Uswah Clothing

24 June 2008

Apologies

In the name of Allah The Most Gracious and The Most Merciful.


Apologies to all for my inability to update my blog lately. Somehow, the enthusiasm and spirit that I possessed back in London in writing and updating my blog are not with me, here in Malaysia. There were a few times when I had flows of ideas in my mind, but I just couldn't splurt them out. The ambiance, the feeling is just not right. I guess I accidentally left my 'semangat' in London.. *lol*


Well, I am off to Australia tonight, and I'll be back on the 4th July, God willing. And that translates into another yet of no updates for at least 11 days... *sigh* Pray for my safe journey and hopefully, this adventure will be blessed with His barakah and rahmah, Insha-Allah...


I don't want to leave all of you with nothing though. Here are some words of wisdom that worth pondering...


Ibn 'Ata-illah said;


"How many a wrong action leads to a sense of shame and impoverishment before God is better than obedience that leads to a sense of pride and arrogance."


And Hamza Yusuf once famously said;


"They drink to forget. We pray to remember..."


Fikir-fikirkanlah...


Allahu a'lam...


-gabbana-

15 June 2008

Buat teman

Buat insan-insan yang bergelar teman, terima kasih...

Teman,
Tatkala kaki ini longlai melangkah lemah,
Memijak bumi si bekas penjajah,
Memegang janji menggenggam amanah,
Kau berada di sisi berganding bahu,
Membakar obor dahaga ilmu,
Penat keringat ku sentiasa dibantu.

Teman,
Ketika aku lapar bersusah payah,
Di bumi asing tiadanya ramah,
Sunyi tiada berkawan siasah,
Kau datang menghulurkan tangan,
Ikhlas senyuman penyejuk perasaan,
Aku terharu tertangis keharuan.

Teman,
Pabila aku sesat kehilangan arah,
Utara selatan tiada diendah,
Hampir jerumus ke lembah musnah,
Kau cepat memberikan nasihat,
Jalan keliru menjadi tepat,
Aku kembali menyusur rahmat.

Teman,
Semalam sudah kita berpisah,
Esok mungkin bertemu madah,
Tidak ku tahu kuasa Allah,
Kau tetap ku simpan di jiwa,
Kerna dirimu amat berharga,
Terima kasih atas segalanya...

Wisdom of the Week

In the name of Allah the Most Gracious and the Most Merciful.

Ahmad az-Zarruq, a 15th century Morroccan scholar says;

"If you desire to live such that your religion is safe and your portion is full and your honour is sound, guard your tongue and never mention another's fault remembering that yourself have faults and others have tongue."

He says,

"Never belittle any talk that involves absent people even if there is no harm in it, due to the possibility of harm entering into it."

And this correlates with what Saidina 'Ali ibn Abi Talib has said,

"Do not belittle anyone, for he may be a saint of God."

Allahu a'lam...

11 June 2008

Selamat tinggal London...

I'll be leaving for Malaysia, tomorrow at 12.00pm. Insha-allah, God permits, I'll arrive at KLIA on the next day around 7.30am.

As I am writing this, mix feelings of joy and sad, melancholy and glad overwhelm myself. Yes, you who are reading this outside there might think I am just being ridiculous and over the top. After all, I still have 2 more years to go before I'll be graduating! (Insha-allah...) But no, this is not a complete absurdity. In fact, I think this post is justified. I'll explain why.

While it is true that it has not been even a year since I left Malaysia for my further education, this is my first time being so far away from my beloved ones for so long. Although homesickness is the thing of the past, I did miss my family and those who I care and treasure so much back in Malaysia. I am a city boy, who has a close-knitted family. I am not embarrassed to admit that I am especially manja with my mum. ;) Hence, the idea of coming back, meeting my family, my cat, my friends, eating all time favourite nasi lemak and koay teow really sparks the unbearable excitement in myself, long before I even bought my flight ticket...! Hehehe..

