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

Saturday, February 28, 2009

First Ban, Then Uplift with Condition, Next is What???

First, the Home Ministry banned The Herald from using the word “Allah” in their Malay publication.

Next, The Herald brought the issue to Court and was granted to leave to apply for Judicial Review.

Then, The Herald filed application for a judicial review against the decision by the Home Ministry to ban the use of the word “Allah” in their Malay publication.
The Decision on the judicial review heard by before High Court Judge, Justice Lau Bee Lan will be delivered on 5/5/2009 .

In the meantime, The Herald ignored the ban from the Home Ministry and continued to use the word “Allah” in their Malay publication pending the disposal of the judicial review.

In response to the above, the Home Ministry issued a stern warning.
The Home Ministry ban The Herald from publishing its Malay publication pending the disposal of the judicial review.

Then, there were a lot of discussion on the issue from various parties. Mine is here and here.

Suddenly it was reported that through the newly gazetted Internal Security Act, The Herald was allowed to use the word “Allah” in their Malay Publication with strict condition to have “For Christians Only” printed on the publication. Sad to say that the gazette was signed by none others than the Home Minister Syed Hamid Albar, the person who used to talk very firmly against the use of the word “Allah” in The Herald Malay publication. This was confirmed by the Home Ministry’s Qur’an Publication Control and Text Division Secretary, Che Din Yusoh.

Then the government was urged to remove the condition.
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I thought the Home Ministry through its Minister Syed Hamid Albar was very firm in their decision to ban the use of the word “Allah” in The Herald Malay publication.

I thought the Home Ministry through its Minister Syed Hamid Albar’s firm stance in the issue will last long, if not perpetual.

I thought the Government would wait for the Court to decide on the outcome of the judicial review.

I WAS WRONG.

I thought for once, I could trust this Syed Hamid Albar.

I WAS WRONG.

I wonder why did the Home Ministry suddenly granted permission for The Herald to use the word “Allah” in its Malay publication. With or without condition, that doesn’t matter.

I wonder if the Home Ministry and especially its Minister Syed Hamid Albar knows the phrase – the more you give the more they ask.

During a training that I attended on Effective Collective Bargaining (it is a negotiation process between employer and the employees union for the purpose to conclude the Collective Agreement), the trainer told the participants to be extra careful in granting the Union what the Union asks for. He told us to know the trick. So during a mock collective bargaining, I was the lead negotiator for the company. One of the items requested by the Union rep was car loan. This car loan has not been in the previous Collective Agreement. So, my team and I had a discussion and finally we agreed to grant them the car loan but we make it almost impossible for them to apply for the car loan. We offered them very low margin and very short repayment term. The reason for doing that was because we wanted to get the buy in for other items. Yes we managed to get their buy in. we were happy and thought that we were smart. After we finished our mock collective bargaining, the trainer told my team that granting the car loan is a big mistake and may cause the company to close business in the future. We asked him, why? He said since the Collective Bargaining is done every three years, granting the Union the car loan (though impossible to get) was just a starting point. In the next round of Collective Bargaining, the union will be asking for an increase in the margin and the repayment period. If the employer refuse, the union can make life difficult for the employer. So, may be the union may not be able to take car loan for the first few years, but once they get what they want, it is the company that is going to suffer. So, he said, when you give the union the car loan, you have just opened the flood gate.

So, does the case here. When Syed Hamid signed the gazette (in allowing The Herald to use the word “Allah”) he has just opened the flood gate and he doesn’t have to wait long, as the next day, many quarters have called for the removal of such condition.

Brainless you, Syed Hamid Albar!!!

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Reduced but Increased. Not Reduced and Increased

They reduce but they increase.
They retract but they give back.
Worst still, they do not reduce but they increase.
The Works Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Zin Mohammed said the increase was minimal and hoped the public understood that the increase was stipulated in the concession agreements that the government had signed.

“The increase was actually due in January last year but we had postponed it until now. This means the government has been paying compensation for 14 months.”

Really? Is it inevitable?

