Author Archive

Ned Kelly. Captain James Cook. The Anzacs. Banjo Patterson. All of these Iconic Australian names and titles i remember since i was a kid, they represented our country – Australia- for many different reasons and their names are etched into the framework of our nation and society. 

There is nothing more i love than reading about Australian Icons and Heroes and paying them that due respect. The Anzacs for example, every year are commemorated for fighting for this country, defending our land and their allies and putting a stop to potential invasions and wars presented by enemies of the time.

Give credit where it is due i would say, yet did you know there is an Australian icon and Australian hero that predates all of the names mentioned above? An Australian Aboriginal Icon and he has a name. That name is Pemulwuy.

Pemulwuy is thought to have been born in 1750, some 38 years before the first fleet planted the British Flag on Australian Soil in Botany Bay.  He was part of the Bidjigal  tribe who called that part of Sydney, Australia home.

9344274-3x2-700x467

January 26th 1788 was the day that changed Pemulwuys’ life and turned him from provider into protector.

The raising of the British flag on already occupied land is a very game changing part of our history. It’s literally the beginning of European Colonization and the soon to be degradation of Aboriginal populations. Pemulwuy was a protector and maintainer of his lands and traditions or what one would call a “Warrior” today.

These armed men that started occupying their lands, destroying their environments and building settlements were clearly deemed a threat to Aboriginal tribes in the area who saw a people who came with sophisticated weaponry, travelling vessels and a careless attitude in regards to their sightings of Aboriginals who had called this place home for at least 40,000 years.

The Smallpox disease is said to have started infiltrating into the Aboriginal population by 1789 due to the introduction of the Colonies population. Pemulwuy started his first campaign against the foreign invaders in 1790. Governor Phillips gamekeeper John McIntyre, who was notorious for his cruel treatment and outlook on the Aboriginals,  was speared by Pemulwuy and died of his wounds. This enraged the colony who went out looking for retaliation, only to find no aboriginals in their search.

As the Settlement grew and skirmishes started occurring around the region the tensions were growing between the Colony and Aboriginals. The Settlers started to prey on the vulnerable of the Aboriginals like Women and Children, holding them as ransom and kidnapping them to effectively “bring out” the Men who were thought to be the imminent threat to the settlements.

Pemulwuy_aka_Pimbloy

Pemulwuy protected areas of Sydney including the Georges and Hawkesbury river regions.


At Age 42 in 1792 Pemulwuy increased his defensive measures
, which of course to the colony was an act of offence. He targeted settler camps and properties, conducting raids and the Colony by this point managed to get a good description of the warrior Pumulwuy who was described as an  “active enemy” with a blemish on his left eye.

In 1794 Pemulwuy had his skull cracked by John “Black” Ceasar a huge bushranger of West Indian Descent working alongside the convicts. At this point many were convinced that the Aboriginal Warrior was killed as cheers echoed through settler camps. Yet Pemulwuy survived his injuries without any hospital assistance. Pemulwuy then continued to protect numerous Sydney districts (now known as suburbs- ranging from Parramatta, Prospect, Toongabbie, Georges River and the Hawkesbury River).

As Pemulwy’s notoriety increased among the Colonizers they made many exhibitions to capture him and his tribesmen and for years they failed in their Endeavors. Pemulwuy knew this land like the back of his hand, he knew where to hide and he was accustomed not only to the climate but also the landscape.

In 1797 Pemulwuy and up to 100 Aboriginal Warriors stormed their way into the Parramatta settlements after another raid on Toongabbie and threatened to spear those who got in their way. The soldiers without hesitation opened fire and this time Pemulwuy was shot and injured again by bullets and lead that essentially not only should have killed him, but according to settlers should have killed “30 people”.

hqdefault

Pemulwuy survived so many attacks by the Colony that his own people saw him as an “invisible” force to their weapons.


Pemulwuy was for a brief moment captured but many were shocked by his quick ability to heal that some started genuinely believing he had some superpower against “lead”. 
He eventually escaped yet again and returned to his people and the all so familiar Australian bush that was being cleared for agriculture.

This time when he retreated back into the bush not only did his tribe think he was a Miracle Warrior even he was emboldened enough to believe he was “immune” to the colonizers weaponry.

