Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Lust to punish

Reference: The Malaysia Insider Kartika’s legacy to Malaysia

Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf is the Chairman of the Cordoba Initiative, an international organisation devoted to improving West-Muslim world relations, and author of “Islam, A Sacred Law, What Every Muslim Should know about the Shariah”.

He wrote in The Star on July 29, 2009 the following about Islam and its stand on the imbibing of alcohol:

“…Neither the Quran nor the Hadith invokes a penalty for alcohol consumption. The sin of consuming alcohol is described in the Quran in the mildest language of prohibition. When it comes to dietary laws, the Quran commands the believers in Sura 5:3: “forbidden (hurrimat) to you is the dead animal, loose blood, and the flesh of the pig.”

“… Some legal scholars suggest that the divine command ijtinab, to avoid something, is milder language than tahrim, prohibition. A Muslim consuming a glass of wine with a pork chop commits a more serious offence in eating pork; yet as there is no Quran or Hadith penalty for consuming pork, there is also none for alcohol consumption.”

If that’s the case, then how did the punishment for drinking alcohol come about?

Rauf wrote, “It occurred during the time of the second Caliph Umar b. al-Khattab. There was a companion of the Prophet (sahabi) who had fought on the Prophet’s side in his battles. A heavy drinker, he would walk the streets of Madina drunk at night and loudly shout scandalous things about people. The inhabitants of Madina complained, and Umar formed a committee to decide what to do.”

“Imam Ali, based on the man having committed slander, suggested the penalty for slander, whose maximum penalty is 80 lashes. Since that time, this has been considered the maximum penalty for alcohol consumption, based on utilising the Syariah concept of ta`zir (deterrence).”

Above underlining is mine

“I disagree with this being the mandatory sentence for the offence of wine consumption, because it is the maximum sentence for another, separate offence – slander – albeit committed under the influence of alcohol.”

So we learned the real reason for the punishment from a learned person like Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf. The punishment was really about 'slandering' rather than 'drinking alcoholic beverage'.

And in the meantime we get a local but seditious bloke, one who nearly caused racial-religious riots through unsubstantiated information (later proven to be not true at all, meaning they were fibs) a couple of years back, who insisted it should have been 80 lashes instead of a mere 6 – see Malaysiakini Mufti: It should be 80 lashes, so why the fuss?

Hmmm, how many strokes does one get for telling fibs (surely 'slandering' as defined by Imam Ali), that could have gotten innocent people killed through riots?

80 lashes? Why not, and do I need to tell you who that bloke is?

But he is not alone. PAS Youth wants Kartika punished! Why am I not f* surprised?

And so do PAS' two most conservative ulamas with an un-Islamic bent for ‘ethnic unity’, Pak Haji Hadi and Awang and his No 2 man, Nasharuddin Mat Isa.

To reiterate, Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf said the punishment was more about slander than partaking of alcohol. And the Prophet Mohamd (pbuh) said: "Every important matter which is not begun with, ‘In the Name of Allah, the Compassionate, the Merciful’ is maimed."

So why have PAS leaders seen fit not to emulate what the Prophet (pbuh) said, that when one talks in the name of Allah (swt), one should be mindful of His compassion and mercy? These PAS bloke haven’t shown one microscopic iota of either quality for Kartika Sari Dewi Shukarno.

Well, Art Harun described it well in The Malaysian Insider’s article
Will the real PAS please stand up? where he wrote:

PAS’s real nature is more like the Lernaean Hydra, the fearsome water serpent with nine heads.

This is a party which is so full of itself. It is filled with people who believe that Islam needs their help and assistance all the time.
With people who believe that God is so meek and weak that He needs defending by them.

Ya, I agree with Art Harun's explanation from what I have observed, that many PAS people possess such a mentality.

But the strange thing is this. When the situation suits them, these very same people would embrace liberalism and would dance on the same dance floor with the likes of DAP and Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim's PKR. Not only that, it would have no qualms in entering into a pact — a binding promise the breach of which, in Islam, is a sinful act — with PKR and DAP in order to form a political alliance for the general election. And they would sing liberalism all the way to various state legislative assemblies and even Parliament.

Well, it is hard for a tiger to lose its stripes. Deep inside and within, PAS is still PAS. History would show that they have jumped in and out of the Umno bandwagon for the sake of nothing more than political aspirations and desires. It is almost a vehicle for political expediency.

Ho hum, hyper hypocrites!

Friedrich Nietzsche once said: "Distrust anyone in whom the desire to punish is powerful".

I believe the unseemly lust to punish, as exhibited by PAS leaders, very much against Allah’s (swt) twin pillars of compassion and mercy, is the covert need to slap down those who dare to imperil the punisher's status (his edicts, beliefs) and position in society (his authority, ulama-ship).

It's the old tale of the use of overpowering dominance, with the weapon of religio-teflon-ised intimidation without fear of any retribution, against those who would dare to not conform or refuse to toe the line.

Yes, I suspect it's more about self interests.


  1. Nice post Ktemoc. I have linked it on my post about the same issue:

    Keep up the good work :)

    Thanks for linking me all the while.

    For anyone reading this, my blog

    has been blocked in Malaysia. You need to use a proxy server/website to access it (google).

    Please spread the word. Thanks :)

  2. You can't drink beer, you can't wear short skirt, you can't .... now you can't go to a concert! You'll be punished if you do, I really can't understand any of these and the logic behind it! Don't we all have a CHOICE? Can we make our own decision? to such trivial matters?