Do not burn your house down

I love this. 😭😭😭

Dear Juliet

I visited my therapist today. He said something peculiar after I droned on and on about how I hate the scars imprinted on my skin, the lines weaving their way around my waist and stomach. For half an hour; he listened, nodding along as I told stories about how I refuse to live inside this meat sack that continues to push me out.

He said, “don’t burn your own house down, no matter the reason.” I did not know what to reply. He continued, “people have their reasons but it does not justify the damage or demolition. Sometimes something would break or stop working; a burnt-out lightbulb or a leaky sink. Rather than fix it—”

“Why would anyone burn it?” Ignoring the sarcasm poking fun at his insight. He spoke without skipping a beat, “Often, that idea has not popped into their head. There are people who would ignore it…

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“Do You Want To See Magic?”

(c) Google

Based on a true story.

Disclaimer: Names of places and people will be changed for private reasons. Every events and details will be covered to the best of my abilities. There will be some changes, if details are too personal or obvious to be revealed.

The purpose of this story was to raise awareness on mental health, suicide, myths on demon possession, infidelity/cheating, financial crisis, faith, students being left behind this pandemic, and all case in one.

•••

This is a story from someone I know, let’s just call her Faith (23). She’s an eldest among six siblings, let’s just call them (in order of birth): Troy (21), Winry (17), David (15), Solomon (13), and Natalia (7).

During that time, her family was going through financial crisis just like everyone else in pandemic. Her mother had no choice but to work from a faraway place, whilst leaving her husband with all their children.

Faith, at age 23, was working on her way to her graduate studies so she and her sister Winry, a boarding highschool student, decided to live in one of the houses their family rented from their relatives.

Leaving their father, Sam, with the other siblings namely, Troy, David, Solomon & Natalia.

It was that one evening that changed the normalcy of their troubles, from facing financial crisis to facing one of the biggest trial of their entire lives that’s uncommon from every family: witnessing a demon.

Troy, who happens to be a very loving and responsible brother and son, was inevitably struggling with his University studies. With online classes being the norm, living near forest areas and crappy signals didn’t even seem to help him in his endeavors.

Struggling to become a successful student, aiming high seems impossible to be reach for him. It was also not working because without his mother and sisters around, all the chores and responsibilities has fallen under his name being the second eldest son.

It can’t be helped, their father was busy with work also and all their money either goes to the loans or necessities and nothing else.

Troy, along with the other younger siblings, are also struggling to perfect their online class attendance that sometimes they had no choice but to excuse themselves due to simply having no money to afford load as well– or again, crappy signal.

That is the cycle of the poverty they faced: paying loans, living through freebies or kindness from their relatives, & drinking water if there isn’t any food nor snack around.

Due to Troy’s very loving nature, he was apparently reported to be very sensitive as well. According to Faith, it was a normal thing in their family. Being sensitive was in their genes. They didn’t think much of it until later on, one of them caused a scene.

It was around May of 2021 when the siblings slowly noticed how their father, without their mother around, was getting too close to someone in his nightly calls. All in the excuse of ‘work’-related talks. But they’re not dumb enough not to notice the sweet lines along those private calls, they knew then and there that it was not just merely a talk.

It was his mistress that they siblings soon found out. Faith, Winry and David, knowing the playboy and friendly nature of their father didn’t act by their emotions and hopes things would soon end with their father’s affair.

But it was hopeless. Their parents are fighting through calls, his father was too busy pleasing the woman he talked, it was obvious divorcing papers would soon take place.

Faith, being the eldest, was not prepared for the future consequences and was mentally disturbed during her studies. It was not a very good timing for it to be around. They were all torn on either just telling their mother about it or just invade such private relationship then destroy it.

The reason they couldn’t reveal it to their mother was because, all those years their mother had setbacks and delays to get a job and when finally she has one, one that’s inevitably located far, this uncalled event happened out of all time. They knew their mother was too obsessed on their father that they fear she might impulsively quit her job just for this stupidity.

So they started a mission amongst themselves under their sibling groupchat, ‘prevent worse case scenario’ operation to prevent their mother from leaving her job, and hopefully try and tore their father’s affairs slowly. It was a devious but inevitable mission, it was for the sake of their family.

Winry suggested the brothers, Troy, David and Solomon to watch and investigate their father’s wrongdoings. Being a feminist herself, she couldn’t tolerate cheating being normalized on men. Faith & Troy, being the religious eldest duo around, supported her opinion as cheating was a form of infidelity.

All that aside, Faith, Winry and David still mentally braced themselves if things work out the wrong way. Being a part of a broken family doesn’t seem to be a faraway reality.

But Troy was different. Again, being the most sensitive around, he refused to have this family tore apart.

With this, alongside his troubled academic performance, no one knew he was slowly losing himself on the long run. The siblings who were used to his hypersensitive nature and stubborness, didn’t think it could lead to worse case scenario – the one thing they needed to prevent… failed, unexpectedly.

Unfortunately, Troy couldn’t hold himself any longer. Reports from David and Solomon about him was growing more and more concerning. He was screaming during his prayer time, he was blasting off religious chants on the room, he was growing more strict with everyone around illogically.

Surely, he is known to be weird. But this was far from his usual personality. Winry and David suggested to their big sister Faith to talk Troy on his ground – but it was too late.

One unfateful night, their mother called. And of all people, she called Troy – her most ‘trusted’ son and all-knowing ‘Mama’s boy’ around. Due to the signal, Troy was in the window screaming his lungs off telling their mom, “DAD IS CHEATING ON YOU!!!” it was so loud that the entire house and probably the nearby neighborhood near their window have heard.

