What’s something that you are passionate about?
I suppose getting people to understand about who I am as a Muslim and when I’m known as a Muslim, people think yknow, you’re a terrorist. But it’s not so, everyone’s an individual and I am an individual, that’s how I feel.
What is a significant achievement of yours?
For me as a Torres Strait Islander and a Muslim, my achievement was going to the Kaaba [building at the center of Islam’s most sacred mosque), and to Mecca, to do my Hajj [pilgrimage] and to see the Kaaba for the first time. My reaction, my goodness I’m here! I pray 5 times a day and I’m here! Glorious! Something that no one can take away from me.
Who is your role model?
My role model was my mum. Without my mum I wouldn’t be the person I am today. My background, we were just average normal islanders. But she taught me well, and whatever she taught me I am very rich and blessed with it.
What would people be surprised to know about you?
They’d be surprised I am Muslim but I’m actually an Aboriginal Torres Strait Islander. I would say that’s the first reaction, and I do speak English.
What’s something that has changed your life?
Going to Hajj, that changed my life. Seeing so many millions of people, circumambulate around the Kaaba. That was the most joyous part of my life for me.
Everything was powerful, the serenity when we went up to Mount Arafat, you couldn’t hear a cry, everything was just so still, you couldn’t hear a pin dropping. At that time when I went, there was one million people. One million.
What role do your beliefs play in your life?
Just belief in the wonders of god, and just being a Muslim. And following the duties that I’m supposed to fulfil, the 5 duties, the 5 pillars of Islam.
What’s your best advice for others?
For me be kind to eachother. And I think we should get to know eachother. We should invite eachother into our homes and have a meal. Because I feel that a meal brings everyone together, and sharing. And I hope my granddaughters do that.
We should always stop and say hello, hello to anyone in the street. That’s a kind word, hello.
Is there anything else you would like to share?
I think we should all try to live together, because god created us, so that we go into the world and the path he chose for us. We should want to get to know each other.