Reflections from 2019: The Sparkling Notes

Notes on the year of 2019 and Hopes for 2020, as Life goes on.

A year has passed. As always, routines and business have made times moving so quickly. Again, 2019 has passed. Many things had happened and things were meant to be tests, but later they became stories to tell and share. In this post, I share a few things related to my experience throughout the year of 2019. The point of view in this post is solely constructed from my point of view; however, my intention is only to share my reflected experience through the year of 2019. Even though I am still relatively young in age compared to the elderly; still, I hope that readers everywhere can get useful and positive things from my experience and insights that I share through this post. 

Notes on Life


Imagining life without family is one thing that might feel a bit peculiar to experience for me. System of this nature shows that every living thing have their family. As times pass by, I learn that to be in a family is the true identity as a human. No single human lives his or her life in solitude. Even though someone can live their life in such a pedestal, being alone is the worst option in life. In spite of having financial freedom or being rich is such a pleasant condition of life in this material and physical world, but being wealthy within living alone fashion without anyone to share is such a difficult condition to bear and face. As a matter of fact, human is not designed to live lonely. In 2019, I learned that family is put in the first number in the list of all important things in life. Arguments, little debates, small anger, slight disappointments might happen in some other days. All these things, as I learned, were not as the bad compared to receiving those from someone or some people that you had to deal with in life socially.  


Living alone or living together with people is actually not options to be selected. It should work both ways. Sometime, it is fine to live alone, especially when we are old in order to have that reflective set of mind to think back all those things that had been done in our life. However, life also teaches that as a human, I am a social creature and so are you, dear readers. I have friends and companies in life. In terms of friends, certain things might happen when we deal with friends. We should realize that not everyone can be our friends. Oh, right, hundreds of types of friends out there! True friends indeed never harm you emotionally or physically. Throughout the year of 2019, I learned that even friends can change into foes. They grow certain hatred within themselves toward us. This hatred can only be felt and observed as times go by. If I have to choose between friends and family, I will choose family. We certainly can make good friends as family, right? Among many friends I have, few of them are considered as my family. Isn’t that beautiful? I am not trying to be idealistic at this point, however. As I had been growing up to this day, I learned that friends are easy to come and they are also easy to go if they do not stick in with you or they find you as someone who is not suitable with their standards. Against all odds, I still believe that everyone can be good friends and everyone has something good within themselves. We just need to figure it out. When I got hurt throughout 2019, I kept collecting all the feelings with me. It got tiring as times passing by, but the minute I tried to ‘forgive’ them and I kept continuing my life, I understood that the hurtful feelings did not matter much, so I managed myself to letting it go. The question for this upcoming year is: Will I keep hurting myself just to see people happy? Will I become a foolish person to sacrifice myself before others? Showing everyone that smiley face while deep inside I got hurt by things that some people did and said to me? Well, as Mariah Carey used to sing, “There is a hero lies in you”, so I thought that there is a hero lies in me, too.   

Notes on Work

2019 was the year when I accomplished achievement as one of the best dedicated lecturers in the college where I worked. Moving from 2018 to 2019, I actually transfer my work purposes to a more sensible goal. I no longer seek for praises or salutation from the leaders whom I committed my service to students and academia. In fact, I never had this kind of intention. The goal in 2019 was to seek for my personal growth at work and that leads me to total fulfillment of my achievement at work. I have learned that being competitive at work is good, but being considerate and humane at work is the sign of the best worker these days. Mischievous attitude and actions derived from corrupted minds may lead to success, but I need success with dignity and blessing, not just a simple but shallow word of ‘winning’. As a lecturer, I accomplished better achievement when I could see my students learn more from me beyond the books or learning materials that I taught in the classroom. I realize that these are not easy. It requires hard works. I hope then 2020 will be the year when I grow wiser as a lecturer for my students and improve myself to be a better reflective thinker for myself and everyone around me. 

Working with ethical standards is a must; however, working the ethics only for certain people while for you the ethics are neglected is indeed the one thing must be avoided. That is indeed an act of total unfairness. Throughout the year of 2015 to 2019, I witnessed that ethics play a major role on reaching outcomes for the professional working. Unfortunately, as a developing country, Indonesia needs to expand its control on how leaders in many different sectors working on making decisions regarding these ethics. One particular employee who might be accused of neglecting the ethics should be treated equally fairly so any punishment given is in line with the principle of justice and fairness as well as law transparency. Otherwise, it would not be ethical for leaders to give punishment to a certain employee without fair and legal jurisdiction. If that is the case, then it is the leaders that might conduct falsehood and mistreatment toward the employees for whatever causes and reasons. 2019 was the year when I understood that power and position would eventually create wrong decisions when these two delightful things of the world are in the hands of the wrong people.  

“Be the Best or Try to be the Best” is what my lecturer taught me to do when I was still a student at Andalas University. Today, I see this statement as a triggering point to achieve a better life. The questions that I have in mind in relation to this statement are: “Best in what aspect?” and “Best compared to Who?” as well as “Best in Where?”  Though I may not have that much expectations at work, I would still have a bigger hope that everyone does their own works and they stop being busy on spying everyone. As long as the job done, that is the matter. I have learned to concentrate to my own works, while certainly in a communal atmosphere like in here, this mental capacity might be seen as being so individualistic. Well, does it sound bad to be individualistic at work? I always believe that if I can do it alone, then I can do it more when I do it together with peers. However, not all peers are worthy of cooperation. Analogically, it looks like this: some peers might consume your kindness while some peers might pretend that you are needed only for matters that they too can do it. As my religion told me, Islam, that being nice and kind to fellow human beings is the sign that Allah SWT loves you. It may sound easy to say; in fact, it is so challenging. Sincerity is dealing with kindness, but kindness being used for gaining salutation from people is never a form of sincerity. Then, what do I expect? The basics: good working atmosphere, nice colleagues, wide opportunity to improve myself as a worker in order to provide the best work performances to the college where I work, and indeed, a very nice payment or salary to feed my child and stay balanced as a human being. Do all these things exist by 2019? The answer is: “I smile” in rhetorical and cultural forms, while saying, “Please don’t ask me further with hurtful questions”      

One thing that I am certain for 2020 is expressed within this phrase: “Best Thing will come and it certainly will come every day” Insya Allah. Biidznillah…

Notes on Social Media

Being creative in terms of writing and reflective thinking is a good way to avoid the lack of exercises to connect the mind and spirits. I had been using WordPress as a site to publish my writings. WordPress is such a powerful for me to let go my voice ever since I was a teenager. Today, the day when I write this post, I am already a man in my thirty five years of age. I find this blog is growing as I grow myself. When I reflected this blog and learned what I did throughout 2019, I figured out that I might not post that much within this 2019 year. Such a hectic life situation, indeed, but I learned how to spare a time and sit to think of what writing I should write to public in this globe through this blog. Sparkling Silent Silhouette, to me, is a brand of my creativity that represents me and all muses I have. Will 2020 sign the year of ever more sparkling thoughts? We will see.  

To be useful for everyone does not always need to be ‘that’ exaggerating. It can be done in simple ways. In 2019, I noticed that sharing good things to people through social media, such as YouTube, is beneficial not only for my personal pleasure to share but also for everyone who might find it useful. I observe that the use of YouTube is interesting. It gets professional and more professional. It has YouTube kids and it helps my son to learn interesting things from watching cartoons. Different from the blog, I named my YouTube channel as Mr. Syayid’s Vlog. I name it similar to my name because I want to keep it real and authentic for anyone in the world. In my blog, I tend to be more reflective and persuasive sometimes, so I might use an interesting phrase to represent my thoughts expressed in writings or words. YouTube channel is a different. It has videos and audios, so I should be the one who shows in the video or my voice. The point is that I would like make my YouTube channel is real and authentic. Monetize? Well, I am not that much into it, but if YouTube can activate it within this year, I would not mind with that. The most important thing is that I should never post videos that are not originally my creation. Perhaps, I might use audios from free-license websites and I will mention them in the video caption for credits. At first, I was a bit shy to appear on YouTube and to be watched by many people. After several years I think about appearing on YouTube, I thought, “Why not? I don’t share useless contents. In fact, I share knowledge and information about places and some important stuff. I also did not intend to promote products, but if they will be beneficial to my explanation later on, why not?” Will 2020 sign the moment where my YouTube channel grows even more? We will wait and see.

Notes on Arts

The works of arts always provide media to relate imagination to the real life. Movies, for me, are the spaces and objects to grow my imagination, while at the same time; movies can be used to construct critical thinking on the notion of cross-culture understanding. I watched movies for the first time at home after my father bought us a TV with Sony brand in 1996. I liked to watch Justice League cartoon movie. They were so special. I liked Aquaman and Flash as well as Thor. Their combination created Superman who later became the character I adored as a child. In 2019, I watched different kind of movies. Recently, I watched ‘The Help’ movie, which was so liberating for me to understand how slavery happened during the 1950s up to 1960s in the United States of America. I watched ‘King Cobra’ movie that displayed the story of a young man who ended up being a gay porn movie. It showed different perspectives to understand how someone came into something bad or good in their life. Another movie I watched was ‘Big Friendly Giant’ movie that shows how a friend can turn into a blessing of life, in spite of barriers that might exist between the two friends. Many other movies that I had watched throughout the year of 2019, so you may subscribe to this blog to keep continuing what I write later on about movies.    

To tell you the truth, I am not a musician, but I always love to listen to music, but not all kind of music. Just as movies, I am quite picky in terms of which music that I like. As always, I like listening to almost all English classic songs, while for modern ones I like Celine Dion, Mariah Carey, Westlife, Boyzone, Beyonce, and many others. Their songs were interesting to hear and the meaning was there, but I would rather be a bit selective to choose which songs I would love to hear all the time. 2019 was the year when I learned that arts did not represent their creator. Arts were more the medium to express messages from the artists and how the message was delivered through a piece of an art.

Notes on Religion and Faith

Islam – Leveling Up the Faith

There are times when I feel up and there are times when I feel down in terms of faith and believing to the Superpower of this universe; nevertheless, my faith to Allah SWT is beyond measureable. I may not be that too serious in faith and I would rather call myself as a Muslim living on diverse world on earth. I may not be represented by another Muslim. What he or she does in life is theirs. My Muslim identity is within myself and all I do in life. I may also not represent another Muslim. I am all what I am. However, of course, it is saddening to hear some people who have painful life just because they were born as Muslims. If I bring it to political issues in the global stage, I would state it by saying one word, “confusing” My faith as a Muslim firstly lies in my responsibility to my family (child, wife, siblings, parents, and extended family).   

In 2017, I got a motorbike accident. In 2019, I began to feel better physically. When I thought about the accident, I learned that the accident happened beyond my ways of thinking. I might have been died after the accident. Allah SWT decided for me to keep living and I really thanked Allah SWT for that.

Notes on the World

Expectations & No Expectations

A common phrase that I heard since I was a teenager was: “Live your life to the fullest.” This phrase was true in a sense of gaining more in life, though at some other times I find a significant fulfilment when I can give to life. I may not be able to give a lot in the form of money, but at least, I can share knowledge to people who need my explanation. In 2019, I learned that to live our life to the fullest means more than just gaining what we could gain in life. It reflects to me that the perfect life is to feel such contentment. When I think of the moment when I got sick, I learned that to have a life is indeed a blessing. Many people out there live their life in such miserable situations and conditions. The complexities in life of the world have shown to me that the way I looked at the world defines my attitude toward this world. Am I going to be part of the problem or part of the solution? Every individual person has life circumstances that might be seen and discovered but such circumstances might not be understandable. When I looked at the globe and listened as well as watched much news on diverse social situations emerging in many different places in the world, I slowly learn that what happen in the world had been designed by God as they should be, but I still have a bigger hope that the world can be a better place when we have efforts to put our ego behind. Eventually, peaceful life everywhere can be obtained successfully forever: making this earth paradise before the actual paradise. Can we?        

