This blogspot is a medium to share my thoughts and adventures apart from promoting my books. Below are the books which have been written or authored and published by myself.

"Berpetualang ke Aceh: Mencari Diri dan Erti".

ISBN 983-42031-0-1, Jun 2006

"Berpetualang ke Aceh: Membela Syiar yang Asal"

ISBN 983-42031-1-x, May 2007

"Berpetualang ke Aceh: Sirih Pulang ke Gagang?"

ISBN 978-983-42031-2-2, November 2007

It is interesting to note that while these books were written in Malay it has gained enough attention to merit being part of the collections of the American Library of Congress and National Library of Australia. Look here and here.

While the first three books were published by my own company, the fourth titled "Rumah Azan" was published in April 2009 by a company called Karnadya with the help of the Malaysian national literary body Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka. It features beautiful pictures along with stories behind selected mosques which could be related to the history of Islam and the Malays alongside the formation of the Malaysian nation. Look at the article A collaboration of old collegemates - the book "Rumah Azan".

My fifth book "Ahlul Bait (Family) of Rasulullah SAW and Malay Sultanates", an English translation and adaptation of the Malay book "Ahlul Bait (Keluarga) Rasulullah SAW dan Kesultanan Melayu" authored by Hj Muzaffar Mohamad and Tun Suzana Othman was published early 2010. Look here... My 5th book is out! Ahlul Bait (Family) of Rasulullah SAW and the Malay Sultanates... . For more information check out my Malay blogspot CATATAN SI MERAH SILU.

Like my fourth book "Rumah Azan", the sixth book "Kereta Api Menuju Destinasi" is also a coffee-table book which is published by the company Karnadya with the cooperation of Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka (the main Malay literary body in Malaysia). Coming out January 2011 it features pictures and stories on the adventure travelling by train to all of Peninsular Malaysia along with the interesting places which could be reached this way.

My seventh book "Jejak keluarga Yakin : Satu sketsa sejarah" in turn is a coffee-table book which is written, editted, designed and has pictures taken by me. Coming out of the factory October 2011, this book which combines family history with history of places such as Singapura, Johor, Batu Pahat, Muar and in fact the history of the island of Java and England has been reviewed with me interviewed live in the program Selamat Pagi Malaysia at RTM1. Look at the article Siaran langsung ulasan buku "Jejak keluarga Yakin : Satu sketsa sejarah" dan temu ramah di Selamat Pagi Malaysia. Some selected contents have been featured in Sneak peek "Jejak keluarga Yakin : Satu sketsa sejarah".


The "Berpetualang ke Aceh" series of novels could be obtained in e-book form. Enter http://www.e-sentral.com/, click general novel and go to page 4. You can also type the word "Aceh" at the search box. Or click straight Book 1, Book 2 and Book 3.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

At last, the Brunei Mosque at Danau Tok Uban!

Note: This article is the English translation for the Malay version written at CATATAN SI MERAH SILU during the day on Thursday. For information, this is the last article to be written in this manner... That is, the same article written in three versions, one each for the bi-lingual SENI LAMA MELAYU (MALAY OLDEN ART), the all-Malay CATATAN SI MERAH SILU and this all-English site. From here onward, every blogspot will have its own particular stories. Do take note!

Start by looking at this picture... Jeng jeng jeng!!! Who would have thought in this no man's land in the state of Kelantan lies such a magnificent mosque... Come on, who would have thought, the beautiful mosque inside the area of Rong Chenok (Although it is beside Danau (the lake of) Tok Uban, the immediate locals say Tok Uban is on the other side), province of Pasir Mas was built by the Sultan of Brunei, the individual once said to be the world's richest man! Before his position in the list of wealth was taken over by Bill Gates, the owner of Microsoft...

Look at the inscriptions above (in Jawi)... The Mosque of Brunei Darussalam... At once I remembered the old kingdom of Samudera Darussalam founded by Sultan Malikus Salih in Aceh in the 13th century AD... Is there any connection?

What is sure, in the world history of Islam, the first place to use the name Darussalam is Madinah Darussalam, after it was ruled by Prophet Muhammad Rasulullah SAW... And in the Malay Archipelago, Samudera Darussalam is the first to be known with the name Darussalam which means abode of peace, also because the populace embraced Islam without being forced or having to wage war against. Then only came Pattani Darussalam, also Brunei Darussalam.

So what is the connection between all these? Enough if said, all these Darussalam places involve the presence of Ahlul Bait, the offsprings of the Prophet as competent rulers and administrators also as Islamic missionaries who brought peace wherever they go!

Now think, why must the Sultan of Brunei built a mosque in Rong Chenok, besides a wide expanse of water known as Danau Tok Uban. What is the reason? Why not built it at Kota Bahru, the capital of Kelantan? Why not in Kuala Lumpur or Putrajaya which are far more well-known and glamorous?

