Oct 12, 2015


The call to share the administration of annual hajj pilgrimage to facilitate the smooth running of the rituals may be a sincere request by those who were affected by the recent mishaps. However, it is a privilege given by God to the natives of Makkah which no mortals can challenge. One may like or dislike the present rulers of Saudi Arabia for various reasons, but that does not mean that they are incapable of managing the hajj. Year after year they have shouldered heavy responsibilities in organising this significant ritual all in love of Allah and His Messenger. 

Yes others can share in the administration of the hajj by organising themselves with proper knowledge of the rituals by understanding the distinction between wujub (obligation) and fadl (merit) by scheduling their activities in the jamrahs that may reduce the recurrence of such mishaps. I feel that Muslim countries and societies can learn from Malaysia and Singapore as to how they systematically conduct this holy exercise. The preparation the authorities put in to ensure the smooth conduct of hajj is amazing. There is nothing wrong in learning from them. 

Another important thing I would suggest to those intending pilgrims not to bring their mundane political thoughts and activities to the holy land. God will be ashamed of it. Devote yourselves to serve Allah in His precinct with full devotion to Him and enjoy the company of His beloved Messenger and his companions. Stop politics from polluting the sanctity of His Holy Land. Go there with open heart so that He will fill it with His blessings and love for your brothers.

Oct 10, 2015


At least for once Kerry is right in stating the obvious that the Syrian refugees must be welcomed. As a migrant nation that robbed the natives of their rights, he has called for maintaining its status as the migrant capital of the world. It is better if America and its fellow Western colluders and conspirators do absorb these people and, in fact the entire nations they have ruined, by granting the vanquished people of the destroyed countries, dual citizens. In this way America may not be seen as an occupying power or as the root cause of the trouble. Instead the people thus destroyed will feel that they have been taken in as co-equals through this destruction. They should be given equal status to vote and decide on their future, as their country will become another state of the great Unites States, adding more starts on the flag. Thus it would be good if people of Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya and now Syria are granted this dual citizenship. There wont be any need for these refugees to run away from the difficulties they encounter in trying to cross into Europe or for that matter perish on sea. I hope Kerry will advance this fresh thinking to his fellow conspirators in the White House. 


Oct 9, 2015


The unfortunate stampede and its preceding crane mishap that killed nearly a thousand Guests of Allah in His Holiest Land has landed two competing neighbors in the Middle East in trouble with one another. The Shi'ite Iran and the Wahabite Saudis are on war path over these unfortunate incidents. One saying these are Divine acts, as there was no intention to harm the pilgrims, as the facilities are expanding and elaborate constructions are being done to facilitate the seamless flow of the pilgrims in performing their religious obligations, while the other views it is as human machination masquerading under fatalism. There are reasons for suspecting the occurrence of human error in such a scale unless it is a well-calculated move to harm people whom one hates. This is what Iran is driving at. No matter what one may think of these unfortunate incidences, hajj is not the time to think or talk about politics. All pilgrims who have perished in these incidences were martyrs and they got the highest honor of attaining that martyrdom during the performance of their religious duties. What else one can ask for?

This, however, does not mean a thorough investigation on these two incidences be halted, lest many more will be coming to die in the holy land and looking forward to such incidences from repeating. It is timely if the Custodian of the Holy Land commission a high-level investigation team to determine the causes for these two calamities.  

Aug 8, 2015


Watching Bill Cosby Show weekly kept me laughing for the whole week. His openness in engaging his 'family' members' various social relations and the manner of moralising his judgement on them makes one to find some comfort in American moral musing. No one would have thought this fine and popular comedian had a shady past and was weak below his naval. What really surprises me is that it took so long for the American public to question his moral standing. Is it because those who were affected by his sexual harassment want to make money from this super rich comedian or is it because he started speaking black politics in the wake of growing anti-black sentiments in America with the increased killing of blacks, or was he accused of creating a new breed of blacks who think they are whites?


Jul 12, 2015


"Dear Past, Thanks for the Lessons. Dear Future, I am ready" thus read the caption on the tee shirt worn by a Turkish lady who killed her husband for violating her dignity by suggesting her to be forced into prostitution. What she did was the right thing. She should go scot-free for protecting her dignity and honor. The strength of her case lies in the fact that she filed police reports in the past, but it seems nothing has stopped her ex from harming her. 

In a patriarchal Muslim society it is always the female who are always punished for sexual crime. We read about "honor killing" where the relatives of a women kill her for bringing disgrace to her family. Sometimes even the parents themselves do such killing. This is unfair and unjust when the fault is not with her. Even if the fault is with her there is no justification to take her life. She can be divorced and let the court decide her future.

