I Shrug As Malaysia Outlaws Yoga For Muslims

Considering it was already shown on BBC a few days ago, I suppose the whole world already knows about the fact that Malaysia has once again flexed its secular right of religion and state and declared fatwa over the practice of Yoga. This means that Yoga is now illegal for all Muslims in Malaysia.

The thing is, usually, I would be one of the first ones to be up in arms over things like this. When beliefs clash with a choice of lifestyle, I tend to get a little iffy about it. However this time, I’m not all over it, because the one thing that I am reminded about Yoga, is that it’s roots aren’t just a simple lifestyle choice. While the new-age yuppie culture (mostly people who have too much time on their hands) promotes Yoga as just a way to stay physically fit. People forget that Yoga is still part of a belief system. It’s meant to help you achieve a state of mind that connects you with a higher plane of existence. While I have no problems with that, I can see how that interferes with other belief systems that want their own way of doing things.

However, before you think that this is just an Islam thing, I know for a fact there are a lot of Christian denominations in Malaysia itself that abhor the practice of Yoga, telling their parish not to stray from the path of God by practicing Yoga. The reasoning stands as well, in that Yoga is part of a belief system that does not agree with their own and as such isn’t tolerated among the more fundamentalist of believers. I’ll bet they are dancing their little joy at this decree, even if it is just for Muslims.

Personally, I have practiced Yoga before as a means of meditation that helps me focus my thoughts whenever my mind was all over the place. While I have replaced it with a method that’s more in tune with my own lifestyle, I know how powerful Yoga can be, if done right, in helping a person reach a state of mind far beyond what they can do consciously. Yoga is not something that people who aren’t ready can accept off the bat. Religious nutters have all the reason in the world to fear something that can open their mind to a world beyond their own.

How would you like it if the world you believe in sudden doesn’t make sense anymore? I’m not saying that Yoga can do this to everyone, I’m just saying I can understand how the possibility that Yoga can do this would affect people who aren’t open to it. People are trying to protect their belief and no matter how silly some of us may think it is, it’s something we’d all do as well if we were in the same position.

So as much as I think it’s a move of catatonic stupidity, this is however one move I have to respect in its decision and I would ask people to respect it as well. More than enough people have a valid point against it and when it comes down to belief against belief, I’d like to stay as far the hell away as possible. No, the fatwa against Yoga is the least of the problems in Malaysia.

That worries me is that they also declared fatwa against tomboys for the fear that it will turn women into lesbians. Lesbians. Really now. What do you really say to something like that? Where do you even start?

10 thoughts on “I Shrug As Malaysia Outlaws Yoga For Muslims

  1. The difference is, a Christian would not be summon to court for practicing Yoga but Muslim will be.

  2. Let them do whatever they want as long as they don’t forbid non muslim to practice yoga. But I heard that this might causes some Yoga centre close down because the business loss.

  3. Malaysia Rocks: And straight men in other countries hold hands. It’s a homophobic world and we need to know that. The problem is, why specifically target women on this? Why not homosexuality in general?

    Lays: That’s because it’s still an Islamic country. Give me a country where Church and the state are not separate and I’ll bet you’ll see the same thing.

    Horizon: Fatwa doesn’t affect non-Muslims. But the business closing is an unfortunate side effect since the majority of Malaysians are Muslims. What would really disturbing is the eventual enforcement on businesses to “curb Muslims from practicing Yoga”. It would put a strain on non-Muslims who want to practice it freely. Take that as a future prediction that would come true.

  4. Correct me if I am wrong: As far as I am concern, Malaysia is not an Islamic country. I have been informed and had learned many times that in Malaysia, Islam is the official religion* and Bahasa Malaysia is the national language. However, does this fact make Malaysia as an Islamic country, I wonder?

    Unofficially Malaysia “is” an Islamic country, considering country like Saudi Arabia “see” Malaysia as an Islamic country due to the fact above*. Still, I am pretty sure that the saying that “Malaysia is an Islamic country” is just a supeficial fact.

  5. Sknownotice: Maybe Islamic country is wrong a statement. Only when the laws dictated by Islam are the same laws that dictate Malaysia can you officially say that Malaysia is an Islamic country.

    However, it’s because there is no obvious separation between religion and state that leads me to say what I said. The question is, how would these new laws be enforced? Would they supersede current administrations? Actions tend speak far more truth than words.

  6. Yoga breeds pathetic retards who think they know way more about Islam than the muslims themselves, and who go about trying to comment on Islam.

    Very soon the high birth rates of malays and the exodus of other races will make m’sia 100% an islamic nation.

    I sugguest you leave my country now.

  7. Mukhzani: Well, considering I am a Malay Muslim, I can’t say that’s not a hard decision to make. If people of your intelligence and character think they represent the best interest of the nation, then maybe it is right that Malaysia reaps the consequences in the eyes of the world for choices its own citizens make.

  8. Clarification to Sknownotice: several ministers insist that Malaysia is an Islamic country, including the former Prime Minister Dr M. Most of us cannot accept that it is an Islamic country, because it was not enshrined in our constitution.

    Mukzhani: Fantastic thing to say. May I have your statistics for that?

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