Surely, Troy was sometimes immature. But this was out of the place. Everyone stood silent, her mother being surprised tells off how crazy her son is. Telling him to stop spreading lies, but Troy couldn’t take it.

The call was off and Troy walked outside where every relative was hanging around in the living room. Yes, due to financial crisis they were living in an extended home with their relatives. They had no choice.

And it was as if correct timing, their father entered the scene who just finished his call from his siblings — not the mistress surprisingly.

During this time, Troy is no longer in his body. The sight of his father, with his phone, broke the last wire of keeping him sane.

Quickly, he closed the main entrance door with a bang and everyone caught his attention, “What’s wrong with him?” and behold, his eyes were glaring off from his own father until finally, he shouted “YOU’RE CHEATING ON MOM WITH ANOTHER WOMAN!!!” it was so loud, every ears in the living room heard it. David and Solomon, who were following him around, have their jaws dropped.

Of course, being a man with his pride, their father was shamed publicly. An inevitable attack soon took place, and everyone of the relatives tried to stop them both.

Troy, suddenly became a coward with the sight of his father growling at him, his defense was “HOW COULD YOU ATTACK ME?! I’M YOUR OWN SON!” it was all too crazy that David was recording all this and at the same time, sending it to his sisters Faith and Winry who lived afar.

Faith, again disturbed in her studies, couldn’t stand still to what was happening.

They both questioned, has their brother Troy finally gone crazy? They knew he was stubborn and fails to notice his surroundings around back then. But this was, again, way beyond what they normally knew he could do. This was too much.

“So, what should we do?” Winry asked.

“I don’t know, I don’t know!” Faith repeatedly answered.

Sam, their father, was comforted by David while on the other hand, the relatives had a talk with Troy regarding his actions.

While they were talking him off on his insanity, they knew one thing that was happening to him. The person they’re talking to is no longer Troy, he was communicating in different languages, making random conversations, no sensible topics and at one point, was laughing insanely and convincing everyone he’s not crazy judging by the look of their eyes. He even counted one to one hundred, literally, just to prove his sanity to which all failed to convince.

They finally hold him off, and their uncle who seems to have an idea on what’s going on with Troy suggested they see an expert on, finally saying the words, ‘demon posession’.

All the family members couldn’t believed that Troy was possessed. They used to see this in movies, in other people, it was somehow normal on Asian cultures, but to encounter it with their own loved one, worst, a brother or a son, made it seem all too unreal.

Hesitant, they drove Troy off to an expert on the same night. During the process, he was just laughing off the trials and rituals done to him. Thinking they’re crazy for thinking he’s crazy or possessed. He even chanted and repeated the same words, the bible verses, being used to him.

The expert they talked to that night concluded, he’s a lost case. He even added, it seemed Troy developed a very vulnerable personality that it was a key to such demon to follow him around eversince. The demon knew he was an easy target, the demon was just waiting for an opening.

How did this happened, David asked. Then investigations went further and they remembered how obviously depressed Troy was even before the affairs of their father took place.

Troy used to stay at the rooftop on third floor at 3am in the morning, self-reflecting, and worst staring at the ground. Myths gone around from the old people saying you shouldn’t stay at such a place on such a time but he didn’t care, given his stubborn personality. He wanted to be ‘alone’.

But who knew, spiritually speaking, that it would be such a way to turn things around. To add that they even live near forests, it may not be scientifically explained but people knew the forest is a place to all things unexplainable. Best to stay faraway, or rather put effort on preventing measures.

And to think, that extended home they were living in had history of possessions (not too worst, like Troy did), lots of screaming and depressed individuals, fight scenes uncalled for, nonstop drama, and people seeing ghost stories whether it’d be a joke or something that rings true, all made sense.

Everyone was sensitive in that house. Even their cousins as Faith mentioned, confessed they didn’t feel right living in that area nor visiting it in the first place. With this information, Winry also shared her feelings in that house to which Faith grew surprised. She only lived once in that house but not on the long run, she knew of the unexplainable things going on and it has been a normal thing to everyone who has knowledge of it. But they just brush it off.

Possession and mention of such demon or ghosts was a normal thing in their place, to cut short.

The next day, more experts were invited to visit Troy in their family’s room. From the first step, they admitted to being overwhelmed by their uneasiness of such presence normally not seen by humans. Before even reaching Troy, they already knew the house needed some ritual cleansing to ward off ‘bad spirits’ as they say.

Apparently, in that extended home there were members of the relative who can actually see such beings. Third eye, as what everyone claims. The uncle who was infamous to see such things confessed to seeing a ‘big red guy’ always entering Faith’s family room. He didn’t think much of it until later on. Coincidentally, the experts said the same thing. Inside Troy’s body was indeed possessed by a big red ‘guy/demon’ (in bible words, Satan/Jin) that refused to leave Troy.

They suggested to be kinder in treatment to Troy and avoid triggering him on the long run, plus relatives requested seeking medical help also since this has been related to Troy’s mental health as well. Forcing the family to attract more loans, inevitably.

Unaware of Troy’s demon possession, the siblings who were angered by his actions attacked him personally through their messages. Saying things like he’s crazy and an idiot for making a big thing out of a small problem that could’ve been fixed with just a talk. But no, he had to go all his way around to make a grand performance of shaming.

