Wednesday, 17 October 2018

5 Elements to Have If You Want To Move To Self-Employment

Image result for self employment

People in employment have the relative safety of a salary while people in self-employment have the relative freedom of choice.

Trading a salary for choice (i.e moving from employment to self-employment) requires a clear vision, enough information, community support and the courage to jump.

In some cases, having only one of these is enough to take the exit. However, to sustain for the long term, the other 3 are absolutely necessary.

Personally, I shall add a fifth, which is faith in Allah, which helps me round off the four.

A clear vision is crucial to know the general direction in which you are heading. How do you know you're going to Pulau Pinang if you don't even know what it's called or where it is or what signs to look out for to indicate that you have arrived?

Enough information gives you the ability to simulate experience by learning from others' successess and setbacks. Engage people who can train, mentor, coach and advise you along your path. You will recognise and avoid mistakes they made while making your own unique ones.

Community support is essential in providing the emotional, physical and financial backing to carry you through the ups and downs. Nobody goes it alone. Neither should you.

Having the courage to take risks that feel worthwhile is usually the difference between a seller and an entrepreneur. The ability to trust your gut and jump will get you there first and fast, but it might also get you rock bottom. Choose your jumps and be responsible for them.

Finally, all of your efforts are nothing more than that. YOUR efforts. Having faith in Allah allows you to realise that you are a small cog in a larger universe.

When your courage is gone, and you stand alone, when everything you know is wrong and you've lost your way, Return it all to Him and He will provide from His bounty.

Yes, I don't get stuck in traffic daily anymore. Yes, I get to go for Jumaat with my boy. Yes, I get to have breakfast and lunch and dinner at home. Yes, I choose when and where I want to work. Those are the good days.

But when the bad days come and I'm like a train through a tunnel, and I feel trapped, cold and scared in the dark, that's when the five elements become the torch to guide me back to the light.

Tuesday, 16 October 2018

How to Avoid Being Misunderstood

Behaviour isn't you. But it is how other people measure you.

Different people measure people differently based on their standards.

Therefore, behave according to other people's standards to get what you want from them.


Surround yourself with people of the same standards who understand your values, motivations, speech and actions.


Share your values and motivations with others to better help them understand, and ask others about their values and motivations to better understand them.


Teach others your values and motivations so that they, too, will believe what you believe and want what you want.


Just complain.

Monday, 15 October 2018

Travelers of Thought

The human brain is an inter-dimensional traveler. It can transport its owner into various worlds.

With earphones on, in a deep song.

With head down, in a rich book.

With eyes glazed over, in universal contemplation.

With body burning, in a blazing marathon.

At these times, we are alone in a world only we know.

But sometimes, sometimes, we look across a room, and that look, we recognise, of someone we have met before, but never on this physical plane.

A fellow traveler. Who recognises us too.

In that fleeting unspoken moment, a smile ignites on both faces, and suddenly, we know we are not alone.

And we pass each other by, to continue exploring, never knowing if we'll meet again. But never forgetting we did.

This is dedicated to all the travelers out there. You will know who you are.

Because you will know exactly what I mean.

Sunday, 14 October 2018

Being Productive on Facebook

😀 Facebook is a tool. Use it. Don't let it use you.

😇 Set a time to read on FB. 30 mins in the morning. 30 mins during lunch. 30 mins in the evening. Stick to it. That should sate your hunger but no more.

😙 Begin noticing useless posts that make you feel like $#!+ after reading them (the endless Brangelina commentaries) and unfollow those friends who shared them.

This filtering process will eventually leave you with a positive newsfeed. Eventually. You'll get there.

😍 Shift from being a consumer to being a producer. Ask yourself how you can contribute to your friends' newsfeeds positively.

😉 Share a funny joke, an inspiring quotation, a personal story or practical tips to help in daily life. However, mix it up and have a variety or risk being known as the 'positive quote' person.

 Above all, have a giving attitude and not an expecting attitude and you will spend more time enjoying entertaining your friends and less time complaining about what other people post.

Have a great life, everyone!

Saturday, 13 October 2018

Face It or Learn From It

When a challenge enters your life and you're not ready, you only have two options: Answer the challenge or prepare for the next time it comes around.

