Ecologically speaking Australia is identified as one of the world’s 17 “megadiverse” countries. Together, these 17 countries harbour more than 70% of the Earth’s species.
By analogy with biodiversity, which is thought to be essential to the long-term survival of life on earth, it can be argued that cultural diversity may be vital for the long-term survival of humanity. The General Conference of UNESCO took this position in 2001, asserting that "...cultural diversity is as necessary for humankind as biodiversity is for nature".
For 50000 years the people of this place have enjoyed a human culture of incredible diversity with an amazing variety of languages, cultural traditions, foundational myths, stories and music.
By valuing indigenous culture and wisdom, and by welcoming refugees and immigrants, we enable the kind of social and cultural diversity that leads to a healthy and life-giving community.
This is the Australian way of life and it has, for 50000 years, been typified by healthy ecological, social and cultural diversity. Sadly the darkest moments in our story are when that natural diversity has been suppressed, denied or subjugated, becoming a place where not every one belonged.
I welcome the contribution that the Muslim Community makes to the rich tapestry of Australian life. I pray the Ramadan has been a time of deep faith experience and the Eid will bring joyful celebration.
The Venerable Rod Bower
Anglican Parish of Gosford