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1000 Dinar


KL, November 28, 2013

He’s a 27-year-old Malay guy with a shy-looking face and smiling eyes. As he took on the mission to drive me to KL International airport today, little did he know that he would soon face with the toughest questions in his life….

“What does 1000 Dinar mean?” I ask while pointing at the brass-looking medallion dangling from the mirror. Apart from the word 1000 Dinar that I could recognize, the rest are in arabic.

“I don’t know exactly the translation of the arabic words but basically this is to give happiness, health, and safety on the road” said the guy with a shy smile.

“Did you get it from a temple?”

“No I bought it a while ago”

“What about these beads?”

“Oh my friend gave this string to me. I use it every time I pray.”

“So how many times do you pray per day?”

“5 times”


“Uh, sometimes not when I am busy.” Fleeting guilt was spotted.

“So what do you do when you pray?”

“I ask for forgiveness of all my sins”

“What’s your biggest sin ever?”

Shocked by a direct question, he gave a nervous laugh and said that he would not be able to tell me who he only got to know for the last 24 hours.

“Only my best friends know.”

“Fair enough!”

“So what about you? What’s your biggest sin?”, asked he in a counter-attack manner.

” Well, I ran away from home when I was 16 and broke my mother’s heart.” The guy was kinda caught by surprise to seeing it flowing out of my mouth.

“So I guess you’ve never confessed your biggest sin to God before?”

“No, not yet.”

“How come?”

Nervous laugh again. Silence fell as he tried to look through the blurry car shield kept alive by the non-stopping water handles trying to sweep away the heavy raindrops and probably the windmill of his mind….

“You know why it is easy for me to tell anyone about my sins?”


“Once I know I’ve made a mistake, I accept it and go and change it. That way, it’s become a lesson and no longer a sin.”

“True”, said the guy in contemplation.

“Don’t try and commit it again though!”

Laughters filled the air as we approached the airport….

“Can I tell you about my biggest sin?”, asked he all of a sudden as I was was getting ready to be dropped off.”

I stopped, and looked at him.

“Sure, only if you are ready!”

“I slept with a few girls before”

“Is that all? That’s pretty normal for a 27-year old single guy right?”

“Yeah but it’s prohibited in Islamic law”

” I see. I’m sure God will forgive you for that, unless you sleep with someone while having a relationship with another.”

“It’s called double sin and yes I have committed it.


We said goodbye as “purple rain” came out from the car stereo, seemingly poking through the grey & thick curtain of a melancholic KL evening.

“Don’t forget to pray and confess tonight”

“I sure will”

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