(accidentally deleted post cos I can be lame that way) *head desk*
My dearest friends are well aware of my radical liberalism tendencies when it comes to matters of faith and religion. If you are not in the know, you can read it here.
Oh, and plus a tiny edit.
I am getting sick of this Syiah witch hunt. Really. What's the point of ratifying the Amman Declaration when we chase imaginary enemies at home? Where is the sincerity in uniting the ummah? The Prime Minister of the day was the one who signed the Amman Declaration: shouldn't this be changed by the powers that be? I mean, the individual states have different sets of regulations but JAKIM is a federal body under the Prime Minister's Office.
The ummah is not homogenous. The ummah is one in its belief that Allah SWT is the One God who is deserving of worship and surrender. THAT IS ALL.
The ummah comes in various colours and sizes, wealth and poverty, miserliness and kindliness. The ummah comes with those who are bound be their belief in superstition and those who holds only to the tenets of science.
When we go to Mekah, either for umrah or for haj, EVERYONE moves in the same direction around the Kaabah. EVERYONE bows in the SAME DIRECTION SIMULTANEOUSLY and PROSTRATES THEMSELVES IN SYNCHRONY following the imam. Why do they do this?
Because they believe in Allah SWT. Because they desire His Mercy and Grace. Because they recognise how minuscule they are in the grand scheme of things and tries to serve Allah SWT in the best way they know how.
It has nothing to do with believing in Hidden Imams or the Mahdi or whatever. It's not about believing the buraq is actually real (personally, I really like the idea of it as some kind of wormhole generator) or believing that it's a make-believe. It has all to do with loving Allah SWT.
If we ask for His Love and Mercy in all our weakness and difference, can't we try to do a small bit of it ourselves towards our fellow believers? You cannot imagine how sad I was to read on JAIS pronouncing that marriage between a Sunni and a Syiah is unacceptable. That is tantamount to declaring someone kufr, and that is something you cannot take lightly. Don't take my word for it: this is written by a scholar who has the authority to speak on such matters.
I was privileged to go to Iran and see first hand how those Syiah live. And you know what? They are no different than you and me. Everyone worries about the economy, everyone bitches about American foreign policy, everyone loves their loved one, do good things, do bad things, and life just go on. The young ones do their best to dress with some personal style though the dress code is stringent (only loose robes, no bright colours or patterns and at least knee length for the ladies).
I saw no horned visages (no, the land of the Syiah is not exactly the land of demons) or red skin or sinister mullahs.
The only horned character I'm interested in.
I discovered that the rabbis, imams and Christian priests in Iran all dress alike. They all wear black robes with black turbans. I mean, isn't that awesome? Externally no different, but only worship differently. The church bells rang on Sunday. The call for prayer resonates over the air daily. No more Zoroasters except in some small pockets in cities closer to India, but they are not homogenous either. Surprisingly, nobody threw stones (verbally or otherwise) to the Sunnis.
So what's with this demented notion that we have to weed them all out? I mean, if you see the situation in Indonesia and Pakistan, the relative homogeny of Islam in Malaysia sounds pretty good. But truly, did the good Lord not say:
"Mankind was one single nation, and Allah sent Messengers with glad tidings and warnings; and with them He sent the Book in truth, to judge between people in matters wherein they differed; but the People of the Book, after the clear Signs came to them, did not differ among themselves, except through selfish contumacy. Allah by His Grace guided the Believers to the Truth, concerning that wherein they differed. For Allah guides whom He will to a path that is straight." - Al Baqarah 2:231
Basically, everyone thinks that they are on the righteous path. Who would like to think that they are happily cartwheeling towards Hellfire? But how sure are we, no matter how rigidly we follow the imams and ustazs and the like, that we are in the right direction? How sure are we that we are among those destined for Paradise without a detour in Hellfire first? We can only do our best and hope that He is pleased with what we have to offer. And guess what?
The Syiah thinks the same way too.
So do the Ahmadiyah.
And the Naqshabandiahs and all the other different sects (and some old school orthodox Christians who reject the trinity concept) who believe that Allah the Most Compassionate, the Most Merciful, is the only one worthy of worship.
Really, how different are we? People devote themselves to pleasing God in their own way. Why can't we let them do it as they see fit? Did they kills people for it? Did they abuse children for it? Did they pour poison into the environment for it?
Seriously. We need to get some perspective.
Let's focus on our commonality and ignore the differences.
I say leave people alone to worship how they like and let Allah SWT sort it out.
p/s Since I was the lame so and so who has accidentally deleted her own post, below are screen caps of the comments. Not because I am so narcissistic that I need to capture any and every response I provoke, but ... you know ... for decorative purposes.