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Upcoming Online Meet-ups and Support Group Sessions

Hi!

I hope you are doing well and staying safe during these terrible times.

Please be advised that much of CEMB’s meetings and support group sessions will now be online until further notice. You can see our upcoming events here.

UPCOMING ONLINE MEET-UPS, 7:00-7:45pm London time

April 21 with Youtuber and Comedian Veedu Vidz on To Laugh is to Live!

May 19 with Lawyer Ana Gonzalez on Apostasy and Asylum

6th June meet-up with playwright Mwhamadu Kuusi on exploring stories by and about ex-Muslims

21 July with CEMB Spokesperson Jimmy Bangash on LGBT Rights and Apostasy

More sessions will be added to the website including a session on Internet Safety.

To join any of the meet-ups, please RSVP by sending your email to hello@ex-muslim.org.uk. We will then email you the address of the meet-up on the day of the event. The events are open to the public.

ONLINE SUPPORT GROUP

If you would like to continue to attend a support group session, please join Counselling Psychologist Savin Bapir-Tardy for the next session to be held on 7 May. The Zoom private room address will be sent to those who pre-register for the support group session.

Because the sessions are now online, Birmingham and London support groups members can join the same online session. However, since Savin can only facilitate groups of 5, please RSVP so we can ensure that there are enough group sessions on the day for all those who wish to join.  RSVP to hello@ex-muslim.org.uk.

SHUN SHUNNING

Please continue to help CEMB call for an end to shunning via social media. We hope to raise awareness of how shunning is abusive, akin to long-term psychological torture as well as a form of social death penalty and needs to stop. You can find out more about our campaign here.

SUPPORT US

Please continue supporting our work by donating via our website or helping us establish to first ex-Muslim refuge in the world.

Take care and best wishes

Maryam

Maryam Namazie
CEMB Spokesperson
www.ex-muslim.org.uk

#ShunShunning

On the second International Atheist Day, 23 March 2020, which was established in 2019 by a number of ex-Muslim and atheist organisations,  we call on families, communities and societies to end the heinous practice of shunning atheists, ex-Muslims and freethinkers.

Shunning is akin to long-term psychological torture and a form of social death penalty. See counselling psychologist Savin Bapir-Tardy’s piece on its adverse effects on those who are shunned.

A recent panel discussion on Apostasy, Shunning and Survival, highlights why we must Shun Shunning!

The panel discussion is with Actress Nazmiye Oral, Youtuber Fay Rahman, Journalist Khadija Khan, Student Activist Saff Khalique, Clinical Psychologist Savin Bapir-Tardy and Født Fri (Born Free) Foundation Director Shabana Rehman and chaired by CEMB Spokesperson Maryam Namazie. Also listen to Elewisa Mwhamadu Kuusi’s poem on this important issue. The event was MCed by Nahla Mahmoud.

Please note that all upcoming CEMB events and meetings have been cancelled since early March in order to stop the spread of the Coronavirus.

Please keep safe and help us highlight, expose and shun shunning via social media platforms.

#ShunningIsTorture

#ShunningIsAbuse

#LifeAfterShunning

#ShunnedBecause

#ShunningIsTorture

طرد_کردن_شکنجه_است#

العزل_تعذيب#

#Dışlamakİşkencedir

لاتعلُّقی کرنا اذیت ناک ہے#

 

#ShunningIsAbuse

طرد_کردن_خوار_کردن_است#

#Dışlamakİstismardır

العزل_إعتداء_عاطفي#

لاتعلُّقیکےبعدزندگیپہپڑنےوالے_اثرات#

 

#LifeAfterShunning

زندگی_بعد_از_طرد_شدن#

#DışlandıktanSonrakiYaşam

الحياة_بعد_العزل#

لاتعلُّق کیونکہ۔#

 

#ShunnedBecause

چرا_طرد_شدم#

#DışlandımÇünkü

هجروني_لأنني#

لاتعلُّقی_ذہنی_اذیت_ہے#

Apostasy, Shunning and Survival Event extraordinary and inspiring

For #InternationalWomenDay2020, Council of Ex-Muslims of Britain and Born Free held a sold-out event on Apostasy, Shunning & Survival. It was an extraordinary and inspiring evening.

The event was opened by MC Nahla Mahmoud and began with a screening of the stunning film: “No Longer Without You”, a documentary about a searing conversation about parenthood, tradition, religion, sex, and independence between a free-spirited daughter, Nazmiye Oral and her traditional Muslim mother, Havva in the intimate circle of a living room in front of their family following several public performances.

