Reminder

Allah SWT said in Surah Al-Ankabut: 64.

29:64

“And this worldly life is not but diversion and amusement. And indeed, the home of the Hereafter – that is the [eternal] life, if only they knew.”

In that verse Allah reminds us that the life in this world is just diversion and amusement and that the real life is the hereafter life. In many circumstances, we forget about our task and role in this earth. We forget that this life is a test from Allah. Prophet Muhammad also already said that the key causes why Muslim nowadays aren’t as good as first generation Muslim are because hubbud dunya wa karahiyatul maut; because we love this world’ life and afraid of death. We are too concern about others’ opinion on us. May Allah always reminds us this crucial thing. Allah Also said in Qur’an, “And those who strive for Us – We will surely guide them to Our ways. And indeed, Allah is with the doers of good” (29: 60). I just wanted to remind myself and all of us, let’s always be confident and not desperate in striving for a good thing. Insyaallah, as long as we do it to get Allah’s ridho, Allah will always help. SO just never give up. Do it at our best.

Life is a Test

Do you think that this life’s deceiving? For me, somehow, yes, I think so. This life is deceiving in term of dynamics that face day to day. In Al-Qur’an, it is very clear written that we are created by Allah to pray to him. In Al-Qur’an, we also know that Syaithan sweared to Allah that they will deceive human kind as hard as they can. Now I know where the deceiving part comes from. It’s from syaithan. Syaithan will always try to mislead us from the right path. They will mislead us, all of us. Even a really good person, or maybe we call them ‘alim, the temptation from syaithan to them will be even more powerful. Thus, what should we do?

Allah has said in the Qur’an, “And seek help through patience and prayer, and indeed, it is difficult except for the humbly submissive [to Allah ]” (QS 2:45). So here we can see that they key are patience and prayer. We have to be patient with every temptation from Syaithan. Patience doesn’t mean stay the way it is, keep quite, and passive. Patience is an active attitude. Always try and try to overcome something. While prayer, I internalize this word by two thing. First by praying to Allah that He always strengthen and guide us. Second, by literally do the prayer (sholat). I personally feel so peaceful when I pray (sholat) to Allah, mainly when I do sujud to Allah.

Hope Allah always keep iman in our heart and always strengthen us. This life is not an easy journey, but it’s also not an impossible one. Ya Rabb, arinal haqqa haqqan, war zuqnat tiba’ah wa arinal batila batilan, war zuqnat tinabah. Oh my Lord, please show us the  right path and help us to follow it; Please show us the wrong path, and help us to avoid it. Ya Rabb,,

Being in a Competition

Life is a a competition. I’ve heard many people complained about this statement. They argue that perceiving life as a competition would make life feel un-enjoyable and full with seriousness. Let me elaborate why I think life need to be a competition and will always be.

Firstly, whether we realizing it or not, competition will make us better. Being in a competition, someone will always try to improve his/her performance which in the end, whether (s)he win or not, will improve his overall capability. One of my professor explained why many overseas chinese and indians are more successful than their family in their home country. His answer is because these chinese and indians areexposed to a competitive world, either in US, europe, or anywhere else.

Secondly, Allah almighty, already mentioned in the qur’an that this life is a competition. Allah want to know who the best one among us. Allah said, “[He] who created death and life to test you [as to] which of you is best in deed – and He is the Exalted in Might, the Forgiving” (QS 67:2). Allah also suggested us to compete in doing good deeds. Allah said, “……, So race to [all that is] good. Wherever you may be, Allah will bring you forth [for judgement] all together. Indeed, Allah is over all things competent” (QS 2:148).

I do agree that our life need not to be a stressful life; however, I’m even more disagree if we think that this life is just to be enjoyed, whether not to pray to the God at all or doing the good thing in a slow pace. Having in mind that this is a competition, competition between us and ourselves and a competition between us and the time. In the end, we will never know when Allah will recall us to meet Him. Obviously, none of us want to be a regretful person when we meet Allah later. I do pray to Allah that me and everyone who read this writing will meet Allah with a satisfied heart, with a full of smile face.

Lastly, in term of applicability, when I was a junior high school student, I think a round 10 years ago, even though I was studying in a countryside area, I always think that I have to improve my knowledge, because I want to be on the same level of competency with the students in Java (because java is the most developed region in Indonesia). When I was studying at the university, even  though I was studying in the best university in Indonesia, I stress my mind that I have to be as smart and competent as the harvard student. believe me, all of this mind suggestion work.

Bearing in mind that we are competing in this life, will, insyaallah, make us want to do more and to improve more. So, ready to be in the race? Good luck!

The Story of Abdan Syakura and Hafiidzun ‘Aliim

This story is about one person who has been blessed by Allah with many talents and guidance. Allah has chosen and protected him from many things. This young man is also always tries to be really really good and beneficial to the society.

One time, Allah gives him rahmat to enter a leading university at a leading program in his country. In the beginning of his study, he stated that this study has to make me closer and closer to Allah. He said, “I want to be an ‘abdan syakura (referring to Prophet Muhammad phrase in one hadits), someone who is very close to Allah because he is so grateful to Him. He enjoyed everything; he enjoyed the life and rahmat that Allah has given to him. He joined many student organizations (mainly Islamic organizations), competitions, conferences; he was also selected to represent his country in one of world prestigious undergraduate exchange program. Finally he is awarded as one of the most outstanding student in his country.