In the case of this brave Turkish lady she did everything to protect her honor. This should be considered as act in self-defense and she must be acquitted. What this incident has taught us is that even in marriage honor takes precedence over love. I hope more women will muster their courage to defend themselves. Certainly she has learned lesson from the past and she is ready for the future. Hope you folks understood her message!


Jul 3, 2015


The participation of Muslim women in sports has been highly contested by many conservative Muslims for far too long. But many have found some comfort in allowing women to participate as part of representing their nations in international competitive sports events provided they are decently covered. Those brave Muslim women who participated in such sports have not forsaken their religious requirements by dispensing off essential clothes in their pursuit to strike gold for their countries. To them covering their honor and dignity is more important than winning medals be they gold. They did not hide behind rules and regulations made by people who want to dishonor woman by seeing more of her flesh in the name of appreciating her skills. I find this utterly disgusting when the same organiser allowed men to wear in full whereas women have to bare the most. This only indicates on the values these organisers pursue and the position they accord to women in their daily narratives.

I find the correlation between performance and dress rather simplistic. Of course one cannot perform such delicate movements with jubba on! At least the controversial Muslim female gymnast could have worn a legging underneath the sports attire she was, presuming, asked to wear. I saw the female hockey teams (which included both Muslims and non-Muslims) in the SEA game adorning the legging underneath their miniskirts, which was indeed a remarkable improvement from their previous sportswear.  Even the male gymnasts wore in full, covering their legs. It is not that one has to wear only leotard and not unitard in performing the movements. Even contortionists wear unitards and they make more complex movements than the gymnasts. Thus the gymnast's attire issue could be a question of choice rather than an imposition by the organiser, where the gymnasts' team has no say in it.

The way the international press has played up this issue is as though the so-called moderates have no qualm in showing a bit or more of female flesh for the sake of national glory. It is only the religious scholars who are accused of ogling at the female gymnast' nether region, instead of appreciating the skills displayed by her. In condemning this 'narrow perspective' many eminent personalities had argued that one has to look beyond the attire issue, for the gymnast has indeed brought glory and fame to the country. It was indeed a patriotic act! Some even called on the authorities to reward the gymnast and recognise her as the Muslim Woman of the Year.

Certainly her feats is a remarkable one. No one denies what she has achieved. But those who criticized her too had their genuine concerns. But what took place was simply a mulla-bashing by the so-called moderates who conjure that showing a bit of flesh would make them look moderate and by showing a bit more would make them look liberal! This is ridiculous. What they have ignored is the element of shame which Islam preaches. Even the blessed Prophet is reported to have said: فإن الحياء من الإيمان "Certainly shame is part of faith". What all these so-called voices of moderation has forgotten is the notion of shame. No point talking about "maruah" (dignity in Malaynised Arabic) of bangsa (community in Malay) or negara (country in Malay) when some of these baruah (rascals in Malay) chose to ignore the dignity of their women in pursuit of winning some gold medals. Is this gold more important than dignity? Would they allow their women to participate in nude competition if it promises more gold for the country? Where is shame?

I grew up with the image of Nadia Comanacei's feat of perfect 10 in her 1976 Olympic when she represented her native Romania. Her breath-taking performance mesmerized the world audience. I was 13 and when I saw a 15 year-old Nadia performing so bravely I wondered what was not impossible for her. Even then I was taken aback by the attire she was wearing and I tried to shield away from looking at her performance again fearing that it would infringe the prohibition on looking at the aurat of a stranger, be that stranger is a Muslim or not. This does not mean Muslims should shun such beautiful and delicate movements that form part of an elaborate and rigorous exercise to keep oneself fit. Some of the Muslim organisations in their criticisms of this issue have proposed that Muslims confine to few sports such as equestrian, archery and swimming to keep in compliance with Prophetic approval. I would encourage Muslim participation in all sports, but within the confines of their religious values.

What this issue has raised is an important question on the absence of proper people with religious values present in sports councils so as to appraise sport officials of the moral concerns involved in participating in such competitive sports which do not take into consideration the values of dignity. It is sad that Asians have lost their rich values and the dignity they accord to their women by cheaply exposing them in public all in the name sports. If there is a study on the influence of sports attire on the performance of the gymnast I am sure the result will be a resounding no since there are far better performance done with proper attire on.