The third option isn't really an option at all: "I'm not ready"

"I'm not ready" is an excuse to not take action nor learn from the unpreparedness.

Once upon a time, I wondered why there were so many good-natured people who wanted to help others, and also bad-natured people who didn't.

I realise now that the good-natured ones were those who once had negative thinking and are now passionate about helping more people transform their mindsets to change their lives.

I also figured out that those who didn't want to help change mindsets are those who don't want competition. If everyone thought proactively, they'd lose their advantage.

So, the next time a challenge comes, stay and face it or learn from it. Because walking away is too expensive a mistake to allow happen.

Friday, 12 October 2018

Teacher and Student

A teacher is someone who sees clearer than a student.

When a student sees clearer, it is their turn to become a teacher.

There are days when we see clear, and days when we don't. Sometimes we teach, sometimes we learn.

Knowing when to do which is important.

Saturday, 18 August 2018

Be A Professional Learning Facilitator

The Professional Learning Facilitator program is an immersive 3-day experience that uprades trainers to embrace 21st-century learning facilitation skills.

What is Learning Facilitation?

What Will I Learn?

Who Recognises The PLF System?
The PLF Program has been conducted in Malaysia, Singapore, the United Kingdom and Cambodia and is the preferred learning & development enabler by organisations such as the International Islamic University Malaysia, Bank Muamalat, PETRONAS Chemical, INSTEP, Akademi Audit Negara, Kolej MARA, Zafina Fitness, Manulife Cambodia

Start Your Engines!

What Is It?
START YOUR ENGINES! is a 2-day seminar aimed at brand new Kulliyyah of Engineering students who want to start their academic life with a powerful advantage. It develops their thinking, managing, socialising and performing skills to arrive, survive and thrive in the challenging world of Engineering.

Who Is Involved?
The seminar is conducted by Assoc Prof Dr Maan AlKhatib of Kulliyyah of Engineering and PLF Mohd Nadzrin Wahab of EnSync Learning Sdn Bhd. Both of them have vast experience facilitating learning at the academic and corporate levels, creating impact and results that are deep and measurable.

Why Should I Attend?
Well, it's FREE OF CHARGE, but what you will learn is EXPENSIVE. Both speakers normally charge their clients thousands of ringgit to learn the same. However, as amal jariah, they will be contributing to YOU, the Engineering student, to help you be better prepared for student and later, work life.

What Should I Do Now?
1. Lock in the dates 22-23 September 2018 in your calendar,
2. Set a clear and powerful NIYYAT to become a successful Muslim
3. Invite others to join you, and
4. Come early to get as much learning as possible.

For further information, WhatsApp Nadzrin at +6016 3085 789.

Saturday, 7 April 2018

Credit For All

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While I was conducting a course on problem-solving, I asked my participants why Malaysia became a big player in oil & gas and the expected humorous answer came, "Mahathir!"

I agreed and smiled. I also took the opportunity to spread the credit a little more. Here is what I said to them, as taught to me by my silat teachers:

For every complex effort there are four phases of people involved: Pencetus (the Inspiration), Penyokong (the Supporters), Pendokong (the Executors) and Penyambung (the Sustainers).

Yes, due credit is given to the person who first mooted the idea. But if that's all an idea needed, then all ideas would survive. It needed a Supporter to agree that the idea was worth carrying out and convince Executors to want to make the idea a reality.

After all the concepts, roles, systems and objects had been created, it was now the responsibility of the Sustainers to continue the good work of their forebears.

For everything that succeeds, there were those who made it happen, whether in the beginning or otherwise.

They all deserve credit. Give it fairly.

Friday, 6 April 2018

Voters United

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When we were children, we were friends. Good friends. We were one in the oneness of the universe.

We knew not ideas imposed upon us by others. But we gradually grew apart.

Grew apart in race, in religion, in politics, in behaviour, in opinion.

We knew each other before we knew the leaders and teachers we idolised. We were like brothers, like sisters, yet we allowed people we've barely met to rule our lives and separate us.

We heed their call and call each others' leaders names and get offended on their behalf. And we argue, shout and divorce while they sip coffee together after purporting to represent us.

They leave us divided, broken and in pain and we still say it was your leader's fault, not mine.

