Indonesia is being rocked with controversy over the emergence of a new Muslim group whose leader, Ahmad Mushaddeq, claims to have been told by God he is the new prophet whose task is to replace the Prophet Muhammad and bring new ideas into the Muslim religion. Angry mobs have assaulted his followers driving many out of their homes and forced them to live in refugee camps. Last weekend a mob a wrecked the home of Mushaddeq who is now in custody on grounds he violated Indonesian law by spreading a “misguided religion.’ In 2005, Muhammad Yusman Roy was sent to jail for his misguided religious idea that people should pray in the Indonesian language rather than Arabic. Two years ago Lia Aminuddin was sent to jail for two years for claiming she was a prophet who spoke with God. As Muhammad Nafik writes in the Jakarta Post: “Religious leaders should be reminded that it is God’s– not their-perogative to judge the rightness of a man’s life.” The Indonesian Attorney General is considering whether or not to jail Mushaddeq under laws making it illegal to spread “misguided religion.”
It is interesting that new prophets are emerging in a world in which the Muslim religion is experiencing many traumatic conflicts. Most probably, such world conditions invariably spawn religious leaders who wish to bring some type of comfort to people. Mr. Naflik is correct, we humans should step aside and allow God to make determinations as to the validity of any religious leader.