It may be a dream afraid of waking up, or it may be a dream coming to realization in the next morning.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Prejudice is Helpless!

Ugly feelings are out there. No matter how deep we hide them, no matter how much we deny their very existence in our sole hearts, and no matter how much we resent their stepping in our own mental zone, but they are there. When we go around, we always see people denying the ugly feelings that they have; like hating cute babies (because babies are supposed to be loved), despising minorities (because equality is supposed to be believed), feeling like our mother's yapping has been too much and annoying (because we should be an obedient son or daughters), or disfavors own country (because there is what they call 'patriotism'), and many more.

Lately, I am attacked with these feelings where if I express them out loud, people will be gasped with terror, with a face like I just ate a child. Especially when one of my close friends just admitted something that made me rethink about our friendship status. The whole night, when we were talking about it, I was acting fine, because, well, as a friend, I was supposed to understand him. But, more and more the time passed by, I couldn't help but to feel very much prejudiced towards him.

It is one ugly feeling that I have, whose existence most people would strongly deny, because it's an ugly feeling - It's disgust. It's disgust towards something I'm not supposed to...

Or am I?

Sunday, May 16, 2010

One Marshmallow Now, or Two Marshmallows Later?

Last 3 days, I met with a very nice elderly woman who has a life, as said in a Malay idiom, "Kais pagi, makan pagi, kais petang, makan petang" which means that whatever you gain in the morning will be what you eat in the morning and whatever you gain in the afternoon will be your food in the afternoon. She has been planting grass under the sun, being a maid at many houses, etc. This elderly woman has been working hard to make sure that her children are fed, clothed, and schooled. And something about what she said twitched my conscience. She, very calmly, said, "I once said to my children, go for your dream, study and be very educated, so you wouldn't be having jobs like what I had."

I always had the idea that when your parents are financially strapped, it is always an honorable and huge sacrifice when the first sibling or the first son dropped out of school to work and gained some money, but not after she said the above-mentioned. In this world of knowledge and literacy, how far can you really go and gain, or how long would it be if you can go that far? It'd help your parents in the short-term but will it be any more of help in the future?

No matter how troubling our parents' financial condition is, but your parents wouldn't be selfish by not letting you to continue your education, because I believe every good mother and father has a universal motto that "no matter how hard it is, we'll find the resources to keep it going."

If you really want to help your parents, work hard in your education and be somebody who can finally afford your parents' lives, make them feel the most comfort in their lives. This is what we call as impulse control (Plante, 2010), "one marshmallow now, or two marshmallows later?" A research has been done that children who chose to have two marshmallows later are more likely to succeed in their future, as in they know how to control their impulses from immediate gratifications.

InsyaAllah, where there's a will, there's a way - so believe it, rizq is everywhere.

Plante, T. (2010). Two words to remember to maximize success and satisfaction in life: Control impulses. Retrieved on 16th May 2010 from http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/do-the-right-thing/201005/two-words-remember-maximize-success-and-satisfaction-in-life-control-

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

The Power of Now

Maybe some of you have heard a book titled, "The Power of Now" by Eckhart Tolle. I am neither promoting nor have I read this book, it is just the title has been really giving me a lesson lately. Alhamdulillah, in my recent life journey, I have been blessed with some fortunate events that really make me happy. I am very grateful to Allah for this and I pray that He will prolong these events and make them stay 'til the rest of my life.

But, have you ever experienced the phenomenon where your mind is deliberately trying to sabotage you, that  you being happy is not supposed to happen. No, I'm sure that mind is NOT that tricky, but I believe this comes from past experience that might have just made you felt so insecure and paranoid about your future. When you always experienced that good things in your past always ended up turning bad, you might not believe in life anymore.

But then, have you ever considered the possibility that things turning bad might be so because you were so focused on bad things that might happen in the future? Being very insecure is very unattractive and can drive people away, and drive you away from the good likelihood per se. The only solution is for you to appreciate the elephant that exists in your moment - the now. Aren't you feeling happy now? Aren't you feeling like on the nine clouds right now? So, enjoy it! It's an art not everyone can master. Forget about future - the only one you think about is how you can harvest the now to make sure the future can be lived in an expectably nice manner.

So, enjoy the now!

p/s: By the way, this is my very good friend, I just want to dedicate this post for him.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Bad Conclusions about Turkey!

Finally, after a 'grueling' session of relaxing myself after a long and tiring flight journey from Istanbul to Doha and Doha to Malaysia, I got myself back again, typing for this entry, about Turkey and my many opinions about it.

Turkey -- Generally, it's very hard for me to find one person who can speak in, at least, broken English with me. Communications with salesperson, or assistants in any place, or almost anywhere in at least Istanbul (well, of course in Grand Bazaar you can find many English-speaking Turks because a lot of foreign shoppers are there) can be very difficult. Oh! And they are bad drivers! Bad, bad drivers with no patience whatsoever, and just drive across roads even when pedestrians are there crossing the roads. Because of the speed, I even watched live a small accident of a car hitting behind another car.

But, if the language and driving attitude already made you think Turkey is not worth it to be visited, think again. A lot, and yes, a whole lot other sides of Turkey and Turkish people can glue you to your own stay at the country. I love every other parts of Turkey when I was there. For example, one thing that amazed me was the fact that there was almost no gap between people of high ranking and people below them. I met with a lot of Turks who have achieved a lot of things - the mayor, the doctors, the managers, etc. But none of them actually deliberately tried to show us the fact that they're higher than us.

In Malaysia, especially the ones who already have PhD, many of them have this "I'm more superior than you, so you must speak with me in certain manners," or "I'm a doctor, you're a degree holder, so control your gazing, and don't touch me," or "I'm a doctor and who says you can call me or SMS me?" In Turkey, even the mayor offered us hugging and the PhD students talked with us like we were their brothers. They could make jokes, and we could have a conversation with them. We were not bombarded with the emphasis, "call me doctor, don't call me something else," or "why do you call me with that title?? It's inappropriate!" It is supported with the fact that everyone is honored with ONE title, which is "Abi." We call the person to whom we respect with his name followed with Abi. Like they called me Taufik Abi.

So, now, I have a very bad conclusion about Turkey after this trip. I fell in love with the culture and environment (although the weather made my lips and nails area dry as a desert) and I have a new dream - coming along with my dream to study at the country - that now the conclusion is, I want to migrate there and be a citizen. It might just be a dream that's afraid of waking up, or it might be a dream that comes true in the next morning, but I'll keep dreaming and if Allah wills, it'll soon be realizations. InsyaAllah.

Sorry that "Hujan emas di negeri orang, hujan batu di negeri sendiri, lebih baik di negeri sendiri," saying doesn't apply to me.