1. I wonder if the concession agreement signed between the toll operators and the government allows the government to abolish the two (2) tolls collection at PJS 2 and Salak Jaya recently.

2. If the agreements do not contain such provision, I wonder on what basis the government made the decision to abolish the toll collection at PJS 2 and Salak Jaya

3. And I wonder if the government’s action in increasing the toll collection at five (5) highways is in compliance with the concession agreements.

4. And I wonder if the concession agreements do not contain provision for abolishment and yet the government went ahead and abolish it, I wonder if the government could avoid the toll collection from increasing despite having such clause to increase it in January 2008.

5. And I wonder if the increase is to absorb the “losses” suffered by the toll operators as a result of the abolishment of toll collection at two (2) toll plazas (this is purely out of my curiosity).

6. And I wonder if the government was sincere in abolishing the toll collection at PJS 2 and Salak Jaya

7. And I wonder if the increase between RM0.10 and RM0.50 is not a burden to the people.

8. And I wonder from which college/university our Works Minister graduated from for making statement No. 7 above.
9. And I will keep on wondering.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Funeral

I went to pay my last respect to someone who passed away. I went straight to the mosque where the body was bathed and clothed before it was prayed.

When I reached the mosque, I extended my condolence to the husband of the deceased and I was told by the husband that his wife body was being clothed, which means it has been bathed. I saw a lot or people in the mosque’s compound as well as in the mosque itself. I went with my non-Muslim friend. So, I thought it would just be appropriate for me to accompany him for a while outside the mosque before I took my ablution and proceeded to the main prayer hall. So, while I was with my friend, he asked me lots of questions about Muslims funeral. So, I explained to him a little bit here and there like the process between the moment the person passed away and until the body is buried. While I was explaining to my friend about the process, I saw people in small groups were talking to each other, some smiled while talking and some even laughed. I did not nee to be next to them to hear them laughing. Frankly I do not know what they were talking about but the fact that they had good laugh, I do not think they were talking about death. People do not laugh about death.

After I finished explaining to my friend, I went to take my ablution and proceeded to the main prayer hall to recite Surah Yaasin for the deceased. While walking to the main prayer hall, I passed by few small groups of people. I could here what they were talking about. They were talking about their business, they were talking about their common issues, which has got nothing to do with death.

That made me wondering…what was the purpose of them being present at the mosque? I thought we go and visit the deceased’s family to “sedekah” Al-Faathihah and recite Surah Yaasin. The least if we do not want to recite Al-Faatihah and Yaasin, in my opinion is to show sympathy and respect by remain silent. Talking to each other and laughing certainly does not show any sympathy to the deceased’s family, what more respect. In fact, that was rude. People should not discuss their common issues, their business or their golf activity while attending a funeral. They have more than ample time to talk about it but certainly not during funeral time.

After all, laughing and talking about worldly affairs in the mosque certainly shows that those people do not respect the mosque.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Between BN and PR? Who is More Trustworthy?

Much has been said about the political crisis in Perak. BN claims that the takeover was legal, as they have got the royal consent from the Sultan of Perak, thus calling the people to respect the choice and decision made by the Sultan of Perak. PR on the other hand, dissatisfied with the decision made by the Sultan of Perak, thus decided to have demonstration on the street last Friday, which many people view it as disrespectful to the Sultan. The act by one guy who lied down on the road to stop the convoy of Raja Nazrin Shah was uncalled for. Then there was Karpal Singh who made a statement that a suit will be filed against Sultan of Perak and the new MB of Perak, which has caused unhappiness to many especially the Malays and in particular the UMNO people (note that UMNO is very selective in this issue as they did not condemn their President, Si Bedol when he insisted to have Idris Jusoh as the MB instead of Ahmad Said).

Let us take a look at the issue rationally and impartially without being clouded by emotion and feelings. Let’s compare apple with apple, then we will be able to see who is more reliable, trustworthy and with integrity.

Treason

Nizar was said to commit treason towards the Sultan of Perak when he refused to give up his MB post. His act in still going to his office and staying in the MB official residence (Nizar has later agreed to vacate the official residence) serve as proof.

