Rukun Iman ke 7: Beriman kepada Teori Konspirasi

Dr Azam Che 30/03/2014

Al-Facebook dan Al-Twitter sebagai Wahyu Moden

Peristiwa kehilangan secara misteri MH370 yang sudah lebih dari 20 hari membuka seluas-luasnya ruang gosip, kritikan dan prasangka di dalam medium sosial Facebook dan Twitter. Sesetengahnya menjadikan kedua-dua medium tersebut sebagai sumber berita, ilmu dan wahyu dimana apa sahaja yang dibaca dijadikan sandaran dan dipercayai sepenuhnya. Jikalau Facebook mendapat $1 setiap kali status konspirasi mengenai MH370 dikongsikan, mungkin Facebook boleh menambah beberapa ratus juta dalam pendapatan tahunannya. Pelbagai teori muncul dari yang mempunyai beberapa kebetulan sehinggalah kepada yang bersifat mengarut dan terlalu kreatif. Di dunia Islam tentunya Amerika/Israel/Eropah adalah watak jahat utama dalam pelbagai versi teori-teori yang ada.

Disebalik kejadian MH370, terjadi pula peristiwa mahkamah menjatuhkan hukuman mati kepada 529 penyokong Ikhwan Muslimin dalam masa dua hari sahaja. Sudah pasti, teori konspirasi makin bertiup kencang mengaitkan As-Sisi dengan agenda Zionis sebagai ‘pemerintah utama dunia’. Apa-apa perkembangan atau peristiwa yang terjadi, hampir kesemuanya boleh dikaitkan secara pemikiran konspirasi dengan watak jahat tersembunyi di belakang tabir. Bagaimana menghadapinya? Bagaimana menentukan apa yang boleh dipercayai dan apa yang tidak? Atas persoalan inilah artikel ini ditulis.

 

Mental yang ‘Mental’

Mempercayai teori konspirasi ini merupakan penyakit sejagat. Jikalau ada benda yang boleh menyatukan manusia keseluruhannya, maka terbukti salah satu daripadanya adalah sifat saling berprasangka antara satu sama lain. Setiap manusia akan berprasangka yang bukan-bukan dan takut akan perbuatan jahat manusia lain ke atas dirinya. Teori konspirasi ini pada awalnya berpunca dari millieu masyarakat Barat yang semakin kehilangan liberty mereka akibat dari pembolotan kuasa oleh pemerintah bergaya Big Brother. Ia kemudiannya diimport dengan pengubahsuaian oleh masyarakat dunia keseluruhannya. Ibarat seluar jeans yang mula dipakai di Amerika diadaptasi oleh masyarakat dunia sesuai mengikut potongan badan masing-masing. Walaubagaimanapun, teori konspirasi yang terhasil dari wacana pemikiran dunia Islam adalah menjadi tumpuan artikel ini. Lebih spesifik lagi, dunia Islam dalam versi Melayu Malaysia. Continue reading

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Baling Saja!

Dr A Z Zul 26/03/2014

Balingian adalah sebahagian daripadanya! Pendidikan Malaysia yang serba tak kena.

Ekonomi, pendidikan dan kesihatan adalah tiga instrumen penting yang menjadi petunjuk pembangunan sesebuah negara dan masyarakat. Ketiga-tiga elemen ini juga menjadi kunci kepada kemenangan parti-parti politik di negara-negara yang matang sistem politik demokrasi, di mana garis jalur manifesto parti akan dirangka untuk memenuhi keperluan rakyat.

Krisis Pendidikan?

Adalah kejutan yang tidak mengejutkan apabila Dr Frederico Gil Sander, seorang ekonomis senior di Bank Dunia memberikan kenyataan bahawa kualiti rendah sistem pendidikan Malaysia adalah lebih membimbangkan daripada kadar hutang isi rumah Malaysia. Kenyataan yang dibuat pada siri Global Malaysia yang dianjurkan oleh Program Transformasi Ekonomi, adalah berdasarkan ujian penilaian prestasi PISA 2012 di mana daripada 65 buah negara, Malaysia menduduki tangga ke 52. Lebih menyedihkan lagi apabila Dr Frederico menyatakan bahawa murid-murid luar
bandar Vietnam (yang menduduki tangga ke 17) adalah lebih baik daripada murid-murid Malaysia pada ketika Menteri Pendidikan menyatakan bahawa kualiti pendidikan Malaysia adalah lebih baik daripada Amerika.

Continue reading

Kajang : Satu Godaan Untuk ISMA?

