Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Gangnam Style: A Question of Originality

Assalamualaikum wbt.

1. Much has been said about Oppa Gangnam Style. Some people opine that it is fun and likable, while some others prefer to think otherwise.

2. What is my response when people ask me mine?

3. Simple. I don't have problem with Oppa Gangnam Style. 


4. Oppa Gangnam Style has a problem with me. Why?

5. Despite reaching millions of people and indulging a huge acceptance plus YouTube viewership across the globe, it is neither attractive nor enjoyable to me. It has failed to amuse me. Poor Oppa Gangnam Style. 

6. Hence, one point of demerit there for Oppa Gangnam Style. I assume it won't affect its rating though. After all, that doesn't really matter to me.

7. Let us now discuss Oppa Gangnam Style through my personal lens (please return my lens back after you finish. Thank you).

PART 1: Being Genuine 

8. I believe, we are actually dealing with a question of originality here. 

9. Beautifully enough, originality (according to English dictionary) has two meanings and both of them perfectly match the two different qualities I plan to elaborate in the first part of this article.

10. In general, originality can be defined as follows:

                         a) the quality or state of being original
                         b) the ability to think independently and creatively

11. Let's address each given definition above one by one.

First definition

12. With regard to being original, I would argue that we are most pure and original when we were born. Why? Because we were in the state of fitrah when we were still a baby. Fitrah means the innate nature of ourselves.

13. It is the environment and the process of our upbringing that shape us to be what we are today. So how do we maintain that fitrah we were born with?

14. Like all electronic devices that come with their own user manual, we were also created with our very own 'user manual', which in Islam we believe are the Quran and sunnah of Nabi SAW.

15. These two sources provide us the only ways to remain original as human being by living a way of life called Islam.

16. And why is it that Islam is the only way of life again? Because we are a creation. And definitely, Allah SWT as our Creator, He knows best and full well about what is best for His creation. And because He has made Islam as our way of life, we shall then submit to His perfect will.

17. Let's study the verse below from Surah Ar-Rum ayah number 30:

18. The above passage of the Quran clearly mentions that Islam is the way of life that suits our fitrah. It says, "So direct your face toward the religion, inclining to truth. (Adhere to) the fitrah of Allah upon which He has created (all) people. No change should there be in the creation of Allah. That is the correct religion, but most of the people do not know."

19. So how do we assess Gangnam Style from here? Isn't Islam too narrow-minded if it prohibits Gangnam Style?

20. Firstly, I don't see any threat or disposal of originality if we don't want to do Gangnam Style. Meaning, without Gangnam Style, we are still original aren't we?

21. Secondly, if Gangnam Style is taken as a form of entertainment or a form of exercise, all of you would agree with me that even if Gangnam Style has never existed on earth, we have plenty other examples as alternatives (for entertainment and exercise).

22. The point I want to highlight here is that, those who can not live without Gangnam Style, they are actually narrow-minded, not Islam. Because they only keep one option in mind- Gangnam Style ;-)

23. Next, no one can live alone without searching for an example. 

24. I would strongly argue that even all inventions we have on earth until today, through the imagination of the great scientists and inventors, are inspired from what they see around them. These are examples that help them come up with new ideas and innovation.

25. Let's take a simple example. The aircrafts. The fact that they have wings, isn't that similar to a bird? Ask ourselves; Which one existed first, a bird (creation of Allah) or an aeroplane (creation of men)?

26. The point here is that we need to follow an example given by the original Creator, and in the case of BEING A TRUE MAN (woman included of course), we already have one.

27. It is the great Mercy of Allah SWT that He has chosen the best of creation, Muhammad SAW as the best good example (uswatun hasanah) for all of us mankind.

Second definition

28. So now we have come to the second meaning of the word originality above i.e to think independently and creatively.

29. To be independent and creative doesn't mean that we have to come up with something completely new, out of nowhere.

30. That is virtually impossible.

31. Of course, we are susceptible to the condition of our society, and peer pressure.

32. However, there's one way to be independent, creative and be the one who shapes the society instead.

33. That one way is through knowledge.

34. When it comes to Gangnam Style lyrics for instance, do we understand the lyrics?

35. If we don't, then we ignore this aspect of KNOWledge i.e do we even know what we are singing about?

36. Some may argue that they understand every single word in the lyrics, but the next question is, do we have any idea on what is behind the meaning?

