We were on the way back to kampong for raya when my mom saw rubbish piling up in a neighbourhood next to ours. The majority that live in that neighbourhood and mine are Malays, whom are muslims obviously. Right from that my mom and dad discussed about the lack of Islamic approach in our society. Cleanliness is a part of iman .
“When they give talks,it is all about politics. Politics , politics , politics. They seldom touch about akhlaq or other things . “
I found this so true. You see sometimes I go to pray at the mosque and dang, they always talking about politics. I like politics but when I go to listen to talks after Maghrib , I want to listen to beautiful stories, lessons how to be a better muslim not political shits where you condemn others and spread the hatred. I want intellectual discussions , not some guy in jubah and ketayap screaming words and bashing other political party and say people who vote for the said party will enter hell.
I was educated at a religious school for my secondary education . If in west they have Christian high school , in Malaysia we have maahad (another name used for Islamic school). But it was prohibited in my school to give politics talks . I learnt so many wonderful things there . About my faith , the principle in Islam and how to adhere those in daily lives.
When I finished my high school , I got into asasi law . Since it is a preparatory for law schools , we had so many heated arguments there. I have friends who support LGBTQ and think that it should be allowed in Malaysia to apostate. Of course , me being fresh out from maahad couldn’t relate nor comprehend with what is happening outside my bubble. I stayed in hostel for five years and only spent little time at home.
Now, 3 years after leaving maahad ; I could relate with what is happening to our society. We are muslims because we were born into this religion. Some of us didn’t bother to learn more or deeper about our faith . Some think that being muslim is enough with covering aurat , praying 5 times a day and fasting in Ramadan . Being a muslim means more than that. However , I am not writing this to tell you what does it mean to be a muslim.
I could understand now where and how Sister In Islam , Shafiqah Othman and Maryam Ler emerged. It was rooted from how we teach Islam to the youngsters. How we preached the religion . Some said that Islam is too restrictive , there are too many rules to be followed and they felt it is a burden to become muslims.
It is the approach that we take. We focus too much on what is haram to do , we keep telling people that you cannot do this and that . To the point it appears that Islam is a religion full of rules and restrictions . How does one enjoy life if there are too many things that cannot be done?
Yes , whilst writing this I am aware with the hadith saying that the world is a heaven to the non-muslims and a prison to muslims ; referring to the religious rules that we ought to abide.
The concern now is how we adhere the teachings in our daily lives , and how our own society perceive Islam. Is it a way of life or just mere traditions done by our grandmothers and grandfathers.
As for me , for three years I wonder what kind of muslim I want to be. Referring to the clothes and how I bring myself as a person. Most of my teachers in maahad are strict , some of them are really sceptical towards those who choose not to don wide hijab and those who choose not to wear according to their standards. I am one of those who choose not to ,hehe . But of course when I went there I tried to wear the most appropriate clothes I could. Still , I wasn’t able to escape from some observant eyes , hence making me as the example of what we call failed products of maahad . You see, in my school we really really really take aurat seriously . After living in the outside world , I choose to be who I am today . Not too strict but not too loose either , I choose to be in the middle because it suits me best , it suits my personality and the kind of person I want to be.
To be identified as a muslim is honourable. Acknowlegding Islam as the way of life is a pride . Trying to adhere the teachings to the daily life is challenging.
So , what kind of approach do you wish for our teachers , our preachers , our ministers to take to make people, especially the youth fall in love with Islam and wish to practise it as a way of life rather just mere traditions?
p/s : I am trying to get my hands on Letters to a Young Muslim . I heard so many good reviews about the book and I believe it is the book that I can relate and appreciate well.