If u possess nothing but only Allah,
u'll have everything. But if u possess everything
but Allah is not with u, then u don't have
anything.


I'm just an ordinary person trying hard to write.
I name the page "Sehijau daun" (As green as leaf)
because I feel that I'm still new in writing.
There are many things that I need to learn
about writing.
I do not usually do this everyday,
but whenever I find something significant to share,
inshaAllah,
I will try my best to lay down my feelings and
tell you what I think about the people and
their environment.


Aspirations: I want to be a good educator and a good writer :)

Hobbies: Reading, writing, cooking and gardening,
I have just bought two pots of plants - a daisy and a rose, and
I'm going to adopt some of my friends' plants too :D


Favourite books:
Laskar Pelangi (Andrea Hirata Seman),
To Sir With Love (E.R. Braithwaite),
Man-eater of Malgudi (R.K. Narayan),
The Undomestic Goddess (Sophie Kinsella),
To Kill a Mockingbird - Harper Lee,
Faisal Tehrani's, Zaid Akhtar's,
Amy Tan's, Jane Austen's,
La Tahzan (Dr Aidh al-Qarni),
Nostalgia Padang (Dzulkarnain Ithnain),
Enid Blyton's, Totto-chan (Tetsuko Kuroyanagi),
Twilight of the Nyonyas (Chin Kee Onn),
etc,etc.etc

Philosophy:
Don't quit, Allah is always there for you!
Be the Best in everything you pursue!
Do not give up until the last buzzer sounds!



<< August 2016 >>
Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
 01 02 03 04 05 06
07 08 09 10 11 12 13
14 15 16 17 18 19 20
21 22 23 24 25 26 27
28 29 30 31

Love starts from eyes...
grows with dreams and end with tears...

but UKHUWWAH starts with Ta'aruf,
grows with Tadhiyah and
everlasting in JANNAH. Ameen


The Nuur of Islam

Erti Hidup Pada Memberi
Tafheem Ul Quran

Nur Sauqeena
Siti Yusrina Nadihah

Teaching and Learning English

Linguistics Zone
English Club
Tune in to Learning

Writers' P.O.V.

Hj Azizi Hj Abdullah
Faisal Tehrani
Nisah Hj Haron
Zaid Akhtar
Andrea Hirata Seman

Pearls of Life

Zaenul Ahmad
Gawtama Bayu


**************************************
Rancang dengan apa yang ada di tangan
Bukan yang kita angan-angankan
Ohh... kita membina cita dan harapan
Bukan mimpi dan igauan





*****************************************
EPILOG SILAM

Dalam mengenang kisah hidup silam
Ku sedar dari kesilapan lalu
Tuhan beratnya dosa-dosaku
Masih adakah ampunan buatku...

Tuhan... dalam menempuh hidup ini
Banyaknya dugaan datang menguji
Tuhan... ada yang dapat kugagahi
Dan ada yang gagal kuhindari

Tuhan dosaku menggunung tinggi
Tapi taubatku tak kutepati
Tuhan... rahmatMu melangit luas
Terlalu sedikit ku bersyukur

Kini ku kembali padaMu
Mengharap maghfirah dariMu
Moga terampunlah dosa-dosaku
Biarpun ujian melanda,
Ku tetap berkasih padaMu
Kerna kuyakin kasihMu
Kekal tiada sudahnya.




One Thousand Million Smile

by Allahyarham Sudirman

There's a gift I'd like to give you
That can't be bought or sold
A ray of sunshine across the waters
That comes straight from the soul

Let us join our hands together
To bind the colours of our skin
A rainbow under GOD's Great heaven
A sign that love will always win

One thousand million smiles
I bring to you across the miles
In my land of sunshine
Or in your land of snow
Makes no difference where you are
If you let your feeling show

One thousand million ways
To love each other every day
For the poet and the old man
For the mother and the child
These One thousand million smiles

If the world is full of sorrow
Then what's the meaning of life
If war's the master of the house
And hunger is his wife ooo...

But a shining bridge of lovin' smiles
And tender helping hands
Will bind all men on earth together
And will forever stand

So here I Stand with heart in hand
I bring this gift from my homeland
So take these smiles and sweets hellos
Keep then in your heart where ever you may go


****************************************

Damba Cinta Mu
dendangan kumpulan nasyid Raihan

Tuhanku ampunkanlah segala dosaku
Tuhanku maafkanlah kejahilan hambaMu

Ku sering melanggar laranganMu
Dalam sedar ataupun tidak
Ku sering meninggalkan suruhanMu
Walau sedar aku milikMu

Bilakah diri ini kan kembali
Kepada fitrah sebenar
Pagi ku ingat petang ku alpa
Begitulah silih berganti

Oh Tuhanku Kau pimpinlah diri ini
Yang mendamba cintaMu
Aku lemah aku jahil
Tanpa pimpinan dariMu

Ku sering berjanji depanMu
Sering jua ku memungkiri
Ku pernah menangis keranaMu
Kemudian ketawa semula

Kau Pengasih Kau Penyayang Kau Pengampun
Kepada hamba-hambaMu
Selangkah ku kepadaMu
Seribu langkah Kau pada ku

Tuhan diri ini tidak layak ke syurga Mu
Tapi tidak pula aku sanggup ke neraka Mu

Ku takut kepadaMu
Ku harap jua padaMu
Moga ku kan selamat dunia akhirat
Seperti rasul dan sahabat



*******************************************
SUCCESS

Success will come
to those who dream the impossible,
who willingly make sacrifices,
Who refuse to accept defeat,
who keep going
though the path gets tougher by day,
You are the person who knows
what success means,
You've devoted yourself to
accomplishing the goals you believe in,
You are not afraid to be a little different,
but continue to find solutions to your dreams,
You have a strong sense of purpose,
readily accepting challenges along the way,
You are succces...
Keep believing in yourself
and find happiness in the days ahead....


