February 27, 2024


The Truth must be told no matter what so Justice can live!

About Mahaguru58

In the name of Allah, Most Compassionate, Most Merciful.
Assalamualaikum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh. 
May Peace, Mercy and Blessings of Allah be upon you! 🙂
I am Haji Zainol Abideen. Known online as Mahaguru58.
I was born on a Friday, in the Islamic month of Rabi’ul Awwal, at a prewar house at Perak Road, Penang Island in the year 1378 After Hijrah / CE 1958. Hence my id Mahaguru58. My wife at times, refers to me, as the ‘Mamak yang terlampau!‘ Hehehehe. It means, ‘the overbearing Mamak!’ 😛
Can’t blame her! I am a very passionate man. Full of hope and love for my darling, my family, friends and networks. 
I am an Indian Muslim, who grew up in the last Malay kampong, along the foreshore village of Jalan Kota Giam, East Jelutong, Penang Island. 
The Chinese kampong besides us, is famous for its incense stick manufacturers, and their ‘Cheor Tau Kong’. Their road is named Jalan Tokong Batu. They had these ‘Chinese Opera’ stage theatre going on, every now and then.
I know only the Malay culture. My Quran teachers were, Allahyarhamah Tok Hawa and Tok Achi. They taught the kampong kids, how to read and recite the Al Quran on a voluntary basis. I paid for my Al Quran classes, by doing chores for them.
 I used to carry water from the pipes outside their home, and filled up the large earthen urns, to the brim, before my Quran classes. 
At times, Tok Hawa would reward me, with a slice of ‘ubi sengkuang’ @ turnip, smeared with ‘Sambal Macao’ or a cut of pineapple.
As a kampong kid, I used to go fishing with my best friend, Wan Ali @ Ali Kak Pah. His uncle, had a sampan and we used to go fishing with Pak Pin, an older friend of ours. We caught mostly Ikan Gelama, Sembilang, Grut Grut, Kerapu and the occasional Stuka, a small form of stingray.
Wan Ali and I were, and still are, the best of friends. I built a raft with Wan Ali, using a wooden pallet and I stuffed it up with polyfoam, and boarded it up with plywood. I made a crude rudder, and even hoisted a sail, using some tarpaulin. Our anchor was, two bricks tied up with nylon and attached to a long rope.
We usually spent most of our free time fishing, and at times, even went night fishing. There was a concrete platform, way out at sea, and we used to go fishing there. We brought along some ‘Kopi O Kaw’ in our thermos, and some ‘Biskut Kapal’ @ ‘Biskut Osborne (photo). 
Type of Catfish

It was quite an experience for us, and I remember catching one of the largest ‘Ikan Sembilang’ @ Catfish there. At first, I thought that my line was caught amongst the corals or what, but then when my fishing line went taut and then I felt the struggle, I knew that I had a big one.
I fought with the fish for about 15 minutes, before succeeding in landing it! It had the darkest cat eyes, that I’d ever seen, and I felt the shivers run down my spine, as I fought to release my hook from its cavernous mouth. I still remember that scene to this day. Phew!…
I miss fishing with Ali.  He is wearing the red baju here. Besides me is another good old friend of mine, Abdul Hakim bin Kader Sultan, a teacher. Hakim’s father was a well-known fishmonger at Chowrasta Market, Penang Road. They had the first color television set in our kampong! Fuyoo!



Wan Ali is still enjoying himself, going fishing every now and then as he is now having his own motorized boat. Lucky fella! I have not fished since 2002! 🙁
How times have changed! Today we are all growing old and grey, but those memories will always remain.
This is Wan Ali today with his granddaughter Sofea Raisya
Since retiring from Telekom Malaysia, my best friend has taken up archery as his hobby. The fella is now, our kampong’s Robin Hood! 😛
Here he is posing with his 1st prize after winning an archery competition. 
Wan Ali just shared this photo of my kampong friends who took this historical photograph at the Waterfall Gardens in Penang. A few of them have already passed away. I will update the caption later with their names. Insya Allah.
Ali Fatah (now)
I remember Allahyarham Che Mat Sabor, Nordin, Lan Chandu, Abu, Ali Fatah, Din Korek, Iqbal, Mat Lidi, Man Lembu, Baba Gila and many others. 🙂 

Here I am sitting at the furthermost end corner of what used to be the ‘Kota Giam’ embankment area at my kampong’s foreshore.

