After Christchurch and the Sri Lankan attacks, Muslim women embrace Ramadan

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Of Zena Chamas

Posted

5 May 2019 at 06:00:18

Sabilla Kirnab has been looking forward to Ramadan every year of her childhood, but this year a new sensation has crept in.

"When I first heard of filming in Christchurch I was afraid, I didn't want to go to the mosque."

In the shadow of the attacks in Christchurch and Sri Lanka, many in Australian Muslim communities feel nervous as they approach Ramadan, a key holiday in the Islamic calendar.

"But then I realized that what people really shoot they want: they want us to be afraid," he says.

Encouraged by the support within and outside his community, Sabilla hopes that the month of Ramadan will be an opportunity to shift attention to gratitude and self-improvement.

Sabilla lives with her family of eight children, their pony Theodore and the Apollo dog in the western suburbs of Sydney.

During Ramadan, she will fast from dawn to sunset, a ritual that began at the age of seven.

"People say: & # 39; Oh my God, don't you eat for a whole day? You can't actually drink water for a whole day?"

"I'm not controlled by food, I'm not influenced by seeing others eat, it's something I've worked to achieve, it's a desire I've overcome," he says.

"I don't really miss certain foods when I'm fasting, but, oh yes, I miss my cinnamon tea."

The twelve-year-old says that her favorite things are often the simplest: nature, a good book and a cup of tea. As a self-taught book reader, she also abandons books for the month, which will be difficult as she reads the Harry Potter series, one of her favorites.

But Sabilla says that the absence makes her more grateful.

"Sometimes it takes hunger to realize what's really important: we take food and water for granted and don't realize what we have until it's gone."

& # 39; I don't want to die & # 39;

This Ramadan, Niddal Karaki – a 31-year-old mother of three – is using the month to evaluate his life and count his blessings.

"Ramadan is a time for the spiritual cleansing of the mind, body and soul – a time for forgiveness and acceptance".

Niddal works with children in disadvantaged schools as a learning and support officer and hopes to inspire children to become the future leaders of our society.

In the wake of Christchurch, his support efforts got closer to home when his children were afraid to go to the mosque.

"Every week they said:" I don't want to die. It was so upsetting to think that my children felt that way, and I wasn't able to do anything about it. "

Niddal says it's important to keep pushing forward, teaching his children to live their lives to the fullest and let "love conquer you hate once and for all".

Fatima Bazzi, a 28-year-old student, encourages Muslim communities to continue attending the mosque, despite their fears.

"Let our communities start this (message of love and solidarity) by opening their doors to the mosque and allowing us to keep our hands in prayer regardless of our denominations," he says.

Fatima often looks to her childhood with fond memories of Ramadan. He started fasting at age eight. One of the highlights of the month of Fatima is the joy it brings when it is time to break quickly.

"I remember the happiness I felt as a child, knowing that it is Ramadan and that meant having new clothes and gifts at the end of the month."

Fatima says that when it's time to break quickly, the beautiful dishes served with gratitude and happiness remind her of those who are less fortunate.

& # 39; Break fast with us & # 39;

Ramadan is a time that Muslims give to the poor and the disadvantaged, especially on the day of the Eid, which closes the month of fasting.

The owner of the Moroccan soup bar, Hana Assafiri, says that Ramadan helps Muslims practice overcoming the need for immediate gratification.

"It is a time to question our material excesses and find compassion in our hearts and minds for the less fortunate of us".

Hana invites the less fortunate to join her in her Moroccan Soup Bar in Melbourne this Eid.

"To all those who are on the margins of society, who find themselves without a home, without a family, without a community, we invite you to come and break quickly with us."

Zena Chamas is a freelance journalist. Ramadan begins Sunday 5 May.

Themes:

Religion-and-beliefs,

of the community and society,

Islam,

Australia

. (tagToTranslate) ramadan (t) christchurch (t) sri lanka (t) muslim (t) australia (t) women (t) moroccan soup

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