Yet, leaving London has this intrinsic emotional value. I don't know how to explain, but those who have experienced this, you know, this inexplicable sad feeling when you put all your belongings into baggages and boxes, should understand what I am trying to say. I have always been longing to travel to Europe especially the United Kingdom. I do not come from a wealthy family, therefore it is not until I was offered the scholarship to further my studies in the UK that I finally got the opportunity to explore the European regions. Alhamdulillah, all praises be upon Him... London has indeed taught me a lot of things. My first year in London has captured all sort of excitements and tribulations. For the first time in my life, I am living on my own, independent and far away from my family. (C'mon... Asrama can't be taken into account, can it?? You don't cook, buy groceries and do laundry yourself, do you?). I learned how to spend wisely, how to manage time more carefully (hallo?? during winter, Isya' was like at 5 pm and now it's like 11.30..? Does that ring a bell?? ;p), how to cook sedap-fully, hehehe, and of course, how to befriend people whom you could have never imagined before that you would come across. It is enough for me to say here I have learned a lot. I am now a different man indeed.

Yes, I still have a long journey ahead. In fact, I can't say, I can't tell what lies ahead for me. Future in uncertain. But one thing I am very sure of, I am grateful for what I have gone through for the past 9 months. Thank you Allah, thank you...

And to all my friends, I can't thank all of you more, for making my life more meaningful and interesting for the past months.

To Hamid, thank you for being the closest friend, the fact that I barely knew you back in college. Thank you for being my imam/makmum and if not for that, I must have wasted a lot of of 27 darjah for every salaah time. I have learned a lot from you and you have taught me a lot of things. And you have helped me when I needed assistance. We had differences and I sincerely apologise for all my wrongdoings and sayings that might have hurt you.

To Rudzy, thank you. =) We lepak a lot during the first term as you didn't get your kitchen yet! Hahaha.. That was fun. You are quite a character indeed. I got to know you a lot better in the past 9 months, compared to two years in college. You were there, always listening when I needed someone to talk to. I really really sayang you... *blushing* Thank you for everything.

To Aqil, you are my first and only Singaporean friend I have had (Ok, note that I said friend, not an affiliate or kenalan..). You are cool, knowledgeable, full with experiences and all these have taught me to be a better person. Traveling with you was indeed an adventurous and memorable experience. Thank you for the money you lent, the time you spent with me and Hamid and and the, er, not-so-effective study group! Hahaha.. Cheers man!

To all my girlfriends; Mek, Ija, Didi, Aiza, Dalila, Zata, Zakiyyah and Iman, I don't exactly know how to thank you girls. Thanx Mek for the magnificent delicacies and all the politics-economics talks we had. Those were fun. Thanx Ija for always being patient whenever I nagged you asking this and that. Thanx for being ever willing to join my ISOC's dinner team! To Didi, Aiza, Dalila, Zata and Iman, I can't say I know you girls that much. But one thing for sure, my life has been a hell lot more interesting knowing and living with you lot here in London. And to Zakiyyah, like Aqil, you are the first Bruneian I got to know. Not the only one though... ;) You are indeed a fun and bubbly friend. I will always love your shoes... Hihihi~

To Roslan, Waqi and Hazwan, masha-allah, jazakumullah khair. Thank you so much for everything. Knowing people like you guys has indeed 'saved' me, Insha-Allah. I apologise if there were any moment or time for the past months I have known you guys, I ever frustrated or hurt anyone of you in anyway. Wallahi, it was never my intention to let any of you down or feel upset and devastated. Whatever it is, I am looking forward to work with all of you. May Allah make our efforts easier and we ask for His guidance and protection, Insha-Allah. Thank you for everything.

To all my other London friends; Amirul, Syat, Zharif, Apak, Faris, Dann, Adam Tan, Jau, Ammar, Azman and whoever else whom somehow I can't remember to write your name down, hehe, thank you. Only Allah is the rightful ONE to repay all the kindness and compassion you guys have poured on me.