The rahmat from Allah continues, he is accepted at one of leading university in the world with a full scholarship. He is one of the youngest in the class also among the few fresh graduate who got full scholarship. In the beginning of his study, he committed himself to be someone really capable in field of study. Referring to prophet Yusuf who are chosen to be treasurer of ancient Egypt, he wants to be the next hafidzun ‘aliim. Then everything is a bit changed. He was too concentrated with his academic life; improving his intellectual capacity, immersing his life to an academic hard core. But finally he felt something missing from his life. Something which made his life was alive before.

After a deep fall, one day, Allah reminds him again. Yes, Allah reminds him again.

Then the young man understand that being ‘abdan syakura is the very first and important thing above all. He then also understands that being hafidzun ‘aliim doesn’t mean that we are not abdan syakura anymore. When we strive to be ‘abdan syakura, insyaallah Allah will definitely also guide us to be hafidzun ‘aliim. When we only chose to be hafidzun ‘alim, we won’t necessarily become an ‘abdan syakuura.

Finally, the young man commits to always become somebody who really close to Allahstrive hard to get and be the best, as well as beneficial to people around him. Again, he is very happy that Allah still guides and reminds him very early before everything goes too far. He was so grateful to Allah.

Messages:

  • Yakinlah, jika kita berjuang, berda’wah dan melakukan kebaikan untuk akhirat kita, insyaallah dunia akan mengikut saja pada kita, namun jika kita hanya mengejar dunia, maka hanya dunia saja yang kita dapatkan. Oleh karena itu, dalam segala aktivitas yang kita lakukan, selalulah berusaha untuk menempatkan tujuan akhirat sebagai landasan niat dan tujuan utama.
  • Jika Allah berkehendak, maka tidak ada yang bisa menentangnya. Banyak hal yang terlihat tidak mungkin, namun ternyata bisa terjadi, karena memang, jika Allah menolong kita, tak ada satupun, tak ada satupun yang dapat menghalangi kita.
  • Allah akan memberikan kuasa atas langit dan bumi (mewarisi langit dan bumi dan menjadikan mereka khalifah atasnya) pada hamba hamba yang dipilihnya karena mereka adalah orang2 yang beriman dan beramal sholeh serta ikhlas pada Rabbnya.
  • Selalulah berlindung pada Allah dari godaan syetan yang terkutuk.

Our Country

We love this country so much, don’t we? But, have we ever think that how can someone who said that he loves something but he never want to improve or repair that country. Let’s talk a bit about our beloved country, Indonesia.

It’s a common understanding that there are many fraud cases involved in Indonesia’s government spending. Central government revenue have jumped from around USD56.1 billion in 2005 to around USD132.6 billion in 2011. Given a weak internal control system and corrupt ‘culture’, the fraud cases in government spending have jumped also. Here are thoughts about it.

  • The government (executive branch) should rely on or utilize the existence and work of BPKP (Badan Pengawas Keuangan dan pembangunan), the government internal control body, as well as all inspectorate general, the internal control body in every ministry. Besides that, the legislative branch (DPR) should rely more and follow the BPK’s audit findings up.
  • Previously, before the reformasi era in 1998, there’s only one ‘brave’ man who act ‘premanism’ in the country. But now, everybody want to be the ‘brave man’. Everyone compete each other to ‘suck’ country’s money. While at the same time, the internal control bodies are not functioning, the government audit body also hopeless, and the most important thing, the law is not there! The police, jury, prosecutors, etc.
Are we gonna hoping for someone to fix it? Or,, we create or join an organizations aiming to do a reform. If that’s so, let’s make sure that we’ll be someone capable and highly amazing and competitive. Let’s invest more in hard skills, soft skills, and everything needed to conduct the reform. Be a more intelligent and contributory person.

Stand on Our Own Feet

I just watched a shocking documentary about Rwanda Genocide. Now, I fully understand what people mean by ‘you are on your on’. I think it’s a big lesson. There is no such ‘international cooperation or international peace’. Countries just act if there is something beneficial for them. Just as american said when Rwanda Genocide happened, “US will only act if it is on its national interest”. Scr*w them. Of course we have no reason to blame US, however, as a world prominent country, permanent member of  national security council, can’t they influence UN to take action?

Countries around the world have to stand on their own feet, on their own ability. Threat will always come. As in the documentary, the General said “At that time, I felt like I wasn’t negotiating with human, I was negotiating with evil”. Yes, for any ‘un-understandable reasons’, human can behave like evil.

Please watch it.

World as a better place. Can we still reach that?

Alhamdulillah,,

Alhamdulillah,, I think that’s the most appropriate word for me right now. I asked Allah before to be in an academics environment, and alhamdulillah Allah gave me that. Tomorrow morning is hari raya, however, now, 10pm, I just got back from the school after more than 12 hours school. I enjoy it so much.

I’ll always try to make myself more educated, more professional, and have a really sharp and fast analytic skills.

There are several things that I learnt today.

First, from public policy and analysis class, I just more realize that somehow politic is important but it, on the other way, will blocking the important thing for society too. Why? They just full with greedy and selfish people. A good joke presented in the class from a video by Prof Fritzen is this:

Second lesson that I learnt is social media is way very important in shaping agenda setting for policy nowadays. I think it’s a good opportunity since we, society, will try too push the ‘unfavorable’ government to really work for us. I, somehow, admire Singapore government which really can work for their society.

Third, about development, from my development policy in southeast asia, I learnt that transformation from rural to urban area is not always favorable as there will be side effect of it. Besides, the concept of development as freedom from Amartya Sen also attract me.

To end, I, again, really want to express my gratitude to Allah for giving me this great opportunity. Alhamdulillah,,