Approaching twelve years of resistance to the occupation Pemulwuy fought for his land, culture and people. He was relentless in protecting what he and his tribes knew for thousands and thousands of years. He battled soldiers with their 18th and 19th century weapons with humble spears marked with local red wood.

By 1801 rewards were being offered to any who could capture and kill Pemulwuy. Gallons of rum and clothing were offered to those who could kill him and even for those who could provide information to the whereabouts of this mysterious Native.

In 1802 Pemulwuy was caught by surprise by British Sailor Henry Hacking. He was shot and killed. His head was cut off and preserved in spirits before being sent to Botanist Sir Joseph Banks for preservation and showcasing in Britain.

A letter by Governer King at the time admitted that “Although [Pemulwuy was] a terrible pest to the colony, he was a brave and independent character.

From 1802 until 1810 Pemulwuys Son Tedbury continued the resistance until he too was shot and killed only 8 years after his Fathers Death. The Mystery of where Pemulwuys skull is today has yet to be answered.

bust-of-pemulwuy

Pemulwuy, an AUSTRALIAN HERO.

Pemulwuys effect not only to his Aboriginal Brethren yet also to the White Colonizers was huge during its time, so much so that even members of the intruding Colony joined in to fight with Pemulwuy and his resistance, these convicts were named “William Knight” and “Thomas Thrush”.

Just like our Anzacs, Pemulwuy defended his land and his people. He fought tooth and nail and he never backed down in resisting the force that was about to take stronghold in his nation. Respect must be granted to his strength, courage and will to defend himself, his clan, his land and his nation as a whole.

Pemulwuy, not only to me, but also to you – should be seen as an Australian Hero…because he was truly Australian and he was a Hero to the very land that we call home today.  If Pemulwuy were with us today and fought for what we now know to be “Australia” with such confidence and willpower as he did back then, we would label him appropriately and not allow him to be a forgotten part of our story.

Rest In Peace.
Salam

-Ramey

Hey there, yes you! Are you an Alpha or a Beta? Well how about you just say you’re a fucking Charlie and be yourself without caging yourself into a societal frame that is not designed to set you free but instead is designed to imprison you into a shadow of your true self.

Yes, there is a certain pressure with being both male and female in today’s World, yet being a Man myself i feel that i can kick my feet back and have a little say on this subject. I was a weird kid, without doubt, growing up as a young boy i didn’t really fit into any particular stereotype of what it is to be a young man. I experimented, just like all kids do.

Some days i pulled out the race cars and drove them around my fold out street map that i’d place on the floor and other days i’d open my Mothers cupboard and have a laugh as i tried to wobble in her high heels…and there is absolutely nothing wrong with that, in fact i take back that “weird” kid jibe i just hit myself with.

63848_438761009155_6793344_n

Growing up from a boy to a teenager to a man is one rollercoaster.

As i hit adulthood i was at the receiving end of intense bullying, both physical and mental that lasted for 7 years- it was relentless and for a number of factors. Whether it was my weight, my nose, my heritage or simply that i apparently had a slappable head- all i know is that turning from a “Boy” to a “Man” was going to be a long and difficult journey, as it is with many others.

Either way, eventually my confidence boosted, i joined the gym and lost 22kg and my lovable personality came out to shine, for years it had been hidden in some dark grim closet that was so comfortably sad, it had developed cobwebs and mould.

In this transformation from Teenager to Man i knew the battle wasn’t over because not only was i facing the trials of my own personal demons- i now had to put myself on show. I was exposed to the World and had to try and find my “place”. Where did i fit in the paradigm of being a Man in today’s world.?

First of all, don’t compare yourself to others for it is not a helpful route. Comparing yourself to others isn’t a motivational call to self improvement, in fact it is simply a road that will lead to being a false carbon copy of another being. In today’s World a Man is categorized in two main ways, either as the “Alpha”– who is a dominant and strong leader that has drive and success or the “Beta” who is a submissive and weak follower that is at best a pushover.

4MWCjT2x_400x400

The Mythological “Alpha”.

Society always throws “A Real Man” Memes at us but again, these memes are not inspirational, in fact they form part of the problem. There is no “real man” – indeed he is simply a mythological creature that belongs in fairy tale books. We are then confronted with confusing labels such as being referred to as “gentlemen” whilst we are also expected to be strong forces that are rough around the edges.

