Indonesia: Muslim clerics allege Valentine’s Day leads to “free sex”

All of the possible bad puns aside, there is the usual question of priorities. Again, imagine if the same clerics tackled so-called “extremism” in Muslim communities with such directness and zeal. “Indonesian clerics warn against Valentine’s Day’s ‘free sex’,” from Agence France-Presse, February 13:

Muslim leaders in Indonesia told the faithful not to celebrate Valentine’s Day because it is sinful and leads to “free sex”. “We forbid Muslims to celebrate Valentine’s Day,” said Abdullah Cholil, an East Java leader of Nahdlatul Ulama, the mainly Muslim country’s biggest Islamic organisation. “The day is often celebrated by young, unmarried people. They celebrate Valentine’s Day by holding hands or having free sex, which they are not supposed to be doing,” he said. Lalilurrahman, the East Java branch chief of the country’s highest Islamic body, the Indonesian Ulema Council, said the celebration of romance and love was a Western tradition and therefore should not interest Muslims. “Valentine’s Day originated from Western culture. It’s not in accordance with Islamic and Eastern culture,” he said. Shopping centres in Indonesia’s major cities are decked out with Valentine’s Day gift offerings as well as displays marking Chinese New Year. Most Indonesians are moderate Muslims and few pay much attention to the moral edicts of local Islamic leaders.

There’s the standard boilerplate about Modern, Moderate Indonesia. But the usual lack of clarity about what constitutes “moderation” prevails. Here, AFP equates it with inattention or indifference.

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Comments

  1. says

    “Most Indonesians are moderate Muslims and few pay much attention to the moral edicts of local Islamic leaders.”–from the article.

    The reality is that polls indicate that 53% of Indonesians want a strict application of sharia law in every Muslim country, 78% want to keep Western values out of Islamic countries, 85% were against allowing proselytizing to change people’s religious beliefs, and 74% opposed free expression such as is allowed in the U.S.

    Source: World Public Opinion, April, 2007.

    Also note: 87% of the “Indonesians” were Muslims. If the poll results were to exclude non-Muslims, the support for sharia etc. would be higher.

  2. says

    Indonesia: Muslim clerics allege Valentine’s Day leads to “free sex”

    Which as any person with a sense of decency knows is FAR worse than killing your daughter.

    Those mohammedans, they sure are moral, lemme tell ya!

  3. says

    “Valentine’s Day originated from Western culture. It’s not in accordance with Islamic and Eastern culture,” he said.
    ==============================

    Isn’t this a confirmation that we have a clash of cultures here? Direct the apologists and Muslim Huntingtonphobes to argue with this guy instead of you.

    What does “Islamic and Eastern culture” mean? Does it mean “Islamic culture”?

  4. says

    For god’s sake, they’ve misunderstood completely. It’s not free. You have to pay for the roses. You have to pay for the bonbons.

  5. says

    Jim, thanks for posting the link to Sheik Yer’Mami’s site. Some Muslim “words of wisdom” about love:

    Ibn Taymiyah (may Allaah have mercy on him) said in Majmoo’ al-Fataawa (10/185):

    “If a man is in love with a woman, even if she is permissible for him, his heart remains enslaved to her, and she can control him as she wishes, even though outwardly he appears to be her master, because he is her husband; but in fact he is her prisoner and slave, especially if she is aware of his need and love for her. In that case, she will control him like a harsh and oppressive master controls his abject slave who cannot free himself from him. Rather he is worse off than that, because enslavement of the heart is worse than enslavement of the body.”

    Islam is so sick. Rape, forced “marriage”, sex with little children, sex with slaves-all entirely Halal. Homosexual rape is entirely acceptable, as long as it’s meant to humiliate”any actual same-sex affection is of course entirely forbidden. The idea that people can simply love each other is utterly alien to Islam.

    Loving another human being”*even your wife*”is a sin against the vicious “Allah”.

    Valentine’s Day celebrates children’s love for their parents, especially their moms; affection for their teachers; friendship with schoolmates, girls and boys; puppy love; new love; married love‚Äďand sure, too much chocolate and the occasional skanky gifts from Fredrick’s of Hollywood (If they’re even still around).

    Tomorrow my husband and I”like couples all over the non-Muslim world”are going to go out to see a film (vintage Capra, in our case) and have dinner at one of our favorite restaurants. We’ve been together twenty-one years now, and I love him very deeply.

    I will also celebrate the fact that we live in a place where we can express that love without worrying about a visit from the “religious police”.

    I wish everybody here a Happy Valentine’s Day!

  6. says

    If a man is in love with a woman, even if she is permissible for him, his heart remains enslaved to her, and she can control him as she wishes, even though outwardly he appears to be her master, because he is her husband; but in fact he is her prisoner and slave, especially if she is aware of his need and love for her. In that case, she will control him like a harsh and oppressive master controls his abject slave who cannot free himself from him. Rather he is worse off than that, because enslavement of the heart is worse than enslavement of the body.”

    I have attempted on many occasions to point out the peculiarities of islamic marriage as well as many other vile aberrations found in islam. Most people look at me like I am an escaped mental patient and try to change the subject, but once in a while I get some backup.

