Madame Blossom's Book of Poems

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Suicide note

Last few months Leen gifted me a book "Mind at Peace".  These are writings by Muslim mental health patients who have recovered or are recovering.
Although one has recovered, there is still a chance of relapse.
It was an eye-opening book.  For these patients, the major anecdote to their conditions have been the Words of God, remembrance of God and knowing God.
The other day, I met with Leen again, with Nuryn and Saleha.  This time Saleha gave me a book titled ,"Aku Nabi Isa" (I am Prophet Jesus). It's another book about mental illness, this time written by a Muslim psychiatrist.  At the rate my sisters are giving me books on mental health, people may think I have some mental issues - I don't.   I think I don't.
The first topic in this book is suicide. Which is the main intended subject of this post.
I just wanted to note that, it's no wonder that suicide is a very big sin. For one to commit suicide, one must have lost all hope in life, and their faith in God.
There is an ayat in the Quran, in surah Yusuf that man translates to "... and never give up hope of Allah's Soothing Mercy: truly no one despairs of Allah's Soothing Mercy, except those who have no faith." (12:87).
For Muslims who read, ponder and practise the advice given in the Quran, they'll understand that :
1. This life is a test.
2. You'll not be tested with more than that you can bear.
3. In everything that happens to us, there is a hikmah (a good reason with good outcome, a blessing if you persevere). The hikmah may be apparent and realised soon, or much later in life, or you may not realise it at all, if you are not observant and grateful.
4. As a Muslim, trusting God and His plans, leaving the outcome to Him after putting our effort, is essential. Muslims would be familiar with "tawakkaltu 3alallaah" -  In God I put my trust.
5. We are not alone, especially when in suffering, God hears our calls.  God is closer to us than our jugular veins.
If a practising Muslim reminds himself of these things constantly, it will anchor in his heart and even if suicide crosses their mind, they will quickly remind themselves of the purpose of our lives and that God is always with us.
This is the best we can do, and still, Allaah has power over all things.
Don't lose faith, have hope. 
Darks days are moments, dark thoughts appear in moments, and moments will pass. 
Even suicidal thoughts appear in moments, hang on for a while and let those moments pass.
Put your trust in God.

p.s. Even practising Muslims, may in the spur of the moment, while in despair, forget about Allaah's mercy.  That's where reading back, or reminders from good sincere friends come in handy.   May we be under Allaah's care and guidance always.

Thursday, December 15, 2016

Looking forward

Looking forward to a time that may or may not come.
Forgetting to live the moment, wasting time.

~Madame Blossom ~

Subatomic supersonic spaces in between.

Random. Not really related.
I was just suddenly reminded of this cool line by Jason Mraz.
A songwriter, a thinker, a poet, a genius with words.

Monday, December 12, 2016

I don't want to be a monster.

Recently there was a video on Facebook, of a road rage in Singapore. A man was so unhappy, that a car on the main road, did not allow him to overtake his car to filter out to the main road.
He went on to drive on the road shoulder to overtake the car anyway and stopped abruptly in front of the car, obstructing other vehicles too. He came out to throw vulgarities and scolded the driver.

When I saw that video, I was reminded of myself. I had been angry the other day at the Tuas Checkpoint queue, when I was trying to keep to my lane, and motorcycles are inching their way onto the car lane. I kept on just going straight, and one of the motorcycles had inched a bit too much and my side mirror hit his. He moved a bit in front of me and said, ‘stupid’. The truth is, that evening I had not been in a good mood and the car air-conditioner was not working. I scolded him back and asked him, how cars are going to pass if they kept going into the only 2 car lanes? He said, “stupid” again. I told him, yes, I’m stupid and he is so clever! Forced a sarcastic smile and moved on.

However, after that, I felt a bit sad, that I had been like that. I wish I had maintained my cool… which was tricky being in a hot car. The guy dressed and looked like your regular nice workshop guy. He was probably tired too, trying to get home as soon as he can.

What is turning us, regular people, into inconsiderate users and some into monsters on the road? If I had to analyse the situation, based on me, I was tired and hot. I’m normally not like that.
It’s sad that the stress of living in this place, is turning me into that kind of person, when caught in a situation.

I really, really wonder if people in other countries are as stressful as people working/living in Singapore.

Allaah has planned it all, right? I need to find my contentment point. Happiness is being contented. Happiness can be achieved when having enough for your daily/monthly needs.
I’m working towards that – towards getting rid of unnecessary pressures. I’m putting my trust in Allaah, it’ll all work out. Aamiin.

