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Malay Cultural Preponderance for Street Demonstration and Prophet Muhammad's Birthday
Umno is whacking Lim Guan Eng for what they say is his anti-Malay and anti-Islam stance.
Guan Eng, alleges Umno, has cancelled Prophet Muhammad’s birthday march.
Yes, Malays celebrate the Prophet’s birthday by marching on the streets and by screaming and hollering his name as they march. This can be considered a demonstration of sorts.
Any act of marching on the streets and shouting and screaming would tantamount to a demonstration. If you don’t think so then go ask the police.
But did Umno not say that demonstrating and marching on the streets is NOT our culture?
Umno is against demonstrating and marching on the streets because it violates Malaysian culture. This is what Umno said. This is not what I say.
Malays are probably the ONLY Muslims who celebrate the Prophet’s birthday by demonstrating.
Even in Mekah and Medina, the seat of Islam, you do not find this. This custom is unique to Malaysia, just like the Quran reading competition, which is not done in Mekah, Medina, Istanbul, Teheran or whatever.
In the Quran reading competition, contestants are judged on their melody and accuracy of reading. More than 90% of those who attend these Quran reading competitions do not speak Arabic. So they do NOT really know what is being recited.
It is like attending a rock concert in Germany. They all sing in German and you do not know what they are singing. You just appreciate the melody and voice, not the lyrics, which is…well…German, as far as you are concerned.
So what is all this brouhaha about the Prophet’s birthday march in Penang, which Umno says Lim Guan Eng has cancelled?
In the first place, did he really cancel it? And even if he did so what?
Maybe Guan Eng is doing the Malays a favour by bringing them back to the right path. Malays have deviated from Islam for so many generations.
Malays say we must live (adeen) according to the Quran, the sunnah (ways), and the hadith (sayings) of the Prophet. Well, did the Prophet hold birthday parties when he was alive?
And did they celebrate his birthday by marching on the streets of Medina? If not then where did this strange tradition come from?
I am not saying that it is wrong to remember the Prophet’s birthday. But how many who participate in these marches know what was the day the Prophet was born?
Do they know that the Prophet died on his birthday? So are they celebrating his death and birthday both at the same time?
Many who march on the Prophet’s birthday are not even aware that he died on his birthday.
Anyway, just like in the case of Jesus Christ, there are differences of opinion as to what day the Prophet was born. Tradition says it was the Year of the Elephant. Others say it could have been a couple of years earlier.
So, just like whether Christ was born on 25 December or in July, the actual date of the Prophet’s birth is equally being disputed.
The thing is, in those days, no records were kept of birthdays and whatnot. It was just an educated guess at best. These things were not important to the Arabs and Bedouins of that time. So they did not care about when you were born.
Anyway, if you wish to remember the Prophet, that is no problem. Please do so by all means. But if you really love the Prophet and wish to remember him, then there should be better ways of doing so.
Why would you want to celebrate the birthday of a man you do not follow? If you really love the Prophet and wish to remember him then you should do so by following his teachings.
The Prophet was against racism. He said so is his last sermon in Arafah. But those who participate in the march to celebrate the Prophet’s birthday also uphold Malay supremacy or Ketuanan Melayu.
The Prophet said that corruption is riba’ .
The sin of riba’ tantamount to the sin of sexual intercourse with your own mother or father Bank loans are riba’. So are car loans and credit cards. Any money made not from your sweat but by using money to make money, like stocks and bonds, is also riba’. Speculation (gambling) like forward buying or selling is riba’. Any fixed income (interest) earned on your money is riba’. Excess profit is riba’. Hording and creating shortages so that you can jack up your price is riba’.
Show me one Malay in that march to celebrate the Prophet’s birthday who does not get involved in riba’ one way or another.
There are many things the Prophet has told us to do and not to do. We do most of what we have been told not to do and do not do most of what we have been told to do.
We defy the Prophet every step of the way. We do not adhere to the Prophet’s teachings. We have failed as true followers of Prophet Muhammad.
Yet we want to remember the Prophet by marching on the streets on his birthday.Yes, march by all means if that makes you happy. But first adhere to the Prophet’s teachings.
Do you think that by marching on the streets on the Prophet’s birthday that makes you a true follower of Prophet Muhammad?
Marching on the streets is merely a demonstration. You are merely demonstrating that you are a true follower of Prophet Muhammad. But it is still merely a demonstration. And demonstrations are external, not internal. It is internal that counts, not external.
On the matter that Umno says that demonstrations are not our culture and should not be allowed, Umno always proudly relates the story about the 1946 anti-Malayan Union demonstration that they organised in front of the Majestic Hotel near the Kuala Lumpur Railway Station. This is Umno’s proudest moment and we are constantly reminded about the incident.
Umno tells us that this demonstration is a landmark in Malayan history. It is because of this demonstration that Malaya’s political landscape changed. So, who says that demonstrations are not our culture? It is the foundation of the Federation of Malaya. Malaysia is what it is today because of this demonstration.
This is what Umno keeps telling us. Now they tell us that demonstrations are NOT our culture?
-Raja Petra Kamarudin