We are shunned for saying “Boys will be Boys” yet then also shunned if a boy acts like a girl. We see these grown Men nowadays who are so controlled by their label that they walk around with their thick necks, staunched shoulders and intimidating attitudes trying to play character. Almost like a Cos-play of a mythological figure, these Men are not in control of themselves, in fact they are daily on edge trying to be legitimate pretenders- society expects this of them, apparently so, and they fall for it hook, line and sinker.

Recently i was invited by a close friend to a “Mens Club” on Facebook and this page was truly disturbing. It was the epitome of what is wrong with society and how Men are falling trap to this system they can voluntarily pull out of but clearly are afraid to do so. In this group are thousands and thousands of Men from all around the World, who are venting to each other, disclosing personal issues, family dramas, relationship woes and true cries for help all in the midst of the security blanket of a “Male Ear” because they are afraid to express themselves in the real World, a World where Family, Friends, Women and Counselors exist.

All of these Men are afraid to express themselves to the Real World, so instead they create a club, a “safe haven” where they can use their God given right- their voices.
I didn’t find this empowering, that all of my Brothers around the World need secret clubs like this where they only want a fellow Man to hear their problems. It was blatantly obvious that these guys of all different races, ages and regions felt that if they were to speak out in the World how they are in this page, they’d be ostracized and suddenly downgraded to “Beta Males” for shedding tears and expressing true Human Emotions…It’s a train wreck. A calamity.

Image2dfg

I scrub off alright for being a “Charlie” Male 😉

True success is in being comfortable in your own skin and not being afraid to be a Human Being. True success is not giving a damn what people think and its utilizing all of your natural faculties- your logic, reason and yes, your emotions! It is funny that the same people that once told me to “Man Up” when i expressed myself to them are the same Men that are found on these Facebook Pages where men are hiding under a metaphorical blanket. Is it more cowardly to outwardly express yourself and your vulnerabilities as a man to the Entire World or to lurk in hidden groups and express yourself solely to other Men in secret? I’ll let you be the judge of that.

Each day i am trying to “perfect” who i truly am and i have no shame in being a Man. A Man that is so raw and real that if i’m having a shit day, i will tell you, or if i feel like a shoulder to lean on i will go ahead and do it! Or if i need to shed some tears like i am watching “The Notebook” re-runs then i will rightfully do so, all without losing my claim as a Man because i don’t belong to a label, i am not a product for you to stick your labels on and i wish more Men could take that attitude on board and create their own empire, as opposed to ignorantly sitting in a shelf along with their fellow Man. It’s a comfortable place to be but it’s an exceptionally sad and boring place to be.

Salam.

-Ramey.E

 

 

 

“Stop it. How would you like it if somebody did that to you?” – these were one of my first lines of empathy that i remember yelling out to a fellow student in my Music class when i was 12 years old as he started torturing a Moth that happened to fall on his lap by slowly plucking its wings and laughing in ecstasy.

His response?

“Shut the fuck up before i punch your head in.”

At that moment i realized something…Something monumental. I am BETTER than this person. Yes that is right, i confidently could say that at that place and time i could attest to the fact that i was indeed superior to this fellow Human Being by my side who felt no empathy, remorse or regret over the torture of an animal, yes a mere insect but it did not matter to me.

You see i used to see the World in quite a naive light- i believed that no body was above me and that i was above nobody. That somehow we are all seeing each other at the exact same level, eye to eye. This disturbing stance of mine led me to overlook the heinous behaviours of my fellow humans both in childhood and adulthood.

Besides, how could any of us reach for betterment if we are all “equal?” If there is only one throne- 7 billion rears cannot be seated on it at the same time and that is the ultimate reality in life, its the hierarchy of truth, sometimes one person is entitled to that throne- and that one day as a twelve year old kid i can confidently say i earned it.

 

Image1gdf

My views of the World have changed.

 

This might seem like a petty example but there are many more examples of how i was the “better man” in many situations that had occured to me. Like a few years later when a few “friends” of mine cornered a cat in the unit block hall and let it shriek, cower and scream in fear as they were throwing screwdrivers and other tools at it. The fact that i felt an intense sickness in my gut and a seething hatred to these supposed friends in that moment made me realize that i was the better man, too good for their company not only then but even now.