The Satay Kajang Fiasco Series

Dr. A Z Zul

Kehangatan PRK Kajang semakin menyengat melebihi kepanasan kemarau dan cuaca kering. Ibarat cucuk satay yang disapu minyak diletakkan di atas api yang marak membara apabila dikipas kencang. Bermula dengan krisis antara PKR Selangor, perletakan jawatan ADUN Kajang dan pengumuman DSAI untuk bertanding menjadikan Kajang sebagai lokasi strategik yang perlu diberikan perhatian oleh politikus yang bercita-cita besar.

Zaid Ibrahim bijak melihat peluang dan terus mencabar DSAI. BN pula kelihatan mempunyai strategi sendiri apabila tetap meletakkan calon berbangsa Cina, Ma Fun sebagai harapan mereka di Kajang. Strategi yang agak pelik kerana di Kajang, demografik yang paling tinggi semasa PRU 13 adalah dari bangsa Melayu dan demografik ini paling pantas berkembang jumlahnya.

Dimana pembela Melayu Sejati?

Persoalan yang sering ditanya oleh sebahagian penduduk Kajang ialah “Adakah PRK Kajang akan menyaksikan persaingan baru dari aliran “Pejuang Melayu Islam” yang mana ISMA adalah kumpulan paling menonjol dari aliran tersebut? Bacaan dan analisis kami di STRATA yakin ISMA tidak akan mensia-siakan peluang yang besar ini dan tergoda untuk masuk gelanggang meletakkan calon mereka berdasarkan kepada 7 logik berikut, bak kata P.Ramlee, ‘cobaaan’ Continue reading

Tunisia’s new constitution: progress and challenges to come

This article is taken from webpage OpenDemocracy.net and is promoted here. It discusses the difficulties in drafting the new Tunisia’s constitution without undermining the rights of different strata in the society. The new constitution is highly regarded as the pinnacle of Arab democracy even with its minor flaws and quirks. 

The original link: http://www.opendemocracy.net/arab-awakening/zaid-al-ali-donia-ben-romdhane/tunisia’s-new-constitution-progress-and-challenges-to-

 

ZAID AL-ALI and DONIA BEN ROMDHANE 16 February 2014

In spite of a number of serious challenges, the Tunisian Constituent Assembly – under the people’s ever watchful eye – successfully negotiated a new and modern constitution. In 2011, the political class was far from prepared for the changes that had been forced upon them by the people.  Important cleavages between conservative Islamist politicians on the one hand and liberal and secular politicians on the other complicated negotiations and grew worse over time.

For a time, it was far from certain that the negotiating parties would be able to reach a final agreement. This was particularly true after the changes that took place in Egypt during June 2013, coupled with the assassination of three opposition politicians, as well as attacks against the country’s military (that were often attributed to a lax attitude by the ruling coalition against Islamist militants). During the fall of 2013, leading members of the opposition were calling for the government to be toppled and for the Constituent Assembly to be dissolved.     

In the end, a series of negotiations took place to defuse the political crisis without any additional violence. The country’s main political forces participated in discussions that were brokered by the country’s largest trade unions, the lawyers association, and one of the country’s largest human rights associations (who were together referred to as the ‘Quartet’). Meanwhile, negotiations on the finalization of the constitution continued in a separate forum (see below).

By successfully negotiating a final agreement, the Tunisians have led the way in proving that ideological differences need not lead to conflict or stalemate and that they can survive in the context of a modern Arab state and society. The pragmatic and result-based approach that the Tunisian negotiators adopted will serve as a positive example of successful constitution-making and conflict resolution not just for the Arab region, but for much of the rest of the world as well. 

The early stages

Many of the difficulties that emerged were linked to the context in which the constitutional process took place, and also to the manner in which the Constituent Assembly organized its work at the very early stages. In Tunisia, as in all countries that were affected by the Arab uprisings of 2011, ruling elites and members of the opposition were caught completely by surprise and unprepared by the changes that were forced onto them by the people. Before the constituent assembly elections that took place in October 2011, senior state officials repeatedly argued that the new constitution was a purely technical document that could be drafted in a matter of months, reflecting their lack of understanding of how complex the process was likely to be, particularly given that Tunisia was just emerging from a harsh dictatorial environment in which basic freedoms, including free expression, were denied for decades.  

That lack of preparedness and of understanding also impacted on the manner in which the drafting process itself was organized. After the constituent assembly was elected, its members made the mistake of debating and drafting detailed provisions on the system of government and human rights without first having agreed upon the type of state that should be established, or the type of relationship that should exist between the state and the individual. South Africa, India and most recently Yemen are only some of the countries where the politicians took the time to negotiate what has been referred to as ‘fundamental principles’ before actually starting the process of drafting the constitution. Proceeding in that fashion makes sense for countries that start their transition to democracy without a good idea of what their state will look like in the future. In Tunisia, an early attempt was made to discuss the future state’s fundamental principles by a commission that was headed by Yadh Ben Achour in 2011. The text was considered to be disappointing to many, and did not play an important role during the drafting of the constitution that started in 2012. 

