Advisory on Kuda Kepang Performances

MUIS has been consulted by the Police (Licensing Department) and MDA on their religious viewpoint on "kuda kepang" performances. 'Kuda kepang' is a traditional Javanese dance. It is performed during some Malay weddings or private functions. The dancers will straddle legless horse puppets and dance to traditional Javanese music. The performance usually involves some non-Islamic practices, including going into a trance, and performing feats like chewing/eating glass and drinking buckets of water.

MUIS holds the view that such performances are not part of Islam and have never been so. Such performances are not a religious function or practice.

In line with MUIS' role to guide the Muslim community in their religious life, MUIS would like to point out that there are elements in some of these performances which are objectionable in Islam. These include the trance-state which lead to the performance of acts that compromise the safety and health of both the performer and members of the public, and the invocation of spirits and jinn. These elements are against the teachings of Islam and must be avoided by Muslims at all times.