It is About Sharing

Knowledge is for sharing. Do not keep your knowledge to yourself alone. Let it grows. The more you share, the more you learn and in the end you become a better person.

Surah Yaasin Amazing Recitation

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Al-Fatihah

Friday, December 26, 2008

Silent is the Better Option

The Prophet pbuh said in his hadith: “Man kaana yu’minu billahi wal yaumil aakhir falyaqul khairan au liyasmut: which means, “those among you who believe in Allah and the day of hereafter, they need to say good things or they just need to keep quiet”.

Nowadays, there are a lot of people who like to talk and discuss openly on the subject matter that they are not really familiar with and I am referring herein to Islam.

It is very scary to read articles or postings by those who are not familiar with Islamic subject matter as these people tend to liberalise Islam according to their own understanding. Sometimes they talk nonsense when they talk about Islam. This is simply because they do not have in depth knowledge on the subject matter. The subject matter here refers to the method a fatwa is reached at and not the yoga.

All these happen because they fail to see yoga from Islamic point of view and what they did was to see the fatwa from yoga point of view. What I mean here is if they look at yoga from Islamic point of view, they will find elements in yoga that may cause syirik and pluralism i.e. to associate Allah with something. However, when they look at the fatwa from yoga point of view, they will find that yoga is a just a form of exercise which may be good to our body and boost our spirit and Islam does promote healthy life style. So, there is nothing wrong with yoga and everything is wrong with the fatwa. But one thing they may forget or tend to forget is that the end does not justify the means.

So, my advice is if you do not familiar with Islamic subject matter, it is best for you to keep quiet and keep your mouth shut.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Is UMNO Supreme than Islam?

2 days ago, the UMNO Supreme Council decided to sack Zaid Ibrahim from UMNO after the latter was found to have attended various oppositions' functions held recently. It was reported that: -

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“Umno Information Chief Tan Sri Muhammad Muhammad Taib said the supreme council’s decision was unanimous as every member agreed Zaid’s transgression was too serious to be forgiven.”

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Muhammad Taib was also quoted as saying “Furthermore, it was obvious that he had wanted us to act against him. Otherwise, why would he have kept attending opposition parties’ functions while at the same time claiming to be an Umno member?” And he further stated that “By being seen with opposition leaders not just once, but many times in the course of a very short time, he was daring us to take action. It also looks like he was supporting their cause and that is unforgivable”.

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http://thestar.com.my/news/story.asp?file=/2008/12/4/nation/2719228&sec=nation

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I don’t care with what is happening in UMNO, as to me, the way our politicians are playing politic makes it dirty. I don’t care who get sacked from UMNO but I find the reason for UMNO’s Supreme Council’s decision in sacking Zaid Ibrahim to be contradicting with their stance about inter-religious relationship vis-a-vis "kongsi raya".

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Zaid Ibrahim was sacked for attending the oppositions’ functions and by physically being present, the UMNO Supreme Council was of the opinion that Zaid was supporting the oppositions’ cause. So, to UMNO Supreme Council, what matter was Zaid’s presence at the functions and not his reason for being presence.

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However, if we take a look at the issue of “Kongsi Raya” where we have joint celebration between Aidilfitri and Deepavali, the Mufti of Perak, SS Datuk Seri Harussani Zakaria requested the government to review the “kongsi raya” concept as it is said to be against the Islamic teaching, However, the government especially the UMNO flers did not agree as they said that the celebration of “kongsi raya” was just a matter of social gathering without any worshipping elements.

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http://www.agendadaily.com/cms/content.jsp?id=com.tms.cms.article.Article_cf43139d-3132372e-fe30af00-6c0f1de3

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So, when the Muslims celebrate other religions’ festivals, the UMNO flers said it is ok because it is done in the name of social gathering and multi racial harmony and that does not affect the Muslims' faith, but when their members were seen to be at the oppositions’ functions, why can’t they just take it as a social gathering? Why must they look at it seriously and from different angle as having supporting their cause”? Why can’t they look at the issue of Muslims celebrating Aidilfitri with other festivals such as Deepavali as supporting Hindu?

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So, in a nutshell and indirectly, the UMNO flers are saying that in one sense UMNO is supreme than Islam. While UMNO can tolerate in putting the holy Aidilfitri at the same level with other religions’ festival, they can’t just do the same when it comes to their own party.

