Council defers fatwa on yoga
Sat, Nov 08, 2008
The Star

PUTRAJAYA, MALAYSIA: The National Fatwa Council has deferred announcing its ruling on yoga scheduled for yesterday, as the council chairman is abroad.

The Islamic Development department (Jakim) director-general Datuk Wan Mohamad Sheikh Abdul Aziz said that the announcement would have to be made later as chairman Prof Datuk Dr Abdul Shukor Husin was in Jordan on an official trip.

"We will check when he (Shukor) is able to make the announcement once he returns home from his trip," Wan Mohamad told The Star yesterday.

It was earlier reported that the National Fatwa Council would come out with a ruling on yoga yesterday.

The ruling is related to the faith of Muslims who practise yoga.

Recently, a lecturer Prof Zakaria Stapa of Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia's Islamic Studies Centre advised Muslims who had taken up yoga to stop practising it for fear that they could deviate from the teachings of Islam.

Yoga, a health-related exercise, has been practised since 3,000BC and is said to help slow down aging, reduce risk of diabetes, asthma and heart-related diseases.

Wan Mohamad, however, declined to reveal if the fatwa would prevent Muslims from practising yoga, saying any announcement of Islamic ruling would have to come from the council.

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