June 24th 2011
The Final Episode – Learning To Go Silent Now!
A Levels of Faith for Changes
In our Religion we are given three levels of what one can do in action change and in faith too – of what one must do. There are several Hadith (Religious Narrations) that too confirm on this – and I could give many references and quotations – but I am trying to give this universal message appeal to all people generally –
- Highest Level One –
Change things if it is in your power to do so! It is left to you and your God only if you know about this and do nothing to make the move and change.
- Level Two– Cause change to happen by speaking it out about this or drawing attention to it. Similarly here – It is left to you and your God only if you know about this and do nothing to make the move and change.
- Lowest Level Three – You say it in your heart only that you are against this but are too afraid to speak about it as it may cause harm, danger and damage to you if you go to Level Two. This is considered as the weakest of all the faith one has – but is designed and designated to protect yourself more (or also those near you).
- Level Three can also be there is no added profit nor advantage to speak about it because you have tried several times before to go to Level Two with no results nor advantage – but only you are exposing yourself to harm and damage if you continue – or you look more ridiculous, stupid annoying and losing standing, personality and character if you continue in this practice.
Now those of you who know me well will appreciate and understand that something has happened to want me to write about this – and you are absolutely right too!
If you have few minutes to spare please Read All – otherwise go straight to F. Page 7 – Family, Friends and Relatives are urged to READ ALL
I also note this – people have very strong comments, rigid views, outlooks, perceptions and opinions on many things – but the worst part is that they think they are always right, ethical and correct – and want to impose them on others.
The more unfortunate part is also once they have judged someone or given him a certain colour and shade – they stick to it and do not want to change their views and opinions
because they are ‘riding the high horse’ and speaking down to you! They do not want to give you the benefit of doubt that they may be are mistaken and there is a possibility of change in a person too – as we all human change too from time to time – but not you!
I now understand why some people outside our societies (or even within) hate and despise us so much. I now also understand fully what it means to say ‘opening a can of worms’
There is also no respect and esteem for those older and senior to us – especially in such
affairs. I want to bring the subject out in the open – so we can discuss it rationally, unemotionally, pragmatically and with hopeful signs of reconciliations, remedy, peace, harmony, understandings, live-and-let-live outlooks and scenarios.
Time and time again, History has proved this point. The days when you could scare people away by words and acts of threats, aggression, bullying etc are now over. Even if you go to the basics at home. What my grandfather could do to my father – to what my father could do to me – and what I can do to my son (and hopefully his son too) – have been reduced from time to time. My late father could scold me in front of my wife – his father could beat him my father in front of his wife – but I will think twice before I even contemplate to scold my son – especially in front of his wife.
Times have changed. But opinions and views have not – and people have still not learnt even if the truth is facing them right into their faces!
B The Triple Filter Test.
Have you heard of The Triple Filter Test?
During the Golden Abbasid period, one of the Scholars in Baghdad, the capital of the Muslim Caliphate at that time, was reputed to hold the highest of knowledge and education in esteem. One day an acquaintance met the Great Scholar and said – Do you know what I just heard about your friend? The Scholar replies – Hold on a minute, before telling me anything I would like you to pass a little Test. It is called The Triple Filter Test. The Man asks – Triple Filter Test?
The Scholar continues – That is right. Before you talk to me about my friend it might be a good idea to take a moment and filter what you are going to say. That is why I call it the Triple Filter Test. The first filter is TRUTH. Have you made absolutely sure that what you are about to tell me is true? The Man replies – No, on the contrary! The Scholar – All right, so you do not really know if it is true or not. Now let us try the second Filter Test of GOODNESS. Is what you are about to tell me about my friend something good? The Man – No, on the contrary! The Scholar goes on – So, you want to tell me something bad about him, but you are not certain it is true.
