Makassan contact with Australia Indonesian Muslims trepangers from the southwest corner of Sulawesi visited the coast of northern Australia, "from at least the eighteenth century"  to collect and process trepanga marine invertebrate prized for its culinary and medicinal values in Chinese markets. Remnants of their influence can be seen in the culture of some of the northern Aboriginal peoples. Regina Ganter, an associate professor at Griffith Universitysays, "Staying on the safe grounds of historical method
Messenger Muslim conversion is growing in Indigenous communities. In the national censusIndigenous people identified as Muslim. This recent rise in conversions among Indigenous Australians may seem to be a political gesture. But unknown to many is the long history between Aboriginal people and Islamic culture and religion.
Three centuries of history Indigenous and Muslim communities have traded, socialised and intermarried in Australia for three centuries. From the early s, Muslim fishermen from Indonesia made annual voyages to the north and northwestern Australian coast in search of sea slugs trepang.
The trade that developed included material goods, but the visitors also left a lasting religious legacy.
Recent research confirms the existence of Islamic motifs in some north Australian Aboriginal mythology and ritual. An Aboriginal woman at Oodnadatta, South Auratlia, with a camel. Islam Dreaming The first Muslims to settle permanently in Australia were the cameleers, mainly from Afghanistan.
Between the s and s, the Muslim camelmen worked the inland tracks and developed relationships with local Aboriginal people. Intermarriage was common and there are Aboriginal families with surnames including Khan, Sultan, Mahomed and Akbar.
From the mids, Muslim Malays came to north Australia as indentured labourers in the pearl-shelling industry. They, too, formed longstanding relationships with the Indigenous people they met. A significant number married local Aboriginal women, and today there are many Aboriginal-Malay people in the top end of Australia.
A culture in common My research has found a broad spectrum of Indigenous identification with Islam. It ranges from those who have Afghan and Malay Muslim ancestors, but are not practising Muslims, to those who have no Muslim ancestors, but are strict adherents of the faith.
The Indigenous Muslims I met perceive a neat cultural fit between their traditional Indigenous beliefs and the teachings of Islam. Many hold that in embracing Islam they are simultaneously going back to their Indigenous roots.
They find cultural parallels in the shared practices of male circumcision, arranged marriages, polygyny a form of marriage in which a man has more than one wifeand the fact that men are usually older than their wives in both Islamic and traditional Indigenous societies.
Others commented on the similar attitudes that Muslims and Indigenous people have towards the environment. Change what you do, not who you are Indigenous Muslims are also attracted to Islam because it does not subscribe to the kind of mono-culturalism Christian missionaries imposed on Aboriginal people.
These racial and cultural differences, far from being wrong, are a sign from God. It recognises we belong to different tribes and nations. But there are also gender-specific reasons why Islam appeals to Indigenous women and men.‘The Muslim community in Australia is most supportive of Aboriginal reconciliation on spiritual, moral, humanitarian and prudential pragmatic ground’ is a claim of Islamic assistance in the process of reconciliation.
Many faiths like Islam, Buddhism and Hinduism have also assisted in the process of reconciliation.
Jul 19, · Aboriginal activist Uncle Raymond talks about the untold historical relation between Aboriginal and Islamic communities in the town of Marree, South Australia.
In the overall Muslim population in Australia had grown from , or % of the general Australian population in , to , or % in The growth of Muslim population at this time was recorded as % compared to % for the general Australian population.
Others less known to the non-Indigenous community such as the members of the Aboriginal Catholic Mission, the Aboriginal Muslim members of the Lakemba mosque in Sydney, and those who have converted to Islam while incarcerated, are all articulating in formal and informal ways the development of their cultural and religious identities.
Aboriginal peoples and third, systemic marginalisation wherein Indigenous and Muslim communities were thrown together because of white racism and discriminatory legislation.
There was a considerable degree of cultural convergence or overlap between the Muslim camel drivers and the Aboriginal communities they encountered. After all, there was a considerable degree of cultural convergence or overlap between the Muslim camel drivers and the Aboriginal communities they encountered.
Like their Indigenous counterparts, ‘Afghan’ cameleers were peripatetic. They practised nomadism within discrete areas and were simultaneously both ‘fixed’ and mobile.