This was followed by a panel discussion with Actress Nazmiye Oral, Youtuber Fay Rahman, Journalist Khadija Khan, Student Activist Saff Khalique, Clinical Psychologist Savin Bapir-Tardy and Født Fri (Born Free) Foundation Director Shabana Rehman. Chair: CEMB Spokesperson Maryam Namazie.

The evening ended with a poem by Playwright and Poet Elewisa Mwhamadu Kuusi.

The speakers highlighted the adverse effects of shunning and called for an end to shunning and for all to #ShunShunning.

No Longer Without You: Film, Discussion and Poetry on Apostasy, Shunning and Survival

Join Council of Ex-Muslims of Britain (CEMB) and Født Fri (Born Free) Foundation for an evening of Film, Discussion and Poetry to mark 8 March, International Women’s Day

Sunday 8 March 2020, 5:30pm for 6:00pm start until 9:00pm

Central London

Tickets Available Now: £7 waged; £5 unwaged, including students and pensioners. No tickets sold at door.

 

Ticket holders will be sent London venue details closer to the event. Venue is in Clerkenwell and is walking distance from Farringdon Station.

UK FILM SCREENING: “No Longer Without You”

‘I will not do what you say. I’ll follow my own path, but I will not let myself be cast out. I will be different, but No Longer Without You.’

“No Longer Without You” is a documentary about a searing conversation about parenthood, tradition, religion, sex, and independence between a free-spirited daughter, Nazmiye Oral and her traditional Muslim mother, Havva in the intimate circle of a living room in front of their family following several public performances.

“How can I walk away when my legs are not my own? And how do I pave my path back? Because my place within the family is my right.”

The film screening will be followed by POETRY by Playwright and Poet Elewisa Mwhamadu Kuusi and A PANEL DISCUSSION ON APOSTASY, SHUNNING AND SURVIVAL with Actress Nazmiye Oral, Youtuber Fay Rahman, Journalist Khadija Khan, Student Activist Saff Khalique, Clinical Psychologist Savin Bapir-Tardy and Født Fri (Born Free) Foundation Director Shabana Rehman. Chair: CEMB Spokesperson Maryam Namazie. The event will be MCed by Nahla Mahmoud. There will also be a drinks reception.

BIOGRAPHIES

NAZMIYE ORAL is an actress, writer, columnist and TV presenter. She began her acting career in the 1990s in the Netherlands with series like Baantjer, Combat, Oppassen! and Westenwind. She also performed in De Gesluierde Monologen, The SuburbSafari and in No Longer Without You, a play she wrote herself. The play was selected for the Holland Festival and Crossing the Line Festival in New York and has also been made into a documentary. Nazmiye has performed in television productions like A’dam E.V.A., Undercover, Moordvrouw and Oh Mijn Hemel, starred in the series Icarus: Zorgondernemer and In Vrijheid by Floor van der Meulen for which she was awarded Best Actress at the Netherlands Film Festival and at the Lucania Film Festival. In 2011 her debut novel ‘Zehra’ was released, for which she was nominated for the E. du Perron prize. She co-founded the Zina Foundation in 2003, a theatre initiative that travels through different neighbourhoods in the Netherlands using local stories.

ELEWISA MWHAMADU KUUSI is a British-born writer, playwright, actor and spoken word artist. Being of Jamaican parentage and born into Islam has given him a niche yet broad and ever-broadening perspective on life and a yearning to expose the flaws, discrepancies and lies of mainstream paradigms. While his works do not adhere to any particular genre, he does like to tell stories and messages that would normally be ignored or left unknown. Leaving Islam in 2013 and identifying as atheist since 2019 has made his truth-seeking disposition all the stronger. He is published in the anthology ‘100 Years Unheard’ (2018), has written and performed in his own stage play ‘Love Hurts’ (2016-17), has lectured on the subject ‘What is a Man? What is a Black Man?’ for the Association of Black Humanists (2018) and West London Humanists (2019), and has performed in various stage plays throughout London since 2012.

FAY RAHMAN is a British-Bangladeshi ex-Muslim atheist Youtuber. Fay grew up in the UK, in a non-practicing Muslim family. Through Islamic schooling she joined the Tableeghi Jamaat and then later adopted the even more conservative Salafi practice of Islam with the encouragement of her father and later her extended family. Fay left Islam in secret in February 2017 and openly in October 2018 – avoiding an arranged marriage, surviving an attempt on her life and causing her family to disown her. Fay collaborates with Faith2Faithless, the Council of Ex-Muslims of Britain and Faithless Hijabi for activism in free-speech, women’s rights and religious freedom. She has an active YouTube channel where she shares her experience as a young woman who has left Islam, the challenges she faces and the inconsistencies in Islam in order to reach others who are doubting or closeted and assure them that they are not alone.

