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This group is about Muslims and their civic responsibilities, and about creating a religious, social and civic space for themselves in the community of faiths.
This site is for all Muslims, and most are Moderate Muslims. More info on right panel.

Saturday, May 23, 2015

Was Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) a prejudiced man?

Prophet Muhammad Prejudiced | World Muslim Congress 
Absolutely not, God himself called him Rahmatul Aalameen- a Mercy to the Universe (Life and Environment). He did not have a bone of prejudice in him. There is no way, absolutely no way he could be prejudiced towards Jews, Christians, Pagans and others.

Even though a handful of big name Muslim Scholars from the past have painted him as biased towards fellow beings, he was not!  Prophet was an example of love and mercy. We have to be free from prejudice and be a Rahmat to fellow beings.

As Muslims we have to become Amins of the world, and learn about each other (49:13), we have an opportunity to shape a better world. For the last 20 years, we have been writing a series of articles called "
Festivals of the World" where we write the essence of each major religious festival without bias or prejudice. Many a Muslims believe and have great relationships with fellow humans from Atheist to Zoroastrians and every one in between.  The more we know about each other, the lesser the conflicts we will have and a secure world for everyone will evolve. 

As a follower of the Prophet, when I kiss the Torah and show reverence to God's words like he did, I don't become a Jew, when I stand up for the funeral of a Hindu, I don't become a Hindu... Quran is one of the greatest books of guidance for humanity and that is why the message is consistently universal... think about it! Quran is not for Muslims

Well, if you wish to learn about festivals of the world, I will be happy to share - and it comes with every one's festival or commemoration, from within and with everyone. You can always place the name of the festival with my name- and you will get the info from Google - example - Janmashtami Mike Ghouse, from now on it will be the name of the festival and Pluralism with it as we are building team of all religious people to learn and share. 

Here is info about Shavuot by Rabbi David Mark,  if you like it, please share it. If we want a better world, we have to be a part of it, Prophet has shown the way, let's not forget that.  If you don't like to learn about other people and their festivals and commemorations, please let me, I will take you off the list. 

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/PluralismCenter/

Monday, May 18, 2015

Al-Baghdadi, you are dead wrong, you against all Muslims now


Mike Ghouse, President

America Together FoundationDallas, TX | Washington DC
(214) 325-1916- talk/text

Muslims Challenge Al-Baghdadi’s Lunatic Message

Dallas, Texas – May 18, 2015. Al-Baghdadi, the self proclaimed Caliph of ISIL released an audio message on May 14, misrepresenting the values dearly held by millions of Muslims for fourteen centuries.  He said, "Islam was never a religion of peace. Islam is the religion of fighting” and added, “It is the war of Muslims against infidels."

Mike Ghouse, President of America Together Foundation said, “Al-Baghdadi has angered the entire Muslim world, no one thought he would stoop that low to flip the entire religion to suit crimes against Muslims and non-Muslims alike.  My concern is not only his lunatic statement, as many such men have come and gone, but it is the joy expressed by the war mongers that concerns me. It is, as if Baghdadi has reaffirmed their (false) belief about Islam, and now they can continue to malign Islam.”

We are just coming out of the two longest wars; they not only destroyed Iraq and Afghanistan, but cost billions of dollars and affected thousands of lives here in America.  Now the war Mongers want to put boots on the ground again in the Middle East that is not acceptable. 

Al-Baghdadi is a narcissistic dude and is for himself.  The truth is Quran advocates justice with mercy.  It directs the humanity to build cohesive societies where no human has to live in apprehension or fear of the other.  A few verses are referenced below.

The entire Muslim world has condemned Al-Baghdadi,  even the rival countries like Iran and Saudi Arabia have condemned, the OIC representing all of the 57 Muslim nations, British Muslims and American Muslims have condemned it. References are given below.

