Thursday, October 2, 2008

Happy Raya!

Credits to Yume for the 'inedible' ketupat! xD

It is finally the sensational season after a full month of fasting, forgiveness, and delight. To all Muslims in Malaysia, it is a special time for all to return back to their respective home towns regardless of location, and reunite with distant family members longing to see each other.

Eventhough Hari Raya is a very joyous day for children for this is the day where adults are extra generous, the children should not just derive pleasure from receiving money tokens or 'duit raya' alone, rather they would have appreciate more on reunion, having their sins forgivven, and indulging on Malay delicacies and snacks for the sweet-toothed.

The thing is, the spirit of celebrating Aidilfitri is essential to Islamic societies all over the world, but it has taken on a different but unique and deeper approach in the harmonious multicultural society of Malaysia. Badawi, our Prime Minister, in his recent Hari Raya speech, said that Aidilfitri is a month to forgive and strengthen ties, as such Malaysian should foster and strengthen national unity.

I support this statement from the PM himself. In fact, multicutural unity among different races in Malaysia which comprise of Malays, Chinese, Indians, and other ethnic groups has long been Malaysia's national identity since pre-Independence and all the way after 51 years after gaining independency. This strong sense of integrity among Malaysians to uphold the spirit of mutual respect, has given birth to a progressive and peaceful society in the developing country of Malaysia.

The spirit of Aidilfitri especially through the traditional concept of celebrating the festival in an Open House by welcoming everyone of every race, culture and religion to join in has influenced us, in a positive aspect, to accept the differences within ourselves, and furthermore bridging the gap too. As I remembered an excerpt from the holy book of Quran, Prophet Muhammad once said that we should cherish each and everyone of us by opening our hands and giving them a warm and hearty reception.

Although being a non-Muslim myself, I have celebrated this festive season by going back to my 'kampung' with my family, and being together to have a good dinner and even had scoops of Baskin Robbins ice-cream on the way home. Sadly there weren't any Raya discounts on ice-cream!

The sun has long set, and it's nearing 3 in the morning now when I was typing this. However, I believe that the spirit of Aidilfitri should continue and not be perceived as being seasonal like waiting for a tree to bear its fruits.

Selamat Hari Raya Aidilfitri to every single one of you out there!

(I'm in a fetish for ketupats)

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