Saturday, 25 February 2017

Introvert...Really?


By: Zale Navi
Four years ago, I didn’t know the existence of this word. Being a writer (not professionally) and someone who enjoys and loves reading, it is really a shame to admit that ”introvert” was not in my dictionary. But again, I have never been good with vocabularies.
Our dearest, beloved, respected, much appreciated and celebrated uncle Google defines introvert as a shy person. However, if you care to dig deeper to the psychological meaning of the word, you will discover that introvert has got nothing to do with shyness. So I will just blame uncle Google for misleading many of us. Why is it a big deal? Do I go around checking for words wrongly defined by Google? Absolutely no! I don’t even use Google, I prefer Oxford Dictionary 😉
The reason why I took interest on ‘introvert’ is, I believe it is not a coincidence that recently most of us identify ourselves as introverts. Before you throw your shoe at me, I know some of us are really introverts while the rest of us are just shy. Conventionally speaking, shyness is not a trait that is looked at positively; not unless you are a bride. Introvert on the other hand sounds cool to the ears and guys with this personalty are really productive people to hung out with; even though they are not largely celebrated in the society. Nevertheless, I’d rather say am an introvert than to admit my shyness.
The problem, however is not about being shy or being an introvert. The problem is actually how the world has forced some of us to keep to ourselves. We live in a society whereby, what is least important is considered to be the most important; yes I am talking about sources of entertainment. If you don’t know enough about them, then my friend you are automatically sentenced to life time silence. There is lack of kindness in our words and expressions. Our actions knows no boundaries nor show of compassion and consideration to the next person. We treat each other like the ground we step on. who would not want to keep to themselves in such a world?
Kindness, compassion, love, care, humility… they are important traits that give most of us the courage needed to get out of our shells and share our world with others. In today’s world; we listen, not to understand but to catch that shrub, or word said out of place so that it can be a source of entertainment to us years later. Making fun of one another and ridiculing each other is the norm. We observe actions not to learn from them but to find a slip up fit for our critics and harsh comments. We are busy looking out for ways to out do one another, competition is the order of the day leading to hearts that house jealousy and hatred towards each other. Love that is meant to be shown in actions is reduced to sweet meaningless words updated as status on Facebook or cute pictures posted on instagram. Our main focus is to accumulate more and more of anything and everything to ourselves, with no care whom we have to step on to get there. Many are in pain and tears because of our actions but we just don’t give a damn! Humility is a vocabulary to us and it does not matter how many definitions Google and Oxford Dictionary offers, we just don’t seem to get it. I ask again, who would want to be associated with such a world?
We need to see the urgency in making the world a better place. It does not cost you anything to show kindness, love, compassion and humility to others. It all starts with a smile, a ”how are you?” to the disturbed classmate. A helping hand to the lady from the market. A ”thank you” to the one who cooked your meal. A ”sorry” to the one you bumped into in your hurry to catch the bus. Holding the door for the boy coming right after you. A genuine ”well done” to the one who did better than you… the list goes on and on and I am sure I can list a thousand more a like without asking you for a penny from your pocket. So what is stopping you from taking action now?
So back to introvertism; it is so real. And these people too, need our love and acceptance. We should not view them as people with some kind of abnormality, because they are normal just the way they are. It is their different personality, their tendency to keep to themselves that bring balance to the world. So please, have mercy on them and don’t force them into gatherings for long hours, they literally get drained. It is in their solitude that they derive their energy from. But isn’t that what we are all about, diversity? Different personalities? Let’s allow our differences to bring us closer and celebrate the various personalities that are out there. Share your world with the rest of the world.
As for me, I am an introvert, I think. I’m also shy and know very little about entertainment world. So, basically I am a part time normal person. And the people around me have accepted that. Most introverts, what they really need is their space. If you deny them that, it gets hard for them to function. But it is not a disease that needs cure. Being an introvert is just like being left handed and the society needs to accept you for who you are and make you feel comfortable among other types of personality. Our world is all about diversity, and we can co-exist. We just have to learn how to share the gifts of life.

Sunday, 12 February 2017

The Scary thing Everyone Missed

Photo Courtesy: NPR

We have all drowned in the ocean of realization that President Trump had won the election. Came as a shock to most but, drowning isn’t that relaxing turns out. More so, one of the first actions as president is issue a controversial ban on all airlines flying in from the seven Muslim majority countries from entering the US. And man did the people learn to breath underwater. We had demonstrations from every corner of the Western world (metaphorically) with Muslims being cheered on for being Muslims and even some like Hassan Minhaj, being welcomed after landing in airports with balloons and hugs, because they were, yeah, Muslims. Couldn’t have seen better days right? 

Ps. Watch Hassan Minhaj’s experience here.

The vanilla mood was then tipped off by an over ruling from the Judicial body of the country and as per now, the ban has been lifted. What a desert :-p. Its impact however, continues to cloud the skies of the world. And as Hassan Minhaj explains above, it is Mental; mental in a good way.

Not only did it make Muslims in the West celebrities, but also nudge the need to know why President Trump was acting all paranoia with the bans. Why is he so afraid of Muslims and their religion, what does this religion really say? I want to see this for myself if I am to protest for this.
Photo courtesy: Unknown

And so they poured in. In multitudes they came. Above is a picture showing just how many. And mind you, that is just a single mosque. In a single area. Of a United States of America. Notice the ‘s’ in the ‘States’. I mean, could you imagine the sheer number of people that might embrace Islam by the Will of Allah or even the number of those who just could remove all the phobia of this religion and ease the trials of other Muslims in these countries? What! In a land where Muslims were being judged from head to toe nails, this is great news! 