I hope that we capture Al Baghdadi and his soldiers and put them on trial.  We need to demand proof from Al-Baghdadi to produce support for his claim that, “It is the war of Muslims against infidels” from the Quran.  We hope the world will see that it is neither Islam nor the Quran, it is the bad guys.  The world should not let go of this opportunity to put the ISIL ideology die its own death.  We also urge the war-mongers among us to stop looking for excuses to destroy world peace.

Mike Ghouse
(214) 325-1916

References continued at: http://americatogetherfoundation.blogspot.com/2015/05/press-release-muslims-challenge-al.html

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Muslim Condemnations  
Baghdadi may have a force of 31,500 his side, and thus far he is the only spokesperson for the group, indeed he is the driving force for this self proclaimed rulership. 
Threat Matrix reports, “Islamic State fighters in Iraq and Syria number around 20,000 to 31,500 — a figure far higher than previously estimated, the Central Intelligence Agency has said.”

Saudi Arabia: Saudi Arabia’s Highest Religious Authority:  On August 19, Al Jazeera reported that Saudi Arabia’s grand mufti, Abdulaziz al-Sheikh, the country’s top religious authority, said that terrorism is anti-Islamic and said that groups like the Islamic State which practice violence are the “number one enemy of Islam”
IranAli Shamkhani, the secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council, addressed the victories of the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS) against a fleeing Iraqi military in a meeting with Syria’s ambassador to Iran. “The expansion of terrorist elements of [ISIS] and their violent acts in Iraq was a warning for the region,” Shamkhani said. “There is a need for attention and action from governments and the international community.”
USA: On August 15, 2014, the World Muslim congress had called on Muslims to Dedicate Friday Sermons for the Safety of Christians, Yazidis, Shia and Other Minorities at Huffington post. World Muslim Congress of Dallas has urged Obama to go ahead degrade and destroy ISIS in an op-ed at Huffington Post on September 4, 2014.  Just about every American Islamic and Muslim organization has condemned it.  ING has compiled the list.

UK: Huffington Post reported, 100 Sunni and Shiite Imams from the U.K. came together to produce a video denouncing the Islamic State, releasing a statement that they wanted to “come together to emphasize the importance of unity in the UK and to decree ISIS as an illegitimate, vicious group who do not represent Islam in any way.”  
OIC - The Organization of Islamic Cooperation represents all the Muslim majority nations: The Islamic State Has “Nothing to Do with Islam,” Has Committed Crimes “That Cannot Be Tolerated.”  

Quranic Verse 

Quran remains a pristine, inclusive book of wisdom committed to building cohesive societies, where no human has to live in apprehension or fear of the other.  
Quran (55: 1-13):  God created an integrated and interconnected world in harmony and balance, and wants us to preserve and maintain that balance.

Quran; (
5:32) (Asad) “Because of this did We ordain unto the children of Israel that if anyone slays a human being-unless it be [in punishment] for murder or for spreading corruption on earth-it shall be as though he had slain all mankind; whereas, if anyone saves a life, it shall be as though he had saved the lives of all mankind.  And, indeed, there came unto themOur apostles with all evidence of the truth: yet, behold, notwithstanding all this, many of them go on committing all manner of excesses on earth

Quran: (1:1 and 114:1) From the very first verse in the first chapter to last chapter is addressed to the humanity, all the humanity.  Quran is a book of guidance for all.

Quran (49:13)
 (Asad) “O men! Behold, We have created you all out of a male and a female,  and have made you into nations and tribes, so that you might come to know one another.  Verily, the noblest of you in the sight of God is the one who is most deeply conscious of Him. Behold, God is all-knowing, all-aware.

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Sunday, May 17, 2015

Disturbing trends at AMU (Aligarh Muslim University) by Kuldip Nayar

Disturbing trends at AMU
Link: http://worldmuslimcongress.blogspot.com/2015/05/disturbing-trends-at-amu-aligarh-muslim.html

The following article by Kuldip Nayar’s  needs to be discussed and debated. Thanks to him for offering a great advice to Muslims to reflect upon, particularly the students at AMU.

My experience at AMU was different when I was there between April 6th and 9th this year, it was more uplifting and positive. Indeed, it was a joy to see the desire among students and staff – to integrate and be a part of the whole.

