Debt or indebt? (Part 1)

Last week, we organize a talk on ‘graduation: the reality, debt or indebt?”

We manage to put together a few speaker, two representative from the students, both of them have a working experience during their diploma days, before continuing their degree.Another, came from the academia, a lecturer who sold ‘Bihun Sup’ (Noodle soup) during his final year, selling at four different night market nearby his university.One came from the corporate world, working as a Communication Specialist, she paid her own study fee and manage to work in a company who would pay for her to continue her MBA.Another is an electrical engineer, who at the same time sells gold bar in spite of having a stable job.

Each one of them have their own story. Both on debt and who they are indebt to. And all of them points back to their parents, as the one whom they are mostly indebt to.

One interesting point that strike me most, was when the lecturer shared that he would try to spend as much time as possible to be with his parents, taking care of their needs rather than materially.

Of cause others, contribute differently according to what they can afford. But how many of us are able to spend their time with their parents when they get a job and live separately?

Parents no matter how successful you become wish nothing but our happiness. Generally no parents would ever ask back what they have given to their children, even if they have their own income , it does not make anyone less if we share what we earn to our parents and family. As I may quote from Anne Frank:

“No one has ever become poor by giving.”

Sadaqa (Charity/giving)  is not just for those in need, but also for the family closest to us who is in need. So naturally, the first for us to share our wealth is to our family first, before others. Even if our parents have their own income, we should at least give anything that we can afford to give, no matter how small it is, give while you still can.

How do you give? Give…your time…give your ears…listen…and be kind to them….help them in the daily chores if its the only thing you can do..  I thank my aunts for their reminder, that it is important that we quickly do whatever they ask us to do around the house, even as simple as making a cup of coffee.

Be at their service, and be thankful and honoured that you get the opportunity to serve them while the rest of your friends who may have lost their parents, can no longer have the opportunity to serve their parents.

I realize that parents, as they grow old, and even myself, can become sensitive to every word we say. So be careful with how you say it, choose your words, especially the way we treat our parents, because it will reflect how our children will treat us when we are old. Remember that as they grow older, so are you. Therefore, treat your parents the way you want to be treated when you are older, and do it sincerely without any expectation or any benefit gain but your parents happiness and Allah swt (if you are a muslim).

As we climb the ladder, don’t forget those who push us up so that we can reach higher, the one we run to when we are afraid and too scared to step out and reach our dreams, our parents shadow will always follow behind no matter where we go, we take our parents with us. We are after all  part of their gene. I can assure you that no matter how far we have gone, we can always come back home.

Although we can never repay the debt we owe to our parents, make an effort to at least try and return the favour by treating them the way they deserve to be treated.

“Hutang emas boleh dibayar, hutang budi dibawa mati”

(Meaning: Monetary debts can be paid off, but debts of good deeds cannot be repaid. A person brings such debts to his grave.) 

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