Hornbill Unleashed

December 29, 2013

If Allah is Islam-exclusive, can Bahasa Melayu be national?

Filed under: Human rights,Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 12:00 AM
Tags: , , ,

Wong Chin-Huat

Malaysia is more powerful than any other country on earth. Elsewhere, governments seek the protection of Allah. Here, the government seeks to protect Allah.

And the Christmas season is the time we see this protectionism and pattern warfare again. Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak “the Moderate” has called for a truce on this matter.

Since the Court of Appeal has ruled in favour of Najib’s government, Najib’s truce call is practically to ask the Catholic Church – and the Christian community at large – to give up their right to use the word Allah.

On the eve of Christmas, The Malaysian Chinese Muslim Association – whose leaders include the renowned “internet researcher” Ridhuan Tee – asked the Church point blank to drop their appeal.

Well, Najib who went to a Catholic school (St John’s Institution in Kuala Lumpur) for nine years but Alhamduillah never got confused, has already offered a moderate solution: “1 Malaysia, 2 Allahs, Endless possibilities”.

Without any legal basis but purely at the government’s mercy, Christians can actually use the word Allah in Sabah and Sarawak. They only need to check the word Allah into their luggage when their flight enters Malaya’s airspace.

A survey by Universiti Malaya’s Centre for Democracy and Elections (UMCEDEL) suggested that 77% of the Malays accept that solution. Only 11% of the Malay respondents agree that Allah is not a pattented word for Muslims only.

In response to Najib’s call, outgoing Catholic Archbishop Tan Sri Murphy Pakiam has asked Najib to drop the Allah ban. He prays that Najib will be a uniting statesman rather than “a bickering politician”.

The faithful would say, all things are possible in God. And this is supposed to be the season of faith, if you have not acquired it earlier in the year.

But until the miracle happens, may I suggest both sides of the divide to stare at the elephant in the room?

The battle is not about the word Allah per se. It is about the use of Bahasa Melayu in faith-related context for any non-Islamic purpose.

The logic is actually simple – if you are a Malayan, you should understand it without any difficulty – since Malays are Muslim by constitutional definition, surely their language has to be a Muslim language. Now, if you are not out there to convert the Malays into other faiths, why must you use Bahasa Melayu as the preaching language?

Let me offer two evidences of this elephant.

First, besides Allah, many other words have also been made Islam-exclusive by various states.

Even In Sabah, 32 words including “Nabi” and “Rasul” have been banned from non-Muslim use by a fatwa issued by the Mufti Kerajaan Sabah on June 1, 2003 (No. 1,039) under Section 35 of the Enakmen Pentadbiran Undang-Undang Islam 1992 (Enakmen No. 13 tahun 1992), according to lawyer-activist Peter Marajin.

Now, what is left in an Abrahamic faith without the word “prophet”?

Second, the Indonesian version of The Origin of Species has been banned in Malaysia since 2006. Why is the English original still legally available?

Clearly, the purpose is to protect those who can read only Bahasa Melayu from the deviant teaching of Charles Darwin. Too bad for those who read English, since their faith cannot be protected from possible contamination by the evolutionists.

By the same logic, you will get into trouble if you are going to publish and circulate any religious texts for Buddhism or Hinduism in Malay. Never mind these texts are readily available in Indonesia. (One can only hope we won’t have a travel ban on Indonesia someday).

I did not make up this elephant from imagination or by logical deduction.

Here are the words of Datuk Seri Mohamed Nazri Abdul Aziz, a senior minister who has served under three prime ministers.

“Among other things, it is interpreted that if you translate any religious books into Malay language, then that is seen as an act to propagate religions other than Islam to those who profess the Muslim faith,” the then de facto law minister told Sarawak-based Borneo Post in an exclusive interview in 2010.

Instead of giving empty talk on religious harmony, Najib should just save Malaysians’ time by answering these questions:

First, if Bahasa Melayu is exclusive for Islam, can it still be the national language?

