(L to R)
Mr. Dado Sacur, Mr.
Yunus Omar, Mr. Reffik Dada,
Mr. Kevin Rudd,
MP, Mr. Yunus Paruk, Mr. Faisal Hatia, Mr. Abdul
Omar, Imam Yusuf Peer, Mr. Farouk Adam, Dr.
Iqbal Sultan, Mr. Suliman Sabdia
(L to R), Mr. Kemal Omar, Dr
Mohamad Abdalla, Kevin Rudd, MP,
Ms. Faiza El-Higzi, Dr Iqbal
Sultan, Mr. Dado Sacur, Senator Clare Moore
community and business leaders met with Kevin
Rudd, MP, Graham Perrett (Moreton
Candidate), Senator Clare Moore and
Michael Choi, MP yesterday (Saturday, 4
August) at a luncheon hosted by Faisal Hatia of
Hatia Property Corporation.
One of the
objectives of the meeting was to introduce some
of the community leaders and entrepreneurs to
the leader of the opposition and to sound out
the concerns of the local Muslim community.
Wine from Saudi
LONDON (AP) - An iPod from California
Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, coins from the emir of
Kuwait and a tea set from Sri Lanka's president are
among the gifts former British Prime Minister Tony Blair
left behind when he resigned last month, government
records released recently show.
Blair received the presents between April 2006 and March
2007. Other gifts include rugs from Iraq, Afghanistan
and Pakistan, glassware from Austria and wine from the
government of Saudi Arabia, where alcohol is banned.
Government ministers must declare any gift valued at
more than $280, and either buy them or hand them over to
their department for display or storage before leaving
A Winning Combination!
Crescents' Chicks, Cup Cakes and Coffee!
Bilkish Omar, Safia Casoojee
and Zubeida Abrahams
The Crescents of Brisbane stall at the
Junior sports day at the Warrigal Road State School
raised $360 for the school and $120 for the Crescents
Emergency Relief Fund.
Thank you to all the wonderful ladies of
the community who made the cup cakes.
They certainly went like the proverbial
largest festival of Indonesian arts ever staged in
Australia will be held at the Brisbane Powerhouse from
Experience contemporary Indonesia through
the eyes of its most prominent artists and cultural
leaders in this five-day festival packed with music,
dance, photography, food and dialogue.
Explore the many faces of Australia’s
largest and closest neighbour.
Some of the shows in the lineup:
One of Indonesia’s most celebrated actors brings his
satirical genius to the Brisbane stage in a brilliant
show that explores the role of the critic in democracy.
Direct from Bandung, West Java, comes this spectacular
piece of physical theatre about the struggle for
freedom, democracy and normality.
Generation Y Indonesia are in town. Catch the crazy,
cool and original pop rock tunes of one of Indonesia’s
most popular bands in this exclusive one-off show!
What does the future hold for Indonesia and Australia?
Join a range of leading academics, thinkers and social
commentators from Australia and Indonesia as they
discuss social, political and spiritual perceptions of
Drawing influence from a thousand islands and as far
away as Europe and New York, Indonesia’s most prominent
contemporary gamelan ensemble is world music at its
The Brisbane Muslim Burial Services (BMBS)
will be conducting a GHUSL class at the Kuraby Musjid on
Saturday 11 August 2007 after Zuhr Salaah (1:30pm).
The class will be a practical
demonstration by Moulana Uzair on how to perform Ghusl.
All Brothers are invited to attend Insha-Allah.
MESSENGER: the meanings of the life of Muhammad
Review by ALISON COTES
whose knowledge of Islam comes only from the images of
violence, repression and fanaticism that are shown by
the western media today will have trouble recognising
the Muhammad whom Tariq Ramadan portrays in this
There must be almost as many biographies of Muhammad as
there are of Jesus of Nazareth, but this latest one is
full of surprises for anyone who thought that the
Prophet (“Peace be upon him”, as all good Muslims say)
was a warrior who advocated intolerance, conversion by
the sword, and the subjection of women.