That man, from the video, I wonder what his story is. What happened before he started driving that day. He probably had some bottled up stress, and that incident, it just passed his threshold.

To the motorcyclist, I’d like to smile sincerely at him if I see him again. If I can remember his face.

My jihad (struggle) continues, to be the woman I’d like to be. Aamiin.

Sunday, December 04, 2016

What are we looking for?

It used to be called 'surfing'.
We go from one site to another, one blog to another.
Now, it's scrolling.
We're in that same damn site for easily, an hour, just scrolling.
But we don't know what exactly, we're looking for.
What exactly will satisfy us.
When exactly it will satisfy us.
And we still haven't found what we're looking for.

Saturday, December 03, 2016

It all comes back to...

I remember the past.

I was not the girl I wish I was. And now, I am not the woman I wish I am.

I want to be more consistent, more firm, more calm.

I am quite weak.  I sometimes easily sway with the soft breeze.  ('.... hold your station').

There are things that I still remember clearly that I wish I have never said or done.   Mostly with clinging on to something that does not belong.   I wish I was stronger.  I wish I had a clearer mind and heart.   I wish it was a clean and nice cut.   I always linger a bit too long.

I guess I want to feel that I'm wanted, and to be acknowledged.

I know God will acknowledge.  Some of my wishes and prayers were answered clearly.  And God has saved me, in many many ways that I realise, and many more ways that I have not realised or will never realise.

In the end, it's Allaah whom I want to love and it's Allaah whom I want to be loved by.

Friday, December 02, 2016

Iman, Islam, Ihsan

I remember clearly, learning about Iman (the 6 pillars of faith) and Islam (the 5 basic obligations as a Muslim).   However I don't remember learning about Ihsan.

Ihsan was part of what Jibril A.S. taught Muhammad S.A.W. and his companions, along with Iman and Islam.   I find it now, to be as important as understanding Iman and Islam.

Ihsan, to understand it in the English language is, 'most good', 'excellence'.

Jibril A.S. taught us, how to achieve it, in the famous 'hadith Jibril'.  "It is that you should serve Allah as though you could see Him, for though you cannot see Him, yet He sees you."

Serving Allaah, as we know, is not only when we do our solat, or that we are fasting, or when we do zikir / recite the Quran etc.

Living as a Muslim is serving Allaah. Allaah created us to worship Him.   As such, Ihsan, is to be applied in our daily life, in everything good we do.   The highest level of Ihsan, or excellence is when one does things, consciously aware that God is watching him.   As such, he does the best he can, and with sincerity, since we also know that Allaah knows what is in our hearts.

When we live in excellence, all our outputs, whether it be at home or at work, or in our community, will be the best we can provide. It may not be perfect, but it is the best to our ability.

Ihsan covers ALL aspects of our life, it is impossible to list everything that can be done with Ihsan.

Sometimes when I write about living, and what is taught in the Qur'an, it becomes overwhelming for me.  Many ayats come to mind, and then another related ayat.  Allaah taught us, so much in the Qur'an, if only we listen.

Overwhelming.. if all of the ocean in this world is the ink, and all of the trees in the world are pens, it will not be enough to cover Allaah's words / knowledge.  Even if you multiply them seven times over.

I have digressed.

What made me think that, was when I was thinking of one example of excellence.  You see, you, picking up a trash you see on a pathway, and putting it in the bin - or clearing a dangerous object is excellence.  That is excellence in being a human being, excellence in being a part of the environment and your community.  It's subtle, but it's excellence.    And this kind of subtle excellence and act of kindness is also explained in Al-Maun'.  A short surah on small acts of kindness.

Of course it doesn't stop there.  There are just too many examples and lessons and guidance given to us, in achieving Ihsan.

May we learn Ihsan, may we learn them all, through the ayats in the Quran, through the ayats in nature, through the teachings of our Prophet S.A.W. with the will of Allaah SWT.  Aamiin.

p.s. what triggered this thought?  MasyaaAllaah - actually just something simple that happened at work. We have options at work.  We can do our best, to complete our tasks to the best of our ability. Or we can try to push the work away, creating minor excuses, asking unnecessary questions and quoting problems that may or may never arise.  As a Muslim practising Ihsan, we should try to do our tasks and help others to the best of our ability.

Salam Jumuah!