Now, when the Terengganu Palace wanted Ahmad Said as the new MB, the untouchable President of UMNO wanted his own candidate, the then incumbent Idris Jusoh. As much as the Palace insisted in having Ahmad Said as the new MB, the UMNO President was hesitated to accept him and adamant to have Idris Jusoh instead. Ahmad Said was threatened with possibility of facing disciplinary action within UMNO for going against the wish of UMNO President. Only after much hesitation the UMNO President agreed with the Palace’s choice of Mohd Said as the new MB.

So, if Nizar is said to have committed treason, what about Abdullah, the untouchable UMNO President? Do you see any difference in the case of Nizar as compared to Abdullah? They are alike.

Frogging Activities

I am totally and without any hesitation condemning any act of party hopping regardless of the political party involve. It is just unethical though legal. I am supporting to have the law of party hopping but I wonder why our politician especially the government refused to have such a law.

Our politicians must understand that majority of the voters vote the party instead of the candidate. Like in my case. I do not know the background of the candidates contesting in my area but I have to vote anyway. So, if I can’t judge the candidate, I will have to judge the party. So, my vote goes to the party and not the candidate.

Now, when the candidate jump ship and hopping to another party, do not you think that he/she has betrayed the trust majority of voters put in him/her? Do not you think that if he/she had contested under the banner of his/her new party that he/she hopped into during the election, he/she may have lost the election?

From another aspect, when candidates contest in any election, they are being supported morally and financially by their party. Now, is it fair to the party if after investing so much resources to their candidates only to have their candidates hop to another party?

So, party hopping, no matter from any angle you look at it, is not ethical and not acceptable. Even Abdullah said that party hoppers have no integrity (wonder why now he accepted the 3 independent friendly assemblymen and accepting back the Bota Assemblyman).

Anwar Ibrahim made a big huha about taking over the federal government from BN through MPs crossover (the nicer word for party hopping). It did not materialize. BN leaders condemn like hell the initiative made by Anwar. I disagree with Anwar. The it happened in Perak when the shameless and the “no-pride” BN assemblyman from Bota hopped to PKR citing loss of confidence in BN leadership as his cause. About 10 days later, that very same guy switched back to UMNO and at the same time, 2 PKR and 1 DAP assemblymen chose to become a “friendly independent” assemblymen to BN. So, while BN leaders condemned Anwar for resorting to party hopping vis-à-vis the 16th September date, they do the same. The fact that Anwar initiated the party hopping does not justify the BN to follow suit. The 3 “independent friendly” assemblymen to BN, in my opinion are now taking a break at R&R before proceeding with their journey to their destination (BN). It is just a matter of time for them to join BN. Don’t believe me? Then are you going to believe those politicians?

Majority Support

While BN now has the majority support after taking into consideration of the 3 “friendly independent” assemblymen, the issue that is still not clearly answered is whether the BN has the majority support of the people in Perak? The fact that they have got enough support to be able to topple the PR government in Perak, does not in any way whatsoever indicates that they too have the majority support of the Perakians. So, if we were to look back at the principle of democracy that BN has been barking all these while, is this democracy?

PR Government

They have Nizar as the MB and another Pas assemblyman as an EXCO being in charge of Islamic affairs. Apart from these 2, they also have the 2 PKR assemblymen who has chosen to become “independent friendly” to BN (note that 1 of them was a postman). Other than these 4 assemblymen, the rest in the team were non-Malays and the majority was actually from the DAP. So, do you think Nizar has control over his line of EXCO? Please remember that the DAP wanted their own MB, as they have the most seat among the PR component party. They even, at one time wanted to boycott the swearing in of Nizar as the new MB. So, though Perak had Nizar as the MB, I strongly believe that the government was being controlled by the DAP. Remember about the new village in Grik? Does not that tell you of anything?