Details were discussed before fundamentals and for that reason, much time was lost. Drafters argued over how parliamentary procedure should be worded in the constitution more than a year before knowing whether the new state would be presidential, parliamentary or somewhere in between. When eventually a final decision was made, much of the initial drafting work had to be redone. 

The dominating political parties also made the mistake of assuming that constitutional drafting should be organized along similar lines to the ordinary political process and that therefore electoral results were the only or at least the main factor that should determine the negotiations’ dynamics (the same approach was taken in Iraq in 2005 and in Egypt in 2012).

In the October 2011 elections, Ennahda (the main Islamist party) obtained the best result by far with 37% of the vote. Ennahda believed, as did its Islamist counterparts in other Arab countries who had also performed well in elections since 2011, that their recent electoral success should entitle them to determine the permanent constitution’s makeup regardless of whether they could maintain their level of popularity in the future. Ennahda’s position was more moderate than their Egyptian counterparts (possibly because, despite their success, they were nevertheless in a clear minority within the Assembly) and very quickly into the process conceded on a number of issues (most famously, Ennahda’s leadership dropped its insistence that the new constitution should refer to Sharia as a source of legislation). Despite that important move, the issue did not die as Islamist members continued to try to pepper the text with religious references. 

Thus, when the CA formed drafting committees to work on various parts of the constitution right at the start of the process, their makeup (and therefore the weight that was given to various positions) was determined solely by each party’s respective weight in the Assembly itself. Most importantly perhaps, the Assembly established a Joint Committee for Cooperation and Drafting which was theoretically responsible for coordinating the work of all the other drafting committees and for preparing the constitution’s final draft. However, as a result of the fact that Ennahda dominated the Joint Committee, its remaining members consistently complained that their views were being ignored, preventing the Joint Committee from making any progress on a number of fundamental issues.  

Eventually, in June 2013, more than 1.5 years into the process, as the country’s political divide deepened, it became apparent that the Joint Committee was unable to resolve most if not all of the points of disagreement that had already been outstanding for some time. In addition, a crisis broke out after it was discovered that the Joint Commission’s president made a number of important changes to the draft constitution without consulting the relevant drafting commissions. A decision was therefore taken to form a new body, known as the Consensus Committee, in which each political group was given equal weight to all others. Continue reading

How Muslims Helped Cause the American Revolution

The article below is taken from LostIslamicHistory.com website and is promoted here. It contains the rarely discussed idea of liberty and liberal-political theory originating from revealed Islamic philosophy and Sunnah of the Prophet.

original link: http://lostislamichistory.com/how-muslims-helped-cause-the-american-revolution

Today’s American political landscape can be quite a confusing and frightening place. The ideas of the Founding Fathers are commonly cited as the foundation of the nation. The Declaration of Independence and the Constitution are seen as the infallible documents on which American life are based. Freedom, democracy, and liberty are the cornerstones of political and social ideas in the United States.

At the same time, however, the rising tide of Islamophobia is making its presence felt. Politicians support the characterization of Islamic life as incompatible with American society. Media “pundits” decry the supposed influence Muslims are having on destroying the basis of American political and social ideas.

The truly ironic part of this is that Muslims in fact helped formulate the ideas that the United States is based on. While this article will not argue that Islam and Muslims are the only cause of the American Revolution, the impact that Muslims had on the establishment of America is clear and should not be overlooked.

Islamic Philosophy and the Enlightenment

The political and social ideas that caused the American colonists to revolt against the British Empire were formulated in a movement known as the Enlightenment. The Enlightenment was an intellectual movement that argued that science and reason should be the basis of human society, not blind following of monarchs and church authority. On July 4th, 1776, in Philadelphia, the American revolutionaries signed the Declaration of Independence, a document written by Thomas Jefferson and heavily influenced by the Enlightenment, which made official their break from Great Britain and the establishment of the United States of America.

The Enlightenment was driven by a group of European philosophers and scientists who were going against the prevailing ideas of governance in Europe at the time. Among these thinkers were people such as John Locke, René Descartes, Isaac Newton and Montesquieu.

John Locke

John Locke, an Englishman who lived from 1632 to 1704, promoted some of the most influential ideas of the Enlightenment. He pioneered the idea that humans are naturally good, and are corrupted by society or government to becoming deviant. Locke described this idea in his An Essay Concerning Human Understanding as the tabula rasa, a Latin phrase meaning blank slate. The idea was not original to him, however. In fact, Locke directly took the idea from a Muslim philosopher from the 1100s, Ibn Tufail. In Ibn Tufail’s book, Hayy ibn Yaqdhan, he describes an identical idea about how humans act as a blank slate, absorbing experiences and information from their surroundings.

