Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Yoga Ban For Muslims In Indonesia : Only The Physical Exercise Allowed

Muslims in Indonesia have been banned from doing yoga if they engage in Hindu religious rituals during the exercise, the chairman of the country's top Islamic body said on Sunday.

About 700 clerics from the Indonesian Council of Ulemas (MUI) agreed to ban the practice of yoga over fears that the use of Hindu prayers could "erode" Muslims' faith.

"The yoga practice that contains religious rituals of Hinduism including the recitation of mantras is "haram" (forbidden in Islam)," Ma'ruf Amin, a spokesman for the group, said.

"Muslims should not practise other religious rituals as it will erode and weaken their Islamic faith," he added.

The council said Muslims could do yoga as long as it is was only for physical exercise and did not include chanting, mantras or meditation.

The MUI has carved a key role for itself in Indonesia and its pronouncements on everything from Islamic banking to halal food can have a powerful influence. The fatwas are not legally binding but can influence government policy and it is considered sinful to ignore them.

Yoga, an ancient Indian aid to meditation dating back thousands of years, is a popular stress-buster in the Indonesian capital of Jakarta.

Indonesia, which is officially secular, has the world's largest Muslim population. Nearly 90 per cent of the country's 234 million people are followers of Islam. (source: wires)

Also read Rocky's Bru


Anonymous said...

As a muslim,we must agree.If you dont agree,its still your choice. Like Prayer 5x a day.Who would have known wether you pray or not,but remember God knows and He's watching us.But remember He is so Merciful,that we are still alive in this world,and He will give us more in the hereafter.The yoga issue is a non-issue really for muslim.Look back in us and thankful to God.


Anonymous said...

The problem is compounded when only the chanting part of the practice is banned. The only "safe" way is to do it in silence, lest the "Oos","Ahs" and other breathing sounds could be misconstrued as chanting.

Further, if you do yoga in a mixed group where some can chant, you could be mistaken for chanting even if you just open your mouth for breathing. Also, hearing others chant could affect your faith; so no yoga in mixed group should be allowed. You either do it alone or in Muslim only groups and preferably in silence.

Maybe, swimming could be a better exercise option, but then again, one can be too exposed and others over-exposed....oh dear.

As for the "Allah" issue, I have no comments...for now.

Be Happy.

Unknown said...

A typical behaviour of people who a insecure about the creed

Anonymous said...

I suppose its like saying:

"Read the Koran, but don't follow it, cos it might "erode" your humanity and intelligence"

Incredibly the Indonesia fatwa proves my point!

Anonymous said...

In Yoga, the spiritual and physical elements are intricately entwined.
Remove the spiritual element and u might as well call it aerobics.
If there are people who feel that their faith is strong enough to withstand the spirituality of Yoga, THEN DON'T DO IT.
I am Hindu and i see no reason to whitewash or sanitise my heritage for people who have no confidence in their own faith or beliefs.
Leave Yoga alone.

Anonymous said...

Why only focus on yoga? More importantly, I agree on banning smoking for everyone, not just children and pregnant women.

Anonymous said...

karma sutra has lots of chanting ..oi...ban coming..I see


Anonymous said...

There should also be moves to tell Bollywood actors of the Muslim faith from acting in roles that require them to pary the Hindu way.

It may also erode " Muslims' faith!

Any daring Malaysian to inform these actors on this matter?


Anonymous said...

" hey ! u all must not meddle with affairs in other country, u know , no good lah, better mind your own business ...ok, tq,tk !!" said botak .

Anonymous said...

conted : " so, must not campur tangans in gaza u know !tq & tk !!"

Anonymous said...

btw : hamas are killing the palestinents lah !!

k said...

Bagi saya, kalau seseorang tu betul-betul Islam, dia tidak akan dapat dipengaruhi walau apa jua keadaan. Dia juga sentiasa sedar apa yang boleh dan tidak boleh dilakukan.

Anonymous said...

fatwa dah keluar sbg muslim kena la ikut, perlu abaikan yg bising/noise .tak perlu lebih2 cakap atau sibuk2 cakap.

Anonymous said...

hey, indons, we oredi fatwaed the
yoga long ago lah !!