Sunday, August 29, 2010

Can Non-Muslim Enter The Mosque?

Another case that involving religion matter.
In these past few days, same thing happens over and over again. First the surau red paint splashed, then the doa prayer for not mentioning Agong’s name, and now the case of non-muslim entering surau.
About the non-muslim entering the surau, at first I heard about this case, I thought that particular MP (Teo Nie Ching), wearing a sexy clothes (mini skirt) and enter the surau. But later, when I saw the picture in the internet, I got to know that she just not wearing scarf to cover her head, other than that she did cover herself with a proper clothes.

Reacting to the issue, the Selangor Islamic Affairs Council (MAIS) said it would issue a warning letter to Teo about her action, which was said to have upset the Sultan.
Well, I’m no Yusuf Qardawi. But I strongly believed that there’s nothing wrong for non-muslim to enter mosque or surau, and yes, with few conditions such as :
1.       Non-Muslims are allowed to enter mosques – other than the Sacred Mosque in Makkah with a prior permission of Muslims.
2.       They must have a sound reason for entering the mosque.
3.       They should respect the decorum of the mosque and keep in mind that it is a sacred place   of worship.
4.       Both men and women are not allowed to uncover their`Awarah(parts of the body which should not be exposed in front of others) when entering the mosque.

And the case here with this MP is regarding to the number 4 above, where she should cover parts of the body but she failed to do so in covering her head with scarf.
BUT, In Islam there is something called Fiqh Al-'Awlawiyyat, or understanding priorities. We should keep in our mind the rules of priorities. The common sense rule is that when u are confronted with two evils, u may accept the lesser evil in order to fend off the major one and achieve greater good.
So in this case we are faced with a choice, either turn away a non-Muslim from ur place of worship and let that person not know about Islam and have a bad impression of Islam and Muslims, or u allow her to come, even without proper dress, and then learn about Islam and possibly become a Muslim. If this is the choice then it is better to accept the person without proper dress and treat her well. Hopefully she will learn some good things about Islam and Allah may guide her to the right path.
Remember, Islam encourages tolerance and peaceful co-existence between Muslims and non-Muslims. If non-Muslims enter a mosque to deliver speeches that may lead to a better understanding, then it is welcomed and religiously recommended. We have to remember that Islam is the religion of constructive dialogue in the fullest sense.
 Sometimes I just don’t understand with some of the party who are so desperate to gain people attention. Maybe these desperate politicians should find other issue to fight for their cause. Please do not spoil the name of Islam.
We have known a lot of non Muslims who visited mosques many times and discussed with the mosque officials before they convert to Islam. They cannot learn Islam in their own homes because they will not feel the spirit or the guidance easily. By visiting mosques they will see there is no idol in the mosques and they will ask whom do we pray to. That will give us the opportunity to explain to them on the concept of tauhid. There are a lot of rahmat in the mosque so we should not prevent anybody to come to mosque if they come in peace.
And I also wonder, why so mad with Chinese people who not cover her head while the wives of our Muslims leaders don’t even bother to do so? Covering ur head, for a Muslimah is compulsory in Islam, but many of them don’t bother to practice it, why nobody say anything about this? Why don’t MAIS say anything about this?
So I really think that it is inappropriate to politicise this thing.
But like usual, this issue will be published in the front page of all newspaper for a whole year, and all leaders should just talk about this issue again and again. This will improve country GDP by 1000% annually and make Malaysia a truly developed nation before 2015.
I’m a Muslim and I welcome Teo Nie Ching to the mosque and surau near my house. She was there for a good purpose. My only advice to her is to wear a head scarf next time just to observe the accepted practice.
And yes, before I forget, I want to touch a little bit about Deputy President PAS, Datuk Mahfuz Omar comment over this issue (u can read it here). Mahfuz said :
“Umat Islam juga dibenarkan melakukan ibadah sembahyang walaupun di dalam gereja kerana Saidina Umar al-Khattab pernah melakukannya.
(Muslims are also allowed to perform ritual prayers, even in the church because of 'Umar al-Khattab had done so)
Well, I want to correct something as he might slip his tongue over a fact. The fact is, based on Itmam al-Wafa’ fi sirah al-Khulafa’ book, pages 141, stated that:
When Umar enter into the city, then he went into the Church of the Holy Sepulchre (al-Qiamah) and he sat in the main room of the church. Once it is time for Asr prayer, Umar said to the Patriach, "I intend to perform prayer." Then the Patriach answer: " u may say ur prayers in the church".