**************************************
TO REALIZE

To realize
The value of a sister,
Ask someone Who doesn't have one.

To realize
The value of ten years:
Ask a newly Divorced couple.

To realize
The value of four years:
Ask a graduate.

To realize
The value of one year:
Ask a student who Has failed a final exam.

To realize
The value of nine months:
Ask a mother who gave birth to a still born.

To realize
The value of one month:
Ask a mother who has given birth to
A premature baby.

To realize
The value of one week:
Ask an editor of a weekly newspaper.

To realize
The value of one hour:
Ask the lovers who are waiting to meet.

To realize
The value of one minute:
Ask a person
Who has missed the train, bus or plane.

To realize
The value of one-second:
Ask a person
Who has survived an accident.

To realize
The value of one millisecond:
Ask the person
who has won a silver medal in the Olympics

Time waits for no one.
Treasure every moment you have.
You will treasure it even more when
you can share it with someone special.

To realize the value of a friend:
Lose one.

************************************
A story of life..................................

An old American Muslim lived on a farm in the
mountains of eastern Kentucky
with his young grandson.
Each morning Grandpa was up early
sitting at the kitchen table
reading his Quraan. His grandson wanted
to be just like him and tried
to imitate him in every way he could.

One day the grandson asked,
"Papa, I try to read the Quraan just
like you but I don't understand it,and what I do
understand I forget as soon as I close the book.
What good does reading the Quraan do?"

The Grandfather quietly turned from putting coal in
the stove and replied,
"Take this coal basket down to the river
and bring me back a basket of water."

The boy did as he was told,
but all the water
leaked out before he got back to the house.
The grandfather laughed and said,
"You'll have to move a little faster next time,
" and sent him back to the river
with the basket to try again.

This time the boy ran faster,
but again the basket
was empty before he returned home.
Out of breath, he told his
grandfather that it was impossible
to carry water in a basket,
and he went to get a bucket instead.

The old man said,
"I don't want a bucket of water; I
want a basket of water.
You're just not trying hard enough,"
and he went out the door
to watch the boy try again.
At this point, the boy
knew it was impossible,
but he wanted to show his grandfather
that even if he ran as fast as he could,
the water would leak out
before he got back to the house.
The boy again dipped the basket into
river and ran hard,
but when he reached his grandfather
the basket was again empty.

Out of breath, he said,
"See Papa, it's useless!"
"So you think it is useless?"
The old man said,
"Look at the basket."

The boy looked at the basket
and for the first time
realized that the basket was different.
It had been transformed from
a dirty old coalbasket
and was now clean, inside and out.


A friend forwarded this story to me.
So I don't know whether this is true or not.
But, it tells us that
Al-Quraan has the healing power
to purify dirty souls.
Wallahu'alam.

*************************************

I would like to share with you guys
the lyrics of the theme song of
my favourite anime, Fruit Basket.
The animation is about Tohru,
the protagonist in the story.


FRUITS BASKET

I was so happy, you were laughing
With a smile that melts everything away
Spring is still far away, inside the cold earth,
Waiting for the time to sprout

For instance, even if today is painful
And yesterday's wounds remain
I want to believe that I can free my heart and go on

I cannot be reborn
But I can change as I go on, so
Let's stay together always

For instance, even if today is painful
Someday it will become a warm memory
If you leave everything up to your heart

I understand the meaning our living here
It is to know the joy of having been born
Let's stay together always


****************************************

Sebuah puisi lama, hasil nukilan
ketika masih berada di UKM.

HAKIKAT PERJUANGAN

Manusia selalu berkata bahawa
hidup itu satu perjuangan,
Tapi pernahkah ia terfikir harga yang
harus dibayar untuk membeli sebuah
perjuangan?
Lidah petah berkata,
tangan menghayun ke kanan dan ke kiri,
Pernahkah terlintas
hakikat perjuangan di hati naluri?
Di sana sini manusia sibuk bermegah diri,
Melaungkan itu dan ini,
Tidak terfikirkah
amanat Allah yang ditanggung selama ini,
Sedangkan lidah asyik berbicara,
Sehingga pesanan Rasulullah
dianggap enteng cuma,
Tidakkah terfikir balasan dan azab di neraka,
Atau sudah yakin diri akan mendiami syurga,
Sedarlah hanya Allah Penentu Segala.
Banyak orang ingin berjuang....
Tapi sayang sekadar
melukut di tepian gantang,
Melepaskan batuk di tangga,
Tanpa memahami...
erti perjuangan yang sebenarnya,
Kabur dengan hala tuju perjuangannya,
Hanya melihat, mendengar dan menurut,
Tanpa menimbangkan dengan akal,
Ingat, anugerah Allah bukan untuk dipersia,
Gunakanlah ia dengan sebaik mungkin,

Ayuhai sahabat,
Jangan biarkan mindamu
dijajah sewenangnya,
Fikir dulu sebelum bertindak,
Rasulullah sering berpesan,
Janganlah ada di antara kamu
menjadi manusia yang tidak berpendirian..
Berpegang teguh
pada Al-Quran dan As-sunnah
Insya-Allah,
dirimu tidak terkapai dilambung ombak.

