Sunday, October 12, 2008

my hari raya experience


In Malaysia, the Malays living in the towns usually go back to their hometown or kampung to celebrate Aidil Fitri. This migration from big urban cities to rural areas is known as the "Balik Kampung" phenomenon in Malaysia.

kueh and pastries in glass containers arranged for aidil fitri visitors
And it is so because it is always multiple the joys when celebrating the Hari Raya Puasa together with parents and siblings. And with two days of official holidays, it’s normally a week of celebrations.

So in the big cities like Kuala Lumpur, the last few days of Ramadan will be a time for traffic jams on the roads leading back to the home-towns and villages. It is also a time when accidents increase dramatically even with increased police monitoring and presence to deter speedsters and traffic offenders.


Well, it’s back to Kelantan for me, to celebrate at the home of my family, as done every year since years ago.

So the day before Hari Raya Puasa, i would pack my bags and take the three and a half hour’s journey from Dungun on the "Balik Kampung" venture.

Here’s a brief description of how i normally spend celebrating Aidil Fitri in Kelantan.


The day starts in the early dawn when my mother wakes up at about 5.00 am to do her "Subuh" or dawn prayers. She also wakes up the other family members for the prayers.

After her prayers, it’s time she does her scheduled chores for the morning, helped by the children. Switching on the radio, the Takbir and joyful Hari Raya songs will be heard, providing the soothing back-ground music, so chores are happily carried out.

Among others, the traditional kueh and pastries are put into glass containers and arranged on the table, with the kettle of tea and coffee or jugs of soft drinks also prepared for visitors.

Mom's will also start warming up the rendang and the kuah kacang (satay sauce), the gravy for the nasi himpit, the family’s main dish for this year’s Hari Raya. The nasi himpit, chicken rendang and gravy have already been cooked and prepared the night before, helped by her daughters and sons-in-law.

Every year my mum alternates between nasi himpit and ketupat as our main dish for the Hari Raya, although once a while she would cook the nasi kerabu.

Well, to continue ...

After the morning bath and the dawn prayers, we will all put on our new clothes of traditional Malay costumes, the baju Melayu and baju kurung and baju kebaya.

Afterwards a little breakfast is taken, since it is advisable to eat as a symbol or gesture that Ramadan or the fasting month is over.


And after the little breakfast, it’s time to go to the mosque for the Aidil Fitri prayers which starts at 8.30 am. Usually I will take my family in the car to the main mosque in the middle of my village.


After Aidil Fitri prayers, back home, there will usually be another round of light eating, to reserve our tummies for the visits later.

By this time too, all other members of the family, about eleven of them, will be at my home congregating for the activities to follow - also a perfect time to take group family photos.

Then it’s time for salam and asking for forgiveness, starting with the patriarch and elders and then with other family members. The younger ones will hold and kiss the hands ("salam") of the elders.

Aidil Fitri is always a perfect time, when all are present, to ask for forgiveness from family members, relatives and friends, for wrongdoings, if any, whether done knowingly or unknowingly.

For the children this "salam" is the time that they anxiously look forward to because with the handshaking, they will be given small tokens of cash known as "duit raya" . Nowadays the duit raya is put into an envelope as an "ang pow" following the Chinese New Year tradition.

Working adults are extra generous on this day, so children can expect to collect substantial amounts when they go round visiting relatives, neighbors and friends.


Perhaps the most joyful session of Aidil Fitri is when we go round in convoys of cars, mpvs or vans visiting the homes of relatives. That’s because Aidil Fitri is perhaps the only time free from our usual daily busy schedules when we could meet with uncles and aunts, cousins, relatives and long-time friends.

At their homes, we will be served with the main dish of the family and of course at all those homes, traditional Malay kueh or pastries abound. Nowadays most of these traditional kueh or pastries are available and bought ready-made at the Ramadan Bazars and shops, although home-made ones always taste more delicious.

Normally the morning visits end at mid-day when there is no more room for any more food or drink in the tummy! Bloated with all kinds of food substances, it’s back to home to relax and rest and maybe take a short nap after the tiring (and filling) rounds.