Troy responded in the most insulting way he could think of, with all the heart emoji’s and nonsense long messages. They were all ready to knock him out of his senses as he’s gone crazy and out of this world, but eventually the news from experts reached them. They had to adjust despite their triggering emotions. Speechless, dumbfounded and mixed feelings were present. Angry, bewildered, surprised, sympathy, worried… it was overwhelming.

Hoping that things will calm down easily, they thought wrong. Troy was even more possessed as the days passby.

One time, Sam the father asked Troy — whom he thought was back to normal — to buy things for him. Normally when Troy found out there’s no supply to the things his father asked him, he would just come back and report about it, but hours passed by. Minutes until midnight, and everyone grew worried Troy wasn’t back.

Search party went on and they found Troy on the most farthest place anyone could think of, ‘what was he thinking?’ He was with someone who doesn’t look like it has good intentions. Because it was in the middle of the night, and the dude was in his motorcycle along with the innocent yet big 21 year old guy, Troy.

Sam got angry asking why Troy hasn’t been back, “It’s because the stuff you asked wasn’t in the store. I had to look somewhere else, duh!” Troy replied. It wasn’t really an important stuff and their father could’ve dismissed it if it was out of stock, still this event worried them again. It’s not normal.

Truly, it was such a cheesy thing having someone go through such measures to find that one thing you asked, but if it weren’t for the previous events that happened few days ago, everyone wouldn’t be worried by that time.

Second time, it was morning and the three brothers were in their family room. Their father has gone off to work. Troy, out of the blue, asked his brothers David & Solomon a very silly question.

“Do you want to see magic?” confused, both of them just went along with Troy.

“Alright, both of you close your eyes and then count to three. Okay? Once you opened them, you won’t see me!” Troy giggled. Worried and confused, David thought Troy was probably proposing to play hide & seek despite their age.

They closed their eyes as instructed, and counted to three. When they opened it, they went ahead and looked for Troy. When they found him, they saw him inside the bathroom, sticking his head into the bowl.

Weirded out, they knew something again was off with Troy. David immediately reported the case to his sisters.

Third time, this time Troy suggested another magic trick, “Do you want to see magic?” David was already growing worried and declined. Troy went on, “Oh come on! You’ll love it! I will fly in this magic trick!” having knowledge of his suicidal background, they knew he would do the unthinkable. E.g. jump off a roof thinking he could fly. So they strongly declined and threatened him if he would do something weird again.

Fourth time, inside their room once again. David still refused to believe Troy is possessed by some sort of demon. He believed there’s a scientific explanation behind all this, but lo and behold. Their brother Troy was showing evidences of extraordinary occurrences.

First, he can carry a heavy master bed with one hand that took them by surprise, second he was acting weird making angry growling noises like a dog at random times, third he was growing more suspicious of his surroundings detecting things as if someone was following him around acting anxiously like he was being watched, and fourth the most weird extraordinary event where he claimed he can see things not normally seen by humans.

David asked, “Well, how can you be so sure you can see them? Prove it!” he was trying to joke things off with Troy but apparently, further events scared him even more.

Troy was staring at David and said, “Get out of your position. They’re standing near you,” David felt goosebumps and it didn’t even help when the bag that was perfectly placed above the cabinet he was standing, suddenly fall on its own near him, without air or strong gravity to push it.

“What the f***!” David cursed. Whether it was a coincidence or not, that didn’t fail to scare him. Troy was slowly glaring at the unseen where David left, and they already knew something was definitely out of place.

Fifth time, they were all sleeping peacefully when one of them woke up and saw Troy was no longer in his bed. Worst, they saw the main entrance and gates were opened. They knew Troy escaped and went somewhere else in the middle of the night.

With the help of relatives, they found Troy running inhumanely fast somewhere else with bare feet. Chased by three dogs that didn’t seem to bother him, he even managed to kick one out and suddenly his silhouette was gone in the dark streets.

Sam’s phone rang and thankfully it was Troy, asking to be rescued. When asked where he was, he said he was at the rooftop of such three storey building. They asked to turn his flashlights on from his phone, and they eventually found him.

The weird thing was, there were no traces of where he could’ve used as an entrance to reach the rooftop of the building. According to him, he simply said he climbed off the walls which they still couldn’t believe.

Worried that his son might jump off, knowing Troy was in the rooftop with no railings. Sam gently yelled, “Yes, my son! Please, stay in your lane. Don’t move! We’ll get you out of there!”

But apparently, Troy was again mentally disturbed. He was screaming his lungs off, shouting things like “Get off of me!!! Get out of my head!!!” and even calling his dad for help. His scream was too loud, it caused a commotion in the neighborhood. David, again present in the events, recorded the entire thing and sent it to his sisters who were apparently asleep at that time. All the family members were feeling ashamed of his crazy scandal. This was a history of their family unforgotten.

Finally, they got Troy and rushed him back to the house. This time, they had no choice but to tie him up. He was growing even more and more crazy. Singing random things, making personal request, and at once accidentally peeing his pants. This went on for a week, Sam wasn’t able to sleep for days and the remaining siblings in the household namely David, Solomon and Natalia had to sleep in their relatives’ room.

David and Solomon offered assistance to their father. Troy was already suggesting of wanting to kill himself. Again, all this reported back to the sisters. Apparently, the previous events already reached their mother eversince. She was just trying to hold her ground and hoping things would be okay.

But because the events grew concerning where Troy suggested he wants to be dead, she had to file an excuse and visit back home.

According to Faith, their father reported he had stopped his affair and suggested his daughters — who’s numbers was actually accessed by the mistress, yes he revealed it and was sorry — that if ever they received an unknown call from someone (of a female voice, obviously) asking his name, they should deny or block it.

