Sunday, June 18, 2006

Open letter to the mufti of Perak and the Ulama council of Malaysia:

Dear revered Sirs,

I am one of those you've sought to help in your report, the ones you have referred to as being eroded of faith. Yes, my faith in my religion has been eroded. Eroded to such an extent not because I am lacking faith in God, but because I am lacking faith in you. Yes, you, appointed wise men of the religion. Needless to say, I am in full belief now that the world is coming to an end, because as I recall in school, one of the signs is that the matters of the religion are handled by those not qualified to do so. Sounds vague and subjective, but I have deemed all of you unqualified to handle matters of the religion. Ye Datuk-Datuk crony sekalian saya berpendapat begitu.

I do understand the need for certain quarters to study the religion more closely, to be at one with the religion, and to look and practice the finer points of the religion. I even understand the fact that its your job as keepers of the religion to protect it from degradation. But I do not understand how you can look so lowly on, not so much us, muslims by choice (up until now), but look so lowly on Islam. How can you not trust that Islam, for all its great points, could be so unattractive to its believers, as to warrant such a recommendation to the government? How then could you make an assumption that what you believe in should be adopted by everyone, by force or otherwise? Have you thought about the fact that your decisions effect not just Muslims, but everyone else in general?

Frankly Datuks, you've nudged me the wrong way. I did not want to be nudged so far off course, but I've had it Datuks. I am not going to live as a prisoner in my own country. I demand freedom of choice, freedom of expression, and freedom to live as I please. Yes, you have been demanding all sorts of things, so I believe I can demand my rights as well as a legitimate citizen of this country. If you wish to charge me in your mock courts, I have told myself that I will quit this religion officially. (I am sorry for saying this dear God, as I still trust you and believe in you, but you have truly put the religious decisions in this country in the wrong hands and I have lost belief in all your religions.)

Do not get me wrong, there will come a time when I will want to follow the path of the conventional muslim. I believe that time would not be long from now truthfully. But until then, do not make me quit my religion. If you really need to know, I am not the only one who feels this way, and its all because of you Datuks.

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