You may still pass the test though, because there is one Filter Test left. That Filter is of
USEFULLNESS. Is what you want to tell me about my friend going to be useful to me? The
Man replies – No, not really. The Scholar – Well, if what you want to tell me is neither true or good nor even useful, why tell me all about it at all? (Good Question I guess!)
In our Holy Quraan it says – Surah 49, Al-Hujarat, Ayah 12 – Quote – O ye who believe! Avoid much suspicions, indeed some suspicions are sins. And spy not, neither backbite one another. Would one of you like to eat the flesh of his dead brother? You would hate it (so hate backbiting) And fear Allah. Verily, Allah is the One Who Accepts repentance, Most Merciful – Unquote.
Like the East Africans like to say – Uutu ni bora kuliko Vitu – Humanity is better than (material) things! We all make mistakes and errors in judgment in life – but forgiveness is divine – as is going for the high road too!
C The Great Alexander Story
The Great King Alexander’s Three Death Wishes.
The Great King Alexander – after conquering many kingdoms – was returning home. On the way, he fell ill and he was bedridden for months. With death drawing close, Alexander
realized how his conquests – his great army – his sharp sword and all his wealth were of no use to him now.
He called all his generals and said – I will depart from the world soon. But I have three wishes. Please fulfill my wishes without fail. With tears flowing down their cheeks, the generals agreed to abide by their King’s last wishes
My First Desire is that – said Alexander – my Physicians alone must carry my coffin. Secondly – when my coffin is being carried to the grave – the path leading to the graveyard should be strewn with gold, silver and precious stones which I have collected in my treasury. My Third and Last wish is that both my hands should be kept dangling out of my coffin.
The people that had gathered there wondered at the King’s strange wishes. But no one dared to question;
Alexander’s favorite general kissed his hand and pressed them to his heart. O King – we assure you that your wishes will all be fulfilled. But tell us why do you make such strange wishes?
At this Alexander took a deep breath and said – I would like the World to know of Three Lessons I have just learnt. I want my Physicians to carry my coffin because people should realize that no Doctor can really cure anybody. They are powerless and cannot save a person from the clutches of Death. So let not people take life for granted.
The Second Wish of strewing gold, silver and other riches on the way to the graveyard is to tell people that that not even a fraction of gold can be taken by me. Let people realize that it is a sheer waste of time to chase wealth.
And about my Third Wish of having my hands dangling out of the coffin – I want people to know that I came empty handed into this world – and empty handed I go out of this world.
Alexander’s last words – Bury my body – do not build any monument for me – keep my hands outside so that the world knows the person who conquered the world had nothing in his hands when dying…… A REAL GREAT ADVICE!
D From My Article – What the Old Man Had Said!
During these difficult times, I thought it is essential, imperative and fundamentally
important to share this one with you today on My Late Father (PBUH). Hopefully all of us and The Younger Generation can learn from it all – Inshallah! Though admittedly I feel still so
empty, vacuum, desolate and despondent that all I had tried to caution, counsel and warn in my books went to waste – and it seemed nobody had read my books at all. Especially the book – A Cry For Help!
I had talked about the increasing expectations – and the lack of tolerances and patience – especially amongst the youngsters – and how some few misbehaving expatriates would cause a great deal of trouble and havoc here…
My Late Father was not that educated – nor did he speak any good English – but my late Father was the most educated, intelligent, smart, wise and pragmatic person that I ever saw in my life!
Whilst there are many problems usual Father to Son Relationships – My Father and I were the Best Friends to say the least. We could communicate and touch base at the highest levels. I try to do the very same with my children too.
This is an extract about My Late Father (Peace Be Upon Him) and from My Book A Cry For
Help! – A.15 – The Oman FM Radio Interview – in June 2007. The Announcer is Mrs. Judith Razaq (JR) and me (MS)
JR – Majid – Who has the greatest influence in your life than anybody else?
MS – I think it is my Father more than anybody else because my Father was straight forward.