The same idea manifests itself in the life of Prophet Muhammad (Peace Be Upon Him). He stated that “No child is born except on the fitra.” Fitra here can be defined as the natural, pure state of a person. According to Islamic thought, all humans are born in a natural state of purity, with belief in one God, and that as they grow older, they adopt the ideas and beliefs of the people around them, particularly their parents. This is the intellectual forerunner of the tabula rasa that Locke learned from Ibn Tufail.

Continue reading

Bicara Rashid el-Ghannouche: Tunisia, Ennahda dan Politik Islam

Artikel dibawah telah diterbitkan oleh laman Malaysia Harmoni dan dipromosikan di sini.

Link asal: http://malaysiaharmoni.com/v2/index.php/pandangan/3116-bicara-rashid-el-ghannouche-tunisia-ennahda-dan-politik-islam

 

KHAMIS, 06 FEBRUARI 2014 11:46 DR MASZLEE MALIK

Mukadimah

Dari kaca mata para Islamis radikal, tradisionalis dan ekstremis, Ennahda mungkin bukanlah satu model yang boleh mereka kagumi. Sejak awal penglibatan mereka dalam politik pasca-Revolusi lagi, mereka menolak ide penubuhan negara Islam di Tunisia. Mereka juga tidak bercadang untuk melaksanakan hukum hudud dan syariah di Tunisia. Lebih menarik lagi, mereka juga tidak bercadang memerintah bersendirian walaupun memenangi kerusi parlimen terbanyak, sambil melepaskan jawatan presiden kepada parti yang bersama-sama mereka membentuk kerajaan walaupun parti berkenaan memenangi bilangan kerusi yang lebih kecil. Mutakhir ini, setelah didesak oleh pihak pembangkang yang rata-ratanya berhaluan kiri, mereka dengan rela melepaskan jawatan perdana menteri dalam kerajaan, malah melepaskan kedudukan mereka sebagai parti pemerintah demi memberi laluan kepada kerajaan sementara, penggubalan perlembagaan dan juga pilihan raya yang baru.

Pada 20 Januari 2014, saya telah berpeluang untuk menghadiri ceramah dan wawancara umum wakil pertubuhan-pertubuhan Islam, ahli akademik dan jurnalis dari seluruh dunia dengan Syeikh Dr Racshid Ghannouche di hotel al-Muradi, Ghamrath, Tunisia. Bersama dengan beliau ialah rombongan pimpinan IKRAM yang terdiri daripada Naib Presidennya, Ustaz Wan Subki Wan Salleh dan juga Ketua Sekretariat Biro Politik IKRAM, Prof Dr Ahmad Termizi Ramli. Pengerusi Aqsa Syarif, Prof Madya Dr Hafidzi Mohd Noor juga turut hadir dalam perjumpaan tersebut. Perjumpaan Dr Rashid Ghannouche (RG) bersama wakil-wakil pertubuhan Islam dan ahli akademik dari serata dunia itu merupakan program sisipan kepada Konfrens al-Magharibah li ajli al-Quds (Rantau Arab Maghreb untuk al-Quds). Dalam ceramah dan wawancara terbuka tersebut, RG telah menghuraikan beberapa perkara penting berkaitan konsep Siyasah Syar’iyyah, konsep Fiqh Siyasi (politik) berteraskan Maqasid dan juga segala isu berkaitan dengan Revolusi Jasmine 2010, parti Ennahda dan juga situasi terkini politik di Tunisia. Laporannya adalah seperti berikut:

Pendekatan Maqasidi

Menurut RG, pendekatan politik Islam yang mithali wajib berteraskan pendekatan Maqasidi. Ia bermaksud, meletakkan objektif tertinggi Syariat untuk dicapai melalui aktiviti politik umat Islam. Pendekatan Maqasidi akan dapat mengelakkan pendekatan secara literal yang seringkali membawa kepada penafsiran ekstrem dan natijah yang radikal oleh golongan Islamis.

Pendekatan Maqasidi dalam politik boleh difahami daripada penulisan Imam al-Shatibi melalui karya agungnya, ‘al-Muwafaqat’, dan dicernakan oleh huraian dan penerangan oleh ulama besar Tunisia, al-Marhum Syeikh Tahir bin Ashur. Tahir bin Ashur yang telah meninggal dunia pada tahun 1973 telah mempersembahkan teori Maqasid al-Shatibi dalam bentuk yang lebih komprehensif dan menyeluruh selara dengan tuntutan zaman moden.