I still can’t believe to have witnessed a Nationwide support backing the most evilly branded religion in our time, and still get new brothers and sisters from one of the least most expected country, existing also in our time. It’s a dream come true. But the more I think about it, the scarier these happenings become. 

Allah swt promises that His religion will succeed, with or without its believers. The only part we can play is having the honor to take it to its ascertained destination. Now here we have all these new Muslims pouring in because the one person who tried to dishonor His religion, became its very cause. And history be my witness, we all know what the capabilities new Muslims have for this religion; the likes of Dr. Bilal Philips that has Muslims studying Islam in the millions, all under his effort; and many more like and even better than him. This means progress right? But where is me and you in this equation?

Surah Muhammad Ch 47, V 38

We are being replaced. With our unreasonable excuses, our pointless efforts and knowingly avoidance we are being replaced. Allah swt is withdrawing the honor He once put out for us to take and giving it others because, frankly, they’ve seen what the other side is like and they have abandoned it for the side we keep ignoring because they’ve seen the beauty in ours so yes, they are not the likes of us. They are better than us. But who is to blame, really?

I mean you are the one to have shown the world the ray of Hope in a world engulfed in the darkness of depression…the one to have given Trust in a world where even blood is considered enemy…the one to have in the least form of action, at least changed the perception of another, in a world where Islam is branded with terror and fear… You were meant to stand out because that’s what the truth does. You were chosen because you are a disciple of the best man to ever walk the face of this earth, and you CAN handle it. Otherwise you wouldn’t have been born Muslim, and so wouldn’t all new born children in this world.
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Now for some good news.

Just because you have read up until this point is another reason why Allah swt is just so beautiful. His Mercy. Even though a whole new ummah is being handed the honor, Allah swt is still offering you a chance to be among the ranks. For some, this might be the first chance, for some still a couple more left and for others, the last. He knows best.  But one thing’s for sure, Allah swt is Just. Can you comprehend the odds of you reading this article, out of all the other articles in the net, among all the things available on the internet, of all the things you could have been doing at this moment, wherever you may be in this Planet (the ‘P’ is meant to show just how big )? Allah, Most Just, Most Merciful.

So please, do yourself a favor and don’t throw away your religion. Don’t throw away who you are. You deserve that much for yourself. Because when you do, you will lose yourself to the changing faces of this world and Allah subhanahu wata’ala promises to make sure you stay lost, forever wandering this earth only to meet an abide we all know too well not to wish for.

Surah Al-Munaafiqun,  Ch 63, V 3


Take back the Honor. Be among those who succeed.  

Wednesday, 8 February 2017

Ever Heard of MICO?


Photo Courtesy: Shutter stock

I was asked to write something about this new estranged world but I couldn’t come up with anything. I had nothing because honestly, I couldn’t imagine living in a world where everything is half full. Where life is one sided and sometimes had no sides at all. I was blank because I couldn’t imagine growing up shy to talk about all the things my parents bought for me or competing with my friends as I boast about all the things they were going to. I couldn’t imagine not running after a plane in the skies as I declare its ownership to my Dad even though everyone of my friends did the exact same thing. I could not imagine not crying for my moma when running from my neighbor’s dog or not threatening that bully with the wrath of my papa. I could not imagine how it feels when my friends have to go because their parents will get worried or the burn when I see someone disrespecting theirs. I could not comprehend trying to picture my dad’s face when he smiled or trying to remember my mother’s voice when she scolded at me…oh my just her laugh…please don’t forget her laugh… I could not imagine being ready to trade everything I have in this world just for one moment with them…tell them all the things I never used to… tell them how much I loved them…how hard it has been without them… how painful it is as I watch my guardians slowly grow tired of me and start using me as their house keep…mummy you took our home when you left and I am not safe anymore daddy…I miss you…I miss you soo much and I will never forget you. I will never replace you… How hard that is, I couldn’t.

But these children at MICO, these Orphans, they could. They do. Every single day of their lives because for them, it’s not an imagination, it’s their reality.

The Malindi Islamic Centre for Orphans (MICO) is a non-profit organization first established in 1994 at the coast of Kenya, Kilifi County, in Malindi district. MICO is currently working with over 500 orphans from Malindi and Watamu area. It provides them with basic education; from Nursery to University/ college; feeding services in school and health services which actually has one beneficiary; Dr. Khadija Awadh; who went up to university level through this program and is now working as a health officer. 

MICO is only able to do what it does with the help of well-wishers and beneficiaries like Dr. Khadijah. And with the increasing number of orphans in this testing world of today, it’s going to need all the help it can get.

I cannot really speak out for these kids, but the aid MICO is providing for them, it makes this life worth living for and even worth changing for the better, like Dr. Khadijah and many others, and many more like them to come God willing. They have lost half of who they are already, it doesn’t seem like a bad idea to try and put the other half back together. I know nothing of what it’s like living with one or both parents gone. But I know I can help make it easier for the ones that do, and one of the hows is through MICO. So spare a little of your time and check it out by clicking this link: malindiorphans.org  and maybe you can learn to spare a little more than time, in shaa Allah, God willing.

I really hope you’ll consider them. 

Jazakallahu Kheiran.

May Allah (God) increase you in goodness.