My request for the religious authorities who have vowed to review the case is to insist on having shari'ah advisers in the panel or council of sports institutions to guide the officials so that they will not be misguided in their judgement and decision. Certainly shari'ah has a role even in the conduct of sports!

Allah Knows Best!

             ANN'S ROOT

Jun 14, 2015


China has a frosty relation with its Muslim population since long, despite the initial welcome it accorded to Muslim traders to settle down in Chinese territories. Despite the oppressive, suppressive and repressive tactics the evangelical cultural revolutionists pursued in cleansing China of foreign ideologies, Islam and Muslims survived the odds and have emerged as sincere and loyal citizens of China who take pride in  being Muslims and Chinese together. When I visited China in 2013 I was pleasantly surprised to see the relative "freedom" accorded to Muslims to practice their religion without much interference from the state institutions. But recently Chinese government has upped its ante against Muslims, particularly with the Uighurs of Xinjiang, by preventing Muslims from adhering to their basic needs of keeping beard or wearing hijab. The reason given for such rulings is to keep China out of the reach of religious zealots who hide behind religious symbolism and piety. Moreover with the spread of American inspired and funded terrorism taking roots in many parts of the Muslim world that work to destabilize the existing order of things for want of better stooges who would lick the feet of the zionist-masters of America, the action taken by the Chinese authorities to portray Muslims in progressive sense should be welcomed by all those who understand the fact that the devil always targets the pious ones. I am not contesting the legality or otherwise of keeping beard or wearing hijab. But what I am concerned is the misuse of piety. It is a pity that many have misplaced piety in place of sincerity. I for one keep my beard because it adds value to my personality. I would certainly not lose my life over beard.


Now it is becoming clear that China is cracking on the so-called 'Wild Imams' who are torch bearers of Islam and Muslims in the restive Xinjiang. I am not sure whether this act of subjugation of the Muslims by denying them the right to practice their religious duties will in anyway help China case in the Muslim world. It is evident that China is not in need of Muslim world, as most of these countries are backward in many ways, but that does not mean that it can discount on their sensitivities towards their oppressive brethren in Xinjiang. No amount of pressure or forced subjugation of Muslims will yield the results China desires. The more pressure it applies on the Muslims the more it will pay in coming years. I am reminded of the 1975 Sha Dian incident where 3000 over well-equipped PLA soldiers were killed by the the peasants who fought them with machetes and other home-made farm equipments all because the then Chinese regime insulted the Muslim sensitivities by desecrating the masjids and comparing Muslims to pigs. I hope the present leaders will learn from the past and steer away from such incriminalising acts just because they have the brute force. Any continuation of this oppressive policy will have its far reaching implications that may undermine China's international overtures. It is better for the Chinese leaders to tread this sensitive terrain carefully otherwise they slip into the ravines of self-ruin. 

Any forceful act to deculturalize the Muslims and to turn them away from their religious beliefs and convictions will not succeed because Muslims have the resilience to overcome such oppressions and they will emerge stronger and more determined. I am reminded here of the hudaybiyyah incidents when the blessed Prophet was prohibited from performing hajj for the year. The Prophet accepted the condition and instructed his companions to perform it the following year. What followed was a clear victory for the Muslims. Now given the psychic of the Chinese officials I am sure they think that by preventing Muslims from displaying such religious commitment, they have succeeded. They are absolutely wrong, for the religion has allowed Muslims the flexibility to function within the confines of the system. Muslims will emerge stronger no matter what pressure the system places on them. 

As for the beard issue it would be better if the Chinese authorities  should install statues of Confucius and Mencius and the great thinker of the Chinese civilization without beard. Otherwise people get confused. Even many of their gods spot beard and that too longer than the Muslims. China should start a campaign of cleaning its past image by shaving the beards of its past icons.

It comes as a pleasant surprise for the Chinese authority that even the mufti of Saudi Arabia has issued a fatwa permitting the Saudi soldiers fighting the Yemenis Muslims not to fast the Ramadan fast as they are engaged in holy war (jihad). When such idiotic statement comes out from the mouth of such an irresponsible person what can the Muslims expect from non-Muslim countries like China which has prevented Muslims in the restive Xinjiang from fasting fearing that such a religious obligation may add to rise of Islamic fervor that has been hijacked by those Muslims trying to undermine Chinese rule? I have confirmed from friends that this restriction is only for Muslims in Xinjiang. Muslims in other parts of China are not affected by this. However, the Chinese authorities have restricted the free movement of Muslims from one place to another by confining them to their respective native towns. Muslims are forcefully sent back to their native places.