Menurut teori Maqasid, hukum-hakam yang telah disyariatkan oleh Allah Subhanahu wa Taala adalah bertujuan untuk menjaga kepentingan manusia dan keperluan mereka (maslahah), dan untuk mengelakkan mereka daripada bencana dan kemudaratan di dunia dan akhirat. Maka hukum-hakam Islam menjaga dan mempromosikan lima keperluan atau nilai penting dalam kehidupan manusia, iaitu nyawa, agama, akal, harta benda dan kehormatan. Maka, sebarang tindakan Muslim, sebarang pelaksanaan hukum-hakam Islam dan juga sebarang perkara baru yang memerlukan ijtihad segera untuk diberikan hukum syarak kepadanya wajib mengambil kira kelima-lima nilai yang telah disebutkan itu. Selain daripada penjagaan dan promosi kepada lima keperluan dan nilai utama tersebut, Ibn Ashur pula telah memasukkan dua lagi keperluan utama dalam hidup manusia, iaitu ‘keadilan’ dan ‘kebebasan’.

Bertunjangkan usaha untuk menjaga, mempertahankan dan mempromosikan ketujuh-tujuh nilai tersebutlah Ennahda meletakkan garis panduan dalam keterlibatan di ruang politik. Tambahan lagi, bagi Ennahda, kita menyedari bahawa musuh utama kepada umat Islam dalam ruang politik ialah sekularisme ektremis, pemerintahan diktator dan kejahilan rakyat serta usaha memperbodoh mereka. Oleh yang demikian, Ennahda mengambil pendirian yang selari dengan konsep Siyasah Syari’yyah berdasarkan Maqasid untuk tuntas memperjuangkan kebebasan, keadilan dan kesaksamaan.

Maka, jika dilihat kepada perjuangan Ennahda, mereka konsisten untuk membawa revolusi yang sebenar dalam kehidupan rakyat. Revolusi tahun 2010 yang lalu hanyalah secebis revolusi politik yang menyumbang kepada ruang untuk revolusi-revolusi lain yang lebih besar, iaitu revolusi cara berfikir yang kolot kepada cara berfikir dunia maju, revolusi tahap pendidikan yang terpinggir kepada pendidikan bertaraf dunia, revolusi daripada kejahilan kepada ilmu dan ketamadunan, revolusi cara hidup dari kemalasan kepada kehidupan yang penuh dengan kerajinan dan usaha, revolusi untuk membudayakan syura, keadilan dan kebebasan dalam ruang politik dan masyarakat sivil, revolusi ekonomi daripada negara miskin dan mundur kepada negara maju, revolusi sikap rakyat agar lebih berdaya saing dan berdikari dan revolusi-revolusi lain lagi demi mengangkat martabat manusia Tunisia agar selari dengan konsep ‘Karamah Insaniyah’ (kemuliaan manusiawi). Continue reading

Revisiting Rashid Ganoushi’s Lecture on Secularism post-Arab Spring (March 2012)

Watch the video of the lecture (arabic) here.

The transcript below is provided by: http://www.blog.sami-aldeeb.com/2012/03/09/full-transcript-of-rached-ghannouchis-lecture-on-secularism-march-2-2012/

___________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Ladies and Gentlemen

Mr. Rached Ghanouchi, President of the Nahdha Party in Tunisia, gave an important and historic lecture at CSID-Tunisia last Friday, March 2nd, on « Secularism and Relation between Religion and the State from the Perspective of the Nahdha Party », which was then followed by a frank and open debate with leading scholars, activists, civil society leaders, and politicians from accross the full spectrum, as well as representatives of the Moroccan, Algerian, Egyptian, and American diplomatic missions.

The audience also included the Head of the Constituent Assembly Mustapha Ben Ja’afar, President of ALESCO Muhammad Al-’Aziz Ibn ‘Ashour, the Head of the Higher Committee for Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms in Tunisia Noureddine Hachad, as well as the leaders of various political Parties such as Muhammad Goumani, Abd Al-Wahhab Al-Hani, Murad Ruissi, Muhammad Busairi Bouabdelli, and Khaled Traouli.

We are pleased to send you the full transcript of the lecture which we hope you will find helpful (See below).

Ghannouchi @ CSID

Dr Radwan Masmoudi’s introduction:

In the Name of God the Most Merciful, the Most Beneficent

Ladies and Gentlemen, Distinguished Guests

We welcome all of you in the Center for the Study of Islam and Democracy, we thank you for coming to this symposium and for accepting our invitation to participate in this meeting, through which we aspire to deepen the dialogue and strengthen the National Accord for the success of the democratic transition in Tunisia. As you know, Tunisia is now in front of a historical test which will determine not only the fate of our country but perhaps even that of the region and the Arab World as a whole in the coming period. All eyes are fixed on Tunisia, I just came back from a tour that brought me to Jordan, Egypt and Algeria, and believe me when I say that all sights, laden with great expectations, are directed towards Tunisia. Since it was in Tunisia that the Arab Spring was kick-started to reclaim freedom and dignity, Tunisia has made great strides in this direction over its neighbors and other Arab countries. Everyone expects a lot of us and wonders whether Tunisia will succeed in building a genuine democracy that combines dignity, human rights, justice, and Arabo-Islamic values.

