KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (AP)—Malaysia will allow the Malay edition of a Catholic newspaper to resume publication, lifting a ban imposed for its use of the word “Allah,” an official said Thursday—a move likely aimed at assuaging the anger of minorities in this Muslim-majority country.
The Herald, the country’s main Roman Catholic newspaper, will not be allowed to use “Allah” as a translation for “God,” however, said Che Din Yusoh, a senior official with the ministry’s publications control unit.
“If they stop printing the word ‘Allah,’ they can publish anytime,” Che Din told The Associated Press. “You can use another word. It’s permissible for us,” he said, adding that the decision would be conveyed to The Herald by Friday.
The Home Ministry had ordered the Herald last week to stop printing its Malay edition for violating a 2007 ban on the use of the word “Allah,” except to refer to the Muslim God. The government says using the word could confuse Muslims, even though the newspaper is read almost exclusively by Christians. The majority Malays, who form 60 percent of the country’s 27 million people, are all Muslims, and speak and read the Malay language. Islam is the country’s official religion.
Malay is also spoken by many indigenous Christian tribes in Sabah and Sarawak states, who read The Herald’s Malay edition. The newspaper has continued to publish its English, Mandarin and Tamil editions.
The Herald has challenged the ban on “Allah” in court, saying that the translation has been used for centuries and that the Arabic word is a common reference to God that predates Islam. It says the ban is unconstitutional and threatens the religious freedom of the minorities.
Until the court delivers a verdict, however, the newspaper is willing to stop using the word to avoid further confrontation, said the Rev. Lawrence Andrew, editor of the Herald. “We welcome this new view—giving us back the right to use our national language,” he told the AP. A court decision is not likely anytime soon.
The Herald has long been at odds with the government, which has accused it of overstepping its boundaries by commenting on politics and other sensitive issues.
Even from their own perspective, the Islamic despots cannot wage an argument properly. Throughout the Arabic empire, Christians and other monotheists use “Allah” for God, because it is grammatically correct in that language to do so. “Allah” is simply the compound of the definite article with the word for God, creating the distinction thus in Arabic “the God”, the only one. The definite article serves to establish that only one God is thought of, and therefore serves any monotheist conception. What these persecuting Islamic clerics and their statecraft cronies proved is that they don’t understand their own “sacred” language, Arabic, and that they won’t let that get in the way of persecuting Christians anyway. Malaya, no doubt, is brimming with bluster and hellfire, with the added disadvantage of utter ignorance about their own initiatives.
Some modern Arabic translators—former Muslims, are now beginning to use Al-Ilaah, which means The god. It is true that Allah has been used by Christians and Muslims alike, but because of the distinctive differences in their natures, non-Arabic Muslim converts believe that a new translation for converts is vitally necessary. The history of Allah stems more from the god Allat, one of many deities in pre-Islamic Arabia, than from al-Ilaah. At least, so I am told.
Fine, make the distinction. That’s a start in the clarification process which will follow the great war these siege barbarians insist on initiating. It’s a battle between I AM and Molech. I know where I’m putting my creds. Just wish the Catholic Church had more of a handle on what’s going down, if it indeed can muster up for Yahweh and Yeheshua.
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KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (AP)Malaysia will allow the Malay edition of a Catholic newspaper to resume publication, lifting a ban imposed for its use of the word “Allah,” an official said Thursdaya move likely aimed at assuaging the anger of minorities in this Muslim-majority country.The Herald, the country’s main Roman Catholic newspaper, will not be allowed to use “Allah” as a translation for “God,” however, said Che Din Yusoh, a senior Read more »