How about the other time a supposed “friend” from a popular group suddenly asked me to “burrow” him my PlayStation and in pure manipulation never spoke to me at high school after i gave it to him. When i finally confronted him months later about giving it back to me he physically threatened to beat me up. I shriveled up as he was a big and intimidating guy but i left with a lesson that day – to trust people less- and to realize despite this happening to me i would never do it to anybody else.

Then there was the work colleague with her wide smile and friendly demeanor who worked at a cafe i had been employed at for a year. I trained her vigorously and would drive her home every time we finished work at night . I thought i had formed a bond and friendship with Will – to only learn that she had been secretly telling my bosses the fabrication that she must “follow up” everything that i do and that i am not pulling my weight- eventually she got me fired and took my job. Even then i would never do that to somebody. I attest to the fact that i am superior in my morals and she was inferior in every way that she had to stoop to such a low to achieve a “success” in her life.

What about the bullies in my school that tormented me every single day for 7 years physically and mentally? Assaulting me in every manner possible, dropping my confidence and marks to all time low. Forcing me to avoid school for three months straight and making me lick a urinal in a dirty school toilet. Why? Because i was a kind natured guy? The truth of the matter is these bullies 25 years later are still the low life scum that they were when they were kids because they were and are inherently , psychologically, mentally and spiritually void beings.

Let me tell you something, success comes from a drive that thrives within you. You don’t use other people to step on to climb to the top, you use other people as motivation on how you can better yourself and all this can be done without putting others down. This false peak of success is short lived and far from satisfying and i am proud to say that everything i achieved in my life was with clean hands.

Never did i drop to such levels in order to get somewhere in life. Each and every single achievement of mine was done with my own drive, work and integrity. Lets be honest, there are shit people in this World. People who are not on your level, people who are sub- par and limited. Do not let these people define the model of which you decide to pave your life, they are mere distractions from the fact that you are wonderful, amazing, beautiful and successful whereas they are the bottom dwellers of our societal framework.

No. We are not equal. I am better and perhaps, so are you? 🙂

PEACE, SALAM.

You see and hear it all the time, inspirational quotes and memes floating all over the internet inspiring you to “be yourself” yet what exactly does it mean to be yourself and do people really accept you for being you?

There is an internal and external struggle that occurs when one person truly attempts the endeavor to be themselves. The internal struggle comes from self acceptance and seeking your inner genuine thoughts. Do you have your thoughts and beliefs? Do you stand by them? These are important questions.

If you fear your own inner thoughts then we have a problem. Sure we do not have to broadcast everything about ourselves yet when it comes to persistence in character and being able to remain consistent in who you are and what you stand for- there should be no shame nor fear in holding on to what you believe in.

RPckfNy

The inner fight is actually being who you are meant to be, not shaped by society or the expectations of others but that internal acknowledgement between your mind and body that speaks to you in a language you understand. When you are doing and saying things counter to your inner self then there is a war waging inside of you.

For example, i am a Muslim and there is a huge stigma that comes with that package nowadays. Often i will be “ashamed” to express that fact and i will attempt to keep my beliefs and thoughts hidden lest i be judged. So then i try to “fit in” with everybody else and that yet again is when the struggle becomes real- you cannot appease everybody else whilst abandoning your true self.

This fight can be said about any human being under any certain context, when they are trying to express themselves but suppress it in order to make others happy- its an unhealthy move that will not pave the way for any fruition.

Now this is only part of the hurdle, the inner struggle to “be yourself” is difficult enough, then comes to external element- how receptive would people be to you truly being yourself? Well the few moments i have been brave enough to tell people who i am and what i am about the searing judgement was at an intense level- the questioning, mockery, suspicion and skepticism was coming.

It was then that i realized- you don’t want me to “be myself” – you want me to be somebody else.! Acceptance is a difficult thing, nobody likes the feeling of being rejected or being the black sheep so often people will alter and adjust themselves to fit comfortably into society.

Why? What is the benefit for you besides living in a mirage? A mirage of false security where you live in a World that wants you to be just like them. ? A democracy where you either “fit in” or become ostracized.

It’s a baffling conundrum but its something i wish to fix on all levels. I am as genuine as i can be but i do things to please others and neglect myself. Many people are truly afraid to be who they REALLY are– no matter who you are out there- find that outlet that genuinely will accept you and take you in for your entire being.

It will be a hard journey where you can be at peace with yourself and everybody else around you but at the end of the day you can live your life as a pretender to make everybody else sleep well at night or you can live your life being true to yourself and allow yourself to sleep well at night. Which would you rather? One sounds much healthier. 🙂

Peace, Salam.

