Wednesday, February 02, 2011

Respect - in Retrospect

A certain big boss’s father passed away recently. And because she was this big big boss, a lot of people were instructed to go to the mosque. I was one of those. I must admit, that if it was up to me, I wouldnt go. I am just bad at funerals, the smell of kapur barus is too big a reminder of the day my parents left. I cry at funerals (and weddings, and movies too for that matter) But, go I must and so I did.

When I arrived at the mosque, it was crowded. People came by the bus loads. Various agencies and departments sent their staff too. I thought to myself, bertuah datuk, ramai mendoakan ayahnya. But was she, really?

Now this is what I don’t understand.

I don’t understand, why you would go to a funeral and not respect the family or the dead.

Ikhlas or not, if you have to do it anyway, the niat must be corrected. Lebih baik ikhlas, kan? At the mosque, with jenazah and the grieving family, at the very least, do what you were supposed to do i.e to pay respect.

I believe that reading surahs from the Quran can help calm the soul. My knowledge in this is very minimal, admittedly, I imagine the departed soul would be afraid to journey to the unknown, to leave everything familiar to him, and I believe that reading certain surahs from the Quran would help calm the soul and perhaps light his way. The way to pay respect to the jenazah, is to read the Quran and do the solat jenazah.

And for the family he left behind, who now had to adjust to a life without him, you respect them by respecting the occasion.

On that day, in one corner, the big boss was surrounded by her family,. Some were reading the Quran, most were crying. Around her family, were groups of people sitting down and discussing work, handbags, that girl from the department downstairs, that married man who was so itchy, what they were going to have for lunch etc etc. Laughter erupted now and then. Yes, they made attempt to stifle the laughter, but sometimes, I suppose it was too darn funny to not laugh out loud.

The adab to me should be to do the solat. If that is not possible, read the Yaasin. And if Yaasin is not possible, read the Ummul Kitab. If that is not possible, then just sit there quietly. If you must talk about work and meetings and that all important report, must you be loud about it?

When my mother passed away, the same thing happened. While my brother, sister and me took turns reading the Quran beside Mak throughout the night, our guests had a good time chatting the night away. Their laughter was a pain to my ears and I hated them for it. Especially at how deluded they were, thinking that just by being under the same roof with the jenazah, they were doing it good.

To me, it was tidak beradab and I don’t understand why that happened all the time.


Blogger MA said...

This is a good post, Ood. Very well observed and articulated.

When a certain relative of mine passed away in a tragic circumstance, no doubt people were curious to know of incident, how it happened, how the body "looked" like etc. So, I was so pissed off when these busybodies did not mind their manners and commenting out loud so I turned to these people and said it straight to their faces.

"Boleh tak tolong hormat sikit pada tuan rumah, hormat pada jenazah? Kalau nak mengumpat atau mengata, pergi balik kat rumah sendiri boleh tak?"

Terus terdiam semua. Well, they probably start to kutuk me for a change, but hell - do I care? I made my point and that was enough.

5:09 PM  
Blogger OOD said...

the lady sitting behind me, said to her friend,
'look at how hardhearted datuk is, bapak meninggal pon tak menangis!'
AS IF! And so BB and mean.

i should have said to them what you said to the BBs.

When it was Mak's, some makciks wanted to hang around when we bathe the jenazah, you know, menonton like it was a show. My sister shooed them off, jenazah pon tahu aib.

MA, i honestly dont understand how we could be so entah-hapa-hapa in manners.

1:17 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Poor them .. they have the misconception of the funeral. They thought it was for the deceased,

For me, the funeral is for the living to be reminded about their mortality. The most importantly is the morale support to beloved ones whom being left.

Entah lah!! what is the point of going to the funeral if they dont feel the sadness and the difficult time of others.

May be we should crudely pass the remark that they are not welcome.

After going thru the moments, I just love going to funerals. Not for a laughter moment, but to remind about the mortality, especially the sudden death funeral.

Till now, although grievance brings sadness, but it just give a taste similarly to sweet revenge. Life does not belong to us.



7:47 AM  

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