I just did not go to the conference; I went there to understand us, my fellow Muslims in the North and how they are doing. In the South where I am from,  I wore my clothes like everyone else, ate like everyone else and lived no differently than others outside of my home. Having Hindu friends is not a thing to talk about it, because it was the norm and a common thing. We were friends and religion was not a factor. 

The conference organized by Dr. Shaz, and supported by the VC General Shah and Brig Ali was very encouraging. It is a revival of Sir Syed’s tradition to open our horizons and learn things beyond our little secure and safe well.

My conference days were not 9-5, but 7 am to 11 pm – I was with different students and in different mini-conferences talking about – gender issues, issues of communalism, engagement, and what should we do to build a cohesive India. Not all of them were alike, and shouldn't be, a few were hung up on Sharia – and unwilling to see another point of view, it did not surprise me a bit, as we have similar attitudes here. 

It calls for basic changes in our attitudes –

1. Quran is the word of God and beyond question, we cannot argue with God nor change a single dot in it, then we will not be looking at God’s words anymore. The translations we read are subject to questioning and they are not the final word. 

2. We to question everything.  In one of the discussions on gender issues, I shared how 4:34 has been translated for centuries, even though most of did not agree with it, but did not say a word. Now, thanks to Dr. Laleh Bakhtiar she brings sensible meaning to it, which is in tune with the character of the Prophet – Mercy to mankind.  For some of the men, the earlier translations amounted to God's word, and not a man’s translation. This is an important distinction we need to remember. 

Allama Iqbal had said so well – Mazhab nahin sikhata aapas may bair rakhna. Islam is not our villain, instead it asks us to treat every human as fellow man created by God (49:13) and that we have to know each other to be called the best makhlooq.

Thanks to Kuldip for this prized suggestion. May God bless him?

Mike Ghouse
 # # #


Saturday 16 May 2015, by Kuldip Nayar

I have returned from the Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) disappointed and disturbed. I am disappointed because the students did not seem to have merged into the mainstream yet and disturbed because they were still talking in terms of religious identity.

Perhaps, it would give a vicarious satisfaction to the Muslims of having an identity of their own if the AMU is officially declared as a Muslim university. After having lost the battle in all fields, including Urdu, the Muslims do feel dejected. There is no inconsistency if a Muslim is made to feel that he has an identity of his own, but the overwhelming identity of all people living in India is that of Indians.

Aligarh is the place where Maulana Abul Kalam Azad, the eminent freedom fighter, was abused before the country’s partition. The students had found him in a train compartment. He was travelling from Delhi to Calcutta from his hometown. They took off their clothes and booed him to show all the disrespect which they could.

His fault was that he differed with the Muslim League and opposed the formation of Pakistan. He would argue that the demand had been raised on the false assumption that partition was the best way out to escape the overwhel-ming majority of Hindus. But after the formation of Pakistan, the number of Muslims in India would go down still further. On top of it, the Hindus would say: ‘You have taken your share and, therefore, go to Pakistan.’ This is precisely what happened.

Jawaharlal Nehru, India’s first Prime Minister, himself went to Connaught Circus and beat up some looters with the stick he carried. The AMU students probably did not realise that the identity on the basis of religion led to the partition of India. After the division, the same type of politics could not be repeated and the Muslims, who plugged the line of separation, would suffer. The 80 per cent of population, that of Hindus, would not brook the same old talk.

I feel that the Muslims on the whole have turned a new leaf in their life and want to be a part of the mainstream. They realise the dangers of ploughing a communal furrow. The riots between the Hindus and Muslims ultima-tely become riots between the Muslims and police, which largely has been the case.

It is, however, the mainstream which was not allowing them too much. The softHindutava appears to have come to prevail in the country. This is making the Muslims more and more scared. Talking to some of them at the Jamia Millia institution in Delhi, I found that they were scared of the rise of the Hindutva followers who cared little about their rights.