I welcome you 2020 and hopefully, the big thing will come soon. The better life condition and, insya Allah, the more peaceful heart are blessed upon me by the Will of Allah SWT. Aamiin…

Film Bertema Agama dan Budaya di Indonesia – Caranya?

Setiap kita, pada dasarnya, menyukai film, apapun jenis genre-nya. Baik itu kartun, animasi, aksi, petualangan, misteri, horor, termasuk film bertema reliji atau agama dan budaya. Namun, pertanyannya, film seperti apa yang telah atau kita tonton itu? Lantas, seberapa jauh film bisa berpengaruh pada hidup kita? Kenapa pula sebuah film wajib dikaji terlebih dahulu oleh pakar kebudayaan dan sastrawan sebelum diedarkan ke khalayak pemirsa Indonesia?

Tulisan saya berikut ini diniatkan untuk menjawab pertanyaan-pertanyaan ini. Saya memang bukan termasuk ke dalam pihak-pihak yang bisa membuat film dan memproduksinya. Walaupun demikian, sebagai salah seorang penikmat, sekaligus pengkritik film, saya tentu sedikit banyak mengerti akan apa yang baik dan bagus mengenai sebuah film. Berangkat dari latar belakang saya sebagai mahasiswa lulusan Sastra Inggris (sekarang, Ilmu Budaya) di Universitas Andalas, dan saat ini (yakni pada saat saya menulis tulisan ini) sedang studi di Amerika, dengan bidang Bahasa Inggris, konsentrasi pada Komposisi: Budaya, Sastra, dan Bahasa, maka setidaknya ada sebuah kewajiban bagi saya untuk berbagi ilmu dengan pembaca blog saya ini tentang Tips Membuat Film Bertema Agama dan Budaya di Indonesia. Melalui tulisan ini, saya akan membahas sedikit banyak kaitan antara Film dengan Budaya, serta antara Film dengan Alam Bawah Sadar pemirsa. Konsep yang akan saya gunakan untuk membahas Topik ini berkaitan dengan Teori Alam Bawah Sadar yang diajukan oleh Sigmund Freud. (Bagi mahasiswa sastra dan psikologi, pasti telah mengenal teori ini). Teori-teori berat sengaja tidak saya jabarkan di sini karena tujuannya bukan untuk memaparkan suatu konsep yang rumit, namun menjelaskan upaya yang benar dan baik perihal membuat film bertema agama dan budaya di Indonesia dengan bahasa yang sesederhana mungkin, mengingat tidak semua pembaca Indonesia yang paham bila saya cas cis cus dengan Bahasa Asing di sini.

Film — Konteks — Pemirsa

Sebuah film, dianggap dan dinilai sebagai sebuah “teks”. Dalam ilmu Kajian Media, teks bisa bersifat semua yang kita lihat dan baca serta dengar dalam kehidupan sehari-hari. Sama halnya dengan Film, di dalam Film, yang kita tonton itu, termuat di dalamnya sebuah Konteks. Konteks berfungsi sebagai bingkai, atau wadah di mana film tersebut diproduksi dan diedarkan serta dikonsumsi sebagai media hiburan sekaligus pembelajaran bagi pemirsa. (Kalau hanya sekedar Hiburan, kan sudah ada Musik dan Lagu, ya toh?) Dengan demikian, keberadaan Pemirsa juga bisa mempengaruhi Konteks di mana Film tersebut akan ditayangkan. (Ingat lho, biaya membuat Film itu tidak sedikit, jadi jangan jadikan kegiatan ini sia-sia). Kaitan antara ketiga unsur ini tidak bisa dipisahkan begitu saja, sebab tanpa keberadaan Pemirsa, Film akan menjadi sia-sia; dan tanpa sebuah Konteks, Film bisa menuai berbagai macam permasalahan karena keberagaman tipe dan macam pemirsa. Di Indonesia, pemirsa kita bermacam-macam. Mulai dari anak-anak hingga dewasa. Kaitanya dengan pembuatan film bertema agama dan budaya, tentu Pemirsa di sini adalah orang-orang yang erat kaitannya dengan agama dan budaya di mana Film tersebut diproduksi. Logikanya, Film yang dibuat sebaiknya sejalan dengan Sifat dan Karakter Pemirsa atau Penonton di Indonesia agar Film tersebut Menarik dan Layak untuk ditonton serta dapat dijadikan Media Pembelajaran bagi generasi muda untuk berfikir akan nasib bangsanya ke depan kelak. Jika kita lihat ke Indonesia, terdapat berbagai macam unsur kebudayaan yang ada, tersebar dari Aceh hingga ke Merauke. Mengenai Agama, terdapat pula Lima Agama di Indonesia: Islam, Nasrani, Katolik, Hindu dan Buddha. Sebagai orang Indonesia, kita sebaiknya sadar akan keberadaan penganut agama ini. Oleh sebab itu, yang perlu kita pertahankan adalah keberlangsungan akan kerukunan umat beragama di negara kita. Sebuah Film yang bertema Agama, wajib untuk tidak menyinggung agama apapun. Sebuah Film yang bertema Budaya, wajib untuk bisa merepresentasikan budaya yang disampaikan dengan seksama, agar tidak ada pihak-pihak di Indonesia yang merasa terintimidasi atau merasa terancam, apalagi jika Film tersebut berkaitan dengan komunitas marjinal yang ada di negara kita.

Penulis — Sutradara — Produser

Peran penulis, sutradara, dan produser sangat erat dan penting fungsinya bagi proses pembuatan sebuah film. Mengenai penulis, siapa pun bisa menjadi penulis. Pertanyaannya, penulis yang bagaimana? Pertanyaan yang sama juga jatuh kepada sutradara dan produser. Sebuah pertanyaan kritis yang timbul dari benak saya adalah: “Apa prinsip, visi, dan misi serta niat sutradara dan produser sebelum memprakarsai sebuah pembuatan film? Apa latar belakang mereka secara pribadi? Film-film apa saja yang telah mereka produksi? Apa komentar dan kritik dari pemirsa mengenai Film yang mereka produksi?” Saya mengamati bahwa pada dasarnya, pemirsa Indonesia, tidak mencermati atau mempertanyakan siapa individu yang termasuk ke dalam tiga unsur ini. Penulis yang sejati, ketika karyanya di-film-kan, pasti akan sangat terharu, namun, dia tentu akan wanti-wanti, apakah karyanya bisa “diwakili” dan “terwakili” di layar lebar atau tidak. Alasannya, banyak juga kenyataan di mana Pemirsa kecewa menonton Film Layar Lebar yang diangkat dari Novel karena banyaknya bagian cerita yang dipotong. Alhasil, itu akan merugikan kandungan makna Novel si Penulis. Sutradara, pada dasarnya, adalah individu yang memotori dan meracik sebuah film menjadi menarik dan berdaya guna. Baik atau tidaknya penilaian Pemirsa mengenai Film-nya, itu termasuk ke dalam tanggung jawab Sutradara. (Kenapa? Baca terus, ya?) Sementara Produser, atau mungkin bisa juga disebut Sponsor, bertanggungjawab perihal Pembiayaan Film, meski Produser juga tertarik kepada Profit atau Untung dari Film. Di titik Produser ini, perlu juga dilihat, ingin mendapat untungnya tersebut berupa apa? Apakah dengan cara menghalalkan segala upaya untuk meraih untung? Menghindari sisi kemanusiaan?

Film Asing — Lebih Laku — Banyak Ditonton (Film Indonesia?)

Kita sadar kalau Film kita tidak semuanya yang laku di pasaran per-film-an internasional. Ada yang bagus, tapi juga tidak sedikit yang kurang bagus. Sementara, kita sering tergiur dengan lakunya film luar, bahkan terkadang, bisa mengalahkan posisi film tanah air kita. Kita juga ingin film kita mengalami hal yang sama. Lantas, kenapa bisa laku? Wajar saja laku, karena faktor bahasa di film tersebut dan faktor budaya pemirsa internasional serta selera pemirsa internasional.

Mengenai bahasa, tidak selalu film yang laku di dunia internasional itu mutlak menggunakan bahasa Inggris, namun, dengan menggunakan bahasa Inggris, setidaknya cakupan jumlah pemirsanya menjadi lebih luas. Faktor budaya juga mempengaruhi bagaimana sebuah film dinilai di mata dunia internasional. Karena budaya Indonesia yang cukup “kontras” dengan budaya “luar”, wajar film Indonesia sedikit terasa berbeda nuansanya bagi pemirsa internasional. Ujung-ujungnya ini berkaitan dengan selera pemirsa internasional. Tidak mutlak pemirsa internasional suka film yang berbau kekerasan atau animasi yang penuh intrik serta dibarengi dengan kualitas video dan audio yang bagus. Namun, unsur seperti ini sudah sangat menunjang untuk menjadi sebuah film yang bagus. Sebuah film drama yang bertema keluarga saja bisa laku keras di pasaran karena menginspirasi bagi mereka. Kenapa? Karena film yang laku keras tersebut memberikan inspirasi kepada pemirsa sesuai konteks kebiasaan dan “selera” hidup di mana mereka berada. Kalau kita menonton film Hollywood, misalnya, konteks alur ceritanya dibangun dari sudut pandang orang Amerika. Sementara, film Bollywood, juga mewakili bagaimana orang India mewakili berbagai macam cerita yang diinspirasi dari kultur mereka sehari-hari. Bagaimana dengan kita? Apakah film kita sudah mewakili keberagaman budaya kita? Apakah film kita masih berorientasi profit? Kaitannya dengan Agama dan Budaya, film-film Hollywood dan Bollywood juga memiliki tema Agama dan Budaya, tapi tentu sesuai konteks Amerika dan India. Namun, apakah kita melulu meniru bagaimana orang lain membuat film? Lantas, apa yang menjadi ciri khas film kita? Nah, pada titik ini, kita kaitkan dengan selera pemirsa Indonesia secara garis besar. Saya masih ingat ketika rekan kuliah saya dulu bilang begini, “Hollywood itu identik dengan pistol, sex, dan teknologi. Bollywood itu identik dengan nyanyi, tari, dan aneka masalah sosial di India. Kalau Jepang, ada Samurai. Kalau China, dengan Ninja” Sementara, Film kita? Banyak ide yang bisa dijadikan film. Cuma, dari mana ide tersebut? Dan, apa ide tersebut baik atau jahat? Itu dulu, baru pikirkan soal profit. Kalau Film menarik, ada unsur pembelajaran di dalamnya, dan unsur audio-visualnya mendukung, siapa sih yang tidak akan menonton? (Lho, kok bisa gitu? Kan harus nonton dulu?) Kan ada sinopsis, dear one… Kan bisa baca sinopsis itu.

Film — Novel

Banyak film-film besar yang diangkat dari Novel. Tidak hanya di Indonesia, tapi juga di dunia. Anda pasti sudah tahu akan hal ini. Pertanyaannya, apakah mutlak novel yang laku keras bisa laku pula setelah di-film-kan? Belum tentu. Apakah novel yang biasa-biasa saja bisa membuat filmnya laku keras? Bisa jadi. Seperti argumen saya di atas, sebuah Film, laku atau tidak, bergantung kepada Konteks dan Pemirsa. Kalau Film nya sudah menawarkan kontroversi bagi Pemirsa, saya khawatir akan keberadaan Sutradara dan Produser. Mereka bisa dipertanyakan oleh Pemirsa, dan itu tentunya adalah hak Pemirsa. Novel, pada dasarnya, sama dengan Film, cuma perbedaannya terletak pada cara kita “mengonsumsinya”. Untuk Novel, kita seringkali membangun imajinasi dari susunan kata yang ditulis oleh penulis novel tersebut. Sementara Film, kita hanya duduk, diam, dan menerima apa yang disuguhkan secara visual. Nah, pada bagian ini, manakah yang lebih berbahaya? Novel atau Film? Jawabnya, Film. Mengapa? Jika kita analogikan dengan Makanan, Film sama dengan Makanan Cepat Saji. Tersedia dengan cepat kepada kita. Kita tidak punya andil di dalam “menyaringnya” kecuali setelah “dikonsumsi” terlebih dahulu. Sementara Novel, bagus atau tidaknya jatuh kepada pembaca dalam skala individu, bergantung kepada sejauh mana Imajinasi si Pembaca di dalam memahami karya yang dibacanya. Sementara Film, sekali ditayangkan di layar lebar, ratusan Pemirsa akan mengonsumsinya ke dalam alam bawah sadar mereka. Apa yang digunakan oleh akor dan aktris di film tersebut, akan secara tidak sadar ditiru oleh Pemirsa, seperti Anda, apalagi kalangan anak Remaja yang belum bisa menyaring akan apa yang mereka lihat dan “konsumsi” dari sebuah Film. Coba sekarang saya tanya, “Sebutkan artis paling cantik di Indonesia menurut Anda? Artis Pria Mana yang Paling “Hot”? Film Mana yang Membekas di Hati Anda?” (Tulis Jawabannya di Komentar Bawah ini ya?)

