Malaysian psychologists and religious leaders want ‘Islamic psychospiritual therapy’ to be recognized as a modern medicine to treat ‘LGBTI issue’
‘Islamic psychospiritual therapy must prove itself capable to help in rehabilitating emotional disturbance, anxiety and depression,’ said Datuk Prof Dr Azizan Baruddin, director-general of the Institute of Islamic Understanding Malaysia (Ikim).
‘It must also prove itself capable in helping solve psychosis disorder, personality disorder, and problems involving the LGBT.’
Malaysia is a majority Muslim country where it is illegal to be gay or trans.
A news report by The Malay Online said he was speaking at a conference which brought together experts from science and spirtual fields to develop the therapy as a valid mental health treatment.
The core of the treatment is ‘ruqyah’ which on the belief ailments are the result of supernatural beings. The recital of Islamic scriptures would heal the body.
If it doesn’t work, it was Allah’s will
Faith healer president of the Malaysian Islamic Healing Practitioners Alliance, or Gapimma, Mohd Fauzi Mustaffa said about 85% of their patients went to healers to help get rid ‘spiritual hauntings’.
Fauzi also claimed the therapy could cure a long list of mental and physical illnesses including, cancer.
If the ruqyah was not successful in treating someone, Fauzi said it was because it was not God’s intention.
‘If the ruqyah heals, then it heals. But if it doesn’t work, it is because Allah has not permitted it yet,’ said Fauzi.
‘There are many dimensions of healing … Even if one is not healed, at least he will be relieved. Relief is also healing.’
Some conference speakers also questioned the validity of the treatment arguing more empirical evidence was needed.
The push for the recognition of ‘Islamic psychospiritual therapy’ as an official medical treatment comes as several Malaysian universities explore the issue more closely.
In 2006 the Health Ministry began offering traditional and complementary medicine in public hospital.