Sesungguhnya
perjuangan menuntut pengorbanan,
Takwa, Ikhlas dan Sabar,
Disatukan menjadi kekuatan,
Perkukuhkan dirimu dengan ilmu di dada,
Hanya orang berilmu mampu menilai,
Hakikat perjuangan yang sebenarnya,
Percayalah ia bukan mudah,
Menuntut segala pemahaman
zahir dan batin,
Berjuanglah sebagai hamba Allah,
Yang hanya
ingin mencari keredaan-Nya.
Jangan anggap dirimu yang paling baik,
Andai imanmu
tidak seteguh Saidina Abu Bakar,
Atau dirimu
tidak seberani Khalid Al-Walid
di medan perjuangan,
Usahlah
menabur kata-kata nista tentang orang lain,
Hisab dirimu,
sejauh mana hubunganmu dengan Al-Khaliq...
Jadilah pejuang Islam yang tulen,
Istiqamah dengan perjuangan,
Beriman dengan hati,
Menilai dengan ilmu,
Membuktikan dengan amalan,
Itulah hakikat perjuangan............

NUR ISLAMI

**********************************

Another poem that appreciates women
but until now, I am unsure of the writer
of this particular poem. If anybody knows,
please let me know OK,
Jazakallahu khairan kathira.


WANITA : AKAL SENIPIS RAMBUTNYA

Jangankan lelaki biasa,
Nabi pun terasa sunyi tanpa wanita,
Tanpa mereka, hati, fikiran,
dan perasaan lelaki akan resah,
Masih mencari walaupun ada segalanya...

Apa yang tidak ada di syurga,
namun Adam tetap rindukan Hawa,
Pada wanitalah lelaki memanggil
ibu, isteri atau pun puteri,
Dijadikan wanita dari
tulang rusuk yang bengkok,
Untuk diluruskan oleh lelaki,
Tapi kalau lelaki sendiri tidak lurus...
Mana mungkin kayu yang bengkok
menghasilkan bayang yang lurus,
Luruskan wanita dengan jalan yang ditunjukkan Allah,
Kerana mereka dicipta
sebegitu rupa oleh Allah.

Didiklah mereka dengan panduan dariNya,
Janganlah cuba
menjinakkan mereka dengan harta,
Kerana nantinya mereka semakin liar,
Janganlah
menghiburkan mereka dengan kecantikan,
Kerana nantinya mereka semakin menderita,
Yang sementara itu
tidak dapat menyelesaikan masalah.

Kenalkan mereka kepada Allah,
Zat yang kekal,
Di situlah punca kekuatan dunia,
Akal senipis rambutnya,
tebalkanlah ia dengan ilmu,
Hati serapuh kaca,
kuatkanlah ia dengan iman,
Perasaan selembut sutera,
hiasilah ia dengan akhlak,
Suburkanlah ia,
kerana dari situlah nantinya
mereka akan lihat,
Nilaian dan keadilan Tuhan...

Bisikkan ke telinga mereka bahawa,
Kelembutan bukan satu kelemahan,
Ia bukan diskriminasi Tuhan,
Sebaliknya di situlah kasih sayang Tuhan,
Wanita yang lupa hakikat kejadiannya,
Pasti tidak terhibur dan tidak menghiburkan...

Tanpa ilmu, iman dan akhlak,
Mereka tidak akan lurus
bahkan akan membengkok,
Itulah akibatnya
andainya wanita tidak kenal Tuhannya
Bila wanita derhaka,
dunia lelaki akan huru-hara,
Lelaki pula
janganlah mengharapkan ketaaatan
tetapi binalah kepimpinan,
Pastikan
sebelum memimpin wanita menuju Ilahi,
Pimpinlah diri sendiri kepadaNya,
Jinakkan diri pada Allah,
Nescaya akan jinaklah segala-galanya,

Di bawah pimpinanmu..
Janganlah mengharapkan isteri semulia
Fatimah Az-Zahraí
Andai peribadimu tidak sehebat
Saidina Ali Karamallahu Wajhah...



Woman Work

Iíve got the children to tend
The clothes to mend
The floor to mop
The food to shop
Then the chicken to fry
The baby to dry
I got company to feed
The garden to weed
Iíve got the shirts to press
The tots to dress
The cane to be cut
I gotta clean up this hut
Then see about the sick
And the cotton to pick.

Shine on me, sunshine
Rain on me, rain
Fall softly, dewdrops
And cool my brow again.

Storm, blow me from here
With your fiercest wind
Let me float across the sky
ĎTil I can rest again.

Fall gently, snowflakes
Cover me with white
Cold icy kisses and
Let me rest tonight.
Sun, rain, curving sky
Mountain, oceans, leaf and stone
Star shine, moon glow
Youíre all that I can call my own.

