Madame Blossom's Book of Poems

Sunday, February 16, 2020

my mother's passing

My mom was a fighter. She had many conditions and sometimes some injuries, but she has always put up a brave and strong front. However she would shout, if the nurses did not treat her gently and causing too much pain. She was on dialysis 3 times a week for the last 2 years plus.

Last week, when her condition was very bad, she still held on for as long as she could.

I was on my way to the hospital, when the doctor called to ask me an urgent question, if my mom's heart stops beating, what do I want them to do? Do I want them to perform CPR or do whatever they can to force the heart to beat or do they do nothing? She was not getting any better. I said, I would call her back in an hour or two, to discuss with my brother and father first. She said, but they need an answer for now - if it happens now, before I call back, what do they do?

I said, ok, do nothing. It was last Thursday.

My mind went blank for a while. I am just hoping now that I can reach the hospital before anything happens. I updated my family.

My mom's heart was not beating well already, even a slow dialysis is putting too much for her heart. Not doing dialysis builds up toxin into her heart also. It's bad both ways. She is also not able to digest her liquid food well.

I accept her time is near. My father and I told the doctor that it is our hope that she could pass away after maghrib - because for the Muslim, it would mean a lot to pass away on a Muslim's Friday (which begins at maghrib). Of course we totally understand that she is only human and Allaah has decreed her death at a very specific time. (And for all people a term has been set: and when [the end of] their term approaches, they can neither delay it by a single moment, nor can they hasten it. 7:34) We can only now make doa.

We stayed by her side, and try not to say anything else, other than 'laa ilaaha illallaah' and 'allaah', stroking her forehead gently, hoping for her to be peaceful and not afraid - laa hawfun 3alaihim, wa laahum yahzanuun. Between that, I was making a very very earnest doa, that Allaah keep her going till maghrib. Please, let her go on a Friday. Please, make it easy for my mother. Please make her see beautiful things. Please forgive her and have mercy on her.

The doctor called me out at about 5pm plus, to inform me that her heart rate has started to fall. It may fall slowly, then a plateau, and then a sharp fall. I asked her how long sometimes that takes.. she said, it's still hard to tell, because it differs for people.. it could be 2 hours or even whole night. I thanked the doctor.

I went in and continue to make my earnest doa. We took turns to go down, to let the grandchildren and her in laws see her for the last time. Due to the outbreak, only 4 person allowed to visit at any one time.

While we are by her, we continued stroking her head, and uttering the important words. When she winced a bit, I'd read the doa for Allaah to relieve pain. and then I continued with 'allaah, allaah, laa ilaaha illallaah', still stroking her head gently. still earnestly in my heart praying for maghrib to come fast. Every second counted.

When I came back up for my turn, in the lift, maghrib approached. I rushed to the room - and the monitor showed 0. My brother said, she had just passed away. Just at the stroke of maghrib, it hit 0. And then the azan sounded from the phone, and the heart beat a bit more and back to 0. MasyaaAllaah. Alhamdulillaah. I kissed my mom's forehead, I forgot if I actually whispered, 'well done mak' but I was thinking it.

Mak passed away on 13th Feb 2020, doctor's record said : 7.36pm
By our record, it was 7.22pm Maghrib, 20 Jamadilakhir 1436H - a Friday full of barakah.

Alhamdulillaah, we also managed to arrange for her solat jenazah prayer to be held after the jumuah prayers at Pusara Aman Mosque - because I was really aiming for the many people who would be around to participate in the solat jenazah.

Alhamdulilaah, Thank you Allaah for answering all my prayers. Only by Allaah's mercy and will.

Please make doa for my mother - that Allaah forgive her and have mercy on her : Norliah Bte Abdullah.

Tuesday, January 28, 2020

guarding against viruses

Recently, Wuhan virus broke out. Even prior to this, there has been fatal viruses found over the years, like SARS, Mad Cow, Bird Flu etc. We have been asked to put on masks and wash our hands regularly to avoid being infected. Cleanliness is key.