He made a lot of friends and he also made a lot of enemies too. Because if somebody had upset him- he never went about a long way to tell him so. My Father sometimes when we
invite guests to our house – he is dead now- so Father – Father please Father – Please put the brakes on! He would say – the food is for you – eat it – I am not going to tell you more than once! You are the guests – the food is for you – please eat it. I tell Father – you do not have to tell them these things! You know he is straight forward. And he has been telling us – that you should not be scared nor to be afraid!
Always tell the truth even if it may cost you – you must do the right correct same thing. But please do not go for lies and deceptions.
My late Father was particularly against taking loans (interests!) and living beyond our means
– or trying to brag and show off in life. He also told us – Do not be deceived you have a rich powerful family member, relative or friend – because nobody is going to help you – except yourself and your Lord only! To Him you go for help and salvation – and nobody else – if you want to be happy and live comfortably in this world! Live within your means – and do not overspent – or be stingy in life either! Also earn your living honestly and sincerely!
And yes – Do not be jealous and envious of others – because God does not like this in men. He is The Giver and The Provider – and He decides whom to give (more or less) or not
at all. When you become jealous and envious – it means in other words that you are challenging The Lord himself!
Do not ask for kindness, mercies and favours from anyone in this life – except the Lord only!
But if somebody came to you for help and assistance – help him – because The Lord favours those who are kind and compassionate to their fellow human beings – and The Lord is particularly angry on those who can help but do not – it is the same Lord who gave you that is denying him – and the Lord is just testing you now!
Do not be obstinate and difficult in life – and listen to the advices of your parents and elders. Respect others and their belongings – just as you are doing yours and would not want others to harm yours either. A good Muslim is the one who wants the same good things for himself that he wants for others to have too! Work hard and diligently for yourself and for your family – and never put all your faith and trust in people – because they can let you down badly and unexpectedly!
On Family he said – PBUH – Family is like your running nose having a very bad smell – but it is still your nose. You cannot cut and remove it – because if you do – you end as The Bigger Loser than anybody else!
My Father ended being just a Grocery Shopkeeper in his life – though he rode the same donkey to school with people who were his peers in becoming great public figures and very
rich and powerful elites – from his home village in Hail Al Ghaaf – Quriyaat – and after his parents had moved from Manah in Nizwa.
If we only had listened – To what the Old Man had said!! A great man lived – and went! Peace Be Upon Him! May Allah God Protect and Preserve us all – Amin…
E From My Article – Goodbye: Our Mama!
Our Late Mother (Mama Bi.) Jokha Hamed Zahor Al Suleimaniya (Peace Be Upon Her) – Left us for her heavenly abode on Monday 4 a.m. October 26th 2009 – From Allah (God) we come – and To Allah (God) we all return … Amin… A great greatness that had come to us with our Mother to us in this world – and now had gone forever – just like the dust and candle into the wind! (Elton John to Lady Diana Song!)….
There is this saying that if you see a grave and see a person being buried, then you will come to your senses of our Temporary existence in this world. And all that we pursue, focus, strive, drive and compete for have ambitions for – and want to have and attain are all superficial and a charade. Only what you leave behind is your good deeds, standing, reputation, behaviour and characteristics only.
There is also this point that sometimes you think you know everything or from your
subconscious that they exist – until someone tells you or reminds you – and in many cases end up as being missed chances and opportunities – and if only becomes the norm and too late a reminder! All the money, power and riches you have you will leave behind, and you will go with that, they put on you before they lower you to the ground and bury you!
Our late Mother above had expired early morning Monday morning 26th of October 2009
after a failed and aborted surgerical operation at Royal Hospital for Dialysis Implant. She was 78 years old – and her kidneys, lungs and also her heart (heartbeats) had failed her. She was too weak for surgery, but the Doctors told us that her lungs had accumulated too much water – and their attempts to drain her had failed.