Second, if yes, is the political agenda of promoting Bahasa Melayu as the national language to eventually make every Malaysian national a Muslim?

For Allah’s sake, that’s where we need his honest answers. Does a man who received nine years of English-medium education in a Catholic school – despite having a nationalist minister father – actually believe in Bahasa Melayu as the national language?

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24 Comments »

  1. Allah is an Arabic word, not a Bahasa Melayu word so, that comparison, religion against language is totally off-tangent. Bahasa Melayu is the country’s national language and it is embedded in the Federal Constitution so, this cannot be questioned. Bahasa Melayu as a language has nothing to do with religion (Islam). No Muslims will ever accept the word ‘Allah’ to be any other language except Arabic. If one argues that ‘Arabic’ appears in the Kamus Dewan as a loan word, that’s a different matter altogether. Since the situation now in the country is that many non-Muslims prefer to talk about Islam and not the other way round, it is only proper that they know the subject (Islam) thoroughly in order to qualify themselves or at least carry out some research about Islam before talking about it otherwise, they will be talking nonsense or rubbish!

    THE AWAITED PROPHET WAS TO COME FROM ARABIA

    Deuteronomy 33:1-2 combines references to Moses, Jesus and Muhammad. It speaks of God (i.e. God’s revelation) coming from Sinai, rising from Seir (probably the village of Sa’ir near Jerusalem) and shining forth from Paran. According to Genesis 21:21, the wilderness of Paran was the place where Ishmael settled (i.e. Arabia, specifically Mecca).

    Indeed the King James version of the Bible mentions the pilgrims passing through the valley of Ba’ca (another name of Mecca) in Psalms 84:4-6.

    Isaiah 42:1-13 speaks of the beloved of God. His elect and messenger who will bring down a law to be awaited in the isles and who “shall not fail nor be discouraged till he have set judgement on earth.” Verse 11, connects that awaited one with the descendants of Ke’dar. Who is Ke’dar? According to Genesis 25:13, Ke’dar was the second son of Ishmael, the ancestor of prophet Muhammad.

    MUHAMMAD’S MIGRATION FROM MECCA TO MEDINA:
    PROPHECIED IN THE BIBLE?

    Habakkuk 3:3 speaks of God (God’s help) coming from Te’man (an Oasis North of Medina according to J. Hasting’s Dictionary of the Bible), and the holy one (coming) from Paran. That holy one who under persecution migrated from Paran (Mecca) to be received enthusiastically in Medina was none but prophet Muhammad.
    Indeed the incident of the migration of the prophet and his persecuted followers is vividly described in Isaiah 21:13-17. That section foretold as well about the battle of Badr in which the few ill-armed faithful miraculously defeated the “mighty” men of Ke’dar, who sought to destroy Islam and intimidate their own folks who turned -to Islam.

    THE QUR’AN (KORAN) FORETOLD IN THE BIBLE?

    Read here for more: http://www.islamicity.com/mosque/muhammad_bible.htm

    Comment by hak55 — January 1, 2014 @ 11:19 PM | Reply

  2. Those who follow the Apostle, the unlettered Prophet, Whom they find mentioned in their own Scriptures, in the Torah and the Gospel… (Holy Qu’ran: VII – 157; Translation: Yusif Ali)

    BIBLE PROPHECIES ABOUT THE ADVENT OF MUHAMMAD

    Abraham is widely regarded as the Patriarch of monotheism and the common father of the Jews, Christians and Muslims. Through His second son, Isaac, came all Israelite prophets including such towering figures as Jacob, Joseph, Moses, David, Solomon and Jesus. May peace and blessings be upon them all. The advent of these great prophets was in partial fulfillment of God’s promises to bless the nations of earth through the descendents of Abraham (Genesis12:2-3).Such fulfillment is wholeheartedly accepted by Muslims whose faith considers the belief in and respect of all prophets an article of faith.