37. Let me cut it short here.

38. I skimmed through the English version of the lyrics and would like to comment that it has this essence of making women as an object of sex (and the video clip undoubtedly testifies to this).

39. This is to me a complete disregard towards women, which I shall elaborate more about it in the second part below.

40. Just to end this part again, we as Muslims should learn and practice the sunnah of Nabi SAW because that is the knowledge we are looking for.

41. Being independent here means that whatever we do in life, we do it because we base it on a strong and pure knowledge of Islam and we are in no way affected or influenced by external forces, especially when they contain matters which are against our deen (Islam).

42. Before I begin the second part, please ponder on the profound saying of Nabi SAW below.

43. The prophet (S.A.W.) said, "You will surely follow the ways, steps, or traditions of those who came before you, span by span and yard by yard (very closely) even if they entered a lizard's hole you will enter it." The companions asked, "Oh prophet, you mean the Jews and Christians?" so he answered, "Who else!" 
(Reported by Imam Bukhari)

PART 2: Women as sex object

44. I think this is the most interesting part of the sharing I want to make in this article.

45. Once I posted on my Facebook wall, that I believe, Oppa Gangnam Style, like many other form of entertainment are not free from making women as an object of sex.

46. What this means is that, women are reduced, from a status of being a complete human, into a sub-human, or less a human, or an object- which in this case refers to an object of sex.

47. This is rampant almost everywhere.

48. On the billboards along the roads. On posters. On walls of shopping malls. Newspapers. Magazines. You name it, you get it.

49. Free show. Big show.

50. So what is the value of our women in our society nowadays?

51. Are they created only for the purpose of sex?

52. Excuse me if that sounds harsh, but the truth is even more harsh.

53. And I don't like this kind of harshness.

54. I believe women and their femininity are the greatest gift from God.

55. As a Muslim, I value women highly because Islam places the status of mother for instance, above all others.

56. And I tell you what. My mother, like yours, is a woman. We should never let them or even our sisters or even ourselves (if you are women) to be regarded only as an object.

57. In the video clip of Gangnam Style, the fact that the dance resembles riding a horse, symbolically makes women as the horses.

58. Seriously, do you not get it?

59. This is the biggest reason why I am completely switched off the moment I come across Gangnam Style. Really, I am not interested. May Allah protect us all ameen.

60. To end this part, let me share with you a study done in the West.

61. This is regarding women as an object.

62. Let say a chair, which is an object, if we just show a part of it, say, only the leg of the chair, we can still recognize it as a chair. This is because it is an object.

63. Even when we show a picture of a chair upside down, we can recognise that it is a chair.

64. However, it is quite different when it comes to human being, except that men and women are different in the way they are perceived.

65. In the research, when the picture of a man in underwear are shown upside down, it is difficult to recognise him as a man.

66. On the contrary, women in almost naked condition (seriously guys, I was not the participant of this research hehe) when shown in an upside down image, is still recognized easily as women.

67. Why?

68. Because certain body parts of women are easy to recognize in what ever position they are displayed!

69. And because of that, women are seen not as a complete human, but are focused at only on certain part of her sexy body and do you know what this means? It means that a woman is seen merely as an object!

70. Let me sum this up quickly for you.

Dear women,

71. You do have a dignity, honor and pride. Take good care of them.

72. You can choose to be sexy and display any part of your body to other people, but you know what? People may be interested in you (especially men), but not because they perceive you as a human (with rights, emotions, feelings etc), but only as an object (for sex etc) na'uzubillah!

73. So think again. Are you a human? Or just an object?


74. When I speak of issue that reminds women of what they should do, I always want to emphasize that the more serious attention should be made by people called men.

75. Why? Because men are created to be responsible towards women, and men have to protect and take care of women.

76. This means that all of us men, we have a mother. Also, we have sisters and aunties and many others who we love- and they are all women!

77. Therefore, the maintenance of women is the job of not only women, but also men.

78. The second conclusion is, I write this not to influence us to hate others (from different religions e.g the Jews and Christians), but the ultimate aim is to dilute the obsession, or even addiction (if any) in plethora of things that do not have any origin from Islamic teaching and traditions.

