Sultanen av Brunei har gjort det straffbart for muslimer å feire jul. Kristne må gjøre det bak husets fire vegger. Den som overtrår reglene risikerer fem års fengsel.
Sultanen innførte i fjor sharia, inkludert de fryktelige hudud-straffene, dvs amputasjoner og stening. Brunei har gratis utdannelse og helsevesen. Men høy levestandard er altså ingen hindring for innføring av totalitær religion, kan det se ut som.
The Sultan of Brunei has declared that anyone found illegally celebrating Christmas could face a five year jail sentence, according to reports.
The conservative Muslim country on the island of Borneo stated the punishment would apply to anyone found sending festive greetings – or wearing Santa hats.
Non-Muslims are allowed to celebrate Christmas – but they must do so only within their communities and first alert authorities.
At least 65 per cent of the 420,000-strong population of the oil-rich state are Muslims.
The Ministry of Religious Affairs said in a statement: «These enforcement measures are … intended to control the act of celebrating Christmas excessively and openly, which could damage the aqidah (beliefs) of the Muslim community.»
In a warning to Muslims earlier this month, a group of Imams warned that any celebration «not in any way related to Islam” could lead to «‘tasyabbuh’ (imitation) and unknowingly damage the ‘aqidah’ (faith) of Muslims».
“During Christmas celebrations, Muslims following that religion’s acts – such as using their religious symbols like cross, lighting candles, making Christmas trees and singing religious songs, sending Christmas greetings, using signs praising the religion, putting up decorations or creating sounds and doing anything that amounts to respecting their religion – are against Islamic faith,” the Imams said, according to the Borneo Bulletin.
“Some may think that it is a frivolous matter and should not be brought up as an issue. But as Muslims and as a Zikir Nation, we must keep it (following other religions’ celebrations) away as it could affect our Islamic faith.”
Imamene frykter at julefeiringen kan smitte over og svekke deres tro. Man må spørre om det da ikke er en svak tro.