Your Spouse is Your Mirror

Bismillahirrahmaanirraheem…

Assalamu’alaikum Wr. Wbt.

Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said, “The believers who show the most perfect Faith are those who have the best behaviour, and the best of you are those who are the best to their wives”. [At-Tirmidhi]

It is not uncommon now to hear about couples divorcing when in fact their marriage has been less than five years. A recent survey made by Berita Harian, the main reason for divorce is unfaithfulness of spouse. If you can understand Malay language, you may read the full article here.

For that reason, I have decided to compile all marriage tips that I’ve posted sometimes back on FB. Although I may not be the best person to advice as my marriage has not even reached four years, I sincerely hope that these tips will come in handy for any married couples, insyaAllah. Most importantly, it serves as a reminder for me too.

I name this post as ‘Your Spouse is Your Mirror’ because I hold on dear to the hadith above. If you treat your wife good, then InsyaAllah she will reciprocate with good treatment and vice versa. So if you feel your marriage is not bringing peace into your home, check on yourself first and work things out. However, I am not stereotyping to all marriages because in this world they are some exceptions. I know of people who are super good to their spouse yet their spouse reciprocates with bad treatment.

The list is quite comprehensive but I hope these tips will be beneficial, insyaAllah. There’s no order because I copy paste it according to the time line I’ve posted on FB.

Happy Marriage #01

Never share your marital problems with anyone. Not your best friend or even your parents, what more on social media. They will only hear a one-sided story and for sure, because you’re close to them, they will support you without knowing the true story.

Only share the story with someone you trust, who can give good advice, if your intention is to improve on the relationship. Otherwise, please solve marital challenges together, as wise adults, in a discreet manner.

Happy Marriage #02


Marry for Allah SWT. If you’re involved in a relationship before marriage with your spouse, make sincere taubah together!
Change your intention for marriage, and InsyaAllah your marriage will be filled with barakah. Make Allah as the center of your life and marriage, and you’ll be able to taste genuine and true happiness. The closer you and your spouse are to Allah, the closer you’ll be with your spouse! In the end, don’t you want to reunite with your spouse in Jannah?

Happy Marriage #03

Unless you’re working night shift, never never never let your spouse sleeps alone. Yes, you may come back from work feeling exhausted and all you want to do is to have your own me-time. However, one should understand that me-time has now turn to we-time once one accepted one’s spouse into one’s life.

No, it’s not wrong to have a me-time once in a while. It’s only wrong when you demand your me-time every single day. You and your spouse may be working from day to evening and the only time you have a proper opportunity to spend time with each other is during bedtime.

Let go of all urges to do anything else. Do not bring any gadget, get your spouse and yourself on the bed and enjoy some we-time. Intimacy doesn’t have to mean sex. Having a heart-to-heart talk is also one of the ways to get intimate with each other.

Oh. First thing when you wake up in the morning, do not search for your phone. Instead wake your spouse up if you’ve to, greet him/her and kiss him/her on the forehead. You start and end the day with your spouse.

Happy Marriage #04

Always be the best version of yourself when you’re with your spouse. Often times people became too complacent in relationship because they see their spouse everyday and hence they don’t find the need to impress their other half. In fact, unknowingly most of the time we treat others who we rarely meet way better than we do to our spouse.

For something to last, we have to put in great effort. You wouldn’t say “I love my bag so much” but instead you’ll just throw it at a corner without handling it with care. Same goes to our spouse. Extra tender loving care have to be given to our spouse cz firstly, unlike the bag, they have feelings and secondly, we choose to live with them everyday hence they get affected so easily with our actions towards them.

Happy Marriage #05

Many couples have huge problem when it comes to communicating with each other. One of the reasons is because of the personality of the person itself – prefer to keep quiet and bottle everything up inside and treat as if nothing happens.

For a marriage to remain healthy and happy, there must be a form of communication between the spouse. Texting or writing letters may be a way of solving problems, however, nothing beats solving problems at hand, face to face.

When you communicate face to face, your spouse knows exactly your tone, your facial expression and your body language. This cannot be achieved from texting or writing letter. Honestly, it will take time to get used to talking, especially if you’re the type who rather bottle up your feelings.

Find the right time to talk. Always remain calm and always bear in mind that your objective is to find a solution to the problem together. If it’s a mistake that you’ve made, admit it with an open heart and try to improve. If it’s your spouse’s mistake, advise your spouse nicely. Do not have the intention of hurting your spouse just because your spouse has hurt you. At the end of it, say sorry even if you’ve not done any wrong because in the process of giving advise you may hurt you spouse unintentionally.

When you improve yourself, you’ll improve your marriage.

Happy Marriage #06

Never talk bad about your in-laws. Remember that your in-laws are your spouse’s family. What will you feel if your spouse talks bad about your own mum, dad or family as a whole?

Even if you’ve to let our your unhappiness towards your in-laws to your spouse, put it in a way that it won’t create any tension between your spouse and his/her family, or between you yourself and your spouse. Be gracious – pick the right words and tone.

Happy Marriage #07

Unleash your inner child when you’re with your spouse. Do not be ashamed to act silly/cute in front of your spouse because your spouse will be entertained (given you do it at the right time)! It would be easier to be playful if you marry at a young age.

PS: Never act cute in front of anyone else other than your spouse because, you know, others won’t appreciate that sight so much. They might just vomit on the spot.

Happy Marriage #08

Do not contact the opposite gender without any legit reason, what more if that person(s) used to be the most important person at one point of time in your life.

This may sound insecure, but once you got married to your spouse, you shouldn’t even leave a comment at that person’s FB postings. That’s basic respect for your spouse. If you’re genuinely okay with your spouse doing the same to you, then it’s up to the both of you.