So, now, the wisdom behind the decision made by the Sultan of Perak not to dissolve the State Assembly to give way for fresh election should be viewed by the Malays, regardless of their political party in a more broad way for the benefit of the Malays. Look here. If the State Assembly was being dissolved. A fresh election were to be called. Considering the current political situation, who do you think will win the election? Obviously the PR. So, it will go back to status quo where the Perak people will have a government that is being controlled by DAP though they may have a Malay MB from either PAS or PKR. As such, if we look from this angle (benefit of the Malays), we should now start to appreciate what Sultan Azlan Shah has done. After all, he is a brilliant Sultan and was out former Lord President. Do you still think that he made decision without thinking the consequences? I don’t think so.

Disrespect the Sultan

So many police reports were lodged against Karpal for making a statement that the Sultan of Perak can be sued in his official capacity. Karpal is said to have shown his disrespect towards the Sultan. There was also called by several parties for Karpal to be banned from entering Perak.

Now, let us take a look what happened shortly after the 12th General Election. As I said earlier, Abdullah couldn’t accept the fact that the Terengganu Palace had its own candidate for MB post as opposed to Abdullah’s own choice. And as I said earlier, to certain extent, Abdullah had shown his disagreement with the Terengganu Palace over the latter’s choice of MB. There were also police reports lodged against Abdullah for treason. Now, why was it no one requested the Terengganu Palace to ban Abdullah from entering Terengganu? What difference was it between Karpal’s case and Abdullah’s case. To me, none. So, so much so that people think that Karpal has disrespected the Sultan of Perak, so did Abdullah towards the Sultan of Terengganu.

As I said in my previous posting, if we do not know how to respect our parents, do not expect others to respect them.

Protest against the Sultan

There was really massive street demonstration in Kuala Kangsar in front of the Palace opposing the Sultan’s decision to hand over the state government to BN. The protesters were said to be the opposition supporters from PR. However, if you watched the news in TV on the protest (where 1 guy lied down on the road to block the convoy of Raja Dr. Nazrin Shah), can you see any Chinese or DAP supporters. I do not recall seeing any. What I remember seeing was PAS and PKR supporters marching and said “lailahaillallah” and “Allahu Akbar”. So, who is the stupidest among the PR component party and who is the most brilliant one? DAP was smart enough not to be involved in the street demonstration and left it to PAS and PKR (the specialists in street demo). At least, for that, it was PAS and PKR (I mean the Malays) who were being rude to the Sultan and not DAP (non-Malays).

So, now who is more reliable? BN or PR? To me both are not reliable. Both have made politics dirty and both are dirty people. Sometimes we hear people said, “if you can’t choose the better one, choose the one that is less evil”. However, in this case, both parties are equally evil. So, which party are we supposed to choose. Easy question but hard to answer.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Frogging Activities in Perak


What is happening in Perak at the moment is very embarrassing. The whole world is watching and laughing at us. While most countries are fighting and planning to revive their economic, our leaders are busy fighting to form government through legal but immoral way. Thanks to all the “frogs” that are jumping from one side and stop at the R&R before reaching their destination and many thanks to the “King of Frogs” who has been actively frogging lately jumping from UMNO to PKR and back to UMNO. Thick skin!!! Any “stimulus package” involved? Of course the parties involved will deny the existence of the “stimulus package” but do the people in majority believe that these party hoppers do the jumping for the sake of the people and not for the RM? Come on!!!

By now, we know that it is now up to the Sultan of Perak to decide whether to dissolve the State Assembly, thus fresh election or to let the BN takes over from PR as the new government. The fate of the Perak government lies in the hand of the Sultan. Let us not touch about what the Sultan is supposed or not supposed to do. It can be very sensitive.

However, let us look from ordinary people’s point of view of whether or not BN should just take over the government from PR or should a fresh election be called. To answer this issue, we need to answer the following question first i.e. under the democracy system, who should decide who should become the government? The answer is THE PEOPLE, THE VOTERS. If majority of the people voted for Party A, then Party A will become the government. It is as simple as that. Now that BN wanted to form the new government in Perak, has they got the majority support from the people of Perak, the voters? The fact that they have got the required number of the Assemblymen/women to form the new government DOES NOT AT ALL show that they have got the support of the majority of the people/voters of Perak.

