self-deprecating and occasional tongue-in-cheek look at ourselves and
the world around us ......
Sunday, 2 November 2008
News you won't find on CNN!
CCN wishes all Hajjis and
their Hajj this year a safe
and rewarding trip.
May all your duas and
prayers be accepted, Ameen
It has been a busy couple
for the Islamic College of Brisbane (Karawatha).
Lippiatt, President of the Sunnybank RSL
(left in picture) presented the
School's captains, NeslihanKartal
and AliSyed, and Principal, Dr Noor (right in
picture) with a commemorative plaque.
Forde (left in picture),
President of the Kuraby Lions presented the
school with a certificate acknowledging the
support and efforts of the students in
enabling 1,800 trees and shrubs to be
planted locally as part of National Tree
Planting Day and World Environment Day 2008.
Mr. Forde also
donated a cheque of $500 from the Lions to the School.
In an attempt to overcome stereotypes and
misconceptions, two Brisbane youth groups
hosted a lunch bringing together secondary
school students and a group of marginalised
The event was made possible
through the efforts of the Muslim Youth
Service and the Brisbane Youth Service which
provides support to reduce the impact of
social marginalisation associated with ‘at
risk’ youth and homelessness.
Students from the Islamic College
of Brisbane and a group of homeless youth
discussed issues affecting Muslim,
particularly mainstream media
misrepresentation of Islam and Muslims and
the subsequent negative social attitudes in
Terrorism, the hijab and
prohibition of pork were some of the issues
discussed over a roast lunch. The homeless
youth shared their views spirituality,
agnosticism and Darwinism with the Muslim
Islamic College of Brisbane
student, Fatima Zahra Jassat said that this
was her first inter-faith dialogue
experience and it had helped her better
understand homelessness and non Muslim
Another student, Azhar Ali said
that although the Brisbane Youth Services
represented a small segment of Australian
society, the inter-faith dialogue was a
step in the right direction to further
develop Muslim and non – Muslim relations.
Brisbane Youth Services, Arts
Health Educator Lani Pereira said the
media’s negative portrayal of Islam and
Muslims had distorted the perception of some
Brisbane Youth Service members and the lunch
was an opportunity to overcome such
Muslim Youth Service community development
officer, Taufan Mawardi said some students
were articulate and engaging at this
inter-faith dialogue but marginalised
Muslim youth who may be ‘at risk’ of having
extreme views should also be involved in
Report by Abdul Rahman
builds Muslim and non-Muslim understanding
(l to r) UNESCO Chair Prof Pal
Ahluwalia; Director of the Hawke Centre,
Elizabeth Ho; SA Premier, Mike Rann; former
Prime Minister Bob Hawke AC; presenter of the
inaugural Nelson Mandela Lecture, Dr Musimbi
Kanayora; UniSA Vice Chancellor Prof Peter Høj;
and UniSA Pro Vice Chancellor International and
Development, Dr Anna Ciccarelli
University of South
Australia (UniSA) has embarked on an ambitious project
to establish a new research centre dedicated to bridging
the divide between the Muslim and non-Muslim worlds.
Launched in October, the International Centre for Muslim
and non-Muslim Understanding is a world first in its
academic focus – moving beyond research into Islam as a
phenomenon – to examining questions of social justice
and social inclusion and their impact on increased
A total of $10 million has been pledged by State and
Federal Governments to provide added impetus to the
foundation and start-up of the research centre.
Key goals for the Centre
include the development of intercultural knowledge,
understanding and reciprocal respect between Islamic and
Western communities across nations.
The Centre will fulfil the vision of former Prime
Minister Bob Hawke, who has been committed to supporting
the goals of peace and reconciliation through dialogue
and diplomacy throughout his career.
Speaking at the launch, Hawke said finding solutions to
the increasingly hostile tensions between Muslim and
non-Muslim worlds was one of his greatest wishes.
"UniSA has accepted the challenge to set up the Centre,
which will have a new focus on understanding the
triggers for the prejudices that present barriers to
dialogue," Hawke said.
"I know we have a lot of support from friends around the
world for this initiative and I believe it is time to
harness our intellectual resources, along with empathy
and goodwill to do something to achieve long-term
harmony and understanding."
The establishment of the Centre is being led by
Professor Pal Ahluwalia, UNESCO Chair in Transnational
Diasporas and Reconciliation Studies with support from
the UniSA’s Hawke Centre.
Prof Ahluwalia’s appointment to the UNESCO Chair, the
only one held in South Australia, was also announced at
the launch of the new Centre.
"The Centre for Muslin and non-Muslim Understanding will
be an international hub for new thinking around what
often appear to be implacable issues," Prof Ahluwalia
"In a post-September 11 world, the West has been
bombarded with a single narrative about the Muslim world
– one of threat. Similarly, in Islamic countries,
notions of Western societies are often uni-dimensional
"Part of our research will focus on the role of mass
communications, media and new technologies in
influencing stereotypes and prejudices and acting as a
vehicle for the broad distribution of divisive
"We also want to research the sociological factors that
influence prejudice. Poverty, social exclusion, poor
access to education and information can have a
significant impact on the development of misinformation,
a breakdown of trust and significantly, of communication
and understanding. These factors are as important to the
debate as religious difference."