But Umar rejected the Patriach’s proposal and prays (outside)
on the steps at the front door of the church alone. After he completed Asr prayer, he (in back then) said to al-Quds Patriach:

"If I do my prayer in the church just now, I feel sure that the Muslim Ummah in the future will state that the Umar prays in this church,
then it can be excuse for them to take over the church from u to build a mosque in its place".
So the fact is, Umar al-Khattab never prayed in church. 


azam baizen said...

Hmph i don't know whether i want to agree with u on dis matter or not. there was a time when a student asked my lecturer why non-muslims cannot enter the prayer hall in the mosque just like what happened to tourists who want to enter masjid negara and other masjids but they can't? He just replied it is because they are kafirs and kafirs aren't 'clean' like Muslims and this is to ensure that we protect our prayer hall from any dirty things. Same goes to us if we want to enter in the prayer hall we must ensure dat we cover our aurah, dress properly and be clean and encourage to have wudu'.

Besides I guess there must be another GOOD reason why the Masjid authorities across the country did not allow the non-Muslims to enter the prayer hall. Maybe they have already seek the permission to allow the non-Muslims from Ulamas and Muftis but they didn't allow them. So it is their job and our job too to follow what the ulamas (jumhur ulama) because they are the expert in Islam. Who knows..

this is just my opinion. hehe

Ummu Mursyid said...

May Allah bring guidance to each and every one of us.. aameeen~

I truly hope Teo wouldn't blame Islam for these 'unnecessary acts' done by 'certain'

Anonymous said...

ouh. i seriously didnt know the fact that saidina umar never pray in d church. d story spread well since i was in school so i thought that it was real..

um, i never know that non-muslim is not allowed to enter surau or masjid. for me, masjid can be a place for many event, like pusat ilmu la kan.. its okay for them to enter as long as they have reason and they r properly mannered n dressed. atleast cover all except for hair.. they are diff from us so we cant force them to be like us. but dats jz my personal opinion..

anyway, agreed wif u~

Fared Isa said...

@ azam baizen

I'm sorry my friend, but i think u need to read more to get to know the real situation here and get to know the facts.

Who says Masjid authorities never allowed non-Muslim to enter Masjid?

On March 1, The National Fatwa Council has decided that non-Muslim tourists can enter the mosque and the prayer room with the condition of getting permission from the management of the mosque and ensuring that their actions do not spoil the holiness of the mosque.

So from here, Teo fitted the conditions above where she was invited by the surau'u people to enter the surau, and she just came to make a donation. So there's nothing that spoil the holiness of the mosque. The only problem here is she's not wear a proper attire, where she should cover her head with scarf.

And which ulamak and mufti are u referring too saying that non-muslims can't enter the mosque?

Nik Aziz, Dr. Asri and Dr. Danial Zainal Abidin are among Ulamak, mufti and the scholar, and none of these guys saying that non-muslim can't enter mosque or surau.

U can visit this links to prove my points.




and I stand for corrected, if u find any of what im saying here is wrong, please correct me, as long as u sure what are u talking about and have some facts with u...thanks my friend... ;)

Anonymous said...

let's get a few fact straight. these are questions that need to be looked into.

1)beside problem with no headscarf, she is also wearing what looks life a SIA stewardess uniform. stewardess are known for wearing revealing clothes or something that show curve of their body.

2)she is mixing with men inside part of the surau. if PAS Kelantan does not allow men and women to queue in one line at supermarket counter, wouldn't it be more wrong mingling together in a surau?

