1st Session, 42nd Parliament,

Volume 150, Issue 44

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

The Honourable George J. Furey, Speaker

Ramadan

Hon. Mobina S. B. Jaffer: Honourable senators, I too rise to speak on Ramadan.

Yesterday marked the first day of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan. It was during this auspicious month that the Holy Quran was first revealed to the Holy Prophet Muhammad. May peace be upon him.

As a proud Ismaili-Muslim Canadian senator, I’m honoured to be marking and celebrating this auspicious occasion with my fellow Canadians and with my Muslim brothers and sisters in Canada and around the world.

During Ramadan, over 1.5 billion Muslims worldwide will abstain from food and drink from dawn to dusk as part of the practice of their faith.

Honourable senators, Ramadan, however, is not simply a time when Muslims abstain from food and drink. For Muslims worldwide, Ramadan is also a time for spiritual reflection, self-improvement, forgiveness and charity.

For Canadian Muslims observing this month, Ramadan can mean abstaining from food and drink for up to 18 hours per day. I know that I speak on behalf of all Canadian Muslims when I say that Canada’s Muslim community truly cherishes the constitutional right bestowed upon all Canadians to practise their faith freely, free from interference and discrimination, and in a spirit of mutual respect.

Indeed, it is Canada’s unwavering commitment to this value of pluralism and Canada’s value for its diversity which makes Canada such an incredible nation.

Honourable senators, I also want to reach out today to my Muslim brothers and sisters and to Muslims around the world and to humbly and respectfully state that most of the conflicts taking place in the world today are in Muslim countries. So I respectfully ask all Muslims, including myself, to reflect on the real message of the Holy Quran and Ramadan. Our actions today have the potential to hurt or help us, our children, our grandchildren and, most importantly, our great-grandchildren.

Honourable senators, I ask all Muslims, especially in conflict zones, to say that the time to act is now. I give all of you my commitment to help stop the conflict. I hope I can count on yours.

Ramadan Mubarak. Thank you.

 

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