In this context I found the report by the US Congress-established panel pertinent. A bit of generalisation has reduced its utility. Otherwise, the US Commission on International Religious Freedom is justified in observing that religious minorities in India have been subjected to “violent attacks, forced conversions” and “ghar wapsi”campaigns by groups like the RSS after the assumption of power by the Narendra Modi Government.

It is unfortunate that the report has been officially rejected. The country should have debated on it. There is some truth in the perception that the equilibrium which we had developed over the years in the relationship between Hindus and Muslims has got upset since the advent of the Modi Government. There is a sense of superiority among the Hindus and insecurity among the Muslims.

True, the strength that the equation has developed in such a way that the bond, however weakened, has not snapped altogether. Maybe, both communities have come to terms with the realities on the ground and developed an understanding which stands them in good stead during the crises that arise occasionally.

The RSS, which has added violence or, at best, the threat of it, has given a new edge to the narrative. The organisation, which had taken a back seat since the assassination of Mahatma Gandhi, is rearing its ugly head again and trying to put up a statute in memory of Godse who shot Gandhi dead. Not that the Congress party had made the society secular. But its ideology is secular and it raised the secular voice even when the communal forces gained ascendency. The other perception about the Modi Government is that the communal elements have got a fillip in the administration.

The understanding may have developed on the part of Muslims that they have to live with the majority, however impossible. Perhaps both live in separate worlds of their own. Social contacts between the two have reduced to the minimum. Yet, the ever present tension which one could smell has more or less gone.

Even the hostility towards Pakistan, a feature of daily life, is less than before. But it is still there. The common man never abjured goodwill towards the people in Pakistan. But now even governments have realised the futility of plugging a line which does not sell. There are good chances of the two sides sitting across the table for a dialogue.

The Punjabis in both the states, one in India and other across the border, are so communal in approach that they do not appreciate the Sufi culture which is the synthesis of religious values on both sides. The Pakistan Government’s allegation that India is trying to change the demographic pattern in the State of Jammu and Kashmir is palpably wrong.

The return of Kashmiri Pandits to the Valley is something to be welcomed. Their integration with the Muslims is one proof of the durability of Kashmiriyat, representing both the comm-unities. Even the separatists, except probably the fundamentalist Syed Ali Shah Geelani, strongly defend the presence of Pandits in their midst on the ground that they were and remain an integral part of their society.

In fact, the strength of Kashmiriyat is that it is based on the secular ethos. The students at Aligarh should take a leaf out of Kashmir’s book and learn to resist the temptation of underlining their identity on the basis of religion.

The author is a veteran journalist renowned not only in this country but also in our neighbouring states of Pakistan and Bangladesh where his columns are widely read. His website is www.kuldipnayar.com

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Muslim Condemnations of ISIS You’ve Been Looking For - Big list by Georgetown

Not all, but its a good start.
Mike Ghouse

Global Condemnations: https://www.ing.org/community-statements/1336-global-condemnations-isis-isil

Muslim Outrage on Charlie Hebdo http://www.alternet.org/media/45-examples-muslim-outrage-about-charlie-hebdo-attack-fox-news-missed

Here Are the (Many) Muslim Condemnations of ISIS You’ve Been Looking For


We’ve all heard it before. In the wake of violence carried out by Muslims, a proverbial echo:
“Why aren’t Muslims speaking out? Why aren’t they condemning these acts, done in the name of their religion?”
It’s a common exhortation, one that is ever the more amplified in the age of ISIS. Begged in earnest by some and demanded in anger by others, the question reveals as much about the person asking it as it does about the assumed absence of Muslim denunciations. Here’s Fox News host Greta Van Susteren posing the question, and offering Muslims a spot on her television show to publicly reject violence:

This incessant query supposes that Muslims the world over haven’t publicly rejected the violence of groups like ISIS and al-Qaeda. More importantly, though, it highlights the inability or refusal on the part of those who ask the question to find out if, in fact, Muslims really haven’t spoken out.
But Muslims have spoken out. Loudly. A simple Google search reveals tens of dozens of condemnations. There are lists. There are listicles. There are hashtags. There are even comical Tumblrs. These are great resources that gather together statements from Muslim clergy, organizations, and political leaders.
Yet, lists chronicling denunciations of al-Qaeda are hard to navigate, or only provide a smattering of statements from Muslim leaders. Condemnations in other languages are not included. Hashtag campaigns live and die with headlines.
Even these resources, which are desperately needed, present a skewed portrait of what’s actually happening, of who is actually speaking out.