Fast forward, they finally got him checked to the hospital from a neuropsychiatrist who apparently didn’t believe in such things like demon possessions or whatnot. Scientifically, he diagnosed Troy with anxiety. Saying yes, hearing things or growing more worried around his surroundings was indeed a normal symptom. His senses were at his highest, and the doctor suggested that the family cooperated on lessening his triggers whilst providing medications, which were anti-depressants and a pill to calm him down. The doctor suggested to see Troy after two weeks with medications.

With this hope, everything went back to normal. Their mother came back to work, their father ignoring his mistress and focused on his son’s mental health issues and Faith regained back her focus on her studies… hopefully.

According to Sam, Troy was back to normal thanks to his medications. And when they finally attempted to visit back to the doctor after two weeks, apparently… he was triggered again.

Night before seeing the doctor, Troy and Faith were having conversations like a normal siblings do. But because their topic was about him going crazy last time he explained his side to which Faith asked, how was he feeling during those times.

Troy said, he was perfectly feeling normal though out of place. He felt someone was controlling him, and he had no idea. All the conversations was supposed to run peacefully until Faith made the biggest mistake of saying David’s recorded films of Troy’s previous events was in their groupchat. Curious, Troy who hasn’t been online for a while checked to see the videos.

And suddenly, he grew frantic and affected once again. Faith who was playing with Natalia noticed Troy was growing more conscious of his surroundings. Often staring at the dark places of their house weirdly and checking the windows like an angry dog, thanks to the angry growling noise he makes.

Her father and the rest of the siblings was inside the room and it was only her, Troy and Natalia in the living room.

She was growing more worried with the knowledge of the symptoms and same events reported from her brother David, fighting off her instinct and goosebumps. She secretly checked if the main entrance was closed and was ready to scream help if anything happens.

At first she denied what was currently happening ’cause she believed Troy was cured. She was telling Troy to stop checking the dark places or windows until suddenly, Troy smirked.

“Hey sis… do you want to see magic?”

How My Dua’s Got Accepted… Miraculously (+My Struggle Story)

(c) Facebook: Science & Faith

Assalamo’alāmu’alaykum w.w., peace and blessings be upon you reader. So I posted this in one group, and I feel like sharing here what I wrote. Reading the comments made me realized my story was same also with anyone, I felt overwhelmed. So with my faith-oriented goals, hope this life pieces of mine inspire you as a muslim through your struggles.

“So apparently ‘My Tahajjud & Du’a Coming True Stories:’ was recognized and I was surprised, even at the comments. Though, one thing I noticed was asking me to include them in my du’as. I will, but here’s another revelation as to why miracles have happened in my life that I never expected. And I’m going to share it with you, of course with a (long) background story of why I did it.

So, long ago. As I’ve said in my previous post — I was really depressed. I was an underachiever in academics eversince I entered highschool.

When I was a kid, I was exposed to toxic loved ones who never appreciated my efforts in studying because everyone was an overachiever compared to me, who was only talented in art. When everyone was the first honor in their class, I’m only the fourth.

Normally, I should be appreciated but no, my harsh reality was that I was even called stupid and not worthy. Not only that, I experienced sexual assault when I was you ng through being groped when I was innocent and having no idea what those old men did to me.

And it’s not even helping when I reported it to my mum and she would call me out for not defending myself or sometimes ignoring it or sometimes be blind to it instead of doing something about it and sometimes she would tell me not to tell or report anyone because it would be shameful.

Other than being caged by overprotective parents, I was also mostly controlled (hence why, I said in my previous post that my parents plans everything for me but I decided to stood up) my entire life. It was suffocating. And yes, beat up too since I am one of those children victims of corporal punishment. I remember walking in school with bruises under my uniform, either evident or not.

I know my parents was only doing it for my good but honestly, I’m not expecting one to be perfect yet they could’ve atleast treat me like a human being and not a doll for dressup, etc.

The words I usually receive when I was young was ‘What do you think your relatives will think if you do this? Aren’t you ashamed?‘ or words like if I got successful like I won or got high score at something, they would automatically ask if anyone got higher than me or someone who got same score as me and instead of appreciating they would go ‘Well, why didn’t you do better?‘, etc.

I was a child of gaslighting parents who loves to manipulate me by saying I owe them alot in this world. Plus, I was raised in both toxic feminity & masculinity culture where I would be called ugly if I got dark skin hence I never stayed too long outside when I was young, or that if I’m ugly and stupid my future husband would kick me out, etc.

Plus it was also not helping that the males of my culture were glorified and not asked to do anything. I knew back then that I didn’t want to get married and I wished I was a guy because of their privilege.

Fast forward, it’s already clear I was depressed I carried along until my college days. And graduating college is one of the most triggering events for me, it was this this same year that all the worst case I never imagined happened in my life.

My brother almost died from a severe illness at the same time my father got jailed for something he didn’t do. Not only that, I got the same disease my brother has which resulted in me excusing from my internship (requirement for graduating). My family got scammed out of money. My grandfather died, that I was close to. I was intellectually mocked in internship. I’ve heard lots of bad rumors about me that I didn’t know which weren’t true by the way, and worst — I didn’t graduate on time.

I remember I was one of the two students out of 60 who didn’t graduate. It was the most shameful thing in my life, it also didn’t help that those previous toxic loved ones who mentally abused me back when I was young actually expected it and we’re disappointed from what I did.

