BY: Michelle Liew
As the world of technology continues to grow, young Muhammad Azim Azizan, 24, still believes in the sentimental value of the practice of sending Hari Raya greeting cards by post, which is rarely done by young people these days.
Muhammad Azim said, the practice has been a must for him since childhood because the culture is considered to be able to strengthen the close relationship with each other.
He said, young people prefer to send speeches through social sites such as WhatsApp, Facebook, Twitter, or via short message service (SMS).
According to him, the uniqueness of the Hari Raya greeting card is that it can be kept until the end of life, but the greeting via social media does not last long and will even disappear if it is deleted or the phone is damaged and so on.
For him, sending postcards by post is very classic and has its own aesthetic value.
This age of technology is an advanced era, many use social media such as Facebook and WhatsApp to hurry up in this way.
“We need to continue sending out Raya cards and not just a block it away because this Raya card has been around for generations,” he said.
Muhammad Azim explained that to fulfill his interest, he was willing to spend more than RM300 to buy Hari Raya cards and stamps.
He said he would look for cards at bookstores around Alor Setar and Jitra and buy them.
“When we get the cards, the memories don’t go away,” he said.
Now he has collected more than 1,000 pieces of Hari Raya greeting cards since 2017 when he was still in school.
He said, apart from friends and relatives, he had received greeting cards from dignitaries, government offices and most surprisingly, even from the Sultan of Brunei.
Azim was never discouraged when some of his greeting cards were not answered.
“Envelopes of each state and each person are unique. That is the beautiful part of it. The most beautiful card from abroad is from the Sultan of Brunei.
“The Sultan of Brunei sent a Hari Raya greeting with his own signature with a pen. We can see which is original, which is printed. He sent using a genuine signature,” he said.
Muhammad Azim’s interest was inspired by his father Azizan Haroon, 58, who kept a large collection of greeting cards and sent greeting cards when he was a child.
According to Azizan, he encouraged his son’s interest. He said he started keeping greeting cards when he was young from around the 1970s and at that time the tradition of sending and returning greeting cards was very lively.
“I started collecting and sending these Raya cards because they used to be cheap and used to strengthen the bond of friendship with friends and brothers and sisters.
“I’m also one of the fans of collecting collections like this until now,” he said.