No Hudud please, We’re Malaysians


November 1, 2011

http://www.thestar.com.my

SHARING THE NATION

No Hudud please, We’re Malaysians

By Zainah Anwar (10-02-11)

ARE our politicians plain bad, crazy or stupid? In this divisive, corrosive, cynical political climate of ours, if I were the Opposition, I would jump and present my party as the party of first and obvious choice for the electorate. I would have not only welcomed the Prime Minister’s bold announcements in repealing those repressive laws and states of emergency, I would also up the ante and begin a public debate on how we as citizens should exercise and enjoy our Constitutional guarantees of fundamental liberties.

I would be planning over the next few months on how to build public opinion to hold the Government accountable and ensure that whatever alternative national security or public order laws that might emerge will uphold my fundamental freedoms.

I would want to make it politically very costly for the Government if it falls short or back-pedal on the promises of democratic reform it has made.

Instead, what do we get? An offer of the hudud law and its grim serving of chopped-off Muslim hands and feet, and stoning to death! What kind of future is that?

And we have politicians, who supposedly hold the mantle of leadership, who simply and continually miss the point.

“It’s okay to implement the hudud law because it doesn’t affect non-Muslims.” So it’s okay for Muslims to be brutalised?

See what happens when the first Muslim hand gets chopped off for stealing a motorbike. What if a medical team is on standby to gather the chopped-off hand and the victim and run to Terengganu or fly to KL for the hand to be stitched back?

What if the thief was with a Chinese or Indian accomplice who was sentenced only to a few months’ imprisonment under the Penal Code while the Malay thief is now disabled and unable to get a job, and be forever publicly stigmatised?

Or really, could this be a conspiracy to make the Malays permanently physically disabled in order to justify affirmative action in perpetuity? I wonder.

“Non-Muslims should shut up because it doesn’t affect them.” But they are Malaysian citizens who have every right to speak up on laws that allow for brutal and inhumane punishments against their fellow citizens, the majority population to boot.

Who wants to live in such a society when your neighbour, your friend, or your fellow citizen are subject to a cruel legal system?

How could I live with my conscience if I were a Chinese who has witnessed a rape, but my infidel evidence would not be accepted under the hudud law? No, I cannot keep quiet and accept such a law.

“Muslims who are not experts on Islam should shut up”. Then please take religion out of the public sphere and make it private between us and God. But not when I can be flogged 80 lashes for qazaf (slanderous accusation) if I report I have been raped and am unable to produce four pious and just Muslim males who witnessed the rape.

On top of that, my rape report could also be taken as confession of illicit sex and I could be charged for zina. And even if I could produce the four men, I would be torn apart wondering why four supposedly pious and just men watched me being raped.

And God forbid if I was single and became pregnant because of the rape. I would be charged for zina and lashed 100 times because my pregnancy is regarded as  evidence of illicit sex.

The burden is on me, not the state, to prove I was indeed raped. The evidential requirements make this impossible. And the accused rapist will be free from any hudud punishment by simply denying the rape.

And we are all supposed to shut up? No wonder some of our political leaders are bent on their so-called “Islamic state” and “Islamic law” project because it is so easy to fly the flag of religion and silence dissenting voices.

Even of their political opponents – many of whom can only summon the courage to claim: “I am not against the Hudud law, but the time and conditions are not right to implement it.” There are hundreds of commands, exhortations, values and principles in the Quran that we ignore or violate on a daily basis.

The command for us to be kind and compassionate at all times, the duty of a man to provide and protect his wife and children, the obligation of a leader to be just and fair in his ruling are just a few of these.

And what does an Islamist party prioritise as the hallmark of its piousness? The Hudud law. Instead of having the political courage to say no to the Hudud law, once and for all on so many available grounds – Islamic, constitutional, human rights principles, lived realities – so many of their political opponents dither and hedge.

It is so tiresome that we the rakyat are subject to this again and again. Sisters in Islam wrote letters to the editor, published a book and submitted a memorandum to the Government, all objecting to the PAS attempts to introduce the Hudud law in Kelantan and Terengganu in 1993 and 2002 respectively.

When PAS recently announced it was shifting from its push for an “Islamic state” to a “welfare state”, many thought the leadership finally realised that its future lies with social justice transformation, not with a punitive and joyless Islam of gloom and doom.

On some issues, it was even looking more progressive than UMNO. But its Hudud law pronouncements have jolted us back to reality. So many in the PAS leadership and its rank and file remain stuck in medieval times, unable to imagine what justice should mean to an Islamist party in the 21st century and unable to envision what it means to be Muslim in a modern, democratic, progressive multi-ethnic, multi-religious Malaysia today.