They had aborted and stopped the operation whilst still in process – and instead they had to
resuscitate her and insert oxygen instead. These things are well best left for the Medical Professionals – after all, they are supposed to be more experts, knowledgeable and experienced. In any case, it is Allah’s Will – and we have to accept that it was her time due to return to Allah SWT.
But having seen that back 10 years ago, my late father went the same way – something has to be done for cases where the patient is aged and weak, and yet the operation becomes necessary as they say. But if one ponders on the critical paramount and fundamental point for a minute that the patient certainly cannot take it – then the Medical Professionals must find alternative ways, means and routes to treat such cases. I do not think surgery for the sake of surgery or an easy way out is an easy option remembering the Medical oath, ethics, professionalism, principles – and Hippocrates Oath I think?
Also if you as Head of The Medical Team have already reached a decision with one member of the family (in this case me as the eldest) you should stick to that agreement – otherwise it causes distrust and divisions in the family – especially when death etc comes in (as it did!)!
Allah Kareem – God Is Great – Praise be to Allah –The Cherisher and Sustainer of The Worlds – Most Gracious – Most Merciful – Master of the Day of Judgment – You do we
worship – And Your aid we seek – Show us the straight (right) way – The way of those on whom You have bestowed Your Grace – Those whose (portion) is not Wrath – And who not go astray (Amin).
In this column and in my books (see www.alsuleimany.com) I have written about my late Mother – from an article titled The Glass Is Bent – and several others. She is covered in all my books too – the Between Us Only series. Also in the introduction part of my book Psychology of Arab Management Thinking.
My late Mother’s funeral received one of the biggest gatherings that I have seen for a very long time. One resident of the place asked one of my friends – who is the great person who has died today (by the number of peoples attending). My friend replied – She was not from that very rich and famous powerful lady group – but certainly she was a Great Lady.
She had built relationships to those high unbelievable levels – especially to neighbours – proved by how many of them were at the funeral – even from Hamriya days 35 years ago – and even our neighbours from Zanzibar Mafia etc. sent in condolences! The friend told me – I lost my Mother again after my own Mother had died two years ago. Now I have No Mother!
One of the old ladies in Hamriya 35 years ago had said – all I wish is to be buried near you – and she was three days later – a premonition and wish that came true. She was also very sick – and had also lost her husband – and a son too!
My late Mother was one of the gentlest and kindest ladies that had ever existed in this world. She always respected and esteemed everybody equally whether you were from the rich or poor, the powerful or not, the famous or not.
She was especially kind and generous to the poor, the needy, the desperate, the sick, the aged and elderly, the small children, those that had given up hope and those that had ‘been lost; and wanted to be ‘found and to be discovered’ and had come to her. She was especially against disrespect, rudeness abruptness and contempt to those in ages older to one –
and especially also to those in leadership roles.
She stood out against unfairness and lack of ethics and principles in life, and unalike many of us, found it in her own subtle ways and means of communicating what was or should have been obvious to that person – or the person talking to her and asking for her views, ideas and
She meant not to hurt anyone’s feelings and outlook, even if she wanted to scream out the opposite in what she was feeling or was in her heart. This especially to her sometimes misbehaving and truant children – as far as I know she never took a stick to beat you (unalike our late Father Peace Be Upon Him) but she would look at you and stare at you – and
you will get the signals and conform yourself – if not the first time – then surely the second time around!
From the time she was married to one of the richest and famous man in that distant island place – to the time we were poor ourselves and in need – she remained unchanged as the same person. There was always extra food in our house, and the those worse off than ourselves at the worst of times were welcomed in to partake whatever was cooked in that house – especially the locals. That is where I had received more calls and messages than even from here – they all cried saying – a great lady has come – and now has gone. We are with you at this particular time – your loss is ours too. That in a summary sums her all up.
