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Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Islam:Between Teresa Kok and Bar Council “Approaches”

I found a report from Teresa Kok that can serve as guidance towards solving tensions of religous nature in Malaysia.

Bar Council says that the recent open forum on “Conversion to Islam” was done with the intention to solve standing problems effecting many new converts to Islam. They claim that they have no other intention but that. And they defended their action for organizing an open forum like so as being a good way towards solving a standing problem.

Allow me to quote another example of the same nature. It is a problem pertinent to the practice of Islam in Malaysia but involving a non Muslim “wakil rakyat”. Her name is
Teresa Kok, a Selangor Exco and MP for Seputih. She wrote in her blog, among others, giving account of how she solved a problem due to loud “azan” in a condominium somewhere in Bandar Tun Razak. I quote the part of the article below:

Kes Aduan Tentang Azan di Kondominium di Bandar Tun Razak
Sebenarnya, pada dua tahun yang lepas, saya pernah menerima aduan daripada penduduk bukan Islam di sebuah pangsapuri di Bandar Tun Razak berkenaan dengan bunyi azan yang terlalu kuat pada awal pagi. Saya terpaksa bercampur tangan dalam isu tersebut kerana ia telah mencetuskan pergaduhan dan permusuhan yang agak serius di antara penduduk bukan Islam dan penduduk beragama Islam. Pada waktu itu, saya minta bantuan daripada pengarah Jawi di Wilayah Persekutuan dan kami pernah mengadakan satu dialog di antara penduduk yang beragama Islam dan bukan Islam di kondominium tersebut secara bersama. Akhirnya, isu di kondominium itu diselesaikan dengan bantuan daripada Pengarah Jawi di Wilayah Persekutuan.
Saya tidak memanggil sidang akhbar ataupun menggalakkan pengadu di kondominium berkenaan untuk membuat apa-apa petisyen, dan pergaduhan di kondominium tersebut diselesaikan secara “low key” sahaja.
Clearly Teresa Kok decided to adopt a “low key” approach. She also involved the help of the responsible authority with regards to Islam, that is Director of JAWI. And in the end the problem was solved and tensions are avoided.
Let’s compared to the Bar Council approach. They decided to organize an open forum to discuss a very sensitive and controversial subject. Tell me, how will that solve problems? Won’t that actually lead to more problems rather than solving the existing ones.

The experience relayed by Teresa Kok above give credence to the solution proposed by Islamic NGO of having a inter-party close door discussion. I share such proposal and I feel it will lead to a practical and workable solution.
I still believe that Bar Council has no intention of finding any form of solution. The open forum was organized to smear and spread doubt about the Shariah system in Malaysia. If they were interested in reaching an amicable solution, they would’ve adopted the ways shown by Teresa Kok above.

At the end of the day, what's important s for all of races and religion in Malaysia to co exists together in peace and harmony. To do that does not mean we have to destroy a specific faith or religion, or even all religion. Like how John Lennon dreamed about.

Tulang Besi

PS Read Zaharuddin A Rahman answer to Raja Petra's article on Tudung here or here


23 comments:

Pirate said...

I have to say I disagree. Malaysians are "Kiasi". We have been told not to discuss things in open forum, afraid it would disrupt harmony. Any time sensitive issue is discussed, someone would mention May 13th. Avoiding real issues has become the DNA of most Malaysians. Instead of finding a solution of a tough issue, questioning intent seems more convenient. It is not correct to judge the bar council's intention by the way it conducts its forum. That is not the point.

tulang titanium said...

tulang besi, i think you must get this into your thick skull.

Nobody is against Islam. What they are against are rigid orthodoxy and repulsive religious nonsense that being preach and promoted by mindless zealot like you and your ilk.

So please be clear that - it is people like you with your narrow, restrictive and repulsive interpretation of Islam that has always been the problem for not only the malays and Malaysia but also humanity collectively.

present arrangement with PAS in PR is the best way to curb religious nonsense and repulsive religious doctrines from being shoved up politically into every malays ass.

It is good to see that the DAP has its way to tame these zealots. Perak would be a very good example.

So please get this - it is okay that if you chose to be a stupid orthodox, but please respect those who choose not to. Why is it so hard for you to understand that simple thing?

sigh...It is just so unbelievable how stupid can one be. well, one can't expect much from a mindless zealot like you.

Tulang Besi said...

tulang titanium says:

"Nobody is against Islam. What they are against are rigid orthodoxy and repulsive religious nonsense that being preach and promoted by mindless zealot like you and your ilk."

Reply: The funny thing is that what is deemed as "orthodox" and "rigid" by liberal muslims always end up with Muslims having to significantly alter their religion.