Some significant viruses are airborne - spread through breathing, talking, coughing, sneezing, raising of dust, spraying of liquids, toilet flushing or any activities which generates aerosol particles or droplets (Wikipedia - airborne). Wuhan coronavirus is said to be transmitted through sneezing and coughing (CNA :Wuhan virus: What we know about the outbreak so far - 24 Jan 2020 ).

Thinking about these different and new viruses appearing every other year, brings to mind this hadith from Sahih Muslim, KITAB Al-ASHRIBA (THE BOOK OF DRINKS):

Jabir b. 'Abdullah reported Allah's Messenger (may peace be upon him) as saying: Cover the vessels and tie the waterskin, for there is a night in a year when pestilence descends, and it does not pass an uncovered vessel or an untied waterskin but some of that pestilence descending into it.

Initially, I imagined that the night it descends, the virus descends and settles in exposed water - but now I realise, it could be referring to the way it is being transmitted. Using the masks and washing of hands may be helpful, however, I find that the covering of our drinking vessels, e.g. jugs, glasses, cups etc is equally as important if not MORE important, but overlooked. You can wash your hands, however, if you don't cover your drinking containers, these airborne viruses can easily settle into your exposed drinks and then you consume it. Sounds like an obvious and definite way to get infected.

I am certain, masyaaAllaah, that God's words/advice in the Quran or through our Prophet S.A.W. is only for man's own good. It's just a matter of whether we know why or we don't. However, in God we trust. I believe it's important and advisable to learn and practise the sunnah, like not lying on your back, not blowing into your hot food and drink (wait till the food/drink is less hot before drinking) - wouldn't you be blowing carbon dioxide into your food and drink if you did?

Therefore, as an additional measure in protecting yourself against getting infected by these viruses, cover your drinking vessels (containers) amongst other known measures and tawakkal. May Allaah protect us all from unwanted illnesses.

Sunday, December 01, 2019

An attention span, shorter than that of a goldfish :(

This is a real problem!  It truly is.  I hope I can make it through posting this, without being distracted AT ALL.

In my prayers, I start by telling myself to focus and I end surah Al-Fatihah, already thinking about something else.   I try again and tell myself to focus during ruku' and I find myself, not even realising I've finished my 1st rakaat, deep in my train of thoughts of yet some other thing.   This is so bad.

Is there a doa to ask for focus?

I have discussed this predicament of ours before with others.  To me, our brains adapting to rapid changes in topics started from the NEWS, yes the news on television.  How we jump from one news to the next, from local happy news, to sad international news, to the weather.  We have started to train our minds and heart to move on quickly to the next thing.

Then FB, Twitter and IG came and ensured that the trend continued, and we have become worse. Scrolling from one post to the next, in an even shorter time than watching the news.

I actually now include in my doa (when I remember!) for Allaah to help me keep away from IG.   I've made doa for FB before - and alhamdulillaah, and may Allaah keep it that way - it has been answered and I am mostly off FB - unless I have to check it for some business related activity.  However I can easily leave it. Now my challenge is IG.

May Allaah help me, in keeping my focus, training our brains and heart to be in the moment, starting with solat and then everything else.  Mindfulness.   I must read back my mindfulness notes.

I have sometimes accidentally left my phone at home and would spend the whole day without the phone and it actually feels more peaceful.  I have intended to make it a regular practise to leave my phone at home once a week, for a start - but I haven't started.   So when I accidentally leave my phone at home - I am actually thankful.

Let's start a new trend - a handphone free day, we can pick which day works best for us.
(How to contact? share  your home/office landline number with important people, or send email - which you should check at some few hours interval only.)

May Allaah help us all.

Sunday, October 20, 2019

The Biology of Belief

I have just finished Bruce Lipton's 'The Biology of Belief'.  It's amazing.  The book starts of like a Biology text book in easy to understand terms - to explain factually and scientifically that is the foundation to understanding convincingly how beliefs can affect our life, that is our outlook in life, character, health and achievements.

There were some understanding of the professor, that was so in line with what is mentioned in the Quran and hadith.  One that comes to mind now,  you're not guilty of a wrongdoing, if you genuinely didn't know it was wrong.  

