Monday, November 24, 2008

Yoga ban fatwa - on hold in Perak and Selangor

The fatwa banning yoga by the National Fatwa Council has been put on hold in Selangor and Perak. The Sultan of Selangor has ordered the ruling to be put on hold saying the state fatwa committee has made no decision on the issue. The Tuanku also said he wanted the edict to be deliberated in greater detail and not made hastily, according to The Star Online.

Meanwhile, Perak Religious Department director Datuk Jamry Sury, who said Muslims in Perak, would be barred from practising yoga on Sunday, has withdrew his statement. He has said that the Sultan of Perak has told him that the matter is out of his jurisdiction. In short - Jamry has jumped the gun and that he has no authority to decide, MStar reported. It looks like the royal palaces of Selangor and Perak have decided to step in.

Malacca Chief Minister Ali Rustam has however said the fatwa would be gazetted in the state. It isn't clear how the fatwa would be carried out but it is understood that the Conference of Rulers are likely to insist on their say on the matter. Although religion is a state matter, the Rulers may insist that the yoga ban proposal should be discussed by them first. In states with no Sultans, the King would have to be consulted first, according to some legal opinions. Like Rocky Bru, I am asking readers who post comments to be sensitive on what they write.


amoker said...

Now we know why Perak MB tried to fire Jamry Sumry. 2 of the Sultans in Malaysia spoke up. I heard once that someone said that the Sultan of Perak and Selangor are the wisest and progressive. So it seems. Fatwa council and Jakim should not bulldoze their way since they seemed to have support from UMNO these days. Hopefully, it will humble them to be apolitical.

Unknown said...

Dear Wong,

I have no comment on the fatwa banning yoga, tomboyisness, etc.

However, I suggest that the religious authorities issue fatwas banning money politics, corruption, drug abuse and the abuse of power.

These are issues which are more serious and will lead to a decline and destruction of the nation.

I know these are already criminal and illegal activities but yet they are being carried out BLATANTLY AND IN THE OPEN with impunity.

The rakyat need to be reminded of the sin of these practices which are forbidden or HARAM by all religions.

The public declaration by the religious authorities that these activities are HARAM will be a good reminder to the rakyat.

Anonymous said...

wonderful news indeed!

There is hope yet for the wider malaysian society, with these prudent and wise rulers reining in those bigots who so often presume and claim to know what's good or not for everyone else.

Anonymous said...

Of course this are all for muslims to decide. But I think if to ban it should start with, no muslims should be connected to gambling. For example there should not be muslim directors or share holders of companies connected to gambling. There should not be muslim jockeys, officials or anyone connected to horse racing. And it goes on. If can, ban gambling all together.

BlueMoon said...

Like millions of other Malaysians, I'm new to this yoga stuff. Initally I thought it was just plain exercise and it is good for health. Until this fatwa popped-up, it never crossed my mind there was an element of worship in yoga. I guess if someone does it from health view point, minus the mahtra and chanting then it's OK. Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) encouraged his followers to learn from the chinese, knowing too well that they did not believe in Islam. I'd like to opine that Islam does not discourage muslims to learn from non-muslims, do what they do, as long the basic tenets of islam are not compromised and this new knowledge will benefit the ummah.

Whatmeworry said...

How can a person in this day and age make a ruling that prohibit another from doing this or that ... I mean they are all educated adults and can think for themselves and certainly do not need such "guidance"

Anonymous said...

This mad man called Mohd Ali is trying to cash in on the ruling. I shudder to think of the consequences should this uneducated lout from Malaca becomes our PM one day. Meanwhile I pity my Muslim brothers who are disoriented, dazed and thoroughly beaten by fatwa after fatwa.

joenathan said...

Rocky is a hypocrite,he request readers to be sensitive in their writing,but look at his title `What is Hindu Sangam saying'.Isn't this title itself is provocative in nature.That fella has lost his sense of journalism and creating further division amongst Malaysians.I hope bloggers can be more responsible when touching on sensitive subjects,and help unite Malaysians instead of dividing them with irresponsible and self centered writings like Rocky.Wong you are doing fine ,please keep it up and dont lose your professionalism.Be neutral and fair in your reporting.Thank You.

Anonymous said...

I am a Chinese from a staunch Buddhist family, who grew up with my Indian friends in Bangsar , went to a Catholic school , attended Cathechism classes and ended up marrying a Malay ...
Now , my days are spent sending them for mengaji classes, I have kenduris in my house ..the works..

I really wonder how backward we can be?

Really - are these what we call leaders of the future?

Anonymous said...

we should coment something you dont know.... u think u know..pls do home work what is muslim is all about,...

Anonymous said... owner,

are u muslim, i think u not, otherwise u wont dare discuss this issues in ur blog,

this is muslims issues, why u want to intefere, this is not politic and dont concern u, we muslims had never discuss ur religion,why should u,

if u keep doin this someone will declare jihad on u( means to Fight in oder to protect) u dont want that.....

Anonymous said...

Your view that non-muslims should not comment on muslim matters reflects a mentality of "I take care of mine, and you yours."

You seem to suggest that we should all be as uncritical, unquestioning as yourself, about what happens around us.

You seem not to have considered that in a Malay (therefore Muslim) dominated society like ours, what fatwas, beliefs, will somehow impinge on the rights of others.