In short, i am very interested to know how u define these big words?

Tulang Besi said...

tulang titanium says:

"So please get this - it is okay that if you chose to be a stupid orthodox, but please respect those who choose not to. Why is it so hard for you to understand that simple thing?"


REPLY: Maybe it's because your not being orthodox like u involves rejecting Islam altogether.

What I know is that being a Muslim means to submit to clear injunctions in Islam.

These injunctions are very much rejected by your "liberal" school. In short, just to be unorthodox, one is forced to leave Islam.

Tulang Besi said...

T. Titanium says:

"present arrangement with PAS in PR is the best way to curb religious nonsense and repulsive religious doctrines from being shoved up politically into every malays ass."

REPLY: Who decides what is repusive religous doctrines and what is not?

You and your liberal kind? You guys cannot even argue properly on the issue of wearing tudung.

tulang titanium said...

you said; 'The funny thing is that what is deemed as "orthodox" and "rigid" by liberal muslims always end up with Muslims having to significantly alter their religion.'



just look at what you wrote. see what i mean. you are so damn stupid. am not goin to waste my time on such absurdity.

you know tb, it was never about politics but it has always been about breaking the mental chain of restrictive conservatism.

Joseph said...

why must non-muslims tolerate muslims practices? why can't muslims tolerate non-muslims practices?

Understanding is mutual, not unilateral. You can't force others to care for your feelings but you yourself don't care about feelings of others.

pragalath said...

Tulang Besi

An IKIM and JAWI representative was invited for the Conversion to Islam talk. One declined and the other pulled out at the 13th hour.

I guess you were not aware of that. Plus the first session only highlighted familial problems that one would face if one of the spouse converts to Islam

Anonymous said...

Please understand, one of the role of bar council is to scrutinize the laws in the country. They're one of the body to ensure written law doesn't goes into conflict with other laws or the constitution.

Therefore when there are anomalies in the law such as the mix of religions between spouses and their children, they need to be clarify. Bar council chooses to use the forum to get feedbacks and hope those concerns will not get caught unaware of the discussions. It goes the same for other sensitive issues.

Anonymous said...

I enjoy reading ur viewpoints. Please permit me to ask a question, kindly forgive me if you think I "melampaui batasan".

Lets say that you know of a Moslem man who lives in say Australia. His wife, who is a Moslem has decided to convert to another religion, lets say WICCAN or some new age religion. She insists that their children (a boy & a girl) also be converted into her new religion.

The moslem man will then seek legal & religious redress. He will ask for opinions, etc to find his next course of action. He decides to take the case to court, but the Courts state that this is a personal decision, and is beyond the jurisdiction of the court.

What other recourse has this poor Moslem chap got? He has lost his wife, his wife has taken the kids and converted them. Now this chap is a good moslem, as a believer of a Peaceful religion, he does not believe in breaking the law. So to whom can he go to?

Now lets say there are a handful of similar cases, and they ask for help. The local legal association would be the perfect organization to start a series of dialogs between all interested parties.

That's what happened in Malaysia. No one is disputing the right of any person to convert into Islam.
What is being asked is what happens to that person's legal position, especially to the agreements he/she got into before he/she converted?

Do u understand the need for such a meeting?

There were NGO's, and other Moslem authorities there. Unfortunately some people wanted to make political capital out of it, and made many unwarranted claims, which were played up by the MSM who were following their own agenda.

But yes, like what you & several other people stated, that it would have been better to hold it as a closed-door event.

BobSam

kc7 said...

Nampaknya benteng akhir sesudah Ketuanan Melayu runtuh rantah ialah agama. Islam kini telah mula dijadikan alat pelindung. Dari hari ke hari semakin jelas jubah Ketuanan Melayu sedang di corak untuk diIslamkan.

Seorang peguam yang tindakan dan tingkah lakunya bukan saja kurang sopan – menggangu forum sivil - malah lebih mendekati bentuk samseng telah berkata, ‘ Saya orang Islam dahulu dan kemudian baru seorang peguam’. Inilah apa yang saya maksudkan membuat jahat tetapi berselindung di belakang tabir agama.

Ada dua perkara yang sering berlaku dalam situasi sebagini: Pertama: jika ada penganut Islam yang cuba mengeluarkan pandangan yang berbeza maka akan sampailah ‘ scud missile’ yang menuduh si Penganut ini kurang ariff dalam agama. Atau tidak bertauliah untuk bercakap dalam hal agama. Atau tidak tahu bahasa Arab.

