Friday, February 5, 2010

Let God in any names it call be God

Jacksonville, Florida, USA
Wednesday, 27th January 2010

Last November the Malaysian government refused to release 10,000 Bibles it had seized because they contained the word Allah to refer to God. The Herald, a publication of the Roman Catholic Church in Malaysia, challenged the government's decision to ban for non-Muslims the use of the word Allah to refer to God. In December, a Malaysian court ruled that such a ban was unconstitutional. The court's decision provoked anger among some Muslims. The Times reported a speaker in a Kuala Lumpur mosque as saying, "We will not allow the word Allah to be inscribed in your churches. Heresy arises from words wrongly used. Allah is only for us." A few Muslims unfortunately went further and attacked churches, badly damaging some of them. Such actions are condemnable as they contradict normative Islam.
Many Muslims erroneously believe they have monopoly over the use of the word Allah, asserting that the Christian God is different from the Muslim God. And yet, normative Islam insists that there is "No God but God," meaning there cannot be a God for Christians and a different God for Muslims.
One of the church that was badly damaged after it was attacked by extremist muslims in Malaysia
Attempts by Malaysian officials to explain the logic behind the initial ban and why the government is now opposing the high court's ruling have been far from convincing. The best analyses point out this unusual move by the ruling UNMO government had less to do with theology and more to do with the ruling political coalition keeping control. The fact that politicians were fanning the flames of passion is hardly news. But it does point to a troubling underlying fact that many Muslims erroneously believe they have monopoly over the use of the word Allah - in essence, asserting that the Christian God is different from the Muslim God. This is oxymoronic because normative Islam insists that there is no God but God, meaning there cannot be a God for Christians and a different God for Muslims.
In A Common Word Between Us and You: An Open Letter and Call from Muslim Religious Leaders, issued in October 2007 to "Leaders of Christian Churches, everywhere," acknowledges that the theologies of Christianity and Islam differ from each other on key points. Yet, when this Muslim-authored document speaks of "God", the word denotes the subject and object of Christian worship, too. This pan-Muslim call for dialogue and cooperation is predicated on the notion that the ground shared by Muslims and Christians is located in our respective scriptural mandates to love God and neighbor. Five distinguished Malaysian scholars and government officials were among the original signatories of A Common Word.
While, in the American context, we don't have legislatures reserving vocabulary for the exclusive use of one religion, we certainly have had occasions of suspicion-casting over matters of God-Talk. It finds its way regularly into political campaigns. Each of us have encountered it in venues where we have been asked to speak about Christian-Muslim relations. Both of us have had to deal with Christians who say of Muslims, "They worship a different god;" or, "there is some question as whether their god is the same as ours." Much of the internet back-and-forth about this reveals considerable ignorance (about the writer's own religion, let alone the religion she or he is criticizing).
To our way of thinking, however, discussions as to whether Christians and Muslim "worship the same God" are, even when well-articulated, based on an ill-founded premise. To ask whether another group "worship the same God as we" is to imply that there are indeed at least two gods. The technical term for such a stance is henotheism - i.e., the notion that there may be more than one god, but only one of them works for me (or, for my group). On the other hand, Muslims and Christians (and Jews, Sikhs, Bahá'ís, Zoroastrians) all claim to be monotheists; and, the logical corollary of monotheism, "belief that there is but one God", is that, no matter who is praying, only one Possibility is listening, whichever way that Ultimate Listener is named or described.
The vast majority of religions do operate from a presumption that there is an Ultimate-a single Source. Most Americans, regardless of their religion, are happy to employ the English word God when referring to this. However, each theistic religion has its own theology-its own way of describing God and God's relationship to the physical and spiritual realms. God may have many names, and concepts of the spiritual realm may be quite complex. Yet God is God; Allah is God; God is Allah. For the love of neighbor, may we be willing to affirm that - whatever language we use?

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The above article which has been published in on 27th January 2010 was written by Professor Parvez Ahmed, a U.S. Fulbright Scholar. He is Associate Professor of Finance at the University of North Florida. Dr. Lucinda Mosher, is a consultant and educator on inter-religious matters. She is the author of the book series Faith in the Neighborhood. would like to ask for sincere apology from Professor Parvez for publshing the article without his prior approval.

Nasir Safar Najib Special Officer make public Apology With Condition

Kuala Lumpur
Thursday, 4th February 2010

Datuk Nasir safar, PM Majib Special Officer : " Indians came to Malaysia as beggars and Chinese especially the women came to sell their bodies”.

Despite millions of public money have been spent to promote PM Najib 1Malaysia, surprisingly there were people who still did not understand the real meaning of 1Malaysia.
On last Tuesday, 2nd February 2010 at the Malacca International Trade Centre Datuk Nasir Safar  was alleged saying a racist remarks against the Indian and Chinese communities in his speech by saying " Indians came to Malaysia as beggars and Chinese especially the women came to sell their bodies”.
As a result of his remarks, he was "forced" to resign from his job with immediate effect. And yesterday in playing down the issues, he issued a public apology with condition.
 “I would like to again openly apologise to all Malaysians for the remarks that are seen as racist. I really did not intend it that way. I have clarified that I did not intend to make racist remarks or insult any races. But there those who feel otherwise and I have apologised for any offence" said Nasir.
1Malaysia concept which has been introduced by PM Najib was one of the most noble concept by BN government. The concept is very similar to Democratic Action Party (DAP) "Malaysia Malysian Concept" , with it main aim is to unite Malaysian multi-races and religions. I am not try to sebotage the concept, but based on what happening lately, I believed that the concept will fail miserably.
The main obstacle to 1Malaysia so far came from the Malay and Muslim community. One of the Malay Association that  openly opposed to 1Malaysia concept is Pertubuhan Pribumi Perkasa Malaysia (PESAKA) which is led by Ibrahim Ali (also Pasir Mas MP who won the seat on PAS ticket) and ex-Malaysian PM Tun Mahathir.
Datuk Nasir is the latest person that "opposed" to PM Najib 1Malaysia. This really came to a surprise for me as the remarks came from a man who was supposed to translate and explain the concept to the all Malaysians!
For me, Nasir remarks representing the feelings of majority of the Malay  or people sorround PM Najib. As we all knew for the past nearly 50 years, Malay has been dominant, and due to Dasar Ekonomi Baru (DEB) or New Economic Policy (NEP) have been recieving the most benefits compared to the others. But with Najib 1malaysia concept, they will lose some of the benefits. So Nasir remarks is not a surprise for me, and please dont blame me, if I say that 1malaysia is a 'Rethoric" and one of PM Najib strategy to win back non-Malay supports.

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