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Kudos for Nik Abd. Aziz for initiating inter-faith meet (Harakahdaily)

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Even as praises poured in for PAS spiritual adviser Nik Aziz Nik Mat for his leadership in initiating dialogue with more than 20 leaders of different faiths religion, Friday sermons at mosques in Selangor urged Mulsims to unite against the use of the word Allah by non-Muslims.

The text of the sermons was prepared by the Selangor Islamic Department or Jais, which is still largely controlled by religious officers loyal to Umno. Although the state is now run by the Pakatan Rakyat, Umno had governed Selangor since independence from British rule in 1957 to 2008.

“The decision of the Kuala Lumpur High Court on Thursday, December 31, allowing the Herald, the Catholic Weekly, to use the word Allah was shocking to Muslims nationwide,” the text of sermon read.

“The use of the word Allah by the Christians, especially in writings, must be stopped by the government. According to Islamic principles, the government has the right to take pre-emptive measures to stop the expected damage.”

Contrasting stances

In sharp contrast to Umno's inflammatory stance, PAS leaders have sought to defuse simmering religious tensions.

On Thursday, Nik Aziz, who is also Kelantan Mentri Besar, told reporters that he had invited leaders of various religions to a late lunch meeting. The meeting - slated to take place at the Kelantan state government complex on January 28 - is aimed at building rapport.

“The state government is meeting them to raise an environment of peace and harmony between religions in this country. Although there is harmony in Kelantan for so long, it is hoped that the meeting will improve this,” Nik Aziz said.

PAS, which is led by a core committee of Muslim experts or ulamak, has stood above the racial politicking fanned by Umno. It is standing by Islamic teachings, which do not prohibit the use of Allah – the Arabic word for God – by non-Muslims.

"The initative by Nik Aziz should be welcomed by everyone and is all the more commendable when it comes at a time when leadership is perceived to be lacking from the government of the day," Ramon Navartnam, chairman of the Centre for Public Policy Studies, told Harakahdaily.

"This is the time when the vacuum of leadership needs to be filled, when the people are crying out for their leaders to reach rational solutions that are satisfactory to all.

ALLAH name: Please continue the good work

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Dear En Zulkifli Sulong,

Greetings and I wish to congratulate HarakahDaily for presenting the truth, which is so lacking in the mainstream media today. As an apolitical Malaysian, I feel proud again that we do have true and brave leaders such as our PAS leaders who are real Malaysians (and not an ultra racist or extreme religious group).

We do not need all the rhetoric and lip serviced unity slogans but yet in reality, disharmony is being promoted day in and day out using normal media and invisible hands. Before the year 2000, most of us non Muslims had the impression that PAS is an extremist religious party but due to the internet, we are now able to read, see and experience what PAS is really about.

I am pleasantly surprised and impressed by the religion of Islam that is being portrayed by PAS these days which is clearly so tolerant and moderate and no doubt, acceptable by all Malaysians.

I am becoming more interested in the Islam taught by PAS which means Religion of Peace. PAS leaders especially our beloved Tuan Guru is my hero. In my view, PAS could educate more non Muslim Malaysians through your paper on the wonderful religion of Islam it really is which shows deep respect for all human beings irrespective of race, religion, colour or creed.

I also find it very enlightening to read the speeches made by the top echelon PAS leaders and as a chinese, I would be so proud if my future Prime Minister is a PAS leader like Tuan Guru who embodies all the qualities that make all of us feel united as a nation and one people again like in the old days of our first Prime Minister, Tuanku Abdul Rahman.

Please continue to continue the good work for the country and I wish you all the best. Will pray for our country which is definitely going down at the rate things are being manipulated by certain quarters.

If I were to join any party today you can assure it will be PAS! May our great God bless all the wonderful people in HarakahDaily and PAS.

Thank you.

Kindest wishes,

Colin (From