    THE AWAITED PROPHET WAS TO COME FROM ARABIA

    Deuteronomy 33:1-2 combines references to Moses, Jesus and Muhammad. It speaks of God (i.e. God’s revelation) coming from Sinai, rising from Seir (probably the village of Sa’ir near Jerusalem) and shining forth from Paran. According to Genesis 21:21, the wilderness of Paran was the place where Ishmael settled (i.e. Arabia, specifically Mecca).

    Indeed the King James version of the Bible mentions the pilgrims passing through the valley of Ba’ca (another name of Mecca) in Psalms 84:4-6.

    Isaiah 42:1-13 speaks of the beloved of God. His elect and messenger who will bring down a law to be awaited in the isles and who “shall not fail nor be discouraged till he have set judgement on earth.” Verse 11, connects that awaited one with the descendants of Ke’dar. Who is Ke’dar? According to Genesis 25:13, Ke’dar was the second son of Ishmael, the ancestor of prophet Muhammad.

    MUHAMMAD’S MIGRATION FROM MECCA TO MEDINA:
    PROPHECIED IN THE BIBLE?

    Habakkuk 3:3 speaks of God (God’s help) coming from Te’man (an Oasis North of Medina according to J. Hasting’s Dictionary of the Bible), and the holy one (coming) from Paran. That holy one who under persecution migrated from Paran (Mecca) to be received enthusiastically in Medina was none but prophet Muhammad.
    Indeed the incident of the migration of the prophet and his persecuted followers is vividly described in Isaiah 21:13-17. That section foretold as well about the battle of Badr in which the few ill-armed faithful miraculously defeated the “mighty” men of Ke’dar, who sought to destroy Islam and intimidate their own folks who turned -to Islam.

    THE QUR’AN (KORAN) FORETOLD IN THE BIBLE?

    Read here for more: http://www.islamicity.com/mosque/muhammad_bible.htm

    Comment by hak55 — January 1, 2014 @ 10:51 PM | Reply

  3. Scaredy Cat, Yoiu said, “Why is it always a one-way street, asking people to know Islam inside out before commenting? How about some reciprocation? Why don’t you people know the Christian point of view inside out? Or the Hindu, Buddhist, Taoist, Sikh, Bahai, Sky Kingdom, Tuhan Harun, bomoh, Dayak animism, Kadazan animism, Mayan human sacrificialist… points of view inside out? Why don’t you people turn off your brains and swallow the other religions’ rationalities and irrationalities …” This trouble is , many non-Muslims, I notice, prefer to discuss Islam and they do not even want to discuss their own religion, that’s why!

    Comment by hak55 — December 31, 2013 @ 3:50 PM | Reply

    • Muslims will curse Christians for just being Christians. Forgetting that both are Abrahamic religions, the other one Judaism. A tree with three branches. This is cursing an elder brother. Christianity is an earlier religion thus it’s scripture does not contain Mohamad, Muhammad, Mohmet, Mohamed, Mohammad, Muhammed, Muhamet A true Muslim believes in four books – Quran, Taurat, Injil and one more. Meaning a Muslim also shares the Great Prophet – Jesus and all other earlier prophets. I believe you know whom they are : Adam – Adam, Ishak – Isaac, Yakub – Jacob, Harun -Aaron, Yusof -Joseph, Ayub – Job, Yunus – Jonah, Sulaiman – Solomon, Iskandar – Alexander, Ibrahim -Abraham, Noh -Noah , Daud -David . A bible does not contain Mohamad.

      Comment by No Double Talk — December 31, 2013 @ 6:05 PM | Reply

  4. The Malay word for Allah or God is ‘Tuhan’ and Allah has never been a Malay word. It has always been an Arabic word. One cannot use language which has been accepted as the country’s national language, i.e., Bahasa Melayu as a comparison or an argument against the use of ‘Allah’ by people of other religion. It is like comparing apples to oranges. As I said above, “if the writer had quoted from the Al-Quran or the Hadith or sayings, even edicts, by recognised Ulamak, and if he had verified them, that would be different matter altogether,” or if he had used quotations from the Bible or other religious books, his arguments will carry some weight. So, I stay and I still say the writer is way off-the-mark!

