As part of MWA’s commitment to our values, including the values of authenticity and trust, and as 2022 continues more than twenty years of Reconciliation Australia and almost three decades of Australia’s formal reconciliation process MWA reaffirms our own commitment to reconciliation.
At MWA, we have been constantly reflecting upon our relations with Australia’s First Nation peoples and being reminded of Australia’s’ true history. In doing so, we should recognise the meaning of Reconciliation and how we, as individuals and as a community, can make a difference.
For this reason, we have been active in the development of MWA’s Reconciliation Plan, and have been guided by our Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander brothers and sisters in this.
Throughout this learning journey, we have learnt many things along the way, and we look forward to sharing our experiences with the community. To get started, we would like to share a few important ideas:
Reconciliation asks all Australians to consider and take action to build positive relationships with one another.
To reach true Reconciliation, all Australians must consider the history and culture of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. This is both pre and post colonisation history. Without this consideration the Reconciliation journey will not progress.
- To understand Reconciliation, we must first identify its fundamental requirement, which is to come together and strengthen relationships between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and non-Indigenous peoples.
- This involves considering and understanding the history and culture of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, while also implementing practical approaches.
- We need to seek comprehension of the traumatic experiences faced by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and the impact of these experiences on their lives, culture, family, and spirituality.
- This means embarking on a learning and cultural awareness journey, guided by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples themselves.
- Only once we fully realise Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples’ history, our shared history as Australians, and its’ daily manifestations in the present can we form and strengthen positive relationships with one another and work towards meaningful Reconciliation.
Reconciliation is not a one-off encounter, rather it is an ongoing journey, comprising of small, but consistent steps in appreciating the importance of equity, equality, unity and self-determination. Achieving social justice is the ultimate goal.
Although it takes time and great effort, Islam establishes through commandments and guidance by the Prophets as well as Caliphs that we should constantly strive to protect the rights of others. This notion is even further embedded into the roots of Islam as every Muslim is obliged to not only accept and recognise human rights, but to also ensure these rights are enforced.
The obligations of Muslims to act honestly, fairly and with moral excellence highlights the importance of Reconciliation in Islam and the significance of righteous and sincere action based on wisdom.
Muslim communities and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities have many shared experiences and values steeped in spiritual understanding.
We look forward to continuing this journey proactively as we launch and implement MWA’s Reconciliation Action Plan. We have been active in the development of MWA’s Reconciliation Plan for over a year, and we are sincerely grateful and indebted to the guides and teachers God has sent our way bringing years of work to fruition.