By Maya Angelou (b. 1928)

************************************

The Value of Mother

A little boy came up to his mother
in the kitchen one evening while
she was fixing supper,
and he handed her
a piece of paper that
he had been writing on.
After his mom dried her hands
on an apron, she read it, a
nd this is what it said:

For cutting the grass: $5.00
For cleaning up
my room this week: $1.00
For going to the store for you: .50
Babysitting my kid brother
while you went shopping: .25
Taking out the garbage: $1.00
For getting a good report card: $5.00
For cleaning up and
raking the yard: $2.00
Total owed: $14.75

Well, his mother looked at
him standing there,
the boy could see the memories
flashing through her mind.
She picked up the pen,
turned over the paper he'd written on,
and this is what she wrote:

For 9 months I carried you while
you were growing inside me: No Charge.
For all the nights that I've sat up with you,
doctored and prayed for you: No Charge.
For all the trying times, and all the tears
that you've caused through the years: No Charge.
For all the nights that were filled with dread,
and for the worries I knew were ahead: No Charge.
For the toys, food, clothes,
and even wiping your nose: No Charge,
Son, When you add it up,
the cost of my love is: No Charge.


When the boy finished reading
what his mother had written,
there were big tears in his eyes,
and he looked straight at his mother
and said, "Mum, I sure do love you".

And then he took the pen
and in great big letters he wrote:
"PAID IN FULL"

"Your Lord ( ALLAH ) has decreed that
you should worship nothing except Him,
and show) kindness to your parents,
whether one or both of them attain old age
(while they are) still with you,
never say to them 'Shame! nor scold either of them.
Speak to them in a generous fashion.
Protect them carefully and say:
'My Lord, show them mercy,
just as they cared for me as a little child'"
[Surah 17:23-24].


Sahabat, tanpamu, perjuangan ini tidak bermakna.....

Teman Sejati (Brothers)

Selama ini
Ku mencari-cari
Teman yang sejati
Buat menemani
Perjuangan suci
Bersyukur kini
PadaMu Illahi
Teman yang dicari
Selama ini
Telah ku temui

Dengannya di sisi
Perjuangan ini
Senang diharungi
Bertambah murni
Kasih Illahi
Kepada Mu Allah

Ku panjatkan doa
Agar berkekalan
Kasih sayang kita
Kepada mu teman
Ku pohon sokongan
Pengorbanan dan pengertian
Telah ku ungkapkan
Segala-galanya...

Kepada Mu Allah
Ku pohon restu
Agar kita kekal bersatu
Kepada mu teman
Teruskan perjuangan
Pengorbanan dan kesetiaan
Telah ku ungkapkan
Segala-galanya
Itulah tandanya
Kejujuran kita




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Saturday, October 11, 2008
Aidilfitri di perantauan

"Ikhlaskan hati mohon kemaafan, leburlah dosa di tapak tangan, lupakan segala silap dan salah... insan bersatu membina ummah..."

Terlebih dahulu saya ingin memohon ampun dan maaf zahir dan batin sempena kedatangan Syawal yang mulia ini. Semoga semua ibadah kita di bulan Ramadhan diterima Allah SWT. Maaf juga dipinta kerana sudah agak lama tidak mengisi ruang di blog. Niat di hati mahu mencoret sedikit di pagi 1 Syawal yang lepas, tetapi sibuk lah pula dengan pelbagai "acara" yang telah diatur teman-teman sejak dua minggu yang lepas.

Acaranya cuma ada dua, solat sunat aidilfitri di Masjid Ponsonby, Auckland dan kunjungan ke rumah-rumah keluarga Malaysia dan sahabat-sahabat di Auckland. Disebabkan jarak antara rumah-rumah yang ingin dikunjungi itu agak jauh, terasa seperti berada dalam kereta untuk pulang ke kampung halaman. Rasa macam di Malaysia pula. Syukur alhamdulillah diberikan Allah kesempatan untuk menikmati aidilfitri walaupun di rantau orang. Dan ketika menjamah juadah hasil air tangan bonda-bonda Malaysia di Auckland ini, hati terubat seketika pada masakan ibu.

Rumah pertama yang kami serang pada pagi itu ialah rumah Auntie Priska. Hmmm, memang rambang mata dibuatnya, pelbagai juadah membuka selera. Soto, nasi tomato, rendang daging, pulut kuning, kuih muih... Saya memilih untuk menjamah soto kerana sudah sangat lama tidak merasainya setelah hampir 7 bulan bulan lebih di Auckland. Setelah soto, jamah pula pulut kuning dan rendang daging. Haha, lepas tuh "pause" sekejap sebab dah penuh. Setelah beberapa ketika, baru lah jamah biskut raya.

Lepas rumah Auntie Priska, kami ke rumah Kak Asiah di North Shore. Masuk-masuk aje ke dalam rumah, ternampak atas meja penuh hidangan kek, hmmm tak tahu nak makan yang mana satu. Tetapi kek "blueberry berkrim", hasil air tangan suami Kak Asiah memang sedap, sampai saya sendiri meminta Kak Asiah upload resepi di blog huhu... Setelah itu, kami pulang ke rumah untuk solat zuhur and then menyambung kembali pengembaraan ke rumah Auntie Fatimah dan Kak Tun. Kunjungan kami ke rumah Kak Tun selalunya memang lama, solat asar di sana, sempat bersembang dengan jiran Kak Tun, Auntie Nita yang berasal dari Filipina tetapi telah lama berada di New Zealand. Dapat pula jemputan Auntie Nita melihat-lihat rumah dan taman bunganya. Sebelum ini kami selalu tertanya-tanya (especially me) siapalah empunya rumah yang banyak betul tanaman bunga ni!! Tuah aidilfitri, dapatlah saya mengambil beberapa gambar di taman bunga Auntie Nita, malah selepas itu dihadiahi sejambak bunga dari taman beliau. Thank you very much Auntie Nita!