I was really feeling like dying. I don’t know what I did to make them hate me like this. Or worst, biased. Like, when their close friends failed they would sympathize like a good human being they are but when I failed, not only were they disappointed but they were expecting it like I was an example of a failure in our family.

Yes, I had thoughts of killing myself, dying, etc. too. I was too depressed I didn’t wanna face anybody. At one point, I kept asking Allāh (S.W.T.) — why me? What did I ever do to deserve this?

And yes, I admit I forgotten faith because of it. I drifted away from Allāh (S.W.T.) because of too much disappointments in my life. Though during those trials before drifting off, I had good moments and blessed moments plus I never let go of my faith. It was just during this triggering moments that I had enough.

Thankfully, I graduated during summer. Although sadly, I didn’t get to experience marching in the stage receiving my diploma. I only got my diploma in the office. It was actually a sad experience for me. I’ve long turn away from Him for several months until finally the next year, I was not happy as usual.

Nothing has changed, and for some reasons… that was the time I realized I only wanted to peace. So yes, referring back to my previous post it was my first time praying tahajjud (as my way to get back) and yes, some miracles really happened.

(Side note: I will post my ‘Tahajjud & Dua Coming True Stories’ soon.)

NOW, HERE ARE THE THINGS I DID THAT I DIDN’T KNOW WOULD BE RESULT TO MIRACLES I NEVER EXPECTED.

Spoiler alert: they say once you prayed hard, trials become heavier — IT’S TRUE. Seeing my stories already at its worst, there were specific trials that even furthered it.

“Then, why did you still continue to pray harder if you knew your trials are getting heavier than it already seems?”

Because, thanks to experience in life, I was no longer surprised what other trials would befall me. I was just bracing myself for it, you know ‘come what may’… but of course, as human being, I was scared too. I just… put my trust on Allāh (S.W.T.) — tawakkul.

So back to the tahajjud moment, because of that (and the current trial I was going through at that time), I suddenly became curious as to what Islam really is. At first, witnessing that simple miracle motivated me to pray harder and hope for His miracles.

Along the way, I rediscovered Islam and for some reasons, I wanted to find out what our religion was, etc.

WHAT I DID:

• Of course, where do we turn into if we want to find out more about Islam? Internet, which has Google and YouTube. Of course, it took me days to find some legitimate sources. So, I tried joining some Facebook groups to help me cope up.

I watched Islamic YouTube channels out of curioisty… and from watching it (e.g. Rational Believer, iLovU Allāh, Free Qur’an Education, Gems of Wisdom, The Merciful Servant, etc.) — I learnt alot of things I never knew before. My eyes opened to reality and finally understood the wisdom of Islam and why people go through such things. It was through this that I was slowly healing myself. I remembered crying to the videos that struck me, because I thought all this time I was born to be a failure. It was not true. Allāh (S.W.T.) has different purpose for us. SubhanAllāh!

Unfollowing toxic pages that would not contribute well to my well-being because when you get indulged in Islam, you find all haraam things (e.g. Music pages, Love pages, etc.) disturbing.

Following lots of Islamic pages which have helped me remind of Allāh (S.W.T.), and His greatness and how beautiful Islam really is during my break time.

Pondering over the verses I read in the Qur’an, to re-learning how to read in Arabic. It was long ago that I stopped reading Qur’an. So regaining it back, also whilst listening to Qur’an readings on my phone really helped.

Reading the translation of Qur’an, like it was a story book. (I haven’t finished all) And it was more than just a story, there were lessons, there’s science, there were morals, law, justice, etc. It was indeed, GUIDANCE!

Reading all the prophet’s stories, especially Nabi Muhammad (S.A.W.), which have inspired me that not only was I the only facing trials in life, our forefather and especially our prophets has gone through trials too. It made me feel honored if anything else. Alhamdulillāh!

• Plus, due to my dedication in Islam. New learnings usually contribute a lot to new mindset. So from my depressed mindset, I was slowly being bearable to weak human thoughts. With thoughts that, life here in this dunya is a test. I took my challenges with Tawakkul (trust in Allāh), Lahawllāh wa laa quwwata illa billāh (there is no true strength or power, except coming from Allāh) — despite uncertainty. I gained strength and unwavering trust for some reasons to Allāh (S.W.T.).

• I also implemented praying many Sunnah prayers, that I never knew existed before. When there’s a will, there’s a way.

My life revolved around Allāh (S.W.T.) and I fell in love with Our Almighty’s greatness realizing what He has done for me/us was through His perfect knowledge. We can’t comprehend it by human mind, but when you see the ending it was all worth it.

• To implementing fasting every Mon & Thursday, to implementing all Sunnah like smiling, etc.

• To changing what I looked and be conscious of my wardrobe covering.

• To becoming a vegetarian because I learnt that not all meats are halal, because we don’t know what was slaughtered for Allāh (S.W.T.).

• To constant istighfaar (saying Astaghfirullāh 1000x, meaning asking forgiveness) and researching more.

• To secretly making charity, by any means, as a hobby. Helping someone without asking in return, etc. For short, be the kindest not for people but for Allāh (S.W.T.)’s pleasure.

• Plus, I started reading some few hadith books too. Though, I got busy time. I was planning to focus on it soon. Inn shaa Allāh.

Now, here’s the reality that has happened when I was doing all that.

Yes, I was still facing trials during that days I was so devoted to Allāh (S.W.T.). Maybe for me, that was my form of distraction from my another yet painful trial.

