türkçe links to original Turkish article
(Sözcü Newspaper, 16 February 2016)
Don't even hum this tune!
Some of the 'fetvas' (religious opinions) promulgated by the
Turkish Ministry of Religious Affairs over the last two months
have included the following: "engaged couples should not be
alone together.", "it is a sin for women to have their eyebrow
and mustache hairs removed." and "it is not improper for a father
to have sexual desires toward his own daughter." (!)
As the discussion continues over these fetvas, the Ministry,
which has an annual budget of 6.5 billion TL (about 2 billion
USD), has now promulgated a fetva concerning music. In response
to the question "what is the place of music in religion?", the
Ministry issued the following response: "there is no evidence that
music is a sin. There is no objection to listening to music types
that do not violate basic beliefs, religious duties and morality and
to music which does not cause wrongful actions."
Keep it clean, Cowsills.
The Ministry's fetva went on to caution, though, that "it is a sin to
make and listen to music that contains lyrics and depictions that
foment sexual desires and show wrongful acts to be attractive."
A children's magazine put out by the Ministry has also sparked
controversy. In the latest issue a fairy tale entitled "Invisible
Cloak", the depiction of the mother turtle in a headscarf has been
noted by critics. The mother turtle advises her child and a squirrel
that everyone has an invisible 'takva' (fear of God) cloak that
strengthens them as long as they do good.
What turtle soccer moms are wearing these days.
And in Ankara, posters on the metro and buses that encourage
students to choose religious courses at school have been noticed.
The posters have the slogan "it takes just a moment to choose,
the benefit is seen in two worlds." It is not known who prepared