Jul 01

Day 16. Visiting the Islamic Arts Museum and Orchid Garden.

Assalamu Alaykum

Today has been full of impressions and a lots of things to see at the Islamic Arts museum. The day also included a trip to the Orchid Garden and Berjaya Times Square.

Our day started out with me, Ummu, Selwa, Amal and ZamZam visiting the Islamic Arts Museum where we observed a lot of different artefacts such as Islamic books, scale models of the architecture of different mosques in different parts of the Islamic world, jewelleries and calligraphy gallery among others. The tour was very interesting as it gave me insight to Islamic history and art. It’s difficult to understand the effort and power will of the people that have made and maintained the objects. It gave me more insight into how little we actually know about Islamic history.  The tour was concluded with a trip to the souvenir shop. We thereafter went to the National Mosque nearby the gallery and prayed zuhr.

Ummu and me visited the Orchid garden, which supposedly have over 500 different orchids. Orchids are the most diverse family plant and the beauty cannot be simply described.  As a flower lover and enthusiast the experience could not get any better. After taking some amazing photos we joined the other  and decided to hit the shops at Times Square.

After many hours of walking we felt the hunger arose.  We went to a food court where we were offered a variety of food. My choice of dinner for today was salmon with fried potatoes and salad. Delicious! With more than 2000 boutiques and shops it was hard to not get lost.  When time reached 9 pm I, Amal and Zamzam decided to make our way back home after a long day of walking.

W’salam
Berfin

                                                     

 

Jul 01

Day 15:Highlight of the trip!

Assalamo Aleikom Everybody!

This is Aya writing again and I have the privilege to tell you about our first trip outside Kuala Lumpur, our trip to Melaka.

The whole group, the coordinators, the students and some friends went in the morning by bus on a long yet pleasant trip.

Our special little guest was a little girl called Shasha showing in the picture! :) The cutest kid ever mashAllah! :)

Our Melaka trip was one we will late forget. It was a wonderful day filled with lots of activities, malay culture and of course view the beautiful city that was the heart of Malaysia.

The day before Melaka a few of us students went to the National Museum of Malaysia together with Ka Umu, one of our coordinators. In the beautiful museum they had a whole section to describe the growing of Melaka as a central seaport which unified the east to the west. I was fascinated with the rich culture and inheritance that Malaysia and Melaka has. And I was looking forward to visit the island of Melaka. :)

 

When arriving in Malaca the first thing we did was visit some forts and old buildings fort that was built by the portuguise and also by the hollandaise that left a historical memory. We could see traces of the architecture of the western colonization.

Melaka apparently wasn’t the only tourist attraction. A couple of Chinese tourists found us so interesting so they took lots of photos of us! Have they never seen hijabis before? :)

After that we wanted to see the city from a high point of view so we went up for a rotating sky view. We got to see the whole city of Melaka, which was full of water. They call Stockholm the city of water but Melaka is surely more of a water city…

Down we came and of course we had to ride a boat around the whole city. With the air in our hijabs we enjoyed the peaceful boat ride.

After the boat ride all of us went separate ways to eat and me, Imane and Ka Umu, Siti Sara and of course Shasha went to the Malaysian food court and ate delicious malay food. They told us that if you want to taste real malaysian food, here is where you get it. And it

 

Jun 27

Day 11 – Philosophical discussions and pancakes!

Salam everyone,

My name is Shaimaa and I am a 28 years old PhD student. This is the first time I have joined a course in Islamic studies on an academic level, so I’m really looking forward to these coming weeks!

We have been here for more than a week now, and are slowly starting to settle into the daily routines here in Malaysia. We are getting used to the heat and the special Malaysian food, and the early mornings :) .

For the past few days there has been a smog covering parts of Kuala Lumpur due to forest fires in Indonesia. Today the PSI (pollutant standards index) rose to above 200, which means we should remain indoors as much as possible and have to wear masks whenever we go outside. Hopefully conditions will get better so we won’t miss our trip to Melaka this weekend.

Our first lesson today was a continuation on Islamic Creed where we started talking about God, his names, attributes and actions. Today’s lessons were more interactive than previous when each student had to present at least one of God’s 99 names and explain its meaning. It was quite interesting and informative to learn that some of the shorter suras you usually read in the prayer, and that you thought you understood had a much deeper meaning and could be discussed for hours.  The discussions in class got really lively when we started discussing the topics of free will and destiny. Based on previous year’s diaries, I’m guess this is a popular topic that is quite confusing. Another intense discussion dealt with the fate of people who have never received knowledge about God and Islam.  It is a really great opportunity for us to discuss these topics with teachers who are knowledgeable in their field, since almost all lecturers here have a PhD in their respective fields.

After Islamic Creed, we had Ethics and Tasawwuf class where we learned about the relation between islam, iman and ihsan. These topics are usually not discussed in lectures we usually attend in Sweden as they usually only focus on what is haram and halal, and how we should live as Muslims in Sweden.

After classes, some of us went to Megamall for dinner (pancakes! :) ) with our coordinator Ummu. That’s pretty much all we did today!

 

Wa alikom elsalam

 

Jun 25

Day 10: Our second Monday here in Malaysia

Assalamu wa3aleikum warhamatullahu wabarakatu, my name is Selwa Abdu and I will soon be 19 years old in August the 7th. I just graduated high school which in my point of view is a perfect timing to join sma summer camp 2013. It’s an opportunity for me to get an insight about different aspects about Islam and see if this is something I want to continue study at a university.

Today is our second Monday and it feels surreal that we have been here for almost a week. It feels somehow so much longer but at the same time very short. We have so far finished two courses, one about the sira of the prophet and the other one is Islamic worldview. The two exams went good allhamdulillah but I fear that the next two courses will require more studying. Those two courses we study now are Islamic creed and Islamic ethics and Sufism. We are also studying full time this week which means from 9 in the morning until 6 in the afternoon. Today we had Quran lessons that were two hours long but these lessons are optional but I strongly advise to participate in these sessions. You get divided into groups according to your level and then you get taught based on your level of reading the quran with tajweed. We have had three lessons so far and I can already feel that I have improved.

After school, me and my new found friends, Shaima and Berfin went together with Yasir to megamall to buy badminton rackets and gym shoes we can play with. Our plan is to sometime this week play badminton but it will probably be inside, since the air has become polluted caused by natural forest fires from Indonesia and Singapore. Because of the contamination in the air, we have been told to wear masks at all times when we are outside. Many schools in Malaysia have been closed down but it isn’t that severe here in our area allhamdulilllah. Inshaallah it will rain soon and hopefully this week and the rest of the trip will be as wonderful as it has been so far.

Wa3aleikum Assalam / Selwa Abdu

 

Jun 24

Day 9:First Sunday in Malaysia

Salam alaykoum!

My name is Sara and I’m  a 24 year old student from Borås, Sweden

Our first Sunday in Malaysia started with a few hours more sleep that was highly needed! Our Sunday was not lazy like in Sweden though because we headed straight to mega mall and Chinatown to eat and do some shopping. We came back tired but in a good mood and had some quality time in one of our rooms. Talking, laughing and getting to know each other. It is still difficult to go to bed early for the lectures but I guess it takes a few days to feel that you’re not missing anything fun to do. We also got in to a routine of waking up and praying fajr together which is beautiful. By now we are also traveling around town on our own and being very independent which is positive. Only a week in Malaysia and we are managing ourselves. This month will be a very interesting experience with study, another climate, new people and far away from home.

Wasalam!

 

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