Written by Mariam Mokhtar, Malaysia Chronicle
The Perak Mufti Harussani Zakarai’s freedom to ban just about everything in our lives is perhaps one of the reasons why the Malay youth of today is rebellious, uncontrollable and undisciplined.
If the Malay/Muslim is not allowed an avenue to relax, to enjoy or be creative, and to have a bit of a laugh, he will grow up at worst, to be a miserable old grouch, possibly like Harussani or at best, he will end up non compos mentis.
How on earth are Muslims going to live normally, if they are expected to be swathed in cotton wool throughout his life because the likes of Harussani think the Muslim is so weak and his soul so tormented, that he will be easily influenced by the devil or by the teachings of Jesus Christ?
Harussani and the Perak Fatwa Committee, have decided that the poco-poco dance is haram for Muslims. According to him, the dance has elements of Christianity and soul worshipping.
The Perak Menteri besar, Zambry Abdul Kadir, has agreed with the Mufti and said that all quarters should respect him and not create any dispute on the matter.
Is that it? Will no one explain how the poco-poco is considered soul worshipping? Is Zambry afraid of confronting Harussani over this matter?
A dance today, what then tomorrow? The ridiculous ban on yoga a few years ago already damaged Malaysia’s reputation.
Harussani is the same man who forbade us from going to our non-Muslims friends homes for their festival days. So much for Prime minister Najib Abdul Razak’s 1Malaysia interaction.
Harussani is the same man who almost caused a near rebellion when he said that the Manchester United football jerseys should be shunned: “Yes, of course in Islam we don’t allow people to wear this sort of thing. Devils are our enemies. Why would you put their picture on you and wear it? You are only promoting the devil.”
He also said that besides the Red Devils, football shirts of Brazil, Barcelona, Portugal, Norway and Serbia were deemed unacceptable because they had images of the cross or had alcohol brands on them.
As expected, Malaysian supporters of ‘Manchester United’, expressed their anger, on the fan’s websites.
If banning the jerseys is what Harussani and his kill-joy clerics strongly believe in, they might as well ban football.
Football, in Malaysia, has almost a religious following with whole families taking a lively interest in the sport. Even the PM went overboard and declared a holiday when Malaysia won a minor game against Indonesia.
If we can’t dance then what about the DVD’s that promote dancing. They will have to go too. What about the music that accompanies the dance?
Why does the austere Harussani, our politicians and a few lawyers, trip over themselves to see who can make Malaysia the world’s worst joke? Why not just place Muslims in straitjackets?
Malaysia does not need people like Harussani. He is neither the voice of reason nor of moderation.
He causes communities to mistrust each other. He almost caused a lynch mob to assemble at the Silibin church in Ipoh, when he allegedly spread a rumour that Malays were going to be baptized there.
Although many Muslims disagree with Harussani, several liberal Muslims/Malays are too afraid or reluctant to damp out the opposing voices of conservatism. These conservatives play on the Malays’ fears by claiming that by doing certain things, they are doomed in the afterlife.
Harussani does not believe in having information made freely available. He certainly does not like educated Muslims who demand answers based on reason.
Most Muslims believe that religion is not just about punishment, but about education. Unlike Harussani, moderates don’t accept having blind allegiance and acceptance of the faith.
The conservatives like Harussani claim to be defenders of Malays and Islam. They dissuade others from expressing opinions that they don’t want to talk about. They feel slighted at any reference to Malays or Islam. They use the police as a tool and various senior politicians as their minders. These conservatives have managed to silence the non-Malays and any Malay who voices disapproval.
Harussani once described former Perlis mufti Asri Zainul Abidin as a “strange person” who had become “arrogant” after Asri completed his advanced studies in Islam.
Harussani condemned Asri’s need to educate people by saying: “How long do you want to educate a person? The country and this world will be a safer place if we have Islamic laws. When I was in Saudi Arabia I felt very safe.”
Perhaps Harussani could do us all a favour and live in Saudi Arabia. He would be safe, and we would be sane.
Source : Malaysia Chronicle