Footnote: I just noticed this article in the Columnist section of The Star (www.thestar.com.my). It is written by a Malaysian public intellectual, Zainah Anwar of the Sisters in Islam, for whom I have the highest regard.

A prolific writer and author, Zainah has the unique quality about her: she is articulate and has lots of conviction and guts to take issues on like Hudud and the status of Malaysian women. She writes in a very highly readable style and conveys her message to her readers with such gusto and elegance.

Thank you, Zainah. And shame on PAS, Dr. Ridhuan Tee Abdullah, and others who are promoting hudud failing to recognise that Malaysia  is a plural society and we are all Malaysians.–Din Merican

52 thoughts on “No Hudud please, We’re Malaysians

  1. well, the non-muslims were told to shaddup simply because the majority of the muslims chose to keep quiet?…silence is consent?

  2. Everybody must stand up. Even non-Muslims have conscience and have mouths to speak up for what is right. Sorry, HurricaneMax, I am unable to accept your explanation. No one has the right, for example, to tell me to shut up when I feel I am right. –Din Merican

  3. ARE our politicians plain bad, crazy or stupid?

    Dear Zainah, the answer is Yes! Yes! and Yes!

    and I think you forgot to mention that you are talking about PAS and Nik Aziz.

  4. “And even if I could produce the four men, I would be torn apart wondering why four supposedly pious and just men watched me being raped.” – Zainah

    The mind boggles, Zainah.

    C’mon GUYS, I think it’s time to stop these good and pious men from watching our Sisters in Islam being raped. Be brave. Rise up and declare that the law is flawed.

  5. “ARE our politicians plain bad, crazy or stupid?”

    I would say worse, that they are sly and evil.

    The government has just raised the ante on PAS. It is a public relations ploy to show that they are just as clean and religiosity correct .Hudud implementation is their answer to evade the rakyat’s demand for the government to fight systemic corruption. They know that Malaysians in general will not go with Hudud implementation and hence eventually, nothing will be done about corruption.

    What should be happening but not happening, is a referendum to get the nation’s consensus on not just the Huddud issue but on other pertinent issues such as the elimination of systemic corruption, human rights, fair election and democratic reforms.

    If the government decides to ignore the earnest requests of the rakyat, BERSIH and NGOs should again organise a mass petition to be presented to the Agung to advise HRH of his rakyat’s requests.

    YES, the rakyat wants critical reforms; YES, we want to eliminate corruption and crime but NOT the Hudud way – a medieval law more appropriate for desert tribes in the Middle East .
    We need a more universal law more appropriate to our plural society which consists of multiple cultures; laws and criminal justice that apply to one and all.

    And what the opposition should be doing is for PAS to remove it foot off the gas pedal to allow DAP and PKR to put the pressure on the government instead, by showing the rakyat what and how a Pakatan Rakyat government in power, intends to do, to eliminate systemic corruption, introduce human rights, electoral and democratic reforms.

  6. You guys can’t be serious about this ‘who-dunnit’ law. I just do not see it happening. So what is it all about? A lot of hot air and flexing of muscles by religious bigots and wannabe champions of Islam and shariah law, and worse – endless pontifications by the loony fringe of PAS and UMNO for a step nearer to making Malaysia into an Islamic state.

    Some 40% are Muslims are non-Muslims. That is not going to happen.

    It is just a rallying call to get the Malays to unite. Will it succeed? I do not think so.

  7. No one has the right, for example, to tell me to shut up when I feel I am right. –Din Merican

    The best response to this would be to say, “Make me!”

  8. They should put this on the ballot and let the voters decide.
    All candidates standing for elections must state their stand on Hudud and let the voters decide. In this way even before Hudud is tabled in Parliament the public will already know the outcome unless the MP’s change their stand.

  9. PUAN ZAINAH… A lot of us too were hoping that 2008 would prompt the Opposition to “JUMP AND PRESENT MY PARTY AS THE PARTY OF FIRST AND OBVIOUS CHOICE…” Alas, they have been such a disappointment… and a golden opportunity has been all but lost.

  10. Hudud???

    It is all stinking Hot AIR farted by the Kutty Supremo and then UMNO used a pump to blow the fart into balloon-head of PAS’s Nik Aziz.

    And every Malaysian, including readers here, is smelling the Kutty Supremo’s fart on the issue.

    A fart to distract to the main issue: we are having economic problems and rising national debt.

  11. I’ve been dead for a year now; and I’m still waiting to see my 72 virgins. Isn’t that what hudud is all about?? God’s punishment for rapists is to have their dicks shortened each time a rape is committed. For those who show restraint, they are rewarded with 72 virgins? Where are my virgins??