Many people blame Anwar Ibrahim for the frogging trend but to me, he may have started it but that does not justify the BN to follow suit. 2 wrongs do not make 1 right. The end does not justify the means.

Anwar was condemned like hell by many BN leaders when he wanted to form the new Malaysian government by the infamous date of 16/9/2008 through frogging exercise. I just do not see why the BN leaders should keep quiet this time around when Najib do the same like what Anwar planned to do. Wonder why? Let me tell you…the BN leaders have got no “ball” (or in Malay, we call it “tak dak telur) to speak up against Najib, who is going to be the PM of Malaysia is less than 2 months time.

So, in conclusion, if BN really follow the spirit of democracy as what they have been yelling and barking all these while, they should have the courage to opt for a fresh election in Perak and let the voters decide who will be the next government of Perak.

2 reasons that I can think of, why BN wanted to avoid fresh election: -

They have lost the Permatang Pauh (expected) and Kuala Terengganu (not expected) by election recently; and

UMNO leaders will be busy with their own internal party election in March, which is more important as compared to the election in Perak. If a fresh election is to be called, it must be held within 60 days from the dissolution of the Perak State Assembly, which should be held latest in April 2009. Too close to the UMNO election right? Bearing in mind, the UMNO election is about themselves and the Perak election is about the people. So, which election do you think they will give priority? LU PIKIRLAH SENDIRI (think for yourselves).

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Rukun Wilayah Anyone???

“Maka kami rakyat Wilayah…” or should we say it, “Maka kami rakyat Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur, Labuan dan Putrajaya…”? You don’t get it? Read here.
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The outgoing Prime Minister, Si Bedol has proposed that the Federal Territories should have its own tenets similar to Rukun Negara and it will be known as Rukun Wilayah. I wonder what other craps this old man is going to do before he leaves office. Can't he just leave without making all these craps?!!
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The old man called on the Federal Territories Ministry to work on the tenets as soon as possible. How soon? Before March 2009?
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This is why the old man thinks that the FT should have it own Rukun Wilayah - is envisaged as a set of principles for the people in the three Federal Territories to hold on to and remember their city, be proud of it, and to make it a better place for everyone.
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“The successful development of the Federal Territories lies in the efforts of the people who live in the cities, and they should carry out tasks and services with a concern for high quality delivery,”.
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That is for the FTs and what about other states?
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Does not that old man thinks that people in Melaka, Kelantan, Selangor, Kedah, Negeri Sembilan, Sabah, Sarawak, Perlis, Perak, Pulau Pinang, Johor, Terengganu and Pahang also need a set of principles for the people to hold on to and remember their states, be proud of it, and to make it a better place for everyone just like the people in the FT?
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Does not the old man think that the successful development of each state lies in the efforts of the people who live in the state just like the people in the FT?
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Does not the old man think that the people at each state should carry out tasks and services with a concern for high quality delivery just like the people in the FT?
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We already have Rukun Negara. Why do we need Rukun Wilayah? If we need Rukun Wilayah, we also need Rukun Negeri.
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Crap!!!
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To Si Bedol,
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if you want people to remember you after your retirement, then you will get it. People will remember you but not for the reason that you wanted but for some other reasons.