Film Indonesia — Moral Bangsa

“Lagi-lagi, Moral. Bisa enggak sih kita tuh berhenti ngomongin soal Moral? Masalah bangsa tuh udah lebih banyak dari ini”, protes salah satu mahasiswa saya waktu saya mengajar Cross Culture Understanding (Pemahaman Antar – Budaya). Jawab saya, “Oh, Tidak Bisa. Bukankah Indonesia itu Korupsi, Kolusi, dan Nepotisme, juga karena bobroknya Moral? Dalam Islam, bukankah Moral itu yang namanya Akidah dan Akhlakul Karimah? Dan bukankah Moral itu berkaitan dengan Pancasila?” Alasannya begini: “Moral, tidak berbentuk, dan abstrak, alias tidak bisa dilihat. Tuhan pun tidak bisa dilihat. Tidak suka membicarakan Moral, berarti tidak suka akan keberadaan Tuhan di tengah-tengah kehidupan kita. Bukankah Agama itu fungsinya untuk menjadikan manusia lebih manusia?”

Apa kaitannya dengan Film? Pengalaman saya ketika saya mau berangkat ke Amerika, saya menonton film Hollywood, mulai dari yang ada “esek-eseknya” dengan yang banyak adegan perkelahian serta yang penuh dengan nuansa science dan teknologi. (Anda tahu kok, yang mana aja). Nah, ketika saya sampai ke Los Angeles, terus ke Atlanta, dan kemudian ke Detroit, terus singgah ke Minneapolis, dan St. Louis, saya perhatikan kok kehidupan di Amerika itu jauh sekali dengan apa yang disampaikan oleh Film-nya ya? Memang sih, film tidak mencerminkan dunia nyata. Saya tahu itu. Namun, apa yang terjadi? Yang terjadi adalah saya “disuguhkan” secara tidak sadar untuk melihat Amerika itu bagaimana, terutama perihal “selera film” mereka, dan unsur-unsur budaya lainnya, seperti gaya bicara dalam Bahasa Inggris, cara memakai baju, dan berbagai macam kebiasaan hidup sehari-hari. Ketika saya lihat yang nyata, kok berbeda? Ternyata kehidupan di Amerika Serikat itu lebih kompleks daripada yang saya bayangkan (karena saya belajar Topik ini di negara tersebut). Nah, ketika saya sudah berada di Amerika, baru jelas “konteks” film Hollywood tersebut. Saya pun mengerti akan “selera” orang Amerika Serikat dengan “selera” orang Indonesia berbeda dari segi dimensi psikologis, sosial, dan kebiasaan hidup mereka sehari-hari. Ingat, Konteks Film berkaitan dengan Siapa Pemirsa dan Latar Belakang Film tersebut ditayangkan. Bagaimana kalau itu terjadi dengan Film Indonesia? Kita punya Film Berbau Hantu, Pocong, dan Kuntilanak (dominan), apa kita mau orang luar itu menilai kehidupan kita dari sana? Kita malah akan menjadi generasi paranoid. Bukannya takut kepada Sang Pencipta Alam (Allah SWT), malah takut ke Hantu, Pocong, dan Kuntilanak. Bayangkan kalau Film kita tidak mencerminkan Moral Bangsa kita, atau tidak mengajarkan Moral yang baik-baik, apa jadinya bangsa kita di mata dunia? Meski sih, banyak “penyakit-penyakit” yang perlu diperbaiki sana-sini, nggak cuma “Film”, namun, setidaknya, membuat Film yang mendidik dengan baik dan benar kan termasuk salah satu upaya untuk kita agar bisa membawa kita ke upaya kemajuan Indonesa yang baik dari segi aspek spiritual (di mana aspek ini memang kurang di berbagai belahan dunia). Kepekaan Penulis, Sutradara, dan Produser sangat diperlukan dalam hal ini. Contohnya? Banyak yang bisa dijadikan Film. Tinggal, kejelian Penulis, Sutradara, dan Produser membaca keinginan Pemirsa Indonesia (yang jumlahnya Jutaan) jika ingin Film-nya laku keras, bukan sekedar membuat Film yang diniatkan mendapat Profit, namun isinya biasa-biasa saja, malah membuat kontroversi. Itu kan, sia-sia, namanya. Di mana letak etika perfilman kalau begitu?

Film Asing — Politik dan Ideologi

“Wah, apa pula ini? Berat kali kata-kata kau, bah!”, katanya. Kataku, “Kalau begitu, kapan kamu mau belajar?” Oke, sekarang kita lihat ke Film Asing dan apa kaitannya dengan Politik dan Ideologi. Kok bisa? Seperti yang saya jelaskan di atas, sebuah Film diproduksi dan dipengaruhi oleh “konteks” di mana Film tersebut akan diproduksi, ditayangkan, dan diedarkan. Logikanya, jika Suhu Politik dan Ideologi di negara di mana Film tersebut dibuat tidak kondusif, besar kemungkinan Film yang akan ditayangkan berisi kritikan terhadap negara itu sendiri, namun perlu juga diingat, di Indonesia sudah ada Badan Perfilman Indonesia tidak? Di negara lain, mereka memiliki konsep “hukum” mereka sendiri, yang cukup berbeda dengan kita. Misalnya, konsep kebebasan atau “freedom”. Dinamika kehidupan mereka juga berbeda dengan kita, yang seringkali dinamika ini dipengaruhi oleh kultur mereka yang turun temurun, kemudian iklim, kondisi geografis, dan pengaruh budaya baru dari imigran yang ingin menjadi warga negara di negara tersebut. Namun, ketika kita lihat proses disetujuinya sebuah Film untuk layak edar ke publik, kita lihat dulu, konteks “mengapa” film tersebut bisa layak edar. Kita lihat film Hollywood, apakah mereka memproduksi film setelah mencermati budaya negara lain? Kan tidak. Bollywood? Apakah mereka memperhatikan budaya Pemirsa dari negara lain? Kan tidak. Boro-boro. Mereka tentu juga punya “selera” mereka masing-masing. Selera ini pun dibentuk dan dipengaruhi oleh kondisi politik dan ideologi di mana mereka tinggal dan dibesarkan. Hal yang sama juga terjadi pada kita. Itu sebabnya, ketika kita menonton film buatan luar negeri, kita cenderung menikmatinya sebatas menikmati, meski pada hakikatnya, cara kita berfikir dan memutuskan sesuatu dalam hidup, juga bisa dipengaruhi oleh apa yang kita “lihat”. Salah satunya, ya, dari Film. Mungkin saat ini kita sekedar menonton saja sebuah Film, tapi coba ketika seseorang menyebut sebuah kata saja yang berkaitan dengan Film yang kita tonton tersebut, apakah pikiran kita otomatis ingat kepada “sesuatu”? Lalu, apa bedanya dengan Iklan, coba? Bagaimana Iklan di Indonesia? Bukankah Film juga bisa digunakan sebagai Media Informasi Politik dan Ideologi melalui Alam Bawah Sadar? Kalau Anda ke Mall, misalnya, Anda cenderung membeli Produk yang ada Iklannya, atau sekedar beli-beli doank? Penonton awam mungkin tidak “ngeh” akan hal ini sebab ketika menonton Film, tidak dilandasi dengan pengetahuan yang ada, sekedar menonton, atau on the surface. Bagi penonton aktif dan kritis, dia seringkali suka mempertanyakan: “Kenapa begitu?; Kok bisa sih?; atau Maksudnya apa Film ini?” Biasanya, yang kritis seperti ini tentu yang memiliki Wawasan di dalam Memahami Film dan mendalami Makna Film tersebut dibuat. Kalau kita bisa menikmati sebuah Film, sekaligus meng-kritisi nilai-nilai yang ada di dalamnya, Kenapa tidak? Sebagai penonton Kritis, tentu sudah kewajiban kita untuk berbagi makna apa yang kita peroleh dari Film yang kita tonton. Bisa jadi penonton lain sekedar nonton doank, dan kita tahu jelas makna Film-nya secara positif dan negatif?

Film Indonesia — Mencerdaskan Bangsa

“Bangsa Indonesia sudah cerdas, kok, mereka udah tahu apa yang mereka lihat dan kerjakan”, kata seseorang pada saya. Saya jawab, “Waduh, jangan percaya. Kalau percaya, berarti elo sama aja dengan enggak mau maju, dan mendekati sifat Ujub, bangga diri, yang akhirnya enggak membawa elo ke mana-mana, selain menjadi stagnan, atau itu-itu aja. Akhirnya, elo dan bangsa elo kagak bakal mau belajar, karena sudah ngerasa cerdas”. Sekarang, kita kembalikan ke Film kita. Apa perlu Film itu harus mencerdaskan bangsa? Lalu bagaimana Film yang mencerdaskan bangsa itu? Begini, tadi di atas kita kan sudah membahas mengenai kaitan antara Konteks dan Pemirsa, sekarang, kita lihat kepada konsep kata “cerdas”. Menurut saya, Cerdas itu tidak sama dengan Pintar. Seseorang yang memiliki nilai Matematika misalnya, berarti ia Pintar di dalam Matematika. Seperti saya misalnya (ceilah), saya bisa Berbahasa Inggris, itu namanya Pintar Berbahasa Inggris (meski saya akui, Bahasa Inggris saya tidak bagus-bagus amat kayak native speakers itu. Lol.). Cerdas itu, menurut saya, bisa menggunakan Ilmu yang dimiliki untuk menyelesaikan masalah yang ada dan yang sedang dihadapi dengan benar dan baik tanpa ada penyesalan di kemudian hari. Coba kita lihat ke bangsa kita? Masalah macam apa yang enggak ada coba? Banyak kan? Nah, apakah kita mau Film Indonesia juga menciptakan masalah baru di tengah-tengah pemirsa?

Bukankah Cerdas namanya jika melalui Film kita menyajikan ke Pemirsa Indonesia akan sebuah Masalah atau Realita yang ada (bukan dari masalah pengalaman pribadi seseorang yang seringkali bias dan terlalu subjektif), lalu kita sampaikan sebuah Solusi akan permasalahan yang ada dengan bingkai agama dan budaya Indonesia yang baik dan benar, bukan dibuat-buat. Perlu diingat, Solusi yang diberikan harus dari sudut pandang agama dan budaya kita, bukan dari apa yang baik dan bagus menurut Sutradara dan Produser. Jika tidak, itu tadi, bisa melanggar Konteks, dan pada akhirnya Pemirsa akan merasa terintimidasi dan tersinggung dengan penayangan Film tersebut. Sekali Film dibuat, sekalipun dihapus, akan ada-ada saja pihak yang mengait-ngaitkan Film tersebut dengan konsep-konsep ini itu, yang pada akhirnya akan membuat beberapa kelompok masyarakat akan termarjinalkan. Lebih dalam dari ini, kita lihat ke bangsa kita. Tidak semua orang yang pernah mengelilingi Indonesia, itu Fakta. Nah, ini juga bisa dijadikan Film, bukan melulu soal Agama dan Budaya saja, bisa juga bertema tentang Alam Indonesia, agar orang Indonesianya lebih peduli lagi dengan alamnya. Kerja sama antara Dinas Pariwisata dengan Dunia Perfilman Indonesia, juga oke kan? Selain Film seperti ini memuat Realita Alam Indonesia, Film ini juga akan bernilai jangka panjang bila ditonton oleh generasi Indonesia yang mempelajari Karya Seni bangsanya nanti di tahun-tahun mendatang. Bisa jadi ada mata kuliah berjudul “Perfilman Indonesia”, ya ‘kan? Apakah orang Bali pernah ke Padang, misalnya? Apa yang mereka ketahui tentang kehidupan di Padang, misalnya? Apakah orang Bandung, pernah ke Jayapura, misalnya? Masih banyak kan yang bisa dijadikan bahan materi menjadi Film?