    Comment by hak55 — December 31, 2013 @ 12:07 AM | Reply

    • D-o… y-o-u… k-n-o-w… w-h-a-t… “l-o-a-n… w-o-r-d…” m-e-a-n-s…? L-o-o-k… u-p… A-l-l-a-h… i-n… a… M-a-l-a-y… d-i-c-t-i-o-n-a-r-y…

      Comment by Scaredy Cat — December 31, 2013 @ 5:18 AM | Reply

  5. Most Moslems will stop abruptly and observe silence upon hearing the Azan Allahu Akhbar. It’s volume will resonate thunderously miles away. Fine. Christians will not even utter Allah, just read it. Is it a grave danger for Christians to merely read the word? Pelik, ajaib dan lucu.

    Comment by No Double Talk — December 30, 2013 @ 6:38 PM | Reply

  6. Lot of energy and resources of the this planet earth are wasted upon religion in all of its varied forms. Had the resources been spent to understand life and its problem, we would today be living in a world full of intellectually and rational human beings.Most of our social and domestic problems would have been solved and equally as important, our understanding and relations with the other people of the world would have by now, brought about universal peace. Man should have a better understanding of his motives and actions,and should have learned to curb his primitive instincts for superiority and power. He would know by now that pursuing conflicts, aggression and subjugating minorities to their whim and fancies would only give rise to more conflicts,misery,ruin and human suffering. There is no need to hypothesize your religious value here. We can learned from middle eastern countries conflicts.

    Comment by kira commonsense — December 30, 2013 @ 11:37 AM | Reply

  7. Allah is an Arabic word, not a Bahasa Melayu word so, by using that comparison, the writer is totally writing out-of-point!

    Religion is not based on logic, it is a lot more than that , one has to know about Islam thoroughly first before making such comments or giving such opinions. Does the writer know about Islam (the subject) thoroughly in the first place?

    One cannot relate religion to politics, being nationalistic, culture or language or even by the use of logic. Here, I am referring to ‘religion’ as the Islamic religion. I cannot talk about any other religion because I am in no position to do so. Anyway, a lot of the things mentioned in the article are, to me, mere opinions only and even when the writer quoted things said by others in his article, they are also, to me, mere opinions. However, if the writer had quoted from the Al-Quran or the Hadith or sayings, even edicts, by recognised Ulamak, and if he had verified them, that would be different matter altogether.

    It is quite normal to demand that a person who wishes to talk about a subject knows the subject well, just guessing and even quoting from others, regardless of the person’s or persons’ position in society, and not knowing or not sure whether what they are quoting are right or wrong, is totally improper and not professional.

    Although I do not agree with the Court of Appeal’s ruling which has ruled in favour of the Najib’s government, i.e. the term ‘Allah’ is Islam-exclusive, the writer should not confuse religion with politics, being nationalistic, culture or language or even with the use of logic.

    Comment by hak55 — December 29, 2013 @ 11:37 PM | Reply

    • Allah is a loan word in Malay, just like gereja, sekolah, almari, bendera, kereta, limau, mangga, nanas and pesta are Portuguese loan words in Malay. Loan words ARE part of a language. You’re the one who is out of point.

      So we are supposed to suspend critical and logical thinking when it comes to Islam, is it? Why is it always a one-way street, asking people to know Islam inside out before commenting? How about some reciprocation? Why don’t you people know the Christian point of view inside out? Or the Hindu, Buddhist, Taoist, Sikh, Bahai, Sky Kingdom, Tuhan Harun, bomoh, Dayak animism, Kadazan animism, Mayan human sacrificialist… points of view inside out? Why don’t you people turn off your brains and swallow the other religions’ rationalities and irrationalities whole? The fact is, Islam is funded by public money and imposed on the country’s political system. That makes it national, political and everybody’s business. Sarawak and Sabah are dumb to be paying oil money for their own Islamic colonization.