The subject of the relationship between religion and state is one of the most difficult and important issues facing us now at a time when we’re establishing a new constitution and governing system, which we hope will be a democratic system that respects human rights. So, we are delighted to be hosting Professor Rached Ghannouchi, leader of al-Nahdha who in fact is in no need of introduction. But just as a reminder, he is one of the Islamic Tendency Movement’s founders, which became known as al-Nahdha Movement and later al-Nahdha Party after the revolution, and has been the leader of the party ever since and one of the movement’s thinkers and theoreticians. He is also one of the leading thinkers of the Islamist movement both in the Arab and Islamic worlds as a whole. He has written extensively and in depth on such subjects as freedom, democracy, human rights and the relationship of these with Islam.

We are very pleased to host this symposium which we hope will be a dialogue. We could have held this event in a venue of more breadth, but saw fit to keep it small in order for it to be genuinely deep. From our perspective, had we held this meeting in a bigger venue the quality of the debate would have undoubtedly been negatively affected. It is exactly for this purpose that we invited the finest thinkers of various currents, trends, and parties to engage in a real and deep dialogue, to study the subject at hand, and come up with appropriate solutions to it once we have listened to Prof Ghannouchi’s presentation.

Ghannouchi, once again, has militated for democracy and freedom and taken a fierce stand against tyranny which made him pay dearly for his convictions. He was sentenced to death, and thank God, here he is now in his country respected and loved, while he who sentenced him is living in exile. These are some of Ghannouchi’s works:

Our Way to Civilization, Us and the West, the Right to Differ and the Duty of Unity, the Palestinian Issue at a Cross Road, Woman Between the Qur’an and the Reality of Muslims, From the Islamic Thought in Tunisia, Public Freedoms in the Islamic State, Predestination in Ibn Taymiyya’s Thought, Contemplations on secularism and Civil Society, the Islamist movements and points of change, From the Experience of the Islamist Movement in Tunisia, and A Rebellion on Silence.

I will suffice myself with this short introduction, and ask you to join me in welcoming Prof Rached Ghannouchi. Welcome!

 

Transcription of Rached Ghannouchi’s speech:

In the name of God, prayers and peace be upon His Messenger, his household, companions, and supporters.

Ladies and gentlemen, brothers and sisters may God’s peace and blessings be upon you.

I thank the Centre for the Study of Islam and Democracy for giving me the opportunity this evening to speak to this distinguished elite of Tunisian men and women and those coming from abroad. I am not here to teach you anything, since the subject we are here to discuss has no set instructions to be delivered but rather only points of view to be deepened and efforts to reach a common ground that would enable our elite to reach a consensus or at least a quasi-consensus.

Our topic is quite problematic in the sense that it deals with the Islam’s relationship to secularism. Is this relationship one of conflict and disaccord or one of harmony and overlap? Related to this question are issues such as Islam’s relationship to governance, the relation between Islam and Law, which are all contentious matters. Continue reading

STRATA fully support Tunisia’s Revolutionary Constitution!

Three Cheers for Tunisia’s Revolutionary Constitution!


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This week, Tunisia passed a truly historic constitution widely heralded as a progressive and monumental document. 

Here’s just some of what these brave elected representatives agreed upon in the face of strong pressure from the more extreme factions of their parties:

  • Guaranteed equality between men and women
  • A constitutional mandate for environmental protection, only the third country in the world to do so
  • A declaration that health care is a human right, with preventative care and treatment for every citizen
  • democracy with civil laws that respects freedom of religion 
  • An established right to due process and protection from torture

In one stroke, Tunisia’s become more democratic than many Western countries have been for years. 

This is a revolution of democracy and a great victory for human rights — and the more we recognize that, the more Tunisia can shine as an example for the Western and the Arab world!

MESSAGE FOR TUNISIAN LEGISLATORS: We , the citizens of the world, applaud your bravery in making a strong commitment to universal human values in your constitution. People deprived of democracy around the world look to you to set the example of human rights and democratic principle — hold true to the promises made in this revolutionary document!