Berikut ini beberapa poin yang ingin saya sampaikan kepada Penulis Film, Sutradara, dan Produser. Poin-poin ini masih sederhana, namun saya berharap untuk bisa dipertimbangkan dengan seksama.

Sebelum Membuat Film

  1. Pahami Karakter dan Budaya Bangsa dengan Secermat-cermatnya – Ingat Pemirsa : “Siapa Penonton Karya Saya?”, misalnya.
  2. Hindari Membuat Film yang Terlalu Banyak Adegan “Panas” (kalau perlu tidak ada) – Ingat, Industri Pornografi tidak akan pernah berhenti karena itu buatan negara lain, jadi tidak penting kalau Film Indonesia menyuguhkan hal yang serupa. Film Indonesia harus lebih kreatif dari ini. Jangan menyuguhkan hal yang biasa jadi murahan.
  3. Cari Inspirasi dari Kisah-Kisah Orang Indonesia yang Sukses dan Berhasil dalam Hidupnya. Itu lebih Nyata. Sebab, sudah ada Solusinya pada Mereka. – Ingat, Film yang Baik itu adalah Yang Menginspirasi kepada Kemajuan dan Kebaikan, bukan menyisakan Tanda Tanya, di mana Tidak Semua Pemirsa yang Berfikir dengan pola dan struktur yang sama. Alhasil, Film Anda pun sia-sia, dan tidak bermanfaat bagi Pemirsa. Perkejaan yang sia-sia itu, tentu bukan karakter bangsa kita, kan? Kan katanya mau maju? Trus, kan katanya mau jauh dari penjajahan? Kok malah niru gaya orang lain, ya toh?
  4. Sering-sering baca Novel karya Penulis Indonesia – Ingat, Pemirsa Utama adalah Bangsa Indonesia. Kalau Novel yang akan diangkatkan menjadi Film adalah Novel karya Penulis Indonesia, maka besar kemungkinan “selera” Pemirsa Indonesia juga sama. Ini membantu Pemirsa Indonesia untuk memahami “konteks” film tersebut. Dan, tidak perlu membawa tema yang berat-berat, yang ringan-ringan saja, tapi menarik, dan bisa dijadikan pembelajaran. Tidak usah difikirkan “selera” Pemirsa luar negeri, sebab mereka juga sudah punya banyak stok Film di negara mereka. Laku di Indonesia saja sudah membawa Jutaan Rupiah, mengapa Repot-Repot Memikirkan Untung dari Negara Luar? Pada bagian ini, tentu penting kita lihat Konteks Film kita. Kalau masalah sensitif Budaya dan Agama kita diangkat, sebaiknya jangan. Masih ada wadah dan media yang lebih proporsional untuk hal ini.
  5. Pahami Dampak Film Tersebut bagi Anda – Ingat, Tidak Semua Pemirsa akan Berfikir seperti Anda. Kalau Film yang Anda buat itu berkisah tentang Realita dan Masalah Kehidupan, berikan Solusinya yang Konkret, Jelas, dan Masuk Akal serta sesuai dengan Konteks di mana Pemirsa Hidup dan Tinggal, apalagi disesuaikan dengan Konteks Agama dan Budaya mereka. Bukankah Anda akan bahagia jika Film Anda bisa membawa kedamaian di hati Pemirsa? Bagaimana rasanya bagi Anda, bila beberapa Pemirsa Anda mengungkapkan rasa senangnya setelah menonton karya Film Anda? Dan bagaimana pula rasanya jika Anda mendengar dan membaca caci maki Pemirsa Film Anda?
  6. Diskusi dengan Pakar-Pakar yang Menguasai Ilmu Perfilman, Budaya, Seni; dan Belajar dari Film-Film Box Office Indonesia, bukan Box Office Negara Lain. Ini penting, karena berkaitan dengan Konteks. Dari seluruh Film kita yang laku keras, coba dianalisa Film seperti apa yang masih “disukai” Pemirsa, kalau memang niat Anda ingin mendapat Profit. Pertahankan ke arah demikian. Sepertinya, Pemirsa kita, pilih-pilih di dalam menonton Film. Dan, sistem pemasaran Film biasanya dari mulut ke mulut, dan dari blog ke blog, serta dari status di FB mereka, atau Twitter, dan bahkan radio, serta pamflet yang disebarkan di kampus-kampus. Kalau saja satu orang kritis terhadap Film Anda, maka, besar kemungkinan teman-temannya yang lain juga tidak akan suka. Jadi, sebaiknya perhatikan betul konsep Konteks dan Pemirsa jika Anda ingin Film Anda laku dan diminati oleh Pemirsa Indonesia.
  7. Selalu Ingat Pemirsa – Ingat, Pemirsa itu Individu, bukan Khalayak Ramai, tidak bisa dipukul Rata. Bisa jadi karya Film Anda sangat berarti bagi seseorang yang Anda kenal, (atau Anda ketahui di dunia maya, misalnya), namun bukan berarti Anda membuat Film untuk dia seorang, kan? Apa manfaatnya bagi orang banyak untuk mengetahui dan menyaksikan Film ini? Diskusikan dengan teman dan rekan-rekan Pakar Ilmu Budaya, Sastra, Film, dan Bahasa, serta Pendidikan, yang duduk manis di kantor mereka di berbagai Universitas di Indonesia mengenai inspirasi yang Anda dapat. Dan juga, tanyakan juga kepada anak-anak muda yang sedang nongkrong, Film seperti apa yang bagus buat mereka. Apalagi kalau tema Film Anda adalah Agama dan Budaya. Tema ini sangat-sangat berat untuk diangkat. Kalau tidak punya landasan yang jelas mengenai Agama dan Budaya apa yang akan Anda angkat, Anda hanya akan menghasilkan kekisruhan. Hal yang sensitif tidak perlu disajikan, sebab, bukankah budaya bangsa Indonesia, yang suka menjaga perasaan sesamanya? Kalau kita membuat Film dengan tujuan dan target Pemirsa yang jelas, pasti Film kita, paling tidak, bernilai manfaat bagi Pemirsa kan? Film yang bagus itu, menurut saya, adalah yang bila kita tonton berulang-ulang, akan selalu ada makna dan nilai yang ada di dalamnya, tidak hanya sekedar sebatas mengangkat isu terkini atau hal-hal yang sudah jelas garis pembatasnya di tengah kehidupan kita. Orang awam pun, jika mereka suka dengan sebuah Film, pasti akan dibeli Copy-nya yang asli, dan dipinjamkan ke teman-temannya. Alhadil, Pemirsa Anda akan lebih banyak ketimbang yang duduk di bioskop. Secara jangka panjang, pasti akan mengikuti karya-karya Anda kembali ke kemudian hari. Jadi, mana yang penting, unsur Profit, atau unsur manfaat jangka panjang dari Film Anda itu?

Pada saat membuat Film:

  • 1. Apakah Pemain Film sudah terkenal atau pemula?

Ini perlu diperhatikan dengan baik karena “image” pemain Film akan mempengaruhi Pemirsa di saat menonton Film. Kalau pemain Film-nya sudah kadung memiliki image yang baik di mata masyarakat, berikan kesempatan kepada pemain Pemula, agar mata orang Indonesia segar dengan apa yang mereka saksikan di Film Anda. Namun, tidak salah juga mempertahankan selebritis yang bagus dan baik kepribadiannya di tengah masyarakat. Sekalipun dia bermain antagonis, toh, orang akan tetap suka padanya. Kalau pun selebritis itu berperan baik-baik, atau protagonis, misalnya, orang tetap tidak akan suka kalau kenyataannya si dia punya perilaku buruk dan tidak patut dicontoh.

  • 2. Apakah Lokasi atau Setting Pembuatan Film memiliki Sejarah atau Intrik Khusus dengan Film yang akan Dibuat? Kira-kira, reaksi warga Indonesia mengenai lokasi tersebut bagaimana?

Kalau kita Arif dan Bijaksana, kita tentu seharusnya tahu apa kaitan antara Film kita dengan lokasi syuting. Jangan salah lho, Film-Film Barat itu sangat mementingkan Lokasi. Lokasi berbicara secara tidak langsung kepada Pemirsa. Karena lokasinya di “New York”, maka terkesan Oke kan? Coba tengok Film-Film yang berlokasi di kota-kota besar Amerika Serikat, misalnya. Makanya banyak yang suka karena kata “New York” saja sudah membuat orang lain suka. Coba kalau kita menonton Film yang lokasinya di daerah kumuh, atau tempat-tempat di negeri dongeng, apa ingatan kita tertuju pada suatu tempat di sekeliling kita? Setiap Pemirsa, memiliki ingatan tersendiri lho, soal lokasi syuting dan setting di mana cerita Film tersebut dimainkan. Dan, yang lebih lagi, Film juga bisa digunakan untuk memasarkan nama dari suatu kota atau negara, misalnya, Australia. Oleh sebab itu, sensitifitas Sutradara dan Produser di dalam membaca situasi ini penting. Buat saja Film yang  disukai Pemirsa sesuai Konteks, pasti kemungkinan laku sangat besar. Jadi, enggak perlu berbelit-belit, kan? Apalagi yang kontroversi, mereka juga bakal menonton, tapi jika setelah menonton karya Anda, Pemirsa Anda malah mengutuk pekerjaan Anda, apa manfaatnya, coba? Tentu kedamaian di hati Anda, akan terusik. Jika tidak, yah, Tuhan Maha Tahu.

  • 3. Apakah Alur Cerita Masuk Akal?

Pemirsa akan bertanya-tanya di saat menonton Film. Apa iya, bisa begitu? Misalnya, dari itik menjadi kuda zebra. Kok bisa? Ya, itu masuk ke wilayah animasi. Bisa aja, karena memang beranjak dari dunia tidak nyata. Kalau dunia nyata? Ya tentu buat Film yang Alur Ceritanya Masuk Akal. Jangan sampai Pemirsa ketawa cekikikan pas tahu, kalau Judulnya Serius, eh, alurnya seperti perubahan dari sebuah batu menjadi burung elang. Kalau animasi, ya animasi, segala hal bisa terjadi. Tapi kalau Film dari dunia nyata, tentu kita bisa mengukur, sejauh mana sih “ke-tidak-masuk-akal-an” yang disuguhkan? Kalau Filmnya tidak Masuk Akal, seperti Super Hero, jangan tanggung-tanggung, meski tetap sisi kemanusian harus tetap ada. Lalu tanya juga, “Masuk Akal, nggak? Apa kira-kira orang lain akan mengalami Hal yang sama? Kira-kira, bagaimana ya?”

  • 4. Apakah Unsur-Unsur Kebudayaan Sudah Direpresentasikan dengan Baik?

