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CMCF urges respect for Ramadan observance

By 18 September 2009 16

The Canberra Multicultural Forum supports the ACT’s Muslim community as it continues to observe the Holy Month of Ramadan, Chair Sam Wong said today. 

“Ramadan is one of the great faith celebrations, marked by Muslims throughout the world – a time for reflection and introspection,” Mr Wong said. “A key part of this observance is fasting between dawn and dusk. During daylight hours devout Muslims will not even take water. “I have nothing but admiration for this example of dedication and self-sacrifice over a full month. The example set is a lesson to us all.” 

Mr Wong said it could be even more stressful and difficult for Muslims to observe Ramadan in countries where they are in a minority. “In the Islamic world arrangements are made – many employers do not insist on a full working day. Obviously this is not the case in Australia,” he said. “I would call on employers, teachers and the community in general to remember that this is the Ramadan period and to respect and support their Muslim friends and colleagues in their observance.” 

Mr Wong said there was bipartisan recognition for Ramadan, with all three parties represented at the recent dinner to mark the beginning of the holy season in the ACT. 

“It is very gratifying to hear the Minister for Multicultural Affairs, John Hargreaves, his Liberal Shadow, Steve Doszpot and the Greens’ spokesperson on Multicultural Affairs, Amanda Bresnan, follow each other to the microphone to voice support not only Ramadan, but the spirit or harmony and multiculturalism in the ACT,” he said. 

“With the issue of assaults on overseas students elsewhere in Australia sadly back in the news, we are in need of statements such as these.” 

Muslims in the ACT can gain support and guidance by listening to Radio Ramadan, on FM103.1, 24 hours a day and through Radio CIC on Valley FM89.5  

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16 Responses to CMCF urges respect for Ramadan observance
#1
Woody Mann-Caruso11:01 am, 18 Sep 09

If an invisible unicorn told me to starve myself for a month I’d be put in a special hospital until I came to my senses. Change ‘invisible unicorn’ to ‘vengeful desert genie’, though, and I’d be ‘an example to us all’.

#2
Skidbladnir12:49 pm, 18 Sep 09

Isn’t this kind of a bit late an announcement, though? Ramadan ends on Sunday…

#3
Mr Evil1:32 pm, 18 Sep 09

Woody Mann-Caruso said :

If an invisible unicorn told me to starve myself for a month I’d be put in a special hospital until I came to my senses. Change ‘invisible unicorn’ to ‘vengeful desert genie’, though, and I’d be ‘an example to us all’.

Woody, you’re so intolerant! :)

#4
Granny1:36 pm, 18 Sep 09

I think the schools do make allowances for observing Ramadan.

I know that our special school did a unit on it a few years back when we had a little girl attending from a Muslim family.

Also, I know of another public school that was very supportive of a particular student’s need to pray at certain times of the day according to the tenets of his Islamic faith.

I think most of the other children benefited from learning to understand and accept this religious diversity in their community.

#5
Pommy bastard1:50 pm, 18 Sep 09

Pommy bastard said :

“A key part of this observance is fasting between dawn and dusk. During daylight hours devout Muslims will not even take water. “I have nothing but admiration for this example of dedication and self-sacrifice over a full month. The example set is a lesson to us all.”

I agree with Woody. While I respect the right of others to their beliefs, in no way do I congratulate them or admire them for their idiocies. Ham sandwitch anyone?

#6
Cletus 22:28 pm, 18 Sep 09

Fortunately, at least for rich muslims, there are loopholes that allow one to circumvent the fasting.

#7
NoAddedMSG3:20 pm, 18 Sep 09

Cletus 2 said :

Fortunately, at least for rich muslims, there are loopholes that allow one to circumvent the fasting.

There is a reasonable list of exemptions from fasting, none of which have anything to do with personal wealth.

#8
luther_bendross5:08 pm, 18 Sep 09

Wait wait wait, let me get this straight. So some guy makes a universe purely for humans in a week, then puts us on this tiny planet filled with all sorts of stuff to keep us nourished, then we show our appreciation by not eating any of it? Even Danny Nalliah’s witches are having eye-of-toad and newt soup whilst celebrating paganism. Religion: a public insane asylum with no walls and more rules.

#9
Cletus 26:45 pm, 18 Sep 09

NoAddedMSG said :

Cletus 2 said :

Fortunately, at least for rich muslims, there are loopholes that allow one to circumvent the fasting.

There is a reasonable list of exemptions from fasting, none of which have anything to do with personal wealth.

