Jasad & Pertemuan
Jasad bersemadi didalam bumi,
Namun jasa baktimu kekal di hati,
Pemergianmu bagaikan baru sehari,
Seorang ibu, seorang isteri,
Kita menanti pertemuan
Yang diberkati Ilahi...
Your body is resting in the earth,
But your charity and deeds live on in the heart,
Your passing seems only like yesterday,
A mother, a wife,
We await a meeting
Blessed by God.
A Grandma He Never Met. Over the Eid festivities, myself and Mikhail visited the graves of our kin. And the nearest cemetery is one near my house, where resides the final resting place (in this mortal plane) of my mother, Arbayah binti Haji Hashim. Mika, who always enjoys our visit to the garden of stones, told me that we must visit his grandmother's grave more often. He is right, of course. The funny thing is my mum passed away in May 2002, almost 2 years before he was born, so he has never in fact actually met his grandmother. But Mika is fortunate that my father is still alive, and so is his grandmother on his mother's side. So in a way he kinda has the full grandparent team, something which I myself missed.
The Home that Arbayah and Khalid Built. But just as how my mum and dad related to me stories of my grandparents whom I never met, so I too often regal my son with tales and escapades of my mother. I keep telling him how generous she was, with so many friends, both in the family and outside (For you should not take for granted that your kin is necessarily your friend... for like all friendships, it takes effort, love and much caring). I would tell Mika of his grandmother's quiet travels into the hinterlands, donating and doing charitable works, whether as part of some women's organization or really just on her own and only with a couple of close friends. I also shared with Mika how my mother made my house a home, with rich abundance and a refuge for anyone who would care to come by for an understanding heart and a ready ear to listen. And boy, did we have a lot of visitors, almost every day of the year...
Mika and His Tok. One night last year, I was sitting with Mikhail outside my father's room, when my father passed by and entered his room. Mika suddenly whispered to me, "Papa, I think Tok Wan (he calls my dad that) must be sad. He must miss Tok (my mum) a lot." I replied, "But why are you talking so softly?" And he answered, "Because I am sure Tok Wan would feel more sad if he heard us talking about Tok and him."
On the second day of Eid, while we were arranging red roses (dammit, those roses are really full of thorns) for his grandmother's grave, Mika said, "You know, Papa... I hope to meet Tok in heaven." I glanced up from my bleeding fingers as he continued, somewhat more circumspectly... "Well, I hope I get to heaven!"
Connection with the Hereafter. This connection with someone who predeceased you before you were even born is not merely the habit of a deranged man (a.k.a. yours truly), it is, I guess, a seminal pillar of faith in Islam (including Judaism and Christianity), since the passing of the Prophet Muhammad (s.a.w.s.) as the Seal and Last of the Prophets. And just as a poor old Papa is trying to keep the sweet memory of his mother alive for his own son, so does the living Saints, both hidden and open, continue to maintain the golden connection between us doddering sinners and believers, with the prophetic presence of Muhammad Habibullah (s.a.w.s.), his blessed family, the Companions and the Saints.
122. Not Dead
Oh, my Mighty King!
I have not left my flock unattended,
I have not left any fences unmended,
I have left stars that any, if lost, may follow home.
But a cold wind is blowing,
Carrying my memories far away,
Blackness is creeping in,
And though they know how to pray,
They have left my way.
Save for my heirs and heralds,
The fulcrum of this Age,
Still toiling in their mortal cage,
Long-bearded, the white, the black and the grey,
In their hearts, evil holds no sway,
In their hearts, Your Name resonates,
In their hearts, I still live,
Connection from the Transient Artifice to the Eternal Real. And based on authoritative sources, I am told that this connection is more powerful than the fastest internet connection known to Man, and more real than you, me and the entire world combined. For in the eyes of Allah (s.w.t.), nothing comes first before His Muhammad (s.a.w.s.), and nothing comes through without the Prophet's (s.a.w.s.) intercessions. This quintillion terrabyte connection is working around the clock, over the clock, up and under the clock, 24/7 365 days a year. All for the Prophet's love and mercy for not just the Muslims, but for all humanity, all creatures, all sentient and non-sentient inhabitants of the worlds. Phew!
The Divine Nexus. In this context, the story of my mother and my immediate family appears to be such a small and insignificant thing. But I know this is not true. Not for me, not for you and your family. For the love exemplified and promised to us comes from the spark of divine nexus between God Almighty and the Prophet (s.a.w.s.). And truth be told, beyond this is more than even my most love-sick conjecture of Divine Love can spell out for you...
|A glittering remnants of a super nova in outer space as caught by the|
Hubble space telescope. God's Love is even more beautiful,
more audacious, and more real.
So have a happy one, sunshine. And I leave you with this afterthought - I am defeated in trying to describe the Love Divine and the Divinely Loved. I cannot win in this battle. But I am happy to be continually defeated by every dot, comma, word and phrase that I write by God's own Prose... For love, True Love... which is the Prose of God cannot be explained, it can only be experienced.
wa min Allah at-taufiq
Hate has no place in Islam
Love will show the Way