They will leave soon, maybe today, maybe tomorrow, maybe in five years. But their hopes and dreams aren't our hopes and dreams.

Because my hope and dream is to be your friend, not their slave.

Live well, and prosper. I love you.


This article is part of a series written in the run-up to the 14th Malaysian General Election on 9 May 2018. The series intends to foster critical thinking, positivity, understanding and fair-mindedness among voters to create a mature space of political discourse.

Thursday, 5 April 2018

Be The Hero

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The biggest lie politicians have sold us is that we are victims, and they are heroes coming to save us.

We participate in the lie by believing them. So don't blame only them. If we really cared about this country, let's do something every single day to change it, to change us.

I look up to my friends and colleagues who use social media to spread education, positivity and power. You know who you are.

I remind myself and others, complaining puts us into the victim hole, giving up responsibility for our salvation to someone else.

No Najib, No Hadi, No Mahathir, no one human being can change Malaysia, except us.

Let's vote, and tell them what we want them to do, every day, every week, every month. Not just every few years.


Let's help them do it. We aren't victims. We are the heroes.

Because if we aren't either of these, we become the villains.


This article is part of a series written in the run-up to the 14th Malaysian General Election on 9 May 2018. The series intends to foster critical thinking, positivity, understanding and fair-mindedness among voters to create a mature space of political discourse.

Wednesday, 4 April 2018

Complain & Act

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A government that wants to keep control, allows their citizens to complain, allows many avenues for complaints.

Complaining keeps the people negative thinking and reduces action, putting burden on action on other people, or the government

It also serves as a release on the pressure cooker. After they complain, they feel better.

Then pressure builds up again, and they are allowed to release it, and the people calm down again.

No more complaints. Only action.


This article is part of a series written in the run-up to the 14th Malaysian General Election on 9 May 2018. The series intends to foster critical thinking, positivity, understanding and fair-mindedness among voters to create a mature space of political discourse.

Tuesday, 3 April 2018


Image result for choose

Different people vote differently.

Some vote based on past performance.
Some vote based on future promises.

Some vote by facts.
Some vote by feel.

Some vote because of charisma.
Some vote because of potential.

Some vote due to similarities.
Some vote despite differences.

Some vote the person.
Some vote the party.

Irrespective of how you choose to vote, it's your right, even if someone else thinks you voted for the wrong reasons. Who's to say their reasons are the right ones?

If someone insists you follow how they vote, it means you have the right to insist they follow how you vote too.

Vote for someone who shares your values.
Vote for someone who shares your race.
Vote for someone who shares your religion.

Vote for someone who you've never met
Vote for someone who is your friend.
Vote for someone who is your enemy.

Vote for someone good looking.
Vote for someone good speaking.
Vote for someone good moving.

Vote for someone you think is stupid so you can control them.
Vote for someone you think is smart so you don't have to teach them.

Vote for someone who will bring change.
Vote for someone who will keep things the same.

Vote. Don't vote. It's your right.

If you do, your voice will be heard. If you don't, your voice is muted.

It's your choice. Choose.


This article is part of a series written in the run-up to the 14th Malaysian General Election on 9 May 2018. The series intends to foster critical thinking, positivity, understanding and fair-mindedness among voters to create a mature space of political discourse.

Monday, 2 April 2018

Independence While Dependent

Image result for independence

When someone becomes Wakil Rakyat, your representative, they listen to your voice.

How is it then, that they also listen to their President, their party and their component parties?

In an ideal world, every Wakil Rakyat is independent from influences other than their constituents. But we don't live there. We live here.

The fact is, as long as they belong to a party, there is a group agenda, whether published or hidden, and there are power plays happening within.

There is the Wakil Rakyat who bravely stands up to their own colleagues and leaders to deliver your hopes and dreams and there is the Wakil Rakyat who only walks the party line.

Keep that in mind when you vote.


This article is part of a series written in the run-up to the 14th Malaysian General Election on 9 May 2018. The series intends to foster critical thinking, positivity, understanding and fair-mindedness among voters to create a mature space of political discourse.

Sunday, 1 April 2018

Play Fair By Playing Smart

Image result for fairness

Nothing's fair in politics. Someone will always have an unfair advantage. No two parties are the same, which means their target markets will also be different, even though they overlap.

