Monday, April 25, 2005

Update: Christian & Muslim dialogues - is there a future for it?

ISLAM HADHARI Statement by the Malaysian Government

This is the official presentation we keep hearing again and again, and we are told that this is the season for inter-faith dialogues.

Our prime minister said in his response to forgo the idea of a Malaysia Interfaith Panel
said: "Focus on inter-racial and inter-faith dialogues. This will be better as we need to maintain peace and harmony among people of diverse religions,"

But then we hit a snag last week when we suddenly heard of a ban on the Malay bible as announced by Dato’ Seri Mohamed Nazri bin Abdul Aziz in a parliament session. Christians were shocked, for the Malay Bible does serve a role in some Malay speaking congregations in Malaysia.

This was cleared up promptly by a statement from the Prime Minister. I don’t know if you noticed, but suddenly it became an issue of Malays getting converted by reading the bible (of which this Islamic evangelist has some interesting comments, though I don’t appreciate his derogatory language used with reference to our government).

The question I ask (and Kit Siang has his own take not to be missed) at the tail end of this controversy is, how are we supposed to have genuine interfaith dialogues if a Muslim is not allowed to read the Bible? I have a Quran, and I am not scared of it, why should they be of the Bible? I dream of a Malaysia with Ideological Capitalism, where all the ideas get their air play in the marketplace, and people can choose for themselves the ones they think best correspond to reality.

1 comment:

jacksons said...

Check out this news clipping:

BERITA Minggu [a Malaysian paper] highlighted on its front page the Internal Security Ministry’s warning to the owner of a blog for allegedly allowing disparaging remarks about Islam to appear on his website.
The daily quoted Deputy Minister Datuk Noh Omar as saying that this was like playing with fire as it could ignite the Muslim community’s anger and pose a threat to the nation’s internal security.

A comment on the blog allegedly belittled Islam Hadhari.

The same article quoted Umno Youth deputy chief Khairy Jamaluddin as saying that the blog owner should take responsibility even though he had not posted the derogatory remarks.

He said Umno Youth felt that the blog owner should apologise over the matter.

I think they may be talking about guys like MENJ: