Sabtu, 21 Ogos 2010


Ramadan (Arabic: رمضانRamaḍān, Arabic pronunciation: [rɑmɑdˤɑːn]) (also Ramazan, Ramzan, Ramadhan, Ramdan, Ramadaan) is the ninth month of the Islamic calendar. It is the Islamic month of fasting, in which participating Muslims refrain from eating, drinking and sexual activities from dawn until sunset.[1] Fasting is intended to teach Muslims about patience, humility, and spirituality. It is a time for Muslims to fast for the sake of God (Arabic: الله‎, trans: Allah) and to offer more prayer than usual. During Ramadan, Muslims ask forgiveness for past sins, pray for guidance and help in refraining from everyday evils, and try to purify themselves through self-restraint and good deeds. As compared to the solar calendar, the dates of Ramadan vary, moving backwards about ten days each year depending on the moon. Muslims believe Ramadan to be the month in which the first verses of the Qur'an were revealed to the Prophet Muhammad.[2]

The name "Ramadan" had been the name of the ninth month in Arabian culture long before the arrival of Islam; the word itself derived from an Arabic root rmḍ, as in words like "ramiḍa" or "ar-ramaḍ" denoting intense heat,[3] scorched ground and shortness of rations. In the Qu'ran, God proclaims that "fasting has been written down (as obligatory) upon you, as it was upon those before you". According to the earliest hadith, this refers to the Jewish practice of fasting on Yom Kippur.[4][5]

Khamis, 19 Ogos 2010

Wayang Kulit

Wayang kulit, shadow puppets prevalent in Kelantan, Malaysia, are without a doubt the best known of the Malaysian wayang. Kulit means skin, and refers to the leather construction of the puppets that are carefully chiseled with very fine tools and supported with carefully shaped buffalo horn handles and control rods.

Historically, the performance consisted of shadows cast on a cotton screen and an oil lamp. The handwork involved in making a wayang kulit figure that is suitable for a performance takes several weeks, with the artists working together in groups. They start from master models (typically on paper) which are traced out onto kulit (skin or parchment), providing the figures with an outline and with indications of any holes that will need to be cut (such as for the mouth or eyes). The figures are then smoothed, usually with a glass bottle, and primed. The structure is inspected and eventually the details are worked through. A further smoothing follows before individual painting, which is undertaken by yet another craftsman. Finally, the movable parts (upper arms, lower arms with hands and the associated sticks for manipulation) mounted on the body, which has a central staff by which it is held. A crew makes up to ten figures at a time, typically completing that number over the course of a week.

The painting of less expensive puppets is handled expediently with a spray technique, using templates, and with a different person handling each color. Less expensive puppets, often sold to children during performances, are sometimes made on cardboard instead of leather.

Selasa, 17 Ogos 2010

Public Relations

Public relations involves the cultivation of favorable relations for organizations and products with its key publics through the use of a variety of communications channels and tools. Traditionally, this meant public relations professionals would work with members of the news media to build a favorable image by publicizing the organization or product through stories in print and broadcast media. But today the role of public relations is much broader and includes:
  • building awareness and a favorable image for a company or client within stories and articles found in relevant media outlets
  • closely monitoring numerous media channels for public comment about a company and its products
  • managing crises that threaten company or product image
  • building goodwill among an organization’s target market through community, philanthropic and special programs and events

Isnin, 16 Ogos 2010

Fasting During Ramadhan

During the holy month of Ramadan, Muslims refrain from eating or drinking starting from dawn till dusk. To prepare for the fasting, Muslims wake up before dawn and the fajr prayer to eat a meal (Sahoor). Muslims break their fast at Maghrib (at sunset) prayer time with a meal called Iftar. Muslims may continue to eat and drink after the sun has set until the next morning's fajr prayer call. Ramadan is a time of reflecting , believing and worshiping God. Muslims are expected to put more effort into following the teachings of Islam and to avoid obscene and irreligious sights and sounds. Sexual activities during fasting hours are also forbidden.[9] Purity of both thoughts and actions is important. The fast is intended to be an exacting act of deep personal worship in which Muslims seek a raised awareness of closeness to God.