Jealousy can really hurt so badly. Contacting the opposite gender is like an indirect way of telling your spouse that he/she can’t fulfil that part of attention that you need (even if you don’t mean it). So instead of seeking for love/entertainment from someone else, give your spouse a chance to show you that he/she is worth it.

After all, one of the most important essences of marriage is loyalty.

Oh, if you need to deal with the opposite gender, make the message short and sharp. Do not make room for the receiver to think that he/she has a chance with you. Because, you know, somehow some people find a married person more attractive than a single person.

Happy Marriage #09

A lot of people can solve the world’s problem and anything in it, but back at home, their own family problems are neglected. Many can listen attentively to outsiders’ rants but when their spouse rants, they turn berserk.

Take a step back and focus on your marriage for once. Listen carefully to your spouse when he/she is laying down the problems that are happening in the marriage. Just like how you solve outsiders’ problems calmly and as wise as possible, you should do even much more when dealing with your spouse.

Be a genuinely happy person inside and outside your house!

Happy Marriage #10

As far as possible, never end your day with feelings of unhappiness and anger towards your spouse even how huge your argument might be in the day.

Most of the time, argument in a marriage happens not because one is wrong while the other is right. It is inevitable misunderstanding that happens because both party love each other so much, they feel a need to voice out.

Trust me, in an argument, both party will feel hurt. Since no one is in the wrong per se, say sorry for whatever that has happened and promise that the situation will improve. Saying sorry doesn’t mean you lose in the argument, you apologise for hurting your spouse knowingly or unknowingly. And yes, if your spouse apologised, you apologise too for hurting him/her.

Discuss how to make things better after that and your marriage will get stronger. Arguments are not meant for hating but it’s meant to make you understand each other better.

Happy Marriage #11

Never leave a day without saying “I love you” or “I miss you” genuinely to your spouse.

A trick if your spouse is embarassed to reply you: 
If your spouse just smiles sheepishly without replying, ask him/her
“you don’t love me too..? *insert act cute sad face*”.
Your spouse will surely feel obligated to reply although he/she may be super shy to say those words because he/she loves you that much too!

If you want to take all this act cute thingy to a whole new cringy level, after your spouse says “I love you too”, you reply “I love you too, three, for-ever (four ever)!” Hehe… Omg. I’m cringing just by typing this out. Haha.

And yes, please do it when no one else is around you and your spouse.
Happy Marriage #12

Always consult with your spouse in any matter – whether minute or life-changing decision. Listen, understand and provide/accept sincere advice when needed/given. At times, your spouse knows you better than you know yourself.

Make your spouse feel important. After all, whatever decision you’re going to make, it might affect your spouse in one way or another. Your spouse is your life companion.

Happy Marriage #13

Always “renew” your marriage by reading books meant for newly married couples. These kind of books will allow you to gauge how far you’ve “performed” in your marriage. It will help you to remain on track cz it serves as a constant reminder as to why you first marry the person you’re with now. Plus, even though if you first marry for the wrong reason, these books will enable you set your intention right again, InsyaAllah.

Happy Marriage #14

Do not ask unnecessary questions that will only hurt you and can shake your relationship with your spouse. Especially questions pertaining the past, the opposite gender, etc.

I’ve seen people getting mad at their partner when they themselves asked question like “do you think xxx is pretty?”. At times even when your partner says no, you’ll keep provoking until your partner says “okay la. She looks a bit pretty” and you spoil your own day.

I know at times we just want to test our own spouse cz we want to feel worthy. But hey, the moment your spouse chose you to be their lifetime companion, it already shows you’re the most worthy in their eyes, mind and heart, right? Edit😉

That’s why we need to keep praising, saying good stuff to our spouse so that he/she knows we are always noticing their good side!

WAllahualam.


On a side note, if you have not already done so, I’d like to welcome you to subscribe to my Friday Letters where I will be emailing you my own personal reflection which I feel most relevant and insyaAllah beneficial to be shared that week! I will be emailing my very first letter tomorrow (INSYAALLAH!) after facing lots of problem with the software! To subscribe, don’t be shy and please click here. 🙂


Alone but not lonely

Bismillahirrahmaanirraheem…

Assalamualaikum Wr. Wbt.

The past week I have been quite a loner because firstly, my very good friend has just graduated and secondly, it is the short semester and the campus is kind of a ghost town. So for two months or so, I will be rather alone because I end all classes before lunch hour and I don’t really have anyone to hang out with. Okay, at least for four days I will be alone and I’ll be back in Singapore for three days. #weekendhousewife

Alhamdulillah I am quite satisfied with the way things are. I may be all by myself, but I am never bored. However, there are times where I found myself doing unproductive things like watching unbeneficial videos on YouTube. I am still trying to cut down on that.

You see, when you are all alone, you will have that strong tendency to do things that are not beneficial because no one is looking at you. I mean, it is normal to be that way because we are humans and we forget. However, it is worrying when we get too caught up with matters that are not beneficial till we are unable to realise the wrong in it. I understand it is difficult. It is not easy to break the habit that we have formed for so long. Break it slowly. One at a time. Like our mothers always say “little little long long become hill” HAHA. It sounds so bad in English. Sikit sikit lama-lama jadi bukit. We also have to keep reminding ourselves that no human is seeing us, but Allah SWT does. He takes account of everything that we do publicly and privately. We will also be asked what we do with the time that has granted to us in this dunya. All of us want to have a good response when answering Him, don’t we?