What are we to make of this man who, like the Suffering
Servant in the Book of Isaiah, was despised and rejected
of men, took counsel and inspiration from his wives,
acknowledged both Jews and Christians as People of the
Book, and who taught his Companions, his special
followers, that they must go beyond blind obedience and
mechanical mind-destroying imitation and take their own
initiatives? This is very close to the teachings of Paul
in the Christian tradition, when he utters the dictum
that the letter of the law kills, but the spirit gives
The immediate conclusion from Ramadan’s sympathetic
biography is that the founder of Islam, like many other
religious figures, has been sadly misinterpreted by his
followers, and that his often admirable precepts have
been disregarded to suit his followers’ personal and
political agenda. And this suggests a truth almost
universally acknowledged, that all religions and their
gods, no matter how worthy their foundation principles
may be, can be tainted by later generations who seek
fashion their god in their own image.
It hasn’t just happened in Islam – it’s happened in
fanatical sections of Judaism and Christianity, those
other Peoples of the Book, and it happens in
non-monotheistic religions too.
Tariq Ramadan doesn’t make this point specifically, but
for anyone who has studied religious history, the
inference is there to be drawn.
And that’s one of the great achievements of the book,
that by concentrating on the life of the Prophet and
leaving us to work out for ourselves what has happened
to his teachings, we can read his narrative on two
levels, and be informed by the sub-text as well as the
Even on the surface level, it’s a fascinating read. The
author is a renowned scholar – and the fact that he had
to resign a proffered position as Professor of Islamic
Studies at the University of Notre Dame because the US
refused him an entry visa probably says more about US
paranoia than it does about his qualifications, which
are impressive. With a doctorate from the University of
Geneva, one-on-one studies from Islamic scholars at the
Al-Azhar University in Egypt, many years teaching
Islamic Studies at Freiburg University in Switzerland,
and his present position as a visiting fellow at St
Antony’s College, Oxford, he can hardly be dismissed as
a fanatic, even though he is a true believer.
He writes with authority and close attention to detail,
and uncovers many facts - as opposed to myths – about
the life of Muhammad that may not have been available to
ordinary readers before. And the character who comes
across in this biography is a man of wisdom, reason and
compassion, not the sword-wielding fanatic that the
enemies of Islam have portrayed him as.
The question he posits is whether the Prophet’s life, as
opposed to the perversion of his teachings by others,
can once again become an exemplar and an inspiration,
and whether it’s possible to move Islam away from the
current fixation on rules and rituals to a deeper
spiritual and social understanding.
The author has been described as the Martin Luther of
Islam, and his followers, who are legion, tend to be
educated young Muslims from Europe and America. The book
will surely bring more people in the West to an
understanding of the foundation theories of Islam, but
whether his cry for understanding, echoing the Prophet’s
demand that his followers, in their dealings with other
religious groups, must go beyond tolerance to learn,
listen and recognise the dignity of others, will go down
as well in some Muslim countries is another matter.
But perhaps the message can be projected beyond the
Islamic world, for Christian nations and radical Jews
need to learn this lesson as much as Muslims do. Those
who have ears to hear, let them hear, as an earlier
religious leader famously said – and was equally
"The Messenger: the meanings of the life of Muhammad”,
by Tariq Ramadan, is published in paperback by Allen
Lane, an imprint of Penguin Books. RRP $29.95 (ISBN
Review first published in The
Courier-Mail on 28 July 2007.
take aim at Bin Laden musical
LONDON: A satirical musical about
Islamist terrorism and Al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden
has sparked protests in Britain, with critics blasting
it as tasteless.
"Jihad: The Musical," which features songs including "I
wanna be like Osama" and is described as "a madcap
gallop through the wacky world of international
terrorism," is on at the Edinburgh Fringe festival this
But a petition has been launched on Prime Minister
Gordon Brown's Downing Street website.
"We the undersigned petition the prime minister to
condemn the tasteless portrayal of terrorism and its
victims in 'Jihad The Musical,' says the online protest.