To all my friends, I love all of you. It has been a awesomely wonderful experience, to be given the chance by HIM, to know all of you! Subhanallah... You guys rock! ;) Please, pardon me for all my wrongdoings and sayings because I know, I can be a pain in the ass sometimes and that hurts. But wallahi, I didn't consciously and intentionally do all those dreadful things. Halalkan makan minum, salah silap and all the bad things I have done to you. May my first year in London is indeed, full with barakah, Insha-Allah.

If I were to regret a few things that I could have done for the past months, those would be my failure to contribute more to the society/community and my inability to befriend more international people. But like I said, I am full with gratitudes and thus, there is nothing to regret about. I still have two years ahead Insha-Allah (probably more, who knows I might be working here after graduation? ;O) and that translates to a hell lot more of interesting and exciting experiences!

Adios~

-gabbana-

7 June 2008

Wisdom of the Week

In the name of Allah the Most Gracious and the Most Merciful.

Imam Al-Mawlud said:

"Dignity with God comes to those who are humble before Him; who place prime value on how they are received by their Maker and not by how they will be judged by the ephemeral forms (purification of heart).

And Sulayman ibn ar-Rabiah said:

"Wayfare to Allah, limping and broken-limbed, do not wait for a clean bill of health, because waiting for a clean bill of health is idleness."

Allahu a'lam...

-gabbana-

6 June 2008

Sekitar kenaikan harga minyak

Illustrasi kenaikan harga minyak. Ihsan 'Facebook Group: 1 Million Malaysian Who Are Sick of RM2.70/liter Petrol Price'.



















Apakah nasib rakyat Malaysia akan menjadi sebegini rupa? Kita nantikan... ^^

-gabbana-

Kubur masing-masing...

Saya paling menyampah, tak boleh tahan bila mana kita nak tegur somebody, and response die..."Ikut suke ati aku la! Kubur masing-masing..." Memang menyirap btol!! Atau pun, "Jangan jaga tepi kain orang lain boleh tak..??" Haiyo... Memangla kubur masing-masing abang oii... Tapi dalam kubur tu nanti, kita akan dipertanggungjawabkan atas apa yang kita lakukan, apa yang kita buat kat dunia ni!! Maksudnya, memang kat dunia ni kita kena jaga tepi kain orang lain jugak, coz memang dah tanggungjawab kita! Ok, ape sebenarnya konsep dakwah tu? Kita amik yang paling mudah dan tepat, yakni merujuk kepada hadith Rasulullah S.A.W.;

"Barang siapa di antara kamu yang melihat kemungkaran, maka hendaklah dia merubahnya dengan tangannya, dan jika tidak mampu maka dengan lidahnya (lisan), dan apabila tidak mampu, dengan hatinya. Dan demikian itu (dengan hati) adalah selemah-lemah iman."
-Hadith riwayat Muslim.

Jelas! Setiap individu Muslim WAJIB berusaha sejauh mana yang termampu untuk menegur@memperbetul kesalahan orang lain. Ha, tapi ni tak bermakna kita boleh mencari kesalahan orang lain, apatah lagi nak mengintai@men'spy' apa yang orang lain buat! Tapi nak bagitau kat sini yang konsep 'Jangan jaga tepi kain orang lain' adalah suatu konsep yang salah dan tersasar daripada kehendak Islam! Bahaya kan? Coz selama ni kita sering didoktrinisasikan, sering dipengaruhi oleh kelurga dan rakan-rakan yang bila mati nanti, kubur kita masing-masing.... Tak share dengan orang lain! Lupakah mereka dengan ayat al-Quran,

"Wahai orang-orang beriman, Peliharalah dirimu dan keluargamu daripada api neraka yang bahan bakarnya dalah manusia dan batu..."
-At-Tahrim, 66:6