79. Lastly, let me say this.

80. We are entitled to ask the right question in life. When it comes to Oppa Gangnam Style, again, I would propose that rather than asking, is there any problem with Gangnam Style, the better question I think we should ask is that, is there any problem if we live without Gangnam Style? My personal answer is NO.

81. At the end of the day, with regard to the question of originality, we have to make a choice:

82. To either be an original or a print-robbed (read: cetak rompak). 

83. Thanks for your time and feedback is highly appreciated. Allahuaklam. Wassalamualaikum wbt.

The End..
Read more "Gangnam Style: A Question of Originality"

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

When to Teach Our Children (About) Marriage

Assalamualaikum wbt.

1. I am not (yet) married.

2. Maybe in the year 2015, I will be. And I am going to reach 25 (hopefully with more knowledge and money) by then anyway.

3. So.............. when do we teach our children about marriage? The following is my opinion. You may agree, and you may not (or you may add if you wish).

4. I would argue that the first step is being that children first. Meaning, we are the children we are talking about now. Being a good child to our parents, will appropriately be the earliest pre-requisite of having our own children who are also good to us. This is also known as reciprocity.

5. Next, it begins with finding the right spouse. I have made some related commentaries about this here. A born child has everything to do with who their parents are. This is why our beloved Prophet outlines family (being the descendant of pious ones) as one of the important criteria when it comes to marriage. Others, as we are already well-informed about, include wealth, religion and whether he or she is good looking or not.

6. After 'dating' the right spouse, then only we have the next step, which is to teach them about marriage, even before they have the desire to get married.

7. Yes. It is usual, yet uncalled for, to be parents, when our children have to bring a stranger back home and introduce them to us their future prince or princess during which we have to reject the choice they have made. And most of the time, it may be too late.

8. Therefore, it is good to teach them (since young) the 'tool' they may need to look for a life companion, rather than to be a supreme judge whose job is only to say YES or NO towards the choice they already made afterwards. It really doesn't work well that way.

9. This is all about good parenting. We should provide them a tool to choose, rather than an ultimate decision against their choice.

10. In addition, I really love a wonderful advice given by Ustaz Nouman Ali Khan. If we as parents are too busy with our jobs and professions, and consequently spend less time with our children when they are young and need so much of our intention, it is just a matter of time before the world turns upside down.

11. When they become a teenager or an adolescent, and we become very keen to know about their whereabouts and updates, in need of their attention etc., they will speak less to us instead, and most of the time ignore us too while spending most of the time with their friends, just like the way we treated them when they were young.

12. In conclusion, I am not here to lecture on marriage or even parenting, but I just want to reinforce the stance that I hold in life, that everything begins with us and within us.

13. In other words, let's look more inwardly rather than outwardly. See others as a mirror to us. If we are bad enough, then that's what we are going to see around us. Just like a mirror. We will only see a smile if we smile while looking at the mirror.

Wallahuaklam. Wassalamualaikum wbt. ;-)

P/S: In exam mood. Please keep me in your prayers. Thanks my love! =D
Read more "When to Teach Our Children (About) Marriage"

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Antara Logik dan Magik

Assalamualaikum wbt.

".... maka tanyalah kepada orang yang berilmu jika kamu tidak mengetahui."
(Surah Al-Anbiya', akhir ayat 7)

1. Menjadi kelaziman dalam hidup kita seharian, kita mahu buat apa yang kita rasa ada sebab dan logiknya.

2. Maka apa jua yang tak tercapai dek logik akal, kita abaikan atau tinggalkannya. Ataupun, kita tak mempercayainya.

3. Contohnya, kita tak akan sanggup terjun ke dalam api kerana logiknya, kita akan mati hangus terbakar.

4. Pun begitu, setahu saya yang cetek ilmu ini, Islam memberi perspektif yang lebih baik dan rasional dalam berhadapan dengan isu logik akal manusia.

5. Pertamanya, ada beza yang besar antara (a) apa yang tak logik dengan (b) apa yang tak mampu difikirkan oleh logik akal kita.

6. Contohnya, adakah orang awam mampu menerangkan bagaimana pembakaran minyak petrol dalam enjin boleh menyebabkan kereta boleh bergerak?

7. Untuk orang awam yang tak mendalami ilmu itu, dia tak mampu memahaminya, namun dia harus bersetuju bahawa ia perkara yang logik. Adalah LOGIK bahawa dalam dunia ini, banyak perkara yang kita tak tahu. Mengaku bahawa kita tahu semua perkara itulah baru TIDAK LOGIK.