The act of fasting is said to redirect the heart away from worldly activities, its purpose being to cleanse the inner soul and free it from harm. It also teaches Muslims to practice self-discipline, self-control,[10] sacrifice, and empathy for those who are less fortunate; thus encouraging actions of generosity and charity (Zakat).[11]
Muslims should start observing the fasting ritual upon reaching the age of puberty, so long as they are healthy, sane and have no disabilities or illnesses. The elderly, the chronically ill, and the mentally ill are exempt from fasting, although the first two groups must endeavor to feed the poor in place of their missed fasting. People who are travelling long distances do not have to fast. Also exempt are pregnant women, women during the period of their menstruation, and women nursing their newborns. A difference of opinion exists among Islamic scholars as to whether this last group must make up the days they miss at a later date, or feed poor people as a recompense for days missed.[12] While fasting is not considered compulsory in childhood, many children endeavour to complete as many fasts as possible as practice for later life. Lastly, those traveling (musaafir) are exempt, but must make up the days they miss.[13] More specifically, Twelver Shī‘ah define those who travel more than 40 mi (64 km) in a day as exempt.[11]

The elderly or those who suffer from a disability or disease and have no prospect of getting better in the future can pay the cost of Iftar for a person who cannot afford it, or else they can host such a person in their house and have him eat with them after sunset as a way of repaying for the days they could not fast.[13]
A person who is observing Ramadan might break the fast accidentally, due to having forgotten it. In such an instance, one might spit out the food being eaten or cease the forbidden activity, immediately upon remembering the fast. This can usually happen in the early days of Ramadan because that person might have not yet been acclimated into fasting from dawn until dusk.

Stress Management

Managing stress is all about taking charge: taking charge of your thoughts, your emotions, your schedule, your environment, and the way you deal with problems. The ultimate goal is a balanced life, with time for work, relationships, relaxation, and fun – plus the resilience to hold up under pressure and meet challenges head on.

If your methods of coping with stress aren’t contributing to your greater emotional and physical health, it’s time to find healthier ones. There are many healthy ways to manage and cope with stress, but they all require change. You can either change the situation or change your reaction. When deciding which option to choose, it’s helpful to think of the four As: avoid, alter, adapt, or accept. Since everyone has a unique response to stress, there is no “one size fits all” solution to managing it. No single method works for everyone or in every situation, so experiment with different techniques and strategies. Focus on what makes you feel calm and in control.

Not all stress can be avoided, and it’s not healthy to avoid a situation that needs to be addressed. You may be surprised, however, by the number of stressors in your life that you can eliminate.
  • Learn how to say “no” – Know your limits and stick to them. Whether in your personal or professional life, refuse to accept added responsibilities when you’re close to reaching them. Taking on more than you can handle is a surefire recipe for stress.
  • Avoid people who stress you out – If someone consistently causes stress in your life and you can’t turn the relationship around, limit the amount of time you spend with that person or end the relationship entirely. 
  • Take control of your environment – If the evening news makes you anxious, turn the TV off. If traffic’s got you tense, take a longer but less-traveled route. If going to the market is an unpleasant chore, do your grocery shopping online.
  • Avoid hot-button topics – If you get upset over religion or politics, cross them off your conversation list. If you repeatedly argue about the same subject with the same people, stop bringing it up or excuse yourself when it’s the topic of discussion.
  • Pare down your to-do list – Analyze your schedule, responsibilities, and daily tasks. If you’ve got too much on your plate, distinguish between the “shoulds” and the “musts.” Drop tasks that aren’t truly necessary to the bottom of the list or eliminate them entirely.

Ahad, 15 Ogos 2010

Learning About Protein

We probably know that we need to eat protein, but what is it? Many foods contain protein (say: pro-teen), but the best sources are beef, poultry, fish, eggs, dairy products, nuts, seeds, and legumes like black beans and lentils. Protein builds up, maintains, and replaces the tissues in our body. (Not the tissues that we blow our nose in! We mean the stuff our body's made up of.) Our muscles, our organs, and our immune system are made up mostly of protein.