  12. “What if the thief was with a Chinese or Indian accomplice who was sentenced only to a few months’ imprisonment under the Penal Code while the Malay thief is now disabled and unable to get a job, and be forever publicly stigmatised.”

    Never heard of Article 8 sub-clause (1) of the Federal Malaysian Constitution 1957? All persons are equal before the law and entitled to the equal protection of the law. So no can do. The Constitution is the supreme law of the land: Article 4. And all other laws are void to the extent of its inconsistency.

    Remember that one?

  13. The Constitution is the supreme law of the land: Article 4. And all other laws are void to the extent of its inconsistency.- Mr Bean

    Says who?
    – The Judiciary says NO way… the Federal Court is the supreme law of the land,
    – UMNO and Perkasa think the Constitution is a joke
    – the monarchy ( read Perak Palace etc) thinks the constitution is “lese majeste” and
    – the majority of the pakcik and makcik believes the constitution is about the right of UMNO to govern this country.

    If you ask the rural folks about Article 4… “TICKLE WHAT” ???

    To UMNO-BN and some royal palaces, the Constitution is a damn nuisance.

  14. Mr Bean

    Perhaps if you follow the direction of Kutty Supremo’s fart on the hudud, you might find your way to the 72 virgins.

  15. “And God forbid if I was single and became pregnant because of the rape. I would be charged for zina and lashed 100 times because my pregnancy is regarded as evidence of illicit sex.”

    Rape is defined by law as penetration without consent. Four guys watching you are willing to testify that at first you indeed did not give consent; but half way through the act you ceased to struggle and appear to give consent. So initial penetration is without consent, and how does shariah law treat consent without fresh penetration? Do you have to withdraw and then penetrate again?

  16. So initial penetration is without consent, and how does shariah law treat consent without fresh penetration? Do you have to withdraw and then penetrate again?- Mr Bean

    That jambu Saiful might have the answer and that loudmouth mufti from Perak will cite the correct verse to clarify on the “penetrate-withdraw-penetrate” issue. Isn’t that the definition of “pumping”?

  17. ‘White Shade of Pale’ is a classic and an old favorite of old geezers like Semper Fi, Tok Cik and yours truly. We never seem to have enough of it. This song now belongs to the ages.

  18. “ARE our politicians plain bad, crazy or stupid?”
    Zainah Anwar

    What do you think Zainah? All of the above. frightening.

  19. “The majority of the pakcik and makcik believes the constitution is about the right of UMNO to govern this country.” Frank

    And the remainder of the population thinks the Constitution is good only as toilet paper.

  20. and BTW Zainah, that is why you are not the PM. It doesnt suit the agenda. And in this oppressive interpretation of the Koran, your gender will never be allowed to become PM.

  21. When a Law or any man-made ” law ” is breached epistemologically so-called, it is then UNABLE to withstand human scrutiny, reasoning faculty & intelligence, resulting in a break-down. Because epistemology itself deals or delves into philosophy of knowledge in itself, so it must withstand scrutiny.

    So here, Ai Tze & Molly Teh, Zainah Anwar and Sisters-In-Islam have argued not only logically but very accurately the miss-match or ” mix-up” between the substantive & the evidential aspects of the so-called Hudud application – which in effect demonstrates that IT IS THE VICTIM (the Female who is attacked) who become the ” Criminal” to suffer blatant injustice in the hands of a man-made law which is more than flawed. The vigorous attempts to try & justify it by ” Religious” Edicts is indeed a deception.

  22. Zainah, why don’t you go see Nik Aziz and discuss the matter? Maybe he has answers for you. Until you understand better, stop talking about it.

  23. nasir, why don’t YOU answer Zainah, if you think you are a smarty ass.

    If not, leave your brain behind between your legs. Or shuddup if you have no clue on how to respond to Zainah’s comments.

  24. Frank, frankly I have little knowledge about this matter. Therefore, I cannot answer her. I believe Nik Aziz knows better. Therefore it is only proper that she talks to Nik Aziz. Dont you seek clarification in a situation where things dont make sense to you? Like I said she may understand better. And get us all to understand better too.

    Issues like these can never get resolved – people just give their opinions, without having enough knowledge and there being no intention to resolve them. So it goes on and on.

    (And I am a Muslim; I’m not able to counter your “smarty ass” and “leave your brain behind between your legs” comments. And my parents never taught me these things)

  25. I don’t think Zainah Anwar has made enough and sincere effort to study the religion. Her insincerity is very telling and her status as a practicing Muslim is very much in doubt when she resorts to poking fun at Islamic law. I have not heard of Christians, Hindus or Buddhists doing the same in respect of their religions.