Somewhere I’ve never been before and I was shocked that this was my destination

Anyways.. The past week I filled my time by going out of campus alone. Of cz I did not just wander around without any purpose. My husband would be maddd. Hehe. I have made a point that I will have to accomplish something everyday. Especially with the upcoming clothing line that I will introduce soon (insyaAllah!), I have been quite busy getting stuff from places that I have not been to. Alhamdulillah for Grab and its constant promo codes. Haha. Anyway, I would not lie that taking a Grabcar in Malaysia is not scary. At times I do get scared especially when I am going to places I have not been to. It’s scary when drivers had to drive at kampong areas because that’s when my mind gets wild. However, I will always make it a point to recite this simple du’a every time I go out from my room:

 بِسْمِ اللَّهِ تَوَكَّلْتُ عَلَى اللَّهِ لاَ حَوْلَ وَلاَ قُوَّةَ إِلاَّ بِاللَّهِ

Bismillahi tawakaltu ‘alallahi, laa hawla wa laa quwata illa billah

In the name of Allah, I trust in Allah; there is no might and no power but in Allah

The hadith to the the du’a:

Narrated Anas ibn Malik:

The Prophet (ﷺ) said: When a man goes out of his house and says: “In the name of Allah, I trust in Allah; there is no might and no power but in Allah,” the following will be said to him at that time: “You are guided, defended and protected.” The devils will go far from him and another devil will say: How can you deal with a man who has been guided, defended and protected?

(Sunan Abi Dawud)

SubhanAllah. Such a simple yet powerful du’a that almost every Muslim knows yet most of time we do not recite it with conviction. I used to recite it as a habit but I began reciting it with conviction ever since I have to travel alone. However, why do we wait till we are alone then we start reciting it meaningfully? Let’s start now, and have trust in Allah that there is not power greater than Him. So yes, this du’a has been my shield. I will feel calm and safe when I reminded myself that I have recited this du’a when I leave my room.

Nonetheless, I was pleasantly surprised by this place! Alhamdulillah!

Besides going out, I am also trying to excite my intellect again by reading books (all thanks to my husband who makes sure that I reaaad). I do not have the habit or interest in reading but I know that there is no other way for me to gain knowledge besides going for talks/lectures and reading. I know that the only way for me to get resources is by reading. When we want to write our own article, we have to cite from other articles. Hence, if I want my articles to be beneficial, I will have to provide evidences that of course requires reading. So there is no way that I could escape reading, hence I shall tryyy to embrace reading. I constantly reminded myself that I need to read in the name of my Lord. I believe my Lord (Allah) is the truth. Therefore, I need to read with the sole purpose of seeking for the truth.

So yeah! I believe that having a ‘me time’ is important. However, ‘me time’ doesn’t just mean shopping, scrolling mindlessly on FB, IG, Twitter, watching online movies. Fill your ‘me time’ with things that are beneficial. Besides reading, you can also go to the beach and do some contemplation. Contemplation is really important for every Muslim to perform and that’s why there are so many contemplative verses in the Qur’an. Besides relaxing our mind, contemplation will also enable us to reflect on our actions and improve ourselves, insyaAllah.

Some people who might always be surrounded by other people yet they feel lonely. All in all, do remember that in whatever circumstances, we are never alone and we should never feel lonely because Allah SWT is closer to us than our jugular vein.

On a separate note, I have announced on my recent blog post that I will be emailing Friday letters last week. However, when I wanted to send my letter, there was some problem and the website disabled me from sending any emails. Huhu. I hope the issue will be resolved soon so that I will be able to send it this week, insyaAllah. Even when I posted subscription form on my FB, some emails did not appear on my mailing list. I am sorry if you are accidentally not in the list. If you subscribed to my Friday letters on FB, do subscribe here again k. If there is a repetition of your email in the list, I will delete one out. I am also welcoming you who are reading this to subscribe to my Friday letters here!

Wallahualam.

Reasons Why I left + Special Announcement!

Bismillahirrahmaaniirraheem…

Assalamualaikum Wr. Wbt.

Okayyy, hold your horses! This post is not a pregnancy announcement rather it’s something that I have been wanting to do for a long time and only now I have the time to do it, Alhamdulillah. But that aside first. Anywayyy… SubhanAllah. It’s been awhile since I last posted something personal, isn’t it? This post is particularly about the reason why I left social media for a long time. I know many, if not all, do not realize that I have deleted my instagram account a couple of months ago. As for FB, I had serious contemplation to close it down, but I guess I won’t. However, I have not been active in posting statuses except for sharing others’ posts.

February was the beginning of my new semester. Alhamdulillah the semester has ended and my result was unexpectedly beyond expectation; especially with the new system that my university has just implemented. I got sick a number of times that semester and the energy to attend classes was really the level of A’udzubillahiminas-syaitanirrajeemmm… Others became sick because they did a load of things, as for me, I got sick by the thoughts of having to do tonnes of things. Huhu. Please make du’a for me in your prayers that I will be able to do better for the next few semesters I am left with.

Being busy and overwhelmed with school work was just a minor reason to why I left social media. The real reason why I left would be because of a lecturer whom I have great respect for and I had the amazing opportunity to be in her class for the past one semester. Not many students want to register for her class because she is known to be super critical and have no mercy for students who do not want to speak in class. There were a couple of times where students were asked to leave the class if the student(s) do not have any questions for her. The lecturer always says that it’s a crime/sin for a Muslim to be stupid. Which I myself feel that it is the harsh truth. Allah SWT has given us the capacity to think and contemplate. Even in the Qur’an there are many verses which Allah SWT commands us to ponder upon. However, little do we take heed.