But when treated as loopholes, they certainly are more available to those with more disposable income. And get treated as loopholes by those people they do. I’ve lived in Syria, and also heard the same thing from Iranian friends.

#10
GnT6:47 pm, 18 Sep 09

As a high school teacher we had a few students observing Ramadan. Usually, because they were younger, they were not expected to do the whole thing – they might do one day on one day off, or fast until lunchtime etc. Whatever they felt comfortable with was suppported within their community. The school was usually informed and they were excused from PE for the month.

However there was one boy I remember who decided to go the whole she-bang, inlcuding no water during the day. He didn’t tell the school, and decided to participate in PE. Needless to say we had one sick little boy at the end of the day.

#11
Pommy bastard7:27 pm, 18 Sep 09

GnT said :

However there was one boy I remember who decided to go the whole she-bang, inlcuding no water during the day. He didn’t tell the school, and decided to participate in PE. Needless to say we had one sick little boy at the end of the day.

Allah wanted him to be sick. It wouldn’t have happened otherwise. Obviously.

#12
Mimiboo8:22 pm, 18 Sep 09

luther_bendross said :

Wait wait wait, let me get this straight. So some guy makes a universe purely for humans in a week, then puts us on this tiny planet filled with all sorts of stuff to keep us nourished, then we show our appreciation by not eating any of it? Even Danny Nalliah’s witches are having eye-of-toad and newt soup whilst celebrating paganism. Religion: a public insane asylum with no walls and more rules.

While it’s easy to criticise religion, let’s see the some of the benefits it did bring to this earth – Christmas, tolerance, love thy neighbour, etc… I’m not religious, but sometimes we tend to be too overly critical of something that brought some good to us all.

As for muslims fasting, I think they do it to appreciate things that can be easily taken for granted.

#13
peterh9:18 pm, 18 Sep 09

amusing that there are several muslims that I know that still work during ramadan, expecting to be normal. this is the time of the practical joke for their colleagues, and in hindsight, some must do them some damage, like taping the receiver on the phone, removing batteries from laptops, etc, etc. these poor guys think that they are losing their marbles. it is a very devout person who can go without food all month in the daylight hours, and I admire their will to do this. It is something that they feel that they must do, and is no different to the carrying of the cross at easter, flagellation to expel daemons, and the inquisition. These are all forms of devout behavior from a true believer.

#14
Cletus 212:39 am, 19 Sep 09

Mimiboo said :

luther_bendross said :

Wait wait wait, let me get this straight. So some guy makes a universe purely for humans in a week, then puts us on this tiny planet filled with all sorts of stuff to keep us nourished, then we show our appreciation by not eating any of it? Even Danny Nalliah’s witches are having eye-of-toad and newt soup whilst celebrating paganism. Religion: a public insane asylum with no walls and more rules.

While it’s easy to criticise religion, let’s see the some of the benefits it did bring to this earth – Christmas, tolerance, love thy neighbour, etc… I’m not religious, but sometimes we tend to be too overly critical of something that brought some good to us all.

As for muslims fasting, I think they do it to appreciate things that can be easily taken for granted.

Organised religion is primarily a way for a few to have power over many. Of course they have some good elements, and many well meaning people at all levels (and don’t get me wrong, Christians and Muslims are among the nicest and best people I know). But lots of bad too, and lots don’t bother so much with tolerance or neighbourly love when it’s inconvenient (e.g., stealing oil or blowing up infidels).

To assess the benefits, surely you’d have to compare against a hypothetical world without religion. Hmm…

#15
Pommy bastard7:48 am, 19 Sep 09

Mimiboo said :

While it’s easy to criticise religion, let’s see the some of the benefits it did bring to this earth – Christmas, tolerance, love thy neighbour, etc… I’m not religious, but sometimes we tend to be too overly critical of something that brought some good to us all.

That’s only true if you assume that we couldn’t have had those things without religion.

#16
s-s-a10:22 am, 19 Sep 09

The Muslim faith is not the only one that observes some form of fasting or dietary limitations, so do the Jewish… not to mention Lent.

In majority-Muslim countries, the meals served during Ramadan start after dusk and continue until 3am. Which means it’s probably easier to fast in daylight, and no doubt contributes to the need to not work a full day (probably because they are too tired rather than too hungry/weak).

I didn’t even realise it was Ramadan. If it finishes this weekend, the PR machine has managed to keep me completely oblivious for several weeks.

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