Our body uses the protein that we eat to make lots of specialized protein molecules that have specific jobs. For instance, our body uses protein to make hemoglobin (say: hee-muh-glow-bin), the part of red blood cells that carries oxygen to every part of our body. Other proteins are used to build cardiac muscle. What's that? Our heart! In fact, whether we're running or just hanging out, protein is doing important work like moving our legs, moving our lungs, and protecting us from disease.

Adab Berpuasa Dan Solat Terawih

Setiap orang yang mengerjakan puasa perlu mematuhi beberapa peraturan dan adab yang boleh menyempurnakan ibadah tersebut. Antara yang terpenting adalah

1. Menjaga lidah daripada berdusta, mengumpat dan mencampuri urusan orang lain yang tiada  kena-mengena dengannya; 

2. Memelihara mata dan telinga daripada melihat dan mendengar perkara yang dilarang oleh syarak dan yang sia-sia; 

3. Mengawal perut daripada merasai makanan dan minuman yang haram atau yang mengandungi unsur syubhat terutama ketika berbuka dan berusaha sedaya mungkin untuk menghasilkan pemakanan yang halal lagi bersih. 

Ulama silam pernah berpesan: “Apabila kamu berpuasa maka perhatikanlah apa yang akan dijadikan makanan berbukamu dan di manakah kamu akan berbuka?” Ia adalah panduan yang terbaik bagi mengawasi diri daripada terjebak dengan unsur-unsur makanan yang tidak halal; 

4. Berusaha menjaga kesemua pancaindera dan anggota tubuh badan daripada mendekati atau melakukan maksiat dan perkara yang sia-sia. Dengan demikian ibadah puasanya akan suci dan sempurna. Terdapat ramai yang memenatkan diri dengan berlapar dan berdahaga, membiarkan diri terdorong kepada perlakuan dosa dan noda, kerana itu puasanya rosak binasa dan keletihannya tidaklah berbaloi sebagaimana maksud sabda Rasulullah s.a.w.: Ramai yang berpuasa tidak mendapat ganjaran daripada puasanya melainkan lapar dan dahaga. (Riwayat an-Nasaei) 

Meninggalkan maksiat menjadi kewajipan kepada seluruh orang Islam sama ada mereka sedang berpuasa atau tidak. Apatah lagi bagi yang berpuasa, ia lebih dituntut dan diwajibkan. Sabda Rasulullah, Puasa itu adalah ‘perisai', sekiranya seseorang daripada kalangan kamu sedang berpuasa janganlah dia bercakap kotor, melakukan keburukan dan berbuat bodoh. Jika ada orang lain yang mengejinya atau cuba memeranginya maka hendaklah dia katakan kepada orang itu: “Saya sedang berpuasa.” (Riwayat Bukhari dan Muslim); 

5. Jangan membanyakkan tidur pada siang harinya dan makan pada malamnya, bahkan bersederhanalah pada kedua-duanya bagi menyelami kejerihan lapar dan dahaga. Dengan demikian sanubarinya terkawal, keinginan nafsunya kurang dan hatinya ceria. Itulah rahsia dan intipati puasa yang perlu dicapai; 

6. Jauhkan diri daripada mengikut dorongan nafsu ketika berbuka dengan beraneka jenis makanan yang lazat-lazat. Sebaik-baiknya adat makannya sama sahaja pada bulan puasa dan bulan-bulan yang lain. Penggemblengan diri dalam mengurangkan tuntutan jasmani dan keinginan perasaan memberikan kesan yang positif terhadap kecerahan hati nurani yang amat dituntut terutama pada bulan Ramadan.
Mereka yang menjadikan keinginan nafsu perut sebagai tunggangan akal ketika berbuka yang menyalahi kebiasaan pada bulan-bulan lain sebenarnya terpedaya dengan pujukan iblis. Rayuannya bertujuan menghilangkan barakah (berkat) ibadah puasa mereka, nikmat limpahan ketenangan daripada Allah s.w.t., kekhusyukan diri ketika bermunajat dan berzikir kepada-Nya. 

Sepatutnya orang yang berpuasa mengurangkan kadar pemakanannya sehingga terserlah kesan puasa itu kepada dirinya. Kekenyangan adalah punca kelalaian, kealpaan, keras hati dan malas untuk taat kepada Allah s.w.t.. 