    I recently attended a seminar on camellias and was talking to a group of people outside in the parking lot. The sole mosque in my city is across the street from the building where the seminar was held and someone brought up the subject of islam, one thing led to another, and soon we were having a spirited conversation. I was explaining that women are considered chattel in islam and that marriage is merely a contract transferring ownership of the female from one man to another, not a ceremony in which vows are exchanged. I explained that the “bride” did not participate in the “arrangements” and most likely did not know her husband, and that romantic love or spousal love is strongly discouraged in islam. An ignorant woman, a pillar of local “high society”, interrupted me in the middle of a sentence and announced that I didn’t know what I was talking about and wanted to know what I had against muslims.

    One of the speakers at the seminar, a retired college professor who grows magnificent camellias, was standing behind some taller people and I hadn’t even noticed her. After the rude interruption, she stepped up and very politely affirmed everything I said and proceeded to elaborate on my comments. She ended her remarks by saying that islam endeavors to alter human nature by vilifying human love. Someone asked her why a religion would condemn love and she explained that when people are incapable of love, they are capable of anything. She pointed out honor killings as an example of muslim cruelty by asking: “How could a parent murder his own child and feel pride instead of grief and shame?” In most cultures, parents unconditonally love their offspring but in islamic cultures, they encourage martyrdom and practice honor killings. It was a very interesting and heartening encounter.

  7. says

    Susan –

    in Nonie Darwish’s ‘Cruel and Usual Punishment’ she describes what happened to her when, as a teenager (fizzing, no doubt, with hormones) she saw an old Hollywood movie depicting a Christian wedding.

    “As a young teenager in the mid-1960s I saw a church wedding for the first time. I was visiting my aunt in Suez, Egypt, and we had gathered around the state-run TV channel to watch an old Hollywood movie.

    “I was very touched by the traditional Christian wedding portrayed in the movie, with church bells and music accompanying the bride as she walked with her father toward the priest where the groom stood waiting.

    “*I listened carefully to the sacred marriage vows first recited by the priest and then repeated by the groom and the bride* {my emphasis – dda}.

    “It was especially moving for me to watch the groom vow to be loyal, love, honor and cherish his one and only wife as a sacred covenant between the two before God.

    “They were obviously in love, and the love was reinforced by the words that their religious leader told them to repeat to each other.

    “I wept over the holiness of the event and the beauty of the words, *but most importantly the equality of the vows* {my emphasis – dda}.

    “I listened to the solemn words of the priest explaining that the man and woman would leave their father and mother and start a new beginning. In marriage one man and one woman are held together as one flesh; from then on they function together as one.

    “That was when I realized [that] there was a huge difference between marriage under my religion, and the Christian marriage, but I could not pinpoint it exactly. Was it the ceremony?

    “I asked my aunt, ‘How come we {i.e., we Muslims – dda} do not have weddings like that?”
    ‘My aunt could not help but notice my ambivalence and said, somewhat defensively, ‘We have glamorous weddings too’. Her answer missed the point that I was addressing and [that I was] eager to understand.

    “Even though I was too young to understand all the dynamics, I noticed that the Christian marriage brought the husband and wife together as equals and apart from their families.

    “The wife was not represented by her father, and no-one else recited the vows for her. There was no virginity check, and the father did not register any dowry for the bride. The bride’s dignity was kept intact. *More importantly, the husband had to vow loyalty to his one and only wife* {my emphasis – dda}.” From ‘Cruel and Usual Punishment’, chapter 2, “The Marriage Contract: the Lock on the Gender Cage”.

    ‘The husband had to vow loyalty to his one and only wife’.

    *That* is perhaps the single greatest good thing that, from the beginning right up to the present day, the Christian/ised portion of dar al harb has had to offer to any Muslimah with even an ounce of native wit who manages to peek across the fence; if just once, like Nonie did, at an impressionable age, she finds out that in the lands of the non-Muslims, *our* religion and our laws permit JUST ONE WIFE PER MAN, and that *the lady gets to choose and speak for herself*, then the young Muslimah, as Nonie was, may be haunted by longing for that possibility, which she *knows* she cannot expect within Islam.

    Nonie, in the end, living in a well-to-do and somewhat westernised family which was in no hurry to sell her off, found herself a Christian Copt for a husband who was prepared to rattle off the shahada to protect them both from the assassins. The two of them then escaped from dar al Islam to America where, over time (Nonie doesn’t go into the details in ‘Cruel and Usual Punishment’, but I assume she describes the process in ‘Now They Call Me Infidel’) Nonie jettisoned Islam altogether and converted to the Christianity she now actively and publicly professes…one assumes that at the same time her husband (no doubt delighted by his wife’s spiritual awakening) sloughed off his expedient ‘conversion’ and returned to the faith of his birth.

    I suspect that for Nonie her journey out of Islam began in that living room in Cairo, as a romantic hormone-high teenage girl, looking at a movie representation of a Christian wedding.

    I know, too, from reports that filter out from Christian sources, such as the Bible society, that very often though not always, when a Muslim man converts to Christianity, if he is married his wife soon follows…and that when she does follow, it is primarily because she is attracted by the surprising – and pleasant – change in the way her husband behaves toward her. “Husbands, love your wives”, commands St Paul; and I suspect that many an earnest Muslim convert to Christianity, setting out dutifully to obey this peculiar ‘rule’ of his new faith, has been ‘bowled over’ by the (highly delightful) results.