Archive for January, 2008

Muslims in Australia: Interview with Amir Colan

// January 24th, 2008 // No Comments » // Blog

Another entry for MuslimMatters, this time a podcast interview with the director of the film documentary, “Muslims in Australia”:

It seems that I am gradually becoming MuslimMatters' unofficial media correspondent, as I now blog about yet another documentary concerning a Muslim minority community. But perhaps the readers would be pleased to note that this film is not in fact more sensationalist propanganda designed to divide society, but rather the exact opposite. Continue reading…

Mexico City starts “Grope-free” buses

// January 24th, 2008 // 7 Comments » // Blog

For those who like to think it's only “us” that have this problem, let's face the facts: the same slimy, perverted, male specimens are indigenous to most populations on this planet, and are not exclusive to the East nor the West, though they deserve the same universal fate of castration using very blunt instruments and no anaesthetic – wouldn't you agree, girls?

Mexico City has started a women-only bus service to protect female passengers from groping and verbal abuse common on the city's packed public transportation system.

Millions of people cram into subway trains and buses in the Mexican capital, one of the world's largest cities, and women have long complained of abuse from men taking advantage of overcrowding to sneak in an inappropriate grab.

“One time a man stuck his hand up my skirt. They grab your butt … It's gross,” said 27-year-old office assistant Lourdes Zendejas, who waited 20 minutes during the evening rush hour to catch one of the new buses.

Continue reading…

Organ Donation: Something to think about?

// January 20th, 2008 // No Comments » // Blog

My latest entry for MuslimMatters, discussing the issue of organ donation:

Discovering this “common ground” between five very different religions, made me realise that, as a Muslim, I've never really thought much about the idea of becoming an organ donor before. I had some inkling that it was permissible in Islam, but had not yet embarked upon a serious quest to decide whether or not I should carry a donor card. In light of this recent debate, and the fact that I don't know how long I have left on this Earth, I think it is about time that I did.

Protected: My Big Day Out [RegOy]

// January 13th, 2008 // Enter your password to view comments. // Blog

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Ijtema’s First-Ever Photo Contest!

// January 11th, 2008 // No Comments » // Blog

Titled: New Year, New Hope. Open to any Muslim who owns a camera! So get started, and pass the word on:

To start the new year with a bang, and as part of our drive to introduce more varied content onto, we have decided to host our very first competition in the form of a photo contest, titled “New Year, New Hope“. Please head over to our Flickr group to read more about this exciting project, and register your interest:

Also visit to find out more.

More Angry Brown People on the News

// January 8th, 2008 // 10 Comments » // Blog

I switch on the TV,
and flip to BBC News 24.

I see images of angry, brown men,
holding up home-made placards,
shouting incoherent slogans,
setting fire to things.

I think to myself:
“Has the Pope made another speech?”
“More cartoons mocking the Prophet, sallalahu 'alayhi wa salam?”
“Perhaps the teddy bear now has a wife named Khadija?”

Turns out,
it was just about the Cricket.

If religion “is the opiate of the people”*,
then Sport is their crack cocaine.

*For the sake of interest and education, here is Karl Marx's quote in context (courtesy of Wikipedia):

Religion is, indeed, the self-consciousness and self-esteem of man who has either not yet won through to himself, or has already lost himself again. But man is no abstract being squatting outside the world. Man is the world of man—state, society. This state and this society produce religion, which is an inverted consciousness of the world, because they are an inverted world. Religion is the general theory of this world, its encyclopedic compendium, its logic in popular form, its spiritual point d'honneur, its enthusiasm, its moral sanction, its solemn complement, and its universal basis of consolation and justification. It is the fantastic realization of the human essence since the human essence has not acquired any true reality. The struggle against religion is, therefore, indirectly the struggle against that world whose spiritual aroma is religion.
Religious suffering is, at one and the same time, the expression of real suffering and a protest against real suffering. Religion is the sigh of the oppressed creature, the heart of a heartless world, and the soul of soulless conditions. It is the Opiate of the people. [Emphasis added]
The abolition of religion as the illusory happiness of the people is the demand for their real happiness. To call on them to give up their illusions about their condition is to call on them to give up a condition that requires illusions. The criticism of religion is, therefore, in embryo, the criticism of that vale of tears of which religion is the halo.

Lyrics that Sell

// January 2nd, 2008 // 11 Comments » // Blog

I'm feeling a certain affinity for the song lyrics accompaning a TV ad for a new car; UK readers will probably recognise it instantly:

Beep, beep, beep, beep, beep, beep, beep,
go the horns in the cars in the street.
We walked away from the lover's leap.
Opposite directions,
synchronised feet.

Wait, wait, wait, wait, wait, wait, wait,
for the time it takes a heart to mend a break.
How many moons are reflected in the lake?
Can you wait forever,
if time is all it takes?

Despite all the warnings,
I landed like
a fallen star
in your arms.

Beat, beat, beat, beat, beat, beat, beat,
goes my heart on the side of my sleeve;
whispering something I can hardly believe:
“Let me take the lead,
cos love is all we need.”

An affinity for everything, except the last line, that is.