One party tracks better with a particular religion, another with a particular position, while others just love following the lead.

Even in martial arts, we're taught that someone who is ill, or just off their game a little bit, can cause them to lose the fight or even their life.

There is no absolute way to predict an outcome. Even where movies are concerned.

I didn't enjoy Black Panther, but the money keeps rolling in. People say to earn big, you have to spend big. Tell that to the producers of Blair Witch Project, Get Out and A Quiet Place.

Conversely, also tell that to the Badang producers.

So, just because one party has more money to spend on more expensive campaigns doesn't mean they will win. Prior elections have proven this.

Have hope.

However, that being said, put in the work, leverage off of free services, tools and efforts, and you can technically make up for all of the money that anyone can throw around.

It is better to be smart than rich.


This article is part of a series written in the run-up to the 14th Malaysian General Election on 9 May 2018. The series intends to foster critical thinking, positivity, understanding and fair-mindedness among voters to create a mature space of political discourse.

Sunday, 18 March 2018

When Coaches Take Cash AND Credit

There is a danger to being a coach. Sure, your client might badmouth you, or you spend so much time on the road you become statistically more liable for an incident. But I'm not talking about these kinds of danger. I speak of the dangers of the heart.

Of course, coaching is a noble profession. A coach is often paid to ask the right questions at the right time in the right way to the client to allow her to gain insights into her own situation. Certainly, this helps her to clarify her own problems and generate solutions.

A good coach will remain highly-conscious throughout the coaching conversation to listen to the structure of what the client is sharing. Then, the coach analyses and selects the next question that will help her think deeper.

When the client reaches a block, most often an emotionally intense "I don't know", the coach clears the path by having her think out of the box and gather more information for the next conversation.

Finally, when the client comes to the powerful conclusion, "I got it!" and starts profusely thanking the coach out of gratitude, the immediate effect is the coach realises the role he played. Well done.

Then, he begins tracking his clients and gets good reports of their improvements in life, performance or business. In the beginning, a sense of pride in the client gives the coach meaning in his work.

Then, one day, a shift happens, and the coach begins to believe that every success of their client is now their own success. The pride OF the client is now pride FOR themselves.

It's a dangerous feeling you won't want to give up. It gives you importance, validation and an inflated sense of self. That's the day a coach becomes worthless; when he becomes nothing more than a person asking questions.

Of course, the coach played a part. True. But so did the parents, loved ones, business partners, bosses and friends of the client. Together, they too, helped her to succeed.

But when a coach thinks that, "She's successful because of me", he takes credit for being nothing more than the key in the ignition of a car that traveled from Perlis to Singapore.

"The car went a long way because I started the engine".

Truthfully, if the client wasn't willing to drive the car, take the risk of driving that far, put in the effort to stay awake throughout the journey and continue deciding to drive instead of stopping or turning back home, there would be no success for a coach to claim at all.

It's alright to claim we sparked an effort. A coach has a challenging job to guide her clients towards clarity. Not everyone has the patience and perseverance to do it, and a coach's role is important to catalyse that change.

But please, if you were the passenger, never claim you were the driver.

Saturday, 17 March 2018

Stop Assuming

North American wild donkey

"He's from that political party? Must be an idiot"
"We're getting a millennial? Arghhh. What an entitled bunch"
"Is that him posing with that guy? He must be corrupt too!"

Human beings have the capacity to analyse and make conclusions. It's an integral part of our survival mechanism. We see rustling in the grass; experience has taught us that a tiger is waiting to pounce. We observe, we process, we decide, we do. Run like the wind.

While driving, we see a ball bounce across the road. Without experience, our minds seek a cause. Colourful ball. More likely to belong to a child. The ball doesn't belong on the road. Therefore, it likely wasn't intended to be there. Therefore, a child might be looking for it. Therefore, a child might be following it to catch up to the ball.

There is absolutely no data to suggest that this is true. All of it is conjecture; assumption. Yet, we slam on the brakes because better safe than sorry. After a few seconds, no child comes running. Instead, a small head peeks out from the side, because he too thought, better safe than sorry. Both of you had made assumptions that saved lives.