So yes. I am trying to be a smart and critical Muslim who do not just take things at face value. There are more than just what our simple mind would want to comprehend. I do not wish to be a cognitive miser; one who avoids taking effort to think beyond than what is required. These are also the very reasons why people go to the extremes in comprehending Islam. On one extreme, there is a group of people who take things literally from the Qur’an which resulted in violence and extremism. While on the other hand, there is a group of people who are too loose in their interpretations of the religion. We need to be in the middle of the two extremes and for that to happen, we need to be knowledgeable and sincere.

Okay. I think I am still not answering the reason why I left. Sorry for digressing too much. But I feel that this is important especially in today’s context where the truth is scarily mashed up with falsehood. I am leaving a du’a that we all should recite after every prayer by Saiyyidina ‘Umar ibn al-Khattab r.a.:

اللهم ارنا الحق حقاً وارزقنا اتباعه وارنا الباطل باطلا وارزقنا اجتنابه

Allahumma arinal haqqa haqqaw warzuqnat tiba’ah, wa arinal batila batilaw warzuqnaj tinabah

Translation: O Allah! show us the truth as true, and inspire us to follow it. Show us falsehood as falsehood, and inspire us to abstain from it.

Back to the reason… So, this lecturer of mine, she was frustrated at the condition of our ummah right now. There are so many things that we need to do yet women are always seen on the phone, while the men are always with their big toys (she’s refering to those who are constantly competing who can build the tallest building). What hits me the most was when she said, “The Ummah is dying! … You’re here as khalifah fil ard (loosely translated as manager on earth), not to look pretty!” SubhanAllah. That’s when I realize, I want to remove any distraction from my path to better myself so that I can help my community in the best of my capability, insyaAllah. Again, please make du’a for me. However, I am not saying that we should not be beautiful for Allah’s sake; especially in our acts of worship. That is what ihsan is about – to attain perfection. What I am referring to is excessive time wastage in trying to look pretty till it distracts us from doing better things.

Social-Media-Addiction (1)

So here was my thought process. I wish to remove as much distractions as possible. You know, when you start to press on any social media apps, you will somehow get hooked and waste your life away scrolling without any purpose. At times, the heart becomes diseased when you tend to compare yourself with some instagram celebrity or people who seemingly did a lot of amazing things with their lives. At the same time, I do not wish to distract others with my posts that were becoming more and more irrelevant to becoming a better person. I need to be able to fulfill my ultimate purpose of being in this world. I salute those who are able to fulfill their purpose with all these social media platforms, as for me, I need to be thoroughly selective. I need to make sure the social media I am using is assisting me to do greater things to achieve the objective of providing goodness to others. I need. So here’s the special announcement I was referring to.

I am deeply inspired by Aida Azlin, founder of The Shawl Label. I have been subscribing to her Tuesday love letters, listening to her podcasts, signing up for her classes and watching her videos. Aida, if you are reading this, I’m sorry if I appear as a stalker. Haha. But that shows how much she has been inspiring me. She is the most productive person I have ever seen in my entire life. She will always be pioneering something new, something that you never thought possible. If you guys have no clue who she is, you should totally check out her work here.

I could relate so much to Aida because she’s all out in championing sisterhood and she is able to integrate and translate everything beautifully into her crafts. I would also love to create a strong community, both men and women, with my Friday letters which I will start emailing this Friday (7/7/2017), insyaAllah. Also, you might remember that I used to run Mai Black Jubah with a dear friend. Unfortunately Mai Black Jubah has ceased to exist but Alhamdulillah and insyaAllah something even better awaits! I will be officially launching this new line in one of the Friday letters, insyaAllah! So excited, SubhanAllah! For the third time, please make du’a that everything runs smoothly!

I promise the letter will not be as long as my usual blog post! Hehe. Let’s be a part of one community, shall we? Click here if you’re in!

Wallahualam.

Assist a Sick & Distressed Mother with 4 Children

Bismillaahirrahmaanirraheem…

Assalamualaikum Wrt Wbt,

This post is a special one because it will be about the campaign that I am currently running and will end on 28th June. InsyaAllah I’ll share later why I chose 28th June specifically. Anyway, you might have seen this campaign either from FB or WA, and Alhamdulillah there are many who share the word around. May Allah reward all of you who shared and those who donated generously multi-fold times! Alhamdulillah the amount as of now that we have gathered is a total of S$3002.00 ($1902.00 from gogetfund website and $1100 from my husband’s Monday night class and also personal transfer). MasyaAllah, can you imagine all that within just four days? SubhanAllah! I am extremely impressed with the strength of our ummah. So for those who have no clue what the campaign is all about, allow me to share with you and I hope that even if you are not able to help financially, you will help by spreading the message around, insyaAllah. Okay so here goes…

Currently I am campaigning for a sick and distressed mother with four children (16, 13, 12, and 4) to help her clear her debts and also to help her live by for a few months, insyaAllah. I have known this beautiful soul since 2015 and I have visited her place and went out with her and her children a number of times. So insyaAllah all donations are being put to good use. Although I have already written some background story about her on the gogetfund website, but I’ll still share it again and insyaAllah an extended version of it.

If anyone who used to read an FB post from two years ago where I mentioned I know of a husband and wife who are tattooed and have turned over a new leaf. However, because of the stigma that still remains in our community, tattooed Muslims are looked down upon and they may still face criticisms especially from the older generation. Ignorant yet popular remarks such as “If you do not remove your tattoos, everything you do is not valid. Allah will not accept your prayers and obligatory baths (mandi hadas)”, will not do anything good to the tattooed Muslim, but instead it will only bring detriments to the person. Because of this, many tattooed Muslims avoid praying at the mosque and will only pray at their own safe space. Unfortunate for this mother, she did not receive enough support when she wanted to be a better Muslimah, together with the criticisms because of her tattoos which she is not even in control of anymore, she went back to her old ways a number of times. However, she came to a realisation that Allah SWT has given her everything yet she is not grateful. That’s when she also starts to cover her aurah properly and wears the niqab too. She even wears gloves to cover the tattoos on her hands.