Sabdanya: Takungan jelek yang dipenuhkan oleh manusia adalah kantong perutnya, memadailah baginya beberapa suapan yang dapat meneguhkan tulang belakangnya. Jika dia enggan maka berikanlah sepertiga (bahagian perutnya) untuk makanan, sepertiga kedua untuk minuman dan sepertiga terakhir bagi pernafasannya. (Riwayat Ahmad dan at-Tarmizi) 

Terdapat ulama yang mengungkapkan kata-kata berikut: “Sekiranya perutmu kenyang anggota-anggota lain akan lapar (akan menurut turutan nafsu) tetapi sekiranya perutmu lapar kesemua anggotamu akan kenyang.”
As-Salaf as-Soleh (mereka yang terdahulu) mengurangkan perkara kebiasaan dan dorongan diri serta memperbanyakkan amal ibadat pada bulan Ramadan secara khusus bahkan itulah adat mereka sepanjang masa; 

7. Tidak menyibukkan diri dengan urusan duniawi pada bulan Ramadan, bahkan mengambil kesempatan bagi beribadat kepada Allah dan mengingati-Nya sebaik mungkin. Justeru, dia tidak melakukan perkara duniawi melainkan sekadar keperluan hariannya atau kepada mereka yang berada di bawah tanggungannya. Demikian yang selayaknya dilakukan pada bulan Ramadhan yang mulia ini sama seperti pada hari Jumaat yang sepatutnya dikhususkan bagi amalan akhirat; 

8. Mempraktikkan amalan sunah seperti segera berbuka apabila masuk waktunya, berbuka dengan buah tamar (kurma) dan jika ia tiada memadailah dengan segelas air serta melambatkan makan sahur.
Nabi s.a.w. berbuka dahulu sebelum Baginda mengerjakan solat Maghrib. Sabda baginda: Umatku sentiasa berada dalam keadaan baik (berkat) selama mana mereka mempercepatkan berbuka (apabila masuk waktunya) dan melambatkan makan sahur. (Riwayat Bukhari dan Muslim); 

9. Menyediakan makanan berbuka kepada orang yang berpuasa sekalipun dengan beberapa biji tamar atau segelas air. Sabda baginda s.a.w.: Sesiapa yang menyediakan makanan berbuka bagi orang yang berpuasa baginya ganjaran seumpama pahala orang yang berpuasa tanpa mengurangi sedikitpun pahalanya (orang yang berpuasa). (Riwayat al-Baihaqi dan Ibnu Khuzaimah) 

10. Memenuhi malamnya dengan amalan sunat seperti solat terawih, witir dan sebagainya.
Adalah dinasihatkan kepada para imam supaya tidak mempercepatkan solat terawihnya seperti mana amalan kebiasaan di masjid dan surau. 

Perbuatan tersebut menjejaskan mutu ibadat solat tersebut kerana meninggalkan ‘wajib-wajib' solat seperti meninggalkan tomakninah semasa rukuk dan sujud, mencacatkan bacaan al-Fatihah sebagaimana sepatutnya lantaran ingin kecepatan dalam mengejar waktu sehingga menyebabkan makmum di belakang tertinggal rukun-rukun penting dalam solatnya. Amalan terawih seperti itu adalah tidak sempurna dan berkurangan pahalanya. 

Oleh itu berwaspadalah terhadap cara demikian dengan kembali mengamalkan ibadah solat seperti waktu-waktu lain, menyempurnakan kiam, bacaan al-Fatihah, rukuk, sujud, khusyuk, hadir hati dan semua peradaban solat dan rukunnya. Bagi makmum pula disyorkan supaya sentiasa bersama imamnya sepanjang solat terawih itu sehinggalah selesai sama ada 20 rakaat ataupun lapan rakaat. Sabda Rasulullah s.a.w., Apabila seseorang menunaikan solat bersama imamnya sehinggalah imam itu (selesai dan) beredar, dikirakan untuknya (makmum) pahala kiam semalaman. (Riwayat an-Nasaei)