Wednesday, June 27, 2012

The Kusu legend

Cerita bahasa inggris - The Kusu legend
(Favourite stories from Singapore)
Over a hundred and fifty years ago there lived in the village which is now Singapore, two holy men. One was an Arab named Dato Syeh Rahman, and the other was a Chinese named Yam.
These holy men spent most of their time praying and fasting. But soon they found the village too noisy. And so one day Yam said to his friend. “Syed, there is an island near here where we could go for some peace and quite.”
“That’s a wonderful idea” said Syed. “But how do we go there?”
“That’s easy. We hire a boat,” said Yam, and that is what they did. Their boat was very simple, and they took nothing to eat or drink.
God took Yam and Syed Rahman to the island safely and when they got there, they each went a different way to pray and fast. Yam walked up the hill, and Syed stayed near the sea.
For two days, the man prayed without having anything to eat and drink. Then Yam began to feel sick. At first he tried to hide his illness from his friend, but soon his throat began to feel as if it were on fire, and his lips grew dry and cracked. Yam went to where his friend was praying.
“Syed,” he called. “Syed.”
“Yam,” said Syed. “You look weak.” He felt his friend’s forehead. “Why, you are burning up with fever.”
Syed made a place for Yam to rest, and while Yam slept, he prayed, after praying for some time. Syed shook him by the soldier.
“Wake up, Yam.” He said, “Wake to the boat now. I think you’ll find all you need there.”
Yam walked to the boat, and when he got there he found food and a jar of cool fresh water. He ate and drank, then went back to Syed and told him what happened.
“God is merciful,” said Syed. “Now we must go on with our prayers.”
Yam went back to the hill-top while Syed stayed by the sea. They prayed and fasted for several more days before returning to their homes.
After that, the two holy men often went to the island to pray. And many years later first one. And then the other, died on the island. Syed Rahman’s mother, Cik Galib, and his siter, Cik Sharfah Fatimah, were both very religious women, and when they died, their bodies were also brought to the island and buried there. Later, a Chinese temple for Tuah Peh Kong, the God of Prosperity, was built on this same island.
Today, thousands of people visit Kusu Island each year. The come to honour the two holy men, Yam and Dato Syed Rahman, who first went there.

Source: Favourite stories  from Singapore by Irene-Anne Monteiro and Jenny Watson

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