Thursday, April 02, 2009

Another look at a Port Dickson sunset, and what I'm reading

I have just finished reading Gabriel Garcia Marquez's "Love and Other Demons". That should be required reading for all those Malaysian students in the UK* who think they were possessed of djinns. (Alternatively, they could start studying their own religion for themselves, instead of believing the rubbish others say they ought to believe.)

A lovely, lyrical book - and a look at what can happen when people use their fear of the unknown and hysteria to make decisions, instead of reason and rationale and science.

An education is supposed to make you think.

This is a direct quote from the article in The Star* newspaper the other day:

"While there are cyber laws to nab high-tech criminals, those who practise black magic get off scott free due to a lack of legislation to bring them to book. Towards this end, a non-governmental organisation in Britain has proposed the introduction of sihir laws to nail those who cast evil spells." ... "Without sihir laws, anybody is free to practise black magic without fear of being arrested..." etc etc. (They are Malaysians, aiming for such laws in Malaysia, rather than UK, I suppose).

In other words, these maniacs want to return us to a time similar to those centuries when women (and you know what? It almost always was women!) were killed for owning a black cat, or because the man next door had a mysterious illness the doctors couldn't cure, or the neighbour's cow died. Salem, anyone?

This pernicious rubbish being spouted in UK is not Islam. It is superstition, and vicious at that, because there is always a victim to be villified. And the victim is the person accused, not the person who had bad luck or a sick cow or who failed their exams.

And of course, black magic was always so easy to prove. For example, in days gone by, what you did was throw a person in the local duck pond with their hands bound. If they drowned, they were innocent... I wonder what the modern equivalent is? I'm sure these clowns will think of something. The djinns apparently chat to them quite happily - in Malay, of course.

*See my post of 31st March. Or see The Star 30th March
*To be fair to The Star, I imagine that they are bringing this to the attention of the public because they are as alarmed as I am...

4 comments:

Jo said...

It is scary, people do practice black magic as well as white magic, but up til now I didn't realise anyone actually believed in it. Most sane people dismiss it as nonsense, but from your articles it appears that there are gullible people out there who can be preyed upon by others. Remind me not to buy a black cat.

Lovely picture.

Ted Mahsun said...

It's not The Star playing an April Fool's joke is it?

glenda larke said...

You know, Ted, that was my immediate reaction too, especially as the whole thing seemed so bizarre - these djinn chasers had formed an organization called "Islamic Support and Nurture Group - or PISANG for short - PISANG*???

But the article was published on the 30th March.

Other really laughable stuff - they said Scottish djinns speak with a Scottish accent...and "We usually ask where the djinn is from as well as its name" and they had encountered djinns from countries like South Korea, Jordan, Australia - and they mostly spoke Malay!!!

However, they also said things like they "have approached the Dept of Islamic Development Malaysia (JAKIM)" - and I rather think JAKIM would take a dim view of being made the butt of an April fool joke.

They scare me to death because they want to set up Salem-type witch trials and send Islam and Malays back to the dark ages, scared of things that go bump on the night, and then encourage them to blame some poor fellow who looked at them cross-eyed.

And someone is funding these guys. They are travelling the world and they do things like screen 1,200 students in Cairo, not to mention others in Yemen, Australia, Brunei, Japan and Singapore, not to mention Malaysia (20,000).

One of them calls himself an Islamic medical practitioner - when he sounds more like a horror story. He is proud of the fact that he makes people hysterical, and has them screaming.

I want to know why there has been no reaction to this nonsense. How do conmen get away with idiocy, simply by saying it is done in the name of religion??


*Banana

bibliobibuli said...

absolutely! i was horrified when i read about this chap too. and i'm even more horrified that you are the only person who has actually spoken out about this as far as i can see from the blogs. this man and his PISANG are charlatans!

i am actually an expert in demonic possession. and in a sense that isn't a joke.

i used to look after all the hostel students when i taught in a bush school in nigeria. every so often i got woken from sleep by students knocking on my door and telling me that their friend had been possessed by demons and was on the verge of behaving vilently towards herself and others.

of course there were no demons - just enough misery around (no water, not enough food, being bullied) to cause a mental health crisis. the best way for me to "cure" them was to give them something to help them sleep, and then when they woke up (calm) talk to them and find out the root of their problems. it invariably worked and i got something of a reputation as a bomoh meself!