Earthquakes and Porn Videos

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Recently, the local Muslim Singaporeans were treated to a news regarding a group of people following a so-called ustaz (religious teacher). Apparently, the so-called ustaz had told his followers that Singapore faced an impending cataclysmic earthquake measuring more than 7.0 on the Richter scale, which were to occur on a certain date – 29th or 31st January 2010.

Fearing the worst, the group of followers, said to be around 30 families, packed their bags and traveled to Malaysia to escape the quake. Of course, the quake didn’t happen, as life went on for people on the lil’ red dot.

Then news spread the follower’s trip and the reason behind it, and people chastised them for being so gullible, and also for the so-called ustaz to be reprimanded.

Apparently from sources that I have access to (correct me if I’m wrong here), this ustaz apparently received the “news” of an “impending quake” from the above. In this day and age, one can only be extra careful to say the least, especially with regards to rumors coming from possibly shady people, and of course Fox News. Here are some points I’d like to raise:

1. Obviously, news like these should be inspected and  sieved carefully; one can only assume the character of the teacher – pious or otherwise. But in this day and age, as much as I like see myself as a religious believer, I am usually more than skeptical about those who claim to profess ilham (inspiration) from Allah. While I must note that ilham is still a rare possibility, the followers must practice their due diligence and not follow it blindly.

2. One of the tell-tale signs of a suspicious teacher may be his request for exclusivity and secrecy of his teachings. This is apparent in many cults, be it Western-based or otherwise, and it doesn’t take common sense to figure that good science – or knowledge for that matter – is one which is able to stand the criticism, openness, and debate. That is why in the Arabic countries for instance, there is this culture of their religious leaders attending the lectures of their peers. Sadly one which is lacking here, I say.

3. At least, verify any questionable issues raised by your religious teacher (a warning of an impending quake is definitely one of them) with established religious lecturers, not some taxi driver with no formal religious education training, and especially not the kakis you meet over your teh/kopi session.

4. By any means, please do not just forward any news/SMS/email you receive without checking its sources. Even if the source is verified, do not forward it if it brings no one any good. This, as well as common sense,  is one of the good practices when dealing with new technology. Among these good practices is also not to use the video recording technology like a 6-year-old would; recording everything in his path. Especially not coitus.

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5. Do not have sex before marriage. Do not have premarital sex and record it. Even if you are married, do not record sex. Men, regardless of their charm and seeming innocence, shouldn’t be trusted with really sensitive materials, and aren’t grown up until they reach circa 60 years of age. So if you do receive potentially damaging items of other people, do not forward it to anyone else. See #4.

6. If you spread damaging materials of other people, and they kill themselves because of it, are you partially responsible for it then? Please do what is right. Let the mind triumph over temptation, for once.

A stranger called me out of the blue pleading for my help. He wants to know if there is any way in which I could assist to purge copies of a file that has been circulating on the Internet. The file in question is actually a 3-minute pornographic video clip of a Singaporean Malay girl.

Apparently, the video is that of his 22-year old niece. The 3GP file allegedly shows her in full nudity while engaging in various sexual activities with her ex-boyfriend. Spiteful after being told to end the relationship, the revengeful lover purportedly gave the file away to several of his friends.

The video has since been making its round on local pornographic forums and file sharing networks. According to the uncle, the file is so widespread that it ended up in the hands of the family’s relatives who often teased her during the last Hari Raya visits.

Drowned in humiliation, she committed suicide about a month ago by leaping from her bedroom window. According to the uncle, her body was so mangled that they had to keep the “kain kafan” (burial shroud) sealed throughout the eerily somber funeral ceremony.

The 40-day anniversary of her death is approaching soon and her family members and close friends are thinking of holding a gathering at her parents’ flat to offer prayers for her soul. The Malays call it a “kenduri” and it is largely believed to offer some reprise for the dead. Besides, it is an opportunity for the family to gain closure over the tragedy.

But before the prayers, the family is appealing to all those who are having the file to delete and cease it from distribution. With a heavy heart, I had to explain to the uncle that it is not possible to simply “purge” a file on a sex forum without the intervention of the site’s owners.

I pray that her soul will finally be at peace.

(Source)

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Further reading:

IslamOnline

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