Archive for February, 2009

Home Ministry Rescinds Gazette on Word ‘Allah’

February 28, 2009

Comment: Another ironic twist given the haste with which the Government first imposed unreasonable conditions or restrictions on how Christians may use the word ‘Allah’. Maybe the Government thought the Christians will gratefully compromise (or rather surrender their fundamental religious liberty for pseudo-concessions under the threatening ambience of the Internal Security Act. Unfortunately, the Council of Churches says, “thanks, but no thanks”(read its press statement). (more…)

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Response to Irrelevant Rhetoric on Use of ‘Allah’

February 28, 2009

Might as well post a letter which I wrote to Malaysiakini:

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Writer’s debate on ‘Allah’ term lost in irrelevancy LINK
Dr Ng Kam Weng | Feb 27, 09 4:35pm

I refer to the letter Other Christian denominations not using ‘Allah’.LINK

This letter displays so much ignorance that under normal circumstances, it would not merit a reply. However, a concise and decisive response is given here only because readers of Malaysiakini surely deserve a more enlightened discourse on the issue.

I find the writer misguided on three counts:

First, he is plainly misguided about what the Eastern Orthodox Church believes in. Perhaps the writer is mistaken because historically, the Orthodox Church did not accept the Western Latin Church’s formulation of the Trinity that says the Holy Spirit is from the Father and the Son (the filioque clause discussed in any standard text on doctrinal history).

But contrary to the writer’s view, the Orthodox Church’s rejection of the filioque clause is not because it does not believe in the Trinity but because it believes it has a clearer formulation of the doctrine of Trinity. (more…)

Christians Can Use Allah Word With Conditions

February 26, 2009

Note – I am presently too caught up with giving an intensive course on Worldview and Cultural Analysis. As such, I will just post some news updates concerning the controversy over the rights of Malaysian Christians to use the word ‘Allah’.

Precis: The Government gazatte states: Prohibition on use of specific words on document and publication 2. (1) The printing, publication, sale, issue, circulation and possession of any document and publication relating to Christianity containing the words “Allah”, “Kaabah”, “Baitullah” and “Solat” are prohibited unless on the front cover of the document and publication are written with the words “for christianity”. (2) The words “for christianity ” referred to in subparagraph (1) shall be written clearly in font type Arial of size 16 in bold.

More analytical comments will be forthcoming. (more…)