Dare To Be Different Camp

Happiness and excitement flowed into my blood when I received a WhatsApp notification informing me that I was accepted to be one of the Dare To Be Different Camp’s participants. Joining a camp was one of my major plans for the first term’s holiday. It was a 3-days-and-2-nights-camp, conducted by the youth team of Hassanal Bolkiah Mosque, who calls themselves ‘Ibadurrahman, which started on the 19th March 2016 and ended on the 21st. It took place at a very mesmerizing and calming place, where nature covered most of it and peace was the exact word to describe it – Tasek Merimbun.

To start with, I thought that the camp would be concentrating more on the religious matters. It turned out that I was mistaken. It didn’t just focus on the religious matters, but it also tackled the matters of physical, mental, motivation and as well as leadership. All I can say is that the activities were quite interesting, fun and of course beneficial for the mind and the soul of each one of the participants. If I were to share the whole experiences and activities we did during the camp, this blog entry might be super lengthy. Long story short, there were outdoor activities, team-building games, religious and motivational talks and not to neglect the team did also share and teach us some of the sunnah of the Prophet Muhammad (Peace Be Upon Him). Afterall the activities were all incredible, and some of it consumed energy if I may add. Even so, I still couldn’t sleep well during the first night. Well, we were all sleeping at the verandah, where we were entertained by natural music, which was a brand new experience to me. Thankfully, my eyes could pull down its curtain during the second night.

Most importantly, the participants and I learnt a lot and lost nothing from the camp. And here are the vital lessons that we could get from the advantageous camp:

Individuality

This is the number one lesson that can be extracted from the camp. As the theme was ‘Dare To Be Different’, it is obvious that the team wanted to show us that we ought to be different and unique in a good way and perhaps in an Islamic way. This includes our way of thinking, solving problems, living and as well as our way of responding to a particular matter. Individuality is what makes us strong and stupendous as one nation and ummah of the Prophet Muhammad (Peace Be Upon Him). With its presence in our souls, we probably can foster flexibility in our lives. Thus, don’t fret if you’re such a rare or strange person. As long as it is within the boundaries of our deen, then that should be fine.

Abu Huraira reported:

The Messenger of Allah (Peace Be Upon Him) said, “Islam began as a something strange, and it will return to being strange, so blessed are the strangers.”

Sahih Muslim 145

Intellectual, Innovative & Creative Mind

Have you read a blog entry of Humble Scents titled The Gap Between Youth And Young? If you haven’t, please do so before proceeding with this.

Youths and intellectual, innovative & creative minds are inseparable. Youths tend to be so innovative and creative and plus intellectual, especially when it comes to brainstorming ideas and creating new things. With this advantage, we, the youths, can drastically help to develop our country or perhaps ourselves, and plus the Muslim youths can bring back the golden age of Islam. Yet the question to ponder upon is, how can we develop such intellectual, innovative and creative minds in each and every one of the youths? The answer to that is through a lot of exposures, tutorials, efforts and practices. We, the youths, need to get exposed with new experiences and things, so that we can learn from it and think about it. That’s how we can grow and bring our intellectual, innovative and creative minds to the next level. Just look at how amazing Ibn Al-Haytham was, that he could invent obscura camera, that had given a huge impact into the photography industry nowadays. Without him, the word ‘selfie’ might not even exist. That is what intellectuality, innovation and creativity can do.

Explore The World

Thankfully, I could go to Tasek Merimbun for the very first time and did explore it through this camp. Moreover, when it says ‘explore the world’, it doesn’t entirely mean that we have to travel around the world. It’s just more than enough to explore our own country. We may explore the places we haven’t gone to and get to gain knowledge about the cultures, people, environments and so on. There’s no such boundaries for an exploration. The sky’s the limit. By exploring, we can brilliantly feed our mind with general knowledge that we can’t get in formal education. This shows us that we need to be sensitive with our surrounding and environment. We should never underestimate the value of little things around us and take it for granted. We shouldn’t just limit ourselves with certain things. The world is created for us to explore and never deny the beauty of Allahu ‘Azza Wajalla‘s creations and masterpieces.

Responsibility, Discipline & Commitment

Put these three in the blender and it surely will be an appetising blended drink. Why? Because they complement each other. The camp had taught me to be more responsible, disciplined and committed with my work. Undoubtedly, a great responsibility comes together with discipline and commitment. We all need to be responsible of our own work and maintain it by being really disciplined and committed with the work given. Afterall, success is awaiting us if these three manners are always present along our journey in life. Some might ask, how to build these three manners in our souls? Here’s an answer especially for Muslim people. Do take care of our solah. Perform it on time. Pay attention to every ayah we recite during our solah and neglect all the worldly matters. In shaa Allah, the Almighty will ease us to practice any other positive and good deeds in our lives, and in this case, practice these three good manners.