    Compare her statement with that of a non-Muslim lawyer who studied the subject thoroughly as reported in Utusan Malaysia on 5th March, 1987. And that bring into question the propriety of Zainah and her “sisters” to go on representing Islam and causing confusion along the way.

    UNDANG2 CIPTAAN TUHAN LEBIH LENGKAP DARI CIPTAAN MANUSIA – HAI KIANG

    Oleh: Mohd Noor Che Mat

    KLANG 4 Mac – Seorang peguam bukan Islam, Encik Lim Hai Kiang menegaskan, undang-undang Islam ciptaan Tuhan adalah lebih lengkap daripada undang-undang ciptaan manusia yang lebih mementingkan prosedur dari kebenaran.

    Dalam undang-undang British yang digunakan di negara ini, katanya, seorang yang sememangnya bersalah boleh terlepas semata-mata kerana sebab-sebab teknik berbanding dengan undang-undang Islam yang bertujuan membuktikan kebenaran, bukan kemenangan mana-mana pihak

    Beliau berkata, undang-undang Islam sepatutnya telah lama dilaksanakan di negara ini menggantikan undang-undang British sejajar dengan kedudukan agama Islam sebagai agama rasmi negara.

    Menurutnya, adalah sesuatu yang malang dan menyedihkan bila undang-undang Islam dianggap hina dan rendah tarafnya berbanding dengan undang –undang British (Common Law) di sebuah negara Islam.

    Undang-undang Islam, ujar Encik Lim, merupakan ciptaan Tuhan yang sudah pasti lebih lengkap daripada undang-undang ciptaan manusia ……

    UTUSAN MALAYSIA 05-03-1987

  26. MAWA,
    As i understand Zainah Anwar, she is not questioning about Undang-undang Islam, she is merely demonstrating solely HOW the application of ‘Hudud’ leads to ridiculous conclusion that after all the process of ” evidence”, the VICTIM who has been attacked, is finally turned as a ” criminal” ( for having “illicit ” sex !) and flogged.
    Hai Kiang may be talking about the true authentic Islamic law based on the Holy Book, even then there are a lot of misinterpretations by Ulamas…(question of ‘tafsiran’).

    Are you sure ” Hudud” is in accordance with Islamic Law, if so, please ask Tok Gurus where is the ” Source” ? Many have tried in vain to find authenticity in the Qur’an. – but we have to be mindfull on this, because it might lead to “bida’ah” of God’s law.
    How can it be, when in Kenya, Nigeria, Somalia, for the minutest say, stealing a chicken, the punishment is amputation ?
    Just recently the Syariah Court ordered a woman to be flogged that although she was fully garbbed with head-scarf, the judge sais wearing a jeans is forbidden in Islam. Yet in another case, the Highest Syariah Court passed an edict (fatwa) that in Islam a women is forbidden to wear bras. So if someone is caught, will her breast be lopped-off ? Are these Hudud things really & truly Islamic law, or are they “man-made” laws ?

  27. Abnizar7,

    It is useless to argue with MAWA… the fact that he quoted that racist and anti-Christian newspaper Utusan Malauysia, says a lot about him and his inclinations.

    He is just another narrow-minded Muslim who thinks he is holier than other Muslims.

    Don’t waste your breath with people who quote from Utusan Malaysia. Waste time.

  28. Abnizar7>

    If Zainah Anwar is not questioning about “Undang-undang Islam”, then what is she questioning when the heading of her writing clearly reads “No hudud please, we are Malaysians.”?

    The word “hudud” appears many times in the Quran. Too bad if, by chance, you can’t read Quran in Arabic because, in that case, you won’t be able to find it there. There are three forms of punishment in Islam: Qisas (applicable in the case of murder where the proven killer must also be killed unless the victim’s next of kin – not the Pardons Board, mind you – forgives him or accepts a settlement); hudud (applicable such as in the case of theft) and takzir (applicable in cases where stringent requirements of evidence for hudud cannot be met).

    The implementation of hudud in the case of theft has its divine authority in the following verses of Surah Al Maidah (Chapter 5) in Arabic, of course, and translate into English thus:

    “38 As to the thief, male or female, cut his or her hands: a punishment by way of example, from God, for their crime: and God is Exalted in power. 39 But if the thief repents after his crime, and amends his conduct, God turns to him in forgiveness; for God is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful. 40 Know you not that to God (alone) belongs the dominions of the heavens and the earth? He punishes whom He pleases, and He forgives whom He pleases: and God has power over all things.”

