Sheikh Yahya Safi, the head imam at Lakemba mosque in Sydney’s western suburbs, has declared a fatwa on Christmas and telling his followers to not associate with anything to do with Christmas in a country that is predominately Christian.
The fatwa claimed that the “disbelievers are trying to draw Muslims away from the straight path”.
The fatwa continued that Christmas belongs to “falsehoods that a Muslim should avoid … and therefore, a Muslim is neither allowed to celebrate the Christmas Day nor is he allowed to congratulate them”.
The posting of the fatwa has shocked many Muslim leaders. The Grand Mufti of Australia, Ibrahim Abu Mohammad, said the foundations of Islam were peace, co-operation, respect and holding others in esteem, The Sydney Morning Herald reported.
“Anyone who says otherwise is speaking irresponsibly,” he said.
“There is difference between showing respect for someone’s belief and sharing those beliefs,” Dr Ibrahim said.
“We are required to have good relations with all people, and to congratulate them on their joyous events is very important,” he continued.