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......a sometimes self-deprecating and occasional tongue-in-cheek look at ourselves and the world around us ......



Sunday, 2 November 2008

 .Newsletter 0208


News you won't find on CNN!





Hajj Mabroor!


CCN wishes all Hajjis and Hajjianis making their Hajj this year a safe and rewarding trip.


May all your duas and prayers be accepted, Ameen



ICOB Activities


It has been a busy couple of weeks for the Islamic College of Brisbane (Karawatha).


Mr. Robert Lippiatt, President of the Sunnybank RSL (left in picture) presented the School's captains, Neslihan Kartal and Ali Syed, and Principal, Dr Noor (right in picture) with a commemorative plaque.

Mr. David 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 youth.

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 the West.

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 students.

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 beliefs.

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 prejudices.

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 cross-cultural events.


Report by Abdul Rahman Keri

UniSA 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 modern tensions.

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 says.

"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 and negative.

"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 information.

"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."



Rudd and Turnbull Back Daily Prayer in Parliament


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 federal parliament.


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 Australians.


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. 


Read the rest....

Seeking approval: Muslim school plans scale-back


The Quranic Society has confirmed it will scale back contentious plans for an Islamic school at Camden.

The society says has indicated to the Land and Environment Court that it intends to reduce student numbers from 1,200 to 900.

A spokesman, Fouad el Chami, says it is an attempt to address the concerns of residents and the local council.

"We were advised to reduce the number of students and hopefully it will be approved," he said.



Read the rest....


Muslims desire to be buried here


The Ahmad family have called Camden home for nearly four decades and now they are hoping they can be buried here.

"We're very proud to be Camdenites,'' Arjmand Ahmad said.

"We have always felt that we are part of the community.

"We have never had a problem and feel the same way about Camden that other people do who live here.''

Ms Ahmad, together with her father Bashir, mother Rizwana and brother Naseer, are hoping Camden Council will agree to set aside 70 burial plots at Camden cemetery for Islamic burials.

Bashir Ahmad feels that it was not by chance that he came to Camden 37 years ago as a physiotherapist.

The village in which he grew up in Pakistan was founded in the same year as Camden.

Read the rest....


ECCQ Executive


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 President.

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 Woolloongabba.



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.


More about the ECCQ


A room for rent (only for female)


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)
Bond: 2weeks
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).


Saudi National Day


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 Canberra.

Queenslanders Feature in AMAA Awards




The Australian  Muslims Achievements Awards Finalists were announced by Mission of Hope during the week.


List of finalists


Haris' Haul of Gold


The Rawlins Taekwondo Team came home with 8 gold medals from their recent tournament in Bundaberg

The CCN Quote of the Month


"Well, 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?  


Who said this of whom?

Ricky and a Trio of Local Fans


Ashraf, Omar and Farah Solwa of Kuraby share the Taj Hotel in Delhi with 'Punter'.

From the IWAQ Desk......


The marriage workshop series is fast approaching. This will be an excellent series and we hope you take full advantage of it.


The deadline for registration has been extended.


Please be aware that you must come at least 15 minutes prior to starting time.


This will ensure that you do not miss out on any information as Dr. Sadiq is very punctual and starts on time. The Marriage workshop series is not only about matchmaking, that is only part of it

The Muslim Marriage Toolbox with Dr. Mohammed Sadiq

Muna Ibrahim

Around the Muslim World with CCN


'Muslim cleric plans to wed seven-year-old'

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 told AFP.
Read the rest....



Malaysia may ban yoga for Muslims: cleric

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 practise yoga.

"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.

Read the rest....



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.




Imported street artist cops a spray over Melbourne laneway

MELBOURNE City Council has used ratepayers' funds to fly a British graffiti sprayer to paint a gigantic mural in a city laneway.


Mohammed Ali, aka Aerosol Arabic, has mixed street art and Islamic calligraphy in the work, to be unveiled in Spark Lane, off Flinders St, today.


The council and British Council Australia have sponsored the mural as part of the Melbourne International Arts Festival, primarily sponsored by the Victorian Government.


But Graffiti Hurts Australia chief executive Scott Hilditch said any graffiti, council-approved or not, would lead to more vandalism in the area.


And earlier this month, Premier John Brumby denounced Tourism Victoria for promoting graffitied city lanes at Disney World.


Crooked Rib is a group of fourteen young Muslim women

who have been collaborating artistically since late 2007,

exploring what it means to them to be young, female

and Muslim in Melbourne.

Over the past three weeks, Ali has designed and painted Crooked Rib, a 14-piece art collective for young Muslim women that spruiks the importance of saving water.


Ali said legal graffiti spaces were an important canvas for youth expression.


Blogs Follow Ali's blog on the Crooked Rib project


"I make it crystal clear to the young people I work with that I don't support illegal graffiti, but that I promote the techniques of street art.


