Malay Atheists Fear for Their Lives


Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Shahidan Kassim recently called for atheists to be “hunted down vehemently” amid an investigation into the Malaysian chapter of Atheist Republic.

Citing a Channel NewsAsia (CNA) interview with a man who wanted to be known only as Halim, FMT reported that Malay atheists fear for their lives following the call from Shahidan.

“I am worried. I have already accepted that something might happen to me, that I might be killed.

“I see how extreme people have become, how my Facebook friends (could) turn into real-life threats for me with their comments that it is halal (permitted) to kill atheists, apostates…how eager they are to kill to gain merits in heaven,” Halim was quoted as saying.

According to The Malay Mail, Shahidan said the Federal Constitution “does not mention atheists” and “it goes against the Constitution and human rights”.

He also called on the public to help identify atheist groups.

“They actually don’t want to be atheists but it happens because of the lack of religious education. They are misled with a new school of thought,” Shahidan said.

He urged religious groups especially the muftis to help educate Muslims who have become atheists and return them to their faith.

A photo of a gathering of the Kuala Lumpur chapter of Atheist Republic that went viral sparked an uproar among some Muslims and led to threats of death and violence against the group on social media.

According to FMT, the fears of Halim and other Malay atheists were compounded by remarks from Negeri Sembilan mufti Mohd Yusof Ahmad, who said in a report by Berita Harian that the penalty for apostasy under Islam is death “if they are stubborn and refuse to repent”.

Although Yusof acknowledged that Malaysia’s shariah courts cannot carry out such punishments, he called on religious authorities to increase their efforts to curb the spread of atheism.

But Halim said he had no interest in spreading his atheist ideologies.

“A person’s belief is a private matter. We don’t believe in proselytising what we believe in,” Halim told CNA.

Deputy Home Minister Nur Jazlan Mohamed told CNA that he would not encourage a campaign against atheists, adding that the matter of apostasy needs to be handled “with care”.

Another atheist who asked to be known as Chaidir said he still fasts during Ramadan when he is with his parents, who are unaware that he is an atheist.

He added that he was concerned about his friends who come from a lower socioeconomic background, saying this makes them more vulnerable.

“At least for me, I come from the middle class and have more access to help,” he said in the CNA report.

The Federal Territories Islamic Religious Department (Jawi) director Abdul Aziz Jusoh said in a statement that the department was constantly monitoring not only atheists but all groups with the tendency to violate the laws, and hoped that the public could help curb the spread of such activities by filing complaints.

He added that the spread of atheist ideology in the Federal Territories could be subject to action under the Syariah Criminal Offences (Federal Territories) Act 1997.

“Basically, any teachings of either atheist in nature or which are contradictory to the teachings of Ahlus Sunnah Wal Jamaah (the followers of the four accepted schools of Sunni Islam) are rejected. In fact, atheism also goes against the Rukun Negara, namely ‘Believe in God’,” Abdul Aziz said.

Prior to this, Deputy Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Dr Asyraf Wajdi Dusuki said the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission, as well as Jawi, would investigate Muslims who took part in the Atheist Republic gathering.

Commenting on the deputy minister’s statement, think tank Islamic Renaissance Front chairman Dr Ahmad Farouk Musa was quick to point out that when it came to faith, it was something between men and God.

He suggested several reasons why Muslims leave the faith, including the dogmatic teachings of Islam, the seemingly repressive way in which the religion is being administered and the rigid way religious teachers approach the subject.

“If the problem is in the way Islam is represented by the current administration, then we have to reflect on this. There should be self-introspection and self-reflection by the government and the Islamic religious authorities,” he told FMT.

“I do not see any justification if a state wants to interfere in an individual’s faith,” Farouk said.

The activist also reminded the government and the Islamic authorities that there was no coercion in Islam.

The MP for Parit Buntar Dr Mujahid Yusof suggested engaging those who were involved in atheism in a dialogue session.

“From whichever faith you are, atheism is unacceptable. It cannot be considered as a belief if they do not have any faith. The authorities should intervene if such beliefs encroach into the lives of Muslims and start to propagate”, Mujahid said.

Interestingly, a study has revealed that atheists are more likely to be viewed as immoral and capable of evil deeds than religious people, even by other atheists.

The findings reported recently in the journal Nature Human Behaviour suggest that atheists are more easily suspected of vile deeds than those who have religious beliefs, in spite of an increasingly secular world.