The sea used to come right up to here but now after years of reclaiming the land, the seashore is now long gone and replaced with tarred roads. 

Damn Koh Tsu Koon, for his robbing us of our seafront areas! We used to go mudskating using our ‘papan tongkah‘ @ a long surfboard type fabricated mud board. We would have a basket up front to collect the cockles and siput kemudi. Those moments were priceless.

Sure, we would stink a bit from being coated with mud, but the seafront was clean and green back then. 

There were plenty of cockles and ‘siput kemudi’ for us to harvest from those rich, fertile mud banks. 

Siput kemudi

All those are now history thanks to the useless fellow, who was our island’s Chief Minister!!! 

Today, it is toxic and dangerous to our health and devoid of sea life because Koh Tsu Koon decided to turn the Jelutong foreshore into a rubbish disposal area!!! Damn him! 

Back to my story of how a chance run in with my kampong’s Boria troupe made me return home to Penang with them after I had been living in JB for a few months back in 1986.

We who are Malaysians working in Singapore had to leave the island republic after UMNO youth took Singapore to task for having Israeli President Chaim Herzog visit them and as a result, official relations were strained between both our countries.

UMNO wanted to cut off the water supply to Singapore and the Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew did a tit for tat in return. Malaysian workers such as I had to leave the island, el prompto!

Thus, my life story took a turning point. Will share about that someday. 🙂

Wan Ali and myself [1980]
In our prime [1980]
Boria Dakotas
After the Pesta Dendang Rakyat in JB where my kampong’s Boria Team took part. Pemuda DAKOTAS. Dalam Kota Taat Setia! 😀
Here we are posing in the late 80’s style along the spiraling staircase of the Selat Teberau, Johor Bahru observation tower.

At the Selat Teberau Observation Tower stairways in Johor Bahru. I am 4th from the right.
Wan Ali was the one who asked me to return home to Penang. If he had not done that, who knows where I would have ended up? Maybe roaming the world?

I am very fond of my dearest friend. He knows who I was and who I used to be? A tripwire. Easily offended back then and used to get into fights and scrapes as a roaring teenager! Hahahahaha! John Travolta style. 😛


Those were the times before I returned home to Penang from Singapore back in 1986 and got married in 1987.

I started work as a Gold & Diamond Sales Executive with Berkat Jewellers just opposite the historical Masjid Kapitan Keling and after work used to go join the Islamic Knowledge classes conducted by the Chief Imam, Sheikh Haji Abdullah Bukhari Al Hafiz, a learned scholar of Islam in Penang.

Myself when I was working at Sykt.Haji S. Abdul Wahab Jewellers at KOMTAR, Penang

I love my faith of Al Islam to the max and have been involved in Islamic Dakwah since 1987 when I saved a fellow Muslim from being bashed up by those who thought he was getting too big for his breeches by …imagine this…’Calling to Islam!’

You can read about how I got involved in Islamic Dakwah activities here, here and here.

I miss my Dakwah Walkabout’s with my fellow Da’ee’s in Penang. We used to go through the streets of the City of Georgetown, Penang with our brochures and pamphlets sharing info about Islam. We used to meet and greet the tourists and travelers coming from all over the world and invite them to visit our masjid.

Many of them would take us up, on our invitation and turn up the next day at the Masjid Kapitan Keling.

We would invite them in, give them robes to wear and cover their modesty if they were inappropriately attired and take time to first explain about what Islam is and what it is not, answer their numerous questions and if they are serious about learning more, guide them towards knowing about their birthright which is to worship None but Allah the Almighty.

Many of them have embraced Islam through the Guidance of Allah and our minuscule efforts. Alhamdulillah!

Myself in blue jubah and checkered turban, handing out informative leaflets on Islam to a Finnish tourist at Chulia Street, Georgetown, Penang circa 1988.
[Left to right : Haji Yassin,  Haji Kamaruddin Abdullah, Haji Abdurraheem, Haji Zainol Abideen]

A historical photo showing the 3 of us who set up the Islamic Centre at Masjid Kapitan Keling’s minaret building with a visiting Da’ee from England, Brother Haji Abdurraheem.

I am now living in Bandar Tun Razak, a suburb of Kuala Lumpur since 2001 after starting a new life with a new wife in 2002.

I worked in the Gold & Diamonds Jewelry trade, continuing my career in the business which I had worked in Penang.