    Amputation for stealing a chicken? I am sorry, never heard of that. A copy of the judgment or a copy of the Law Journal in which this case, and other cases you mentioned are cited would be more convincing. The point is, never trust the media too much. But from what I learned, theft of things of small value doesn’t merit amputation. Amputation is reserved for hardened criminals and the material stolen must be of high value such as, say, US $150,000 Birkin handbag, for example. For petty thieves who have nothing to offer in mitigation takzir, and not hudud, is applicable where the judge can use his discretion to mete out lesser punishment as he deems fit. Hudud is also not applicable where the thief goes into a house whose owner had negligently left the door or the gate ajar for him to enter.

    Our friend Lim Hai Kiang has taught us one thing: it requires knowledge, and not ignorance, to appreciate Islamic law. We need to go back to classrooms or lecture halls to get the necessary knowledge on Islamic law and all its ramifications and that knowledge must be acquired from sincere, knowledgeable and practicing Muslim scholars. Not from any disciple of J. Schultz, Goldziher, Hans Kung, Rashad Khalifa or other orientalists whose mission it is to create revulsion against Islam in the hearts and minds of non-Muslims and to embarrass Muslims themselves about their beliefs, traditions and history and, finally, lead them to apostasies.

    Often times, the religious card is played to make it appear as if the non-Muslims are united in the rejection of Islamic law – hence the caption: “No hudud please, we are Malaysians.” Not true. Out there, there are people of all religious denominations – Christians, Hindus, Buddhists and Sikhs -who lead a virtuous life and don’t indulge in vices. They have nothing to fear and they support hudud. On the other hand, there are nominal Muslims, Christians, Hindus, Buddhists and Sikhs alike who kill, steal, rob and swindle – you name it, they have done it – who will gang up and make sure the Islamic law will never see the light of day. Sadly, many of them are now in the corridors of influence and power.

    Back to Zainah Anwar. Zainah (or anybody else for that matter) may feel free to say anything against hudud now. But I wonder what happens if her house gets broken into and her valuables worth thousands or millions get stolen. Will she go on opposing hudud or will she now demands for the thief’s head?

  29. MiAWA, i thank you for your exegesis, but mine would be in a terse & condensed form ( coz it might be too lengthy). Also, its not arguing for arguement sake, but more of seeking as far as we can for ‘truth” which is always relative.
    Excuse me, i think you take the ‘literallist’ stand, but i am for the liberal stand-point : true, the Arabic/Qura’nic language is a very dense language, and this causes different shades of meanings & interpretations to different people…
    There is a tinge of ‘liberalism’ here : ‘ …killer must also be killed…” BUT next of kin can forgive…. etc. A fundamental Question, can another ” human” prevail over God’s law ?
    Surah AlMaidah you pointed out has divine authority. “38. As to the thief…cut off his hands..” 39. But if the thief repents after his crime, and ammends his conduct, God turns to him in forgiveness, for God is Oft-Forgiving, Most Mercifull….He punishes whom He pleases; and God has power over all things !. A fundamental Question : Whose power precedes, if the hands are cut-off, when can AlMighty show his Mercy ? ( period-need a short break)

  30. ( continued). “….theft of things of small value doest not merit amputation” . Exactly, But the problems relates to the mental make-up of people vested with ” power “. These bigots then become ‘demi-gods” and so what stops them (like in Kenya, Nigeria, Somalia) to cut-off hands EVEN in cases of peeping-toms catching couples for ‘Khalwat’ & similar “moral” crimes under Islamic law ? Even now, some Ulamas have proposed for policemen to go round to prevent crimes against “morality” – ie non-praying, non-fasting, non-drinking & close proximity…etc : What moral crimes under the law, but for demi-gods eager to lop-off hands…? – period

  31. You finally said, “…..takzir, and not hudud becomes applicable where the Judge can use DISCRETION to mete out lesser punishment as he DEEMS FIT….” So its the Judge’s discretion afterall, who is a human being…

    So my take on “liberal interpretation” is that whatever contained in preset-day Secular laws in reality EMANATED from Canonical laws : that is, from the time of Moses (pbh) ” Ten Commandments” : which are presently contained in the Penal Code or other secular laws ( from the Constitution) Eg. Murder, Rape, Robbery, Theft, Tresspas on properties & persons, scandals & defamatory conducts, , are indeed ” CONGRUOUS” if not identical, within the ” context” of Islamic Law as well. Because, it is the human Judge who sits in judgement , a DISCRETION is vested with him to impose between the maximum & minimum prescribed, which varies according to circumstances of each case before him. I mean they do OVERLAP what in the general body of Law prescribed from the Islamic perspective, and the Current Secular mode in force….
    Hope i’ve not digressed….

  32. Abnizar7,

    “Also, its not arguing for argument sake, but more of seeking as far as we can for ‘truth” which is always relative.”

    I like that line of yours about the search for truth. You have set a conducive atmosphere for intelligent discussion of the subject.