3)from the picture it looks like she is giving a speech to a bunch of males. where is the precedent of this ever happened? except maybe the sesat Aminda Wadud.


azam baizen said...

it seems that i am out-to-date bout the new fatwa.thanz for clearing that up..

The-Thorn-Within said...

Media di kawal selia.. perlu ikut telunjuk.. mesti patuh, walau pun merosakkan keharmonian negara.. ini semua kerana kuasa.. kuasa itu duit, duit itu raja di dunia.. akhirat mereka belakang kira.. sampai ke tahap melibatkan raja-raja, tak sampai 24 jam terus murka walau tanpa usul periksa, atau skrip sudah di sedia.. tak pa.. PRU13 kita

Fared Isa said...

@ anon

i. I believe that's kebaya, and yes maybe it looks a little bit similiar with the SIA stewardess attire. But please understand the situation here, she was not expecting that the surau people were going to invite her in, otherwise I believe she would even prepared scarf to cover her head.

ii. I don't quite agree with the term 'mingling'. did u even seen the whole picture?

iii. are u kidding me by saying this? have u ever attended to any Forum Perdana or ceramah agama where sometimes the speaker is a woman? or have u never seen Rosmah Mansur giving speech in front of hundreds of guys? well if not, u can easily seen it by turning on ur tv.

why want to complicate this matter?

there's huge number of Muslims womans out there in our country that don't even bother to cover their head, don't even bother to attend to any mosque or surau. So why want to be so mad when Chinese woman comes to surau?

DO u want to turn away a non-Muslim from ur place of worship and let that person not know about Islam and have a bad impression of Islam and Muslims, or u allow her to come, even without proper dress, and then learn about Islam and possibly become a Muslim.

If this is the choice then it is better to accept the person without proper dress and treat her well.

Hopefully she will learn some good things about Islam and Allah may guide her to the right path.

Anonymous said...

The “Wise” Men And The Elephant: How Our Opinion Can Get Us In Trouble

When I was in seventh grade (a very long time ago), I memorized a delightful poem called The Wise Men and the Elephant written by John G. Saxe. Recently I found a very appropriate application to the Quran and specifically to 43:40: Can you make the deaf hear; can you make the blind see, or those who are far astray? Here is the first verse of the poem:
It was six men of Hindustan,
To learning much inclined,
Who went to see the elephant,
(Though each of them was blind);
That each by observation
Might satisfy the mind.

So here you have six men who are physically blind but are very intelligent and wise. They appear interested in acquiring knowledge. The next six verses describe what happens as each man approaches the elephant. The first falls against its side and so declares that the elephant is like a wall. The second touches the tusk and immediately concludes that something so sharp is like a spear. The third grabs the trunk and boldly announces that the elephant is like a snake. The fourth feels around the knee and knows that the elephant is like a tree. The fifth touches the ear and recognizes a fan. The sixth gets hold of the tail and declares it’s like a rope.

Here’s the final verse:
And so these men of Hindustan
Disputed loud and long,
Each in his own opinion,
Exceeding stiff and strong.
Though each was partly in the right;
They all were in the wrong!

And that’s the heart of the matter. Each of these supposedly wise men had taken a piece of the whole picture and drawn their own conclusions, and then they refused to be shaken from their opinion. Instead of pooling their information and looking at the whole picture, each one stuck to his own view and declared that it was the truth.

Anonymous said...

Now, let’s take this one step further. Each of these “wise” men goes back to his own village and passes this information on to his people. If they are people who have seen an elephant, they might laugh at and disregard him. BUT he’s the “wise” man; he’s the respected and highly regarded “expert” whose opinion counts for much more than the ordinary man. So in spite of their own senses telling them this man is wrong, the people might just change their minds and decide, “Yes, by george, the elephant is like a rope (or fan or snake).” And if they’re people who have never seen an elephant, they will readily accept this expert testimony and probably not investigate for themselves. And someone who finds a picture of an elephant and tries to bring this to the attention of the community will be ridiculed, persecuted, perhaps even killed.