Prof Ahluwalia says while the Centre will operate in an
international context collaborating with other centres
internationally, the Australian historical experience of
migration and of policy formation around race and
culture would offer some unique perspectives on
questions of resettlement, social and cultural divides
and at times successful cultural engagement.
"Some historians have suggested that Australia’s first
Muslim contact came with the Macassan traders in the
17th century and there were Muslims among the early
fleet settler and convict populations.
"Larger numbers came to SA in the 1860s from Afghanistan
as camel experts to work the camel trains and a year
later they built Australia’s first mosque at Marree.
"This engagement is part of Australia’s story – Muslim
engagement with non-Muslim cultures is part of our world
story. Our aim is to work to define a positive future
for that engagement."
Kevin Rudd and Malcolm
Turnbull have both dismissed calls to replace the Lord's
Prayer with an acknowledgement of Australia's
traditional Aboriginal owners at the daily opening of
The nation's peak Muslim
group and the Greens have backed moves to change the
century-old tradition so as to be more inclusive of all
House of Representatives
speaker Harry Jenkins called for debate about whether
the prayer should be rewritten or replaced, saying MPs
and the public had raised concerns about its relevance
to 21st century Australia.
Back row - from left:
Chalani Gunasekara, Honorary Secretary; Serge
Voloschenko, Immediate Past Chair; Simon Finn
MP, Member for Yeerongpilly; Michael Yau, Vice
Chair; Lawrence Springborg MP; Dr Max Brändle,
Vice Chair; Mustafa Ally, Honorary Assistant
Secretary; and Gail Ker, Vice Chair
Front row - from left:
Alan Huynh, Vice Chair; Leo Tsimpikas, Senior
Vice Chair; Victoria Zografos, Vice Chair; Irene
Cayas, Vice Chair; Agnes Whiten, Chair; Rosemary
Menkens MP, Member for Burdekin; Alex Daniloff,
Honorary Treasurer; and Nick Xynias, Honorary
Missing: Peter Vecsey-Dalos OAM,
Honorary Assistant Treasurer
The Ethnic Communities
Council of Queensland (ECCQ)
held its Annual General
Meeting last week at the
Russian Community Hall in
Over 200 people attended the
meeting at which Laurence
Springborg MP, Leader of the
Opposition in Queensland was
the guest speaker.
A new Executive Committee
was elected on the night and
a delightful spread of
exotic food followed.
One room is available for
rent in a 2 bedrooms unit in Fleming Road, Herston.
Rent: $125/week in Advance (Gas, electricity, Internet
and Phone bills will be shared)
Availability: Today. It is a great location for students
either who study at QUT Gardens Point or Kelvin Grove,
or those working at the Royal Brisbane Hospital.
For further details
contact Sumaira Nasim(042 1103437).
Dr Mohammad Abdalla of
GIRU (fourth from left) and Mr. Ikebal Patel
AFIC President (fifth from left) together
with guests at last week's celebration of Saudi
National Day in
Queenslanders Feature in AMAA Awards
The Australian Muslims
Finalists were announced
by Mission of Hope during the week.
The Rawlins Taekwondo Team came
home with 8 gold medals from their recent
tournament in Bundaberg
Quote of the Month
the correct answer is, he is not a Muslim, he's a
Christian. He's always been a Christian. But the really
right answer is, what if he is? Is there something wrong
with being a Muslim in this country? The answer's no,
that's not America. Is there something wrong with some
seven-year-old Muslim-American kid believing that he or
she could be president?
Indonesian police are
investigating a wealthy Muslim cleric who married a
12-year-old girl and is reportedly planning to wed
others aged seven and nine, a spokesman said on Tuesday.
Pujiono Cahyo Widiyanto, a 43-year-old businessman and
cleric from the Central Java city of Semarang, has
courted nationwide controversy over his decision to
marry the girl, who comes from a poor family.
Widiyanto has defended the marriage, which is his
second, saying the girl had already reached puberty.
"We are investigating the case. We are now gathering
witnesses and then we'll look for evidence on what laws
the man might have broken, and we'll follow up from
there', national police spokesman Abubakar Nataprawira
KUALA LUMPUR (AFP) - Muslims in Malaysia may be
barred from the ancient practice of yoga if they engage
in Hindu "religious elements" during the exercise, a top
Islamic cleric said Wednesday.
Harussani Zakaria, a controversial cleric from the
northern Perak state, said the government-backed
National Fatwa Council would soon release a decree, or
"fatwa", which would decide if Muslims were allowed to
"If it involves any faith or religious elements it is
definitely not permissible but if it is just a form of
exercise that is all right," Harussani told AFP.
"Muslims cannot practice yoga in its original form
because it involves another religion," he said in
response to a call to ban Muslims from engaging in yoga.
