Friday, May 20, 2011

Sharia is already here

The question of sharia is a humorous one albeit taken seriously by some Australians and even the Attorney General.

Recent calls for sharia law in Australia are unfounded and irrational.
The problem is people do not even understand what sharia is and yet they begin fearing it and condemning it without justification.

Sharia is an aspect of a Muslim’s life which binds him or her under ethical and moral values. The commonly known conception of Sharia is that of Sharia law which can only exist if there is a predominantly Muslim society and that the government is Muslim.

The misconception about sharia law stems from the out-dated information and propaganda that intimates that sharia equates to corporal punishment and such punishments like stoning and whipping. These are medieval practices which are not used today.

Sharia is practiced in Australia everyday. I go to the mosque on Fridays, this is sharia, it does not impact on others. When Muslim gets married they go through both the Islamic rituals and the legal ceremony through a marriage celebrant. It is exactly the same for Christians who get married in a church or Jews who do so in a synagogue. It is the same for divorce, one does both the legal process and the religious process. Just as Catholics will divorce through the legal system and annul the marriage through the church as well. People don’t understand that sharia is a personal aspect of one’s faith and it is not a system of law.

Muslims in Australia do not want sharia in this country, we already have sharia practiced on a personal level. This nation is a secular nation. It protects religious rights and promotes religious freedoms. It would be highly impractical to implement sharia in Australia, and no one wants to any way.

It would be nice if we could all just wake up and smell the coffee, take a breath and relax. Sharia is already here, it has been for 150 years (with the first Afghan Muslim camel drivers), so why are we worried!

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