Orang yang menuduh ini lupa bahawa setiap detik dan setiap saat si Penganut ini berkomunikasi dengan Yang Maha Esa dalam apa sahaja bahasa. ‘Scud missile’ ini dihadapkan dengan harapan si Penganut ini akan merasa terancam dan tidak lagi berani bersuara.

Mematikan perbincangan pastilah bukan ajaran mana-mana agama.

Kedua: satu ketika dahulu sesiapa yang cuba mengeluarkan pandangan, membuat laporan rasuah, atau penyalah gunaan kuasa yang dianggap ‘anti-Melayu’. Hari ini tema ‘anti-Melayu’ telah di kapankan. Yang bangun dari kubur ‘masih lagi tema anti-Melayu’ tetapi memakai topeng Islam.

Lihat apa yang terjadi kepada laman Malaysia-Today. Ini sebuah laman yang amat popular di Malaysia. Kerajaan telah mengarahkan pihak berwajib menutup laman ini. Alasan yang di berikan ialah laman ini ‘menghina Islam dan Nabi Muhamad’.

Gerombolan United Malays National Organisation tahu dengan menggunakan topeng agama ini penganut Isaam dalam negara ini akan marah. Kemarahan warga ini diharap-harapkan akan ditujukan kepada Malaysia-Today.

Laman web Malaysia-Today tidak menghina agama atau Nabi tetapi membocorkan kepada warga Malaysia tentang segala kerenah dan salah kuasa yang telah dilakukan oleh kerajaan yang di kepalai oleh United Malays National Organisation.

Laman ini terus memaparkan ‘cerita-cerita dalam’ yang tidak ada sangkut paut dengan agama. Malaysia-Today telah melaporkan berita tentang pembunuhan Altantuya, peranan Najib dan Rosmah dalam kes Mongolia, berita rasuah Johari Baharum, peranan samseng China dan berpuluh-puluh berita yang tidak akan dilaporkan oleh media pro- Barisan Nasional.

Islam dan Nabi Muhamad telah digunakan untuk mengolah persetujuan orang ramai agar tidak lagi mempercayai laporan berita Malaysia-Today. Jika warga naik marah diharapkan pengendali laman ini akan ‘diserang’.

Justeru, ini adalah contoh terbaik bagaimana segala kejahatan dan kemungkaran cuba ‘disucikan’ dengan menggunakan agama.

Akhir-akhir ini – sumpah dengan cara Islam - telah dilihat umum sebagai satu alat politik. Penganut yang bukan Islam pastilah hairan melihat ‘cara perundangan Islam’. Malah bukan sahaja mereka hairan tetapi melihat ‘ perundangan Islam’ ini sebagai ‘pembicaraan salah/benar’ yang tidak masuk akal.

Kalau dikaji maka akan kita temui bahawa semua ini adalah tanda-tanda perubahan Ketuanan Melayu yang di war warkan oleh Gerombolan United Malays National Organisation sedang beralih warna untuk dijadikan Ketuanan Islam.

Mungkin dalam masa yang tidak lama maka akan timbul hegemoni Islam dimana apa sahaja yang di anggap musuh politik kepada gerombolan United Malays National Organisation akan dianggap sebagai musuh Islam.

Islam kini bukan lagi sebagai satu ajaran agama tetapi telah di Melayukan dalam konteks Ketuanan Melayu. Islam dalam konteks Melayu cukup kolot. Ini kerana selama 50 tahun fikrah umat Melayu telah dibonsaikan oleh gerombolan United Malays National Organisation.

Umat Melayu telah diperbodoh-bodohkan sehingga ramai diantara mereka tidak lagi memiliki kudrat dan iradat untuk menggunakan akal fikiran. Otak yang bonsai lagi beku ini hanya sanggup menerima apa sahaja tanpa dilihat secara kritikal.

Bonsai akal dan fikiran ini telah merebak bagitu meluas sekali. Hari ini ada yang mengakui diri sebagai ‘alim ulamak’ yang telah meMelayukan Islam berpendapat bahawa agama tidak boleh dikaji dengan pengunaan akal. Lihatlah betapa merosotnya pandangan Islam yang telah di Melayukan.

Mereka ini sengaja melupakan betapa pentingnya ilmu pengetahun yang berasaskan akal fikrah dalam Islam. Tanpa akal fikrah tidak mungkin manusia wujud seperti manusia wujud di hari ini.

Kenapa semua ini berlaku?

Asas semua ini ialah perebutan kuasa politik. Gerombolan United Malays National Organisation selama 50 tahun ini telah memonopoli kuasa politik yang memungkinkan mereka melakukan apa sahaja atas nama Ketuanan Melayu. Kini konsep ‘Ketuanan Melayu ‘ telah dibakul sampahkan oleh umat Melayu sendiri.