-R

 

 

 

I saw it coming, i saw it coming from a mile away. I am talking about the latest numerous spats by exasperated and fed up local Croatians who have been inundated with tourists from around the World (Thanks, Game of Thrones).

Yet there are some particular tourists that are copping more criticism than others and yes the Green and Gold Aussies are unfortunately one of them. Sure, we have seen it all -the not so wonderful etiquette of tourists coming to our own shores here in Australia, yet i feel like our tourism load doesn’t match our reputation, our “laid back and relaxed” welcome we greet tourists with isn’t the same “laid back and relaxed” attitude we take with us when we travel abroad.

First of all, we like to party. It must be all of our nanny state lock-out laws that make us want to let our hair down and just go crazy at Moon Parties in Thailand or Yachts sailing over the Adriatic Sea in Croatia. I get it, from a Worldwide scale our nightlife sucks and it doesn’t hurt to live a little.

 

article-0-20A65A8E00000578-171_634x355

Drunk Australian man plunges into the Baroque Fountain in Rome. He is then fined.

 

Yet one thing that i think that gets the best of us is that even though we love a good time we are not so accommodating with the customs, laws, rules and regulations of other countries and once this complaint is recognized we can turn from cute cuddly Wombats to ferocious wild “drop bears”. (Relax, they’re not real).

The latest complaint comes from Croatia. I am half Croatian and i have been to Croatia at least six times in my life. All of my Croatian family still reside there and my last visit was in 2015. When i visited Croatia in the Early 90’s until the Early 00’s people would often say “Croatia, where is that?” or they’d seem perplexed and ask if its near “Russia”.

Yet today Croatia is on every Australians radar, it’s pristine beaches, wonderful food and lively people are all part of a very attractive package, i know because i have seen it. I remember in the Mid 1990’s visiting the ancient Fortress town of Dubrovnik, back then i saw next to no tourist buses and crowds were minimal. It was a relaxed, calm and absolutely gorgeous atmosphere where locals and tourists alike could still feel a sense of peace in their day.

You see Croatia was never meant to be the next Ibiza, this is not its authentic self. Despite its huge coast it only has a few “party” towns and even then they were relatively tame compared to many other Worldwide party destinations. Boy has that changed, fast forward approximately 20 years later and Croatia has become a place synonymous with drunken adventures and us Aussies being within the top 20 drinkers in the World, why would we say no?

 

439FEB3B00000578-4828646-This_Australian_tourist_was_fined_for_passing_out_half_naked_in_-a-2_1503884301521

Drunk and part naked Australian tourist sitting in a public bench in Dubrovnik, Croatia.


Yet it appears the Croatians are now fed up
. Accusing Australian tourists of having sex in public, climbing balconies, running amok and starting fights. It was only last month that an Australian man was charged in Split, Croatia for leaving a man with life threatening injuries after a fight.  Australian tourists have also been accused of vandalizing property and smashing up their accommodation.

One Croatian local claims “Young Australians are blatantly performing sex acts on the streets without any shame, pissing in our swimming pools, climbing our balconies and bathing naked in the harbour.’

The problem is these aren’t isolated cases, Croatian paper reports are coming out that are singling out Australian tourists as being especially unpleasant guests. Hospitality workers and residents who deal with Australians would know and it appears our reputation is slowly being flushed down the drain.

This is not only a Croatian problem. I will never forget when i was in Bali, Indonesia – a board short wearing, oakley sunglass wearing Australian male tourist was looking around at one of those poor clothing shacks on the outskirts of Kuta, when he addressed the older lady working there asking how much it was for a particular dress she said “120,000 Rupiah” he scoffed and said “No, no, too much, make it less” then she responded “Can do 100,000 rupiah” he then replied “No! 20,000 Rupiah” which mind you is approximately two Australian dollars. When she looked at him with relative sadness he waved the note over her face and said very condescendingly “do you want it or not!?

 

ANTI-TOURIST-PROTESTS-SPAIN-1030000

Anti Tourist Protests have taken place in Barcelona where locals say they feel “terrorized” by misbehaving tourists.

 

The problem was this man was sober and he was not young either and this is the sort of attitude that puts us all in the wrong books and we don’t deserve it. I know many fellow Australians that want to travel and absorb the country they are staying in. The good and the bad and everything in between they want to embrace as part of their experience.