    Yes. What I am giving you is just the translation of the Quran, not the interpretation. For interpretation we have to rely, first and foremost, on the great prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) who was always divinely guided in all his utterances and actions. That means we have to refer to his “hadith”. And also on the works of the Islamic scholars (ulama) of yesteryears who had mastery of the Arabic language and had committed the whole of the Quran to memory. Not every Tom, Dick and Harry is qualified to do that.

    Retaliation and also forgiveness by a victim is actually an extension of God’s law. He says in Surah Al Maaidah: 45, the English translation of which is:

    “45. We ordained therein for them: ‘Life for life, eye for eye, nose for nose, ear for ear, tooth for tooth, and wounds equal for equal.’ But if anyone remits the retaliation by way of charity, it is an act of atonement for himself. And if any fail to judge by (the light of) what God has revealed, they are (no better) than wrong-doers.”

    Remitting the retaliation means giving forgiveness. Since it is too much to expect a dead victim to forgive or not to forgive his murderer , his next of kin – and not the Pardons Board – of course will have to decide whether to do or not to do so.

    PEMBUNUH DIAMPUN BAPA MANGSA.

    JEDDAH: Muhammad Saleh Al-Atwi yang dihukum bunuh kerana membunuh seorang remaja menangis pilu apabila bapa mangsa mengampunkannya ketika hukuman bakal dijalankan.

    Hammad ibn Ali Dhowaihi, bapa mangsa bunuh mengejutkan semua yang hadir di majlis itu apabila mengumumkan: “Saya mengampunkan pembunuh anak saya kerana saya inginkan ganjaran daripada Tuhan.”

    Muhammad Salleh dipenjara tiga tahun sebelum hukuman mati dijadual berlangsung semalam.

    Hammad menandatangani dokumen memaafkan Muhammad Saleh di Balai Polis Tabuk dan kediaman Ketua Hakim Sheikh Abdul Aziz Al-Humaid.

    “Ramai pihak meminta saya memaafkan pembunuh anak saya. Saya memaafkannya tanpa sebarang pampasan kebendaan. Saya hanya ingin keredaan Tuhan.

    “Namun saya minta beliau meninggalkan Tabuk supaya tiada ketegangan berlaku di masa akan datang” katanya. – Agensi.

    For the individual, God’s mercy is not in the context of this life but in the context of the next world or “akhirat” where God will preside and pass judgment whether someone should go to Paradise or to Hell. If he should go to Paradise then it is purely on God’s mercy alone and not because of anything else. So a criminal who submitted to punishment prescribed by God and repents afterward will have his sin written off and increase his chances to enter paradise.

    But for the society, God’s mercy will appear in the form of increased peace and security due to absence of crime. You can leave your gate open 24 hours a day without fear of your house being broken into; you can drive down the road without fear of being hit by a drunkard and you can walk anywhere and everywhere without fear of being robbed, raped or killed.

  33. MAWA, thank you.
    But despite what you say, i’ve The Essential Qura’an by Thomas Cleary a Lecturer/Prof in UK, who says the Qura’n cannot be ” translated” into any of the Wordly language/s, because in Arabic ” it is a very dense and an eliptical language ” (read Karen Armstrong as well) – translations may be ‘songsang’ but Interpretation can cause havoc ! Misinterpretations or even Misrepresentations….
    You havie cited specifically that precedent of Murder. In our present-day Civil or Secular jurisdiction, Murder with full intent, is definitely death : ie. same as in the Islamic ” the killer must be killed”. In Secular law, causing death through provocation, Self-defence & suuden fight becomes a Mitigating factor for which the punishment is reduced, at the DISCRETION of the Judge (full disclosure of circumstances & antecedents).
    You see Holy books/Testaments are books of Spirituality (rohaniat) – in this worldly reality, WHO INTERPRETS ? Human Judge, No ?
    Secular Laws have correctly prescribed the maximum & minimum – one should NOT be allowed to say, even for petty ‘Khalwat’ chop-off hands because of Hudud.
    One final critical point, the Learned Tun Hamid Mohammad, when he retired remarked that The Syariah Court can be MERGED into the Civil Court Total System ( as a Division of the High Court). ONLY in Malaysia, we have this so-called two parallel System.
    Let us see if this necessary. The Syariah Court merely hear Islamic Family Law concerning Matrimonial, Divorde & Maintainence, division of properties or Inheritance – very rarely about those ” moral crimes” Khalwat, beer-drinkinbg, non-fasting, non-prayers etc. Where are the Offences of Rape, Murder, Theft etc, etc heard & tried, if not in the Secular Courts. ie : Islamic criminal Offences MERGE with those in the Penal Code etc…
    Beg your pardon, to me all these ” confusions” arise because of Misinterpretations.
    All learned Muslims should support the call of Tun Hamid Mohammad – i feel

  34. Abnizar 7,

    I have to take some time to sort out your points in your last three threads.
    Surah Al Maidah (Chapter 5) verses 38-40, which I have already quoted in my previous thread, states that the cutting off hands as a punishment is only meant for thieves. Now you are telling me it is also applicable in khalwat cases and even in cases of non-praying, non-fasting and consumption of liquor. I wonder where did you get all these from. Newspapers? Magazines? Facebook?