The musical, by the Silk Circle Production company, had
its world premier this week in the Scottish capital's
Fringe festival, famous for satirical and off-the-wall
It tells the story of a young Afghan peasant, Sayid, who
dreams of making it as a flower farmer selling poppies
to the West.
But his plans are thwarted by a jihadi cell seeking to
blow up Western targets, in particular one known as the
"Unidentified, Very Prestigious Landmark."
x PS2 black console with 1 control, memory card 8mb
and DVD remote control. Very good condition.
Has been chipped (lifetime warranty) to
play burned & originals. Incl 25 games such as Shrek
2&3. Need 4 Speed. Pimp my Ride. Simpson.
$325 or nearest offer. Kuraby 0405 229
Mate: Inside Australia: SBS
Set amidst Melbourne's diverse Muslim
community, Halal Mate is a four part series telling
intimate and moving stories about some fascinating young
By following characters as they go about their
day-to-day lives, the series challenges some popular
misconceptions about Muslim Australians. In contrast to
the fear often generated about Islam in news and current
affairs programs, Halal Mate takes us on an excursion
into the real lives of ordinary Australian Muslims.
Afifa - an aspiring soccer player, The Brothahood - a
Lebanese rap group, Houssam - a Halal butcher, and
Margie - a Collingwood supporter and ex-Irish Catholic.
Halal Mate grapples with issues both large and small -
from finding true love to simply getting a driver's
licence. It follows a diverse bunch of characters who
work, fall in love, play sport, and have dreams and
ambitions, while living by the code of Islam in downtown
Houssam is a devout and respected member of the
community, a businessman responsible for 30 staff and a
growing Halal empire. Afifa is a fun loving, champion
soccer player, struck down mid career with a serious
love prospect. The Brothahood are brimming with attitude
and energy, excited by the prospect of their music
reaching out to the wider world. And Margie is an Aussie
revert who is new to Islam and decides to move back to a
rural life in country Victoria.
These fascinating characters tell simple yet compelling
stories of warmth and passion as they struggle to
prioritise career, family and faith, and live their
lives with devotion and humility.
Part 1 of the 4 part series was shown on
1 August at 8pm
POP legend ... Yusuf
Islam, formerly known as Cat Stevens,
performs during the Live Earth concert in
Hamburg, July 2007
The "Why now
after 28 years?" question
meets with a sweet answer.
He and his wife, Fauzia
Mubarak Ali, the daughter of
a Surbiton accountant, have
five children. One of them,
his 21-year-old son
Muhammad, brought a guitar
into the house and started
assumed that his religion
frowned on music. "But my
son helped me come to a
better understanding of
where music sits in Islamic
culture and I found myself
free to sing again."
So there was
no taboo about it, after
all? "My son broke the taboo
for me, because he had no
hesitation in buying a
guitar. He is a Muslim, too.
It made me realise again
that music helps us to share
It sounded as if he was a victim of religious profiling, but does he blame people for feeling nervous when they see bearded Muslims on planes?
"Even I get nervous when I see someone with a beard, if I don't know who that person is," he says. "It's true that some look a bit frightening. Some of these people, I know them, they look ferocious.
"The beard happens to give a masculine look, a more virile appearance, but what goes on behind it, well, I'm an example, if you listen to my music. Yes I had a beard as Cat Stevens but now I have grown wiser and my beard is longer."
"Because of the extremes that some people have gone to, on both sides, of wanting to start wars and polarise the world into two camps, and I think the natural instinct of humanity is to come to a balanced position after a while."
Does he feel his religion has been hijacked by extremists who don't represent what he thinks?
"There are extremists on both sides who are determined to create conflict, and so they have missed one of the great messages that Islam contained peace in its own name: salaam. Islam. That is one of the first things I learnt as a Westerner . . . didn't I write a song called Peace Train? A Muslim roughly translated is someone who has made peace with God and who has learnt to live with others."
His manager – bearing in mind this year there is a fresh album doing the rounds after 28 years and there's a career needing "managing" once more – comes in and says that his man doesn't want to answer questions about Iraq, which might seem a little eccentric, given that Yusuf Islam is a pop star.
