Sunday, November 28, 2010


IN THE TIME AND SPACE GIVEN I saw two interesting news in the local papers and pertaining to activites here. Unable to transfer directly to the page I suppose the next best thing is to give the web site and maybe you would be able to read them after all. "QUICK BUCK" or "FAST BUCK" seems to be the choice of the topics. Naturally with three million people gathered at one place for a period of time there are opportunities. The hard working, the initiative, the planners all can benefit. At Makkah Muslims from all walks of life can be trustful, forgiving and CHERITABLE. There is no let to their sacrifice and desire to assist and offer services esp alms. But the Zam Zam mafia if so needs fast action.  Please refer:

oop sorry that the news re zam zam waters was way back. However there is a latest report. There is a need to be cautious.

Monday, November 22, 2010


1. NOW THAT THE RITES AND OBLIGATIONS have been performed, all can sit back to prepare for the next programs or actions.Nevertheless  none would miss the daily prayer at Al Haram while he or she is here. Several Malaysian groups have already departed for home, everyone wishing that his has been 'Haj Mabrur'. For those that are still here and given the time and space they will have the opportunity to perform 'umrah' as many time as possible. Others may be getting ready to travel to Madinah to visit  and pray at 'Masjid Nabi' while appreciating the grandeur of a most beautiful mosque and the finer character of the people of the city. Hopefully too the winter weather most have been expecting could be realised come December when the jemaah are there. 

2. Truly all the obligations that the jemaah have been through are exacting to time. Islam truly perfected timing for all its followers. No qualm about the five prayer times. Then again even the Haj calender and all its rites have to be followed, programming all services to perfection less three million people or more at one center in a city may be left in a chaotic mood. Imagine the departures of hundreds of flights either from Jeddah or Madinah with all the check-in, inspection and baggage clearance.Syukur Allah  is great the climax of the Haj moved on smoothly.

3. Following are several photographs of Mekkah and the sites of Arafah,Mudzalifah and Mina; places that jemaah have been attached with. Except for Mekkah, these places have returned to their former selves, empty except for the brigade of cleaners and their machineries to clean the area. Once done they await their visitors for the next Haj season.

4. Now at Al Haram too the Kaabah has taken a new shrouds of black with golden embroidery stiches of Koranic verses only to be replaced the next coming 'wukuf'. I am made to understand that the black cloth cover measures 14 metres by 74 metres ,hand made and has taken eight months for the craftsmen to get it done.

5. No signal or directive to the functions and exacting of time for the people of Mekkah especially and the Muslim world at large can be more definitive than when we observe the new clock tower looming above all the high buildings near Al Haram excepting the old houses on the surrounding hills. Its green face with a large circular frame can be seen miles away. No chime or sounding of the time though.Yet it's a guidance.

6. Several surah in the Koran will attest to such wantings for us to adhere to time.

'And it is He Who made the Night and Day to follow each other: for such as desire to be mindful or to show their gratitude"    Al Furqan: 62

A new section at AlHaram built above the saie sector. Its intricate design yet again compliments the grand mosque.

A street scene away from Al Haram, yet the clock tower is visible from afar.The 'Masjid Kuching' as most Malaysian know is seen in the foreground.

There are several historical sites around Mekkah and JABAL NUR  being one.

Walking in the grounds of 'Ma'la' at Mekkah I took this photo with new buildings in the background of hotels and apartments with the grave stones in the foreground. A branch of a tree in the Ma'la area lent shade.

  At night the imposing clockface with its green background can be seen miles away 
'Wukuf' at Arafah in the tents will forever bring back unforgotten memories and no less internal and personal feelings as you pray for forgiveness. While many seek the comfort of the tents on the plain others risked themselves on the high ledges of the surrounding hills"
Only a moon and a single star of the constelation shine on us that night over the Mudzalifah plain as we 'mabit' while waiting for transportation to Mina. At other times they would guiding lights for travellers.

A small corner at Mudzalifah that took the jemaah from South East Asia epecially. All singly robed in white.

Modern construction at the 'jambrat' with flyovers, lifts and bridges have eased the flow of pilgrims to the area. It is a far cry from what that existed fifteen  years ago. With rail service on the way by the next Haj season it will be a greater help.  

Six photographs taken at Mina, with scene of the tent housing, walking to the Jambrat and along the tunnels, the jambrat as designed to take in the throngs of people and men in action stoning the 'devils'. Not forgetting a group doing morning exercise.

This scene from the very top floor, part of the new construction of Al Haram shows the various floors with the Kaabah below with a large crowd of jemaah circumnavigate it or performing the 'tawaf'

Saturday, November 20, 2010


1. IN THE CONTEXT OF HAJ , there are literatures abound and even videos and cassettes to put you right on the path of  your pilgrimage. Courses are conducted by Tabung Haji, mosques, institutions including travel agencies that promote packages for pilgrims besides the national organised setup by Tabung Haji itself. All that being specific to Malaysia.

2. Believe me nothing compares to being here yourself and of course performing the Haj with three million Muslim pilgrims all over the world. When everyone covers himself with the two pieces of white shroud called ihram, there is nothing to show where he is from excepting the color of his skin. Their sole focus is towards 'Haj mabrur'.