8. Justeru, tak bolehlah kita kata sesuatu yang kita tak ada ilmu padanya itu adalah tidak logik, kerana logik manusia amat terbatas berbanding dengan pengetahuan Yang Maha Mencipta lagi Maha Mengetahui.

9. Teliti potongan ayat Al-Quran berikut:

".....Tetapi boleh jadi kamu tak suka sesuatu, padahal ia baik untukmu, dan boleh jadi kamu suka sesuatu, padahal ia tak baik untukmu. Allah mengetahui, sedang kamu tidak mengetahui."
(Surah Al-Baqarah, ayat 216)

10. Sejurus selepas selesainya ceramah Dr Zakir Naik di UiTM Shah Alam baru-baru ini, saya dengan 2 orang sahabat lain sempat berbincang dengan seorang penganut agama Buddha, Richard, yang bertanyakan soalan kepada Dr Zakir Naik tentang isu ahli kitab.

11. Dalam perbincangan itu, Richard mahukan penafsiran yang berbeza tentang ayat Al-Quran kerana katanya, zaman sudah berubah, dan kita perlu memahami ayat Al-Quran dalam konteks yang boleh diterima logik akal manusia.

12. Maka baginya, tidak logik untuk penganut agama Buddha sepertinya tidak dapat berkahwin dengan seorang wanita Melayu Muslim di Malaysia, hanya kerana dia bukan seorang Muslim.

13. Maka di sinilah timbul isu logik. Richard meletakkan logik sebagai neraca utama dalam memahami ayat-ayat Allah SWT. Realitinya, Richard bukan keseorangan. Bahkan ada penganut agama Islam sendiri yang mengambil daripada agama hanya apa yang difikirkannya logik. Na'uzubillah!

14. Adakah hanya yang kita rasa logik sahaja yang benar dan sahih? TIDAK!

15. Sudah saya sebut di atas tentang keterbatasan akal manusia. Dan saya juga menyebut bahawa Sang Pencipta lebih tahu apa yang baik atau buruk untuk kita, melebihi logik akal kita yang tak mampu memahami semua perkara.

16. Nak tambah satu lagi. Sebagai umat Islam, kita beriman pada Allah, kekuatan-Nya dan kemampuan-Nya. Apa yang tak logik pada akal kita, Allah mampu lakukannya dengan izin dan kehendak-Nya.

17. Cuba teliti kisah Nabi Ibrahim. Baginda AS dicampak ke dalam api pun tak terbakar. Kerana yang menjadikan api itu panas ialah Allah SWT, maka Dialah juga yang mampu menjadikannya sejuk jika Dia mahu.

18. Ringkasnya, tiada batas dan had pada Allah SWT, tetapi manusia cukup terbatas dalam segala benda. Nota penting: Tak sama yang dicipta dengan yang mencipta.

19. Sebab itulah, Islamnya kita pertama-tamanya adalah dengan iman kita pada Allah SWT dan Rasul-Nya, diikuti ketaatan pada perintah-Nya dan Rasulullah SAW.

20. Apa jua yang sukar, atau mudah, berat atau ringan pada kita, semuanya adalah untuk kebaikan kita sendiri. Sedangkan kita diciptakan lemah. Lemah dalam membuat keputusan. Maka kita perlukan petunjuk, kerana petunjuk Allah SWT dan Rasul-Nya adalah sesuatu yang memudahkan kita, bukan sebaliknya.

"Allah hendak memberikan keringanan kepadamu, kerana manusia diciptakan (bersifat) lemah."
(Surah An-Nisa', ayat 28)

21. Tujuan saya menulis artikel ini adalah supaya kita mengingatkan diri kita bahawa logik akal bukanlah neraca UTAMA dan PERTAMA dalam kita membuat keputusan dalam kehidupan.

22. Sebaliknya, Al-Quran dan Sunnah yang datang dahulu dan mengatasi segala-galanya.

23. Tapi itu sahaja tak cukup. Malah untuk memahami Al-Quran dan Sunnah pun kita lemah dan serba kekurangan. Sebab itulah kita perlukan para Nabi AS dan juga pewaris mereka, para ulama' yang telah Allah SWT muliakan dan anugerahkan ilmu kepada mereka. Rujuklah mereka. Hormati mereka. Kasihi mereka. Doakan mereka.