Habis episod di rumah Kak Tun, kami pergi pula ke rumah Kak Zakiah. Setelah itu pulang solat maghrib di rumah dan kemudian... hmmm menyambung lagi! Berkunjung pula ke apartment Zaida dan terakhir sekali ke rumah Zack dan Chah. Masa ni semua dah tak larat nak makan tetapi mata saya ternampak sesuatu yang saya idamkan, kek lapis! Hmmm, memang duduk mengadap itu saja dan menjamah sedikit nasi impit dan serunding - hah yang ini pun ditunggu-tunggu, alhamdulillah ada....

Sebaik sahaja sampai di rumah, saya menerpa ke bilik air, membersihkan diri, solat Isya' dan melihat-lihat persiapan untuk ke kelas pada hari esok! Begitulah episod menarik 1 Syawal di Auckland!


Posted at 10:00 am by Zamrud Zainal Abidin
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Friday, September 26, 2008
K.I.S.S versus lengthy elaborations...

I'm sure most students out there are very familiar with the common formula:

Keep It Short and Simple/Sweet - K.I.S.S

There are also other cliche remarks which conform with the above formula, "The more you write, the more mistakes you make." This statement has become English Language teachers' most popular tip when teaching writing to students. It is simply because teachers may not like it when they have to pinpoint a lot of grammatical errors, (not counting inappropriate words, incoherent phrases!) which are littered in the essays! Usually, adventurous students whose sincere wishes are to display creativity, may encounter problems in their writings due to lack of grammatical competence.

"The more complex the sentences produced, the more likely they are to contain errors" (Foster & Skehan, 1996).

Most students especially the ones who favour "formula" in language classes, will take this to heart and remember it until the day they die! However, the KISS formula is not that relevant anymore when you pursue your Master or PhD degrees. Why?

Normally, an assignment for a postgraduate student requires him or her to write a minimum of 2000 words! But if they are lucky, sometimes an assignment will only require 1000 to 1500 words! Unfortunately, this is very rare! Why a lot of words? Well, this is where you are provided sufficient space and ground to argue your ideas critically and creatively with reference to the previous literatures (Of course, what else???) Quoting some prominent researchers' words may help, but it will be better if you can also display a true understanding of the quotations by summarising and synthesizing them in your own statements in order to present a clear argument of an idea or concept.

If you ask me, is it easy? NO, it is not easy. A lot of time and effort is needed to bring the 2000-word essay to a level where it is readable, comprehensible and most important of all, coherent! There is no use stringing a lot of quotations from the previous literatures without exactly knowing what to present in the argument. Nevertheless, time constraints, lack of understanding of the concept, last minute "breakthrough" (this happens when you say, "finally, I understand what this means!!!") and also burnouts will somehow "get in the way" of producing a wonderful clearly elaborated piece of essay!

I'm not writing this to discourage anybody let alone implying that essay writing is a definite brain-drilling! I'm writing this to remind myself that more effort should be put into the work I'm producing. Nothing is easy. Life is not a bed of roses. Reality is sometimes bitter but still you just have to face it! To those who feel inclined to continue their academic jouney to the highest peak, my sincere advice would be to sharpen your reading and writing skills. Most of all, be patient, you really must be patient with the readings. Different writers have different styles of writing and therefore, you will encounter a lot of patterns!

Okay, I'd better stop now before I write more incoherent phrases!


Posted at 01:36 am by Zamrud Zainal Abidin
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Thursday, September 25, 2008
Jangan tinggal daku..... wahai Ramadan yang penuh barakah!

"Ku mengharapkan Ramadan kali ini penuh makna..
Agar dapat kulalui dengan sempurna

Selangkah demi selangkah, setahun sudah pun berlalu
Masa yang pantas berlalu, hingga tak terasa ku berada di bulan Ramadan...
semula...."

Begitu pantas Ramadan berlalu... jika dihitung-hitung, hanya beberapa hari lagi tinggal untuk kaum Muslimin merebut pahala dan redha Allah di bulan yang penuh kemuliaan ini.

Ramadan kali ini begitu bermakna buat diri ini kerana pertama kali meraikannya di perantauan, menjalani ibadah sambil menuntut ilmu, suka dan duka dirasai seadanya. Riang tatkala berbuka bersama-sama teman seperjuangan di sini tetapi pada masa yang sama, sayu di hati mengenangkan betapa Ramadan kali ini disertai dengan pelbagai "episod menarik" di tanahair tercinta. Sebagai seorang anak "tanah pusaka" yang memandang dari kejauhan, hati kecil ini terusik, asyik bertanya, bilakan "konflik" ini akan berakhir... moga dengan kedatangan lebaran, akan leburlah dosa di antara "hati-hati ini" di tapak tangan... (itu hanya lah secebis harapan, berbekal doa!)

Alhamdulillah, semalam saya berkesempatan solat tarawikh berjemaah di salah sebuah masjid di Auckland - Masjid Ponsonby. Jemaah muslimat hanya dua saf tetapi roh sakinah dan ukhuwwah terasa menyentap ke sanubari. Sebelum solat, sempat disapa oleh seorang jemaah muslimat dari Palestin, yang sudah dua tahun berada di New Zealand. Sayang sekali, saya dan teman tidak sempat berbual lebih lanjut dengannya kerana waktu solat isya' sudah masuk ketika itu dan kami pula terpaksa meninggalkan dewan solat setelah selesai lapan rakaat solat tarawikh sebab takut tiada perkhidmatan bas lagi selepas jam 9 malam. However, it's a nice experience! InsyaAllah, kami akan ke sana lagi besok.