      Comment by Scaredy Cat — December 30, 2013 @ 6:01 AM | Reply

    • Are Malay Muslims more holy than all Muslims in other parts of the world? Muslims all over the world revered and seek protection from Allah but only in Malaysia the UMNO Baru Muslims seek to protect Allah ! Is that not strange to you and you have chosen to side the ultra extremists’s argument on Islam and Allah? There is no compulsion in Islam. Your religion and faith is between you and Allah. Malaysia under the rule of UMNO Baru which claims to be an Islamic state is a laughing stock to the world and Muslim countries.Both Najib and Taib and many Muslim leaders attended Catholic secondary school or other mission schools but they were never confused and had themselves converted to Christian. You should know what it takes to be a true Muslim in the eyes of Allah. Muslims with a narrow mind despite embracing science and mathematics shall never be progressive. Either you choose to serve Allah and spread his good words or you choose to support the corrupted and bigots.

      Comment by Mata Kuching — December 30, 2013 @ 8:52 AM | Reply

  8. Allah is an Arabic word, not a Bahasa Melayu word so, by using that comparison, the writer is totally writing out-of-point!

    Religion is not based on logic, it is a lot more than that , one has to know about Islam thoroughly first before making such comments or giving such opinions. Does the writer know about Islam (the subject) thoroughly in the first place?

    One cannot relate religion to politics, being nationalistic, culture or language or even by the use of logic. Here, I am referring to ‘religion’ as the Islamic religion. I cannot talk about any other religion because I am in no position to do so. Anyway, a lot of the things mentioned in the article are, to me, mere opinions only and even when the writer quoted things said by others in his article, they are also, to me, mere opinions. However, if the writer had quoted from the Al-Quran or the Hadith or sayings, even edicts, by recognised Ulamak, and if he had verified them, that would be different matter altogether.

    It is quite normal to demand that a person who wishes to talk about a subject knows the subject well, just guessing and even quoting from others, regardless of the person’s or persons’ position in society, and not knowing or not sure whether what they are quoting are right or wrong, is totally improper and not professional.

    Although I do not agree with the Court of Appeal’s ruling which has ruled in favour of the Najib’s government, i.e. the term ‘Allah’ is Islam-exclusive, the writer should not confuse religion with politics, being nationalistic, culture or language or even with the use of logic.

    Comment by hak55 — December 29, 2013 @ 11:36 PM | Reply

    • “One cannot relate religion to politics…….”

      Then tell us why UMNO Leaders in all of their Annual Gem. Assemblies call upon their members to give their undivided support to UMNO for the sake of UGAMA, Bangsa and Negara?

      Comment by brian — December 30, 2013 @ 9:44 AM | Reply

  9. In this stupid zombie land harping on corruption means excusing the Malays of corruption. Exposing Umno Baru and BN ministers of corruption means treason. WYF..revolt ? I say YES.

    Comment by Awaken Dayak — December 29, 2013 @ 7:43 PM | Reply

  10. Only paranoid and inferior complexion could cause people constantly feel being threaten and intimidated by others. By claiming to be superior and object of jealousy, they made weird claims which are jokes in the world now. Ha ha ha ……..Owl always think rats are funny and pitiful ones but to my surprise, there are some who are much more.