After the afternoon Zohor prayers, (and the tummy has sort of thinned down a bit), then at about 3.00 pm further visits will be made to about two or three other relatives or friends in town, ending in the late evening, in time for Asar prayers.

Then after dinner and Maghrib prayers, the rest of the night is usually spent watching the many television entertainment shows. It is however common for friends and relatives to come by at night to visit.

And the night time is when children (and also adults) gather and play with sparklers and fireworks, providing the children with the joys of the celebrations. Playing with fires or fiery things at night is always fun for children.

Well, there are more fun and exciting things during Aidil Fitri, like all other festivals in Kelantan and Malaysia, than I can ever write here.

Shawal and Aidil Fitri also means a month of open houses in the towns, and one in which all races in Malaysia share in celebrating, by visiting their Malay friends and neighbors – a Malaysian phenomenon rather unique in this world.

And foreigners and tourists in town usually join in this joyous occasion at the open houses of public officials and state dignitaries, and, of course, of their office friends and colleagues.

Visiting open houses during Aidil Fitri is a valuable and exciting experience no foreigner or tourist in Kelantan and Malaysia would want to miss.


and as always, from me ...


The Power of Positive Thinking

Key Point
You are what you think. You feel what you want.

Why Think Positively?

All of our feelings, beliefs and knowledge are based on our internal thoughts, both conscious and subconscious. We are in control, whether we know it or not.
Aim high and do your best
We can be positive or negative, enthusiastic or dull, active or passive.

The biggest difference between people is their attitudes. For some, learning is enjoyable and exciting. For others, learning is a drudgery. For many, learning is just okay, something required on the road to a job.

"Most folks are about as happy as they
make up their minds to be."
Abraham Lincoln

Our present attitudes are habits, built from the feedback of parents, friends, society and self, that form our self-image and our world-image.

These attitudes are maintained by the inner conversations we constantly have with ourselves, both consciously and subconsciously.

The first step in changing our attitudes is to change our inner conversations.

What Should We Be Saying?

One approach is called the three C's: Commitment, Control and Challenge.

Make a positive commitment to yourself, to learning, work, family, friends, nature, and other worthwhile causes. Praise yourself and others. Dream of success. Be enthusiastic.

Keep your mind focused on important things. Set goals and priorities for what you think and do. Visualize to practice your actions. Develop a strategy for dealing with problems. Learn to relax. Enjoy successes. Be honest with yourself.

Be courageous. Change and improve each day. Do your best and don't look back. See learning and change as opportunities. Try new things. Consider several options. Meet new people. Ask lots of questions. Keep track of your mental and physical health. Be optimistic.

Studies show that people with these characteristics are winners in good times and survivors in hard times.

Research shows that,
"... people who begin consciously to modify their inner conversations and assumptions report an almost immediate improvement in their performance. Their energy increases and things seem to go better ..."

Commitment, control and challenge help build self-esteem and promote positive thinking. Here are some other suggestions.

7 Suggestions for Building Positive Attitudes
  • In every class, look for positive people to associate with.
  • In every lecture, look for one more interesting idea.
  • In every chapter, find one more concept important to you.
  • With every friend, explain a new idea you've just learned.
  • With every teacher, ask a question.
  • With yourself, keep a list of your goals, positive thoughts and actions.
  • Remember, you are what you think, you feel what you want.

10 Reasons You're Not Rich

Many people assume they aren't rich because they don't earn enough money. If I only earned a little more, I could save and invest better, they say.

The problem with that theory is they were probably making exactly the same argument before their last several raises. Becoming a millionaire has less to do with how much you make, it's how you treat money in your daily life.

The list of reasons you may not be rich doesn't end at 10. Caring what your neighbors think, not being patient, having bad habits, not having goals, not being prepared, trying to make a quick buck, relying on others to handle your money, investing in things you don't understand, being financially afraid and ignoring your finances.

Here are 10 possible reasons you aren't rich:

You care what your car looks like: A car is a means of transportation to get from one place to another, but many people don't view it that way. Instead, they consider it a reflection of themselves and spend money every two years or so to impress others instead of driving the car for its entire useful life and investing the money saved.

