Ooi Zhi Yi

A proud Malaysian, aiming to contribute my time & energy for the development of my community & country through the best ways that I could give.

 

In the whole world, all religion including among the largest such as Hindu, Muslim, Christian, Buddhist and Jewish has never taught any of its people to kill nor to hurt. No matter how big a religion is or it may be superstitious, it is a set of beliefs and culture that humans look into as a principle or guidance towards life.

I am sure no one can find the origins of any religion is to attack and kill one another. We go to the temples, mosques, churches and other religious places to pray for humanity and peace. A very good case study is the recent Nepal earthquake where numerous people died and cities destroyed. Religious leaders, activists and people from all walks of life joined their hands together to pray for the dead and for the safety of the survivors. No one would have cursed or condemned these poor people in Nepal.

On the other hand, regrettably, we see extremists from the same religions that the world are practicing. These extremists manifest in all religions, the least as we have seen in the news, the major religions of the world.

We have seen the famous Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), Christian terrorism of the Ku Klux Klan, Saffron terror of the Hindu nationalism and many more.

The most recent religious extremism has hit Southeast Asia when we heard of the Rohingya people trying to fled to Thailand, Indonesia and Malaysia. It was in the news that some of the Buddhist leaders in Myanmar had instigated hatred and violence towards the Rohingya Muslims.

However, the discrimination of the Rohingya people by the Myanmar government and the Buddhist extremists is not something new.

It was widely known from the 969 Movement of Myanmar which is led by a Burmese Buddhist monk, Ashin Wirathu. Wirathu led a rally of monks in Mandalay in 2012 to promote the Myanmar President’s plan to send the Rohingya to a third country. It was also well-known by the world that Wirathu has openly referred Muslims as the “enemy” and incites hatred of the people in the Rohingyas.

They may be various causes and factors to such hatred of each other in the country. But we must not let religious extremism to exists. As mentioned earlier, religion is where people look for guidance of principles in life. If these extremists religious leaders spreads such thoughts into the people, there will even be more killings of one another. It is even worse when religion is mixed with politics, which people may misuse religion to gain power.

Many of us Chinese in Malaysia are Buddhists, and I am sure that Malaysian Buddhists are all moderates as we have lived and prayed peacefully all this while. As part of one of the largest religion in the world, we must send a clear message to the extreme Buddhists no matter where they are, to stop inciting hatreds and more importantly, do not mix religion with politics.

I believe we would have such credibility to advise the world as we have lived together with Muslims, Hindus, Christians, Sikhs, and many other different religions.

Article was first published on www.ooizhiyi.com/blog/

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