Unlike another fellow Aussie tourist who complained that she could not openly drink in the United Arab Emirates nor have a “piss up” on the streets without getting arrested- she then went on to complain about the heat and the sufferance of Ramadan, despite not being obliged to partake in it.

I feel like we need to do some extensive research before visiting a place. Look at the local customs and learn them. When in Japan take off your shoes. When in remote areas of Fiji cover yourself with a Sarong. When in Dubai don’t make out in public. When in Croatia be considerate of the locals and keep the noise and rubbish down. When in Bali respect that the people there work hard with tiny wages and don’t need to be reminded how high and mighty your Aussie dollar is. When in the United States- TIP! (Even i despised this, but i conformed!).

If you are an Australian tourist and you are a well seasoned traveler with conduct, then that is wonderful. This post isn’t meant to drop your confidence or make you feel bad, it’s simply to raise awareness that our reputation is dwindling and i don’t want YOU to bear the brunt of the negative repercussions.

Let us put ourselves back in the Global scale as being tourists with dignity, respect and appreciation- let us have fun but also be mindful of the places we’re in and the people we are with. We need to reclaim our reputation and let the World know that indeed we ARE a cultured people, heck we live in one of the most Multicultural nations on this Earth, we should know better and sure as heck we do! So let’s make Australia proud! 🙂

Peace, Salam.

It’s a difficult road ahead for all of us here on Earth. The recent terror attack in Manchester is only one of many tragic events of violence, injustice and horror inflicted on innocent people here in this World and naturally such stories make us lose a bit of morale.

Stories that deal with the death of innocents, whether they be men, women or children constantly flash on our television screens and one thing we must understand is that we cannot become “comfortable” with terrorism, nor can we become desensitized to a violent World.

The Media does not help in this situation because as tragic as the story is we come to find that the media swamps us with the imagery, sounds and woes coming from such attacks and eventually we switch off and miss on many other true stories that are happening in response to such sad news.

You see since the horrors on Manchester there have been many uplifting, amazing and inspiring stories coming from Manchester itself! You very likely would have missed on most of these humble headlines but i present to you my selected top 10 stories to restore your faith in humanity post Manchester. Enjoy!

1.  £5 million raised for Manchester bombing victims in just three days

A fundraising appeal for the victims of the Manchester terrorist atrocity has raised more than £5 million in just three days.

2. The English Defence League have their rally and protest shut down by locals

Mancunians were quick to condemn a group of English Defence League protesters following the deadly explosion

ariana-grande

Ariana Grande has offered to pay for the funerals of all the victims.

3. Singer Ariana Grande made the generous offer to pay for the funerals of all victims

Ariana Grande has reportedly offered to pay for the funerals of the 22 people who tragically lost their lives when a suspected terrorist attack took place after her concert in Manchester.

4. Homeless hero awarded free rent after saving children following Manchester attack

A homeless man who frantically pulled nails and glass from injured people’s eyes during the aftermath of the Manchester bombing has been awarded a place to live for his bravery.

40BF5D6200000578-4546604-image-a-59_1495834641887

The tragedy exposed beautiful friendships

5. An unexpected & deep friendship is revealed between a Muslim man and Jewish woman.

It was the photo that touched Britain, a Jewish woman and a Muslim man united in grief. The story of their 10-year friendship will restore your faith in humanity

6.  Manchester attack: The Blood bank is ‘full to the rafters’

Blood banks in the UK have received so many donations for victims of Monday’s Manchester attack they already have met their goals.

manchester-1495554994

Taxi drivers offered free lifts during and after the tragedy.

7.  Generous locals offer concert goers lifts home, free taxis and rooms for the night

Generous Mancunians are offering people who were at the Ariana Grande gig either accommodation or a lift home in a taxi – while others are simply offering a cup of tea and a hug.

8. A simple Muslim social experiment in Manchester reveals a united community

A young Muslim man is going viral tonight with a moving video about how he trusted strangers – and asked them to trust him. The response is truly something wonderful.

9. Great Manchester Run: Thousands take part amid heightened security

Tens of thousands of runners pounded the streets during an emotional occasion for Manchester. The latest large-scale event to take place since Monday’s suicide bombing.

