Islam is not only the most misunderstood religion in the country, but in the world as well. No, that statement is not meant to be provocative or degrading to any Muslims out there. I’m merely stating the fact as in every part of the world, there’s Islamophobia; where there is fear for Islam. And rightly so, considering there are a lot of people out there who misuse the religion to spread violence and extremism.
Despite being a multi-religious country where majority of it’s citizens is Muslims, there is still Islamophobia among some non-Muslims in Malaysia. To most, Islam is seen as quite an extreme religion that practically oppressed it’s men and women. A religion that’s full of rules, regulation and restrictions. Conversion to Islam is often seen in a bad light by most non-Muslim traditionalist. It’s often seen as the loss of freedom, and converting is often translated as ‘once you go in, there is no way out’. A sad truth, for I don’t see Islam the same way. I don’t see it as oppressing, nor do I see it as restrictive. Yes, there are rules and commandments that is must be obeyed by the Muslims, but the way I see it, it is logical in many ways. Let’s take the 5 times a day prayer where Muslims are required to pray during certain times of the day; Dawn Prayer (Subuh), Noon prayer (Zohor) Evening Prayer( Asar), Dusk Prayer (Maghrib) and Night Prayer (Isya). The way I see it, these 5 times a day prayer is not restrictive, but instead, in some ways, it is restorative and instill discipline among it’s devotees. Why do I say that?
It’s simple. We are living in a fast paced world, and if we have it our way, we would not stop chasing the worldly things. We won’t stop. Praying is good, spiritually speaking, as we get to reconnects with the maker, and take a break to just reflect for a while. Great way to de-stress, I must say. Apart from that, the Muslims are encouraged to pray together with their families where the men, leaders of the family, mainly fathers, husbands, elder brothers are given responsibility to be imam (a term used for those who leads these prayers) encouraged to lead the rest of the family members in prayers daily. Now, isn’t that a good way for people to bond with their family members? In this fast paced world, we often neglect to bond with our family members. We don’t make bonding session a priority. Instead, we only try to make time for our loved ones during special occasions like public holidays or just during weekend. What’s good in that? One ought to bond with their loved ones daily, and I think it’s great that Islam emphasized bonding in this way.
And then there is the compulsory fasting during the month of Ramadan. Many might see it as torturous. Forceful. But I don’t see it that way. The Muslims are required to fast from sun up to sun down. Scientifically, our digestive system have been working really hard, and throughout the year, accumulating toxins in our bodies. Fasting is a good way to detox, and like praying, it also helps the entire family to connect with each other as each and instill discipline; eating on time, which many neglects to do in this fast-paced world.
I may not know much about Islam, but ancient as it is, it is a religion of logic though fairly misunderstood, even among Muslims themselves. Sad thing to see, but these days, alot of things have been done by the born Muslims and reverted Muslims to show that Islam is religion of peace and moderation.
And speaking of effort that has been made for Muslims and Muslims to understand more about the religion, I spotted something interesting. Being a traveler, I’ve always been a lookout on traveling packages and whatnot, and while I was looking for reasonably priced cruise packages to sign up for in 2015, I spotted this interesting thing: The First Islamic Cruise In The World.
The First Islamic Cruise In The World? Now, that’s a first. Muslim friendly cruise where Halal food is served as an option, I’ve heard before. But a religious cruise with praying and worships on the itinerary? Now, that’s unheard of. So, what’s this cruise is all about? Basically it is a cruise package with Islamic itinerary, aim to educate those who are on board of the ship. The First Islamic Cruise in The World is is brought to you by Intratama TOURS & TRAVEL CONSULTANT (M) SDN BHD or (TCT), a consulting company supporting the event.
The First Islamic Cruise, or in Bahasa Malaysia, Pelayaran Islamic 3.0 with the tagline Syukur, Tenang dan Damai (Gratitude, Serenity and Peace) have quite some thing to offer. It offers a 4 days voyage filled with not only leisurely activities but religious ones as well. It is interesting to note that this voyage encourages deeper understanding about Islam and all of it’s practices. (Types of prayers in Islam apart from the compulsory 5 times a day prayers, Qiblah positioning, religious classes, night worship etc). Classes and lectures will be conducted by renowned religious teachers who will be participating in the cruise as well. They will be giving lectures and religious talks according to schedule that has been arranged by the organizers.
Here’s the participating religious teachers who will be giving talks, etc:
1. Ustaz Badli Shah (Penceramah Bebas)
2.Sheikh Abdelaziz Ghonim (Ahli Majlis Fatwa Al-Azhar Tanta)
3.Dato Hassan Mahmud (Penceramah Bebas)
4.Dato’ Dr. Fadzilah Kamsah (Pakar Motivasi)
5.Imam Muda Miril
The cruise will take the passengers to 3 beautiful destinations on it’s liner, which is Penang-Phuket-Krabi
Beautiful view from Starcruise Libra
Sight in the cabin. Quite spacious and comfortable with great ocean view.
More information on the Islamic Voyage, you can hop over to the site here: https://www.pelayaranislamik.com/index.php?Itemid=101
Voyage date: February 1, 2015 – February 4, 2015
Destination: Penang – Phuket – Krabi
Voyager: Star Cruise Libra
Browsing through the package, what I found most interesting is the pilgrimage program where participants will be brought down from cruise to visit the religious schools and mosques in Phuket and Krabi. Thanksgiving dinner with all the participants and all the panels on board will also be hosted.
In my humble opinion, this cruise would be great for:
- Lucky draw prizes
- Corporate gifts
- Wedding anniversary gift
- Gifts for new Muslims /reverted Muslims
Those who are interested to join the cruise can sign up at:
Or directly contact the organizers at:
No 2.08, Jalan Prima SG 1,
Prima Sri Gombak,
68100 Batu Caves,
Selangor Darul Ehsan
Email : [email protected]
Tel : +603-6185 0010
Fax : +603-61899010
Disclaimer: Bookings and registrations should only be made online at the link provided above. The organizers did not appoint any individuals, agencies, tour companies, dealers or wholesalers to represent Intratama in any transaction related to the Pelayaran Islamik 3.0.