This book also tells us that prayers and meditation really do help calm a person which in turn is good for his mental and physical health.  Which leads me to think how God has always said in the Quran, what we believe and do (that God asks us to do) is only for our own good. :')    I am so very convinced, really beriman with the fact that whatever and every single act and details of what Allaah asks us to do, has some positive and beneficial effect on us - e.g. your exact postures and positions in prayers (which people don't pay much attention to).

I'm also happy to note that this scientist have argued against the dependency on pharmaceutical drugs that is quick to be on the shelves, without considering the overall effects on human.    After all these researches are also done by the imperfect human - their studies and findings are always limited to what they 'want' to find - and plagued with filters of information to the public - for whatever that is to their advantage.    The best medicine is your lifestyle, your beliefs, the environment and your food intake.   However the use of drugs are not totally ruled out - there are some real needs for drugs but most of them in emergency cases.  

The concept of placebo and nocebo effect is also explained and real cases provided.  The power of belief.

Reading some of the scientific findings and concepts in this and previous science books I've read always sparked some 'oooh' and 'aaah' moments.

Qada'and Qadar has been scientifically proven, the existence of a soul, and the different ways in which Rasulullaah SWT received the revelations made real sense now. Subhanallaah, if course God the Creator is so much more advanced in knowledge and means than the most advanced things that exists now. After all, all advanced technologies are also derived from nature.

I have wondered before if we can download and upload thoughts.  the book says that are already some scientific studies on downloading thoughts - since basically we are all masses of energy, and information in our brains are also energy being transmitted from one neuron to another.
I would love to download what I've learnt from my life and from books  - basically whatever understanding that Allaah has granted me, to my children and those who are interested.

Explaining them all may be overwhelming.  I may seem crazy, and it's too much info to tell in one seating.   This reminds me of the words of Jesus A.S. in the bible - "I have many things to say unto you, but you cannot bear them now." People really need to be ready to receive, then only they can receive.

When we are humble, we learn more.

May Allaah increase for us, our knowledge and understanding, of the deen which is life here and in the Hereafter. Aamiin.

Tuesday, October 01, 2019

Independence from the people

I'm currently reading a book "Ten Arguments for Deleting Your Social Media Accounts Right Now" by Jaron Lanier.

It speaks of the ills of social media, such as us being manipulated by the social media's algorithms to tweak our feelings and convince or put us in such a situation where we are inclined to buy or react to something.

The other ill mentioned that was interesting to me is the unrealistic expectations about life when seeing others post fake photos of happiness or perfection or put out fake personas. How we are unknowingly affected by them and it affects us in our self-esteem and how we value our own lives. Sometimes we even know it's fake, but can't help feeling affected.

Coincidentally, I am currently pondering over a hadith* about life - and the last part of the hadith says '.. the pride of a believer is in his independence from the people." How apt.

INDEPENDENCE FROM THE PEOPLE - is to me, when you're not easily influenced or affected by your surrounding and the people around you, be it offline or online. You are self-assured, masyaaAllaah and your iman is strong (aamiin) - you can read and see them, but it does not have much impact on you. You're quick to realise and get back to reality which is to serve God and do good.  Be  yourself.

Then it all boils back down to how we live our life. If we live it sincerely for God, there can be all kinds of challenges in the world, and all kinds of influences but we will not be brought down by it. We may be challenged, but we can overcome them insyaaAllaah and we get back up and move on to our greater purpose.

In the remembrance of Allaah, do hearts find peace.

* the hadith
Sahl ibn Sa'd As-Saidiy said: Jibril came to the Prophet s.a.w. and he said : Jibril, upon him be peace, came to me and said, 'Oh Muhammad, live as you wish, for you shall eventually die.  Love whom you desire, for you shall eventually depart.  Do what you please, for your shall pay.   
Then Jibril said : Oh Muhammad, the honour of a believer is his night-prayer, and his pride is his independence from the people."
(Al Hakim )
I got this hadith from the book HD40 : LIFE, compiled by Ustaz Hidayat Radja Nurul Bahri.  He advised me that all the hadith mentioned in this book is sahih.