 
Please support true democracy by signing this petition here

Sekolah Liberalisma untuk ISMA: Part 1

Dr. Azam Che, 04/02/2014

 

Bingung sebentar membaca akhbar Sinar Harian tadi. Tiba-tiba sahaja ada kolum tulisan Naib Presiden ISMA menuduh bekas Mufti Perlis, Dr. Asri, sebagai memiliki pemikiran liberal (baca sini). Tajuknya mengenai persoalan sama ada DS Najib dan DS Anwar Ibrahim boleh menjaga akidah rakyat. Tajuknya sendiri sudah tidak kena apabila ia berdiri atas premis yang salah, yakni mengatakan adalah menjadi tugas pemimpin Malaysia untuk menjaga akidah (kepercayaan) rakyatnya. Rakyat yang dimaksudkan adalah satu masyarakat yang berbilang kaum, kebudayaan dan kepercayaan, adakah persoalan dalam artikel tersebut ingin mengatakan yang DS Najib dan DS Anwar perlu memastikan yang Islam terus berpegang dengan akidah Islam, yang Kristian terus berpegang dengan akidah Kristian dan begitu juga yang menyembah Ayah Pin juga terus percaya dengan kepercayaan Ayah Pin sebagai tuhan? Juga boleh dipersoalkan, adakah tugas pengurus negara untuk mengurus juga kepercayaan rakyatnya yang merupakan persoalan hati dimana selalunya kepercayaan itu tidak ditonjolkan keluar. Sebab itu ada juga Islam yang munafik yang kerjanya hanya menabur fitnah memecah belah ummat. Dikatakan kepercayaannya adalah Islam tetapi perwatakannya sebaliknya. Begitu juga ada yang sudah sembuny-sembunyi masuk Islam tetapi di luar masih berlakon sebagai dirinya yang sebelum masuk Islam, semata-mata kerana ingin menjaga hati keluarga. Jadi tugas pemimpin Malaysia perlu menjaga akidah dengan cara yang bagaimana jikalau masalah hati merupakan masalah tersembunyi?

Tetapi yang lebih membingungkan dengan artikel pendek tanpa isi tersebut, tiba-tiba sahaja dikaitkan Dr Asri dengan fahaman liberal, yang tidak ada kena mengena dengan tajuk artikel. Bukti di dalam artikel tersebut tidak satu pun diberikan contoh mengenai pandangan Dr Asri yang bersifat liberal. Jikalau benar ada pandangan Dr Asri yang bersifat liberal, tunjukkan bukti dan berikan hujah dan bukan sekadar melabel setiap yang tidak bersetuju dengan pandangan anda sebagai liberal, evangelis, LGBT, COMANGO, dan pelbagai lagi perkataan-perkataan yang sinonim dengan kesesatan dalam Islam. Dimanakah prinsip penting yang selalu ditekankan di dalam tarbiyyah di dalam menyikapi orang Islam biasa, apatah lagi ulama, yang berbeza pandangan dengan kita; yakni prinsip ‘bekerjasama dalam perkara yang disepakati dan berlapang dada dalam perkara yang khilaf’. Dr Asri, dalam mengeluarkan pandangannya samaada di dalam blog atau di dalam rakaman video youtube, selalu menggunakan hujah Al-Quran dan Sunnah. Sebagai sebuah organisasi Islam, ISMA sepatutnya memberikan hujah Al Quran dan Sunnah juga dalam mengulas pandangan Dr Asri dan bukan dengan secara mudah melabel beliau sebagai liberal seolah-olah semua pandangannya ada diselitkan agenda liberalisasi. Juga persoalan yang membingungkan adalah mengapa akhbar Sinar Harian mengeluarkan artikel ini yang jelas sebagai fitnah dan tidak mempunyai apa-apa isi dan bukti selain dari retorik kosong mengulang-ulang beberapa perkataan yang entah mereka sendiri fahami ataupun tidak. Tin kosong sememangnya mengeluarkan bunyi yang kuat. Pendek kata, artikel tersebut tidak mempunyai ‘locus-standi’ untuk ditegakkan di hadapan orang yang mempunyai akal. 

Pandangan ISMA dalam isu kalimah Allah

Susah sebenarnya untuk mengatakan punca sebenar artikel dari pemimpin ISMA tersebut menuduh Dr Asri sebagai liberal. Kemungkinan besar, puncanya adalah sikap Dr Asri dalam mengulas isu nama Allah (baca sini) yang tidak selari dengan pandangan ISMA. Bacalah sendiri dan lihat sama ada mengandungi unsur-unsur liberalisma di situ? Kalaupun tidak bersetuju dan mempunyai dalil tersendiri untuk membangkang beliau, tidak perlulah melabel dan memfitnah. Berlapang dadalah dengan hujah beliau yang didasari ilmu.