Nau'zubillah... Ha, kan dah kena kat batang hidung?? Kita kena ingat bang, kak, yang kalau kita tak tegur mereka, tak tegah perbuatan maksiat kawan-kawan kita, kat akhirat nanti, kat padang Mahsyar nanti, mereka ni yang akan 'tegur' kita balik! Diorang ni yang akan tuntut balik kat kita, "Kenapa time aku still hidup kat dunia dulu, kau tak tegur aku?? Kau tak jaga tepi kain aku??" Baaammmm!!! Amik sebijik! Tapi time tu, dah terlambat cik adik oii... Time tu, sesal lah camne pun, menangis merengek terkeluar taik mata emas sekali pun, tak mungkin kita akan dikembalikan ke muka bumi yang fana ini.

"Dan alangkah ngerinya, sekiranya kamu melihat orang-orang yang berdosa itu menundukkan kepalanya di hadapan Tuhannya dan berkata, 'Ya Tuhan kami, kami telah melihat dan mendengar, maka kembalikanlah kami (ke dunia), nescaya kami akan mengerjakan kebajikan, Sesungguhnya kami adalah orang-orang yang yakin."
-As-Sajdah, 32:12

Bottom lone, try our best! Islam tu kan mudah? Innaddinna yusrun! In fact, macam hadith yang disebut kat atas tadi, kalau kita tak mampu nak tegah dengan perbuatan sekali pun, cukuplah sekadar kita membenci/tak suka dalam hati dengan perbuatan maksiat dan sia-sia yang kita nampak dengan mata kepala kita. Walaupun tu adalah selemah-lemah iman (masha-allah, terasa sangat lemah diri ni..), at least kita tak bersekongkol dengan maksiat tu. Coz kalau dalam hati pun kita takde perasaan benci dan tak suka, tu maksudnya kita redha dengan perbuatan tersebut. Maka kita telah dikira sebagai rakan kongsi dalam pelaburan maksiat kawan kita tadi, walaupun share kita secuit je...

So, saya nak meningatkan dan mengajak diri saya sendiri dan korang yang membaca/terbaca entry ni, marilah kita bersama-sama menjaga tepi kain sendiri dan orang lain, asalkan tak terselak kain tu! ^^ Coz kat kubur nanti, kita tidak berseorangan, kita punya 'teman'!

Allahu a'lam...

-gabbana-

5 June 2008

Why the hike in fuel prices affects all of us

There are of course, various measures of growth and wealth of a country. But the two common and widely acknowledged measurements are GDP (Growth Domestic Product; where only seen materials are taken into account) and CPI (Consumer Price Index). The former is more common in determining the national income of a nation whilst the latter is used to measure inflation. Ceteris paribus.

Another concept that is vital to this observation is GDP deflator, that is how much does it take to 'deflate' the nominal GDP to become real. The two commonly used indexes to measure GDP deflator and CPI are Paasche and Lespeyres index. Paasche price index (derived from Hermann Paasche, a German statistician and economist) is based on today's prices, and as such form the basis of GDP deflator. The Laspeyres index (also a German economist, Etienne Laspeyres) on the other hand, measure the changes in today's prices based on fixed prices.

I don't intend to ache your head will all these theoretical stuff and thus, so let me simplify these notions in my own words. You use Paasche index to measure GDP deflator, so that you know how much you need to make your nominal expenses become real. On the other hand, the you use Laspeyres indes to determine whether the rise in price today will you make you better or worse off than yesterday. As such, if there is an increase of price in, say, rice, I want to know whether the increase in price is a general trend or rather a relative one.

So lets experiment with a realistic example; the drastic hike in Malaysian fuel prices. Since yesterday, the petrol's price was RM1.92. The government, under the leadership of Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi has decided to rise the price by 72 cents, effective today. Diesel's has increased from RM1.52 to a whopping RM2.52, a shocking 65% increase. The government claims that with this step, the country will save up to RM13.7bn and will use this surplus of funds to subsidise imported rice and cooking oil, among others.