Pada ketika ini, saya berasa sangat bersyukur kerana dikurniakan Allah Ta'ala kesempatan untuk menuntut ilmu di bumi orang. Ramadan kali ini telah menyedarkan saya akan banyak perkara; erti sebenar kesabaran, erti kesyukuran, erti toleransi dan erti keyakinan pada pertolongan Allah! Maha Suci Allah yang mengajarkan segala-galanya! Betapa saya tidak ingin Ramadan ini berlalu pergi dengan pantas... moga ibadah kita semua diterima Nya, taqabbalallahu minna wa minkum!

Moga lebaran yang akan hadir ini menyatukan umat atas satu nama, insyaAllah!


Posted at 05:09 pm by Zamrud Zainal Abidin
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Saturday, September 20, 2008
Take your time...

Somewhere in 2004, in a contemporary literature class...

"Take your time to read the text, feel the words, slowly dissolving into your brain, take your time to appreciate... okay, for example, eating chicken rice... savour the taste, how juicy, how tender the chicken is... its rich flavour... the rice aroma..... savour the taste!"

Somewhere in the library, in the midst of photocopying a chapter from a book...

A lady privately muttering to herself,"Oh darn this machine... oh dear, I've forgotten to press the "reduce" button!!! Ahhh, I've wasted NZD 0.20, hmmm better not convert that to Malaysian ringgit... tuh lah, I should have taken my time... yes... take your time to do this!"

Somewhere in the kitchen, trying in vain to wash and separate the half-frozen chicken parts...

"Oh why this thing refuses to come off!!!! Ouchhh!! Ya Allah, I've scratched my thumb again! I should have taken more time to defross the chicken... yes, Mas, you should take your time to do this..."

Somewhere in the middle of editing a paper... (to be submitted the next day!)

"Alamak!!! I've quoted this one wrongly....... itu lah, I must take my time in understanding this Widdowson quotation! What he really means is totally different from what I perceived earlier... I need to be more patient..."

Thought of the day:

The 'wonderful' thing about humans is that they never really learn from experience... which indicates that humans need continuous reminders and guidance (from Allah, Rasulullah, parents, people around us) to survive the long journey named Life...

"dan berpesan-pesan lah dengan kesabaran..." (al-asr)


Posted at 04:08 pm by Zamrud Zainal Abidin
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Sunday, September 14, 2008
Patience, Perseverance and Hard Work

At this moment, I'm finishing one of the most important documents that later will enable me to complete my studies soon, insyaAllah... however, this is just the starter, not the main course. InsyaAllah, with Allah's blessings, I will be able to do it! All that I must remember is the al-Quran verse 282 in Chapter 2 (al-Baqarah) which I keep in my heart:

"Dan bertaqwa lah kamu kepada Allah nescaya Allah akan mengajar kamu. Dan Allah itu Maha Berilmu terhadap segala sesuatu."

Ya Allah, help me with my academic writings... Sometimes I can hear my brain cells screaming, "Stop! Stop! It hurts... we are extremely tired!" But dear Allah, I cannot stop now, no, not now! Please grant me strength, patience, perseverance and discipline, so that I can keep up the hard work, in order to pave the road to success, not for me alone ya Allah, it's for the Deenul Islam, the ummah and the beloved land, aamiin ya rabbal 'alamiin...!!!

The images of Petronas's commercial for the 51st Malaysian Independence Day are still flashing in my mind, urging me, to do my very best, insyaAllah!

PATIENCE + PERSEVERANCE + HARD WORK = ROAD TO SUCCESS


Posted at 11:40 pm by Zamrud Zainal Abidin
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My Hopelessly Romantic Lizzy...

Don't get me wrong! I purposely put the above title to indulge my passion in reading Miss Jane Austen's novels, especially the infamous Pride and Prejudice.

I have to admit that, there are certain things that I observe when reading her novels, decorum, elegance, subtle femininity and family values. Reading her novels make me think more critically of the previous society she was in; where women were extremely depended on making good marriages in order to have a better life. There were social classes as well and "connections" mattered in order to secure an excellent match. I remember Maria Lucas said to her sister, Charlotte Lucas, "ohh.. Mary King, she's not that pretty..." which Charlotte then quickly replied, "Beauty is not the only virtue, Maria, I understand that she has just inherited 10 000 pounds!" Then Mrs. Gardiner chirped in, "... and that is a definite virtue!"

But how sad, Jane Austen herself ended up not married because she believed in love marriage, the very idea that she instilled in her lovely Elizabeth Bennet. I hope... hmmmm.... I'm hoping to be a "hopeless romantic" too.... hmmmmmmmmm....

Dare not write much! :D


Posted at 07:12 pm by Zamrud Zainal Abidin
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Friday, September 12, 2008
I'm walking down the longggg memory lane...

Some might say that I totally live in the past, just like Hugh Grant's character, singer and songwriter Alex Fletcher in Music and Lyrics... but then I don't. I just refuse to forget... It seems that I can really remember previous significant events of life but almost everybody will remember... In my case, everything is significant, my first storybook, my first day of kindergarten, my first day of school, my first best buddies during Convent primary school years, my first crush when I moved to another primary school (ooppps... can't tell where.... it's tooooo dangerous!!!), etc, etc, etc.

