The Great Perhaps

Assalamualaikum w.b.t.

When people asked me why I was going to MRSM AG, I’d jokingly quote Francois Rabelais, as a crippling attempt to be optimistic, when in reality it was codswallop.

I go to seek a Great Perhaps.

What the heck is a ‘Great Perhaps’, eh? Opening the door to a thousand different glowing opportunities and chances? To swim deep down into the vast sea of new, unforgettable, life-changing experiences? Paving the path to developing into an improved, efficient, beautiful individual? Probably.

Did you find your Great Perhaps, Arifah? Did you?

For three whole years I was a hermit who lived in her own world with a burning rage for virtually everyone and virtually everything, refusing to peek out of my shell. And I’d stare up at the sky and blame the universe for not paying attention to me. More dates were crossed on calendars, and the days went by fueled by hatred, sadness, timidness and insignificance.

A man said to the universe: “Sir, I exist!” 
“However,” replied the universe, 
“The fact has not created in me 
“A sense of obligation.”

Correct me if I am wrong, but those days have come to a halt. I have learned tolerance, respect, and learning how to deal and live with others. How to share my problems with other people and the art of conjuring good times out of thin air. The importance of interaction with others, when I used to take pride in my almost non-existent social life. How vital friendship and teamwork is in the worst of times. As Dale Carnegie said, “You can make more friends in two months by becoming interested in other people than you can in two years by trying to get other people interested in you”. And that the simplest things you do or say can open an impressive array of possibilities. You cannot sit and do nothing, and expect the world to notice you. It is you who must offer what you have to give to the world. In the words of Emma Stone, “What sets you apart can feel like a burden. And it’s not. A lot of the time, it’s what makes you great”. So, my friends, stop caring so much what other people think. In the end, it is your life.

I also discovered courage. Mastered how to stand on my own two feet, to speak up for myself. Discipline and punctuality. Assume responsibility when needed, and to show commitment and kindness at all times. To be less picky, and to make the most of what I have. To take necessary action, and to always find room for improvement. As mentioned previously, I am slowly but surely getting over the fear of giving nasihat to others, and accepting the nasihat of others wholeheartedly. Also, apparently things like pizza, shopping, going to the movies, and the internet aren’t really that important once you’ve learned to live without. Except the internet maybe, hahah! Just… well, less important. As my parents always remind me, the British royals were all sent to boarding school to sow the seeds of being independent. Even if Kate and William recently announced that little George will not be sent to board.

As quoted from Mulan, “the flower that blooms in adversity is the rarest and most beautiful of all”. Life for the first three months or so was fiery hell on earth. Refer to my post on the 14th of October. Like I said, I was pushed lightyears and lightyears away from my comfort zone. In the end, aku jugak yang dapat hikmahnya. What if I did not go through all of that? I would still be that poor, clueless little girl. And because of that I have become less judgemental towards people. “Don’t be in such a hurry to condemn a person because he doesn’t do what you do, or think as you think or as fast. There was a time when you didn’t know what you know today”. Wise sayings from Malcolm X.

Kak Husna Nisa, a Form 5 student, who is a pretty active BADAR member, gave us Muslim girls a final reminder last Saturday night after reciting Surah Yaasin. She said that to change for the better, we must remember three things. Firstly, intend to change for Allah. Pintu taubat sentiasa dibuka selagi jantung kita masih berdegup. And Allah will shine the light of guidance to those who sincerely, genuinely want to mend their ways. Other than that, stop hating other people and learn to forgive because we all make mistakes. And we use up a great deal of energy when we hate. I would know. You could take all that emotion and put it into doing something productive, something beautiful, something that will contribute to mankind – if not mankind then to at least one person, even if is only yourself. Lastly, stop backbiting. You may have heard this a hundred times, but the reality is that backbiting is equivalent to consuming the flesh of your own brother. Avoid it at all costs. It feels so truly satisfying to hina, to caci, to maki, to kutuk, to ngumpat. But you know what? It feels better to not expose the wrongdoings of others – imagine how you would feel if someone did that to you. In conclusion, worldly pleasures do indeed bring intense pleasure. But you never really feel that… ketenteraman hati that someone who dedicates his existence for Allah does. Because the world will never take his heart.

She did include snippets of the person she used to be. Hidup sengsara untuk setahun masa first masuk maktab ni, bila tengok balik kawan lama dia sekarang – diorang amalkan cara hidup yang sangat bebas, etc. Of course I was reminded of myself. I teared up before she did. The next day, I gathered the courage to go to her room, with my trembling hands, and shared my troubles with her because I don’t think I know anyone else who would understand. The burden of a dark past, and the uncertainty of the future. I was so worried that the moment I step outside this school, I would go back to my bad old habits and abandon zikr and the Qur’an. Not even attempt to pray early or with khushu’. Go to sleep without reciting doa tidur. Indulge in worldly abandon. Give in to my nafsu. It was at MRSM AG that I gained an abundance of religious knowledge, obtained the consistency and sincerity of performing various ibadah, to truly see Islam as a way of life and not just five letters on my I.C. But how was I to maintain that when I venture into the outside world?

But Kak Husna was kind, she gave me a boatload of advice. She said that I have to remind myself every day, surround myself around good people, pray frequently, put all my trust and faith in Him, and if I feel like doing something sinful, I should call up a friend who will try to pull me back to siraatul mustaqeem (the right path). She also said that she has never met anyone named Husna who wasn’t nice. After all, doesn’t ‘Husna’ mean highest goodness/beauty? Asma’ul Husna. Nama-nama Allah yang terbaik, terindah, terpuji. She said, Allah akan menguji kita dengan peristiwa yang gelap supaya dapat berubah untuk menjadi insan yang berakhlak baik. The night before SPM, the Form 5’s salam-ed with the juniors. Kak Husna’s last words to me as she hugged me? “Kerana Allah”. Ahahah, and I used to be pissed that a Kak Husna existed in this school. ‘Cause Kak Husna is my name! All the kids in my family call me that. But I’ve learned to like Kak Arifah, I guess, ’cause only Razan calls me Kak Husna at school.

Ustaz Zaidi ada bagi pesanan. We should salute the chicken on our plates at the DS (dewan selera) because it fulfilled it’s purpose of living – to become a source of energy for humans. But are us humans worthy to be saluted? Because the purpose of our lives is to serve Allah. Ikut segala perintah-Nya, tinggalkan setiap larangan-Nya. The funny thing is that Arissa’s voice boomed through the PA system, announcing that the DS would be serving chicken chop that night. Anyway, Ustaz said that we enter heaven or hell atas pilihan kita sendiri. I was instantly reminded of something Peter Parker said. It’s the choices that make us what we are… and we can always choose to do what’s right. My motto for the school holidays, and ultimately, life.

Abu Huraira reported: The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, said, “The world is a prison for the believer and a paradise for the unbeliever.”

And for the record, yes, I believe I have found my Great Perhaps.

P.S. I just really like quotes, okay?

#nowplaying Mufasa’s Ghost – The Lion King

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