopping stores that dont blast their stereo, or any public areas that is clean enough for us to perform prayers. (I have my personal favourite spots at Darling Harbour, Hyde Park and at the Uni's library teehee.)

I didnt expect the Malaysians to have adopted such practice as well, given that we've always been taught to pray in a room where its labeled 'surau'. And given the fact that these suraus are almost at any public spaces (from the grand empty ones like the one at Pavilion Bukit Bintang to the overcrowded small rooms at Times Square, Imbi or SOGO, KL), we've been trained to search high and low for a designated place to perform salah.

But alhamdulillah, looking at the shift of mentality that has taken place here in my beloved Malaysia,
we are definitely heading somewhere

Anyway, my cousin really did took a while (yeah with the number of people wearing pashminas and shawls dominating the mirrors at the bathrooms, I can only imagine the queue), I got bored, so I decided to rummage through her handbag looking for interesting things. And when I was done with her make-up bags, I played around with my purse, amazed by the amount of junks I've managed to stashed in there. Few minutes later, when I was halfway done to examining the details of the purse to death, my cousin came out and we headed to make our prayers. We didnt bring praying mats so I took out the many blank A4 papers which among them are my notes from the talks. There, this feels just like Sydney.

It wasn't until we wanted to get back to the main hall did I realize that my purse wasn't in the bag. It must have fallen somewhere. So I panicked, rushed down to the 'lost and found' counter where two volunteers claimed that no one has brought it over just yet. I felt like crying, thinking of the amount of trouble I'm gonna have to go through to lodge a report for my IC and driving license (an image of me having to retake the JPJ driving test zapped through and I frowned at that thought; they cant make me take the test twice, can they?) 

And as if it couldnt get any worse, as I took out a new piece of paper to jot down the interesting points one the syeikhs was pressing about, I realized the previous notes I took- they've gone too.
I was gobsmacked.


I was so dumbfounded that I couldnt concentrate and with the frustration enveloping my thoughts (words getting fancy here, alert!), I crossed my arms and decided not to take notes. I was rebelling for no reason. 

Thank God they were just raising funds so eventhough Syeikh Aala was chipping in bits of stories of the companions here and there, my distracted state couldnt have come at a better time. It was amazing though, to see how rich the Muslims are. They pledged for a million (i think), breaking it into bits and people started to raise their hands for the amount they wanted to donate (one man donated RM 100,000!).
Money, really, isnt always the root of evil.

But where the hell was my purse?!
And my notes- my beautiful notes. =(
The only bit I got to cover was the last session where I sensibly decided to record things the syeikh said.
I'm going to have to ask my friends who went to the conference if I want to blog about the rest of the talks in detail~

(and resumes here)

The final speaker for the conference was this guy; SYEIKH ZAHIR MAHMOOD and his topic was 'The Final Hour'. The Final Hour is of course, one of the element of the 'World of the unseen' that we as Muslims, should have strong belief in.
Before I knew it, I was jotting down his points.
Forgotten about the purse; at least for a while~

Syeikh Zahir Mahmood is a UK born scholar, who is an instructor at the As-Suffa Institute, Birmingham. What I personally like about him is that he's pretty daring. He told us of his experience of being invited to Pakistan, where he was to give talks to a bunch of rich kids and he immediately presses on the subject of wealth and double standards. 
That takes a lot of gut; to rub it on people's face like that.

I mean often times we listen to lectures, we'd be happy to hear the fault of some others, like if they mention youth these days are clubbing and drinking alcohol, we'd go like, "Yep I agree a hundred percent, that is bad."

Syeikh Zahir Mahmood here, he sorta knows his audience. So, every points he made during his talk was directed to us, mentioning every small and huge sins that we overlook and how we think it's not a big deal.
His energy was amazing.
His words were like that of a father, being mad at his children.
I felt like I was being scolded for a good reason.
And I wanted more of it.

There wasn't one time where he comforted us with words like "It's okay. We can all change slowly"
He was more like "Look at what we've done. Look at the ummah. Look! You look at poor people and you think they deserve it? Who gave you wealth?!"

I was surprised actually. I thought I'd like funny talks more. Turns out I prefer this sort of bullet-to-your-hearts sessions.

You can download some of his talks here. They're from events and courses by As-Suffa Institute.
Just right click and Save As =)
I'm currently eager to finish this one called 'Are you a Loser?'

So here's some of the points from the talk. 
Syeikh Zahir Mahmood mentioned that most of us would probably relate that the final hour would be on the day of judgement. We however, fail to remember that our Qiyamah would start on the day we die. 
When we're buried seven feet in the ground, our Qiyamah would be reflected upon us. If it's good, then things are gonna be easy on afterwards. And if it's bad, chances are, it's gonna get worse once we're resurrected nauzhubillahiminzalik.

After we die, we'd probably ask Allah, why didn't He show us signs?
When in fact, the signs are always there. We overlooked them.
The news of relatives, friends, acquaintances passing away, the wrinkles on our forehead, our birthdays, the oppression on the Muslim countries around the world, the earthquakes, the flood, the landslides.
These are all signs.
And we choose to see it with a blind eye, not associating it with His calls for us to turn back to him after we've swayed for so long.
We share a noble status on facebook, and we continue to sin.
We hoped for people to change, but we denied our own responsibilities.

