Madame Blossom's Book of Poems

Friday, May 30, 2008

don't speak

Don't speak for the sake of speaking.

And don't speak without thinking.

And don't speak arrogantly.

And don't speak too soon.


Wednesday, May 28, 2008

on ringtones (again)

sometimes, it's funny. sometimes cute. but only for the 1st few times.

I have a case on why you should not use your kid's voice as a ring tone, although we do love them oh-so-much. In fact, BECAUSE we love them, we should't use their voice, so as to avoid the situation I'm going to share below.

There was this case (another case - not the one mentioned before). The ringtone was the son's voice, saying 'mummy, pick up the phone'. And as with all ringtones, it repeats itself. I guess the ringtone, was especially for when the son calls. Let's name the son, 'Ali'.

So this woman.. she was busy on the office phone, when her hp started to ring. It was her son : "Mummy, pick up the phone..... Mummy, pick up the phone.... Mummy, pick up the phone.... Mummy, pick up the phone...".

By the third repeat, It started to sound, to me, as if the boy was pestering her to answer the phone. I realised she felt that way too, when right after her office call, she answered the phone, clearly irritated, "YES Ali?! Mummy was on the phone..."

Poor boy, it's not like he knew.. he only called ONCE.

See, proven case.

If you still want to hear your children's voices, perhaps you can use their voices in other non-irritating way.
Maybe, you can have the kids saying 'ring ring... ring ring..' instead. It wouldn't sound too whiny, I think.

The best test would be this : Before you decide to use a recorded voice as a ringtone, or ANY ringtone for that matter - let it ring and repeat it self at least 3 times. Then do that 2 more times. See how you feel about it. If you still feel absolutely fine, or you actually enjoyed it - then go ahead. Otherwise, be considerate and don't make others feel what you felt.

Toenote : I seriously have nothing against children! And I seriously have nothing serious against people using children's voices as ringtones. I seriously don't feel THAT irritated, that I would go over and slam the hp to the ground or.... simply shut it off. No.. no. I seriously don't and won't.

It's just one of those small, mundane matters that i sometimes ponder over (like stirring tea).
But even though it's mundane, it COULD raise our level of consideration for others a teeny weeny bit.

* The name used is in no way related to anyone I know, dead or alive. Any resemblance is purely coincidental, masyaAllah.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Hanaa's trip

Hanaa has been selected by her school to go to Batam, to help do up a play area for a primary school there. She departed this morning and has called to inform that she has already arrived safely there. Alhamdulillah.

I think... yes it is! the first overseas trip for her, without family! I reminded her to look after her stuff well (because I will not be there to pick up after her) and not forgetting to do her daily prayers. She has requested her teacher earlier, to group her with her two other Muslim friends (Sara and Huda) so, that they can comfortably do their daily prayers in their room together.

I have always said that I want my children to be exposed to humanitarian or charity work. I want the children to see, how children in other countries are, and how thankful we should be. As such, I am glad for this opportunity to come her way.

I hope she will learn some, and have fun too.

Can't wait for her to be back this Friday, safely. InsyaAllah. Ameen.

Monday, May 26, 2008

comfort & material progress : the real deity?

I am currently reading 'The Road to Mecca' by Muhammad Asad, which I may write more on, after I'm done devouring it. I love it, and I'm only one fifth through.

I just feel the need to highlight this part (although the other parts are just as interesting and/or thought-provoking) because I see too, that this is how most of us are, in the world today. He was describing the state of the European youths, of which he was one, in the 1920s..

It's real deity, I saw, was no longer of a spiritual kind : it was Comfort..... the manual worker or the intellectual seem to know only one positive faith : the worship of material progress, the belief that there could be no other goal in life than to make that very life continually easier.... The temples of that faith is the gigantic factories, cinemas, chemical laboratories, dance-halls, hydroelectric works; and it's priests were the bankers, engineers, politicians, film stars, statisticians....

....I saw how confused and unhappy our life had become...

And in today's world, the pull towards those false deities, is even greater than ever. We MUST keep ourselves in check.

Questions we need to ask ourselves every time:

1. Are we truly happy, contented, sure of ourselves, our needs and wants?
(2-3 hours of sheer happiness or blissfulness with friends without any care for the world, against a whole week of emptiness, loneliness and confusion when you're alone, does not count as 'true happiness', For those are really only ILLUSIONS of happiness and they are so short-lived.)

2. Where are we heading to?

3. Who (or what) do we sacrifice most of our time and effort for? Who do we serve? Who is our real deity?

May Allah makes us and always keep us among the guided. Ameeeeen.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

the orange moon


someone called and asked me to go look at the moon.


Have you ever noticed an orange moon before? Subhanallah, it's beautiful. But it scares me a bit too - thinking of kiamat.

Apparently what causes the moon to appear orange, or sometimes yellowish or even red, is that the atmosphere close to the ground is, basically polluted. There are too many dust particles, so some of the moon's light, (red, orange, yellow, blue, green and purple - which together appears white), get refracted away. And the colour that reaches us, are usually the red, orange or yellow.