"Aerosol art is like art spilling from the galleries; it brings positive messages to the people who don't go to conventional art spaces," he said.


Cr David Wilson said the city was strongly against illegal graffiti, but approved "wall art" that added a creative, quirky element to the CBD.


A government spokesman said no state money had gone to the project, and while the Government was a festival sponsor "it is not our role to decide its content"





Russia embraces Muslim world

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.

Read the rest....



Islamophobia worse than racial prejudice 

The 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 here.


The CCN Readers' Book Club: You are what you read!


This week



Butcher and Bolt: Two Hundred Years of Foreign Engagement in Afghanistan


David Loyn


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.

Rest of Review



Would you like to see the cover of your favourite book on our book shelves below?

Then simply email the title and author to thebookclub@crescentsofbrisbane.org


Double click a book cover to find out what others think of the book


CCN has set up an online Book Club at Shelfari to connect with CCN book readers at:


Using the book club you can see what books fellow CCN readers have on their shelves, what they are reading and even what they, and others, think of them.

The CCN Readers' Book Club

Kareema's Keep Fit Column





Q: Dear Kareema, two of my children have struggled with their weight over the last few years. They are both under 12 years old.  How can I help them to lose the weight?






A: My 'kids weight-loss formula' is simple: Less junk food, less time seated and more active play!

Your best healthy choices for them should be made in the supermarket.

The less unhealthy snacks you make available to them, the better their chances of eating healthier.

Try limiting take-away meals as well.
Make sure they have at least 2 pieces of fruit and 5 serves of vegies daily.

They also need at least 1 hour of active play daily - join them outside on their bikes, with a football or just simply
running around playing games they enjoy.


The trick with them is to not even let them be aware that you're
trying to get them to lose weight. They'll love the time spent outdoors with you!




   Fun & fitness with fitballs combined with a challenging boxing routine

WHERE:  YIMBUN PARK,  Padstow Rd, Eight Mile Plains

WHEN: Every Saturday morning -  7:30 to 8:30 am

DATES: Saturday 18th OCT. through to the end of November. 

COST: $10 per session 

CONTACT: Kareema - 0404844786



 PREGNANT PAUSE PROGRAM - Low impact, gentle exercise classes for all our mums-to-be out there!! 

Keep your eye on CCN for the start of this great new program..





My Health and Fitness

Tel: 0404 844 786

(Accredited Member of Fitness Queensland)


Need an answer to a fitness related matter? Send your question to Kareema at  fitness@crescentsofbrisbane.org.

All questions sent in are published here anonymously and without any references to the author of the question.


KB's Culinary Corner





125gram Butter
½ cup Castor Sugar
2 tblsps Golden Syrup
2 Eggs
1 tsp each ground ginger, mixed spice and cinnamon
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 ccn@crescentsofbrisbane.org and be our "guest chef" for the week.


The CCN Chuckle



Mula Nasruddin 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."

"She died of a broken neck."

"A broken neck?"

"She wouldn't eat the mushrooms.

The Notice Board


Click on image to enlarge



Marriage Toolbox

Al-Nisa AGM

 Abrahamic Faiths Concert

IWAQ Swimming


M.Y. Sports Day

AMAA Awards


The Imam & The Pastor



The CCN Date Claimer






(Click on link)





5 November


The Imam and the Pastor

Initiatives of Change & GIRU

Griffith University, Mt Gravatt, Room M10_5.01

373 55821

6.15pm – 9.30pm

7-10 November

Friday to Monday

The Muslim Marriage Toolbox with Dr. Mohammed Sadiq


See brochure

3272 6355

See brochure

13 November


“One God, Many Voices” Abrahamic Faiths Concert

Queensland Forum for
Christians, Jews and Muslims

Griffith University: Multi-Faith Centre

3735 7052


30 November


Al-Nisa AGM


Garden City Library




30 November


M.Y. Sports Day


OZ Sports Springwood, 3269 Logan Rd, Underwood

04 11 398 948

9am to 4pm

8/9 December





To claim your date for your event email ccn@crescentsofbrisbane.org.





This week taleem for ladies will be held on Thursday 6 November at the home of Khairun Din Mohammed, 8 Wandilla Place Kuraby from 12pm-1pm.


Sunnah Inspirations


Contact: 0408 270 421

University of Queensland,
323 Hawken Drive, St. Lucia

Every Monday

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


Every Friday

Subject: Fiqh Made Easy


Venue: Room E215 Building 1 (Forgan Smith), University of Queensland

Time: 6.30pm to 7.35pm

Every Friday

Subject: Tafseer al Qur'an (Explanation of the Qur'an)


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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If there is someone you know who would like to subscribe to CCN please encourage them to send an e-mail to ccn@crescentsofbrisbane.org with the words “Subscribe Me” in the subject line.


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.