A reader of this blog AC-DC is wondering if Malays and Muslims are able to differentiate between peninsular non-Malay Christians, and Sabah and Sarawak pribumi Christians?
Since some Malays – such as Ibrahim Ali and his Perkasa group – want the Bible in Bahasa Indonesia (or BM) using kalimah Allah to be banned in Malaysia, isn’t that punishing the pribumi Christians who actually use the Malay language in their worship?
Do the majority Malays and Muslims (i.e. those asking for restrictions to be enforced) not think that depriving some Sabahan and Sarawakian Christians – for whom Malay is their primary language – of the use of their Holy Book in the tradition they’re familiar with (i.e. using kalimah Allah) is a form of collective punishment?
The Sabahan and Sarawakian Christians had not come into conflict with the peninsular Muslims over their use of the kalimah Allah during the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s. So why is this friction coming to the fore now?
Below is a screenshot of AC-DC’s comment, originally @ 2013/03/19 at 8:50 pm
27 thoughts on “Is the ban on Christians using kalimah Allah a collective punishment?”
From my experience with my friends from Sabah/Sarawak who are Christians, they never ‘claim’ to use the word ‘Allah’. I have never heard they use the word ‘Allah’ in their conversation among themselves either verbally or written (facebook).
I can conclude that they understand the sensitivities of using the word, thus the self censoring.
About differentiating between peninsula Christians and East Malaysia Christians is easy. Its their Bahasa dialect. They use different dialect from peninsula Bahasa.
My 2 cents. :)
“Helen” itu nama Kristian/Inggeris atau nama Konfucius/Cina??
Btw orang Kristian boleh guna istilah Allah dinegara Arab orang Kristian guna nama Allah… perbezaan teologi Ketuhanan tidak membuatkan orang Kristian tidak boleh guna nama Allah, lihat disini (klik)
Sebenarnya mudah saja isu ini, tetapi masalahnya di Malaysia selain ramai orang yang kurang pengetahuan isu ini dimanipulasi oleh kepentingan politik…. ini masalahnya….
Helen = nama Yunani
Helen of Troy = seorang ratu Sparta yang hidup pada zaman Perang Trojan (1,260 tahun sebelum masihi)
Asal-usul nama Helen tidak mempunyai apa-apa kaitan dengan agama Kristian kerana ia telah lama digunakan di barat mendahului kelahiran Nabi Isa
Please don’t insult Helen of troy by attempting to compare yourself to her. D
It’s 4am. Why are you stalking me around the clock?
Catholic church leaders in Sarawak are adopting a wait & see attitude since the (interim) solution proposed by Idris Jala enables the faithful to continue to use the term.
The loudest noise unfortunately did not originate from Bishops Ha, Chung, Hii, Su & Lee of Sarawak. Instead Bishop Tan has taken the lead in the “battle” for the right to use the term. Even then, Bishop Pakiam has held his own counsel over the matter & urged the faithful to await the court’s decision.
The case garnered a lot of publicity over the renewal of the printing permit for the Herald & exacerbated by the case filed by Jill Ireland over the seizure of CDs & literature that used the term.
What are politicians if not opportunistic? You see a lot of them jumping on the bandwagon with suspect intentions. They all seem to wanna give their unsolicited two sen. To an extent, they succeeded in painting a picture of religious persecution thus whipping up the anti establishment sentiments.
Are East Malaysian Christians being punished over this matter? It appears to be the case but scratch the surface & it may tell you a different story.
I speak from the viewpoint of a Catholic, so my references do not include those of other denominations.
For BM Mass, I can only recall the term Allah used twice; the Gloria & the Lord’s Prayer. At times, there are inconsistencies as God the Father is translated as Allah Bapa & Tuhan Bapa. That being the case, I don’t see why it can’t be streamlined as it is just a matter of getting used to. And that can’t be too difficult considering the universal Catholic Church had a major revamp in liturgical text the new Roman translation about a year & a half ago.
I speak pidgin Iban so I’m not actually privy of their liturgical terms. As for Bidayuhs, God the Father, the Son & the Holy Spirit is translated as Topa Sama, Onak & Roh Kudus. Note that Topa means God so the term Allah is not used by the Bidayuhs in their mother tongue.
All said, it is best that all sides take a step back & allow the courts to deliberate & adjudicate the matter. I don’t see the point of arguing & repeating trite reasoning when the appeal is still pending. All the incessant squabble & sniping serves only to stoke unpleasant feelings.
As for the Catholics & Christians hell bent on righteousness in defending a word, perhaps it is worth remembering what is written in Luke 20: 45-47.
The DAP evangelista potential (likely) candidate jumped into the fray, https://helenang.wordpress.com/2013/01/02/hanya-muslim-yang-rapuh-iman-boleh-begitu-mudah-konpius-kata-juru-strategi-dap/
Too much emotions expended on this issue without any consensus. Am frankly fed up about this issue & feel that Christians ought to know they’re being used as pawns in political play.