It is all so very traumatic, hurtful and painful – but we must all now only accept Allah’s
Will – Amin. There is this hurt and pain that you simply cannot define when our parents leave us, and leave us the children behind. The rest have then to mend and change their ways, behaviours and attitudes to the one left behind who is the parent figure – so those the parents that had departed do not turn in their graves – and for the sake of the family and future generations – even if that person is not rich and powerful. One owes that to the departed especially – and one only can hope and pray!
May Allah Bless our Great Mother for the Greatest of The Heavens and Remove her from the punishment of the grave – Amin – Take Care!
F Why Go Silent Now?
Remember this in A above? Now those of you who know me well will appreciate and understand that something has happened to want me to write about this – and you are absolutely right too!
I got this Email (and SMS) message from several people including from The Company itself.
Talent2, A Global HR solutions company with an office in Muscat, has been asked by Oman Oil Company to assist in a flag ship HR project in Sohar.
• We need HR professionals for 9 days in Sohar
• To play a critical role in a companywide HR assessment project
• Attractive contract rates will be offered
Interested or can you refer HR professionals?
CONTACT: firstname.lastname@example.org +968 9985 8525
We are asking for your help in finding HR professionals to help in this client based HR project.
We need HR professionals for a short period – Saturday 18th and Sunday 26th of June. The project would require HR professionals to assist the panel interviews to assess internal applicants for key positions throughout the newly formed company.
We require HR professionals with:
More than three years professional HR experience in interviewing/recruitment/assessing
Residents of Oman
These HR professionals would play a critical role in interviewing and assessing internal applicants and helping add value to these candidates internal career mobility within the Oman Oil Company subsidiaries in Sohar.
Oman Oil Company has three subsidiary companies in the Port of Sohar which being amalgamated:.
The companies are;
• AROMATICS OMAN
• OMAN POLYPROPYLENE
• OMAN REFINERIES AND PETROCHEMICALS COMPANY
The new name for this company has been named:
• OMAN OIL REFINERIES AND PETROLEUM INDUSTRIES COMPANY
After trying to contact him several times and failing I decided to mail him – including one Omani Lady Maha Sultan. After several days and the project had already started, I received this Email –
On 23 June 2011 09:59, Dermot OMahony <Dermot.OMahony@talentpartnersintl.com>
Apologies for my delayed response.
Presently the HR consulting project which we were asked to find HR professionals for, has been downscaled (After I had applied?).
The management team at our client site have stated that they are managing with the existing six HR consultants which they have resourced.
Originally requiring 21 personnel they have adjusted their timescales to execute the project with these six senior HR consultants.
I really appreciate the time you take into follow-up with me.
Perhaps in the future we will be able to work with each other again.
So I replied to him –
Frankly it is not a question of sour grapes as it may sound but I invite you and Maha to buy my two Arab Management books A Cry For Help! (predicted all came into Oman etc) and
Psychology of Arab Management – www.majidbooks.com – and unless they remove some of the current CEOs and few top Brass all your exercise will be wasted too – but why worry they will pay you anyway to show ‘we did something’ – 🙂
On 23 June 2011 11:01, Majid Al Suleimany <email@example.com> wrote:
Thanks for letting me know! It is okay – I wished I could have helped because I know the problems they have there and there are few Omanis with guts and courage to face them what they need to hear but do not want to hear!
In confidence when I left Sohar Refinery I knew it would end in failure and to be merged up – and if you read my weekly columns in The Oman Daily Observer Strangulation From The Inside you will note what I am saying here.
Please remove my name from your list because I have something already with me which will take at least 15 months to complete at my own pace and speed.
Majid Al Suleimany
I have, therefore decided to go now completely quiet and let things take their natural cause – because my head is bleeding banging it against brick walls and people that do not want to hear anything from me as a person! I have already said so many times before – I told you so! It is like winning many Derby races – one more will add nothing on to what is already red lines crossed and saturation points!
With sincere and genuine apologies – Allah Maakuum – God Be With You All – Amin.
Majid Al Suleimany.