Time to put my feet up. Relax. Read the news.
There's a world outside and I have to know what's going on.
Good news, bad news.
Sigh. I can't change the world. Heck, I can't change things in my own country.
I am reminded that Raja Zarith Sofia Idris writes a column, "Mind Over Matters", in The Sunday Star.
I like her and I like what she writes. And she writes, from where she is standing, about her life's experience, her point of view about issues that touch her.
You'd expect some la-di-da tone or that patronizing and condescending note in her writing.
If you really did, then Raja Zarith Sofia is a disappointment because you can't detect all that.
She is so down to earth and I do believe that she writes from the heart.
In her column about "Separate Realities" today Raja Zarith Sofia comes to the realisation, like the rest of us, that it is not possible to help the thousands of poor and underprivileged people across the globe. So, we do what we can, when we can to help change the life of people we know. In her case, she is set to help an old lady, Aminah Mohd Tahir, perform her pilgrimage.
Earlier, my younger son had just told me about an old lady, Aminah Mohd Tahir, whom he had met that afternoon; she was born without hands and feet. He showed me the book “Catatan Dari Syurga” (Notes from Heaven) that had been written about her life by Rohani Deraman.
Aminah was married, first to a man who deserted her after she bore him a child, and then to another whom her parents did not approve of because he was not a Malay. But for some years, they did have a happy marriage during which she bore him six children. He died of asthma and she, as a single mother and physically handicapped, had to feed and clothe her six children. She did so by working for other families, by looking after their children or washing clothes.
Her youngest son Jaleel recalled how, as children, they ate rice mixed with salted water. There was nothing else for them to eat.
Aminah’s dream is to be able to perform the haj. We were wondering how best to help her make her dream come true when news about the earthquake diverted our attention for a while. My son said Aminah was crying at a ceremony where she and about 100 poor and single mothers were given food items for Ramadan.
While there will be international and local coverage on TV about the earthquake in Sumatra and the victims, there will be none on Aminah. So, in the end, there remains just a few of us who will know about Aminah’s plight and desire to go for pilgrimage.
Perhaps, instead of trying to save the whole world, I can start with just this one person who lives not far from us. She is now part of my reality. The voice of guilt has become louder. It tells me I must try to make her dream come true. I hope I can.
During our 50th year of Merdeka, I know that there’ll be many Malaysians who will be generous and caring enough to help make Aminah’s wish become a much longed-for reality. Inshallah. I know many people would turn a blind eye or simply turn the other way to the plight of the poor and underprivileged. I suppose it is easier to do that.
During our 50th year of Merdeka, I know that there’ll be many Malaysians who will be generous and caring enough to help make Aminah’s wish become a much longed-for reality. Inshallah.
I know many people would turn a blind eye or simply turn the other way to the plight of the poor and underprivileged.
I suppose it is easier to do that.