Alhamdulillah, I should be grateful to Allah for His blessings and best gifts, alhamdulillah, my memory is good that I can remember a lot of things in life. Some say (or many say huhuhu...) that I take things seriously and too seriously sometimes (or is it most of the times huhu...). If you tell me these things about 15 years ago, I will definitely sulk and refuse to talk for quite some time... but now I readily accept that I am a very passionate person, I take things seriously and too seriously sometimes. But then again, it's a habit that I cannot simply discard to the garbage bin, it's partly training from my parents. Not that I blame them for this, I am thankful to them for their training because I know, a person may have his or her added values or flaws. I'm not perfect. So this 'thing' in me, it can be an advantage or a disadvantage, depending on how I run my 'check and balance'.

Oh dear, I've got carried away again... hahaha, but this is my blog, my writing, I can do whatever I want, yes whatever I want as long as I don't touch any sensitive issues!  (I'm sure my students will say, here she goes again.... hahaha) Who cares about cohesion and coherence, or mechanics? As long as you can make sense of what I've written, that's fine...

Actually, today, I've got a bit bored over my readings and suddenly I miss all the old local nasheed songs - The Zikr, Raihan, Hijjaz, Brothers, NowSeeHeart, Saujana and In-Team. This suddenly started this early morning after fajr prayer when out of nowhere, I blurted out some phrases from Hijjaz's Puteriku Sayang.  After Raihan lost two of its prominent members (first Allahyarham Zarie, may peace be upon his soul and later Nazrey, when he decided to go solo as freelance 'daie'), and after nasheed songs become almost identical to pop songs (I'm referring to the melody, not lyrics but then again, some nasheed songs have also chosen 'love' themes - husband and wife kinda theme... ), I start backing off slowly from local nasheed. Ten years ago, my interpretation of nasheed songs are songs that contain words of worships (zikr) to Allah al-Mighty as well as 'solawat' to the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) or Islamic anecdotes - Ashabul Kahfi by Raihan or words of advice - Mari Bersolat, 25 Rasul, Keluarga Bahagia etc, etc, etc.

So today, after Zuhr prayer, I sat in front of my notebook and began googling the songs... before this I didn't manage to find any, maybe my search went wrong, but today, alhamdulillah, Allah grant my wishes and I downloaded a lot of songs... Ten years ago, I bought cassettes and since I've also lost my CDs, these downloaded songs are enough to cure my homesickness to my favourite nasheed songs. I had tears in my eyes when I finally listened again to Puji-Pujian, Damba Cinta Mu, Wahyu Pertama, Ashabul Kahfi, Rayuan Rindu and Selamat Berjuang. When I listened to Merancang Kerja and Puteriku Sayang, I was brought back to 1999 and also 2002. In 1999, I was still in one of the IPTAs and a girls-nasheed group from my college entered a nasheed competition for siswi. The group was awarded Fourth place, (this I don't really remember, but I do remember some incidents that led to some misunderstandings... I'm afraid I  have to choose to forget this... I must let go... ) and then later in 2002, my block in one of the siswi colleges in Shah Alam, entered a nasheed competition (I was one of the coaches) singing Akrab Persahabatan and also Puteriku Sayang. Alhamdulillah, after countless efforts, we won first place. When the tune of Damba Cinta Mu filled the air in my flat, I was again surrounded with sweet memories of halaqah that I had with my sisters back in Malaysia... Kem Pemantapan Syakhsiah, iftar jamaie... I miss them all... Some of the songs also inspire cerpen writing... Yes, I began writing short stories in Malay dating from 1999 and suddenly in early 2004, I stopped... due to time constraints and many other unnecessary constraints and also... hmmm, this is very cliche - tak dak idea lah! One of the songs that inspires my writing is Siti Khadijah, sung by In-Team.

I must say that all these old nasheed songs, they come with bitter sweet memories, some that I wish I can simply forget for eternity, some that I wish to keep until the day I die. Unfortunately, I can still remember them all.... but now I'm telling myself that despite these memories in me, I must believe that I can free my heart and go on.... just like the Fruits Basket theme song:

For instance, even if today is painful,
And yesterday's wounds remain,
I want to believe that I can free my heart and go on...

Allah is Great. He is Most Forgiving... the Malay saying also says, "sedangkan nabi ampunkan umat..." I must also be forgiving and learn to also forgive myself for all the mistakes I've done....

Ku mengharapkan Ramadhan kali ini, penuh makna, agar dapat kulalui dengan sempurna.... insyaAllah. Sahabat-sahabiah ku yang ku hormati dan kasihi, maafkan ku atas segala salah silap yang lalu dan doa kalian kupinta untuk kuteruskan perjalanan ini. Jazakumullahu khairan kathira.

 


Posted at 08:24 pm by Zamrud Zainal Abidin
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Thursday, September 11, 2008
Cerita ku... aka My story...

Alhamdulillah, sudah 10 hari Ramadhan di Auckland, New Zealand (di sini kami mula berpuasa pada 2 September lepas)! Subhanallah, begitu pantas masa berlalu. Sebelum saya meneruskan coretan, ingin saya memohon ampun dan maaf pada mana-mana pakar bahasa or 'linguists' yang terbaca tulisan saya ni sebab saya akan code-switch coretan saya ni dengan sesuka hati dan sesedap rasa hehehe, sebab ini coretan yang sangat peribadi hahaha... (ya lah tuh!!!)