3. For sure the Haj begins at Mekkah.Millions of pilgrims moved into the city before the 8th of Zulhijjah. With its bursting limits, an additional three million visitors from all over the world moving into Mekkah for an extended period of a fortnight to seven weeks no less surely would put the local city councils at a high point for the necessary services besides the security to the visitors and its populace alike. 

4. The peak of Haj meant  seeing all pilgrims dressed in white, moving into the plain of Arafah before dawn breaks on 9th Zulhijjah. Here everyone has to perform the 'wukuf', meaning to be at Arafah even for a brief moment between noon and sunset.

5.All are prepared for the pilgrims. Accomodation in tents, toilet facilities, food and drink plus special 'surau' etc are there. He has to be here only in person.   He has only to spend his precious moments here praying, reciting holy verses or read the Koran.Here he will experience moments only the 'jemaah' could  personally described. The prestine moment after the zohor prayer allows him to read a prayer repenting and asking for forgiveness from Allah for all faults, sins and wrong doings  he has committed in his life. It's soul searching. Confessions, sobs and tears flow unspared.

6. With the break of 'fajar' everyone started moving to Muzdalifah.Transporting such a huge number of pilgrims to the plain of Muzdalifah within two to three hours is a daunting task and not surprisingly many 'jemaah' would be making the short journey by foot.

7. The temporary halt at Muzdalifah allows the 'jemaah' to pick seven pieces of stone while of course enhancing on him or her to continue praying, reciting and reading the Koran. Nearing midnight, everyone is on the move again. Now to Mina. the camp city for religious rites for the next three days.

8. Mina enclosed in a valley sets again an experience to be felt and treasured by the pilgrims. The stoning of the 'Jamratul Ula, Wusta and Aqabah' then takes precedence. The presence of 'jemaah' old and young, men and women arriving from the whole wide world set on one purpose can only be marvelled. They walked in groups at alloted time for several kilometers and through a large man - made tunnel to gain excess to the 'jumratul' and back not once but four times amongst the uneasy crowd. The sick and elderly got wheeled - chaired.The hot weather plus a sudden storm followed by swift flood waters at the camp on Friday 12 Zulhijjah in the afternoon only make the three day stay at Mina  memorable and significant. No doubt there was enlightenment with comraderie amongst hundred others who were strangers before but now closed friends and links resulting from the jemaah prayers in the tents  which were our homes.

9. The history of Islam's devout and followers' journey to the Holy Kaabah and AlHaram for the Haj has now recorded 1421 times bearing that it began since the 10th year of Hijrah. Prophet Muhammad saw led his friends and followers numbering 90,000 to 120,000 from Madinah. Since then the Haj being one of the pillars of Islam has guided millions from all over the world to make that one important journey once in their lifetime. The onset of sacrife, danger and time have now moved forward to convenience,security and comfort. Malaysians took to shipping embarking from Penang in liners and disembarking at Jeddah more than a half century ago. The sea journey alone lasted weeks. Thanks to the Saudi Arabia's authorities, the Kingdom's royal house and the facilities afforded by the respective governments of the world and especially the Muslim nations our journey and our search for Haji Mabrur has never been more meaningful and accessible. Only it takes  a longer time for newly fresh registered pilgrims to fulfill their Haj due to a quota system. All being fair, Muslims all over the world will forever look forward to their first Haj journey.      

(satu imprasi dan pemerhatian diri berkaitan Haj tahun ini, mengingati kami dilanda bajir pada hari dijadualkan berlepas dari Lapangan Terbang Alor Setar)

Thursday, November 11, 2010


KITA MENITISKAN AIR MATA MELIHAT KEIKHLASAN DAN KEJUJURAN jemaah menghulurkan bantuan kepada seorang yang amat memerlukan bantuan.Bayangkan kalau anda kehilangan wang ringgit semasa jauh dari halaman rumah sendiri.

Dia berdiri dikalangan jemaah yang sedang menunggu menunaikan fardzu subuh dan menjelaskan dalam bahasa yang tidak kami erti tapi maksudnya difahami bahawa dia kehilangan wang saku yang tersimpan dalam tali pinggang putihnya. Dengan spontan seorang demi seorang bangun menghulur dan menyerahkan sumbangan mereka kepada peminta itu. Ayoh sungguh mengkagumkan melihat peristiwa ini berlaku didepan mata kita sendiri. Tidak putus seorang demi seorang memberi sumbangan mereka, Sipeminta menitis air mata dengan apa yang dihulurkan kepadanya.Tidak dalam sangkaannya. Tidak pula ada apa-apa seruan kepada penderma. Mereka terus membantu dari keinsafan hati masing-masing.

Apa yang kita boleh kata? Syukur kepada setiap individu yang menghulurkan bantuan.Sipeminta mungkin tidak jangka begitu perihatinnya manusia Islam khusus di Masjid Al Haram. Pungutan Saudi Riyal itu tentu segali melegakannya. InsyaAllah.