I then moved on to the General Insurance business and after qualifying in both the General and Life Insurance exams, started my own general insurance agency which after finding the market too saturated with insurance agents everywhere decided to venture into the Canadian Landbanking business.

It was tough, trying to sell Canadian real estate to our Malaysian investors and I managed to sell a couple of acres of land to a single Malaysian investor. Many of the millionaires I approached simply were so just in name and just didn’t have the extra smackeroos to invest in real estate overseas.

Luckily, the investor I had sold the Canadian lands to managed to make a substantial profit in his landbanking and that was that. No other clients because every other person I had approached said they didn’t have the capital needed to invest and the Landbanking Company soon closed shop here and transferred their operations from Malaysia and moved all activities to Singapore where there are wealthier clients.

I started The Muslim Bloggers Alliance with the help of a few likeminded Muslim bloggers in 2008 and have been hosting the site on my own after our webmaster Brother Abdylas Tynyshov who helped start up the site out of his own expenses transferred control over its administration to me as he was busy with his studies.

It is our online Dakwah effort to share useful articles and news about Islam from those who have registered with us. I try my best to keep the site up to date but find it hard to do so as most of those who are registered have been quite busy with their work and life as well. I pay for the domain renewals out of my own pocket and update the site with relevant content as often as I can and when the members have published anything new and worthwhile to be shared.

I was asked to help set up an internet-based IPTV in 2010 and upon successfully setting up the station was appointed as a Communications Director with the said TV station. 

Things soured when a batch of ex Television executives joined the startup station and the new CEO took offense to my being a critical blogger taking the government to task over its shortfalls. I was given an ultimatum. Stop blogging if I wanted to remain there or quit.

I did the latter.

I then started to learn script writing and took part in a couple of workshops organized by FINAS. I learned how to write scripts for Film and Television Drama. I am still researching and studying content for two titles. Namely ‘Dilemma Syaitan’ and ‘Kembara Sufi’. Both based on Islamic Cinema content.

I also learned Script Writing for Documentaries. I aim to produce a documentary on Islamic Knowledge and Malaysia’s Muslims ~ Between Culture and Religious Practices.

In 2011, I was asked if I wanted to be part of the official Media Team covering the Hajj and naturally I accepted. I got to perform my Hajj and cover the pilgrimage at the same time! Alhamdulillah!

I sensed that working on my own was the best thing for me to do and chose to work using my abilities in the field of academic program consulting and writing services.

I am now Self-Employed, working as a Translator, Editor, Proofreader and Script Writer at my own Writing Services at www.readnwrite.net.

This is my acting workshop class. The short stint was about a Mamak, married to a Sabahan, and the husband was calling out to his wife, asking whether she had cooked anything? The wife was saying that the stingy husband had not given money to buy groceries. There was also a drought. Water shortage. Add drama to the whole episode! 😛 Talk about stereotyping the ‘Mamak Kudukut’ lah! 😀

This is the final performance pending our graduation day before FINAS officials. 

I took part in an Acting Workshop at Galeri Perfileman FINAS under the tutelage of renowned Malaysian actor Hilal Azman in May, 2014 and after successfully graduating in that acting workshop have been offered to act as an Archaeologist in ‘The Chini Saga an up and coming mostly CGI film project due to start shooting by December 2014 and scheduled to begin filming in several countries.

Reason for my wanting to enter the Malaysian Creative Film and TV Drama industry is because I want to explore the possibility of carrying out Islamic Dakwah efforts through the cinema and television medium.

Those of us who are in the ‘Calling to Islam‘ efforts as commanded by Allahu Ta’ala in Surah An Nahl Chapter 16 Verse 125:

Sahih International

Invite to the way of your Lord with wisdom and good instruction and argue (discuss / explain) with them in a way that is best. Indeed, your Lord is most knowing of who has strayed from His way, and He is most knowing of who is [rightly] guided.

As I grow older, I need to work in a way that is not too taxing, and I choose this medium of blogging and sharing my views through the internet which is global and reaches those who have access to the worldwide web all over the world.

When I am no longer alive in this world, I hope that my blog here with its more than 3274 blog postings to date will remain as my effort in sharing all that is useful to those seeking to learn more about Islam and other useful information that I have shared here in Mahaguru58.

Insya Allah. Thanks for visiting and do keep coming back!

May Allah bless and guide us all.


Haji Zainol Abideen @ Blogger Mahaguru58.


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