KHADIJA KHAN is a Pakistani journalist and a commentator currently based in UK. She writes about human rights, mainly women’s rights, as well as minorities, extremism and Islamism. She is an advocate for women’s rights, strongly believes that religion infringes women’s rights and Islam is no exception. She denounces the idea of Islamic feminism, since finding refuge for women’s rights under organised religion is not more than a myth. Being a humanist, she believes in tolerance and equality for all human beings. She criticizes the usage of blasphemy laws as a tool to crackdown on dissent and supports freedom of and from religion. She stresses the need of having freedom of speech to counter extremist ideologies in her write ups. She believes that freedom to challenge bad idea is the most effective way to counter extremist narratives.

MARYAM NAMAZIE is an Iranian-born writer and activist. She is the Spokesperson of One Law for All and the Council of Ex-Muslims of Britain and hosts a weekly TV programme broadcast in called Bread and Roses. She is on the International Advisory Board of the Raif Badawi Foundation for Freedom and Euromind. Maryam and CEMB were featured in a 2016 film “Islam’s Non-Believers” by Deeyah Khan. She was also a character in DV8 Physical Theatre’s “Can We Talk About This?”. She was joint winner of the 2019 Emma Humphreys Memorial Prize; awarded the 2017 Henry H. Zumach Freedom From Religious Fundamentalism award; 2016 International Secularism (Laicite) Prize from the Comité Laïcité République; Atheist of the Year by Kazimierz Lyszczynski (2014); Journalist of the Year at the Dods Women in Public Life Awards (2013); awarded the National Secular Society’s Secularist of the Year Award (2005), amongst others. The Islamic regime of Iran’s media outlets has called Namazie “immoral and corrupt.”

NAHLA MAHMOUD is an environment and human rights activist originally from Sudan. She works with a number of campaigns in the UK, including One Law for All and Secular Middle East and North Africa. She leads the Sudanese Humanists Group and is former Spokesperson for the Council of Ex-Muslims of Britain.

SAFF KHALIQUE is a British Pakistani ex-Muslim student and activist, currently studying a masters in International Journalism. Saff left Islam in May 2018 but it was not until September 2019 that she went public with her disbelief. She launched The Sinning Skeptics podcast with the aim to provide a safe space for young Ex-Muslims and Muslims to discuss, question and critique the religion they grew up in. Through her blog, The Amber Journals, she covers issues surrounding freedom of religion, politics and women’s rights, such as collecting women’s experiences with the hijab for No Hijab day. She recently joined the Index on Censorship’s Youth Advisory Board, in which she aims to shed light on repressive apostasy and blasphemy laws across the globe and how this can impact the state’s control of its media and peoples.

SAVIN BAPIR-TARDY is a Lecturer in Psychology at the University of West London. Bapir-Tardy conducted her doctoral research at City University into how traumatic events are experienced. She has worked with adolescents, adults and older adults in a variety of mental health settings. She worked for 8 years as a Counselling Psychologist at the Iranian and Kurdish Women’s Rights Organisation (IKWRO) providing psychological therapy to women who have experienced “honour” based violence, forced marriage, domestic violence and female genital mutilation. Bapir-Tardy also provided training to professionals in mainstream mental health services on “honour” based violence, forced marriage and female genital mutilation.

SHABANA REHMAN is Director of Født Fri (Born Free) Foundation and a performance artist and human and animal rights advocate. She is Norwegian with Pakistani descent. Shabana entered the stage in Oslo, Norway in 2000. In the following years, she quickly built a reputation for groundbreaking and iconoclastic comedy. Her controversial and popular comedy style along with public political stunts like Mullah-Lifting, and bodypainted with Norwegian flag as a performance artist, have given her a unique position in her native Norway. Among substantial international press cover, she has been featured both by The New York Times and by Times Magazine. In addition to her prolific comedy career, Shabana is a highly respected columnist, satirist, and public speaker in Scandinavia and the Scandinavian community in USA. She regularly writes for major newspaper and magazines in the region. A frequent participant and contributor in talk shows and public debates, she is among the most respected celebrities in Norway. Shabana has received several awards for her writing and fearless comedy. She had played her shows in several countries, among them Canada, USA, Denmark, Iceland, Faroe Islands and Germany. She recently founded the Secular Feminist Front.

For more information, contact m.namazie@ex-muslim.org.uk or visit www.ex-muslim.org.uk.

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