_96252556_38577f38-52c3-4cd1-9b31-fcb1031a031a

Despite tension- thousands showed up for the Manchester Marathon.

I hope these nine stories made you realize that beneath the ugly surface of terrorism there will always shine bright a common humanity that we all share. In the face of tragedy we come together and we never let hate win, if only the media used all of these actions as stories worthy of a lengthy spotlight.

Peace, Salam
-R

As i was working out at the gym today the News Screens flashed at me from all main Australian Broadcasters. It revealed two Muslim women from the group called “Hizb Ut Tahrir” having a discussion about if and how it is justified for a man to physically hit his wife or not. In the video the two women talk about different interpretations of a certain verse in the Qur’an and they take out a Siwak (toothbrush) and tap each other with it to indicate this is the “beating” that is accepted, though not encouraged according to some Islamic opinions.

The video made all mainstream news and as i was working out i did indeed shake my head at this moment because it seems that Muslims are often the ones that shoot themselves in the foot by having such discussions and leaving the grounds of interpretation open far and wide.

Yet in a way, it’s actually good that this video was released and the Media published it because, let’s face it, we as Muslims and Islam as a faith already have a deplorable reputation and that bar could barely be raised any lower sadly, but at the same time it has opened up a discussion and dialogue about a huge problem, not necessarily in the Muslim community but in the Australian community at large, and that is domestic violence.

3F323B8200000578-4406670-Muslim_men_are_allowed_to_hit_their_wives_if_they_disobey_them_a-a-1_1492033993005

The video in question of two women in Australia discussing if wife beating is permissible in Islam.

Now theologically, without a shadow of a doubt, beating your wife, or in fact anyone for that matter is absolutely unacceptable and a widely condemned action from an Islamic standpoint and this is the important crux of the discussion because all we are seeing right now are superficial opinions and snippets of dialogues that scrape the surface of this troubling detail.

What we need to do, or i need to do for that matter, is get to the core of the matter and we must examine, if indeed this action of “wife beating” is an accepted practice of Islam- the religion- and if i can convince you that it is not, then we can clearly make a distinction on whether or not this person is acting in accordance of not only the laws of his religion but also the laws of the land that he lives in and in this case we’re talking about Australia.

Now let us start with the verse in Question, which is found in the Qur’an. Chapter 4, verse 34.  “Men  are the supporters  of  women   by  what Allah has  given  one  over  the  other  and what   they  spend  from  their  wealth.  So  righteous   women  are  obedient,  guarding  in absence what Allah would  have  them  guard.  But those from  whom you  fear  rebellion  –   advise  them;  forsake  them  in  bed;  and (finally) strike  them.  But   if  they  heed to you  ,  seek no  means  against  them.   Indeed, Allah is  ever  Exalted  and  Grand.

The verse in question from its origins has been open to much interpretation, confusion and dissension upon Islamic scholars and believers alike, yet this verse as a standalone doesn’t carry with it enough information on whether this language is that of symbolism or one of absolute literal instruction. The Hadith literature that at times further clarifies some of the more ambiguous verses of the Qur’an can shed more light on certain topics and this topic of “wife beating” is widely covered.

5241940953_d6f9d00078

Does the Qur’an and Islamic literature really indicate to beat your wives?

What we now need to do is observe if the founder of Islam, the Prophet of Islam, Muhammad (pbuh) followed the above instructions literally, did he hit his wives? Did he endorse hitting women? If he is a role model on how a man should treat his wife and if he was the living, breathing and walking Qur’an – we must then assume that if the above verse was literal, that he would then indeed beat his wives.

Our first piece of evidence comes from one of Muhammads wives, her name was Aisha. This woman later came to be a massive collector of Hadiths (sayings of Muhammad) that have been preserved for the last 1300 years. In one Hadith that is actually rarely cited we see something that is very clear cut and absolute. She states in the Hadith Below:

Aisha reported: The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, did not strike a servant or a woman, and he never struck anything with his hand.

Source: Ṣaḥīḥ Muslim 2328, 

Not only that, Muhammad himself convinced a woman not to marry a man because he had a reputation of beating women. She had three men make proposals to her and Muhammad helped her measure up who would be the most suitable. One man was poor, the other was a wife beater and the third was pious. It was stated:

Allah’s Messenger said: So far as Mu’awiya is concerned, he is a poor man without any property. So far as Abu Jahm is concerned, he is a beater of women, but take for marriage instead Usama b. Zaid. (The Pious man)

Source: Muslim, Book 009, Number 3526:

When a companion of Muhammad approached him and asked how he should treat his wife, Muhammad responded with a very simple and clear instruction.

