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Deviation activities detected in Brunei

Hj Metussin Hj Jumat.

By Azlan Othman

There were about ten deviation activities being spread out in the country by missionaries since the activity was first detected 30 years ago.

This was revealed recently by Awg Hj Metussin Hj Jumat, an officer from the Religious Enforcement Unit of the Ministry of Religious Affairs at a seminar entitled "Deviationist".

The five-day civic course was attended by a group of undergraduates. According to MABIMS (The Islamic Religious Council of Brunei, Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore), deviation activity means any teachings spread by Muslims or non-Muslims and claimed to be Islamic teachings which is against the Holy Quran and Sunnah Ahli Sunnah Wal Jema'ah .

The first activity was detected in 1961 - the spreading of 'Bahai" teachings targeted at Muslims living in Kg. Benutan and Supon Besar in the remote area of the Tutong district.

The other activity detected in 1973 was the spreading of belief that is against Islam by Sergeant Osman, an army personnel loaned from Malaysia. In 1976, the country was shocked by the transmission of "Silat Lintau", a form of a martial art originated from Malaysia.

The obvious deviation activity in the country was the spreading of Darul-Arqam that started in 1980. The activity was influential and resulted in the formation of "Jema'ah Al-Arqam" in the country years later. However, it was banned in 1991 as the activity contradicted the Islamic teachings.

In 1986, the country was again shocked by a controversial speaker from Surabaya who spread teachings which is against "Ahli Sunnah Wal Jemaah". He was later expelled from the country.

In 1989, a student who studied in the United Kingdom brought into the country the "Qadiani Thinking", which was later found contradicted with the true teachings of Islam. In the same year, a missionary from Gombak, Malaysia brought in the "Abdul Razak teachings" to the country. He was expelled in 1994.

The latest deviation activity detected involving the spreading of SIB early this year.

According to the Kadhi court and Islamic Religious Council Act, those who teach in front of the public any event or activity against the Islamic teachings would face a fine of $2000 or three months imprisonment.

In an effort to curb undesirable public lectures, the religious missionary or "Pendakwah Bebas" must first get approval from the Islamic Religious Council.

The speaker also defined deviationist as a person who claims himself/herself to be a prophet, Imam Mahdi, or to have a key to "Syurga" or heaven.

He also outlined the reasons for the development of deviation activities. Among these reasons are the ability to manipulate the deviation teachings logically and the greedy attitude to gain something high.

©Copyright 2003, BruneiDirect (Brunei)

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