Ini penting lho. Bayangkan kalau seandainya sebuah kata kasar di daerah Batak, misalnya, digunakan sebebas mungkin di Film Anda yang justru malah menghina orang Batak karena tidak sesuai dengan Konteksnya. Film Anda sudah terlanjur dibuat dan diedarkan. Lalu bagaimana? Kan kita sudah tahu pepatah orang Indonesia, “Sedia Payung Sebelum Hujan”, yang sama dengan konsep, “Better Safe than Sorry” di mata dunia. Itu sebabnya, sensitifitas akan kebudayaan bangsa kita itu penting. Jika tidak, tentu Film yang Anda buat itu malah menjadi Titik Api, yang malah mengobarkan masalah baru di khalayak Pemirsa? Sebaiknya, alangkah baiknya jika Film kita itu, dibuat untuk memberikan penerangan akan Solusi dari sebuah Permasalah Hidup yang ada, dan Solusi tersebut harus sesuai dengan, kembali, Agama dan Budaya kita, serta Hukum dan Aturan Negara kita. Kata siapa membuat Film itu, gampang? Susah lho. Capek juga. Yang gampang itu membuat Film Sampah, seperti Pornografi itu. Isinya itu-itu aja, tidak ada penambahan (bagi Anda yang dewasa, pasti mengerti akan hal ini). Maka dari itu, kita tentu tidak ingin menjadikan karya kita sia-sia, ‘kan?

  • 5. Apakah Kostum yang Digunakan pada Film ini akan Menyinggung Sekelompok Etnis di Indonesia?

Perlukah bagian ini? Perlu. Bukankah budaya kita terkenal dengan pakaiannya yang baik dan rapi? Kalau Film Anda bertema Agama dan Budaya, usahakan Anda mengerti dulu, mana yang boleh dan tidak boleh di agama dan budaya tersebut, termasuk perihal pakaian atau Kostum. Jika Anda sembarangan membuat karya yang tidak sesuai dengan Agama dan Budaya, berarti Anda sudah berniat jahat terhadap Agama dan Budaya tersebut. Sederhana, tapi memang demikian adanya, kan? Penjual yang baik itu, yang menjual barang dagangan berkualitas tinggi, dan tentu, kalau Pembeli Komplen, itu hak si Pembeli. Kita tentu pernah menjadi Pembeli kan? Tentu mengerti kenapa Pembeli bisa Komplen. Mengenai Budaya Etnis, lebih baik kita angkat etnis tersebut ke Film kita, sembari kita berikan Solusi yang baik dari permasalahan yang mereka hadapi melalui Film kita dengan sudut pandang yang sejelas-jelasnya. Itu baru namanya, Seni, bukan sekedar Gambar Bergerak. Coba bayangkan, misalnya, pakaian tradisional Bali, digunakan untuk tema pelacuran di kota Jakarta, kan enggak nyambung, malah itu menghina budaya Bali, kan? Ingat lagi konsep Konteks dan Pemirsa.

  • 6. Apakah Totalitas Akting Pemain Film sesuai dengan Bagaimana Dirinya di Dunia Nyata?

Media Informasi dan Teknologi berkembang pesat di Indonesia, termasuk Televisi, Koran, dan Majalah. Peran Pers di dalam membuat berita mengenai selebriti juga bisa mempengaruhi bagaimana Pemirsa “menilai dan melihat” sebuah Film. Jika saja ada selebriti yang reputasinya buruk di media massa Indonesia, sudah tentu Pemirsa sedikit enggan menyaksikan Film Anda, kecuali jika memang Film Anda pantas dan layak ditonton oleh Pemirsa. Pemirsa yang kritis dengan Film akan berfikir, Manfaat Film ini buat Gue Apaan ya? Gue enggak mau buang-buang duit dan waktu cuma buat Film ini doank. Begitu.. Kan, bangsa Indonesia, sudah mulai cerdas? Apa iya?

  • 7. Apakah Unsur Seni disini Berupa Keindahan Bahasa dan Cerita atau Keindahan Tubuh Belaka?

Seni yang baik itu, adalah Seni yang menggugah hati, rasa, dan indera, bukan hanya nafsu. Melihat foto-foto pose selebritis wanita atau pria yang telanjang atau pun hampir telanjang, tidak akan membawa apa-apa selain dangkalnya unsur Seni. Lagi-lagi, kita lihat Konteks Seni di sini. Seni di Indonesia itu, seperti apa? Apa nonton orang bertelanjang di depan layar atau yang sedang bersetubuh? Tidak, kan? Trus, video lagu dangdut itu, bagaimana? Itu sih, biasa, cuma goyang-goyang aja. Kalau sudah menayangkan video manusia yang berpose hampir bugil, sama artinya dengan menggunakan seorang manusia demi objek seks. Apa bedanya dengan menonton penari bugil di bar? Bagaimana rasanya jika Anda sedang berpose seperti itu dipublikasikan ke khalayak ramai? Apa Anda mau? Saya sih, enggak, meski dengan bayaran jutaan pun. Bukan karena saya jelek atau tidak secakep artis lainnya, cuma karena saya tahu akan jati diri sebagai orang Indonesia. Buat apa sekolah kalau pada titik ini, masih mau dibodohi orang. Ya, kan?

Setelah Membuat Film:

1. Serahkan semua penilaian tentang Film Anda kepada Pemirsa. Bukankah Anda membuat Film, sebagai sebuah karya, untuk Pemirsa Indonesia agar mereka bisa menjadi lebih baik menurut pandangan Anda? Jika mereka tidak suka, itu kan bagus, bisa dijadikan bahan untuk membuat Film yang lebih baik lagi di kemudian hari?

2. Berikan Penjelasan Mendasar pada Bagian Awal Film tersebut agar Pemirsa Mengerti “Konteks” bagaimana Film tersebut Harus Dilihat supaya Tidak Ada Kontroversi Mengenai Film Anda dan Anda tidak perlu dilaporkan ke Pengadilan karena Alasan Pencemaran Nama Baik, Baik Nama Baik atas Nama Individu, Suku, Agama, Ras, dan atau Kebudayaan Daerah di Indonesia. Ini penting, lho.

3. Buat Trailer Film Anda semenarik-menariknya dan Sesuaikan dengan Alur Cerita Film secara Keseluruhan. Anda tidak mau, kan, calon Pemirsa lari atau membenci Anda hanya karena menonton Trailer Anda yang jelek? Sekalipun hanya dari Trailer, adalah hak Pemirsa untuk menilai kualitas Film yang Anda buat. Jika Trailernya jelek, mana mungkin Pemirsa akan membuat duit dan waktunya untuk menonton Filmnya secara keseluruhan?


Silahkan ambil sendiri-sendiri ya.

Saya cuma menjelaskan saja. Boleh diambil dan dicerna baik-baik. Jika ada yang kurang pas di hati, silahkan komentar di bawah ini ya. Jika setuju, jelaskan juga mengapa Anda setuju.


Sukses selalu perfilman Indonesia! Jadilah yang unik dan kreatif. Bukan jadi pengikut gaya Film orang. Be yourself as the way who you are, if you find something good that people say for your achievement and you, deeply inside you know that, please don’t deny it ~ 

Merdeka Indonesia! Indonesia Raya! 🙂

(Ditulis di Edwardsville, Illinois, Amerika Serikat, January 5, 2013)

Collection of Facebook Statuses (2009 – 2012)

The following post is collection of my Facebook statuses before I resign from using it. For statuses with pictures and links, I am not including those in here because I consider deleting them entirely.

(Berikut ini adalah koleksi status Facebook yang saya tulis. Status yang ada gambar dan linknya tidak saya sertakan karena saya anggap semuanya sudah terhapus).


Menikmati suasana kota Padang di tepi pantai yg berkarang minggu ini. Aku berpikir, “Jika saja semua anak muda kota Padang selalu berpikir standar hidup sukses adalah menjadi orang kaya di rantau, wajar saja provinsi Sumatera Barat lambat kemajuannya”. 


Tahun Baru? Saatnya merenungi apa yg sudah dilewati di sepanjang tahun 2010. Ada suka, duka, lara, bahagia, kecewa, senang, sedih, iba, dan semuanya. Namun, satu hal yg pasti. Aku bersyukur telah diberi kehidupan di dunia ini utk merasakan arti sayang dan cinta. Semua rasa yg kualami senantiasa menjadi guru bagiku untuk menapaki licin dan terjalnya kehidupan ini. 2011, semoga lebih baik! Amin!

Di Facebook ini, semua orang punya hak untuk bebas berekspresi dan berpendapat. Kecuali, melecehkan orang lain dengan kata-kata. Style setiap org dalam memberikan komen pasti berbeda-beda. Begitu juga kepribadian dan cara berfikir orang yg komen. Kalo ga begitu, pasti tidak akan seru Facebook ini.


In my life, I never celebrate Happy New Year with having parties like consuming alcoholic drinks, drugs, or the other like. I hope my friends understand this. It’s my personal right. What I usually do is to reflect myself and pray to God for all the great blessings that I have in the previous year. To think and learn the bad and good things of the past, learn from things in these recent days, and prepare for the dynamics of the upcoming days and colors… By that, I consider that I want to be a wiser person and be someone whose mind and action are for the days after tomorrow. Thanks my mom and dad, my family, my dearest friends, love you all, as always….with no hesitation ^_^

I hate conflict. I hate war. I hate rumors about people are killing people. I hate reading news that inform people were killed and tortured out there. Oh man, in what way I could see this world as “fair” and “beautiful” then? We have been living in the same word as “human” but why such devilish “action” still happen? Where is the so-called “good brain”? Where is peace? Where is mutual respect? Where is tolerance? Where is the “smartness”? Where is the so-called “modern” and “post-modern”? Where is the “genius”? It’s such a shame to know people “silently kill” one another because of “money” and “politics”. Isn’t that cruel? So sad…

Well, this semester is just a beginning. From three graduate courses, I have no C. Only A and B. Alhamdulillah….! Thanks for people who help me in adapting myself how to live here, how to get around and also to a “folk” out there who has just come home. That contributes to my success in studying at the earlier times of this semester.

The video of Tsunami… I cried watching this. This tsunami hit all kinds of people in all backgrounds and some tourists too, no matter who they are and in what faith or religion they are. Since I was in that kind of condition before, then,…I know how it feels losing a member of family although my first brother died not because of tsunami. I do love my family, my mom and dad, my brother and sister, as well as my dearest friends.. Then, I was thinking through the mindset of financial experts nowadays, if only I have lots of money in this world, but living this life without people I love, what does the money mean? What does the fancy car mean? What does the huge and tall building mean? What does the huge amount of money in the bank account mean but you’re lonely..? You gonna die soon and that’s an exact thing. You can’t run from it. But you don’t have people to share with of what you have? What does it mean to be a human when all we want in life is only money, money, and money? We need money but that because of a system. A system that we create. Our nature is never organized by money. Can we buy the shine of the sun? Can we buy the oxygen that we use everyday? Can we buy the snow to come? Can we make all weather into warm? We create a system with money but then we become a slave of the system. Being a monster when people talk about business. Being radical when things go into profit and income. Oh, God, please allow me to be still a good person as you would like me to be.. If someday I am rich, God, let I use money properly but never let money uses me to do something bad.. Insya Allah.. And only those who “think” can think of the truth..

My students asked me, “Sir, how could you be in the United States? You must be rich, right?” Then, I said to my students in FB, “No, I am in the US through Fulbright scholarship. I am not rich. It’s hard for me to live on my own money”. They responded, “Wow, that’s awesome..!”. I replied, “It does not happen just in one night, but, after a loooooooooooooooooooooooong journey in my life, after better and worse condition. I am from poor family so I know pretty sure how great this opportunity is. Opportunity to LEARN much as a learner.”

Mendiamkan pertanyaan lebih buruk dari jawaban ‘saya tidak tahu’. Terlalu pentingkah gengsi diri menjawab pertanyaan dari orang yg bodoh dan tidak tahu? Oh, betapa ilmu itu milik Allah SWT.