Sikap ISMA sendiri dalam mengulas isu kalimah Allah di Malaysia adalah pelik lagi tidak konsisten. Mereka sendiri pada awalnya begitu bersungguh-sungguh memainkan isu ini sehingga menjengkelkan pelbagai pihak dan menanamkan kebencian yang boleh membawa kepada ketidakstabilan di dalam keharmonian masyarakat majmuk di Malaysia. Sepatutnya mereka membenarkan sahaja mahkamah melaksanakan tugasnya dalam menghakimi isu ini dan dari awal-awal lagi menyeru rakyat agar bertenang disamping menyelitkan agenda dakwah Islam agar orang ramai merasa senang dengan Islam. Tetapi sebaliknya, mereka berterusan mengatakan agenda Kristian yang ingin menggunakan kalimah Allah sebagai agenda mengkristiankan ummat Islam (baca sini dan sini). Orang Kristian yang mempunyai pandangan mereka berhak menggunakan kalimah Allah dilabel sebagai musuh ummat Islam (baca sini), satu tuduhan yang boleh dikategorikan sebagai hasutan. Malah lebih daripada itu, mereka juga memanggil Kristian yang ingin menggunakan kalimah Allah sebagai golongan pelampau Kristian (baca sini) dan kurang ajar (baca sini). Kemudian mereka membuat ‘u-turn’ yang pelik apabila mereka menyeru orang ramai untuk tidak menjadikan isu kalimah Allah sebagai punca perbalahan kaum dan agama (baca sini); pelik kerana mereka adalah yang mula-mula menggunakan perkataan tidak enak kepada kaum dan agama lain sehingga mencetuskan kemarahan orang ramai. Di dalam artikel terbaru ini, presiden ISMA mengatakan semua pihak akan mendapat hak masing-masing dan sebarang perbalahan boleh diselesaikan melalui penguatkuasaan undang-undang sedia ada. Bagaimana mungkin presiden ISMA tiba-tiba mengatakan semua pihak akan mendapat hak masing-masing sedangkan ISMA sendiri menyanggah kenyataan DS Najib yang membenarkan hak orang Kristian di Sabah dan Sarawak untuk terus menggunakan kalimah Allah (baca sini). Malah, ISMA sendirilah yang pada awalnya galak memainkan isu ini dan mengganggu pembicaraan kes ini di mahkamah, dan tiba-tiba mereka pula mengatakan isu ini perlu mengikut saluran undang-undang.

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PR Blunder in PR’s (Satay) Kajang Move

Dr. Azam Che and Nazri Noor, 29/01/2014

Satay Kajang Blunder

 

The shocking and yet cunningly obvious political manoeuver to position Datuk Seri Anwar as Kajang’s future ADUN in the hope of taking over the Menteri Besar (MB) of Selangor’s post; has certainly amused most political commentators. Critics from both sides of the political divide have been furiously fanning the gossip of ‘behind the scene’ politics. If these side-line gossips are left unheeded by Pakatan Rakyat (PR) leaders, the manoeuver could backfire and Datuk Seri Anwar would be sacrificed at the altar of Machiavellian real-politics; and Selangor, the crown jewel of Malaysia’s economy, would return to its previous ruler, the Barisan Nasional (BN). If Datuk Seri Anwar loses at Kajang’s by-election, this would most likely be the end of his political career. This scenario is certainly worse than the current status-quo where Tan Sri Khalid is still perceived as a competent Selangor MB, through his prudent, thrifty and transparent policies, led to the increase of state reserves by billions of ringgit thus halting BN’s strategic efforts in trying to topple PR in Selangor. Good management of public perception must always be taken into consideration in any part of political strategic planning if PR wants to keep on choking the life-blood out of the current federal government.

Anwar’s Bad PR

Datuk Seri Anwar has certainly made quite a few of disastrous PR blunder in the past. Besides the constant effort from BN’s spin-doctor to paint him as a sex-crazed Jewish-NOW-conspirator on a mission to destroy the Malay special rights in Malaysia, he certainly did not do himself a favour due to several PR mistakes such as:-

  • Anwar made a promise that he would form a new federal government on 16th of September 2008, by claiming that several BN’s component party MPs would defecting, which didn’t come to realization.
  • In 2012, in a WSJ interview, Anwar said that he supported the two-state solutions for Palestine/Israel crisis, which was and still is a very unpopular view in Malaysia
  • He is now running for ADUN position in Kajang even though he famously said that he would retire after GE13.

People have been cynically suggesting that he would settle for MB of Selangor position because he could not reach the top post as the Malaysian PM. At least the Selangor MB could enjoy better pay than the PM. Lucky for him, today, the PKR strategist, Rafizi Ramli, who is still clean from any wrong doings and political smear, gave a statement that he would bear all responsibility of designing this manoeuver and Datuk Seri Anwar was portrayed as the reluctant team player sacrificing himself.

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