It is now 10pm. The sun has set and there's nothing but silence all around...literally. Most of the neighbours here have either gone back to their kampung or, for the non-Muslims, are away for a very long weekend. If ever an astronaut is looking at this planet - this housing area where I am, in particular - I figure it would be almost to akin to us looking at the stars, where those empty houses are the dark patches of the space in between. Hmm...kind of reverse astronomy; Earthonomy, perhaps? Better still, make it Malconomy, short for Malaysian Economy in shambles due to mismanagement by the Sarkas and Palah (read here).
Alhamdulillah, for the first since we moved here, the house received quite a number of guests for Raya. I have to admit though, I now make a poor host. Not for anything, but running between serving the dishes and chatting with guests, one sometimes miss out on the hints where a guest would prefer the company of the host rather than the food. Not that I consider myself perfectly adorable, but foods aplenty in any house one goes to. But a host being a host, a guest should be well treated with whatever food is available. The company, will have to take second place in between the running. It is for the same reason I have restricted myself from visiting friends, not wanting to let Emak run herself to the ground serving any guests that drops by. Emak being Emak, will never sit easy if a guest is not served well. Knowing that well now, I no longer extend invitations to friends to drop by - I feel guilty watching Emak working in the kitchen, something no one can ask her not to; Emak after all, will be 76 this November. Thus, to any friends reading this, please forgive me in not inviting you, and kindly understand the situation. Still, that does not mean one cannot drop by. Please do.
This year too marked a first for the family when Din brought over his IT stuff and had Aiman, his son, fix a temporary wireless router so that we can do video conferencing with Din's two daughters as well as Ana and family. But of Din's daughters, only Hanis vidcam was working while Ana was not at home. Still, it was nice to see and talk to Hanis as the last she came back was 4 years back. She is, Emak's first grandchild.
Another first is when a neighbour, Encik Mohamed, brought his daughters along for Raya. Now, the eldest daughter, Akmar, will be graduating soon and this is the first time I meet her. And wow, is she a beauty! Thus, as with front neighbour Halim's daughters visit earlier in the morning, I thought of doing a 'Salam Raya' with Akmar as well - one with the kiss kiss, hug hug - but had second thoughts. I mean Halim and I are quite close and know when each is merely playing around, but not with Mohamed. Not only is he a religious guy, but he is also the Khariat Kematian representative for this street. By chance should Akmar think I was serious and decide to 'Salam Raya' with me...aiyai yai! Tomorrow's headline might then read either "Cakapaje in shotgun marriage!', or 'Cakapaje shotgunned!". Certainly not a delightful 2nd Raya Day reading, but certainly better than this next part.
TV3 Raya greetings this year showed 2 cat burglars about to be caught by the husband-wife residents of a house. I quite like the greeting but only up to the part where one of the burglars replied to the husband's challenge, admitting that they were cats. Though not original, I thought the greeting was funny. But when the other burglar put his hand to the mouth and supposedly replied 'Baru habis puasa, jangan tambah dosa', I wonder who the message is intended for or to. Perhaps on a glance, one could say the message was well meant for the public not to commit crimes or sins. But since it supposedly came from one of the burglars and directed to the residents of the house, I really do wonder. Could it perhaps, actually be meant for Malaysians not to defend their properties and rights in the face of wrongdoings by the supposedly leaders of this country? A bit far fetched, I admit. Then again, consider these:
1. Seen throughout the nation, RTM1 had some Sarkas leaders leading the Takbir congegration. Again, perhaps one might not think much about it, I admit. But when I read LanH's column in the English Section of Harakah 29 Sept - 5 October, where a delegation of MCA leaders visited Harakah and asked the difference between Sarkas's Islam and PAS Islam, I see a link there somewhere, and that somewhere is as below.
Now, I don't know about the rest of the Sarkas leaders leading the Takbir but certainly saw that one guy from Bagan, in Perak, and the other guy from Selangor who fancies himself as a Mike Tyson. When you consider that in Islam, there are several criteria to be met before electing any person as an imam in prayers, and that the person's credentials must be distinctly clear of any vice or misdemeanour which is unbecoming of a leader, he two goon mentioned would fail misreably. Wasn't it reported that the Bagan guy physically whacked a young man just because he does not like the guy approaching his daughter? Even if he is being protective towards his daughter, punching the daylights out of the young man leaves lots of questions on this guy's credibility as a leader, and more certainly especially in leading a congregation.
Then there's that guy who fancies himself as Mike Tyson, wasn't he the guy who eloped with a princess, and they later married without the consent of the princess's wali, inviting the wrath of her father? If so, how could this guy be leading a congegration of people in singing praises to Allah s.w.t., when clearly, up to this date, there have been no admission nor signs of him - and the Bagan guy - regretting their actions? Well, in so far as I know, I have read none about it. As such then, it would especially interest non-Muslims to note that the types of these 2 goons will never be accepted as a leader within PAS or Islam, unless he shows clear signs of regret or repent. And simply by their continuing their association with the Sarkas, it shows they have not. And I have not a doubt in mind that Palah and that Bijan guy too would lead a congegration of their own.
2. For the past 20 years or more - since mid Madey's time - the Sarkas leaders have been giving Raya speeches. But as I remember prior to this, the speech was given by the King. I cannot remember about Merdeka Day speeches, but I would think it be so as well. But, if the Raya or Eidul Fitri is an Islamic celebration, how is it we have the Sarkas leaders giving speeches, seeing that it is they who espoused the separation of politics from Islam, which by the way, is what PAS is against as PAS would like to see Malaysia administered according to Islamic Principles? Should not the Raya speech be delivered by the King only, as he or his office is above politics? Because, I certainly do hate the Raya speech by the Sarkas leadership where their current leader has not absolved himself of nepotism and corruption, while another is seen by many as an accomplice to a murder; both, are certainly a no-no to leading a congregation of Muslims in prayers.
*3. Another thing, the sarkas through its tv stations, seem to propagate a different practice of Islam. For instance, during Ramadhan, they would show some religious programs which include tazkirah and Jejal Rasul series. But no sooner had Ramadhan come to an end, they begin broadcasting endless entertainment shows where where opposite genders mix freely and shake hands unbridled whereas in Islam, they are not supposed to. This does not come as a surprise since their top imam does exactly the same with a famous actress in a dinner party late last year. So, is there a diffence between Sarkas and PAS Islam? Plenty! There's just too many to be mentioned here.
Back to TV3 Raya greeting, this, is how I now view it: to manipulate and brainwash the minds of unwary young Malaysians into surrendering their just rights as a citizen to a nation rich not only in natural resources, but also the diversity of religion, race, and political belief. The TV3 Raya greeting, do not deserve the airtime, and I will certainly not give them any kiss kiss, hug hug...the sarkas leadership, most especially.
* Added 2/10/08. Almost forgot about it.
ps. Just in case a reader wonder quietly. No, I'm no firebrand preacher. In fact, I'm not fit to be even a preacher. Just someone with a thinking different from Sarkas.