Even in places that are quite overtly secular, people still seem to intuitively hold on to the belief that religion is a moral safeguard and that people will do bad things unless they fear punishment from all-seeing gods.

According to the study, atheists are broadly perceived as potentially morally depraved and dangerous.

Jon Worth/Flickr (Creative Commons)

Related report: Aug 8, Malaysia Probes Atheist Group After Uproar over Muslim Apostates


  1. I don’t know whether it’s just me or if everybody else encountering problems with your blog. It looks like some of the written text in your posts are running off the screen. Can somebody else please comment and let me know if this is happening to them too? This may be a problem with my web browser because I’ve had this happen previously. Thanks|

  2. Hi there! This is kind of off topic but I need some guidance from an established blog. Is it tough to set up your own blog? I’m not very techincal but I can figure things out pretty fast. I’m thinking about creating my own but I’m not sure where to start. Do you have any ideas or suggestions? Appreciate it|

  3. Heya! I understand this is kind of off-topic however I needed to ask. Does running a well-established blog like yours require a large amount of work? I am completely new to operating a blog but I do write in my diary on a daily basis. I’d like to start a blog so I can easily share my experience and thoughts online. Please let me know if you have any kind of recommendations or tips for new aspiring bloggers. Appreciate it!|

  4. We absolutely love your blog and find almost all of your post’s to be what precisely I’m looking for. Do you offer guest writers to write content for you? I wouldn’t mind composing a post or elaborating on a lot of the subjects you write related to here. Again, awesome site!|

  5. Magnificent beat ! I wish to apprentice while you amend your website, how can i subscribe for a blog website? The account aided me a acceptable deal. I had been tiny bit acquainted of this your broadcast provided bright clear concept|

  6. Hi! I know this is kind of off topic but I was wondering if you knew where I could get a captcha plugin for my comment form? I’m using the same blog platform as yours and I’m having difficulty finding one? Thanks a lot!|

  7. Very nice post. I just stumbled upon your blog and wished to say that I have really enjoyed surfing around your blog posts. After all I’ll be subscribing to your feed and I hope you write again soon!|

  8. Thank you a lot for sharing this with all folks you actually understand what you’re talking about! Bookmarked. Kindly additionally visit my web site =). We can have a link change arrangement among us|

  9. I’ve been surfing online greater than three hours today, yet I never discovered any fascinating article like yours. It is beautiful worth enough for me. In my view, if all site owners and bloggers made excellent content as you probably did, the internet can be much more useful than ever before.|

  10. Pretty section of content. I just stumbled upon your weblog and in accession capital to assert that I get in fact enjoyed account your blog posts. Anyway I will be subscribing to your feeds and even I achievement you access consistently rapidly.|

  11. Greetings! I know this is somewhat off topic but I was wondering if you knew where I could locate a captcha plugin for my comment form? I’m using the same blog platform as yours and I’m having trouble finding one? Thanks a lot!|

  12. Heya just wanted to give you a brief heads up and let you know a few of the images aren’t loading correctly. I’m not sure why but I think its a linking issue. I’ve tried it in two different internet browsers and both show the same outcome.|

  13. Its like you learn my thoughts! You appear to know so much approximately this, such as you wrote the e-book in it or something. I believe that you could do with some p.c. to drive the message house a little bit, but other than that, that is fantastic blog. An excellent read. I will certainly be back.|

  14. Hi, i read your blog from time to time and i own a similar one and i was just curious if you get a lot of spam responses? If so how do you stop it, any plugin or anything you can suggest? I get so much lately it’s driving me crazy so any support is very much appreciated.|

  15. You can certainly see your expertise in the article you write. The world hopes for even more passionate writers like you who are not afraid to mention how they believe. All the time go after your heart.|

  16. Hey! Someone in my Myspace group shared this website with us so I came to look it over. I’m definitely enjoying the information. I’m bookmarking and will be tweeting this to my followers! Excellent blog and terrific design and style.|

  17. Hey, I think your website might be having browser compatibility issues. When I look at your blog in Safari, it looks fine but when opening in Internet Explorer, it has some overlapping. I just wanted to give you a quick heads up! Other then that, fantastic blog!|

  18. Greetings! Quick question that’s totally off topic. Do you know how to make your site mobile friendly? My blog looks weird when viewing from my apple iphone. I’m trying to find a template or plugin that might be able to correct this issue. If you have any recommendations, please share. Thanks!|