You feel entitlement: If you believe you deserve to live a certain lifestyle, have certain things and spend a certain amount before you have earned to live that way, you will have to borrow money. That large chunk of debt will keep you from building wealth.

You lack diversification: There is a reason one of the oldest pieces of financial advice is to not keep all your eggs in a single basket. Having a diversified investment portfolio makes it much less likely that wealth will suddenly disappear.

You started too late: The magic of compound interest works best over long periods of time. If you find you're always saying there will be time to save and invest in a couple more years, you'll wake up one day to find retirement is just around the corner and there is still nothing in your retirement account.

You don't do what you enjoy: While your job doesn't necessarily need to be your dream job, you need to enjoy it. If you choose a job you don't like just for the money, you'll likely spend all that extra cash trying to relieve the stress of doing work you hate.

You don't like to learn: You may have assumed that once you graduated from college, there was no need to study or learn. That attitude might be enough to get you your first job or keep you employed, but it will never make you rich. A willingness to learn to improve your career and finances are essential if you want to eventually become wealthy.

You buy things you don't use: Take a look around your house, in the closets, basement, attic and garage and see if there are a lot of things you haven't used in the past year. If there are, chances are that all those things you purchased were wasted money that could have been used to increase your net worth.

You don't understand value: You buy things for any number of reasons besides the value that the purchase brings to you. This is not limited to those who feel the need to buy the most expensive items, but can also apply to those who always purchase the cheapest goods. Rarely are either the best value, and it's only when you learn to purchase good value that you have money left over to invest for your future.

Your house is too big: When you buy a house that is bigger than you can afford or need, you end up spending extra money on longer debt payments, increased taxes, higher upkeep and more things to fill it. Some people will try to argue that the increased value of the house makes it a good investment, but the truth is that unless you are willing to downgrade your living standards, which most people are not, it will never be a liquid asset or money that you can ever use and enjoy.

You fail to take advantage of opportunities: There has probably been more than one occasion where you heard about someone who has made it big and thought to yourself, "I could have thought of that." There are plenty of opportunities if you have the will and determination to keep your eyes open.

Monday, August 4, 2008

How UiTMT Can Improve Their English

Nowadays, many universities in Malaysia are using English as their main languages including Mara University Of Technology. What I would like to write today is how UiTMT student can improve their English.

One of the many ways is UiTMT administration must do is to make a rule that student must speak in English in class. Furthermore, a signboard or memo must to write in English in the campus area. Students must remember that learning is a gradual process. They also must define their learning objectives early such as “what they want to learn and why?” they also must reading English newspaper or listening radio in English.

Another ways is use the internet. The internet is the most exciting ways, unlimited English resource that anyone could imagine and it is right at finger tips. When a student wants to speak in English fluently, they must communicate with their friends and lecturers. They also have to make exercises such as grammar exercises. They also must be patient while learning process because it maybe takes time.

Besides that, student must move their mouth. Why I said like that? It because understanding something doesn’t mean the muscles of your mouth can produce the sounds. They also must practice speaking what they are learning aloud. It may seem strange, but it is very effective.

For the conclusion, student must overcome English in order to be success in their study because English is using widely in university and all around the world and to make sure that this university wants to be a world class university in 2020 can be achieved.

Monday, July 14, 2008


My name Mohd Afiq Bin Ismail...This is my first time experience to have a blog..Right now, I has become a blogger because I have my own blog...I would like to thanks to my BEL 260 lecturer,Miss Syazwani because with her help,I can make my own blog...So,now I would like to introduce myself first...I was born in Kg. Bukit Cina,Ketereh at 16 November 1988 in the year of dragon..I has 7siblings in my family and I'm the fifth..

When i get boring, I will listen to music...My favourite music is metal and post punk..I also loved to watch cartoon and anime like Spongebob Squarepants and Bleach..Before I came to UiTM Dungun,i was study in Muar,Johor for 1 year taking a Tool&Die course...In UiTM,I'm taking a Diploma in Office Management and Technology..Here in UiTM,I meet a lot a good and bad friends..However,I loved them very much..