For information, not many people know the mosque even existed. The road to get there is also rather difficult meandering through backwater villages, quite far from any main road. To get inside is already a problem... Why go through all the trouble to built such a beautiful mosque in such a place? Even the name Rong Chenok sounds very funny, almost sounding like tenuk, the Malay word for the rather funny-looking animal known as tapir.

Oh... For those who don't know about Danau Tok Uban, do have a look at Now, Danau Tok Uban...

There... The mosque's commemorative plaque written in Jawi... Try to read it yourself.... I can only clarify the Brunei Darussalam Mosque was built in 1992 along with a religious college (the mosque is within a Quran learning college yard) in the name of the late Sultan Omar Ali Saifuddin, father to the present Sultan of Brunei. And it was officiated by the Sultan of Kelantan!

After studying the plaque, there came the urge to put up the "Berpetualang ke Aceh" poster here! In fact it was left up there as long as I was at the mosque until noon the next day. Who on earth would look at this poster when the place is so off the beaten tracks and hardly receive any visitor?

It happens that when I arrived Friday afternoon, a group of school-teachers, their families and students have just arrived for a small dining function at the college-owned rest-houses beside the mosque. You can say, it was the first time most of them stepped foot at Danau Tok Uban although all of them came from Pasir Mas!

At the same time, one can see small children running up and down happily exploring every nook and cranny of the mosque. That's when I realised there's a spiralling staircase to get to the top... What do you expect I did... Like a monkey given a tree to climb do I become... Hehe!

The mosque's tower as could be captured with a cheap digital camera without wide view...

The rest area besides... Seemed so happening with the presence of visitors from Pasir Mas... Otherwise this area rarely has people around except for college students, even then they mostly spend their time elsewhere within the rather wide compounds of the college, a college reputedly fully supported by the Sultan Brunei who also pays the student bills!

The jetty besides the mosque for Danau Tok Uban seen from an angle which could only be taken by 'monkeys' like me. Others who saw where I was then immediately felt queasy... What the heck? Is this guy mad perching up like that at the corner of the mosque??

Praise be to God! It's obvious Danau Tok Uban looks much more beautiful seen from the Brunei Mosque compared to from the other side!

Oh... Forgot to tell. Actually, as soon as I saw the Brunei Mosque from the taxi taken at Pasir Mas, immediately I felt a kind of electrical current rushing through the body. Ah... I had another deja vu... The overall design of the mosque, its surrounding, in fact the small gates also the rest houses besides have already been seen in a dream or a vision long ago... Not sure when but I did saw all of these although physically, that is the first time I got there!

What is the meaning of all this? Ah... Relax... Let there be a bit of suspense... Haha!

The mimbar (small building for giving sermons) with the dome above reminded me of war headgear worn by Muslim warriors of old... Maybe there is a connection here?

As it is, that night, one of the college's religious teacher came with a student to see me. They want to find out who I really was... Lawyer? Magistrate? Or just Kasim Selamat! (Sorry, only those who followed the Malay movies acted by P. Ramlee would understand the pun). Because the visitors (the Pasir Mas folk who rented the rest-houses) were worried with the presence of an unknown figure... Are they scared I might be a thief or a gangster?

Ah... I am used to all these. In fact along this current travel, many thought I was a member of the police Special Branch from Bukit Aman, some even thought I was military intellegence who came in disquise to observe the going-ons around... Even if I say I'm not, some of them had already made their conclusions... Where does exist anyone so brave the way I look with confidence and all venturing deep inside other people's territories alone all by himself unless he is connected to the authorities?

Whatever, the teacher was relieved after examining my identity card and making a little interview. What is interesting is the interview made at another level using spiritual means... It seems the young religious teacher who might not have reach his 40s is not just a nobody. Of course... Would you sent a 'zero' to meet a stranger who could be dangerous to you?

In our conversation, I was frank enough to admit I like to visit the graves and tombs of saints, royalty and related places all to study the Malay Islamic history especially those related to family. I know the teacher was also verifying me spiritually to see if I'm telling the truth or not...

What's interesting is when the teacher admitted, the mosque in fact the whole Danau Tok Uban is situated within an ancient walled city which could still be seen using the spiritual eye... Hmm... Can't talk much about this. Enough if it's said inside Danau Tok Uban, there's plenty of treasures of old, plenty plenty... Said the teacher, there are those who tried to pull out the treasure with no success. What's interesting, he knows that the treasure is meant for the expenses incurred for the end of times war... Hmm... Enough...