So be happy if u see a white moon near the horizon, it shows that the atmosphere is clear :P


Blessed be He Who hath placed in the heaven mansions of the stars, and hath placed therein a great lamp and a moon giving light! - Al Quran, Al Furqan 25:61

Monday, May 19, 2008

have workdesk, will achieve.. insyaAllah :p

Alhamdulillah.. 2nd last semester is over. Last semester is hopefully the simplest. For now, I can do or read whatever I want, without having the guilt of not studying instead.

I've been wanting to do so much, but not doing it. Most of the time, I'm blaming it on not having a proper place to work at home. I don't have a work desk. I don't know if you think it is a good excuse, but I cannot achieve much, doing work on my bed - I always end up sleepy. And the common computer table is hot property.

So I'm looking forward to the new house, where I will have my own workstation in my room :) I'm dreaming hoping planning determined to do and achieve more, while I'm there, insyaAllah.

I was trying to write about what I'm trying to achieve.. but I deleted them. There were too many ideas and aspirations, for the betterment of myself, my family, the world and for Muslims. Too many ideas sometimes, I laugh at myself. Let me try to achieve.. one at a time...or maybe two.

Some pics.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

stirring in sugar 101

You know when we go to restaurants or hotels or even some coffee shop, we are served tea/coffee and we have to stir in the sugar ourselves?

And there is a certain methodology that we should adopt in stirring sugar - so as to appear civilised and courteous, and avoid drawing too much attention to ourselves by making so much noise.

Stirring using the mamak methodology,i.e. by positioning the spoon sideways and going back and forth vigorously, is out of the question. It WILL create too much sound that people may think, you want to make an urgent announcement or speech.

We are taught or told to stir in a circular motion - it's quieter. But the problem is, it takes donkey years longer (and I'm exaggerating a bit here) for the sugar to dissolve completely.

Not a problem anymore.
I have come out with a bloss methodology, where you can achieve both quiet-civilised-courteous way of stirring AND have the sugar dissolve in the same timing as it would using the mamak methodology!

Now, what you do is, you hold the spoon facing you, then you move it from one side of the cup to the other side, in a wave like manner. The turning at each end, should not be sharp or jerky, but should be in a circular motion to avoid any spillage. If you do it exactly as I've told/shown you, you can stir it FAST, and I guarantee you (insyaAllah) the tea/coffee will not spill. Nor will you make any noise, because it is easy to avoid hitting the sides, stirring it this way - due to the pressure of the liquid against the spoon.

Best of all, in 2-3 rounds, of course provided that the tea/coffee is still HOT, the sugar would have, all, dissolved.

This method was tried and tested just now. 2 sachets of sugar were used in this R&D project.

Next time, you all try lah.
Can try at home also.
Practise makes perfect.

*methodology - just another fancy word for method.
The after effect of attending an IT seminar. This is another thing to blog about. BIG WORDS.


Wednesday, May 14, 2008

to want to walk in the rain

it's raining. alhamdulillah.

if not for the fact that I'm going to work, I'd be walking in the rain. :\


Sunday, May 11, 2008

struggling to surrender

yesterday, hubby and I, went to listen to Jeffrey Lang, talk on 'struggling to surrender'. He was born a catholic, turned atheist and then became a Muslim.

He became an atheist because he had this very big issue with what's happening in the world. If there is a God, he questioned, why then do people have to suffer? He contented himself, by believing that there was probably no God, therefore the sufferings. It was an easy way out.

the talk yesterday, was about how he perceived the Quran, while he was still an atheist. As a mathematician, he placed even more thought and depth into each and every word he reads in the Quran. He spoke about his train of thoughts, as he reads the verses from the Quran. I can't list them all, it'd be too long. But it was interesting. I'm sure it's there in his books.

And from the Quran, he began to understand and accept the reason for the trials and tribulations of our earthly lives and our roles here. He surrenders himself to Allah. This is the journey of a person, who sincerely wants to find the Truth. And God guides whom He wills.

His talk, inspires me to draw more guidance, by reading the Quran - not just reading the Arabic words.. but also to understand the very meaning of the verses.

Do we, borned Muslims, understand and accept our lives as he does?
Do we seek our guidance from the Quran, the Book of Guidance? Guidance for the muttaqin (those who earnestly try to ward off evil).
Are we among the muttaqins?

May we be among the muttaqins, the guided. Ameen.

p.s. n2f, i can't discuss the many interesting views of the verses, he spoke about here. Too many side comments that I have with it. Too long to dwell into here. We'll discuss it when we meet. insyaAllah. :)

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

perfect, I'm not

Shuts. I think I've been saying quite a few redundant things. Or passing a comment that will not do any good, other than to just say something.

No, actually I DO have an idea in mind - the intention was to stir the mind and heart, create awareness. But I need to work on my approach and the words chosen. Some words may sound too extreme. 'blind', 'ignorant'?

