On yoga…


Haven’t been blogging for awhile now, been so buried in work and preparations for the upcoming wedding, but today, I chanced upon this little gem :

PUTRAJAYA: The National Fatwa council has declared that the yoga practice which involves three elements of physical movements, worshipping and chanting as haram (prohibited) in Islam.

Read the rest from The Star and Malaysiakini here…

First of all, what I understand is that when one practices the three elements of yoga, one committing a ‘haram’ act. OK, fair enough. Just a very quick and simplistic list of what else is ‘haram’ for Muslims – drinking, use of recreational drugs, smoking (in some places), premarital sex, extramarital sex, sex within the same gender – basically any sex sans legal spouse, OK? – and for women, walking out of the house without your husband’s consent or not covering your hair… That is ‘haram’. Don’t forget, not praying five times a day too… A disclaimer before I get skewered for putting this down – I am not an expert at the subject, and I myself am a tenuous Muslim at best, and am guilty of several of the abovesaid sins, so forgive my incomprehensive and incomplete, and possible erroneous list…

On a daily basis, I see a whole lot of people, presumably some of them are Muslims, engaging in the said acts… So what about yoga, newly declared ‘banned’ for Muslims? I suppose we will continue seeing yoga classes being filled by Muslims. And I don’t expect them to bat an eyelid at the ‘fatwa’, because these same people, could be committing other sins and not giving a hoot about it… Yoga? Nahh… Don’t worry about it!

Back to the subject at hand – yoga being declared as ‘haram’ when a Muslim practices all three elements. I wonder, is the faith of Malaysian Muslims so feeble and fragile, that practicing yoga will erode their beliefs so irrecovacably?

Do the authorities feel the need to try and control every aspect of Malaysian life, that we are now no longer allowed to choose their means of exercising or relaxing? All I want to say is, lighten up, and have some faith in humankind, you people.The beauty of Islam is that we are taught that the difference between humans and animals is that we are blessed with a mind – that can rationalize and decide what is best for each and everyone of us. Try using it once in a while, you might find the human mind to be a wonderful and sharp tool with which to negotiate the world we live in…

God works in mysterious ways, and banning yoga won’t make such a massive difference – if they had no faith to begin with, it would not mean a rat’s behind whether they do yoga or not…

I cannot imagine how I would be losing my faith this weekend, since my regular gym class is ‘yoga’ – Jasmine.


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