She lives in a rented house with no rooms together with her children. Her husband has not been coming home regularly since February because they had a big fight when she keeps prompting her husband that she needs to go to work. Her husband who does not have a stable job and at times does not even work for a few months,  refuses to allow her to work as he wants her to take care of the youngest child. As there is no income, her only alternative is to borrow money from others. She also does try to get help from different organisations and occasionally meets the MP for help. Back to her husband, even when he comes back home to meet the children, he occasionally gives her $50 which is of course insufficient for her and the children. To make things worse, her eldest child who was under probation because of juvenile offence, did not come back home for almost three weeks now. She reported her missing child to the police and now the child is wanted by the police. You may ask me why is it I include this part about her child wanted by the police, this is to show that she is in extreme distress and became ill thinking about her child.

After her husband left, she began looking for a job. She got a job at PSA as a cleaner and on the first day of work, she blacked out. She has to quit because she is unwell to work. Her health is deteriorating as she is diagnosed with diabetes, high cholesterol and also heart diseases. I would assume this is mainly because of food consumption. She could not afford to get proper food for her family and hence has to resort to low quality food like instant noodles.

Alhamdulillah a kind sister who is in a similar situation actually called me and she told me a few actions that this mother of four could take. Firstly, she can get free medical check up and Alhamdulillah she did get 6 months full subsidy of her appointments. Secondly, she can also get a letter from the doctor mentioning that she is unfit to work. InsyaAllah this Friday she has an appointment and she will try to get the letter. With this letter, she can go to Community Development Council (CDC) to request for help so that she is able to get at least a stable amount of income every month for her to support the family. She can also try to go to HDB to waive off her upcoming rents. As of now, she has to pay $294.10 before 31st May, else HDB will take actions against her. Alhamdulillah a kind soul has actually already paid for her house rent yesterday, and the kind soul also gave extra for her to pay off the next two months’ rent. Thirdly, the sister said that since she will be receiving the donations, she should change her food pattern and avoid instant noodle, white sugar and canned food. Find a healthier alternative such as brown sugar or the special kind of sugar for diabetic patient. InsyaAllah if we have the intention to safeguard the amanah in the form of body that Allah has given us, Allah will provide us ways to attain it.

Yesterday I asked if she has any debt with hospitals, and she said that she used to “run away”  from paying hospital bills for her children because she can’t afford it. So when I asked how much does it sum up to, she said she threw all the bills aways because she never thought anyone would want to help her. Alhamdulillah with all your efforts, it’s now clear that Allah will never leave His slaves at any cost. We just require patience.

The overview amount of money required can be seen at the gogetfund website. But total we’re campaigning for is a total of $3500. I’ve also open the fund to be till 28th June (third day of Eid ul-fitri) instead of closing it when we’ve reached the amount. The reason behind this is because the amount $3500 is what she needs. I hope that we could at least give her and her children a pleasant and memorable festival where they can get new clothes and also eat good food during that festive day. Unfortunately she does not have good relations with many relatives because they see her and her children as a burden.

Lastly I would like to inform all who have interest in this campaign on the actions she will be taking in order to sustain her family. Besides what has been mentioned, she will also try to get funds from MUIS and school pocket money scheme. She did apply before and she will be reapplying it again. Some kind souls have told her to apply at AMP, PPIS and 4PM. InsyaAllah she will look into it too.

I’d also like to ask if anyone can provide free consultation for her to see what are the options she has with regards to her husband. She is stuck in a sticky situation where she still loves her husband but she doesn’t know what to do with the situation.

With this, I end with a huge thank you to all who have come forward to help in terms of donation, sharing the campaign and also free helpful advice. May Allah SWT reward all of you abundantly and may He elevate all of your status in Jannah, insyaAllah.

You may click on the link to donate and get updates on this campaign:

https://gogetfunding.com/assist-a-sick-distress-mother-with-4-children/
Wassalam.

Allahualam.

Ethics of Being A Group Member

Bismillahirrahmaanirraheem…

Assalamualaikum Wrt. Wbt.

Alhammdulillah it is a new start to the year and the semester. Time flies really fast and I am now in my year 3. I am at the halfway mark and I wish that time will slow down a little bit. That would mean I will have to cherish all the time left and improve myself even further. Being a Psychology student, we have loaaaaads of group assignments. Every subject will bound to have at least one group assignment that weighs around 40% of our total marks. The idea of group assignment is really exciting if you have every group member taking pride in completing the tasks. However reality is not as sweet as we hope it would be.

I know this post won’t be able to reach out to many but I am going to post it anyway because besides ranting, I hope you who are reading this will change your attitude if you are one of those who have been doing injustice to your group.

All of these are based on my own experience dealing in various group assignments. I am not saying that I am the best group member one could ask for, but I am just trying my best to carry out the amanah that is entrusted to us by our lecturers. It is also an amanah by Allah SWT to perform every task beautifully and most of the time, we forgot that we will be held accountable for our actions. K, before I start becoming an Ustazah, let’s begin with the ethics of being a group member.

1. START EARLY

The beginning of the new semester, lecturers will never fail to repeat their mantra of “start your assignments early, start your assignments early, start your assignments early”. Even how much they may sound like a broken radio, it amuses me at how oblivious students are to the instruction. When someone in the group initiates to start the discussion, everyone will be like “yeah! okay!” and the rest is history….until one or two week/s before the deadline where people start to panic. Worst, when the person who initiated kept reminding the group will either not receive any response, or if he/she is lucky, he/she will receive unsatisfactory excuses such as “sorry, I’m busy with another assignment” or “sorry, I am busy with my club”.