As part of an ongoing project that monitors and maps Muslims’ condemnations of terrorism, The Bridge Initiative offers this summary of Muslims’ condemnations of ISIS. It’s the most comprehensive catalog ever compiled.
To date, we’ve identified condemnations from more than 80 religious, civil, and political organizations, from 92 countries on six continents. From Argentina to Canada, from Alaska to Australia, Muslims have denounced ISIS. There are dozens of local student groups, tens of dozens of online campaigns and joint statements, and scores of public demonstrations and protestsGovernment leaders from the top 10 countries with the largest Muslim populations have condemned the group, as have some 14 Grand Muftis (the highest official of religious law in Sunni Muslim countries).
This map shows the extent to which Muslims worldwide reject ISIS.

This map, which charts and highlights Muslim condemnations of ISIS, will soon be interactive.
This map, which charts and highlights Muslim condemnations of ISIS, will soon be interactive.

In the coming weeks, this resource will be fully interactive, allowing site visitors to filter them based on their search preferences, view the specific details, and export info-graphics to social media. This resource will be updated on a regular basis. We also plan to create similar maps of Muslims’ condemnations of other terrorist groups and acts.
The aim of this project is the same one that underscores all of The Bridge Initiative’s work: to challenge narratives that contribute to Islamophobia through accessible research that resonates with the public. The assumption that Muslims don’t reject violence carried out in the name of their religion is an incorrect one, but it contributes to the harmful stereotype that Islam, and all Muslims, are inherently violent. By locating, centralizing, and featuring the countless denunciations from around the world, we disrupt that narrative.
We hope that this resource will be utilized  and disseminated by journalists, politicians, and other thought leaders, so that the question, “Why aren’t Muslims speaking out?” will fade away.

Monday, May 11, 2015

Mona Eltahawy: ‘All religions are obsessed with my vagina’

All religions are obsessed with my vagina | www.WorldMuslimCongress.com

Link: http://worldmuslimcongress.blogspot.com/2015/05/mona-eltahawy-all-religions-are.html

Mona had to use the language she has used to get a sense of freedom, it is a shame men are still misogynistic, get this straight, it is all men and not necessarily Arab or Muslim men.  Men still feel insecure to act and feel equal with women. We need to grow up.
 I feel, believe and act equal with whole humanity and that is the essence of Islam, to be humble.

Mike Ghouse

# # #

Mona Eltahawy: ‘All religions are obsessed with my vagina’



Mona Eltahawy is an award-winning journalist and commentator on Arab and Muslim issues and global feminism. Born in Port Said, Egypt, in 1967, she moved to the UK with her parents (both doctors) when she was seven and then to Saudi Arabia when she was 15. In November 2011, while covering the protests in Egypt, she was physically and sexually assaulted by riot police, and detained for 12 hours by the Interior Ministry and Military Intelligence. The following year, her examination of misogyny in the Muslim world entitled “Why Do They Hate Us?” became a viral sensation. She has now expanded the original article into a book, Headscarves and Hymens: Why the Middle East Needs a Sexual Revolution. Eltahawy lives in Cairo and New York.

Your book is part-manifesto, part-memoir and includes testimony from Muslim women who have experienced abuse throughout their lives. You mention cases of female genital mutilation and rape. Was it difficult to write?

Incredibly difficult. Many times, I literally had to walk away from my laptop. It was triggering for me, especially when writing about sexual assault because of my own experience, not just of the assault but of misogyny. It was not an easy book to write.

You write that you were “traumatised into feminism” as a teenager. What do you mean by that?