But I'm sure, those who know me, and Allah, knows all, know that I mean no harm. Anyhow, I have to try to be sure, that what I do and what I say, is only for the better. Refrain from thoughtless speech or deeds, and especially refrain from any negative intention. And it should apply everywhere, even at home with my family. InsyaAllah.

Perfect, I'm definitely not. But work on it, I must.

Yoda, I'm not.
Even if it seems like I'm beginning to sound like him. :S

Narrated by Abu Hurayrah:
The Prophet Muhammad SAW said: “Anybody who believes in Allah and the Last Day should not harm his neighbor, and anybody who believes in Allah and the Last Day should entertain his guest generously, and anybody who believes in Allah and the Last Day should talk what is good or keep quiet.“
Sahih Al Bukhari, Vol: 8 Hadith 47.

marry fedi or fahri?

Just talking about blinded - some people are REALLY blinded by the media. They cannot distinguish between what is real and what's not.

For ayat2 cinta the movie, fedi (the actor/model/musician) acts as fahri (the religious man IN THE MOVIE). Now some mothers are asking that fedi (the actor/model/musician) marry their daughters! Some ladies have said that they even don't mind being the THIRD OR FOURTH wife!*

And he is not even married yet.
AND he IS not like fahri in real life - although we pray that he'll be, insyaallah.


wake up! wake up!

*source from New Paper ke.. berita harian.

Monday, May 05, 2008

blinded by tv?

: Nadh tengah buat apa?

> tengok tv!

: cerita apa?

> Tadi baru habis Barney, abis sekarang Fire trucks.

: Hmmmmph.. ok, lepas ni pegi baca buku pulak.

> Kenapa?

: Tak nak lah, asik tengok tv aje..

> Kalau tengok tv aje, nanti mata kita buta?

: Ha? :D ... takde lah buta.  cuma nanti tak pandai sangat.


Come to think of it though.. it can make us 'buta' (blind).

Blind in the sense that, we don't see the real world. And our main purpose in life, is left obscure.

When we watch too much tv, our views are veiled.  

Veiled by... the bland dramas, the exaggerrated movies, the only-in-your-dreams heros, the unbelievably-flawless heroines, the as-if-bigger-than-life stars, the loud music, the endless entertainment, the not-so-real-reality tv shows, the basically-going-after-ball(s) sports, the overrated advertisements, the one-sided opinionated news.  

That's a bit too much, don't you think?

I'm sure we have so many other, more useful and important things to accomplish - than to stay rooted for HOURS in front of that stationary black box*, and continue to be blinded.

*yeap..sometimes it's silver and slim.


you can call me erni

People need to realise or be educated, that not all names, are constructed like the westerner's names.

BS : Your name?

me : Erni M Kasim

BS : Ms Kasim, blah blah blah

me : You can call me Erni. Kasim is my father.

Everytime they call me by my father's name, I'll correct them insyaAllah.  

Friday, May 02, 2008

ayat ayat cinta

I knooow.. you guys have been talking about it like years and months ago. but i just saw the movie. I haven't read the book yet. Now I'm interested to own and read the book.

what do i think of the whole story? it's intelligently done. Subtly educational and informational. Truly inspirational.

As for the movie, I like it. And I have a few observations. Positive ones first.

1. I love it that in the movie, the actors and actresses quoted some verses from the Quran and hadith that supports their action or speech in those scenes.

2. For the first time, I see polygamy being portrayed in a positive light, in the movies. And they did not fail to also share some inevitable issues in polygamy - such as jealousy and fairness.

3. And the Aisya's emotional strengths and weaknesses - is inspirational to me. Made me cry. I always cry watching scenes where a woman tries and/or succeeds to withhold her emotions and needs, for the benefit of others. I want to be like that.

4. Apart from that, it feels like that hero, is in heaven and surrounded by bidadaris - cause all the leading ladies in the movie are extremely pretty. =D

Now, the not so positive ones..

1. The movie teaches us about some dos and don'ts in Islam - e.g. touching a non muhrim of the opposite sex is forbidden, and here in the movie, the actor and actresses are *sigh* touching each other. Yes, yes.. they are 'married in the movie' but that DOES NOT change the fact that they are ACTUALLY NOT. SO, it's ironic in that way. This part, I'm disappointed. The movie, it's not walking the talk.

2. They could have done much much better with the selection of the voice for the Quran recitation by the guy. Tak payah over. It was painfully obvious that it's not his voice.

That's all about the movie. I dont' want to reveal too much, for the benefit of those who don't know about the story yet.

As for the author of the book, Habiburrahman El Shirazy, I think he is brilliant. Actually, when they were talking about how good the book is and briefly what it was about, I thought it was written by someone in the Middle East or something, and translated to Malay. I am surprised to learn that the author is a young man from Indonesia.

This book, ought to be translated to other languages and distributed all over - like The Kite Runner. I'm quite sure it'll be a hit. InsyaAllah.