‘Ilm

‘Ilm or knowledge is so valuable than any treasures on the face of the Earth. It is so powerful that it can lead someone from darkness to light. We should always welcome new ‘ilm to our minds. Furthermore, when we gain new ‘ilm or knowledge, we preferably need to share it with everyone, as ‘ilm is meant to be shared and practiced, not to just be stored and crammed in our minds. From now on, let’s strive to be a group of knowledgeable and educational people who can inspire and benefit others, and not to forget, that can contribute something to the country and the deen. In addition, seeking knowledge and sharing it are parts of the ‘ibadah that will precisely benefit us in dunya and as well as in akhirah. We all have to make use of the enthusiasm we have as youths to always attempt to gain knowledge. I was so grateful to have surrounded by magnanimous people at the camp. Together we knowledgeably unite to struggle towards the light!

Teamwork & Strategy

When it comes to a team, the word ‘I’ doesn’t exist anymore. It’s all about ‘we’. In order to make sure that a team can go forward and grab the victory awaiting them, they surely need teamwork and strategy in every matter they do. These two things are the key to unlock the door of victory and success. Furthermore, we all need strategies in our lives. We can’t just always go with the flow. Strategy is a must when we are about to start a long and vital journey. Without these two matters, a team will fall flat on one’s face. I still remember when my group lost this one game during the camp, just because we didn’t have a very good strategy. Let’s have Ghuzwah Uhud as an instance. The Muslim people lost it at the very last-minute, due to the reason that some of them didn’t stick to the Prophet Muhammad‘s instruction and strategy. That shows how vital strategy and teamwork are in a team.

Leadership

Do you know that the significance of our existence is to be the khalifah on the face of the Earth? Yes, that’s one of our purposes in life. No matter who we are, we are our own khalifah. We should try to be better day by day in order to be the best khalifah that will benefit the country and as well as the deen of Islam. Added to that, we’re all born to be khalifah. Thus, no matter who we are, we’re holding the responsibility of being khalifah or leader. Admittedly, being a leader isn’t a simple matter. It’s not that easy to be the perfect leader just like the Prophet Muhammad (Peace Be Upon Him). Yet it is an achievable matter if we keep on struggling to better ourselves. Let’s make the Prophet Muhammad (Peace Be Upon Him) as our number one role-model to be the next khalifah of our generation! Just bear in mind that the journey of being the khalifah or the leader might sometimes be bitter, but its fruit is so sweet. This reminds me of how dedicated and diligent my group leader was during the camp. If I were him, surely I couldn’t lead the group at that time.

Perspective & Mindset

The camp had opened my eyes that different human beings have different mindsets and perspectives. We need to admit that truth. We should always remind ourselves that sometimes our opinions, mindsets or perspectives are not always precise, true and right. We have to learn to always hear what others say through their own perspectives, so that we can widen our way of thinking about a particular matter. Sometimes, we have to put aside the egoism in our souls, just to listen to others’ opinions and accept it rationally. By doing this, we will unexpectedly build in the positive mindsets that can help us to be more mature especially in the way of thinking. From now on, we definitely need to always attend any knowledgeable discussions and talks regarding any beneficial matters, so that we are able to bring the positivity into our mindsets. We need to remember that a brilliant perspective and a positive mindset start with knowledge. Moreover, as Muslim people, we have to make sure that our perspectives and mindsets are according to the holy Quran and the Sunnah of the Prophet Muhammd (Peace Be Upon Him).

Ukhuwwah

This is the most sweetest lesson from the camp. On the registration day, it was so awkward. Neither one of the participants had shown their real personality at that time, just yet. Activities after activities, we got to know each other pretty well. We communicated and treated each other like we had known each other for quite a long time. We ate, slept and enjoyed the camp together. Until the last day of the camp, we just realized that it was the end of the camp. That was such an emotional moment. From this, it is obvious that Ukhuwwah or brotherhood is one of the reasons that makes all of us strong. It shows us the meaning of trust and love. We get to positively support and help each other with the bond that we have created. No matter what happens, they will always be there through the ups and downs, through the thick and thin. The bond allows us to love and feel loved and appreciated for the sake of Allahu ‘Azza Wajalla. Hence, this bond will somehow lead all of us to the right pathway for a brighter future in both dunya and akhirah. Let’s always create this type of bond with others so that we can share the love and positive vibes together. Sometimes, we can’t just go alone through our journey, rather we need this type of trusted people to assist us along the journey of struggling towards the light.

As a conclusion, when we’ve chosen to be different, we need to act positively different in our entire lifetime. There’s no point of having goals or aims without any action. Action does speak louder than words. It’s time for us to prove everyone that we are born different and we’ll maintain the individuality to keep on ascending in any scope of matters. No matter how hard the obstacles are, we should be mentally and physically strong and of course patient in facing the challenges. Obstacles and challenges are what make us more mature and better in our unique ways. Indeed, Allah will help us out through our journey if it is dipped with the sabr and ikhlas sauce.

Last but not least, I would like to express my gratitude and appreciation to the ‘Ibadurrahman team, for the opportunity and for organising such a very marvellous event for the youths. It was such an eye-opener. Plus, it was a note-worthy experience and it is indeed one of the highlights of my holiday! It had entirely contributed a lot to my soul and my mind. May the Almighty reward the team with the best of rewards. Plus, I am ultimately glad that my holiday commenced so positively and amazingly. Let me continue to humbly grab more positive vibes!

Until next time,

Shakeeb S.

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