  19. Hey, I think your site might be having browser compatibility issues. When I look at your website in Opera, it looks fine but when opening in Internet Explorer, it has some overlapping. I just wanted to give you a quick heads up! Other then that, great blog!|

  20. Woah! I’m really digging the template/theme of this website. It’s simple, yet effective. A lot of times it’s very difficult to get that “perfect balance” between user friendliness and visual appeal. I must say you have done a great job with this. Also, the blog loads extremely fast for me on Safari. Excellent Blog!|

  21. We’re a group of volunteers and starting a new scheme in our community. Your web site provided us with valuable information to work on. You’ve done a formidable job and our whole community will be thankful to you.|

  22. Hey there! I just wanted to ask if you ever have any issues with hackers? My last blog (wordpress) was hacked and I ended up losing a few months of hard work due to no back up. Do you have any solutions to protect against hackers?|

  23. Hello just wanted to give you a quick heads up. The text in your post seem to be running off the screen in Opera. I’m not sure if this is a format issue or something to do with browser compatibility but I figured I’d post to let you know. The style and design look great though! Hope you get the problem solved soon. Many thanks|

  24. Oh my goodness! Amazing article dude! Thanks, However I am experiencing difficulties with your RSS. I don’t know why I can’t join it. Is there anyone else getting the same RSS problems? Anyone who knows the solution will you kindly respond? Thanx!!|

  25. I am really impressed with your writing talents as neatly as with the structure for your blog. Is that this a paid topic or did you modify it your self? Either way keep up the nice high quality writing, it’s rare to look a nice blog like this one today..|

  26. Hi there, just turned into alert to your blog thru Google, and found that it is really informative. I’m going to watch out for brussels. I will be grateful should you continue this in future. A lot of folks will probably be benefited from your writing. Cheers!|

  27. Hi! Quick question that’s entirely off topic. Do you know how to make your site mobile friendly? My site looks weird when browsing from my iphone. I’m trying to find a template or plugin that might be able to fix this problem. If you have any recommendations, please share. Cheers!|

  28. An outstanding share! I have just forwarded this onto a colleague who has been conducting a little research on this. And he in fact ordered me dinner simply because I stumbled upon it for him… lol. So allow me to reword this…. Thanks for the meal!! But yeah, thanx for spending time to talk about this topic here on your internet site.|

  29. I like the helpful information you provide for your articles. I’ll bookmark your blog and take a look at again right here frequently. I am somewhat certain I will learn many new stuff proper here! Best of luck for the following!|

  30. Somebody necessarily lend a hand to make severely articles I might state. This is the first time I frequented your web page and to this point? I surprised with the analysis you made to make this actual post extraordinary. Fantastic process!|

  31. Greetings from Idaho! I’m bored at work so I decided to check out your website on my iphone during lunch break. I enjoy the info you provide here and can’t wait to take a look when I get home. I’m shocked at how quick your blog loaded on my cell phone .. I’m not even using WIFI, just 3G .. Anyways, great site!|

  32. It is appropriate time to make a few plans for the future and it’s time to be happy. I have read this publish and if I may just I desire to suggest you some fascinating things or tips. Maybe you could write subsequent articles relating to this article. I desire to learn more issues approximately it!|

  33. Oh my goodness! Impressive article dude! Many thanks, However I am experiencing problems with your RSS. I don’t know why I am unable to join it. Is there anyone else having similar RSS issues? Anyone that knows the solution will you kindly respond? Thanx!!|

  34. Simply desire to say your article is as surprising. The clearness in your submit is just great and i can assume you are knowledgeable on this subject. Well with your permission let me to seize your feed to keep updated with drawing close post. Thank you a million and please carry on the enjoyable work.|

  35. Hey! I know this is kinda off topic nevertheless I’d figured I’d ask. Would you be interested in trading links or maybe guest authoring a blog article or vice-versa? My website discusses a lot of the same subjects as yours and I feel we could greatly benefit from each other. If you’re interested feel free to shoot me an email. I look forward to hearing from you! Superb blog by the way!|

  36. Howdy just wanted to give you a quick heads up. The words in your article seem to be running off the screen in Internet explorer. I’m not sure if this is a formatting issue or something to do with internet browser compatibility but I figured I’d post to let you know. The design and style look great though! Hope you get the problem fixed soon. Thanks|