If you have a brain, think of this verse in Qur’an. Muslims already know Biology, Geography, and Psychology, long before the creation of these subjects. “O People, if you should be in doubt about the Resurrection, then [consider that] indeed, We created you from dust, then from a sperm-drop, then from a clinging clot, and then from a lump of flesh, formed and unformed – that We may show you. And
We settle in the wombs whom We will for a specified term, then We bring you out as a child, and then [We develop you] that you may reach your [time of] maturity. And among you is he who is taken in [early] death, and among you is he who is returned to the most decrepit [old] age so that he knows, after [once having] knowledge, nothing. And you see the earth barren, but when We send down upon it rain, it quivers and swells and grows [something] of every beautiful kind.” Qur’an, Alh-Haj: 5. So, how can I trust what people think if for this simple matter is vividly available in the Qur’an? I love you, Qur’an. Yeah, may Allah SWT forgives those who deny your truthfulness and who treat Muslims as their enemies. And, may Allah SWT forgives those who considered themselves as Muslims but not doing what they are told to do so by Allah SWT.
On top of that, may Allah SWT put all faithful Muslims worldwide in Jannah, the Wonderful Paradise. This world is material. What is the point of being rich while you will be dead someday? Amen! Happy Idul Adha! ^_^

Alhamdulillah. “Their meat will not reach Allah, nor will their blood, but what reaches Him is piety from you. Thus have We subjected them to you that you may glorify Allah for that [to] which He has guided you; and give good tidings to the doers of good.” Q.S Al-Haj: 37. Insya Allah. Happy Idul Adha for all my Muslim brothers and sisters in Indonesia and in the United States of America, especially in the world!

Kalau nio barazaki banyak, hilangan dengki, iri, cangok, jo ceke dalam diri, sarato parangai mampaburuak-buruak an urang. Hiduik ko bak cando kaco. Ba a awak mampalakuan urang, mode itu lo urang mampalakuan awak. Sakali kato marunciang, salamonyo urang maleh mandanga. Pahaluih budi baso, indak paguno jadi urang santiang tapi marunciang kama pai. Indak paralu pitih banyak, tapi urang kanai palaka
k dek awak. Indak dek baju urang sanang mancaliak awak, tapi dek baso, kato, jo raso. Indak badan surang nan ka mamasuak an ka kubua do, tapi urang nan masih hiduik. Jan berang kalau urang indak nio manolong, dek karano awak salamo hiduik mambuek sansaro hiduik urang. Mangko dari tu, Alah baelok-elok jo tetangga, kawan, dan dunsanak? Sabalun tibo masonyo, rancak lah kito samo-samo baiyo-iyo, basaba-saba.. Bacakak tu karajo urang nan andia, tele, jo tengak. Nan acok marasai dek kanai kecek, dikicuah, dipacaritoan, diasuang, dipilakak, picayolah, Tuhan sayang ka inyo. Urang nan acok mangicuah jo panduto, indak paralu pai ka Makah, kalau parangai masih indak batua, inyo ka sansaro di dunia, kanai lacuik di akhirat. Ambo tuka bapandai-pandai, jo “baelok-elok”. “Pandai” indak sadoalahnyo “elok”. Hablum minan naas jo hamblum minallah harus sairiang. Selamat Idul Adha’ ~

Refleksi bulan Oktober 2012, sejenak pikiran melayang ke kampung halaman: Kita punya dua tangan, dua mata, dua telinga, dan dua lubang hidung, serta dua sisi badan. Kanan dan kiri. Sudah semestinya bagi yang berfikir dan berilmu pengetahuan bahwa hidup tidak hanya menerima, tapi juga memberi. Pun tidak hanya memberi, tapi juga menerima. Memberi kebaikan, menerima kebaikan. Memberi kejahatan pada  orang lain, menerima kejahatan juga. Jangan mengharapkan kebaikan dari orang lain, bila kita tidak pernah berbuat baik pada sesama. Siapa yang menzalimi dan menindas orang lain, baik dengan kata-kata, sikap, maupun hanya berupa desahan nafas dalam hati, percayalah, itu semua akan kembali kepadanya. Ada hikmah di balik segenap kejadian. Ada yang bermulut manis, tapi bisanya tajam. Ada yang membakar bagai api, dan keras bagai gelombang laut pasang. Ada yang menghujam bagai pedang, menusuk jauh ke dalam hati. Dingin, bagai salju yang tidak pernah bisa meleleh. Ada yang berbau, tapi tak punya rupa. Tapi, semua kembali pada kita.  Seringkali, kita berfikir bisa mengibuli orang lain dan mengucapkan berbagai macam alasan untuk menutupi kebohongan dan kemunafikan. Tapi, sekalipun kita, tentu tidak akan mampu membohongi diri sendiri dan hati nurani. Siapa pun dia, manusia namanya, punya hati nurani. Masalah muncul seringkali karena hati tidak lagi diindahkan. Lebih baik berdusta daripada mendengar kata hati. Lebih baik menyakiti sesama demi diri terpuaskan. Inikah cermin manusia zaman sekarang? Sungguh, aku bingung. ~ Renunganku saja setelah setahun di negeri orang. Aku tidak sesempurna rekan-rekan yang membaca, hanya menulis apa yang hatiku katakan. Yah, banyak yang indah terlihat, tapi hanya sendiri dinikmati. Kebahagiaan memang kesenangan yang bisa dinikmati bersama dengan orang-orang yang disayangi dan dicintai. Selamat Menuju Hari Idul Adha’ ~

Just my random thought:

If we do not like someone because of the way he or she lives, we might not deserve to be liked as well. There might be some people who do not like the way we live, too. Therefore, be open-minded, considerate, and respectful toward others. What we give to others is what we get back; however, never ask for anything in return. Good for us does not always mean good for others. We are individually unique, guys. In order to understand someone, please always ask, “Do you mind if I….” politely. That shows how educated you are ~ Attitude reflects someone’s education ~

“Kindness is the language which the deaf can hear and the blind can see.” Mark Twain.

Be kind to others does not mean you are lame, but you are strong enough to put yourself behind and avoid being self-centered person.

Happy reading books and doing assignments! ^_^

An interesting statement that I found in a book about African American Studies:

…white, western, civilized, male, adult, urban, middle-class, heterosexual, and so on. It is this profile that has monopolized the definition of humanity in mainstream Western imagery. It is a programme of fear for the rest of the world population (Pieterse 223)” – Pieterse, Jan Nederveen. White in Black: Images
of Africa and Blacks in Western Popular Culture. New Haven and London: Yale University Press, 1992.

My thoughts: If I reflected it to my country today, no wonder why pretty women in Indonesia are those considered as having light skin. See the artists. They really want to look “white”. In fact, Indonesian women are pretty with whatever skin color they have, which is “kuning langsat”. I am so sad when I know some pretty young girls spend their money too much on products that make skin color become “white”, alias “korban iklan”. And, even cursing themselves for how they look! Gee..! I guess that this is the residue of what I could interpret from above quotation. I would say that there is nothing wrong with having specific skin color. As long as you have a skin, you are pretty, girls! Pretty inside is much more important than pretty outside! Makanya, jangan lagi kita menghina orang yang berkulit gelap, karena kecantikan bukan terletak pada warna kulit, tapi dari sikap, cara berfikir, dan dari kesantunan berbahasa – cermin kepribadian. (I wish my sister grows prettier inside and outside)

Women are the icon of beauty and grace. Therefore, in this world of unfairness everywhere, the best word for women is “equity”, not “equality”. “Equality” only limits women’s essential rights. In some other ways, women have higher roles then men. Islam teaches about “equity” long long long time ago. Islam was born when women were treated in such a bad way, during the era of Paganism in the land of Arabs. At this time, women were sex slaves, tortured, killed, and considered as “nothing”, only gave birth; if the baby was a boy, he was alive, but if it was a girl, a bad luck. Therefore, to solve these problems, Islam was born. Islam essentially protected women since then. In this case, did it mean Islam was human-made religion? (Study Islam and its history, be a Muslim and practice it with your heart and will, tell me what you find, not how you use someone else’s ideas on this). What happened to the Western women now, as a reflection of this historically, is that they had been given mislead-fabricated “texts” and they were also not allowed to study, be put as the “second class” (study about feminist ideas in the West if you don’t believe me), and forced to receive lower incomes compared to men (read history more if you disagree and ask for my “reference”). No wonder why women in the West did not see any tremendous freedom that women in the Islamic community could have. Hence, many women realize that Islam gives their rights more than the “equality” could give. Islam gives women freedom from being oppressed and viewed as sexual objects per se. (Look what happened with online media. Do you see how women are being portrayed?) – My reflection after listening to tausiyah of Syaikh Yusuf Estes. May Allah SWT protects all Muslims from all evil actions, thoughts, intentions, and temptations!

Rest In Peace for Chris Stevens as a US Ambassador for Libya. As a Fulbright Student (a Cultural Student Ambassador for Indonesia in the United States), I understand that it is a very difficult job to make good connection among people of different faiths, religion, and nationalities. We tend to see differences instead of similarities. Having been living in the United States for a year, I learn something that one thing for sure, never make jokes about others that make them pissed off. If they have informed certain things that make them sad, please don’t do. It means that I support the act of intellectual and responsible speech rather than freedom of speech but with no responsibility. A nice joke for us might not be a nice joke for others. American people whom I have met are very friendly and welcoming. Every country has its bad sides, that’s true. Our homework is not ended yet. We need to build more mutual understanding worldwide to build peace for each of everyone of our grandchildren! Act honesly, behave responsibly, and speak intellectually are needed this time to support a peaceful life in which everyone and every countries stand equally based on humanity and solidary and peace!

This world belongs to everyone. No matter who they are! No more ignorant and uneducated people, please! Otherwise, we will never see this world live in peace. It is not about the diversity of life, religion, faiths, cultures, nations, and stuffs, BUT it is about the difficulties of some people to OPEN up their mind and heart to KNOW and RECOGNIZE others! What is bad for you is bad for others, too! We live on the same planet, guys.

To all my FB friends, I have a request. I want to stay PRIVATELY connected with you. However, with the recent changes in FB, the public can now see activities on any wall. This happens when a friend hits “like” or “comment.” This automatically allows their friends to read our posts too. We cannot change this setting by ourselves because FB has configured it this way. PLEASE place your mouse over m
y name above (do not click), a window will appear, now move the mouse on “FRIENDS” (also without clicking), then down to “Settings”, click here and a list will appear. REMOVE the CHECK on “COMMENTS & LIKE” by clicking on it. By doing this, my activity amongst my friends and my family will no longer become public. Many thanks! Paste this on your wall so your contacts would follow suit too, that is, if you care about your privacy.

Deeply touching! The view of an American student who went to Malaysia to live with Muslim community and family. She was sponsored by the US Department of State to join in a student exchange program. Post 9/11, she asked herself, “Muslims hate American or American hate Muslims?” She said, “It is our job to realize not only the importance of how we view others, but how others view us”. Going abroad means knowing differences that people have and broadening our views as well as freeing ourselves from things that stop us from growing beyond our personal stereotypical thought. The world is bigger than the map could show us. In my case, thank you, Fulbright! 🙂

Racism does not exist in Islam. Why? Because the prophet Muhammad SWT freed the slave whose name was Billal bin Rabah, a black man. He was the very first person who did the call for prayer for all Muslims. This duty was very high in front of Allah SWT. Muslims did not see the color of skin, the nationality of someone, or the personal character of an individual. Islam asks for plurality and freedom of living peacefully side by side. The concept of brothers and sisters mean we all are connected on this blue planet. Everyone is equal. This is something that is missing in this so called “advanced” world. What on earth are people doing by killing one another in the name of skin color, the nationality, the majority, or the “social status and class”? May God protects us from devilish act that destroys humanity, peace, and solidarity among us.

A fact that the world should know. Muslims are not terrorist. They had been infiltrated by brainwashed people who look for nothing, except taking all the sources that we all share on this planet and dominating the power and money! Be aware of how media can fool you!

Kasus yang paling aneh saya temui di Facebook adalah kebiasaan seseorang menilai orang lain dengan sebutan, “waham”. Jangan gampang menjatuhkan penilaian penyakit mental (psikologis)kepada orang lain yang belum kita temui, apalagi kita “mengenalnya” hanya di Facebook. Sebagai seorang linguist (ahli bahasa), saya paham betul bahwa gampang menilai orang lain dengan buruk dan salah adalah gejala orang yang sedang depresi. Hati-hati ya, guys.