Ok, now lets take a typical Malaysian car, Proton Wira. A Wira usually needs 30litres of fuel for a full tank. So using the old price, a Wira's owner is expected to spend around RM200-300 per month for his Wira (to make things less complicated, let us just assume other things being constant. Ceteris paribus.) But with the new price, he will definitely try his best to fully utilise his journey so that he can reduce his fuel consumption. As such, we would expect his consumption of oil will fall. But is he better off, or worse off than before? This is when Paasche/Laspeyres index becomes handy.

We use Paasche price index first. The notation is given by;



where tn is the current year and t0 is the previous year (or base year, for that matter). Ok, I'll create a situation. Bad used to replenish his Wira's tank 5 times per month with the old petrol price. Now, as the price for petrol has increased, he only fills his tank thrice per month. Using this information, we can now calculate his Paasche price index.

P(Paasche) = [RM2.70 x (3 x 30litres)] / [RM1.92 x (3 x 30liters)]
= 1.40625

Using the Laspeyres price index;



and using the same info as above, we can also calculate the index.

P(Laspeyres) =[RM2.70 x (5 x 30litres)] / [RM1.92 x (5 x 30liters)]
= 1.40625

which is the same as above.

So, what do these infos tell us...? Roughly, it suggests that Bad is definitely going to be worst off, as a result of the rise in fuel prices, regardless which index you are using. And haha, get ready! As Bad is a typical average Malaysian, he thus represents all of us. Hence, it also tells us that most of Malaysians will be badly affected by this change in price. Bear in mind, 1.40625 is not a small number, when index comes into concern. It illustrates a rise of 0.40625 from the original value (in other words, an approximate 40% rise in price). Also bear in mind that an increase in fuel prices is not merely trivial. Oil, also known as the 'black gold,' is arguably the most important commodity in today's modern economic world. Hence, a rise in fuel prices will surely trigger the rise in prices of other goods. So now when Bedah goes to her usual mamak stall, she'll find out her roti canai costs 20 cents more than before, because the prices for flour and everything else have increased. Or when Steven Chia wants to buy a new house, the cost now has doubled, probably tripled than a month ago, thanks to the increase in prices of cement, woods and concretes. Letchumy Karupillai also finds out that now she has to spend more on her usual groceries shopping at Giant. All these will inevitably lead to none other than INFLATION.

Oh and don't forget that the price elasticity of demand for fuels is highly inelastic. This means that although there is a sharp rise in the fuel prices, the fall in quantity demanded for fuels is very insignificant; simply because fuels are considered as daily necessity. In fact, the revenue gained from fuels now is even more profitable, compared to before. So... Who gains from this hike? PETRONAS. And who owns it? Ahah! That's a completely different story... *grin*

My mom has already complained about it. She said now my family has to adjust the budget accordingly; cut any unnecessary expenses wherever is possible. Sigh.. And what was Abdullah's response to this? He urged Malaysians to be more modest in spending, to cushion any undesirable effects of the drastic rise in oil's price. Right... I wonder if that also means he will reduce his unnecessary trips to oversea... *ooopppsss*

But again, of course, I am only a student. I am nobody. Whereas Abdullah is the Malaysian Prime Minister. He has all the bright minds and think tanks working all days and nights to ensure the welfare of his beloved fellow citizen. Having said that, the 78 cents increase of the petrol prices and one ringgit for diesel's, must be the best thing to do. He must have considered all the options, thought about all the pros and cons... He is right, I am wrong.

Hahahahahahahaha... *lol*

-gabbana-

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"Sesungguhnya Allah membeli dari orang-orang mukmin, baik diri mahupun harta mereka dengan memberikan syurga kepada mereka. Mereka berperang di jalan Allah; sehingga mereka membunuh atau terbunuh...

Maka bergembiralah dengan jual beli yang telah kamu lakukan itu, dan demikian itulah kemenangan yang Agung."

-At Taubah, 9:111

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