Thursday, October 24, 2013

Dr Asri - blood versus coconut water

While I respect my Penang lang (fellow Penangite) Dr Mohd Asri Zainul Abidin, the well-known former mufti of Perlis, I just cannot agree with his take on an example of Malaysian religious ceremonies, as reported in Malaysiakini's Don't just harp on korban, what about other faiths?

Dr Asri

In responding to Hindus complaining about the slaughter of cows at SK Puchong Jaya in Selangor during Aidiladha last week, he stated that while 'he agrees that schools are not appropriate venues for the Aidiladha cow sacrifice ritual, other religious acts in public places should also be similarly regulated.'

The 'other' religious act in public place that he brought out was obviously Thaipusam, because he said:

Lord Murugan conveyed in chariot

"Among these, roads are not places for religious processions such as carrying idols and smashing of coconuts to the point of inconveniencing road users or messing up a public space, such as being carried out by followers of certain religions. If you want to streamline (the regulations), then do it for all."

notice Chinese among the devotees?

Come on lah, Dr Asri, where's the comparison between slaughtering live animals like cattle and sometimes even camels accompanied by blood and gore and undoubtedly their terrified bawling and bellowing (death cries) at a school in the sight of its young pupils and traumatizing them, and the breaking of coconut fruits on roads which might have temporarily inconvenienced motorists.

Can't we have the animals slaughtered at a more appropriate location, say, in the compound of a mosque or surau?

Incidentally, Chinese Penangites have been among the most staunch supporters of the Thaipusam processions and the associated ritual of breaking coconuts for Lord Murugan's blessings.

mainly Chinese

Furthermore, the religious processions of Thaipusam and the associated ritual of breaking coconuts have always been known in advance by the police who would each year provide early advice to motorists, escort to the processions as well as control the traffic along the affected road(s).

Chinese devotee of Lord Murugan with kavadi

As for his claim that the ritual would mess up a public space, namely the roads, obviously (and strangely for a Penangite) he has not been aware that once the Thaipusam chariot carrying Lord Murugan had passed, the so-called mess, namely broken coconuts on the road, would be swiftly taken away by members of the public for their own use, like extracting santan (coconut milk) from the fruit, and even making use of the shells for fuel.

Dr Asri is respected for his fairness, and I am one of his fans, but in this case I don't agree with his comparison, which in reality is no comparison at all - because one ritual, if conducted at a school during the schooling term, would traumatize school kids with the bloody slaughter of live animals (ones which additionally are sacred to Hindus) while the other would merely break coconuts on a road, which would not be insensitive to other religions (unless you're a new Ayah Pin who worships coconuts, wakakaka).


My letter to Malaysiakini on subject but more refinedly written, wakakaka, and without any 'wakakaka', which calls for a wakakaka ;-), published on 25 Oct 2013, Blood versus coconut water


  1. Whoa...whoa... my son is shit scared when he saw that guy having a sharp rod piercing through his jaw. What kind of ritual is this? Absolutely traumatising and should be banned in public places


  3. both thaipusam & raya korban dah jadi festival. fair what!

  4. It is like comparing a pin prick on the a finger and a whole arm gets chopped off with the main arteries cut off and blood spouting furiously out..... !!

    KT, your pictures spoke a thousand words.....OMG....look at the dead animals and the BLOOD ! and if we include in the sound effect the poor animals must be braying loudly and desperately in fear and agony, kicking and struggling for its' lives ! The right word for these kind of activities.... [deleted by kt]

  5. This is our problem. The failure of tolerance. Everything must be political. Now we harp everyday our differences.

    The qurban done in school is done on a holiday. No school children or even hindus there. Why in the first place this become a big issue after all these years?

    What happen to tolerance. Now we extend to thaipusam pula. Really sick Malaysians we have out there.

    1. CBMF, Who introduces this failure of tolerance? Sick people like u, mah!!!!!! 'The qurban done in school is done on a holiday. No school children or even hindus there.' Holiday or not, presence of school children or not, even without the attendance of Hindu - it's just [deleted by kt]. Thus the unspoken sensitivity! FYI, in the past, korban during Aidiladha had never been done in an urban school. Those days, religious tolerance was well guarded by all parties! Then, came ketuanan - now, it was even done at the compound of the august Parliament! Just like what that bodoh sombong ISMA proclaimed, others have to kowtow to the wishes of the majority. So, again - who makes M'sia sick???

    2. Dear Ellese the Hypocrite,

      We are talking about appropriate conduct. Why do you want to bring in politics? Are you so politically siege that you cannot think what is appropriate.

      Ellese the Hypocrite, are you agreeing that slaughter should be done in school and we should do it nationwide to educated the Rakyat.

      Okay, let start with all those kindergartens.

      What say you Ellese? Still about politics?

  6. Its all in the eyes of the beholder. To Muslims, the Aidil Adha sacrifice is a highly meaningful religious event.
    Before Non-Muslims criticise , they need to be aware of their own actions in the mirror.
    I'm not suggesting to stop or restrict the practices, but the annual Thaipusam procession , for example, is highly disruptive and inconveniencing to the entire community.
    Not to mention the mountains of waste produced and occasional murders and gang violence.