The Sultan of Selangor’s decree that non-Muslims in the state are forbidden from using the term “Allah” has drawn the ire of a senior clergyman, who felt that the ruler has acted in an unfair manner.
Bishop Paul Tan, who heads the Johor and Malacca diocese, said the Sultan’s role was to protect Islam and not to make rules for those of other faiths.
Apa jaminan Bishop Paul Tan kalimah Allah ini tidak dipersendakan oleh penganut agama lain
“We non-Muslims have our own heads. Besides, our country is a constitutional or parliamentary democracy not a theocratic state i.e. Islamic state. Our Federal Constitution protects the rights of all our people, not only Muslims,” he told FMT.
Tan also pointed out that the matter was still pending appeal after the Kuala Lumpur High Court ruled on Dec 31, 2009 that the ban on non-Muslims using the word “Allah” was illegal.
“In all countries, except Malaysia, including Arab countries and Indonesia, there is no ban on Christians using the word ‘Allah’,” he said.
“If the Malaysian government forbids people of faiths other than those who profess Islam from using the word ‘Allah’, we would be the laughing stock of more enlightened people in other countries,” he added.
Tan also questioned if the faith of Malaysian Muslims were so fragile that it had to be protected because the use of this word by others would endanger their belief.
“I personally do not think so. How many leaders of this country have been educated in Christian schools and remained faithful to their Islamic faith? Many. By trying to forbid people of faiths other than those who profess Islam from using the word ‘Allah’ on the pretext of protecting the Muslims is actually casting aspersion on Malaysian Muslims for having a weak faith,” he said.
Furthermore, the bishop noted that there were at least three Surahs in the Quran – Surah 2:62,(the Cow), Surah 5:69 (The Table) and Surah 22:17 (the Pilgrimage) that say Jews, Christians and Sabeans believe in “Allah”.
“Sikhs have also clearly declared that their holy scriptures use the word ‘Allah’. There is only one God who created everyone and everything, there are no two Gods. It is only human beings who understand the Almighty in different and variegated ways,” he added.
sumber : FREEMALAYSIATODAY
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