This is the danger in following someone else’s opinion and not investigating information for ourselves. This is the danger in thinking that “wise” men must be right because they talk well and impressively, or the majority must be right just by sheer numbers. And this is the danger in looking at only part of the Quran and not taking the Quran as a whole. Remember: Though each was partly in the right; they all were in the wrong!

You cannot make the dead, nor the deaf, hear the call, once they turn away. Nor can you guide the blind out of their straying. You can only be heard by those who believe in our revelations, and decide to become submitters. [30:52-3]

You shall not accept any information, unless you verify it for yourself. I have given you the hearing, the eyesight, and the brain, and you are responsible for using them. [17:36]

Among the people, one may impress you with his utterances concerning this life, and may even call upon GOD to witness his innermost thoughts, while he is a most ardent opponent. [2:204]

Anonymous said...

@Fared Isa

why you address me as anon? bottom of my post is my pseudonym, it's FC.

first, Forum Perdana or Ceramah agama are not conducted in surau or masjid. duh! how could you not get that when i said referring to the picture, i meant giving speech in a surau. inside the male prayer's hall in front of male crowd and not giving speech in general. there is a difference.

since when to learn islam is to come and look inside a surau. it's not even an islamic centre it's just surau where mostly people come and pray.go buy a book or go to perkim man. she's a yb, she knows better. of course DAP track record of not respecting institution's dress codes does not help either. remember one yb that got kicked out for refusing to wear songkok.

but of course she could plead ignorance and rightly it's not all her fault. those who let her in should be held accountable. their judgment are questionable. their power regarding surau management should be revoked from that day onwards.


Amal Asyura said...

I agree with most of your point especially when you said that we must choose the lesser of two evil. (I have not go through Fiqh Al-Awlawiyyat yet). I wonder why some ppl make this issue so complicated. Islam is a very tolarable religion hence this should not became an issue.

If a woman can give talks and lectures in forum perdana in front of men, why she cant give the same thing just because she is in sarau? This is so weird. I have once heard a lecture in the surau given by a female presenter in front of both male and female crowd and there is no problem about it.

I can see that FC make his judgement based solely on his generalization towards non-Muslim who high in power. He simply said when she is YB, she should known better. How do you know that she knows all the rules/ adab in surau? She may know hijab is obligation for Muslim women but as she is non-Muslim, she just simply thought that she does not have to wear the same thing. Bersangka baik saudaraku.

To be fair, I thought the YB itself should learn how to respect others religion so that nobody would make a fuss about it.

Keep up writing Fared =D

thirteen13 said...


nk tnye satu jer...

apa hukum wanita yg didatangi haid memasuki masjid atau surau?..

Anonymous said...

surau or masjid bukan hanya tempat untuk untuk majlis ilmu, perdebatan dan lain2...
sy setuju dengan farid n amal...
selama nih banyak je masjid yang sy pergi P n L ada di kawasan s0lat lelaki...belaja al-quran dan mendengar kuliah...
islam itu mudah...jangan terlalu menutup pintu kebenaran dengan pandangan emosional n politik...
cuma terkilan Teo Nie Ching sepatutnya menutup rambut sebagai menghormati tempat ibadat muslim...

Emira Darmia said...

ahaks..this thing is just a political game..they try to seek attention...

FC : pmpn ngan laki PAS x kelantan x lepak sekali ek...PAS kat kelantan x kasi wonder la dorang buat lane counter kat shopping mall ikowt gender...but time dorang buat rusuhan diri sesama lelaki n pmpn bukan muhrim tu x salah???berhimpit2 n kekadang terlanggar dada tu x salah?? baring ats jalan raya sebelah menyebelah semata2 nk tunjuk perasaan tu x salah??? hukum mana ckp x salah...u tell me...mcm i ckp...mainan politik semua ni..jgn terpengaruh...i do agree with Fared Isa...menda kecik je...dorang perbesarkan....

same goes to the issue jersi baju MU x ley pakai...sgt x relevan..hahaha..mcm tu haramkan semua baju yg ada printed picture...

Anonymous said...

