Tag Archives: malay

What if I was a Muslim convert?


An old Jewish scripture in Kabul's only synagogue.

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What if I was a Muslim convert?
By Zan Azlee

A lot of people say that to be born a Muslim is something wonderful and lucky. I was born a Muslim but sometimes, I don’t feel so lucky about it.

It’s not that I felt unlucky to be a Muslim. I just wondered how it felt for someone who was a not a Muslim deciding to embrace Islam as a religion.

My experience as a born Muslim in Malaysia is a little bit different than what I imagined a Muslim convert would experience and that’s why I wonder.

In my mind, for someone who is not a Muslim wanting to be a Muslim, he or she must have had a huge epiphany to be convinced into converting. And that must be a wonderful feeling.

I, on the other hand, grew up learning about Islam. I went to religious classes when I was a young kid when I didn’t understand the significance of it.

What I learned were the habits and rituals of the religion. I mean, what else can you teach a kid who had not reached mental and physical maturity yet.

As I grew older, the rituals and habits became more intense as the teachers who taught me began to scare me into practicing them, convincing me that if I strayed, I would be punished.

It was only when I got older, and began looking for another meaning to Islam and being a Muslim that I have come to appreciate the religion and to understand it’s beauty.

So, back to these converts. [Click to read the full article at The Malaysian Insider]

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Mob mentality is worse online


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Mob mentality is worse online
By Zan Azlee

What happens when a snatch thief gets caught by the public? We’ve seen it happen many times where the public turns into a mob and beats them up.

Hey, I understand the anger. My wife has been a victim of a snatch thief before and if I was there with her, I would probably turn into the Incredible Hulk.

If you were a victim, then by all means claim self-defence. But if you were part of a mob that just wanted to lynch the bloody guy? What would that make you?

And so this leads to the big case regarding the viral video of the aggressive tudung-clad woman driver who took a steering wheel to an old uncle who had slightly hit her car.

She screamed for money, she called out racial slurs, she was rude, and don’t forget that steering lock! She was swinging it against the uncle’s car (thank God not at the uncle).

If I was the old uncle, I would probably fight back. If it was my father and I was with him, I would probably fight back too (but knowing my father, he would fight harder than me!).

But I was not in that situation and I was not a victim. I am just an ordinary member of the public who happened to watch the video online.

The online reaction to the video was massive. There was anger and condemnation, which was rightfully so. But it suddenly took an ugly turn towards something well… ugly. [Click to read the full article at English.AstroAwani.Com]

Saying sorry and meaning it too!


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Saying sorry and meaning it too!
By Zan Azlee

“Please say sorry to Dylan, Athena,” I say to her after she deliberately snatches a toy that her cousin is playing with.

“No,” she replies.

“You have to say sorry when you do something wrong.”

“No.”

“Athena! You better say sorry now!”

“No!”

“You say sorry now or I’ll put you in your room!”

“No!”

(And she starts screaming and crying while I sigh a huge one!)

Being a father has it challenges. Especially when the kid is still a three-year-old mischievous girl. But you learn things as you go along.

One of the things I felt has been a major challenge is to teach my daughter right from wrong and, more importantly, to realise when she is wrong and to apologise for it.

I know that many parenting experts say that you should never force your child to say sorry. She needs to learn that what she does hurts others and that it is wrong.

Then she can sorry and really mean it. [Click to read the full article at The Malaysian Insider]

Germany beat Brazil, thanks to Malaysia


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Germany beat Brazil, thanks to Malaysia
By Zan Azlee

Don’t underplay Malaysia’s role in contributing towards Germany’s record thrashing of Brazil in yesterday’s World Cup semi-final.

Yes, it’s true that Malaysia has never qualified for the World Cup. And yes, in the past decades, we have only been champions in the Southeast Asian region.

But did you know that one of Germany’s most lethal strikers in this year’s tournament, Thomas Muller, was actually discovered by a Malaysian?

Former Malaysian international footballer, Lim Teong Kim, trained a young Muller when he was based in Germany as the U-19 Bayern Munich assistant coach.

In fact, Muller even thanked Lim for developing his skills when he won FIFA’s Best Young Player award in 2006. So stake your claim Malaysia!

Also, remember the recent Thomas Cup tournament in India? The one where we lost at our best chance to win back the cup after 22 years?

Japan, who had never been a badminton powerhouse, beat the Malaysian team in dramatic and stylish fashion to win the cup for the first time ever.

But Malaysia shouldn’t be too upset about it. Kento Momota, their second singles player who thrashed Malaysia’s Chong Wei Feng in straight sets, had a coach.

And who would his coach be? Of course, it’s a Malaysian by the name of Izuan Ibrahim. So Malaysia can lay claim to winning the Thomas Cup as well!

Also, let’s not forget how we tried to also lay claim to one of the world’s best golfing talent, Fijian Vijay Singh, who lived in Malaysian for a few years before becoming successful. [Click to read the full article at English.AstroAwani.Com]

Should we be worried about Malaysian militants?


Zan with his new buddy (ANP) at the bombed-riddled Darul Aman Palace next to the National Museum of Afghanistan.

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Should we be worried about Malaysian militants?
By Zan Azlee

What motivates a healthy, young man who has everything going for him in life, to leave everything behind and offer himself for a violent cause in a land far away?

It’s a big mystery to me as to why Malaysian men have been flocking to the Middle East to fight in a war that, to me, doesn’t really concern them.

Sure, Muslims are involved in the fighting there and these Malaysianswho are going are also Muslims. But just because Muslims are involved doesn’t mean that it is a holy war.

When I was in Afghanistan, I had a fixer and translator who was a young man in his mid twenties, an intelligent Afghan who was studying law and working as a journalist part time.

Although he was very interested in the current affairs of his country, he was not one to condone violence and war. He thought the pen (and camera) is more powerful.

Shortly after coming back to Malaysia, my fixer friend contacted me via Facebook and told me that his father, a government official, was assassinated. [Click to read the full article at English.AstroAwani.Com]