It is important to start early because it will enable the group to consult the lecturer in charged of the assignment. Lecturer’s input is reallyyyyyyyyy extremelyyyyyyyy important. Having a first draft is important because most of the time, you won’t be able to truly understand what the lecturer expects. First drafts are usually rejected anyway and imagine if you do not consult your lecturer at all. Fuhhh… All the best for your assignment marks, man.

2. CONSULT LECTURER AS A GROUP

When you have agreed with your group members to consult the lecturer, needless to say, everyone.must.be.there. It is highlyyyyyy unethical to suddenly whatsapp in the group 15 minutes before the appointment that you are unable to attend the meeting due to invalid reason or come 20 minutes late, or worst, MIA (missing in action). Allow me to rant a little bit yeah? I had the worst experience ever whereby my group agreed to consult our lecturer and so I emailed him/her to set an appointment. On the actual day, a group member said that he/she can’t make it 15 minutes before the meeting. Two other members went MIA. Then there’s me and the lecturer. Uhhuhh… After the first failed attempt consultation, we agreed to set up another meeting. You guessed it right. The same thing happened but it was better because one member eventually appeared 20 minutes through the meeting (between me and the lecturer). Finally the third meeting then everyone was present.It was emotionally and mentally torturing for me. Yes, I cried.

The thing is, group members will want to cover up for each other’s back. In my case, I could still help them out the first time. But when the same thing happens, the lecturers could already figure out your working attitude and you should not blame anyone but yourself for receiving low marks.

3. BE CONSISTENT EVEN SMALL ACTIONS

Yes yes yes. For this to happen, look back at point number one- you need to start early. Delegation of tasks needs to be specified clearly at the very beginning and you should start doing research. Usually lecturers will give around two months to prepare assignments and looking up for resources will usually take a long time.This is where you need to be consistent with your readings. I know. It’s boringgggg but hey! We are already in university and if you are seeking pleasure only, I don’t think you are at the right place. University is a place where you develop and mature, and eventually becoming a person who is able to think critically. We are in to serve God and humanity. This is a sacrifice that we have to take.

4. KEEP UPDATING THE GROUP

Usually in a group there will be at least one person who volunteers to be the compiler cum editor. The task of the compiler is not easy. He/She has to make sure the formatting is according to APA style, the points are coherent, the words used are accurate, citation and referencing are all in place, ask the person who did the part to edit if there’s a need, etc. Another experience that I had, I asked a group member to redo his/her part because it did not achieve the required expectation of our topic. The second time he/she handed me his/her part, there was not any much difference. The person said that he/she did not understand what to do. So I listed out one by one what needed to  be done. He/she passed back to me again and there were major changes but it still did not achieve our topic’s objective and worse, plagiarism. The person then gave up and refused to do anything about it and guess who had to do it? Uhhuhhh… So remember that whenever you do not do your part, there is someone else who has to do it.
Making sure that the assignment flows is really important because the lecturer will know if the assignment is being done as a group or it is done individually but compiled haphazardly. It just requires one person to submit to the compiler late and the group assignment will be out of flow. Yes, you may do a great write up and that is the very reason why you are late at submitting to the compiler. However, it will not do any justice to yourself and the group if you send in one or two hours before the submission cz it is impossible to make any editing at such short period of time if your writing style is totally different from the compiler’s. It will then be apparent as though there are two different people doing the assignment.

So yes, it is not the right time to give surprises and please keep updating the group of your progress. Even if you are the compiler, update the group of the final product one day before handing in so that group members will be able to give feedback if let’s say there is something wrong with the format, lecturer’s name, etc; those minute details that we may overlook.

5. DO YOUR OWN ASSIGNMENT

Neverrr ask anyone to do your assignment. It is not ethical and come on la, it’s your grades. With money, everything goes round. I cannot comprehend at how people have the heart to actually submit an assignment which is not theirs. How can someone look at their grades with pride knowing that it is not him/her who did the job? Even if you do not pay a third party but the third party is your good friend, it is unethical. You may think as if you asking your friend sincerely to help you, but you forgot that it might be detrimental to your group. There’s a whole load of difference between guiding and asking your friend to do the job for you. 
6. INFORM OF ANY CHALLENGES

I really do not mind if my group members are not proficient in the English language. That’s the least of my concern. All I need is their ideas and I’ll try to make sense of things. However, I am really upset when group members are not responsive or active in doing their parts. When confronted, then they’ll start to tell what’s going on and that they’re having a hard time with their personal lives. 
Again, it’s only ethical to inform your group members. If you’re having a hard time with your life, then please have the courtesy not to make others’ lives difficult too. Private message someone in your group that you trust, and ask that person to say it on your behalf. When you’re in a group, know that they’ll be there for you and try to accommodate to your situation. 

As for those who feel like you’ve been victimized, quickly alert your lecturer. Do not suffer in silent and in the end jeopardizing your own marks. You have the rights to take charge of your own marks and I’m sure lecturer will be reasonable enough to understand the situation cz really, I think lecturers know that freeriders exist in this world. 

Okay, I guess that’s all for now. I think I’m getting a bit emotional. So before my emotions get the better of me, I should stop. Hehe. 

Let’s make everyone’s experience in the university a pleasant, memorable and enriching one. Again, we have to constantly remind ourselves that all these assignments that are given to us is an amanah. When it is an amanah, it means that we will be held accountable for it in Judgment Day. Life is a test isn’t it? So give yourself no excuses, okie? 

WAllahualam. 