My family moved to Saudi Arabia from Glasgow when I was 15. Being a 15-year-old girl anywhere is difficult — all those hormones and everything – but being a 15-year-old girl in Saudi Arabia…it was like someone had turned the light off in my head. I could not get a grasp on why women were treated like this. In the UK, my mother had been the breadwinner. I’d seen my parents side by side. In Saudi Arabia, my mother was basically rendered disabled. She was unable to drive, dependent on my dad for everything. The religious zealotry was so suffocating. And I had been raised a Muslim, I came from a Muslim family, but this was ultra-zealous. As a woman in Saudi Arabia, you have one of two options. You either lose your mind – which at first happened to me because I fell into a deep depression – or you become a feminist.

Were you anxious about the outrage you might provoke in some quarters by speaking openly about misogyny within your own community?

I’ve got a lot of hate… But it’s hate from people I’m glad I’m pissing off. As a woman with an opinion, you get a lot of shit.

Are all religions misogynistic?

Absolutely, to some degree. All religions, if you shrink them down, are all about controlling women’s sexuality… They’re obsessed with my vagina. I tell them: stay outside my vagina unless I want you in there.

You call for a ‘double revolution’. What do you mean by that?

What happened in Tunisia in 2010 was a political revolution driven by recognition that the state was oppressing everybody. But I think when women looked around afterwards, they recognised that the state, the street and the home still oppressed women specifically and that trifecta of oppression means that political revolution, unless accompanied by a social and sexual revolution, will fail.

 Mona Eltahawy explains why Egyptian women are sexually harassed at every level of society.

You decided to wear the hijab at 15. Why?

I wanted to wear it at 15 but my parents said I was too young, so I wore it at 16 and very quickly realised it wasn’t for me. I missed feeling the wind in my hair. When I was eating, it would constrict the way I felt I could swallow.

So you stopped wearing it at 19…

I became a feminist while wearing the hijab and to people who challenged that I would say: “This is my way of choosing which parts of my body I show you, so that you don’t objectify me.” But I realised it was very hard to hold on to because if a man cannot do that, the problem is with him and not with me. I was changing my physical presence in order for a man not to objectify me, rather than the man working on himself not to do it.
You write about your brutal assault by Egyptian riot police in 2011. Were you scared when it was happening?

Was I scared? [Pause] At first, I didn’t think they would do anything to me. I was just one woman, what would four riot police want with me? [Laughs] For much of it, it was more of an adrenaline overdrive where you do anything you have to just to survive, but there was one point when they took me to this no-man’s land where they sexually assaulted me and I fell to the ground and this [internal] voice said to me: “If you don’t get up now, you will die.” I managed to get up with two broken arms and fight them off. I was literally taking hands out of my trousers.

And you dyed your hair red and got tattoos after that?

Yes. Both my arms were in casts for three months. As a writer, that’s incredibly frustrating. Before, words were my medium, my weapons, and now the only thing I was able to use was one finger on a touchpad, so I was basically on Twitter all day. I was high on Vicodin, which is an amazing, amazing drug, [and] I would tell people on Twitter: “When my bones heal, I want to mark what happened to me.”

I realised I could use my body to send messages, not just words. When I started to read about tattoos, I found that a lot of victims of sexual abuse have them as a way of reclaiming their body, to take it back from what they [the abusers] did. So on my right arm, I have a tattoo of Sekhmet, the Ancient Egyptian goddess of retribution and sex. The way I put it, she’ll kick your ass and then fuck your brains out. She has the head of a lioness and the body of a woman. On my left arm, I have Arabic calligraphy and I have the name of the street where I was assaulted, because it became an icon of the revolution: Mohamed Mamoud street. Underneath, I have the Arabic word for “freedom”.
And the red hair?

I just think it was [saying]: “I’m here.”

You were named by Newsweek as one of the 150 ‘Most Fearless Women of 2012’. Do you consider yourself fearless?