24. Sebagai penutup, mari saya bawa saudara dan saudari meneliti situasi berikut.

25. Kita maklum bahawa makan daging khinzir diharamkan dalam Islam. Bayangkan jika 50 tahun dahulu kita wujud di muka bumi ini dan berpegang teguh kepada pengharaman ini.

26. Dan jika orang bukan Islam mahupun orang Islam sendiri tanya kenapa diharamkan daging khinzir, lantas kita mengambil SENJATA LOGIK kita untuk memberi jawapan.

27. Kita kata, ia haram kerana khinzir binatang yang kotor, duduk di tempat yang kotor, dan makan makanan dari sumber yang tak bersih. Kita tak makan daging khinzir kerana takutkan penyakit.

28. Sekarang, kembali kepada tahun 2012. Era moden. Khinzir kini diternak ditempat yang cukup bersih (bahkan boleh jadi lebih bersih daripada tempat tinggal manusia). Daging khinzir juga kini cukup bersih dan menggunakan teknologi bioteknologi yang tercanggih, tidak ada seekor kuman pun dalam daging khinzir.

29. Soalnya, adakah sekarang DAGING KHINZIR MENJADI HALAL?

30. Jawapannya YA, jika kita fikir secara logik. Dan jawapannya TIDAK jika kita faham bahawa ARAHAN ALLAH SWT melebihi segala-galanya, mengatasi kemampuan logik akal kita.

Gambar hiasan
31. Tidaklah salah menggunakan fakulti akal dan intelek yang Allah kurniakan. Namun, ketahuilah bahawa ia ada batas dan hadnya dan janganlah sampai ia menjadi punca kita melanggar perintah Allah SWT.

32. Bukanlah kita mengajak manusia menjadi pengikut agama yang buta dan tak perlu berfikir. Tetapi, kita mengajak untuk menukarkan sedikit soalan yang nak diajukan. 

33. Contohnya, daripada kita tanya, kenapa daging khinzir diharamkan, kenapa tak kita lebihkan masa bertanyakan soalan seperti siapa yang mencipta aku, siapa yang lebih tahu apa yang baik untukku dan siapa yang harus aku taati.

34. Seperti jika kita sakit, kita tak perlu termakan dengan kebodohan sendiri mencari sebab kenapa ubat A lebih baik berbanding ubat B (jika kita orang awam), sebaliknya bukankah lebih baik kita kaji siapa doktor yang terbaik untuk mendapatkan nasihat, siapa yang paling boleh dipercayai dan diyakini?

35. Tidaklah ia bermakna kita buta. Sebaliknya kitalah yang celik kerana bertanyakan soalan yang lebih wajar dan rasional. Allahuaklam. Moga Allah SWT kekalkan kita dalam hidayah dan rahmat-Nya ameen...

Read more "Antara Logik dan Magik"

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Bajet 2013

Assalamualaikum wbt.

1. Bajet 2013 telah disampaikan oleh YAB Perdana Menteri dan Pakatan Rakyat diwakili Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim juga telah mengeluarkan Belanjawan Pakatan Rakyat sebagai satu rujukan alternatif.

2. Sebagai anak watan negara yang rasional dan matang, ayuh kita membuat perbandingan dan penilaian dengan adil dan saksama. Moga dengan itu kita menjadi lebih bijak dalam membuat keputusan.

3. Sila muat turun dokumen berkaitan di bawah.

Wallahuaklam. Terima kasih ;-)

Perhatian: Jika ada masalah untuk muat turun, sila emel saya di jako_imp[at] Insya Allah saya cuba emelkan secara peribadi kepada saudara/ri =D

Muat turun

Muat turun

Read more "Bajet 2013"


The Colours of Life

The Colours of Life
Picture taken on Syawal 1, 2009

THE BELOVED FAMILY-Hey, do the maths!

Dad: Mohd Hanaffi bin Hassin
Mom: Noorma bte Mamat


Mohd Ridzwan
Nurul Shuhada
Mohd Amirul Asyraf (blog owner)
Fatihah Sakinah
Nurul Ain Afifah
Ilyana Nazlin
Nur Amira Mawaddah
Mohd Aizat Aiman
Nur Anis
Mohd Amri Afiq