Saturday, April 26, 2008

Mosques in China-Slideshow

You shouldnt miss these beautiful pics of various mosques designs in Cina. Be warned that the achitectural design take up the local Chinese culture and taste which might be alien to our eyes. Thats the beauty of it. Enjoy...

With many thanks to Frogdeck on flickr.

Thai ancient Muslim sites falling into poor condition

By: Khadija Chinese

AYUTTHAYA, Thailand: The Thai government has been called on by a Muslim cultural expert to pay more attention to historic sites of ancient Muslim communities in Ayutthaya that are falling into disrepair.

Ayutthaya, to the north of Bangkok, was the first capital of the Kingdom of Thailand from the early-14th century, until its destruction by Burmese invaders in 1767.

Director of Thon Buri Historical Information Center Mr Teeranand Chuangpinit was referring to Chao Kun Takia Cemetery and Chao Kun Ku Cham Cemetery, the final resting place of noble Muslims of the Ayutthaya era, including a nephew of the powerful Sheikh Ahmad Qomi, the first lineage of the Bunnag family and the country's first Chularatchamontri who lived in the reign of King Narai.

Traditional buildings on the premises of Chao Kun Takia Mosque, more than 300 years old, are in disrepair. People can modify the buildings at will. Old and new architectural styles become confused.

Mr Teeranand said sites with great historic importance deserve better care from the Fine Arts Department.

"Just a few kilometres from a designated World Heritage site, these two historic places have never received money or expertise from the state conservation agency," he said.

The Takia Mosque community is an early settlement of Muslim migrants who came from Persia during the reign of King Songtham of Ayutthaya. Some believe the Chao Kun Takia Cemetery was the burial ground of a respected Muslim Indian believed to have possessed supernatural power.

The Takia Mosque has become a popular destination for local and foreign Muslims. Buddhist Thais also visit the mosque to make a wish and, if the wish is granted, make merit such as releasing goats and chickens.

Chao Kun Ku Cham Cemetery is also in poor condition.

The burial ground of the fifth Chularatchamontri, the state counsellor on treasury and international trade, is set in an unadorned concrete house. "This looks much better compared to the past," said Mr Teeranand.

The burial ground was covered by a tin roof when he visited the area a decade ago.
Mr Teeranand said local history would soon disappear unless historians and the Fine Arts Department came to the rescue.

Member of Aliyinnuroy Mosque in Ayutthaya province Pradit Kanjan said local people wanted to preserve the sites but lacked expertise and money.


"Knowledge is better than wealth because it protects you while you have to guard wealth. it decreases if you keep on spending it but the more you make use of knowledge ,the more it increases . what you get through wealth disappears as soon as wealth disappears but what you achieve through knowledge will remain even after you."MORE ..

Selected from,

see researched materials and pics of the mosque interior here,
History of Islam in Thailand

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

The History of Datuk Panglima Bukit Gantang

The History of Perak occasionally mention the above name as a symbolic warrior and honorary title in fighting the colonial masters in the cause and pursuit of defending Islam as the religion of the Malays.

The initiative of the Perak state government in preserving this name through naming schools, streets and buildings further helps to maintain its historical heritage. However, civil society today does not really know the origin of this historical name in Perak.

Paduka Seri Sultan Syed Alang Alauddin or Nai Lang, the Raja Siam of Songkhala is the first holder to this title. He is also the Bendahara, next in line to the Raja of Ligor throne. Ban Nai Lang in Thailand today is named after him.

His grandfather, the Raja of Ligor was formerly the King of Ayhthia, Boromoraja Ekataat V, who moved his entire followers to Ligor upon the attacked of Ayuthia by the Burmese armies from 1767-1782. This, the history of Thailand fail to record.

In 1782, Boromoraja Ekataat the V shifted to the new Kota Meang Kuang palace, close to Jitra Kedah . He was murdered by invading Rama II forces in Kedah in the year 1821. Earlier, in the 1758 his son, Po Chan Koya Long return from Cambodia with his followers and as the Raja of ligor in waiting, assume the post of the Raja of Kuala Kangsar in Perak. His eldest son is non other than Nai Lang or Syed Alang Alauddin, Panglima Bukit Gantang.

During the attacked on Kedah by invading Rama II forces in 1821, Nai Lang was the Raja of Bukit Gantang. He tentatively blocked the invading thai armies with his armies of elephants and well armed men at Durian Burong.

They then set up their camp at Padang Sanai waiting for the 36000 Chinese armies sent by his father in law the Chinese Manchu Emperor Chia Ching. Part of the Chinese Manchu armies soon arrived and landed at Tak Bai. Flags and banners were soon hoisted to fight the invading Rama II forces.

They soon marched to a rice field near Na Thawi to meet up with Nai Lang representatives. The reception ceremony for the Chinese armies was conducted by Nai Lang at Padang Sanai, today in the district of Padang Terap.

The Chinese Manchu armies who were led by General Baba met with Nai Lang in order to pass on further strategic information from his father in law, the Manchu Emperor. In order to have good fighting man, together they agreed to plant padi as a source of food for the soldiers at a new location known today as Kampong Cheba or Ban Che Ba.

Po Chan @ Koya Long, Raja of Cambodia Champakasaree (Cempakasari)

Upon returning from Cambodia (formerly part of Siam), Po Chans father, Boromoraja Ekataat V, former King of Ayuthia appointed his son as the Raja of Kuala Kangsar and carries the title of Sultan Mud Zaffar Syah III. In Perak history such a name exist without knowing or showing his true identity. Even Boromaraja Ekataat identity is also hidden in thai history.