Sebodoh-bodohnya seseorang berkomentar di status Facebook kita, tidak pula arif rasanya menyebut komentarnya “sampah”. Wahai yang merasa dirinya pintar, arif-lah dan bijaksana-lah di dalam menghadapi kekurangan orang lain. Tidak mungkin kita menerima komentar dari setiap orang sesuai dengan yang kita inginkan. Jika tidak suka, hapus. Beres.

When you “hate” someone, make sure that that person is not in your Facebook. If he or she is in your Facebook, whatever he or she writes will sound wrong to you and whatever pictures he or she uploads and tags will look worse in your eyes. Be aware of how hatred destroy your friendship. (No more Facebook sarcasm).

My selected line for today:

“O my people, this worldly life is only [temporary] enjoyment, and indeed, the Hereafter – that is the home of [permanent] settlement.” Qur’an, 40:39.
“Hai kaumku, sesungguhnya kehidupan dunia ini hanyalah kesenangan (sementara) dan sesungguhnya akhirat itulah negeri yang kekal.” Qur’an, 40:39.

So true!

“The basic quality of a Muslim is the clarity of using language. Be simple, be clear, and be humble in using language. Don’t use words which are not common among people around you. Your language reflects who you are. Smart person is not those who speak and write in complex ways, but the individual uses language in understandable ways for other people. I believe this since I was a kid! What an insightful video! Islam covers all the essentials in life: ethics, moral, and self-conduct. After I learn Composition Studies, all what the prophet Muhammad SAW teaches make sense! ~

For my students in Indonesia:
When you discuss with friends about particular topic, stick with your ideas and argument; find realiable reasons to support yours; do not give make-up facts; do not jump into criticizing your opponent’s personality directly when your arguments are defeated. Only small-mind comes into criticizing personality when having solid discussion or debate. Ideas, ideas, and ideas are important than judging the personality of the person whom you speak or discuss with. Be a big-minded person with a large point of view.
(My own experience – often times, my friends got angry when I win the discussion and they accidentally labelled me as, “show off” or “menang sendiri” or “nggak mau kalah jadi orang” or even “sok hebat”. What happens is, I am proud of being called as that). Lol… ^_^ v

“Don’t hide your light under a bushel” – wise words

For my students:

Take the good things you can take and correct the misleading statements you notice in this blog post. You are also welcomed to give comments on the blog. Keep writing! I pray for the success of your study as well. Good luck! ^_^

In your life, trust me, someone may love deeply in his or her heart to you, but he or she could not express the feeling to you; simply because looking at your smile makes his or her happy. S/he does not want to change the beauty of your smile into something else after you know his or her feeling to you… you may not reconize this person so often as friends. You may even forget him or her by this time. So, whoever comes into your life, even though that person comes as a stranger you don’t like, that person may have fallen in love with you, unexpectedly…because of your smile… Oh love, you are so magnificent. You are the core of human’s life… ^_^

Please email me at if you need to contact me. I would not use my Facebook account as frequent as I did usually. I will stop posting new status, upload pictures, and comment on people’s status. I only reply messages in Facebook inbox. May 25, 2012. Thank you for your understanding. (Silahkan email saya ke jika ada yang perlu disampaikan. Saya tidak akan menggunakan Facebook sesering biasanya. Tidak akan ada lagi status baru, upload foto-foto, dan komentar di status orang lain. Saya hanya membalas pesan di inbox Facebook. 25 Mei 2012. Terima kasih atas kerjasamanya.)

My country, Indonesia, gained its independence in 1945. It means 67 years ago. It is a sad feeling when some people compare Indonesia with the United States or even with European countries. Indonesia has been so greatly developed to its present state through mutual partnerships with other countries after being colonized by “those” countries. Therefore, Indonesia is unique. This uniqueness has made this country well-known around the world. How strong political demands from other countries toward this country determines the great developmental dynamics happening within this country. Interesting…

Dalam hidup, suka atau tidak sukanya orang lain pada kita, tidak perlu dipikirkan, pun bagaimana sikapnya kepada kita. Yang penting adalah apakah kita suka dengan orang lain atau tidak. Dengan demikian, kita bisa menilai diri sendiri, apakah kita penuh dengan kebencian atau cinta kasih kepada sesama? – Renungan buat diri sendiri.

As always, people who call you ‘show-off’, they are simply jealous.
If they know you and appreciate things that you have in your life, they would say, “congratulations!”, or, “that’s cool…!”, or even, “that looks good on you, so perfect..!” You deserve good words after the hardwork you do. This is one thing I like from American cultures.

I don’t need the day known as the Happy Mother’s Day. Everyday in my life is your days, mom. Thanks for the comfort and sincere love you gave to me since I was a kid. This world is wild but without your grace, may be I have turned myself to be a useless person. You teach me without asking for any return. You are simply there anytime I need you. Loving you, as always.. your son..

“I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” – Maya Angelou
“Saya sudah tahu bahwa orang akan lupa apa yang Anda katakan, orang akan lupa apa yang Anda lakukan, tapi orang tidak akan lupa bagaimana Anda membuat mereka merasakan sesuatu dari Anda” – Maya Angelou

“A fool thinks himself to be wise, but a wise man knows himself to be a fool.” – William Shakespeare

A life-learning quotation:

“Be as smart as you can, but remember that it is always better to be wise than to be smart” – Alan Alda

Sebuah kisah dalam hidupku (berbagi pengalaman saja):

Ga pernah-pernahnya maen billyard di kampung halaman. Selalu dulu diejek ga pandai main serta ga “gaul” sebagai anak muda kalau mau nimbrung maen. Maklum, anak miskin yg tahu diri memang begitu. Cuma rumah, mesjid, dan sekolah (apalagi pustaka). Abis itu, udah bantu2 orang tua aja,,ga bawel and ga banyak tingkah. Sadar akan hidup dan kehidupan yg ga hanya hitam putih. Sadar kalau orang tua bukan dari golongan ningrat, cuma rakyat jelata yg berusaha hidup seadanya dan semampunya. Ga ada sekalipun terlintas maen2 games ala anak2 kaya and atau yg gaul2 gitu.. Akhirnya yah,, sering ngalah demi gengsi orang lain..kalau ada yang becanda tapi ga make sense,,jadinya kabur aja, suka males berteman dengan teman yang suka ngejek atau mem-bully temannya sendiri. Itu dulu.., maklum, itu zaman ABG, tapi sampai sekarang, tetap saya ga suka orang pem-bully alias pencemooh alias pancacek alias pencimeeh, meski dibalut dengan becandaan. “Bagarah nyo Said, jan manggok pulo ndak?”.. Ini yg sering saya dengar, tapi dulu.. Meski pada akhirnya, saya sadar, anak pamanggok itu sensitif, bukan berarti kecerdasan emosinya kurang, berlebih malah. Setiap anak manusia pada dasarnya cerdas, tinggal orang tua mendidiknya seperti apa, itulah kuncinya.
Trus….. Eeh,, malah di “sini” main billiard pertama kali langsung sama orang Jepang, orang Morocco, dan orang Amerika. Habis meeting dengan badan mahasiswa internasional kampus, saya iseng2 diajak sama teman2 baru ini.. Awalnya grogi karena ga pandai dan ga pernah sekalipun make stick billiard atau bahkan nyentuh bolanya (maaf ya, bagi yg dah modern, saya masih kampungan). Tapi, karena mereka tulus menjelaskan begini begitunya kalo main dan mereka juga ga sekalipun mengejek atau mencemooh, serta tidak membeda-bedakan teman main, saya jadi merasa bagian dari mereka dan terutama sekali, “pede”. Mereka pada ketawa dan sering ngucap, “That’s good shot!”, ‘Wow, that’s great, Syayid, you will be a great pool player”, atau “That’s nice, just almost get to the hole, you’ll be fine”.. meski bola-nya jarang ada yang masuk di awal-awal maen. Kikuk banget.. Awalnya terasa aneh pujian seperti itu, ngapain juga muji kalo kenyataannya saya ga pandai main..?, tapi pikiran saya, saya ganti channelnya ke menerima pujian tersebut sebagai dorongan semangat (tetap positive thinking). Saya berasumsi bahwa mereka bermaksud mendukung dan mendorong semangat untuk maen. Setelah sejam maen, akhirnya, malah saya yang nyetak skor buat ronde pertama 2-0! Hihihh.. Pede saya pun timbul. Pas mereka mau pake duit, saya baru cabut, takut mendekati judi. Ini-pun mereka ngerti. Saya tetap maen, cuma mereka aja yg pake duit (saya senang dan juga ga dosa). Abis itu, pulang, dan dinner…

Karena Alam Terkembang Jadi Guru, saya belajar sesuatu dari perjalanan hidup ini:

Selalu ada kebaikan dalam diri setiap orang, kita cuma tinggal melihat dan memandangnya dari segi apa.. Kalau selalu jelek yang terlihat oleh kita dari orang lain, berarti kacamata kita yang terlalu minus atau terlalu tebal kacanya… Have a great day 🙂

We could ignore others as a way for us to give them a lesson when we are angry, upset, or the other like. However, do you know something? They never learn anything from that situation. They even forget you while you are busy with yourself. So, if you want to make others learn something, tell the thing that you think as right. Say something and let them know. After that, the case is theirs. Keeping the right thing for yourself will loose your chance to outgrow others and surroundings, even the world. That means, you loose the purpose of why you are on earth. Do you want that happens, dear? ~
(Friday, Feb 24, 2011)

I am so grateful to be able to study in the United States through Fulbright scholarship. I hope that until I am back home later on, my good impression will always remain. And my 2 years experience living in the USA will be a life-long learning experience for me. In the same time, I am also happy to have a warm welcome from the international student officers, faculty and staffs of SIUE, new friends at SIUE and especially, to my host family as well. Thanks Joyce and John. I will never forget the kindness from these people. May God always bless them all. Amen. And, especially to a couple out there, two American people, I miss you. Hope you are doing well in Abu Dhabi. ~

I love these words:

“There will always be people in your life who perhaps cost you too much, who hurts you too many times, who doesn’t see all the good that you’ve done for them, who takes you for granted but they are also perhaps the ones who YOU would give your all, who you would sacrifice anything for, who takes your breath away like nobody else could…. These would be the people who would teach you the best lessons in life, push you to become the best that you can be and the pain you experienced actually make you grow and become stronger.
I feel that if you only just realize WHO exactly walk with you (that is the Almighty) throughout your life’s journey, all that pain, fear, sadness become impossible and you’d see more good than bad in whatever that happens to you.” – Rita Zahara.
Looking at the bright side of everything is the key to happiness – Syayid Sandi Sukandi.

“It is only with one’s heart that one can see clearly. What is essential is invisible to the eye” –
Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, The Little Prince

“I always like to know everything about my new friends, and nothing about my old ones” –
Oscar Wilde

“The price of greatness is responsibility” –
Sir Winston Churchill

“Language is the source of misunderstandings” –
Antoine de Saint-Exupery (1900 – 1944)

“High thoughts must have high language” –
Aristophanes (450 BC – 388 BC), Frogs, 405 B.C.

Thanks for my lovely sister and my best friend Hasnah Azmi. I never feel so blue when someone came to me and teach me as well as say everything bad about me directly to my ears and eyes. It is okay to tell me good things that you think I need to know. I am a learner, not just a student. As you said, learn, learn, and learn. The higher we stand, the strongest the wind hit us from any direction. Somehow, though it was painful to know a secret hatred comes to us; however, that is the most important thing for us to know so that we know where we are and to which direction we will put our mind. Again, thanks for reminding me and for being the special one, sister.. Wish happiness and joy comes to your life. Cheers.. Wish I could go to Australia someday. This song is just for you. Have a great day ~ ^_^ v

“Words kill” ~ Be careful with what you are saying. However, being silent does not mean the best solution to keep friendship. This video is worth watching for you my students. Please stop bullying among you. Love your friends as you love yourself. I had experienced to be the one who was bullied because of being “cupu”, “kuper”, “miskin” and “kampungan”. It feels hurt to be bullied.

