Showing posts from January, 2013

How to Pursue Marriage the Halal Way

Before reading this post, I recommend you reading this one first: In the Pursuit of Marriage.

Before we begin...

This is just a guideline of how to pursue marriage the halal way. Do keep in mind that there is a degree of flexibility when it comes to pursuing marriage the halal way.

It is not a rigid, black-and-white thing.

To put it in simple terms, what we need to know is what not to do. That basically means knowing and understanding the concept of gender interaction in Islam. Once we have familiarized ourselves with that concept, then we will know our limits and we will know better not to cross them.

Judging from the emails that I have received over the past year or so, I see that a lot of people (especially people my age) are confused about or unaware of how to pursue marriage in the right way. Therefore, I feel obliged to contribute whatever I can.

I also feel afraid.

I feel afraid to write this post because I don't know if I am the best person to touch upon this topic. Please …

What is Psychology?

Lets begin by addressing two misconceptions that I often hear:

Psychology is not just about crazy people. It is about people.Psychologists are not psychics. We can't read your minds.
People often asked me about the field that I'm currently studying in university - Psychology. Recently I found a comprehensive explanation about what Psychology is. I thought I'd share the explanation here for anyone who is interested.

The information below was taken from the book "Culture & Psychology", 5th edition, by Matsumoto and Juang.

Psychology can be understood from its goals:

Goal #1: To build a body of knowledge about people.

Psychologists seek to understand behaviour when it happens, explain why it happens, and even predict it before it happens. Psychologists achieve this by conducting research and creating theories of behaviour.

Goal #2: To apply the knowledge to intervene in people's lives, to make those lives better.

Psychologists achieve this in many ways: as the…

Four Moments in Prayer

The five daily prayers are the pillars that keep the Islam in a Muslim's heart stand firm. The Muslim is the caretaker of these pillars. It is imperative that the caretaker keeps them in check and takes care of any imperfections, for they are not free from imperfections. They are not suppose to.

It is the caretaker's job to keep them standing strong with constant care and regular check ups. Otherwise the whole structure may collapse, even from a single crack.

I reflected upon my prayer and upon my (lack of) concentration in it. I found myself fixated on four different moments in my prayer. I feel that these four moments are pivotal in my prayer and to pass them by without reflection - albeit for only a second - would be the crack to my pillars.

The Takbeer

The moment when I first say "Allahuakbar". I raise my arms up, palms facing front. I throw everything aside as I bring my arms together and embrace my body. I throw everything aside, except Allah. Except Allah.


In the Pursuit of Marriage

Someone sent me an email asking me a very good question and I think I should share my answer here. I hope it will be beneficial, Insha Allah.

Q: I know that we have to put an effort into pursuing marriage. But what does that mean? What exactly do I have to put my effort in?

A: Regarding effort, I can summarize it in two dimensions:

1. Yourself
2. The potential spouse (husband/wife)

1. Yourself

This part is the most crucial. You have to put in the effort to better yourself (not only applicable in marriage, but in life as well). Allah doesn't ask you to be perfect, but He does ask you to try your best to become as "perfect" as you can be.

Don't become a spouse only after the nikah, start becoming a spouse NOW! Don't become a parent only after the birth of your first child, start becoming a parent NOW! This means that you have to analyze yourself in terms of your potential as a spouse and as a parent, before entering into the marriage.

In order to do this, you have…