His real name is Syarif Abu Bakar, married to Tengku Marin (Suriyamarin) a princess of Langkat. He is also known Mahadammaiyaza (Arabic for king of different bloodline) while reigning in Burma before returning to Ayuthia after Burma was attacked by Alaungphaya forces in 1758. In Ayuthia he is known as Boromoraja Ekataat V reigning from 1758 untill 1767.

Some of Po Chan followers moved to Kelantan and Trengganu. Some even went to Penang and set up a mosque there known today as Koya’s Mosque. The bulk of it stays in Pe-du, meaning eldest brother in referring to Koya Long.

In Kuala Nerang, near Pedu there are many ancestors of Syed’s, originating from the village of Syed Pew and Syed Sofoun in Cambodia. Nerang is Siamese for remote or quiet. Other historic places that still exist today is Bendang Raja (raja’s padi field) in referring to Po Chan padi field within the said area.

In the malay manuscript, Undang-Undang Kedah, page 43 it is stated, “….dititah Bendahara suruh salin..”, actually refers to Po Chan as the Bendahara who is also the next Raja of Ligor in waiting.

The are 3 steps taken by the Chinese Emperors armies,

First, gather their armies in Chiengmai in order to attack Ayuthia.
Second, sailing and berthing in Tak Bai in Songkhla
Third, sailing through rivers in Burma and occupied Langkawi Island.

In Langkawi Island they ocuupied a highland known to them as “ma-chin-cheng” meaning, arriving till dawn due to their large numbers. A warrior prince by the name of Tunku Mohammad Chan, was nominated as their leader. He was given the title Mat Sirat.

Locally he is also known as Keramat Tok Tekai due to his religious Muslims characteristics. During the attacked by sea of Kuala Kedah by thai Rama II forces in the year 1821, the Raja of Langkat was drown at sea.

His body was returned to Kuala Kedah to be buried there and is now known as Makam Tok Pasai. Tok Pasai is the grandson of Narai @ Iskandar Mahkota Alam of Acheh. Apart from that, he is also the father in law of Boromoraja Ekataat V, Syarif Abu Bakar Syah. Tengku Marin or Suriyamarin is Tok Pasai’s daughter.

The Chinese Emperors armies from Langkawi led by Tunku Mohammad Chan attacked the invading thai Rama II armies by landing at four places in Kedah

1. at Teluk Bagan, now known as Tanah Raja Telok bagan.
2. at Kuala Kangkong led by Tok Kai.
3. at Kuala Sala and camping at Kota Sarang Semut, once the palace of Sayyidina Ali wa Maulana Jamalul Alam Badrul Munir, grandson of Raja Merong Mahawangsa.
4. at Kuala Sedaka marching by the thousand to camp at Padang Lumat.

Tunku Mohammad Chan is also the son in law of the Chinese Mancu Emperor since he is married to the younger sister of the older sister who is married to Nai Lang @ Syed Alang Alauddin. Meanwhile, Sultan Muhammad I of Kelantan is Tunku Mohammad Chan’s eldest son while Long Jaafar the Raja of Larut is Nai Langs eldest son. Both of them are cousins and also grandsons of the Chinese Manchu Emperor, Chia-Ching.

When the war is almost over, Nai Lang soon discover that his grandfather Boromoraja Ekataat V has been murdered in Kota Meang Kuang palace. His body was soon officially buried at the Siamese Muslims kings cemetery in kampong Tualang.

The location of Boromoraja Palace was leak to the thai armies by non other than Ahmad Tajuddin Halim Syah, Tunku Laksemana Laut of Kedah (he is not the Sultan of Kedah) as commonly believe.

Nai Lang prepares his armies to capture Ahmad Tajuddin Halim Syah. With British help Ahmad Tajuddin soon escaped to Penang and then to Malacca until 1843. For more than 20 years in Malacca he did nothing but wrote history in a Malay perspectives (ketuanan Melayu) with budget supported by the British colonial masters. Unfortunately, his imaginative writings became the source of historical reference in Malaysia today.

Po Chan Koya Long soon replaced his father as the new king and coroneted at Brahman Indera in 1821. in the Kedah Historical Convention Book published ini 1981, it is clearly stated that the Prince of Raja Siam Ligor Nambang resides at Alor Ganu Palace, Anak Bukit between the year 1821-1839. His son Nai Lang became the Bendahara and resides at Istana Kuning palace. Istana Kuning palace was build by their great great grandfather, Boromokot Sultan Muhiyuddin Mansor Syah who resides in Langkawi Island.

Tunku Mohammad Chan became the new Prime Minister and Raja of Kota Setar and reside at Istana Kota Burha. His son Nik Diah @ Ngah Muhammadiah was coronated as the new Sultan of Kelantan bearing the title Sultan Muhammad I residing at Istana Kota Raja Legeh Kok Lanas in Jeli, Kelantan.

Four of Sultan Mudzaffar Syah III @ Po Chan grandchildren, Nai Long Jaafar became the Raja of Larut while his younger brother Nai Long Abu Toha became the raja of Selama. Syed Mohammad Hatta Jamlulail, Raja Kayang (Perlis) who was killed in 1821 was replaced by his son Syed Harun Jamalulail.

His younger brother Sultan Ismail became the Raja of Kinta. The name Jamalulail originates from Jamalul Alam Badrul Munir, the son of Raja Merong Mahawangsa the first descendent of Bani Hashim.

Please view the Malay Laguage versions with pictures and other links here,