I went to the Apostle of Allah and asked him: What do you say (command) about our wives? He replied: Give them food what you have for yourself, and clothe them by which you clothe yourself, and do not beat them, and do not revile them.

Source: Abu Dawud, Book 11, Number 2139:

Yet one of the greatest evidences that beating is clearly not allowed or mandated in Islam is a historical event that occurred with Muhammad and his wives. There was a situation that ensued where Muhammad was dissatisfied with his wives, they were charged with jealousy amongst each other and conspired against their husband in order to “get even” about certain woes they felt in regards to their relationship. Clearly, if Muhammad had the green light in his book to “beat” his wives for “disobedience” then this would have been the perfect opportunity for him to recite this verse and then get physical!

Yet this never happened. This particular event was called the “Incident of I’la”.

Thereupon, he vowed that he would keep away from his wives for a month in order to show them that the worldly life was unimportant for him, to teach them a lesson, to decrease the jealousy among them and to measure their love of and loyalty to him.

After this vow, he started to live in the arbor called Mashraba. This was a small humble room with a straw bed, a pillow stuffed with bark and his food items were barley and water. His companions were convinced he had divorced his wives and they wept at his poor form while indicating the high figures of Persia and Rome lived like Kings.

Yet this was his way of dealing with supposed “disobedient” wives. He had already advised them and spoken to them, he then separated himself from their beds for an entire month and he did not lay a single hand on them before, during or after this event.

Source: Bukhari, Volume 7, Book 63, Narration 212

domestic-violence

In Australia 56 women a year are killed in domestic violence disputes.

So given the above information we can clearly see something is amiss. If the Prophet of Islam and the verbal communicator of the Qur’an never beat his wives, then how is it possible that this verse can be taken literally? This is why a Muslim man who intends on following their Prophet in his treatment to his wives should live by his ideals, which was NOT to beat them- ever! Muslim men that use this verse in their holy book to legitimize them beating their spouses are not only cowards, they have a clear and negligible misunderstanding of their own faith and their own Messenger.

Not only is this abhorrent and debasing action clearly unacceptable within the context of religion, it is clearly unacceptable within the society of which we live in. In Australia domestic violence is a major issue. According to the Domestic Violence Prevention Centre :

“On average at least one woman a week is killed by a partner or former partner in Australia. One in three Australian women has experienced physical violence since the age of 15.”

These statistics are alarming, it indicates that in Australia alone 56 women are KILLED in domestic violence incidents yearly and a staggering one in three women has experienced physical violence from the age of 15. That is approximately 4.5 million Australian women.! 

So let us not pretend this is a “Muslim issue” and let’s not make it a Muslim issue as the media seems to be stipulating that domestic violence is an ESPECIALLY Muslim problem, it most definitely is not and the majority of the domestic violence cases in Australia are not being conducted by men reading Quran 4:34.

In Australia it is illegal to beat your wife, period. It is a highly intolerable action that should be dealt with in accordance to the law, yes the Australian law. Protections are already in place for women that encounter domestic violence encounters and they should utilize them, whether they are Muslim or not.

Muslim women that are dealing with abusive husbands should remind them of the examples above, inform them that their treatment against you is not in accordance to the Messenger of Allah and make it clear that if they are believers and want to replicate Muhammads treatment of their wives to their own lives that they should not, and cannot beat you!

I hope you have read this article and gained a better understanding on how and why this problem exists not only Worldwide but also within the Muslim world. All of my sources are Authentic Islamic sources that are verified and accepted by all mainstream scholars of Islam. I ask my fellow Muslims to please discuss this situation while the heat is still on.

People are on TV boasting about wife beating and making excuses on how some elements of wife beating are okay and it clearly enables others to navigate their way through to domestic violence when all of my examples show, without a shadow of a doubt, in clear language that Muhammad never hit his wives.

Today is our day to speak out and highlight to the media, to the wider general Australian public AND to fellow Muslims that we do not accept wife beating in our theology, hence in our lives. We reject it and we are law abiding citizens that stand by the laws of our land and our religion.

Peace and blessings be upon you.

Ramey