COMMENT | It seems to me that the non-Muslims by which I mean Buddhists, Hindus, Sikhs and Christians, are barking up the wrong tree.
It is not khat that threatens your respective faiths but the absence of systematic instruction of your children in each of your faiths. The government will not do it.
So it is the responsibility of parents, spiritual leaders and leaders of your respective communities to undertake that responsibility.
At one time, mission schools instructed Christians in their faith. But no more.
Muslim evangelisation or dakwah will continue regardless. That is fundamental to their religion. You must not preach to them. But they can and will preach to you and your children.
Consider Maszlee Malik’s statement about dakwah in East Malaysia. And consider the issues relating to the unilateral conversion of minor children. And consider the abduction of Pastor Raymond Koh. Consider the rhetoric of PAS.
There are profound truths in all faiths. Throughout the world, millions study Buddhist teachings and philosophy, Hindu writings and philosophy.
There are a confluence and congruence of all the traditions of all faiths at some point. Genuine spirituality rises beyond the politics of religion.
The objective of teaching your faith should be obvious. It is the faith that configured you. It is the faith of your family and your community. It is intertwined with your culture. It is your belief system.
It is possible to combine and have crossover elements of your faith with elements of other faiths. Christians study the Bhagavad Gita, yoga and mindfulness.
So accept that dakwah will continue. Accept that preachers like Zakir Naik will preach their divisive teachings to Malays.
But it is up to you how you teach your children their faith. It is up to you how you build the edifices of your religion. It is up to you how you profile the goodness and the magnificence of your religious beliefs and teachings.
The Buddhists and Christians are known for their compassion and charitable works.
So spend less time worrying about khat. Use your energy to shore up the faith of your people especially the young.
And reflect the noble virtues of your faith in your behaviour. And in your good works.
DAVID DASS is a lawyer.
The views expressed here are those of the author/contributor and do not necessarily represent the views of Malaysiakini.