The believers are people of action. They don't just sit looking at the problems of the ummah, becoming armchair critiques; they actually do something. And they have a focus. What is their purpose of life? Where are they gonna channel their wealth? How will they help Islam?
These were the sort of questions that swarmed in the minds of the people during the glory days of Islam. They put Allah before anything and everything, and they managed to conquer every aspects of life there on. The education, the wealth, the power. Everything for the sake of Allah, the priority of every action.
Because come death, the only thing that you're gonna bring from to dunya to the ground with you, would be your kafan (the white piece of cloth that envelopes your body).

"And I swear by Allah, your kafan won't have pockets"
-Syeikh Zahir Mahmood-

On the day of judgement, it would be so scary that every man is for himself. All those Hollywood movies portraying the supposed imagery of the Judgment Day do not come close to even 1% of the horror it would be on that day. There won't be families hugging each other, looking for shelters. Even women breastfeeding, they'd forget about their babies. (Yes, if its gonna be that illogical, then it should be extremely scary). One that the human mind is incapable of picturing.
Septillion stars are gonna fall from the sky.
The mountains breaking into pieces...

And no soul can escape after that.
Be them alive, or be them dead.
For even if you're dead, the Angel Israfil is going to blow the horn for the second time, and you shall be resurrected too with the others.

Think about it. Every one you know in the history books is going to be there.
Even Napoleon
Even The Beatles
Even Abraham Lincoln
Even Adolf Hitler
Even our beloved Umar Abd Aziz.
Umar Al-Khattab
The Prophets
Even Pharoah

They're all gonna be there.We're all be gonna be there

Allahuakbar. No matter how great or how low we were during our lives, we're all gonna stand there on the day of Judgement counting our deeds, waiting for our turn to receive our books.

So the big question is, have we prepared ourselves for the final hour?
Or are we willing to compromise our Barzakh, Mahsyar, Siraat, Hisab, Mizan and Jannah.
For this temporary,single entity, dunya~


They called later that night and told me that someone turned in my purse and I have to pick it up at the main office at Damansara.
Alhamdulillah. Phewww.

Sunday, December 14, 2014


Great line up this year, we have:
Sheikh Tawfique Chowdry
Sheikh Alaa Elsayed
Sheikh Yahya Ibrahim
Sheikh Tariq Appleby
Sheikh Daood Butt
Imam Karim AbuZaid
Sheikh Abu Abdissalam
Sheikh Zahir Mahmood <done>
Sheikh Muiz Bukhary
Muslim Belal
Faisal Salah

I love them all! May Allah bless them, give them the highest jannah and put them among those that he loves.
And may He let us follow their footsteps, aminn =)

 Last time, I attended Twins of Faith in Sydney, there was so many things I wanted to share with the world and then I came home, realized that I had 4 days before my finals and so I said to myself, I'll do it after the exam.
And of course I never did.

The notes I took remains notes, which, is still there in the phone. But it remains there.So what im gonna do is that imma combine this weekend's talk (Twins of Faith 2014 Malaysia: World of the unseen) and the one I went to in February (Twins of faith 2014 Sydney: The Sunnah the Better) and blog about them both coordinating it by speakers. 

I remember back when I was 18 and Afikah Aiman told me all about the conference, I was like, well, I dont see the significance of going to such event when you can just go on youtube and select the lectures of your favourite scholars. I mean, I could listen to Nouman Ali Khan all day long for free really. No tickets. No gas money gone. No need to dress up, I can watch it at home over a bowl of popcorn, on my bed, in pyjamas.

But alhamdulillah 3 years later, He knocked some sense into me and I somehow managed to force my cousin to get me two tickets so I could drag my mum along. And wallahi, that simple phone call I made from Kingsford was the best decision to wrap up 2014 (well we technically still have 15 days to go but that line I just typed is pretty cool I dont want to cross it).

The thing about going to such conference is, you get pretty constantly pumped up by the great great vibe around you. Everyone is so eager to learn, to donate, to get involved and you just felt there is a great ummah spirit that we Muslims have that we sadly dont convey as much at other times. Outside of nice conferences like this, we're very much strangers and we don't seem to want to know one another. But deep down, we long for unity of the ummah. We want to see men in jubahs and women in proper clothing, in hijab, talking about Islam, talking about the greatness of Allah.
I didn't realize that before but-
I kinda like that.
It's a weird world we live in today where if you talk about Islam, you'd be labeled pious or extreme or somewhat rigid.

Its sad. And true.

And come conference like this, you're free to voice out your opinion. You can quote these scholars and share it with your friends and it becomes a topic that isn't awkward because you're not the only one who went.

And that is a great stepping stone to a lot of things.

My mum also pointed out something nice to ponder about from the two-day conference.

It's nice to sit down with everyone.
The volunteers are made of everyone.
The speakers are everyone.
The audience is everyone

I think her point is, these days, there's way too many islamic organisations with different names and each one claiming that they are better than the other, their vision are better, somewhat stronger, somewhat more substantiated.

Conferences like this, organised by an independant body that has no association with these unseen politics between the many islamic organisations in Malaysia, well, conferences like this, they're really a blessing.

We need more of it.
You've done a great job, Mercy Mission!
Imma blog about the content next according to the speakers so stay tuned!