If you’re wondering what I went through despite all that devotion I did: I was being bullied shamelessly by someone I lived with. I remembered only wanting peace of my mind, I was an imperfect human being. My parents never taught me proper housing rules, etc. So I was called out by this person a lot. Plus we were living in place full of according to some people, ‘bad spirits’ so being whispered by Satan was common.

Because of this trial, and being used to my harsh reality, despite being hurt ’cause I’m still human I isolated myself and focused on my goal which was Islam.

I persevered and persevered, and found peace whenever I pray because that’s the time this person would be silent.

Yes, this was the trial I faced even with all the devotion I give. It is true that praying harder really attracted more trials.

Question: what made me continue? Am I masochist?

Answer: No, I’m not. Because…

1.) Despite the pain, I guess I was used to life’s harshness on me and used it as my strength because I always knew hatred and questionable fights would come around. Because in Islam, it’s already implemented that this world is nothing but a testing ground.


2.) I could have the choice to stop worshipping but honestly, I am even more depressed without Islam so taking all the pain and going through with it is what I mustered.


3.) I kept thinking of the people who hadbit worst than me, like the Prophets, and thought to myself… if they can do it, why can’t I? I refused to be weak of my desires when I could have the choice to be stronger especially against Satan.


4.) Drifting away from Allāh (S.W.T.) meant I’ll be bound to do haraam things no matter what. And I’ve learned the hard way how doing haraam things have REALLY DESTROYED me. So why would I bother going back to it? (Though, I admit I’m human too. And Allāh S.W.T. said He created humans as weak, that doesn’t change the fact that He also created us as intellectual individuals who have the capability to comprehend, choose and decide for ourselves.) There’s a reason why, to attain success – one must discipline itself. It’s hard, I admit – but keep pushing.


5.) Thinking that Satan was the reason why all of us are going through trials made me forgive the vulnerable people affected and got even more hate to Satan. So the only to indeed beat them was CONFORMING TO ISLAM.


6.) Lastly, also because I believe in Allāh (S.W.T.) existence that it will be shameful of me to turn away from Him when He has blessed all of us the blessings we received to in life. Praise Him until your last breath, be grateful of the little things, ponder over your self, reflect at your flaws… then, discipline.


7.) I’ve seen people who can keep up with prayers, maintain it (like my father), have read Qur’an, etc. that actually inspired me to keep striving. Because again, if they can do it – why can’t I too.


8.) Also, I’ve always wanted to see what would it feel like to complete prayers, be a devotee, etc. Like an ambitious student wanting to achieve perfect grades in class. That no matter how hard it is, you still do it.


9.) Process isn’t going to be easy, but it was worth it. You attain peace, awareness of haraam, etc. It’s like a renewed monk in the temple. Those meditation you receive in yoga class that brings peace… it was that feeling despite the pains and the hurts.


10.) Because there’s Judgment Day awaiting our end. I fear the day I came unprepared, so instead of distracting myself with entertainment – why not focus my life on something important that only it is beneficial for me in the dunya but in the here after?

In conclusion:

  • Listen to lectures.
  • Put effort in Islam on breaktimes.
  • Watch Islamic videos.
  • Ponder over Qur’an translation.
  • Understand why those things we conform in Islam helps us in life, etc.
  • Surround yourself with Islam because only you can do that & not anyone else.
  • Be addicted to it like how you’re addicted to entertainment forms.

…And then, life will be changing in front of your eyes.

I admit, I only became a devotee in Islam because I wanted to change my life and hated being depressed for so long.

I was disappointed, though not surprised, at the trial I faced during my devotion.

Nevertheless, there were more miracles that happened on the course of it too.

I was solely focused on pleasing Allāh (S.W.T.) and feeling guilty of my sins, wishing good to those who hurt me, etc. That I didn’t know… miracles and rewards await in the end.

Moving forward, referring again to my previous post. I mentioned ‘people who discouraged me’ in that one job that has popular reputation for not hiring. One of those people was the person who bullied me too.

But you know what? I didn’t care about that person’s petty bullies. I was just concerned of Allāh (S.W.T.) that despite what this person was doing was being hurtful, I didn’t care and just forgave, be head strong and continued on for Allāh (S.W.T.).

Again, it was hard. There are times I tried standing up, but what’s the point of arguing with someone who won’t believe they’re wrong? It’s just a waste of time.

I just prayed, moved on, and continued.

Again, a hard journey. But worth the miracles that unfolds.

Hope this helps to everyone who wants to make their du’as answered!

Bottomline: Don’t concern yourself with worldly matters and love Allāh (S.W.T.) before anything else because if you circle your life to Him, He gives way for you.”

SubhanAllāh! Alhamdulillāh!
Allāhu Akbar!

🤲🏻🤲🏻🤲🏻

“….Verily, Allaah will not change the (good) condition of a people as long as they do not change their state (of goodness) themselves (by committing sins and by being ungrateful and disobedient to Allaah)…”

Qur’an 13:11

— love, d.

The Irony, So Heavenly: My Faith Journey

(c) Facebook

Assalāmu’alaykum w.w., hello once again. Today in this post, I just want to share this overwhelming irony I had in my life.

You see, as someone who tries hard to be devoted you will not believe that I was not raised by Islamic standards when I was young.

My background was only identify as muslim, but we only did what we we’re told to do but not knowing why we’re doing it. I am not blaming my parents, they weren’t raised to be devoted as well.

For short, we all lived through tribal rules. Cultural lifestyles, under the guise of ‘Islam’. But in reality, cultures or tribal really don’t coincide with Islam in all honesty.