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Now, why do I support the stance taken by the Mufti of Perak regarding the “kongsi raya” concept? Allow me to explain.

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In Islam, Muslims are taught that there is no God but Allah and the Propohet Muhammad is his Messenger. As such, whoever worships anything but Allah will go to hell in the hereafter. As Muslims, we are also thought that Islam is a divine religion whose teaching came through divine revelation from Allah through His angle, Jibril. As such, in that sense, Islam should be put at the highest level as compared to other religion. This is what we as Muslims should do. Put Islam in the highest and noble place in our life. As the Prophet said in his hadith, “Islam ya’lu wa la yu’la ‘alaihi” which means “Islam is high and there is nothing (religion) higher than it (Islam).

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Now, let me talk about festival. Each religion has its own festival. The Hindus celebrate Deepavali, the Christians celebrate Christmas and the Muslims celebrate Aidilfitri and Aidiladha, so do other religions. Why do we need festival? What is its significance in the eyes of the respective religion? Religious festival is the time the people of each religion celebrate their victory.

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While Aidilfitri marks the victory of the Muslims for fasting during the whole month of Ramadhan and Aidiladha marks the event where Allah instructed Prophet Ibrahim to slaughter his son but later replaced with an animal called “qibas”, Christmas is celebrated to mark the birthday of Jesus and Deepavali is celebrated to mark the homecoming of Lord Ram after a 14-year exile in the forest and his victory over the evil demon-king Ravana. So, when we celebrate (in the true meaning of celebration) other religions’ festivals, we as Muslims are in deed celebrating their victory moment and by doing so, we are supporting their cause. So, when we have joint celebration or “kongsi raya” between Aidilfitri and festivals of other religions, we are actually putting Islam in the same level as the other religion. As an analogy, will we joint the birthday of the King or the PM for that matter with that of the poor or the commoner? The answer is strictly no (though it is not wrong for doing so) because the King or the PM is higher in ranking as compared to the commoner. So, the same treatment should be given to Islam. Celebration of religious festivals is not a mere celebration. It involve the ritual ceremony and more importantly we are said to be supporting their cause vis-à-vis their victory moment.

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What is the danger of having this “kongsi raya concept”?

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To me, we just need to open the floodgate and expect the disaster to happen later. It will happen and it is just a matter of time. First, we started with the concept of “kongsi raya”, which according to the UMNO flers is a mere social gathering, so nothing wrong. The Muslims’ faith will not erode by merely “celebrating” Aidilfitri with other religions’ festival. However, once we started to have the joint celebration, people tend to go further and do more. That is the human nature. The more you give, the more they ask. As the Malay proverb says, “Bagi betis nak peha”. I have seen a lot of Muslims who wore the Santa Claus outfit during Christmas and the Muslims who have a “nandek” on their forehead during Deepavali. To them there is nothing wrong because it was done in the name of racial harmony. Like it or not, all those are factors that may later erode our faith conciously or unconciously because by doing so, the Muslims are actually and really celebrating other religion’s/races’ festival and supporting their cause.

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While Islam does not allow Muslims to celebrate (the real celebration with ritual ceremony or a sign to support their cause) the festivals of other religions, it is permissible for Muslims to visit their non-Muslim neighbours during their religious festivals in the name of neighbourhood spirit provided that they do not engage in any ritual ceremony or any act that support their cause.

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The bottom line is, it is very important to draw the line very clearly between the do’s and the don’ts for Muslims as far as the inter-religious relationship is concerned but sad to say that our leaders do not bother about all these, not even the Imam Hadhari, and yet they allow it to happen all in the name of social harmony and social gathering. If nothing is done now, do not be surprise if in the future or perhaps in the near future, there are Muslims who do the hand movement on their chest to indicate the crusade as the Christians always do and put on the chain with crusade object without any guilt feeling. They may take it as a fashion or something like that.

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Allah said in the Qur’an, “Wa lan tardha ankal yaudu wa lan nasara hatta tattabi’a millatahum” which means “the Jews and Nasara will not give up until you (Muslims) follow their path”.

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Ya Allah…please save the Muslims and Islam.