Strangely, there's an area where assumptions don't do so well; the social realm. In social interactions, we make assumptions to help us navigate our relationships. "Oh, she's wearing blue today. It's her favourite colour, She must be happy today. I can probably ask her for a favour".

We base our decisions based on our experience with individuals we know well. This is how wives can predict their husbands' behaviour and course correct and its how husbands can hopefully predict when to stay out of their wives' way. That's pretty much workable.

Potential problems arise when we apply our assumptions on people we don't know very well. A manager on her new team members. A teacher on his new students. A trainer on her new participants. A coach on his new client. In fact, among all of these professions, a coach has the most to lose by assuming too much about her client and the most to gain by not assuming.

Whenever you try to coach someone and your client raises a 'familiar' situation, your brain tries to go into "ball and child" mode, to piece together an answer based on your own disparate experiences. The danger is, instead of allowing the client to arrive at her own solution, you begin to ask leading questions that will guide her towards your preconceived solution.

As experience tells us, most often, the client won't take up the solution because she didn't build it. The coach did.

So, how do we solve this within ourselves as a coach? The answer of course is to clarify. When you think you understand something the client is telling you, validate it by asking about it. However, keep the question open-ended enough to ensure that you aren't putting your preconceptions in her brain.

Not "So, you mean you're looking for a way to live comfortably?" to a statement "I want to be rich" as she never used the word 'comfortably'. Instead of probing her definition, you are creating your own, which will interfere with the coaching process.

Better this, "You want to be rich? That's interesting to me. What do you mean by rich?" This way, she's free to define the terminology she just used.

Educate yourself to better frame your questions so that it is easier to get clearer answers. Clearer answers lead to clearer solutions. Clearer solutions are those the client is willing to attempt.

If you can't do even that, then, just stop assuming.

Saturday, 6 January 2018

Learning Facilitators vs Trainers

“You see, trainers, tend to promote a person who is a knowledge downloader. A person who is there to impart knowledge and skills for the immediate gap closure.

“A trainer also implies a kind of programmed approach which is very inflexible and doesn’t sit well with the new generation. See, in PETRONAS, we have evolved from a training focus, that means to say, addressing immediate skills and functionalities and medium of the workforce in the 70s and 80s.

“Then, in the 90s, we said, we don’t have enough development focus. The conversation is not rich enough. The involvement of the line managers, the involvement of the staff itself, in wanting to partake of learning and focusing not only on the immediate learning needs, but also in the future, or the career development is not there.

"So, the conversation needs to move from training to learning, and in the 1990s, we shifted from training to learning. And with that shift, we started calling our trainers: learning facilitators. We dropped the word ‘trainers’. And that was the reason for it.

-Yasir Abdul Rahman, CEO PETRONAS Leadership Centre

“The knowledgeable workforce, they come with a lot of knowledge already. So how do you leverage? Pull out the tacit knowledge that is already there and work it into what you are there to deliver. It’s very difficult to do.

“Not so easy. Alright? It’s much easier to go slide by slide, slide by slide. Very easy. When you have to really work and marry those two, that’s a real challenge.

“And you really got to come ready into the room to really have Murphy’s Law hit you straight in the face and redesign the session and be comfortable with it. If you are a learning facilitator, you’re really focused on application.

“What you have shared, how is this going to be applicable, for the individual, as an individual, as a person, and also as an organization.

-Dr Faridah Marican, President, MAFa

Friday, 5 January 2018

Closer Every Time, Every Day

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Salat is an experiental engagement. If you are not emotionally excited by the prospect of connecting to the Supreme Being, then something is lost.

Khusyuk is about being engrossed in the conversation. Old friends who meet after 20 years over coffee don't notice the other patrons because they are so involved with each other.

You are deeply in conversation with the One who loves you the most, and you're just lagging behind trying to reciprocate that love, but you always take more than you can give.

So, you just give everything you have. And there's nothing left. And you give yourself. And He takes you. In. And allows you to do all the talking. Yet when you're done, you realise He was talking, too. And you feel listened.

And He gives you back. And let's you go about your day. As you did with your kitten after patting him and playing with him and making him happy with your attention.

And you give salam. And you're done. But you shouldn't be the same. You mustn't. You can't. Because you just had a conversation with Him. It must have changed you.