Nevertheless, I have been introduced to Islam since thankfully, we were enrolled to halaqa (Qur’an reading school) during our youth. But that’s not enough, because charity still begins at home.

And what happens when the charity of Islam didn’t exist in it? It contradicts, obviously.

I remembered learning basic Arabic alphabets when I was in first grade, just like how ABC’s were taught to us — because I studied back in Saudi.

Then on third grade, the halaqa was introduced to our life along with my cousins. It was enjoyable reading Al-Qaida and listening to Tawheed tapes, where the proper pronounciation was recorded to be learned.

Then on fifth grade until third year highschool, along with hitting puberty, my mother still luckily enrolled me to halaqa every weekends from different constitution. My mom and I may have fight but with this I REALLY owe it to her big time, I admit it and I sincerely prayed to Allāh (S.W.T.) to bless her more.

It was during this fifth grade that I discovered Islam more and my little devoted side of me sparked. I remember being so strict of not talking to guys my age. Or focus seriously on Madrasah and my studies, or was excited to comply and wear abaya, etc.

All that, was only Islamic stories and halaqa reading 100% of the time. Did I managed to finish the Qur’an? Anyone who reads the Qur’an knows it’s not that easy to finish, especially with the need to practice proper pronounciation and I only attended through weekends.

Fast forward to college, it’s where the real faith discovery begins. I remembered being new in Philippines and was inspired (and somehow felt ashamed) of the very muslim-conforming ladies I see. From the way they dressed very conservatively compared to me who was all-around boyish, to the actions they do. Allāh (S.W.T.) knows that inspired me.

Indeed the best of those are the ones who inspire you to Islam. May Allāh (S.W.T.) bless them more too.

So without further ado, I decided to follow what they did. And in all honesty, it was also the first time I learnt how to wear a hijjab. Yes, you might find it ironic coming from Saudi-born muslim but in that land I grew up with, we wear Khimar or just hanged our veil over heads covering our neck. That was it.

Slowly I started conforming to Islam once again. This time, with all haraam music deleted, to asking Islamic videos in phone, etc. Even my posts in Facebook where Islam-oriented at that time. Plus compared to my highschool self, I was implementing and completing prayer unlike before where I only get to pray during Madrasah (weekends) or Ramadhan taraweehs, etc.

Now this is where trials have befallen at my disposal. Honestly, I’ve been through a lot in life but with faith bagging around you the feeling and overwhelmingness was different.

One of the trials I faced was being the odd one out. Now enter the specific irony I meant by this post, and that’s… the people I am closed with.

Ironically, the muslim friends I have weren’t as religious though I appreciated their respect whenever I asked to be excused if I will to pray and that my non-muslim friends, e.g. Christians (of different sect of beliefs) on the other hand, were the most religious where I relates too when it comes to praising Our Creator.

Again, it was ironic. It was through my few Christian friends where I was inspired to pray more in Islam. Because that faith they have in belief that there IS God, is one thing we all have in common.

Not only that, I thought Christianity was just one. Or that it has different branches like, I’ve only known ‘Catholic’, ‘Baptist’, and born again (which was actually just a general term for rebirthing in Christianity. Like renewed, etc. I’m sorry, my explanations suck. Huhu).

But in my journey through college and especially graduating. I met more sects.

I met a bestfriend who is like my big sister from another mother, because I’m an eldest, and she was a devoted ‘Seventh-Day Adventist’. We get to share our beliefs, and despite the common friends we have (which are my muslim pips), both of us are the only ones who relate in talks of God and faith. Imagine that.

Another one was, I was paired in another ‘Seventh-Day Adventist’ in thesis and she was really a wonderful person. I loved that despite our thesis preparation, we get to talk deeply about faith too. And that, her & even my bff respected me in my beliefs too that at one point, they asked me to pray also, in Islamic way, for whatever situation we are in. I shared them my beliefs, they share mine.

• What I learned from SDA’s is that they implement healthy lifestyle which is why they forbid pork too (which was synonymous to Islam) and that they’re vegans. Literally. They lead vegetarian lifestyle and they had a female prophet who was an American that proposed the vegetarian lifestyle. (correct me if I’m wrong), plus they’re all singers. Their way of worshipping was singing and I tell you, I have never met a greatest bunch of surprisingly talented singers. Even the most loudest voices can awestruck you once they hit the stage. The skirts women wear in implementing decency, forbidding wearing of jewels, forbidding to watch movies (because of the sins it brought), they had a lot of restrictions surprisingly. Plus one thing I noticed about them is that, if the common Christians had Sunday for a mass prayer. They have the Saturday as the rest day, and at night time they assemble for worship. Because they believed God rested on Saturday and they must comply. They would be so dedicated that if there were an important event held on Saturday, true believers from them would not attend. They also don’t celebrate Christmas ’cause they don’t believe Jesus (A.S.) was born on it.

Though just like muslims, not every SDA were devoted and religious. I was just fortunate that my path was weaved to those who taught me how to be more faithful. To those who was closer & believed there was A Creator. SubhanAllāh, the irony I know.

If you’re asking why I didn’t continue my halaqa in college was because I was new to the college place I studied into, I didn’t know much plus no one guided nor invited me. Though we had muslim organization in our school, it was only that.

Another Christian sect devotee I met was from my post-college experience where I first started working, and I was roommates with. Her religion was the first time I hear compared to the common Christianity branches I see. Her religion was ‘Assembly of God’. She was also very religious and devoted, and again yes, we get to share even more about our beliefs. We exchange information and created awareness. It was nice being inside the room where as I implement my five times prayer, she would be owning the whole one-hour before midnight worshipping and praying too.

