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KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 19 ― Muslims nationwide must beware the “dangers” of Christmas next week as it is allegedly a ploy by the Christian community to attract Muslims into accepting Jesus as the Son of God, the local chapter of international hardline Islamist group Hizbut Tahrir alleged today.
According to the group, Christmas celebrations try to condition Muslims into accepting “Western values”, allegedly through festivals of vice, free mingling, illicit sex, and excess that it said pervade the year-end celebrations.
“The momentum of Christmas is made into an important point to spread the Christians’ proselytisation mission. That is why Christians are serious in celebrating Christmas and the new year to attract other races, especially Muslims,” the group claimed in its weekly newsletter which is also distributed at local mosques during Friday prayers.
It alleged that communal Christmas celebrations, either held in homes but open to all or in public, were a way to get non-Christians to believe in Jesus as the saviour, or at least coax them to join the Christians in celebrating their faith towards Jesus.
Hizbut Tahrir also claimed that Christians are using the celebrations to cement their existence and domination in Muslim countries, especially when a country promotes religious tolerance and allows themselves the freedom to publicly celebrate Christmas.
“Any Muslim who refuse to offer a greeting of merry Christmas or celebrate it will be seen as intolerant, and maybe extreme,” it claimed.
“Based on this, some Muslims without shame and guilt, and even proudly and happily, celebrate Christmas just because they don’t want to be seen as intolerant among Christians. Whether they realise it or not, they have sold out their faith!”
Christmas is also seen as a ploy to plant the seeds of “religious pluralism” into the minds of Muslims so Christianity can be considered as a religion equal to Islam, the group said as it warned Muslims of idolatry.
In comparison, Hizbut Tahrir said an Islamic caliphate ― which it aims for ― would never allow Christians to publicly celebrate Christmas as it will be limited only to their homes, community and churches.
“It can never be highlighted in public spaces, and not allowed even in advertisements through electronic and print media that can be publicly accessed. This is because unbelief and any of such activities cannot be advertised and left to its own devices in an Islamic society,” it claimed.
The National Fatwa Council has decreed on 2005 that Muslims are prohibited from attending Christmas celebrations if there are “Christian symbols” on display, such as Christmas trees, Santa Claus-like red attires and Christmas carols.
Two years later in 2007, the same council decreed that Muslims cannot greet non-Muslims during their festivities if the greetings involve issues of faith or recognise that other religions are of equal position with Islam.