( It happened right in front of your eyes. A man stood up amongst the congregation and briefly explained that he had lost his money showing the white leather belt that many pilgrims carry with them. Only a brief explaination between sobs. Next moment the large congregation gathered for the 'subuh prayer' digged into their pockets and offered their contributions to the man. No doubt many who heard the man's crying want never really understood what he meant but his action spoke louder than words. It is hard to believe how many irrespective of country and color  voluntarily came to his aid.We cannot help noticng how overwhelmed he was with such offer of help from complete strangers. The next moment the congregation offered their subuh prayer. The man disappeared in the crowd. Others had done their duties.  Surely he must be grateful.) ALLAH is GREAT. ( Noted as it happened at Al Haram Mosque Mekkah)

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

MUSIM HAJI 1431H ( 2010)

"Hamba Mu datang menyahut panggilan Mu, ya Allah!
Hamba Mu datang ,menyambut panggilan Mu; 
Hamba Mu datang menyambut panggilan Mu !"

Begitulah bergemanya 'talbiah' sepanjang perjalanan. Pada satu masa tanggal 4 November 2010 ucapan talbiah memenuhi ruangan pesawat Boeing 747 Mas apabila 450 orang penumpang senada menyuarakannya berulang kali.

Banyak perubahan telah berlaku dan banyak lagi sedang diusahakan dalam usaha menyambut 3 juta jemaah Haji khususnya ke Mekkah dan Madinah. Lapangan Terbang Haji di Jeddah diubahsuai dengan pelbagai kemudahan dan memudahkan penumpang mendarat dengan cepat.Tidak lagi seperti masa lampau.

Di Kota Mekkah  jam besar yang baru dibina menjadi mercu tanda sentiasa mengingati penduduk kota tentang kepentingan masa.Kedudukan nya yang tinggi membolehkannya dilihat dari jauh. 

Para penumpang dalam kapalterbang sewa khas MAS.
Ubahsuai membolehkan seramai 450 oang dibawa sekali gus berbanding 350 orang pada masa biasa.

             Banjir di kampong tak mengapa. Tumpuan kepada satu sahaja

Pembangunan berjalan siang dan malam


IT JUST HAPPENED THAT THIS IS A TEST PHOTO, in an attempt to load a picture in the blog. Not that he is a young soldier but this grandson of mine seemed to be carrying my old  gun. Many senior persons in the country had permits to purchase shotguns or rifles in earlier time for reasons to protect their properties or plots of lands against destructive animals. Try going to a police station in May /June each year you will find this brigade of senior persons with their prized possessions lining to renew the gun permits. With strict control, it has become difficult or indeed impossible to transfer permits to our younger generation. Very soon most of the old guns would be absorbed back by the police force who in the first place issued those permits.

It is interesting to compile a story or account of the seniors who held these prized and treasured items and their adventures of times a half century or more ago when hunting was a possible pastime.The makes of the guns themselves would disclosed where we imported them from and perhaps tell the history of the world's gun makers.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010


IT'S RAINING CATS AND DOGS. On the east coast the warnings have gone out. The rivers have reached their danger levels. A friend at Kuala Trengganu barely mentioned of the coconut trees in his yards shaking in the wind and the next moment heavy incessant rainfall floods the plains and the lowlands in Perlis and Kedah. A picture of a rice storage barn called 'jelapang' ironically has become a victim and it appeared on the front page of a local newspaper.Had it stored its old content, it would be a loss indeed. Sadly 'jelapang' are no more. Those remaining would be hard to come by. Ironically does it harbor a forbidding calamity?

Still  heavy rain would bring disaster in many ways, Yet this is a perennial affair. Just as people in Kelantan once took to the flood waters, rejoicing at  its occurrence, authorities seems to awake when they are drenched, sounding the danger alarm, moving the boats along the highway, initiating school buildings as relief centers etc. Can't we wake up to the realities and do the necessary during dry season and stop gallivanting during this time of the year?

No we prefer last minute surprises for its aura and news worthy pull.

Flood disaster alarm hit Perlis and Kubang Pasu and Kota Star on 3 November. Only a day of continuing rain and in the late afternoon its evacuation for all. Very immediate. The rest of the story is told over the TV and local newspapers. We were hit. Time was just sufficient to move the heavy furniture. Many others did not have that luxury.

Will we continue to see a repeat as we have seen in 2005/6 and now 2010? Will we continue to dole cash, equipment and energy again after each flood? Will we continue to clean and clear the rubbish after each flood? Become poorer for all that have to be replaced?

Why? Why? No solution to it all during the long dry season? Why the waterways,rivers and canals never get clean, deepen and cleared? Why developments etc never get the full attention during the sparing dry season less they hinder flow and allow congestion? Why are road and highways constructed much higher than the surrounding kampong land and the drainage by their sides only meant for surface water from the road? Now don't deny that the double tracking of Keretapi Tanah Melayu under construction from Ipoh to Padang Besar does not contribute to farther seriousness?

Or are we too tired having spent cleaning all the debris etc after each flood season that we need to take a long rest? Or are we too rich to throw much ringgit to the tune of millions come the flood waters? Certainly it is luxurious for committees set up after the disaster to spend money for assistance!

Noted while at Mekkah 9 Nov 2010