No love in KL and Selangor

By Adib Zalkapli, The Malaysian Insider

KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 11 — Both the city Islamic Department (Jawi) and Selangor Islamic Department (Jais) have banned Muslims from celebrating Valentine’s Day, calling it a Christian tradition in a Friday sermon delivered in mosques today.

Valentine’s Day falls on February 14, next Monday, and generates revenue for restaurants, hotels and retail businesses.

“It is celebrated in many ways, starting with greeting cards, flowers and dance parties. In fact some celebrate it with a date which would eventually lead to illicit sex,” said the sermon prepared by the Selangor’s Islamic authority.

“Clearly the celebration is not part of Islamic teaching, it violates the syariah and contradicts the universal code of ethics,” it added.

Citing the Catholic Encyclopaedia, the sermon claimed Valentine’s Day is celebrated to honour a Christian priest who was imprisoned in Rome for his belief and remembered for his love letters addressed to the daughter of prison official.

“Clearly the celebration of Valentine’s Day is related to the incident, so as a Muslim who believes in Allah and accepts Muhammad as the messenger, is it appropriate for us to celebrate Valentine’s Day?” said the sermon.

Jais pointed out that there were 257,411 births out of wedlock between 2000 and 2008, and blamed Valentine’s Day celebration as one of the causes.

“Therefore every Muslim, especially teenagers, must abandon the tradition of celebrating Valentine’s Day, which was meant to corrupt the Musim community,” it said.

“Remember that the Jews and Christians would continue to deceive Muslims. They will do everything undermine the Muslims’ belief and personality,” said the sermon.

Jais also called on the media and social networking sites not to promote Valentine’s Day.