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Learn the Quran while flying? No thanks.

 | February 17, 2017

Instead of paying through your nose to learn the Quran in mid-flight, why not simply practise kindness and humility?



“Would you like to learn the Quran with an award-winning Ustazah while flying on a private jet for only RM33,000?”

“How about just being in a private jet to learn the Quran for a discounted rate of RM2,000 an hour?”


Well, I could think of hundreds of things I’d prefer doing while zipping through the clouds – and to be honest, learning the Quran isn’t one of them.

You see, after take-off, I like to turn earthward and admire the stunning scene below. I find myself marvelling at the way hills peek through mist-filled valleys and islands seemingly bob on white, calm seas.

When my neck gets stiff from all the gawking, I like to feast my eyes on the exceptionally beautiful sky spread out before me – the slanting sheets of rain, the awesome cloud formations, the brilliant rays of sunlight.

This magnificent scene of the earth and the sky reminds me of God.

When I fly, my problems, tensions and worries float away like those fluffy clouds right outside my window. Suddenly an issue, once deemed monumental, is reduced to a petty hiccough too tiny to bother about. When I fly, I don’t see my physical being in its geographical location but my spiritual being in this cosmic phenomenon called life. I somehow gain a sense of maturity to deal with all my personal issues more confidently.

I am reminded that I am an insignificant speck of dust in God’s universe.

Truth is, I love flying and I believe the joy of flying lies in the fact that I am flying – I mean, actually whizzing through the air. How amazing that God engineered human minds capable of letting us fly through the clouds.

Therefore flying in itself is a godly experience for me.

Leonardo da Vinci once said, “For once you have tasted flight you will walk the earth with your eyes turned skywards, for there you have been and there you will long to return.”

I’d say flying reminds me more of God than any Quranic recital.

Of course, many would say the reason I do not favour reciting the Quran in mid-air is clearly because I do not have RM33,000, or even RM2,000 for that matter, at my disposal. You are partially right – money is not growing in my backyard like it is for some people. But then again, even if I did win a million-ringgit lottery overnight, I believe donating the money to those in need would serve a higher purpose.

And even if I was offered a free session with the ustazah, I doubt I’d take up the offer, for I believe the Quran itself has the ability to elevate a person into a state of “kusyuk” (totally engrossed) without it being in a private jet with gold-plated panels. I could be delivered to a spiritual realm even if I was standing in my bedroom, a madrasah, or a pondok.

I trust any true Islamic scholar would say the same – sadly the award-winning ustazah feels differently. Maybe all those prayer-filled journeys into the clouds has clouded her mind as she now feels compelled to turn her God-given skills and talent into a business model.

The Quran is a book of guidance. It’s a book that teaches kindness and humility. You can either choose to pay to learn about the kindness and humility found in the book, or actually practise humility while spreading kindness all around. The choice is yours.


Fa Abdul is an FMT columnist.

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