    Whatever it is, it is important to check on our sources and not to just accept whatever we hear or whatever we read from the media hook, line and sinker.

    We must not forget that there are people, sometimes aided by treacherous Muslims, who are bent on giving the worst picture of Islam . They are the same people who give you the mental picture that once a thief is caught red-handed his hands would be chopped off there and then. The same people who give you the picture of a man dressed in white robe and a turban, holding the Quran with his left and the sword with his right hand going after the non-Muslims’ blood. See, how these wicked people who control the media can also control your mind and make you think in a certain way?

    God has warned us in the Holy Quran not to be gullible.

    “O you who believe! If a wicked person comes to you with any news, ascertain the truth, lest you harm people unwittingly, and afterwards become full of repentance for what you have done.” Surah Al – Hujurat: 6

    Sure, only in takzir the judge can use discretion but even then the Muslim judge cannot simply pass judgments according to his own whims and fancies. He has to abide by certain guidelines set up by the Islamic judiciary. Moreover, as a Muslim he has to be extremely careful not to do anything unjust to anyone or even to animals. There is a story narrated in a hadith about a woman who was consigned to the Fire for willfully allowing a cat to die in confinement. For an injustice committed to a cat, a woman goes to Hell. How about an injustice to fellow humans – never mind if his name is Ahmad, Ah Kow, Ramasamy or Ranjit Singh – don’t you think the perpetrator should go to Hell also? (There is something about ‘ketuanan Melayu’ here).

    The Muslim judge believes that he has to answer before his Creator in the Hereafter for all judgments he makes here. Such belief is embodied in his articles of faith.

    A Muslim’s articles of faith or “rukun iman” comprise belief in:

    1. Allah, the Unitarian God who neither begets nor is he begotten. He is the sole, supreme and all-powerful ruler of the universe whose word and authority cannot be questioned. He is the Lord on the Day of Judgment. He doesn’t share His kingdom with anyone or anything else. (From now on I am going to use the term Allah instead of God because “God” means different thing to different people.)

    2. The Angles, the invisible creatures of Allah created to perform various tasks, among which are the Recording Angels who are assigned to every human, to record his good as well as his bad deeds, no mater how small and no matter where he is, every second from the time he is born until the time he dies. The sum total of these pluses and minuses will determine whether he should go to Paradise or to Hell.

    3. The Books revealed to Allah’s prophets – Musa (Moses), Daud (David), Isa (Jesus) and Muhammad – peace be upon all of them. The books are Zabur (Psalms of David), Taurat (Torah), Injil and the Quran – the infallible Word of Allah. (Note: Injil is not translatable as Bible or vice versa because the Injil that Muslims must believe in is the one that was revealed to prophet Jesus in Aramaic or Old Hebrew – a language which is already dead and gone – whereas present day Bible has English, without the original text in Aramaic, for its master copy).

    4. The Messengers of Allah – hundreds of them. 25 have their names mentioned in the Quran namely Adam (Adam), Idris (Eunoch), Nuh (Noah), Hud (Heber), Saleh (Methusela), Ibrahim (Abraham), Lut (Lot), Ismail (Ishmael), Ishaq (Isaac), Yaakub (Jacob), Yusuf (Joseph), Daud (David), Sulaiman (Solomon), Musa (Moses), Harun (Aaron), Ayub (Job), Shu’aib (Jethro), Zulkifli (Isaiah/Ezekiel), Ilyas (Elijah), Alyasa’ (Elisha), Yunus (Jonah), Zakaria (Zacharias), Yahya (John the Baptist), Isa (Jesus) and the final messenger Muhammad (peace be upon all of them). Muslims need to be familiar with all these names.

    5. The Hereafter. A Muslim must believe that there is an eternal life after his death where he will be resurrected to enjoy eternal happiness or to suffer eternal misery depending on his performance while on earth.

    6. Predestination. That everything is predestined for him either in conditional form (mu’allaq) in definitive form (mubram).

    Every Muslim must have an unwavering belief in these articles of faith. Any expression of doubt, by words or by actions, may render him an apostate (Allah forbid!). Despite his protestation to the contrary, in the eyes of Allah he is no longer a Muslim and will be dealt with accordingly when the time comes for him to meet his Creator.

