More than 300 Bibles are confiscated in Malaysia

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Islamic authorities in Malaysia have seized more than 300 Bibles from the Bible Society because they use the word Allah to refer to God, officials say.

Bible Society officials told Reuters that two of their members were briefly detained following the seizure.

A court ruled in October that non-Muslims could not use the word Allah to refer to God.

The appeals court said the term Allah must be exclusive to Islam or it could cause public disorder.

People of all faiths use the word Allah in Malay to refer to their gods.

Christians argue they have used the word, which entered Malay from Arabic, to refer to their God for centuries and that the ruling violates their rights.

The October court ruling overturned a 2009 ruling which said that a Catholic newspaper, The Herald, could use the word Allah in its Malay-language edition to describe the Christian God.

The 2009 ruling sparked tensions, with churches and mosques attacked.

Written By: BBC News
continue to source article at bbc.co.uk

30 COMMENTS

  1. My Allah is better than your Allah! So there!

    And my Dad’s bigger than yours… and so’s my Mum…

    etc… etc… ad nauseam…

    You’d think they’d have bigger things to worry about in these ‘developing’ countries…

    Perhaps that’s why they are still ‘developing’…

    • In reply to #2 by Dr Bob:

      My Allah is better than your Allah! So there!

      And my Dad’s bigger than yours… and so’s my Mum…

      etc… etc… ad nauseam…

      You’d think they’d have bigger things to worry about in these ‘developing’ countries…

      Perhaps that’s why they are still ‘developing’…

      Please clarify your first paragraph.

      • In reply to #18 by Genesis John Martinez:

        In reply to #2 by Dr Bob:

        My Allah is better than your Allah! So there!

        And my Dad’s bigger than yours… and so’s my Mum…

        etc… etc… ad nauseam…

        You’d think they’d have bigger things to worry about in these ‘developing’ countries…

        Perhaps that’s why they are still ‘developing’…

        Ple…

        Not sure I understand what you need me to clarify – I think the point I was making was pretty clear…

        These people act like children in the playground, arguing over who has the better trainers or games console…

        As ‘Saint Paul’ (allegedly) said:

        “When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things.”

        Oh the irony…

  2. I don’t understand how some countries can exist at all with a relatively highly organised economy and infrastructure (as Malaysia has) when they have such breathtakingly stupid laws. I just can’t get my head around it.

    • In reply to #4 by Simon Tuffen:

      I don’t understand how some countries can exist at all with a relatively highly organised economy and infrastructure (as Malaysia has) when they have such breathtakingly stupid laws. I just can’t get my head around it.

      Thou hypocrite. Perhaps you should remove the plank from your eye.

      What country do you live in? What even stupider laws does it have?

    • In reply to #4 by Simon Tuffen:

      I don’t understand how some countries can exist at all with a relatively highly organised economy and infrastructure (as Malaysia has) when they have such breathtakingly stupid laws. I just can’t get my head around it.

      There are also apparently countries where the Head of State’s job is passed down from mother to son and people get to be politicians because their great, great, great, grandaddy bought a peerage of some King or Queen or just because they are bishops. Weird isn’t it. :-)

      Michael

      • In reply to #9 by mmurray:

        In reply to #4 by Simon Tuffen:
        There are also apparently countries where the Head of State’s job is passed down from mother to son and people get to be politicians because their great, great, great, grandaddy bought a peerage of some King or Queen or just because they are bishops.

        Because a few rules that affect a few dozen people at most (whether we like the rules or not) is of course completely identical to a law designed to oppress a sizable portion of the population.

        And in other news, parking fines are now exactly equal to the Nuremberg Laws.

        • In reply to #20 by ANTIcarrot:

          In reply to #9 by mmurray:

          In reply to #4 by Simon Tuffen:
          There are also apparently countries where the Head of State’s job is passed down from mother to son and people get to be politicians because their great, great, great, grandaddy bought a peerage of some King or Queen or just because they ar…

          The smiley at the end

          Weird isn’t it. :-)

          tells you I’m not being serious. It was an (obviously failed) attempt at humour.

          Michael

  3. So let me get this straight. Only one section of Malaysian society is now permitted to use this particular Arabic word. It just doesn’t make any sense but why am I not surprised by this. Allah works in mysterious ways of course. I suppose non-muslims cannot use the Malay Jawi script either.

  4. On such trivia crusades are launched. I recall the question of how good and evil are distributed in the world, and the Albigensian crusade that came of it.

    Religion eats the brain.

  5. @OP link The appeals court said the term Allah must be exclusive to Islam or it could cause public disorder.

    Nutters will jump up and down causing public disorder if governments and courts don’t pander to their prejudices! (There’s rational thinking for you!!)

    People of all faiths use the word Allah in Malay to refer to their gods.

    Christians argue they have used the word, which entered Malay from Arabic, to refer to their God for centuries and that the ruling violates their rights.

    What is that visitors to this site, tell “nasty new atheists” in patronising tones, about “mature engagement” with fundamentalist theists?

  6. For monotheists, there can be only one god, which they call God in English and Allah in Arabic and Malay, regardless of the theological differences between the three Abrahamic religions and the various denominations and sects within each of them. It certainly makes no sense to forbid non-Muslims from using ‘Allah’ to refer to the putative supreme being. The article fails to report on the involved Malaysian authorities’ reasons for making this bizarre linguistic decision, but one can be forgiven for wondering whether a certain community of Muslims have come to regard the putative supreme being of the cosmos as belonging only to them, whereas a supreme being and creator of the cosmos, if it existed, would belong to no-one and everything and all people would belong to it.

  7. “The appeals court said the term Allah must be exclusive to Islam or it could cause public disorder.”

    Good grief. If Islam wants to continue to make itself look fucking ridiculous in the eyes of the word, I am happy to provide enough shovels for them to keep right on digging.

    • In reply to #17 by Genesis John Martinez:

      That reason for that problem can be a contradiction between 2 religious sets of rules. Am I right?

      You would need to specify which rules you are talking about.

  8. Perhaps now we can get those sacreligious heathens to stop ordering Spaghetti (Sauce Be Upon Him) in restaurants. Those Italians are the worst, with their wild claims of cultural ownership. They should stick to their wafers.

  9. Anyone can use any damn word they want ….its only a word no one can control all the people of the world all the time…. so why even think you have the right to try…its a bit presumptuous …that anyone else should respect what you say ???? I have no wish to offend anyone but….Jehovah Jehovah Jehovah…or He who must not be named…..Allah Allah Allah….Now what ? Buddha Buddha Buddha…the offence is all meaningless…..Voldemort…..Aggghhhh ….that’s just too much….

  10. Religion is not the least bit divisive… No sir. It’s a force for good, I mean… Just look around you right?…

    The only way anyone can believe that religion is a force for good is to refrain from looking around them. The more informed people become, the less likely they are to be religious.

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