Hari Raya Adilfitri Celebration

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Lye Hin

On the first day of Hari Raya, 3rd November 2005, a small group of eleven Indonesian maids gather at Wan Ching Yuen’s Meeting Room at 10.00am in the morning. Ven. Wei Wu and Ven. Zhen Xin were there to wish the Indonesian maids “Selamat Hari Raya Adilfiltri”.

The maids were given a wide variety of food prepared by Than Hsiang as well as biscuits and other snack food. Ven. Wei Wu presented the maids with “ang-pows” (monetary gifts).

Ven. Wei Wu told the maids that he was reading a book about the teachings of Islam so that he could better understand the teachings of other religions. This way, people of various religious denominations could respect and forgive each other’s religions and thus would not have religious misunderstandings resulting in violence at times.

Ven. Wei Wu told the maids two stories. In the first story, the Venerable told the maids that this story about Jesus was not found in the Bible. One day, Jesus went out with His followers for a walk. The followers went out in front with Jesus following at the back. They came upon a dead dog covered with maggots and emitting foul odours. Jesus’ followers kept far away from the dead dog, covering their nose from the foul odours. When Jesus neared the dog, he went close and called His followers to Him, saying: “How nice and white were the teeth”. Ven. Wei Wu then asked the maids what they taught was the teaching of the story. Two maids replied that one should not look down on others because everyone had their good points (kelebihan). The Venerable raised his finger in acknowledgement of the point given by the maids and praised them.

In the second story, the Venerable told the maids about Arun Gandhi, grandson of Mahatma Gandhi. He mentioned Arun Gandhi visited Malaysia not long ago. Once, when young, Arun accompanied his father to send the car to the garage for repairs. His father requested that they meet at a certain place at 4.00pm. Arun sent the car to the garage and took the opportunity to watch a show at the cinema as they seldom leave their village. The show ended at 5.00pm and Arun rushed to the garage and drove to meet his father. He told his father that he was late because he had to wait for the foreman to finish repairing the car. His father knew however that Arun was lying as his father had called the garage earlier and was informed by the foreman that the car was ready for collection an hour ago.

Arun’s father didn’t scold Arun and said instead that he felt shameful of himself as he had not properly educated Arun and had cause Arun to lose confidence in him, hence Arun felt Arun had to lie to him. Arun’s father declared that this was his fault. From then on, Arun didn’t lie nor cheat anyone again. Ven Wei Wu advised the maids not to punish the child when a mistake is made; instead to look at themselves to see whether they had done their proper part as a parent.

The maids thanked both Ven. Wei Wu and Ven. Zhen Xin for their generosities with “Amituofo”.