Dear father.. At this time when I am growing up to learn how to be a man, how I fancy your styles in educating me as your son. You rarely say much words at home, but you gave real example through your modest actions and attitudes. Kiss and hugs for you, dad. Love you, as always, your son ~

It is cool to have a car. However, when you drive it carelessly, please, don’t blame you car and call it stupid. For you who has a car, please, act like a smart one or this is your risk… Take good care.

I often find people who are easy to call others as “stupid”, “dumb”, or “moron”, mostly because they are ignorant and are thinking that their mindset as the correct one. As long as others could “say” or “think” about something, no matter what their background is, they are not in those categories. Respect others mean respect yourself. Isn’t that simple but full-with-dignity statements for those who consider themselves as “educated” people…? Think.

We never know what people think about us. They may be smile. They may be laugh with us. Sincerely, what matters in the heart is what God sees the most. What we show to others is only for human perception. Think about it. Let our mind, heart, words, and attitude are in balance. Anyway, nobody is perfect and nobody like humiliation in any way. Think.

Setelah saya belajar tentang sejarah negara Amerika Serikat dan membaca perjuangan mereka melawan penjajahan dari Perancis dan negara-negara Eropa, lalu saya melihat ke masa-masa SD, SMP, dan SMA. Alangkah menyedihkannya melihat pelajar yang melecehkan nilai sakral upacara bendera tiap Senin pagi dengan ketawa-ketiwi. Memangnya mudah hidup di zaman perang dan di zaman penindasan? Terima kasih buat Bapak dan Ibu Guru yang mendidik saya dengan disiplin dan penuh rasa khidmat. Berdiri tegak selama upacara bendera adalah hal dasar menilai kualitas kepemimpinan seorang murid. Duh, kangen sama suasana upacara bendera semasa SMA! Tonti, Paskibraka, Pramuka, Rohis, dll…. Kangen!


Indonesia, tanah air beta. Pusaka, abadi nan jaya…
Indonesia, sejak dulu kala.. Tetap dipuja-puja bangsa..
Di sana tempat lahir beta, dibuai, dibesarkan bunda..
Tempat berlindung di hari tua.. Tempat akhir menutup mata…

Lirik ini cukup bagiku untuk tetap mencintai Indonesia, bangsaku – negaraku, dengan segenap tetek bengek-nya. Apapun yang dikatakan bangsa lain tentang Indonesia, Aku Cinta Indonesia!
Banyak hal yang tidak ada di negeri orang, tapi aku temukan di Indonesia. Bukan karena aku lahir di Indonesia, tapi memang Indonesia yang indah dan sederhana. Di sana aku mengenal cinta, kasih sayang, kedamaian, keikhlasan, kejujuran, kuluguan, dan kesahajaan. Sekarang, masih adakah yang membela nama bangsanya? Aku jadi bertanya-tanya dan sesaat, mata ini berkaca-kaca, sembari berdoa.. semoga pemimpin Indonesia bisa mengembalikan kembali Indonesiaku yang indah, damai, dan tenang… Indonesia Bersatu dan Kembalilah! Jaya Seperti Sedia Kala, berjuang demi Kemerdekaan di tahun-tahun penjajahan!

Humanities is the science of dealing with humans and people. Don’t hate people who learn and talk about people. What they studied is called Social Sciences. Those who learn Natural Sciences, will possibly not agree with what Social Scientists stated.
Humaniora adalah ilmu yang berhubungan dengan manusia dan masyarakat. Jangan membenci seseorang yang belajar dan berbicara tentang masyarakat. Ilmu yang dia pelajari disebut Ilmu Pengetahuan Sosial. Yang mempelajari Ilmu Pengetahuan Alam besar kemungkinan tidak setuju dengan apa yang disampaikan oleh Ahli Ilmu Pengetahuan Sosial.

Trust me. None can destroy your life without your consent. Blaming others is such a lame character. The winner is the one who stands straight up facing the challenges come toward him or her, even though he or she should face loneliness and hatred due to multiple lack of stuffs. We are born alone, we will be dead alone anyway. Pressures from life are temporary. You won’t live forever, anyway. Have you prepared facing your own death someday? Are you sure that you will not be asked for what have you done on earth? Who gave you energy to earn money? Where did you go when you were sleeping? Think

Cyberterorism? Now what?
Internet is individual use over technology. Don`t be paranoid. Be free from your own fear. Nothing explode in internet. That is only collection of texts.

Thanks to internet. I know that darkness is real. Ever since I learn psychology, I know that some `arts` are meant to be mentally delusive. Darkness is your own shadow. Once you can play with it, you can see everyone`s darkness. When yiu fed up, of course, take the light. Soon, the darkness will fade away. Play with it. Tame it. You will be fine. – Inspired from Tatu (It`s All About Us)

Women are created with beauty and sweetness. Even from her voice, she is so soft and sweet. Whether boyish or what not, women are still women. There is a soft part in them. This soft side that makes men stupid like donkey (I admit). However, corrupted women always make themselves cheap in front of men. Hey ladies! Stand up! Show your self-esteem and dignity! Be a star in your life! Be the queen in your throne. Men and women are the same. Show to all men that the one that can hold you is the special one. The one that loves you for Allah SWT. And, men! If you love her, marry her. Don’t make yourself the victim of your own desire. Illusion between love and desire is so tiny. May all men who could control their lust over women can get the paradise. Fornication is such indeed a form of psychological transgressor and a big sin. Insya Allah ~
(For my dearest sister, may Allah SWT grows you as a lady of your life with all what your heart wishes)
(To others who disagree, remember, the biggest challenge is to control one’s own body and mind, before controlling others)

Only because you can impress others, does not mean you deserve calling others stupid. You can never fly. You don`t have wings. Be wise, please. Everyone is smart in different ways. And, don`t underestimate yourself for you never know that Allah SWT gives you with hidden and rare potential! Time to unseal the light in you!
Love Islam.
As always. I do ~

What does it mean to be a Muslim in Indonesia?

Masjid Istiqlal in Jakarta - Masjid is the place where all Muslims are doing the five times prayer in a day, Friday prayer, Eid al-Fitri, Eid al-Adha, and other Islāmic activities

Indonesia is a country that has the largest Muslims population in the world. At least, this is what people in the United States know about Indonesia. Why the United States? Because this is one of the most intriguing countries in the world. I can say so because I have never been in this country before. Now, in this post, I would like to share a bit of my perspective of how being a Muslim in Indonesia. The questions that I would like to discuss are mainly concerned on the way Muslims live in Indonesia and how the word “jihad” is viewed in this country. Please also remember that I am an Indonesian; therefore, I am pretty sure about Muslims in Indonesia.

Eid al-Fitri in Masjid Istiqlal - Jakarta

The life of Muslims in Indonesia (general perspective)

Indonesia, as it is known in the world today, is a country where people are dominantly Muslims. Recently, there are some debates about the controversies of life of Muslims, especially in Indonesia. Some people who are not living in this country sometimes have different point of view of viewing the true of the life of Muslims is. In this post, I would like to give a perspective of the life of Muslims in Indonesia in a general point of view.

In Indonesia, Muslims are seen as people who believe in Islam and the one almighty God, that is Allah SWT. They worship Allah SWT as their God and they follow what Allah SWT teaches them through Qur’an, the holly book of Islam. In living their life, Muslims in Indonesia are facing the dynamics between social and spiritual life. In terms of social life, Muslims in Indonesia are gathered together to form brotherhood and sisterhood to protect their country, Indonesia. They also try to carry out the principle of life by performing the action of solidarity among people. If there are people living in other provinces are having natural disasters, they try to help those people by giving them some helps as the way they can. Meanwhile, in the aspect of spiritual life, Muslims in Indonesia view Islam as religion that determines the way they live. If the religion does not teach them to do certain things, they would basically not do those things. For instance, if they are asked to do prayer five times a day and go to Friday prayer once a week, they will follow that. In other words, the lives of Muslims in Indonesia are reflected through their actions in combining the social and spiritual life. For people who are living in non-Muslims countries, this is the case where some problems might occur. Misunderstanding and misconception might occur but along the way, as more people try to learn about Islam and its teachings, the more they could learn that Islam can be implemented to social life.

Because Muslims have two Sexes, that are Men and Women, it is a good idea for you to know Muslim Men and Muslim Women in Indonesia

Muslim Men in Indonesia

Muslim Men in Indonesia

The very basic thing that is considered as a Muslim in Indonesia to do is known as circumcision. This is the action of cutting a part of penis, which is the foreskin of it, in order to follow the order of the prophet Muhammad SAW.. For boys, circumcision is done when the boys are reaching ten to eleven years old, depending on the customs of the regions where the boys are raised. About this circumcision, there are many researchers studying about this thing. One of the benefits of having circumcision is that the men can be avoided from genital diseases due to free-sex, but, free-sex or promiscuity is not allowed in Islam. Therefore, when the boys are growing up to be men, they are asked to get married or doing fasting to control their sexual needs. To be a man in Islam means that you are not allowed drinking alcoholic. It is forbidden as it is said in the Qur’an. Moreover, being a man in Islam means the man should respect and honor parents. Allah SWT teaches through Qur’an that parents are the “door” for Muslims to get into the mercy of Allah SWT. If a man does not follow a good thing to be a Muslim, then, it might be a serious case for him and as a punishment; the man may end up in the hell-fire. The rest of being a man in Islam would be the same as other men in general. However, those basic things should be taken into consideration in viewing what Muslims men are.

Muslim Women in Indonesia

The same case as in Muslim men, circumcision is also done among women but it is done when they are babies. Women are asked to cover themselves by using hijab or burqa because in that way, they are protected through the wilderness of men sexual desires. Women are created in such beautiful ways to attract men as the opposite gender. If the women are wearing dresses as in such almost “naked” outfit, the possibility for her to be “raped” is high. Therefore, Allah SWT asks women to cover themselves by using hijab. If in this way, men are still victimizing her, then, the problem goes to the men because they cannot control their desire and be the slave of their own passion. Muslim Men are trained to do this so that when they “view” women in this way, they would do “istighfar” and try their best to control things that they see about it. Moreover, being Muslim Women in Indonesia means that your rights as women are respected. Recently, there are many job opportunities are opened for women. The forms of the jobs are various depending on their ability and skills. Even one of the presidents of Indonesia is woman, who is Megawati Soekarno Putri. Some ministers in Indonesia are also from women. These show that women are having their balance position in Indonesia together with men. Women are no longer viewed as those who should be in the “kitchen” or “stayed at home” to do domestic things in Indonesia. They have their own ways of life and that makes them having a well-balance of life as a Muslim and as a woman in Indonesia. Nevertheless, the government and the society are still trying to make better condition of life about this matter. Hopefully, their plans and goals in realizing this could be realized as expected by all Indonesian civilians.

The form of happy family in Indonesia

A picture of happy Muslim family in Indonesia

In order to view this topic, note that the meaning of “happiness” would be different among people, depending on where they live. The standard of happiness in Indonesia would be different from the standard of happiness in the United States, the United Kingdom, or in other countries. However, the basic thing is that the members of the family can be united together in religious events or in any social events. The father, mother, and the children are sitting together in their house to celebrate the events. They also have “enough” way of life together that they can share. Apparently, the happiness of a family in Indonesia is the same with other families in the world. They need to educate the children by sending them to school, to fulfill what the members of the family need, and be responsible with the family ties are basic things of happy family in Indonesia.

Unfortunately, though, some news on how Muslims in Indonesia cannot be trusted 100% true because the news are sometimes bias and driven by certain political issues. The best thing you can do to understand Muslims in Indonesia is by visiting Indonesia and see it yourself. But, be careful with what you think because sometimes, what you think can mislead you into subjectivity.



All pictures above are taken from Internet. To those who own the pictures, I credibly say thank you to you. Jazakillah and syukron!

Muslims in America and the world today

In the world


The way Muslim do their prayer everywhere in the world is the same


In America

I don’t know why this young guy is crying but I could feel how he feels. Who is never crying?


How Muslims destroy Atheism by a Professor from Ivy League, the United States


Understand this with your mind, then, see what happens!