Dalam pada berpuasa, tugasan akademik (a.k.a assignments) bertimbun-timbun, alhamdulillah, dua sudah disempurnakan dan dihantar tetapi masih ada satu dan juga kerja-kerja "dissertation" (termasuk lah membaca, merumus, menyimpul, mengedit, memilih 'previous literature' yang sesuai untuk 'literature review' dan juga 'methodology section'). Semua pasti bertanya, "apa yang seronok berpuasa di luar Malaysia?" Hmmm, macam mana nak cakap yaa?

Sejujurnya, berpuasa di mana-mana pun, asalkan di atas bumi Allah ni, sama sahaja rasanya. Cuma mungkin kemeriahan ber tarawih secara berjemaah itu agak terbatas bagi muslimat seperti saya kerana di sini masjid dan rumah adik-adik undergrad (yang menganjurkan solat tarawih berjemaah) agak jauh. Sementelah itu, saya tidak punya 'geng' atau teman untuk menemankan ke masjid atau ke rumah adik2, 'but soon insyaAllah, my friend said, that next week maybe, we'll go to one of the masjids.' InsyaAllah, slowly but yet surely. (Takpe lah, ustaz pun sebut, daripada muslimat ke masjid membawa fitnah, lebih afdal muslimat solat tarawih di rumah sahaja, ceh... nak cari alasan lah ni!)

Apart from that, I miss the "Bazaar Ramadhan" in Malaysia. Well, Malaysia boleh kan??? Of course we don't have such things here, lagi pun New Zealand kan bukan negara Islam. But all the same, last Saturday, MAPSA organised a "buka puasa" function and alhamdulillah, there were a lot of "missed" foods on the table, so dapat lah mengubat kerinduan pada Bazaar Ramadhan kat Malaysia tu... And because now the uni is having a mid-semester break, (which is two weeks), I can cook anything I like for break fasting.

Hah, nak tahu satu cerita best tak? Last Monday, before kita keluar rumah, nak submit assignment, kita pun pack lah kita punya beg, bawa buku and notes for that day's class, konon-konon nak bawa bekal buka puasa (oats biscuit and a banana) coz I thought kelas habis pukul 6pm, mesti tak sempat sampai rumah punya... hai nasib baik lah terbaca e-mail from lecturer, reminding us all to submit the assignment and at the end of her e-mail: Have a nice break! Eh takde class ke hari ni??? So, I went and took out my course outline! Ceh! Semester break (2) dua minggu rupa-rupanya!!!! I was deceived because last semester it was only a week! Hai, nasib baik lah tak tunggu kat uni sampai waktu class! huhu....

Hmmm, begitu lah cerita saya for the past ten days in September. I must admit that I miss Malaysia so much and can't wait to finish my studies and go back.... I may want to apply for my Permanent Head Damage degree, but that will wait.... until I have submitted my dissertation! Please Allah, help me to achieve my dreams, please help me become a good and obedient Muslim, a good daughter, a good friend, a good teacher and lecturer, a good holistic person who knows how to be humble and grateful to you Allah, aameen ya rabbal 'alameen!

Okay, I need to pen off now!

P/S : Kepada semua muslimin dan muslimat, selamat meneruskan ibadah puasa dan ibadah-ibadah lain di Ramadhan yang penuh barakah ini! To Azie, thank you for the wishes, Ramadhan mubarak to you too dear!


Posted at 05:40 pm by Zamrud Zainal Abidin
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Sunday, August 31, 2008
Salam Kemerdekaan

Perpaduan Teras Kejayaan!

Salam Kemerdekaan yang ke 51 Malaysia!

Semoga Allah melindungi dan melimpahkan rahmat Nya ke atas bumi Malaysia tercinta. Amiin ya rabbal 'alamiin.

 


Posted at 03:55 pm by Zamrud Zainal Abidin
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Tuesday, August 26, 2008
My brave little frog

 

My best buddy sent me this..... I thought I might share this with you... It has given me good reasons to keep on HOPING for the BEST! InsyaAllah!

FROGS

Once upon a time there was a bunch of tiny frogs.... who arranged a running competition.

The goal was to reach the top of a very high tower.

A big crowd had gathered around the tower to see the race and cheer on the contestants....

The race began....

Honestly:

No one in crowd really believed that the tiny frogs would reach the top of the tower.


You heard statements such as:

"Oh, WAY too difficult!!"

"They will NEVER make it to the top."

or:

"Not a chance that they will succeed. The tower is too high!"



The tiny frogs began collapsing. One by one....

Except for those, who in a fresh tempo, were climbing higher and higher....


The crowd continued to yell, "It is too difficult!!! No one will make it!"

More tiny frogs got tired and gave up....

But ONE continued higher and higher and higher....

This one wouldn't give up!



At the end everyone else had given up climbing the tower. Except for the one tiny frog who, after a big effort, was the only one who reached the top!


THEN all of the other tiny frogs naturally wanted to know how this one frog managed to do it?



A contestant asked the tiny frog how he had found the strength to succeed and reach the goal?


It turned out....

That the winner was DEAF!!!!




The wisdom of this story is:

Never listen to other people's tendencies to be

negative or pessimistic.... because they take your most wonderful dreams and wishes away from you -- the ones you have in your heart!


Always think of the power words have.

Because everything you hear and read will affect your actions!


Therefore:


ALWAYS be....


POSITIVE!


And above all:

Be DEAF when people tell
YOUthat you cannot fulfill your dreams!

Always think:


I can do this!


Posted at 10:40 am by Zamrud Zainal Abidin
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