Penolakan umat Melayu terhadap Ketuanan Melayu ini amat mengerunkan gerombolan United Malays National Organisation. Maka untuk meneruskan hegemoni kuasa mereka tidak dapat tidak mereka pasti akan bertukar jubah – Jubah Hijau.

Dalam masa yang terdekat pasti akan muncul banyak lagi kes, cerita dan berita dimana agama akan di jadikan benteng dan topeng. Peguam yang berkata ‘ saya orang Islam dahulu sebelum seorang pegum’ - hanyalah kata-kata pembuka tirai.

Yang akan datang nanti adalah kehodohan Islam yang telah di Melayukan. Yang lebih hodoh nanti ialah Ketuanan Melayu yang bertopengkan Islam. (isham)
Posted by Tukar Tiub at 9/06/2008 05:52:00 AM
Labels: agama, islam, Ketuanan Melayu, Nordin Kardi

Anonymous said...

Obviously, I agree with you Tulang Titanium, but, you disgusted with your harse and foul words!Don't throw your hatred onto tulang besi, look how gentleman he is.
Tulang Besi, Although I'm not with your side, you do earn my respect...far lot more that Zul the extremistic kind

Tulang Besi said...

Titanium says:

"just look at what you wrote. see what i mean. you are so damn stupid. am not goin to waste my time on such absurdity.

you know tb, it was never about politics but it has always been about breaking the mental chain of restrictive conservatism."

REPLY: Hmmm mental chain of conservatism.. I wonder what exactly does that mean?

Does it mean we Muslims should give up Shariah? We should give up Al Muamalat etc?

The fact you are unable to be specific shows how much confidence you have in your beliefs.

Get this through your thick skull, there's NOTHING in ISLAM that is based upon "mental chain of restrictive conservatism"

This is merely a figment of your imagination.

Tulang Besi said...

Blogger pragalath said...

Tulang Besi

An IKIM and JAWI representative was invited for the Conversion to Islam talk. One declined and the other pulled out at the 13th hour.

REPLY: Still it doesn't change the fact that it is an open forum when it was supposed to be a closed door session like the method adopted by Teresa Kok.

Anonymous said...

To JOSEPH

I think you are being VERY STUPID and DUMB SENSELESS. PLEASE COUNT THE NUMBER OF CHINESE AND INDIAN TEMPLES + CHURCHES IN MALAYSIA and MAKE COMPARISON WITH THE NUMBER OF MOSQUE ..YOU WILL FIND YOUR ANSWER. IS THIS NOT CONSIDERATE ENOUGH? THEN IT IS YOU PEOPLE WHO SHOULD BE CALLED A RACIST.

NEXT TIME DO PROPER RESEARCH BEFORE OPENING YOUR BIG MOUTH.

aku said...

anon tulis:Tulang Besi, Although I'm not with your side, you do earn my respect...far lot more that Zul the extremistic kind - hmmmm, zul yg mana?

Purple Haze said...

Tulang Besi said

"An IKIM and JAWI representative was invited for the Conversion to Islam talk. One declined and the other pulled out at the 13th hour.

REPLY: Still it doesn't change the fact that it is an open forum when it was supposed to be a closed door session like the method adopted by Teresa Kok."

If there was a solution in that matter, I would like for it to be "open" so that the rest of Malaysia and maybe even the world, can have access to a solution for an issue that will continue to crop up. Why make such issues or solution "closed" ?

Would it not be better if issues like that be discussed or shared openly ? At least there will be better understanding of the issues at hand OR is it that you believe that religous issues should always be "closed" ?

"Closed" discussion won't help to promote mutual understanding and acceptance of the various religions as it will take a lot of resources to meet, research, discuss, etc unless one can obtain precedent solutions from public sources or JAWI /JAKIM itself. But then again, can precedents be applied ?

Malaysia is probably one of the few places in the world where inter-faith dialogue is shunned by the proponents of the main religion of the country. In many developed countries in the world (unfortunately, this excludes most of the Muslim-majority countries), govts are bending backwards to listen to the minority Muslim community. In Malaysia, the sensitivities of the minority are simply made inaudible, not by Islam but by the people who control it in this country.

jem hall said...

purple haze said:
Malaysia is probably one of the few places in the world where inter-faith dialogue is shunned by the proponents of the main religion of the country.

me: IIUM constantly holds inter-faith discussion even debates among many other things they've been doing for so many years. I've been to several other Uni that hold such activities too and i've heard none gets shun or whatever, if not even encouraging it.