But I know what he means. Whether he likes it or not, Islam has been cast in the role of unofficial ambassador for Britain's two million Muslims, and in recent years that has not been the easiest gig in the world.
On the CD box of this year's album An Other Cup, his former stage name is, perhaps with some weariness, acknowledged on a sticker. He can't get away from it, it seems. But even if it wasn't there, you would know straight away it was Cat Stevens you were listening to – a semitone lower, but the same folksy, fluid, easygoing vocals and acoustic guitar patterns, a patina familiar from songs such as Moonshadow, Father and Son, Peace Train, The First Cut is the Deepest and, that staple of school assemblies, Morning Has Broken.
AMAL Helpline is a new telephone
counselling/crisis line initiative designed to meet the
unique cultural and religious needs of the diverse
Australian Muslim community. It is a free service that
will be staffed by volunteer telephone counsellors
offering emotional support.
Hours of Operation
between August 1st - October 31st 2007
Monday - Thursday 10am-1pm 4pm-8pm
Friday-Saturday- Sunday 10am-1pm 4pm -12am
CALL 1300 787 257
for Hope and Help
The CCN Centre Link
International Islamic School has a vacancy for a
Year 1/2 Primary Teacher. Must hold current Teacher
Please email CV to
firstname.lastname@example.org or phone the
Principal Mr Peter Michalski on 3372-1400
The CCN Savings Tip
From a subscriber of simple savings
When confronted with a new product, it
pays to find out about its origins before buying! I was
intrigued and excited to read about a product called
soapnuts, so did some background reading on the subject.
I discovered that these 'nuts' (the dried
fruit of the Sapindus Trifoliatus tree) are of Indian
origin and have been commonly used by Indian people for
all manner of cleaning/washing purposes. Indians call
the trees and fruit Aritha/Ritha/Reetha.
Once you know the original words for the
product you can then bypass overpriced 'eco-friendly'
suppliers selling Soapnut Powder at $48 per kg ($4.80
per 100g!) and ask your Indian grocer for the same
My baby is only a few months old but I really need help
to start losing
the extra kilos I put on during my pregnancy.
A: Firstly, you need to visit your GP (6 - 8 week
check-up). If all's ok, the best and easiest thing to do
is to start walking. If you have a routine for your
baby, try a daily walk in the park before sleeping time.
You may even find that the fresh air will make baby
sleep a little longer!
Secondly, start eating healthy (fruit and vegies
included) and make sure to drink at least 8 glasses of
water per day. Try 5 smaller meals instead of 3 large
ones. Your main aim should be to move as often as
All questions sent in are published here
anonymously and without any references to the author of
week is NATIONAL HEALTHY BONES WEEK (5 - 11 Aug).
Take the initiative to follow these ideas and invest in
some healthy bone building exercises. Your challenge is
to commit to a program that will strengthen your bones!
EveryBODY needs healthy bones especially through
our adult years. Regular weight bearing exercises is
one of the key aspects for preventing osteoporosis
(brittle bones) in later life. Sufficient intake of
calcium (dairy products) is also very important for
maintaining strong bones. Vitamin D (absorbed from
sunlight or UV light) is another key ingredient to
strengthen the skeleton.
*** HIGH IMPACT EXERCISES (eg. aerobics or running)
*** WEIGHT LIFTING (strength training)
*** RESISTANCE BANDS
*** PUSH-UPS, CHIN-UPS, etc (anything involving
lifting your own body weight)
All of these
exercises will improve on bone strength. Do your bones a
favour and get moving...
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Articles and opinions appearing in this newsletter do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the Crescents of Brisbane team, CCN, its Editor or its Sponsors, particularly if they eventually turn out to be libelous, unfounded, objectionable, obnoxious, offensive, slanderous and/or downright distasteful.
It is the usual policy of CCN to include from time to time, notices of events that some readers may find interesting or relevant. Such notices are often posted as received. Including such messages or providing the details of such events does not necessarily imply endorsement of the contents of these events by either CCN or Crescents of Brisbane Inc.