one’s islamic-ity

i just told somebody that i may go out tonight. i said there will be Nuzulul Quran at the mosque inside my embassy. i wasn’t even sure i pronounce the words correctly, so i looked at the sms invitation in my mobile. then of course i did googling. there’s a news article from a website ending with .ae domain. The National newspaper. so at least i got a definition.

reading the article reminds me of my own condition. there’s a source in Abu Dhabi quoted in the article, saying that he is away from his country yet celebrating this in the embassy. however, the difference is obviously i will not come to my embassy here for personal reasons.

something else reminded me of my country. it happened when i and my best friend were roaming in a mall searching for a present for our classmate, who celebrates his birthday today. in a bookshop i told my friend we shoud get a religious book for him (he’s very religious and he lent me a book on Mohammad). there weren’t many books on Islam. i just saw some on sufism and rumi. then my friend was scanning a coffee-table book. on a page, full photo, it was a congregational prayer in a mosque that struck me. i was sure that the mosque is the mosque that is close to my heart, the mosque where my mom took me several times to pray, the mosque which is the largest in Southeast Asia. the last one is what i told my friend. the name escaped me for some time. Istiqlal mosque. Masjid Istiqlal. i was trying to prove this my looking for the caption on the next page, but failed. the caption, if im not mistaken, only says about muslims praying in an islamic country. it neither did mentioned the name of the mosque nor the country.

i felt like crying. its not because the mosque is not famous enough. i can show my friends some pictures about this mosque, hoping that she would still remember and see the similarities with the one in the book. but i think it has something to do with sentimentality. i know the mosque as it is located in my city in Indonesia (maybe my hometown). i know the carpet, the tiles, the pillars, the dome, the caligraphy and all. i admit, it is a very beautiful mosque. i can even remember the smell, the ambience.

going further, maybe my sentimentality is more of my islamic-ity. i’m not religious but i still believe that a mosque is a good place to become closer to god. a good place to pray (a conversation or just listing our wishes). a place of hope and faith, especially when everything else seems to crumble.