Judging/Labeling Someone You Don’t Know

Bismillaahirrahmaanirraheem…

Assalamualaikum Wr. Wbt.

This conversation was taken from another post of mine in 2014 because I feel it is relevant to this blog post, insyaAllah. This was a real conversation I had with an Ustaz who tested me for my Quranic recitation examination back in late 2013…

Ustaz: This is the first time I’ve seen a student from Human Sciences (from Singapore) who wears the niqab. Why do you wear the niqab?

Me: To avoid from doing more sins, Ustaz.

Ustaz: So in Singapore do you follow any group?

Me: Huh? What do you mean?

Ustaz: I mean, salafi or anything??

Me: Ouh… No la. I’m a Muslim.

At that point of time, it was barely 6 months since I made a proper hijrah. Honestly I knew nothing. My aim was (and still is) just trying to improve myself as a Muslim. Coming from secular education with not much proper religious knowledge, I was confused between what’s right and what’s wrong in the eyes of Allah.

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I’m not sure why but this world is really a funny and complicated one. Before hijrah, I do not know of anyone who hated me. After hijrah, Muslims start to unfriend me just because I hold on to a certain scholar’s opinion and I was completely labelled as following the scholar’s school of thought. Before hijrah, I never heard among my circle of friends mocking each other as kafir although they did lots of haraam acts. After hijrah, I see people voluntarily denouncing someone else’s religion as though his/her way of performing is the only right one. Labeling others as kafir seems to be a norm. Sad isn’t it?

You may ask then, so what kind of orientation am I incline to?

Truth to be told, I do not want to put labels on myself. I am not a product that needs labeling or categorizing. That being said, I am not degrading anyone who calls him/herself as ‘Sufi’,Salafi‘, ‘Ikhwan’, etc. It’s your personal choice but importantly you must know why you’re claiming yourself as such. Let’s avoid labeling Sufis as those who go for Mawlid, Tahlil while Salafis are those who don’t. Let us get out of this narrow minded labeling because the discussion is deeper than that.

You may ask again, so does that mean I am not a Shafiee?

Generally, I am. Due to my limited Islamic knowledge, I do follow mahzab Shafiee. However, as my husband’s interest is in hadith, from time to time, he does check out the authenticity of the mahzab’s views yet he also follows the general Shafiee school of thought. That being said, my husband never really shoves down my throat of what he thinks right. Usually he will share his views in discussion form or at times when I see him doing things differently from the general masses, I will ask him and he will lay out all of the opinions of scholars regarding that particular topic. After which, he will let me decide if I want to change my own view or just retain it. There are times where I follow, there are times where I don’t.

For instance, the moving of finger during tashsyahud. He told me there are four acceptable opinions regarding it and I choose to continue what I am comfortable with because it is part of the acceptable opinions. However, if I remember clearly, there is only one time where he instructs me to change my way. When we just got married, my husband looks at the way I pray and he notices that I kept my feet closed together. He says that Rasulullah SAW has already told us to pray as how he prays. Hence, I began to keep my feet apart while praying.

I am sorry if I sound biased, but I love the way my husband explains things out. He will make sure that he does not do injustice to traditional scholars and he will try to list one by one of the narrations of just one particular action that have differences in opinion. I guess that’s the main reason why I was attracted to his teaching (when he was just an Ustaz to me) because of his honest and clear cut methodology. Differences of opinion is a mercy from Allah but instead we are divided because of it.

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We are all seekers of knowledge and we will never really be able to learn completely all aspects of the deen. Being humble is key. There are some whose akhlaq is really MasyaAllah but lacks the knowledge. For example, a person who is really kind to everyone but performs practices that may not have any basis in Islam. While there are some whose knowledge is really MasyaAllah but lack in akhlaq. For example, a person who has great knowledge regarding a certain topic but the way the person propagates the truth deviates others away from the truth rather than embracing it. Both akhlaq and knowledge are important in Islam. There is no way we can single out one from the equation.

A reminder to myself first that we should be helping one another to Jannah. If we see someone lags behind, we should encourage. If we know someone who is not a practicing Muslim or a person who practices Islam which may not be in line with the Islamic traditions, be friends first. Old habit dies hard. What is the likelihood a person changes 20, 30, 40 or 50 years of his/her behavior by a one time advice or worse, being reprimanded at.

Forging sincere friendship should be the first step. Do not enter the friendship with the intention to correct because you will get frustrated easily when the person fails to change the behavior at one try. Just because it is easy for us to accept the truth, that does not mean that others can do it too. Enter the friendship with the intention to understand. Know the real situation and manage from there. Trust me, it is going to be a loooooong journey. Our job is not to make the person change; that is up to Allah’s will. We only need to make sure that we convey Allah’s religion in the most wise and compassionate way.

Ermm hehe. I don’t know why I’ve deviated awaaay from the main topic. However I hope that my message on this post is clear. Like my husband always says we should never see someone as “if you’re not with us, you’re with them. As though there cannot be a third option”.

Most, if not, all of us are striving for Jannah but there are times we gonna slip a little bit here and there and that is only human. However, the best of person is the one who repents and strives to be better Muslim.

May all of our deeds be accepted by Allah SWT and may He grant us the strength and patience in conveying the truth.

WAllahualam.

ps: Photos have got nothing to do with the topic. It’s just that I’ve been missing Palestine a little bit too much. Hehe.

Shall We Revive Islamic Golden Age?

Bismillahirrahmaanirraheem…

Islamic art (7)

Credits to The Golden Age of Islam Blogspot

Assalamualaikum Wrt. Wbt.