  37. Good day I am so happy I found your blog page, I really found you by mistake, while I was looking on Google for something else, Nonetheless I am here now and would just like to say many thanks for a marvelous post and a all round enjoyable blog (I also love the theme/design), I don’t have time to browse it all at the minute but I have bookmarked it and also added in your RSS feeds, so when I have time I will be back to read much more, Please do keep up the great jo.|

  38. Hi are using WordPress for your site platform? I’m new to the blog world but I’m trying to get started and create my own. Do you require any html coding knowledge to make your own blog? Any help would be really appreciated!|

  39. Have you ever thought about writing an e-book or guest authoring on other sites? I have a blog centered on the same topics you discuss and would love to have you share some stories/information. I know my visitors would value your work. If you are even remotely interested, feel free to send me an e-mail.|

  40. I do trust all the ideas you have offered to your post. They are very convincing and will certainly work. Still, the posts are very brief for beginners. May just you please extend them a little from subsequent time? Thanks for the post.|

  41. First of all I would like to say excellent blog! I had a quick question that I’d like to ask if you don’t mind. I was curious to find out how you center yourself and clear your mind prior to writing. I have had a difficult time clearing my mind in getting my ideas out. I do take pleasure in writing but it just seems like the first 10 to 15 minutes are generally wasted simply just trying to figure out how to begin. Any recommendations or tips? Kudos!|

  42. Hello would you mind stating which blog platform you’re
    using? I’m going to start my own blog soon but I’m having a hard time making a decision between BlogEngine/Wordpress/B2evolution and Drupal.
    The reason I ask is because your design and style seems different then most
    blogs and I’m looking for something unique.
    P.S Apologies for getting off-topic but I had to ask!

  43. What’s Going down i’m new to this, I stumbled upon this I have discovered It positively helpful and it
    has helped me out loads. I am hoping to contribute & help other customers like its aided me.
    Great job.

  44. I’m extremely pleased to uncover this great site.
    I wanted to thank you for your time just for this wonderful read!!
    I definitely enjoyed every part of it and I have you saved to fav to see new stuff in your blog.

  45. I’m not sure why but this weblog is loading extremely slow for me.
    Is anyone else having this problem or is it a problem
    on my end? I’ll check back later on and see if
    the problem still exists.

  46. Heya just wanted to give you a quick heads up and let you know a few of the pictures aren’t loading properly. I’m not sure why but I think its a linking issue. I’ve tried it in two different browsers and both show the same outcome.

  47. Thanks for every other informative blog. The place else may I get that kind of info written in such
    an ideal way? I’ve a undertaking that I’m simply now operating on, and I’ve been at the look out for
    such info.

  48. Great goods from you, man. I’ve understand your stuff previous to and you are just extremely great. I really like what you’ve acquired here, really like what you are saying and the way in which you say it. You make it entertaining and you still take care of to keep it sensible. I cant wait to read much more from you. This is really a great website.

  49. Greetings from Colorado! I’m bored to tears at work so I
    decided to check out your blog on my iphone during lunch break.
    I love the information you present here and can’t wait to take a look when I get home.
    I’m amazed at how fast your blog loaded on my phone ..
    I’m not even using WIFI, just 3G .. Anyways,
    good blog!

  50. My brother recommended I would possibly like
    this web site. He was once totally right. This post truly made my day.

    You cann’t believe just how much time I had spent for this info!


  51. I was speaking with a good friend of my own on this article and also regarding wealth generation forex as well. I do believe you made a lot of great points here, we are excited to continue reading stuff from you.

  52. Hello my friend! I wish to say that this post is awesome, nice written and come with almost all
    significant infos. I would like to look extra
    posts like this .

  53. You have some really great posts and I believe I would be a good asset. I’d absolutely love to write some articles for your blog in exchange for a link back to mine. Please send me an email if interested. Regards!

  54. Appreciating the dedication you put into the site and thorough facts you offer. It is nice to find a site from time to time which is just not the same outdated re-written stuff. Amazing read! I’ve bookmarked your website and I am including the RSS feeds to my instagram likes app web page.

  55. I’m really intrigued to discover just what site platform you have been working with? I am having a few small security issues with my most recent blog regarding best forex robot and I would like to find something a lot more safe. Are there any strategies?

  56. My friends and I unquestionably love your blog and find the majority of your articles to be exactly I’m looking for. Would you offer other people to write articles for you? I would not mind writing a post relating to environmental jobs network or perhaps on some of the topics you’re posting about here. Awesome blog!


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here