Tuesday, January 31, 2006Fahmi,Amir Etc and a non-blogging friend Zainaldin Zainal sent me SMS wishing me a blessed Maal Hijrah. Thank you friends. In the excitement of the new Lunar Year, not many people remember Maal Hijrah. Somehow, the Muslim New Year does not create as much excitement as, say the Gregorian Calendar new year's day. There has never been a countdown in Dataran Merdeka for Maal Hijrah. There are no new year resolutions. Maybe this is because the closing of book and opening another is usually made during Nisfu Syaaban. Resolutions, if any, will be made during the night.
But it is perfectly alright to make resolutions for Maal Hijrah.No ministers are going to send you memoranda if you do. What kind of resolutions should you make? Well, you can promise to be better muslims. Resolve to be a mukminin. Do what the religion wants us to do.
For a start, practise cleanliness. We are told to be clean before we pray, we are told to eat clean and healthy food and of course live a clean life. So, take care of our toilets and take care of our environment.
Islam also teaches us to be caring persons. Somewhere in the good book it is mentioned that you cannot call yourself beriman if you let your neighbour go hungry. This year, let us not hear anymore of any of our brothers or sisters (and their children) resorting to eating slugs to survive.
Contrary to Western labels, there are no Extreme Islam or Liberal Islam. Islam is what is spelled out in the Quran and Hadith. The Prophet (peace be unto him) taught us to do everything in moderation. This does not make us Moderates. Wherever you are on the spectrum, this year you must try to be a living example of what Islam is. Do not do anything that will make other Muslims be ashamed and make the non-Muslim friends lose respect for your religion.
Finally, do your best to explain what Islam is. People fear the unknown and sometimes ignorance make it worse. So, as Muslims, let us try to learn as much as we can about the religion. Then you can explain better. Please be careful though not to create the impression that you are trying to convert your non-muslim friends. Islam does not need the numbers and never forces anyone to be Muslims. People who converted did so without a senapang gajah held to their head.There has never been any Spanish Inquisition thing in the history of Islam. Do not mess with history.
Hijrah means "move". Let us move to better things in 1427. Amin!