Bishop Tan happens to think that the hottest spots in hell are reserved for certain segments of society. I hope they’ve reservations for them bible thumping m*********ing evangelists.
And no, I make no apologies for what I just said. I’ll take my chances that God is indeed a merciful & understanding God.
Emotions helped along by church activism and “the prophetic role of the media” (within quote marks as I’m quoting from the NECF booklet guide to GE13).
Altho’ The Scissors is usually my fav target, in the matter of pro-Christian media activism, the role is borne by TMI I’d have to say.
TMI is admittedly rather fond of airing the views of those who are critical of the government over their handling of the religious hot potato such as Martin Jalleh, David Martin, Jacob Sinnathamby etc.
Incidently, Martin Jalleh is a well sought after speaker for camps, seminars & retreats especially for teenagers & young adults in the Catholic church. I’ve had the (mis)fortune of attending two of such talks. One was palatable as his session was about 3 hours. The other was rather tedious as it was a whole weekend of PR indoctrination under the guise of religion.
I for one, Setuju sangat bila Kristian di Malaysia nak gunakan Bahasa Melayu
Matius 26:39 terjemahannya
Yesus menjauh sedikit dari mereka lalu sujud dan berdoa. Kata-Nya, “Allah, kalau boleh, jangan berikan penderitaan itu kepada-Ku, tetapi lakukanlah yang Engkau kehendaki, bukan kehendak-Ku.”
Yesus sujud dan berdoa kepada Allah, sepertimana yang dilakukan oleh kesemua kesemua Nabi dari Nabi Adam hingga Nabi Muhammad
Curious, as far as the readerships of this blog is concerned, where does everyone stand on the question of freedom of expression in the context of the Allah issue ?
is there any limit to freedom of expression in our Country ?
Yes and not only in our country.
But what I would like to hear, are individual views.
My views are that there is a limitation to freedom of expression in the context of the Allah issue.
I don’t know what you are trying to speculate hear ,if it’s not really understood it’s could gave a reverse input on the outcome of coming GE.
Never know of such thing as collective punishment but one thing for sure is Melayu mudah lupa, they are not like the ‘ultrakiseuw’ Chinese who believe in paying back punishment.
If Melayu were to believe in such ways, I am in the opinion that the Chinese and Indian wont come to the level that they are behaving now but one thing which I am sure of, they don’t compromise with their religion.
Let’s replace the word “Tuhan” with “Allah” in our national anthem Negara Ku and our Rukunegara since we are all now referring to the same “God”.
sometimes, i wonder over the dramatic usage of certain words & in this case: persecuted. Pardon my knowledge of the English language but not allowing the usage of Allah throughout Malaysia but limited to Sabah & Sarawak cannot be classified as persecution or being persecuted,isn’t it?
To answer Conrad’s question, as liberal as i admit myself to be, I am ok with using Allah for the Sabah & Sarawak sections due to the language but to use it in the peninsular would a no-no for me.
The mother tongue of the Jerusubang, Bangsarites (or those who think they are there though they’re not) is English. The mass or service they go to would be conducted in their mother tongue and chinese.
Moreover, though they use the arab countries as example of sharing god’s name, what about the countries they idolises: america, uk, oz, etc? They (the westerners) find it sacreligious as to them Allah is name of a pagan’s god.
So, what’s the MO for this interest in asia, out of a sudden?
anyway, how many christians (the followers not preacher turned politicians) in Msia really keen on this matter anyway? Even FFC, a christian finds it absurd.
re: “though they use the arab countries as example of sharing god’s name, what about the countries they idolises: america, uk, oz”
Good point AJ. I shall remember to repeat it.
What I’m gonna say may seem disrespectful but I make no apologies for it. Ask many a Sarawakian Christian (major denominations; Methodist, Anglicans, RC etc) & more often than not you’ll find a majority sharing the same views.
It seems to be the rage nowadays to “suffer” for the faith & for Christ. We get a whole lot of evangelicals proclaiming that Jesus is their Savior & it is their sacred duty to tell the world of the good news (just another term for evangelism). It is no wonder that such churches are mushrooming especially here in Klang Valley. Their ideal target group would be the affluent, well heeled & educated types whose enthusiasm & brio fits into their plans for a wider reach & deeper pockets.
In Sarawak, the situation is different. The “talent pool” of evangelical target is somewhat smaller. As such, evangelical churches have stagnated in terms of membership there. It doesn’t help that some of the prominent ones (whose names I will not mention) impose medieval restrictions on their followers.