Muslims Can Now Get Into
The Sack Without Being Offended Say Sony
Muslims can now buy
the hot new Sony PS3 game Little BigPlanet that comes
with their new Sackboy character that is designed to
take on the likes of Mario and Sonic Hedghog from
Nintendo without being offended say Sony.
The new game that created
a furore earlier this month when Sony pulled it from
shelves in Europe because it contained a song that had
the potential to upset Muslims is set to be a category
killer after being released in Australia this week.
The new Sony game LittleBigPlanet minus its song citing
verse from the Koran, which drew protests from some
sectors of the Muslim community, is set to be the star
of Sony's Xmas game offerings this year.
JEDDAH: Russia renewed
its commitment to stronger ties with the Muslim world,
vowing respect for religious values and a stronger voice
for Islamic nations on the global stage at a forum with
Muslim leaders here yesterday.
President of Tatarstan Mintimer Shaimiyev took a
friendly dig at all those who have a habit of blaming
Muslims for everything that goes wrong in the world.
“Thank God, Islam is not being blamed for the global
financial crisis,” Shaimiyev said, speaking to reporters
on the sidelines of the fourth meeting of the
Russia-Islamic World Strategic Vision Group at the
Jeddah Conference Palace.
He said Russia has become a natural partner of the
Muslim world. “One can say that Russia has clearly
defined its strategic path in the Muslim East. It has
become a natural partner of the Muslim world,” he said.
secretary-general of the Organization of the Islamic
Conference (OIC), Eklemeddin İhsanoğlu, has told a
Danish newspaper that Western institutions which deal
with Islamophobia agree that hatred against Islam and
Muslims is worse than racial discrimination.
"Incitement to religious
hatred is a new form of racism, and Western institutions
dealing with Islamophobia are unanimous in saying that
the phenomenon of Islamophobia is worse than racial
discrimination," he stated in a recent written interview
with the Danish Jyllands-Posten daily.
İhsanoğlu stressed that
discrimination is discrimination whether on religious or
racial grounds. İhsanoğlu also clearly expressed that
the OIC is neither against criticism of religion nor is
it calling for a ban on any criticism of religion.
The full text of the written interview with the
questions of Jyllands-Posten, can be found
Readers' Book Club:
You are what you read!
Butcher and Bolt: Two Hundred Years of Foreign
Engagement in Afghanistan
The Duke of Wellington was a
cantankerous reactionary but he knew a thing or two
about Afghanistan: "a small army would be annihilated
and a large one starved". On 13 January 1842, a
sharp-eyed sentry in Jalalabad saw the
more-dead-than-alive figure of the British army surgeon
Dr William Brydon crossing the plain, struggling to stay
on his pony. He had a bad head wound and was bleeding
from the hand. When eventually the pony was taken into a
stable, it lay down and died.
Roughly 16,000 British troops and camp followers hadn't
made it from Kabul - one of the most terrible defeats of
British military might in the 19th century, commemorated
in Lady Elizabeth Butler's painting Remnants of an Army.
Brydon was the sole survivor. The massacre of Lord
Elphinstone's army prompted a series of revenge attacks
by the British, which developed into wars. In 1849, 1850
and 1851, huge numbers of British troops swarmed into
Afghanistan, butchered and then bolted. And still the
Afghans fought back.
All questions sent in are published here anonymously and
without any references to the author of the question.
KB's Culinary Corner
½ cup Castor Sugar
2 tblsps Golden Syrup
1 tsp each ground ginger, mixed spice and
1 tsp Bi Carb of Soda
3 cups cake flour
1 cup hot water
1 cup chopped dates
1 cup chopped Pecans
Cream the butter, sugar and syrup well. Add
the eggs one at a time. Fold in the flour,
spices, and bi carb, dates and nuts. Lastly
add the hot water. Bake in moderate oven –
180c for 1 hour in a loaf tin.
Do you have a recipe
to share with CCN readers?
Send in your favourite recipe to
email@example.com and be our "guest chef" for
The CCN Chuckle
announces to his friend that he is getting married for
the fourth time.
"How wonderful! But I hope you don't mind me asking what
happened to your first wife?"
"She ate poisonous mushrooms and died."
"Oh, how tragic! What about your second wife?"
"She ate poisonous mushrooms too and died."
"Oh, how terrible! I'm almost afraid to ask you about
your third wife."
University of Queensland,
323 Hawken Drive,
Event: Weekly Learning Circle: Sharh
Riyad-us-Saliheen (An Explanation of
'Gardens of the Righteous'
Venue: Prayer Room, University of Queensland
Time: 6.45pm to 7.30pm
Fiqh Made Easy
Room E215 Building 1 (Forgan Smith),
University of Queensland
Time: 6.30pm to 7.35pm
Tafseer al Qur'an (Explanation of the
Venue: Room E215 Building 1 (Forgan Smith),
University of Queensland
Time: 7.45pm to 9pm
Sunnah Inspirations is a
non-profit organisation to cater for Muslim
social support and supplying information to
Muslims and non-Muslims. They have
been doing various activities around
Australia, and have organised Da'wah
information stalls at various universities
in Brisbane. More info can be found on
their website above.
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