Sooner or later, they will say you cannot feature ads depicting yoga (an activity generally accepted as representing wellness).

Sooner or later, they will raid yoga centres on the pretext of catching muslims practising this haram activity. Will this not disrupt business of non-muslim owners of yoga centres?

Will these consequences not cause valuable resources that otherwise should be spent on keeping crime down, battling corruption i.e major social ills be diverted to ... what purpose?

Please THINK before you spout your uncritical writing. My grandfather has always said, ignorance is dangerous.

Anonymous said...

Who is the official voice for Islam? There is no central body for a uniform ruling worldwide. Even in Malaysia, there is really no central body too. Rulings could differ from state to state. In any ambiguous situation, there is potentially opportunities for abuse by enforcement agencies. There are plenty of news reports in Malaysia where such agencies have infringed on the rights of individual Muslims, and sometimes infringing on the rights of non-Muslims too. Where there are ambiguities, and where the holy scriptures are silent, then it becomes a big debate on why some people have the rights to impose their views on others of the same religion, or worse still on people of other religions. I hope Malaysia is not heading to the same direction taken by the likes of Iran, Afghanistan, and Pakistan. We have seen their disastrous consequences. There are plenty of severe social ills that religious heads could help to tackle, such as drugs, sex slavery, incest, school gangsterism, extreme poverty, old people abandoned by their children, handicapped people, homeless folks, etc and in the process, either reinforce somebody's religious belief, or else even win new converts. Why create more confusion among Muslims as well as also frighten off potential converts?
The society needs more love and less hatred. There is already a lot of stress in our lives. There is no need for more rulings to add more stress. If all of us could even follow half of what our respective religions teach us, Malaysia would be a much better place to live in. In fact if even HALF of us could follow HALF of the teachings, it is already good enough.

ChengHo said...

National Fatwa Council forgot they have to seek approval from COUNCIL of Rulers . NO comment so far from defacto religious minister Zahid Hamidi?

Vesu said...

Yoga is universal and known worldwide. accepted and practice by hindus and non-hindus... like muruku,capati,laddu ,tosai, parata etc - its accepted. Yoga is a believe you or the master should impart the services to others without any monetary expectation. BUT now yoga has been commercialised .is a business. people make money out of it... even one blogger suggest that muslims can have halal yoga...
as a hindu I say yoga is not for sale bro.. stay out. if the fatwa saya so .respect it dont interfere in people's religion ,that is my advise for my fellow hindu brothers...enjoy yoga in its true spirit...

Anonymous said...

Datuk Wong,

Have your converted to Islam? If you have, then you can comment on the Fatwa-Islamic.

Please report correctly since the fatwa clearly stated that practicing of YOGA without the Hindu Mantra is allowed.

Secondly, in the two states, the fatwa was put on hold due to administration issues-to obtained the Ruler's consent.

I thought, someone like your stature should not cross the line, or perhaps you want to be another RPK who cried like a wimp in Kemunting and was hailed as a hero out of ISA detention.

Please do not dabble in Islamic issues unless you are a Muslim?

Anonymous said...

Call your MPs now and tell them that We, The Rakyat, reject the racial and religious ploys of corrupt politicians:




Tell them that politics must be based on real issues like the economy, education and human rights — not bogus issues like yoga fatwa and Ketuanan Melayu. Tell them that we reject the blatant use of racist rhetoric, religious bigotry and police brutality used by followers of Mahathirism to divide and rule Malaysians.


Anonymous said...

Congrats Anonymous 12 a.m.for being a good Muslim.
I know of many Muslim converts who are better Muslims than I do.
Islam is essentially a relationship between you and Allah.
If you don't want to abide by the fatwa on Yoga for example, so be it.
But as Muslims you must not criticise or shout out loud you are against it.
The way I see it these people are doing it just to be de rigeur.
They want to be looked at as liberal, progressive Malay Muslims in the likes of Anwar Ibrahim, Haris Ibrahim or Zaid Ibrahim.
It's like now you are a pariah if you vote for Barisan Nasional
The trend now is you embrance change, be the true Malaysian to be liked by the non-Malays.
That's why you see plain posturings by some Malays, lauded by Susan Loone and Zorro, the two top racists bloggers.
They fail to see that they are being laughed at behind their back for bad-mouthing their identity and their religion.
It's okay in politics to pretend what you are, but it's no can do in religion.
Your party may not know your hypocrisy, but God knows.

Anonymous said...

This fatwa thing is just nothing more than UMNO playing divide and rule politic. I dont believe the national fatwa council is doing this for religion purpose.

It is heartening to see the wisdom of the Sultan of Perak and Selangor.
They are providing the progressive leadership that is badly needed in this country.

Anonymous said...

Dear Idzan Ismail,
Unfortunately, Malaysia is not fully secular unlike Turkey. The Muslim or Islam council has the authority of enforcing these fatwas.
Therein lies the problems where such fatwas or edicts affect not only the lives of Malaysians including non muslims.
Why not you guys just settle them among yourself close door in the mosque? Better still, we should follow the step of Turkey. Truly secular muslim state. Lagi better right! We will then leave you guys alone


Anonymous said...

Hi Wong,
I don't remember you putting forward or highlughting Islamic issues during Mahathir's time.

Currently got balls like Nirmala's ex boss? (before she was caught.