By Kuranda Seyit, executive director of Forum on Australia's Islamic Relations
The Prophet Muhammad, may peace and blessings be upon him, said, “And know that victory comes with patience, relief with affliction, and hardship with ease”.
When we look back at this past year, there have been some extraordinary events that have afflicted our community.
The bushfires placed so many people in hardship and then we were hit with the virus and this placed many more Victorians in hard times.
Losing jobs or businesses, feeling depressed or hopeless, and losing loved ones.
For us Victorians and more specifically those in the South East Melbourne area, we have been very fortunate that the virus has not spread widely, except for a few small clusters.
In Islam we are taught this very simple lesson of faith: when someone is suffering, the highest form of faith is to help through your actions.
But if we cannot do anything directly to help them, then we should do it with our words and if that is not possible then the least form of faith is through our hearts and prayers.
The power of prayer is often understated and collective prayer is even more powerful.
As Victorians, we come together from all walks of life, with varying faiths and world-views, but the universal message, is that we are one humanity and together we will prevail.
In the words of the great Islamic mystic and poet, Mevlana Rumi: “You’ve seen my descent. Now watch my rising!”