• What did I learn from AOG’s? I limitedly learn from my roommate that they can pray anytime of the day but to most it was ideal to pray the night before sleeping because probably everyone was asleep. I remembered tucking in my bed, and she would apologize ahead of time of the noise (from her singing) in regards to her praying and I told her I was okay with it. So while I’m asleep, she will be sitting on the dark corner of our room (as she prefers) where one cannot see nor disturb her then she would listen through headphones Christian song and meditate or reflect on the floor. Then later on, she would sing and I will hear her whisper of praises to The Lord. I find it amazing and wholesome, to be honest. I even learned from her more reality and that she said my religion was closer to proper way of prayer (mentioning the sujood or prostate position we muslims do in prayer), it was even said by her pastors. And then there will be times she would implement fasting which I tell you was the most dreadful compared to muslims. If muslims does intermittent fasting, where one can eat only during dinner. Hers was three days (and to most extremes 40 days, as what she told implemented by her pastors) and through that she only drinked water and nothing else. She informed not to tell anyone, if ever asked why she was not eating, that she was fasting because that would ruin the purpose behind it. For the sake of cooperation, we her friends did comply too. In return, she also cooperated when I was implementing Sunnah fasting every Monday and Thursday.

And then another devoted sect of Christianity I met was from the religion ‘Church of Christ’ and this was our common friend together with my roommate. We three were close friends during work, I miss them to be honest. Though this friend wasn’t my roommate so I didn’t learn much about its religion. Though from what I remembered, they don’t sing out loud but rather listen or ponder to worship songs. They have worship days too. This friend of ours was also very devoted. I feel ashamed I forgot much of my friend’s religion. Though this friend mostly share bible stories and such.

And so, that’s the share of what I know. The irony, so heavenly.

اَلۡاَخِلَّاۤءُ يَوۡمَٮِٕذٍۢ بَعۡضُهُمۡ لِبَعۡضٍ عَدُوٌّ اِلَّا الۡمُتَّقِيۡنَ

Friend’s that day will be foes to one another, except the Righteous.

Qur’an 43:67

– love, d.

Benefits of Islamic Practice: Food

(c) Allah.is.the.Most.Merciful Facebook page

Every month of Ramadhan, inevitably people are more onto feasting rather than consuming small amounts. More mothers, especially Asians, have always told us to eat more because we all believe we will gain more nutrients in our different platter of food displayed in front of us. But this is just wrong on some ways, you’re developing greediness and gluttony (big consumption of food).

People finding out you’re fasting, even outside Ramadhan, will automatically think you’re gonna die or you’re poor or worst, unhealthy or sick.

This has probably been stemmed out of women who does diets, since diets are commonly done by women eversince. Well sometimes, some has unhealthy diet (which causes bulimia, anorexia nervosa, obesity, etc.) We can’t judge people, especially girls, if we never know what they’re going through.

Fasting doesn’t really mean not eating (which could cause ulcer. Btw, did you know a human being can last long without food in many days? Like 30? While a human being can last long without water for 3 days.). Anyways, fasting means to not eat entirely where the sun is up, and by sunset time is where we break it. Breakfast, for short. #NoPunIntended

According to one Japanese scientists, our bodies go through lots of regeneration and fixing when one goes through fasting. Our cells renewed, some fats stored in our bodies gets broken down inevitably. The dirt in our bodies gets cleaned out, as well. In its entirety, we are being renewed.

And, as all muslim knows, it is sunnah to fast every Monday and Thursday too by the way. And fasts for the last indicated three days of each month as required. (correct me if I’m wrong)

Besides fasting, apparently one of the food hadith implemented by Nabi Muhammad (S.A.W.) was the 1/3 consumption of food. Meaning, not eating too much of our food, and eating food slowly as well to be digested properly. This was one of the habits Nabi (S.A.W.) would do.

I know it opposes greatly from our love of food, but we were taught in Islam to eat with manners and in decent amounts. Why? I think the wisdom behind this is that, with fasting being achieved in relates to knowing the feeling of how unfortunate ones lived, it also helps us practice not to be too greedy as too much consumption grows like a desire. And as muslims, we shouldn’t be slave of our desires.

Plus, in this growing times, foods have become more and more alarming the way each branded yummy foods are reported to have mixtures from pork origins. E.g. gelatin, pastries, etc. And with all the GMOs, ones that has genetic morphing technology in it, the authenticity of most foods are at risk.

And not to disappoint some of you again but as a muslim, I don’t think I’d even want to consume meat as well since I learned that it is a huge sin to eat meat that’s not slaughtered for the sake of Allāh (S.W.T.). Living in a less muslim populated place is hard, to be honest. We have to watch out, by all means.

So, where do we stand and what food should we eat now? We can still eat the same food. So long as we know or properly check HOW it was made. Honestly, learning all of this I was so close to becoming a vegetarian at will. And only trying to consume foods mentioned in Qur’an, or Nabi (S.A.W.)’s favorite food. Though, it’s hard.

With the excuse of wanting to diet, at least it’s nice to know I was dieting for good health also, for the sake of Allāh (S.W.T.).

So, what are the benefits and wisdoms behind the connection of food to Islam?

1.) Our body regenerates inevitably
2.) We practice not to be greedy
3.) Our body cleanses a lot
4.) We get to feel what unfortunate ones felt
5.) I guess, you could say. Diet?

“He is not a believer whose stomach is filled while his neighbor goes hungry.”

— Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him)

– love, d.