My mum wanted to enrol me into a Madrasah when I was in primary one. However, I failed the test. So for the rest of my 10 years compulsory education plus 3 years of college and 1.5 years in a local university, I can safely conclude that my thoughts were largely moulded by the secular education received. I believe any type of education is good, except that what I was lacking of spiritual guidance.I’m quite sure many are/were in the same boat as I was. For me, I’d say I received hidayah at quite a late age and I’d say where I am now is unintended. SubhanAllah.

Thanks to technology, Islamic messages are much more accessible making da’wah  activities much easier and Alhamdulillah this results to people realising the importance of Islam at a much younger age. Teenagers despite coming from secular educational background can be seen filling public Islamic talks and lectures. Alhamdulillah we are seeing progress in our Ummah.

There is a new phenomenon arising from this. There has been a trend whereby secular education students going into a totally new field in the Islamic studies when they have the opportunity to do so and leaving their “secular” life totally. So at the age of 17-20, after ‘O’, ‘N’, ‘A’ Levels or Diploma, they join Islamic centres and start learning Islam and Arabic from scratch. I am not at all saying this is a bad thing. In fact, I believe it is born out of pure intention to compensate for the years loss not knowing Allah SWT. However, insyaAllah I have a suggestion that we can look into together.

I have been passionate about Islamizing our knowledge for the past few years. My passion fires even more after I have gone through a module in my university called “Introduction to History and Civilization”. We learnt about the Golden Age of Islam and also the amazing Muslim scholars whose intellectual capacity were really totally out of this world. When I say Muslim scholars, I do not mean Ulama’ who specialised in Qur’an and Sunnah only. Who I meant were those scholars who studied religion alongside with philosophy, medicine, astronomy, geometry, mathematics, geography, psychology, sociology, history, physics, chemistry, art and architecture, agriculture, etc. SubhanAllah. Let’s take for instance the eminent scholar al-Razi (Rhazes) from Rey (in Iran) who lives in the Islamic Golden Age era. His main interests were medicine, chemistry and philosophy. During his lifetime, he produced lots of works on his interests, and he also wrote an immense medical reference in Europe for 600 years such as in the areas of gynaecology, obstetrics and surgery. MasyaAllah.

In the first paragraph, I’ve said that any type of education is good and yes, that includes our 10-13 years of secular education. That should serve as a basis for something greater instead of turning our back against it. Our world is in need of the truth. If every person who is passionate about Islam becomes a religious teacher, then someone who is in the human sciences field will never find the ultimate truth and still stick to theories and assumptions. Becoming a religious teacher is indeed a commendable role and I am not at all belittling them. Of cz I won’t! My husband is one. Hehe. They are in fact the backbone of our Ummah.

Although it might be impossible to replicate even 1/10 of what our scholars had achieved during the Islamic Golden Age, that does not mean that we should not try. What I am trying to advocate here is that, there is wisdom why Allah SWT placed us where we are now. I have faith Allah SWT did not put me in a Madrasah 19 years ago because He wants me to do something else. Islamizing our current knowledge is the first step to reaching our Golden Age again. Allah SWT says in the Quran:

“Read in the name of your Lord Who created.” (al-‘Alaq:1)

We believe our Lord is the truth. Hence when we read in the name of our Lord, we are reading to seek out the truth. How are we able to search for the truth if we are not exposed to the Qur’an and Sunnah, if we are blinded by only the Western perspectives of a certain issue? At the same time, we believe Islam is a way of life, and  resources and information Allah SWT has given us are sufficient for us to lead our life. Therefore, I feel that in order for us to progress further as an Ummah, we should explore the different fields that we are in now, be critical with what we are being thrown at, and sift out all the lies and falsehood that we have been exposed since we were young.

If you have not known yet, I love my university. I am obsessed with the environment, the curriculum, the lecturers, the facilities (ok, can be improved a bit more. hee.), everything I’d say. Alhamdulillah currently I am pursuing my degree in psychology at International Islamic University of Malaysia (IIUM). IIUM, just like any other universities, offers various courses. However, what makes IIUM different is that IIUM provides both Western theories and Islamic perspectives on every course that IIUM offers which means IIUM students receive a more holistic view of a certain issue. I am not sure of other places which offer similar programmes as IIUM. Even if there is, maybe it might be far from Singapore.

I know it looks like I’m promoting my school, BUT YES, I am shamelessly promoting IIUM. Hehe. But I am not paid for it laa… Hmm.. I should demand for royalty for every person enrolled through me eh. Hee..  So here I am going to advertise to you Association of Singaporean IIUM (ASIIUM) very first Open Day which will be held next week, insyaAllah! There will be seminar and Q&A session, sharing session with alumni and current students, booths on  the various courses that IIUM offers, etc. So if this is your first time hearing about IIUM or you are not really sure if IIUM is the place you want to be, be sure to join ASIIUM’s Open Day, okie?

Here are the details:

Date: 18 June 2016
Venue: MUIS Academy Training Room
Time: 2pm – 6pm

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Click here to register and get your ticket! 😀 Bring all your friends along so that all of you have one more option open in making your decision to pursue your studies. This also applies to those who wish to pursue Masters and PhD. If you are still 50-50 whether to attend or not and you are still able to read another lengthy blog post, hehe, then do read Muslim Coming From Secular Education? Join IIUM!.

I hope no one takes me wrongly. I am not belittling anyone here. I am not judging you if you choose to leave your past and start anew with Islamic studies. I am also not referring to people with secular education background only although they are my target reader for this post. If you are from from a Madrasah and you are also looking out at IIUM as one of your options, then you are warmly welcome too! It’s time we integrate and share ideas despite coming from different backgrounds, yeahhhhh… Let’s progress together for the betterment of our Ummah, insyaAllah!

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Taken from The Golden Age of Islam Blogspot

WAllahualam.