Oh, to answer questions by readers especially from Kak Tim, what is the relationship betwen Brunei and Kelantan... La... Thought most already knew... Isn't the Sultan of Kelantan said to have originated from the offsprings of Sayyid Hussein Jamadil Kubra, the head of the group of Wali Tujuh (the seven saints) who came to the Malay lands in 14th century AD? The Sultan of Brunei dsecends from the Sharif of Mekah whose genealogy reaches up to Saidina Hassan, the eldest granchild of Rasulullah SAW! Each came from the blood of the Prophet Muhammad SAW... Allahumasali ala Muhammad wa ala ali Muhammad!

Now think what is the relations between all these... Where did the progenies of the Prophet met in the Malay Archipelago such that the Sultan of Brunei was called to built a mosque here after experiencing a dream... Another story said, there's an old folk in Rong Chenok who had the same dream three days in a row and so sought ways to meet the Sultan of Brunei just to relate the message from the dream.

Whatever, the mosque was built after someone (maybe many?) had a mysterious dream full of questions. What is sure, the existence of the Brunei Mosque in this backwater place raised much curiousity and so became the reason and excuse for some parties to meet and get to know each other here. Fuh... Suddenly the name Tok Kenali came to mind... (The nick-name of the famous late Kelantanese saint rhymes with the Malay word for getting to know, that is mengenali)

OK... Enough ya... I've spent plenty of time writing this... Must go and leave Alor Setar soon... Suddenly came to mind the teacher who interviewed me and his student, both originated from Kulim. As if asking me to go there next (which I did as I'm writing this English translation in Kulim at night!)... God willing, we'll meet again another time. Peace!


Anonymous said...

hope one day i got the chance to go to the mosque. can u tell more about the mystery of the mosque or the place around it.


Radzi Sapiee said...

Insyaallah. Everything in due time. Be patient! Patient is part of faith (sabar itu separuh daripada iman) hehe! :]

Anonymous said...

Allhamdullillah,Finally i came to know the answer that which part of the world it is going to be the rise of majestic Islamic power that will face the evilempire towrds the end of time.

Anonymous said...

saudara,several time I encounter u make use of "gerak hati" in ur writtings, how it actually that we can differenciate the gerak hati....pls eplain to me.

Nik Ismail Azlan said...

This is a story told to me about the mosque. Former Kelantan MB the late Dato Mohd bin Nasir dreamt that he was approached by the late father of the present Sultan of Brunei to to built a mosque. Dato Mohd then told of his dream to the present Sultan of Brunei and soon the mosque was built under his sponsorship and a number of studens were sent to read the Quran there.

Radzi Sapiee said...

Hmm... It's only today that I feel like looking at the backlog of comments and answer where I feel like it... This is also gerak hati... Ada orang panggil intuition. Tapi semua orang ada rasa macam sesuatu dalam hati bagitau itu ini kan jadi camana nak tahu mana boleh pakai ke tak?
Sebenarnya benda ini memakan masa... Dalam kitab Tasawuf ada diceritakan tentang khatir dan warid iaitu lintasan hati lalu disebut cara-cara mengenal manakah bisikin yang bathil mana yang hak sebab syaitan dan jin boleh mengganggu kita selain nafsu sendiri juga berbisik menyuruh buat pelbagai perkara tak baik.
Nak tahu cara memakai gerak hati yang benar ini adalah soal praktikal atau amal yang memakan masa... Antara syarat-syarat awal adalah tidak bercakap bohong dalam apa pun situasi, jujur dalam segalanya dan cakap serupa bikin. Lalu kita pun pergi mengembara dan menempuh pelbagai perkara...
Misalnya masuk hutan... Sampai satu cabang jalan yang kita pun tak pernah sampai... Nak ikut mana ni? Apa kata gerak hati?
Macam saya, saya akan bertafakur sebentar ikut rasa. Setelah yakin tiada gangguan yang boleh mencacatkan gerak hati, saya turut gerak hati yang diyakini benar itu untuk terus berjalan. Oleh kerana saya telah banyak kali mengambil risiko nyawa, di situ saya dapat menilai atau menajamkan gerak hati. Kalau gerak hati saya salah, rasanya sudah lama saya mati kot jadi tak sempatlah bercerita di sini!
Untuk Nik Ismail, terimakasih kerana sudi berkongsi cerita tentang masjd ini. Wassalam! :]

Anonymous said...

Alhamdullilah,finally u have come to d rescue,trma kseh atas ur explaination tentang gerak hati,i,ll try to enhance my spiritual intiuition,are u been busy this days? Any more new stories?

Radzi Sapiee said...

Hmm... The stories keep coming in although sometimes I'm just too tired and want to stop. Having the stories coming it, writing it when there's time, opportunity and flow, that is also part of movement mengikut gerak hati! :]