Among others, their day of rest is Saturday. On this day they’re not allowed to work & must avail themselves for a full day of church service unlike denominational ones where services are about an hour or so long weekly. As per their SJ brethren, their services consists of a lot of praise & worship, singing etc. Their faithful are also required to strictly observe the non consumption of alcohol, coffee (yep, no typo there), pork, cigarettes 24/7 365.
As such, Christians in Sarawak are less tolerant of their evangelical brethren. They are viewed as religious fundamentalists thus stunting their ability to expand their churches in the state further. Which is why unlike their sisters & brothers in SJ (who aims everyone, stopping only short of the Muslims), they target members of the major denominations to save & offer the salvation of Christ by being “born again”.
At the crux of it, it is not the pinching that concerns the church. Rather it is their narrow interpretation of the religion & not respecting boundaries in their zeal for evangelism that pisses others off. And we can clearly see that that is a universal feature of the evangelists, none more so than in SJ.
re: “Which is why unlike their sisters & brothers in SJ (who aims everyone, stopping only short of the Muslims)”
They’re not stopping short of the Muslims. That’s why DUMC became an issue.
re: “Their ideal target group would be the affluent, well heeled & educated types whose enthusiasm & brio fits into their plans for a wider reach & deeper pockets.”
The well-heeled and educated types would have more reach, influence and capability (rich people have free time to play golf, a poor man works two low paying jobs). So say, you convert a Tan Sri tycoon fanatically to your evangelism and there you’d have the resources of his financial empire at your disposal.
Hence my complaints that the evangelistas control the English-language media.
However what I’d like to ask you is why you think the Jerusubangites succumb to the City Harvest racket?
Why did the rich buy indulgences from the church centuries ago? Same MO, different centuries.
A friend of mine, a Datuk who provides professional services for my company confided in me once about such churches of which he is a member.
From day one it is drummed into the congregation that God demands 10% of your income as tithes. They even quoted biblical passages to reinforce the argument.
So this Datuk parts with 10% of his gross income every month which is quite substantial as he admits his income is usually 6 figures monthly. If he’s a bit late in remitting his cheque, he’ll get a reminder call from the church’s clerk.
Just goes on to show how money is central to their worship.
The kind of lucrative tithe collection can fund a lot of activities.
Some additions to expand the scope of the discussion, and not just focus on naming conventions;
Collective punishment also envelopes other forms, such as harrassment on places of worship, seizure of NCR lands based on religion, and job or college entry discrimination.
The Holy name Allah has never been used by the Christians in the Peninsular Malaysia before…
Question is why now?
The Holy name Allah is being used by all muslims at all over the world irrespective of races and languages while the Christians changes ‘their’ God names everywhere according to the natives languages thus makes Christian is still confused over their God’s name.
Since your name is ‘Helen’ here, tell me whether you are confused when you are being called differently in Korean, Tamil, Urdu or Swahili language…..
To me, when LGE insist to have ‘ALLAH’ name printed in the Bible for the whole Malaysia, it is actually a political move to divide the Muslims especially Malays further (Malays already divided to 3 sections and this move is to further divide them apart).
LGE tactics is base on 3C principles and he always use it every time.
3C means at first he will speculate to ‘Convinced’ by his presentation. Then he will make you ‘Confused’ and upon seeing opportunity looking at how confused you are, he will ‘Con’ you.
As for Perkasa and Ibrahim Ali who insist a total ban in Malaysia, I believe he may be right in the perception that Malay Muslims akidah especially in the Peninsular is not ‘solid’ enough to face the challenge of the Christian Missionary.
I speak the truth because you can ask any Malay Muslims and the reality is they are really scared even to meet a ‘paderi’….!
FFC said, “For BM Mass, I can only recall the term Allah used twice; the Gloria & the Lord’s Prayer. At times, there are inconsistencies as God the Father is translated as Allah Bapa & Tuhan Bapa. That being the case, I don’t see why it can’t be streamlined as it is just a matter of getting used to”……this phrase when read by a normal Malay Muslims in the Peninsular, they will jump to a conclusion that it is ‘syirik’….merosakkan ‘akidah’ because Allah is ‘Ahad’ !
I agree with Perkasa on the proposed ban because a translation of God is Tuhan in Bahasa Melayu which is already enough for the Bahasa Melayu Bible and therefore I could not see that it is of in any way a punishment to the Christians.
Some additions for clarity =
Some additions to expand the scope of the discussion, and not just focus on naming conventions;
Collective punishment also includees other forms, like harrassment on places of worship, seizure of NCR lands based on religion,and job or college entry discrimination.
And to correct Helen’s first sentence: “A reader of this blog AC-DC is wondering if Malays and Muslims are able to differentiate“.
It would actually be the fascist government being able to unable to differentiate, hence why the collective punishment.
The is a large difference between a government versus citizens of an ethnic / religious group.
look at fatwa sheik Yusuf al Qaradwi Hafizullah
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