And if it didn't, feel sad. Feel bad. And do it again. And again and again. Until you feel the change. The charge. The choice.

To be better than before.

I never understood it. Today, I felt a little of it. Let's want more.

Thank you, Teacher. You taught me a lot about my relationship to Allah today and my responsibilities. I pray it lasts.

Thursday, 4 January 2018

Survive The Next

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There are people who complain about the state of Malaysia today. I agree with most sentiments. Things don't seem to be getting better.

The thing is, Malaysia has not suffered a tragedy, not yet, not for a long time.

We are overdue for a civil war, an invasion, an occupation, a natural disaster, a zombie epidemic, something, anything that will harden our resolve, thin out our weak links and test our survival skills.

Corruption, toll hikes, inflation; these are comfort complaints, not survival issues, nothing compared to what Gaza, Syria and Antarctica is going through.

Once it happens, it happens big, and only then can we understand the suffering of our fellow human beings.

Now, you're committing suicide over exam grades, deepening debts and lost romance.

It's not the End I'm talking about. No one knows when that will be, especially not some pseudo WhatsApp scholar.

It's the Next. Are you ready to survive the next? Can you survive the battle within yourself to win the war outside?

Are you strong enough?

Wednesday, 3 January 2018

21 Organisations Recognise PLF System

Mohd Rizal Hassan (light blue Baju Melayu) and Yazid Abdul Rani (orange Baju Melayu) celebrating the graduation of the Persatuan Sukan & Kecergasan Zafina Malaysia instructors recently.

3 Jan 2018, KUALA LUMPUR - An international-class program that has been actively upgrading corporate trainers to become learning facilitators in the last seven years has today been formally recognised by 21 organisations as being effective and impactful.

The Take Charge! Learning Facilitator System® (PLF System), founded by Mohd Rizal Hassan is an innovative system that provides educators, trainers and professionals the ability to influence people, generate meaningful change and drive performance.

The PLF System which evolved with Rizal's experience in the learning & development industry, has created more than 1700 fully-capable Professional Learning Facilitators from all walks of life. They are allowed to use the identifier "PLF" before their name in their profiles. They can then proceed to attain their Mastery certification by having their performance audited for quality.

Irrespective of subject matter, the PLF System has enabled trainers, leaders, teachers, lecturers, working professionals, customer service, engineers, medical doctors, housewives and husbands, entrepreneurs, parents and more to deliver their content accurately and memorably.

The PLF System is founded along the principles of Neuro-Linguistic Programming, Hypnosis, Presentation Skills, Body Language Reading, Motivation and Comedic Performance. The locally-founded program has been run in Malaysia, Singapore, the United Kingdom and Cambodia.

The 21 organisations recognising the PLF System include private schools, learning services companies, technology startups and even a fitness association. Persatuan Sukan & Kecergasan Zafina Malaysia, founded by PLF Yazid Abdul Rani, made it compulsory for all their instructors, now called Zafina Learning Facilitators (ZLF) to attain Mastery level in the PLF System before being allowed to represent the association. The association has 500 active instructors and 75 ZLFs.

To register to be a Professional Learning Facilitator, email

Tuesday, 2 January 2018

The Unrideable Beast

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Someone who respects you is someone who will speak to you as a peer. No one, in my opinion, is better at this than my loved one, Rasulullah SAW.

He interacts with adults, children, bonded people, animals and his belongings with kindness and respect.

He never pulls rank, nor reminds people of how much more experience he has (The Awal Makan Garam Effect).

He never uses sarcasm as an emotional play to fufill his own passive-aggresiveness (which he doesn't have to begin with).

He talks straight, without guile, and you love listening to him and are excited to accept what he says.

He doesn't play the tit for tat game.

I pray I learn to do all of this, and I pray you do too. The nafsu is a beast which is unrideable when it's fed with hate. Learn to love, and we will learn his sunnah.

Monday, 1 January 2018

Make Our Teachers Successful

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Our murabbis tolerate our errors, not because they're okay with them but because we are stubborn, and if they bend us anymore, we will break.

In the background, they are profusely asking Allah to save us, because they can't.

Their tolerance is not our license to sin.

If we love them, and their murabbis before them, then make them successful teachers.

Let's become better people, and all of us win.