>>ada pihak yang saja nak hancurkan keharmonian antara kaum dan sanggup mempergunakan agama sendri..kita debat pon x guna jika pihak yang memulakan x insaf2<<
BTW, tq Fared Isa atas perkongsian anda..amat tertarik dengan konsep lesser evil, greater good dalam Islam.. ^_^


tikQah said...

hmm...malaysia semakin teruk sekarang..macam2 kes berlaku...sama2 berdoa agar semua ni akan berakhir

kyuri said...

yalah... some of the foreigners did asked a friend of mine, why is it they are not allowed to enter the masjeed. because they are free to enter any masjeed in middle east country~ these people, they dont want to visit our place[masjeed] for seing how beautiful the masjeed is, but they wanted to feel the peace.

ps: let us avoid using 'mosque' word as the word is closely related to mosquito word. instead, use masjeed:)

MasZuber said...

isu yb teoh is another political propaganda by BN.

penat nak layan, but i like this entry.:)

Dakwat Basah! said...

i was there n read ur entry.nice, i just dont know to contribute my comment this time.Islam is the way of life, it's easy and better dont make thing complicated.

Anonymous said...

hahaha . uwarrrghhh!

littleantzz said...

fared isa: it is inappropriate to politicise this thing. yup, i'm really agree with u. ^_^

dakwat basah!: yup, Islam is the way of life, it's easy and DON'T make it complicated.

we always like to fight over this small matter, but how about the SEXY artist on the TV? how? why don't we blame them?

fikah mus said...

i've read an article regarding this.
in my opinion,it's ok, as long as the person respect the mosque.
and who knows,by Allah's will,the person gets hidayah from Him.
and mosque is the most suitable place to attract people to know more about Islam.


wong abdullah said...

Salam Fared, tq for your enlightening post. I would like to share with you a story from one of the lecture at Islamic Outreach ABIM :- there was this naive 9 yrs. old and his friends playing football at a field next to a masjid. One day a man chased them away shouting " kamu Cina, kafir, makan babi, haram jangan kamu dekat dengan rumah Allah ".
Next this bunch of kids shifted their football game to a field beside a church. One day this boy accidentally broke a window at the church during a football game. He was dammed scared when the pastor came to them but he was so surprised at what the pastor said " boys please be more carefull the next time " and give them some sweets too.
So this naive 9 yrs old converted to Christianity during his teen but Allah's will he fell in love with a Muslim girl, became a Muslim and happily married.
So my Muslim brother's and sister's please don't be so narrow minded and please refer to the Holy Quran and Hadis and not some bias man made rules because of your political beliefs.
P.S. : maybe those guys from jais should attend some classes organised by Islamic Outreach ABIM.

fitri said...

i feel that all those ridiculous issues are already is too many coincidences..after one issue than another issue come up.just aperiod of time...politically motivated to divert rakyat attention from questioning all gov scandals...

TheKampungOwl said...

Hi Fared,

You are fair and logical. I like such a reasonable approach. I'm not a Muslim but I don't like it when people of one faith belittles another faith.

What is philosophy? It is when one asks a question. If answer is forthcoming we call it Science. When the answer is not forthcoming (nobody can provide the answer) then we turn to Theology because one needs faith when it comes to something we can't understand or answer.

With reference to the 6 wise men and elephant story,allow me to refer to Plato's Theory of the Cave. People who had always stayed in a cave saw nothing but the shadows of their flickering fire. One day,one of them happened to stray away from the cave. He saw that there was so much more outside. He went back to tell the rest what he saw and for that they killed him.

I notice that many Malaysians claim they know so much when they have such twisted,narrow views of everything. I believe that politicians take things out of context to suit their own agenda. DO NOT let them CON us. Non-Muslims have no quarrel with Islam so there's no necessity to be so paranoid. People who are well-rooted and confident in their beliefs and philosophy of things are not bothered by form. They would rather go for substance.

Fared,what you write is good common sense. I'm sorry to say your English needs some work to make it better. I say we live and let live and refrain from running down any religion or race. Let us believe in the common good and the basic good of all creatures big and small.


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