Monday, January 05, 2009

Ibra dances around the hot coals..

Naimbe' in his comment says "I know writing a comment that has anything to do with Islam could be akin to a walk through burning coal. This has become so because some people believe that they have a monopoly on religion. And this perceived monopoly leads to intolerance. And intolerance, as you say is a very disturbing development regarding the religious discourse - not only in the Maldives but in the entire Islamic Ummah. "

Ibrahim Ismail, Member of Parliament, dances around the burning coals of the issue of :
"Everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion; this right includes freedom to change his religion or belief, and freedom, either alone or in community with others and in public or private, to manifest his religion or belief in teaching, practice, worship and observance"

in this posting at his blog.

"Belief is a deeply personal thing, and religious belief is a commitment one makes to oneself, out of one’s own volition. No matter what is said and done, ultimately, religion for each person has a profoundly different meaning as it relates to the psyche of each individual which is shaped by one’s own circumstances, past and present."

Ibra also says :

"I tend to lean towards the progressive end of the spectrum, which stems from my belief that Allah meant us to live our life to the full and that times change and divergent and progressive thinking should not be constricted in the name of religion. This is not say that I deny un-crossable boundaries in Islam."

It will be interesting to know what those "un-crossable boundaries" are for Ibra.

Dhivehistan Report commends and applauds Ibra for taking on the issue. We look forward to more thoughts from Ibra on the subject.


  1. Anonymous10:27 PM

  2. Why should "some people believe they have a monopoly on religion"? It is because they are given this monopoly on a silver platter by the society.

    The general mentality of the society need to change for this "monopoly" to be controlled.

    And that would be an almost impossible task.

  3. I agree with Simon.

    We should stop treating these so-called Islamic "scholars" as having some monopoly on religion.

    We have the translations of the Quran and Hadith at home so why do we need other people to act as interpreting mediators for us?

  4. Simon and Hilath,
    What people need is education in human rights, individual liberties and the protection of minority rights. I agree that it is an almost impossible task.
    But if eloquent people like Ibra clearly and strongly stand up for the rights of minorities, instead of dancing around the issues maybe we will get somewhere better than this current situation.

  5. Dhivehi Christian2:57 PM

    Ibra's "uncrossable boundaries" are apparent in his statemenmt that he is "a deeply religious Muslim". Apostasy, freedom of religion, virtues of supremacy of Islam, extermination of the kuffar and inferiority of the "people of the Book" are some of those uncrossable boundaries that come to mind.