This creator’s series of books, such as the Quran, often surprises his visitors, but to him, no person ought to shy away from reading up approximately every other faith. I HAD one of the most interesting interviews remaining week – my fellow journalists from Sinar Harian, the most extensively examine Bahasa Malaysia daily within the nation, desired to feature me in my series of books on Islam and the Quran. The media institution had just kicked off its annual Malaysia #QuranHour, with Muslims across the United States of American congregating in mosques to recite the Quran en masse for an hour.
As part of the marketing campaign, Karangkraf (which publishes Sinar Harian) chairman and institution CEO Datuk Hussamuddin Yaacub, had known as me to searching for the assist of Star Media Group, for which I with no trouble agreeing. I instructed him my series of books on Islam and the Quran made up handiest a modest section of my library; however, the newsman in him, and its editorial adviser, Datuk Abdul Jalil Ali, stuck the information perspective. My fellow Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia alumnus also wanted me to talk approximately my private library as a human hobby table to generate aid for the event.
Visitors to my domestic often specific wonder – which amuses me rather – after seeing for themselves how a great deal of an interest I actually have in this situation. After all, I actually have a respectable collection of Bibles, books on Christianity, Buddhism, Hinduism, even Baha’is. While I am Christian, I do no longer see why non-Muslims ought to be fearful of learning Islam and broadening our know-how on this faith. Non-Muslims in Malaysia need to have open thoughts about this. Its miles of direction is favorable to deepen our understanding of Islam as we live in a Muslim majority.
Malaysians, regardless of their race and faith, ought to additionally not be afraid to apprehend and appreciate another faith. Let us remind ourselves that each religion pontificate accurate values and, virtually, there are greater commonalities than differences in these books on religion. My journey in expertise Islam in all likelihood commenced when I turned into sitting for my Sixth Form exam, which changed into then called the Higher School Certificate (HSC), now referred to as the Sijil Tinggi Pelajaran Malaysia (STPM), which is seemed because of the university front examination.
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I signed up for the Islamic History and Malay Literature subjects, which required me to read and memorize the entire Sejarah Melayu (Malay Annals) and numerous Indonesian classics.
The first few months have been terrifying, and I was puzzled about what I had gotten myself into as preparations for the exam, worried by and large reading on my own. I began to have doubts about my very own choices. But soon, I fell in love with these subjects as I started to analyze extra about them, treating them as part of an adventure, if now not an adventure. By the time I won an area at UKM within the 1980s, I voluntarily asked to be protected in the Malay Letters Department, as a minor course at some point of my first year, where I had the chance to listen to speeches via the most important Malay literature icons within the United States of America.
But I also found out that during UKM, every student was required to bypass the Islamic Civilisations paper conducted through the Islamic Faculty. It becomes an obligatory direction, and if a pupil failed it, there has been no manner the character could graduate. This was more than 30 years ago, and the requirement has remained. The thought of getting to skip an examination of Islam ought to have horrified the majority of first-yr non-Muslim college students, but for a few cause, most people took it as some other step in schooling.
I wasn’t certain if we had been young, reckless, or just harmless, but I saved an open mind approximately the entirety. And having towering figures just like the past due to Datuk Fadzil Noor and Datuk Dr. Haron Din, each becoming big names in PAS subsequently, to educate us, become inspiring. Haron, particularly, was an excellent storyteller and could render the lecture theater awe-struck as we held on to his every phrase.
It turned into simply a course on primary Islam. And when it becomes time to take a seat for the examination, maximum people have been quite confident of passing, and most people did. I did not get an A, but my hobby grew from there. It amused many of us UKM graduates why politicians made a fuss by creating controversies after they discovered approximately this type of path, which we had gone through many years ago. It wasn’t something new to me.
I can say that most non-Muslims did no longer become Muslims and vice versa, Muslim students who attended Catholic schools, didn’t come to be Christians. Fears are manufactured through politicians and wannabes only. The Christian brothers were missionaries and virtually evangelists. By the time I started working, it had become almost herbal that I started to accumulate my ebook series at the Quran, with the maximum latest Al-Quran Al-Karim, a present from Hussamuddin.
But it’s far the world elegance exceptional courses from our Islamic Arts Museum which honestly inspire me, along with Faith and Power: The Role of Women and Al-Quran: The Sacred Art of Revelation. Despite now not knowing enough about Islam, that did no longer prevent me from appreciating the splendor of Muslim calligraphy in Nun Wa Al Qalam, some other e-book of the Islamic Arts Museum. My ardor for accumulating those books has grown, even though this may be a high-priced pursuit.
But the point is that this – see the splendor and positives of all religions. From there, we can see greater commonalities, especially the values of compassion, persistence, forgiveness, and recognition. The Quran is without a doubt precise as compared to other holy books. For one, it is the simplest e-book that begins each chapter with praises to God, maintaining “within the call of God, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.”