    So, the Muslim judge will have all these considerations, especially regarding his accountability, at the back of his mind when he uses his discretion in his judgment. Therefore I am struck by your statement that purportedly in Kenya, Nigeria and Somalia people get their hands cut off for committing khalwat. Again, I am asking – is this true or is it just a fragment of someone’s imagination?

    Another point you raised that is worth commenting on is about the character of the Quranic language. Quranic language, which is Arabic, is such that its fullest meaning is not easily accessible to the laymen without the help of competent interpreters . In order to interpret, one must have firm knowledge in disciplines such as Nahw (Arabic grammar); Asbabun Nuzul (circumstances surrounding the revelation of the Quranic verses); Ilmu l Balaghah (rhetoric) Ilmu s Sarf (morphology), Seerah Nabawiyah (history of the prophetic struggle) and many others. The Muslim scholars of yesteryears spent their lifetime studying all these. Those who want to project themselves as experts will have to do what those scholars did. The mere ability to read the English or Malay translation doesn’t qualify anyone to interpret the Quran and make pronouncements over issues such as hudud or other parts of the Islamic law.

    Unfortunately, there are nominal Muslims whose understanding of Islam is suspect despite their high academic credentials, those who obtained their PhD’s under the supervision of the orientalists, who go around promoting themselves as experts on Islam, casting doubt over hudud and other laws of the Quran. They are causing confusion to the Muslims and the non-Muslims alike.

    To simply say that hudud is not suitable for this country is tantamount to saying that Allah the Omniscience doesn’t know that there is such a country named Malaysia where people of various races and religions live. And if they say that Allah knows, then are they saying that Allah is cruel or unjust for imposing a law that is impossible to implement?

    “But it is possible that you dislike a thing which is good for you, and that you love a thing which is bad for you. But Allah knows, and you know not.”
    Surah Al-Baqarah: 216.

  35. i thought so, MAWA, from the beginning i gussed as much it will be very, very lengthy, so i intend to ‘cut it short’ (not cut-off hands!…please)

    1. ” supreme & all-powerfull ruler of the Universe” – yes we Muslims use “Allah” because you say ‘God” means different thing to different people. Nevertheless, the non-Muslims have a ” Religion” precisely because they too do believe in ” On High God ” – it MIGHT be presumptious for me to say, may be, its the vast majority of the Muslims THEMSELVES in the world who DO NOT KNOW ” Allah” that’s causing heartaches & huge problems everywhere. Eamples to illustrate :

    2. “Khalwat” in which i said “cut-off hands” – i think you don’t get the point. . In the minds of the AlQaedah & Talibans for eg: even without legislation, they are deep into “hudud”imbeded in their psyche/hype. Its the ‘human mind” if they get “power”, these people will use chopping off hands even for full-stops & commas. Eg : In Somalia, pmuslim women cannot wear jeans or bras, they get lashing/flogged. How ? to me its the virus-infected brains that have not the slighest clue about ordeals of life/living. ( If people believe in God, who CREATED the Universe, God AlMighty has ordained the “highest law” for Mankind to live in Peace & Order but for Man to “USE” it, he becomes a “monster’ – a demi-god.
    All the rest you have ennumerated from 3 to 7 – people of all OTHER Religions, have their own conscience to abide, because they do FEAR ” God”, so leave God to do His Judgement, not for Muslims. Surah Qulliya AyuHal Kafirun, stipulates very clearly ” no compulsion in Religion, unto you yours & unto me my religion”Long arguments here, but i am convinced the “Kafirs” or Infidels do NOT apply to them.
    That i must say is a distortion due to Misinterpretations…
    You are on the litteral, ( thesis), i am on the anti-thesis, ie : Strict law Syariah is the outer circle, but i insist, one must go into the ant-thesis – the Tsau’f, which is The Liberating Philosophical Islam – the rigidities get caught or stuck with full-stops & commas…not good for Muslims everywhere.

  36. Abnizar 7,

    The subject matter that we have picked up for discussion is Zainah Anwar’s article “No Hudud Please, We Are Malaysians.” We have so far dealt with it at length and I think the points raised are sufficient for anyone to draw a conclusion. So I suggest we now call it a day.

  37. Yes, guess you are right…..one final salvo !

    i realise that we all are ANGRY at the FEW in the top regime who are corrupted….we have to wait until things get ” errupted” like in the Middle East & Islamic nations, unless Malaysia & Indonesia be more sensible : Either good Governance free from corruption, or else, come a time….eruption !

    AlQaeda-ism & Taliban-ism definitely going the wrong-way….all the way
    Btw thanks for indulgence….

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