Can the Word "Allah" be Translated? - Part 2

I thought of writing this as a reply to the comments that I received on my posting entitled “Can the Word Allah be translated?”. However, I think it is better for me to post it as a new article as a continuation of the earlier posting as mentioned above.
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Readers may go to the earlier posting to read the comments from other readers.
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I have written an email to the editor of the Herald, Lawrence Andrew SJ asking him few questions and he had responded accordingly, which is appended below.
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It is obvious that the Herald only use the word “Allah” to denote “God” in their Malay publication. They do not use the word “Allah” in their English, Tamil or Chinese publication.
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So, it is obvious and safe to say that in this case, the Herald uses the word “Allah” in their Malay publication not on the basis that they believe in the story of Prophet Adam, Prophet Ibrahim, Prophet Musa and all other Prophets but they do so just because they claimed that the translation for the word “God” in Malay is Allah. If they really do believe in Allah and all those Prophets, they should also use the word “Allah” in their English, Tamil and Chinese publication.
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I do not have the dictionary as mentioned by the Herald Editor, so I am not really in a position to comment on that. However, since my primary 1, I was taught that the word “God” in Malay in “Tuhan” and never that I was taught that the word God” in Malay is “Allah”.
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Arah,
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I do not really understand the co-relation between the Qur’anic verses (Al-ankabuut:46 and Ali-imran:64) and the ban by the Malaysian Government on the Herald from using the word “Allah” in their Malay publication.
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In both verses, Allah mentioned ahlul kitab and not the non-Muslims. Who is ahlul kitab? Ahlul kitab is those Jews and Nasrani that lived during the Prophet Muhammad pbuh time and hold firmly on the teaching of the original Injil and Taurat and their descendants who also hold firmly on the teaching of the original Injil and Taurat. So, I do not see the relevance of the 2 verses that you mentioned with the current issue unless you consider the Christians as ahlul kitab, which should not be the case.
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Here are the Qur'anic verses mentioned by Arah: -
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All the Prophets and the Messengers of Allah including Prophet Muhammad were sent by Allah to the people to teach them about Islam and the oneness of Allah. So, I can safely say that the word “Allah” belongs only to Muslims and non-others. The fact that there are Christians and Jews who believe in other Prophets than Prophet Muhammad does not make them a Muslim, hence using the word "Allah".
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The fact that the Christians or non-Muslims in Arab countries use the word “Allah” does not tell anything. It does not make a wrong to become right. “Allah” does not belong to the Arabs. It belongs to Islam.
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This is the email from the editor of the Herald to me. The red denotes my questions and the green denotes the answers from the Editor. The contents of the email shall only be used as a reference in this discussion and shall not be used by any party for any of the purpose other than as mentioned herein: -
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From: Lawrence Andrew SJ editor@herald.com.my
Date: Thu, Jan 22, 2009 at 3:01 PM
Subject: Herald - resendingTo: Rozaimi Mohd Said msrozaimi@gmail.com
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Dear Mr Rozaimi,
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Thank you for your e-mail. I will quickly respond to your questions. I noticed some words were repeated. So I am resending this. Thanks and sorry for the untidiness, LA
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When the publication uses the word "Allah" as a translation to "God", who are you referring to? Are you referring to Jesus?
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We are not translating. We are writing in Malay. The word for God in Malay has been for centuries ALLAH. In our prayers in Malay we use the word ALLAH to refer to God and this has been so for centuries. Look at the Malay dictionaries of the past and you will easily notice that the word for God in Malay is ALLAH.
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We normally say TUHAN Yesus Kristus.
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Apart from the fact that Munshi Abdullah, in translating the Bible into Malay language more than 100 years ago using the word Allah for God, do you have any other reasons for not using the word "TUHAN", which is the most accurate and direct translation for the word "God" in Malay instead of "Allah"?
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Even before Munshi Abdullah we have been using the word ALLAH to refer to God. We have a MALAY-LATIN Dictionary, even before Malaysia had a dictionary and the word ALLAH is Deus (in Latin and its English meaning is GOD). This Dictionary was printed in 1631.
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In our Holy Book Al-Kitab the word Tuhan denotes LORD. So when we say Lord God, we use the words TUHAN ALLAH.
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The current problem is politically motivated. Check the earlier Malay Dictionaries. Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka began to shift the meaning unilaterally some time in the early 1980's. Check for the meaning of ALLAH in Kamus Umum (Indonesia).
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I have lived in Indonesia for four years. The citizens of Indonesia, both Muslims and Christians, use the word ALLAH for God.
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Do you use the word "Allah" in your English or Chinese or Tamil publication?
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We do not use the word ALLAH in English, Chinese or Tamil sections of HERALD. For your information the Al Koran in English uses the word GOD for Allah.
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I hope this has answered your questions.
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With every good wish and God's blessings,
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Yours sincerely,
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Lawrence Andrew, SJ