I think the serious flaw that Bar council has made was a one-sided discussion in which the subject was in favor to their allies and decided upon without agreement from both sides. If they would have respected Muslims better in terms of the methodology and approach used then things would have turned completely the opposite. But I doubt Bar Council have such intention anyways, echoing what TB has said, they must have been only interested to deny the role of Islam/Syariah in the Civil Laws and incorporates secularism all the way.

Anonymous said...

Hi All,

This in my first comment on this website. I agree about close forum rather than open forum is better. Being "orang timur" we have to accept the fact that we are not like "orang barat" They are very open about anything. Doesn't mean it's good. Just look what happend in the west now. I guess being an orthodox not a bad thing also, every religion has it.

After March election, for the first time, I feel like true Malaysian. I look at other race differently now. I am a Malay muslim, when I look at how Chinese and Indian vote for PAS, Malay vote for DAP, I feel really proud. That show that we can really tolerate and it's really about time we forget about the racial difference between us and live as true Malaysian. Learn to respect each other religion.

The root of all this mess is racial party base being create by United Malayan National Organization, the Malay base party suppose to looks for Malay right, but they use English name for their party, MCA and MIC. They have created all the difference just for their benefit, and dare to talk about racial harmony. It's about time to put all this thing behind us.

Forgive me for my ignorance, because I've really no idea what the bar council forum was all about. But I thing every religion have something to follow. Just like if we want be citizen to any country, there are thing and set of rules to follow. It's not like we can simply change our citizen.
Same thing to religion. For Islam we have thing call "murtad", I am sure different religion has different term for it. Islam doesn't allow the follower to change their faith as when they like to. How do you feel when your wife cheated on you. You said Allah is your God, and know you you believe in Budha. Your said Jessus is your God, and know you you believe in one of Hindu God. I've seen most of this thing happen with marriege, people just simply change their religion because they want to marry somebody without understand the religion they want to convert.

This is the thing all religion have to understand each other. Each respective religion body have to play important role, dialog, forum. But do it in close door just to avoid any provocation. This is what I think.

Purple Haze said...

Jem hall,

Thank you for the information that IIUM has held inter-faith dialogues and perhaps other Unis as well.

You have just verified that Joe Public such as myself, have absolutely no clue that these things exist for the simple reason that they seem to be "closed". Now isn't it better that more people get to know about it so that there is more understanding to be shared ? Kenapa sembunyi saja ?

As for your statement of one-sided Bar Council treatment of the issue (and I am not taking any side on this either), what seems to have been lost on many people is that representatives of IKIM and JAWI were two of the 5 speakers that were scheduled but for they pulled out at the last minute.

Thus, credit should at least be given to the Bar Council that they had encouraged the views and representation of the Muslim leadership but cannot be held responsible if they did not show up. You cannot tembak them for not trying. If they had total disregarded any representation from the Muslim view, then by all means, go ahead and be critical.

Unfortunately, there is misinformation or maybe lack of information that IKIM & JAWI were willing to participate in the "open" forum. And that is the main point - IKIM & JAWI are willing to be open, so let's encourage that instead of harping on these being closed. Surely we are all matured enough to listen to different views and if necessary, agree to disagree (instead of storming legally constituted public gatherings) ?

Purple Haze said...

This issue of Teresa Kok's "close door" approach to a solution to a seemingly sensitive issue is now revealed to be a non-issue or maybe a new issue.

Apparently no such "close door" solution was proferred for the simple reason that she was never even involved. Hence, it appears that there is a cabal circulating misinformation.

While it fortifies my point that an "open" discussion is preferable, which would provide transparency and circumvent such misinformation, it is indeed very sad that there are people out there who will spread lies and create mischief/trouble.

It goes against the tenets of any religion.

Mag M said...

I don't agree with you that the Bar Council is trying to destroy Islam. They want to solve problems but through a different system - open communication. However, the Malaysian public is too narrow minded and sensitive towards issues like this. We, tend not to be open-minded for discussions. I wish we were more matured than that but we are not. So, it would be better to do it closed doors to avoid problems. The Muslims must not think that everyone is against them or their religion coz we are not. Malaysian politicians have a way of twisting the peoples' mind to think of the worst and play racial things up. We, the rakyat, often fall into their trap. Sad, but true.

Mag M said...

Oh, may I also mention that the rakyat, regardless of race, also add to racial problems by being rude, especially online coz no one can see their faces. If everyone will try to be more polite and sensitive in their postings, we can all play a part in cooling down racial problems. I also know when I say something like this,some readers will attack me and call me names. Usually happens to others who say this too in other blogs.

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