    Comment by owl — December 29, 2013 @ 6:53 PM | Reply

  11. This is a classic case of the 2 natures embedded in man being brought out to play on Malaysian stage.In evolution term there is a conflict within human, conflicting between 2 basic natures. One is the animal natures that perpetuated the human specie to this day. The other is logical nature that helped human to think logically. So we see one party is trying its assert superiority by mean of race and religion and the other party is trying to contain the assertion logically. Offensive nature verses logical defensive nature. The tool of the conflict used is the religion and race..Sadly, they failed to see that the inherent nature of man is in conflict.. Failing to rein in the aggressive animistic in man would only lead to destruction. Nothing positive would come of it.Instead of deluding ourselves by quoting religious texts here and there, it is just to make ourselves SHIOK. Only critical reasoning can provide solution. Even in the primates colony we often see they can settle issues amicably. Come on Malaysians wake up to the reality. US has a robotic rover gathering scientific data in Mars for mankind to understand the universe and here we are conflicting with idiotic issue.

    Comment by kira commonsense — December 29, 2013 @ 1:11 PM | Reply

  12. If Malaysia is 1Melayu and Allah is for Muslims (more specifically Malay Muslims only), it goes without saying that Bahasa Malaysia is for Malays and Muslims only. Why should you hornbill guys even bother with such a medieval language of narrowminded mediocrity, backwardness and incompetence. I suggest all Sabahans and Sarawakians study English and Chinese exclusively like they do in Singapore. In Chinese education you get to excel in Mathematics and Science. In English education, you get to excel in the language of the Internet. If you excel in both the world becomes your oyster. You can dwell in any Western country like a modern-day cosmopolitan and you can even Balik Cina…where skyrocketing business boom and steamrolling economic growth will spearhead all you hornbill natives to success and advancement. Forget a world class pariah state like Malaysia =1Melayu, 1Allah Untuk 1Muslim and 1Bahasa – that does more harm than good for you and your future. Take my word for it.

    Comment by nickkraemr — December 29, 2013 @ 1:08 PM | Reply

    • Bro, Sarawak is Tanah Brooke. We know who we are. We like who we are. We cherish our distinct identity. Forget Malaya, yes. Forget Sarawak, no. Why should we blindly ape soul-less and amoral Singapore and China, where human lives have no worth outside the economic one?

      Comment by Scaredy Cat — December 29, 2013 @ 2:50 PM | Reply

      • when come to ERECTION, no difference lah, sarawakians still bow LOW to $$$ which changing kit-lin kia to melayu, & cina gui licking to be superior race in dilusion, eg that Puki PORK eating Bak Kut Tee .

        Comment by tiuniamah — December 29, 2013 @ 7:21 PM | Reply

    • Hello, Bahasa Melayu does not belong to the Malays only. According to Wikipedia (Malay language), “Malay historical linguists agree on the likelihood of the Malay homeland being in western Borneo”. Oldest inscriptions were however found in South Sumatra. Indonesia adopted it as their national language and re-named it Bahasa Indonesia while still recognizing Bahasa Melayu as a regional language in Sumatra.

      So, Bahasa Melayu is part of Sarawak’s heritage. Be proud of it .

      Comment by Adam — December 31, 2013 @ 12:23 PM | Reply

  13. BM got no commercial value outside bolehland.

    Comment by damien — December 29, 2013 @ 11:52 AM | Reply

  14. Bodohlanders are truly bodoh … lazy and no brain … parasites of the worst kind in the world

    Comment by tigerykey — December 29, 2013 @ 11:16 AM | Reply

  15. This is the most absurd and stupid country I have ever known. Ruled by a stupid arrogant people who know nothing better than being corrupt, lazy and shameless hypocrites.

    Comment by Sharpshooter — December 29, 2013 @ 7:53 AM | Reply

    • this is Bodohland lah, just feeling sad & pity those ketuanan majority kena pulling by their nose like Lembus by those politicians working hard to archieve their personal agenda, & smiling all the way to the BANKs. and at the same time telling the people to workhard so can earn more to cover Barang Naik problems. There is another PIG from Pahang saying any one who is not happy with rising cost can leave the country, a typical PIG who never think of their own race who is also suffering in this competitive Global atmospheres to fight for survival.

      Comment by tiuniamah — December 29, 2013 @ 9:37 AM | Reply


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