You know, I never ever think about that fearless, courage, brave stuff. It’s just what I do. I’m often asked, “Do you feel safe in Egypt?” and I answer: no one feels safe in Egypt. For anyone who continues to exist as a dissident just to survive is a form of resistance.
I read somewhere you’re a lifelong Manchester United fan…

Huge! Since I was nine. To my distress, my father, brother and my brother’s four kids are all Liverpool fans.

Qur’anic Approach to Cognitive & Behavioral Change: Psychological Perspective

About Mustafa Nadeem Kirmani | www.WorldMuslimCongress.com
Link: http://worldmuslimcongress.blogspot.com/2015/05/quranic-approach-to-cognitive.html 

Please read the following article, a full research paper (5370 Words)  on “Quranic Approach to Cognitive & Behavioral Change: Psychological Perspective.” Dr. Kirmani is a Research Scholar, Department of Psychology, Aligarh Muslim University, Aligarh. We hope to continue to receive his perspective on different aspects of Islam from a Psychologist's point of view. 

At the Aligarh Muslim University conference, Dr. Kirmani was very involved in all aspects of the conference. Indeed, he was a big supporter of women’s right during the panel discussion on Gender issues – he stepped in to the informal discussions whenever it was needed. I looked up to him for support and he gave that needed support. 

Dr. Kirmani, and I hope to work together in taking on people like Subramanian Swamy, Taslima Nasreen – not to defeat, embarrass or show them their place, but engage them in a civil conversation, where they cannot produce the back up for some of their claims, that they throw in regularly.  That is how we gain the “un-sure Indians (they don’t want to believe the Swamy but unless they have an alternative they won’t have a choice)” into seeing facts, a few at time for the common good of our society. It’s a long term process and we have to do it patiently.

I am proud of our friendship, and glad he has the heart and mind to passionately. 
Please read, comment if you wish, and forward. Two pictures from the campus are shared at the bottom of the article. 

Mike Ghouse 

# # #

Qur’anic Approach to Cognitive & Behavioral Change: Psychological Perspective

Mustafa Nadeem Kirmani*

    Quran is the message from Allah that was revealed on Prophet Mohammed (P.B.U.H) in a span of 23 years. Quran and Prophet Mohammed’s actions (Sunnah) are the core of Islam. The purpose of Qur’anic message is to guide human kind in all spheres of their life and thereby improve human condition and quality of life. Guidance in a broader sense means changes in people’s beliefs and subsequently their actions. Reverting to Islam is also guidance and doing any action which brings either   one’s own or others’ welfare in a just way is also guidance. Human beliefs , thoughts and attitudes often refer to as cognitions and overt actions are known as behaviors. Quran aims to bring positive changes in one’s beliefs and actions which will ultimately lead to positive changes at an individual and at social level. Allah in Quran clearly states that Prophet Mohammed is the role model for all of us in all spheres of life. Allah wants human beings to become responsible and pro active beings for their own behaviors. Negative psychological states like blaming others, fault finding tendencies and defensive strategies to ward off undesirable behaviors are strongly condemned in Quran. It aims to make people aware about their own behaviors, feel and take responsibilities of what they do. Quran advocates the principle of self-responsibility and inspires people to be proactive and responsible agents to bring positive change. This paper will attempt to integrate Quran and behavioral and cognitive approach in a scientific way to bring changes in human thoughts and behaviors.

*Research Scholar, Department of Psychology, Aligarh Muslim University, Aligarh
 Mobile no: 08267871886
       Note: The author is professionally trained and License Clinical Psychologist

Holy Quran was revealed on Prophet Mohammed (P.B.U.H) in a span of 23 years. Its message was sent through Archangel Gabriel and the nature of message depends on the particular requirement and situation which demands that. In total, 114 chapters (Surahs) were revealed in 23 years.

Quran and step by step behavioral change
   The very fact that Allah took 23 years to complete the message of Quran clearly indicates that bringing change in people’s behavior and cognitions is a gradual process. The term “cognitions” means people’s thoughts, beliefs, attitude and perception.  Allah used evolutionary rather than revolutionary approach to bring change in the existing belief of the people and society at large during that time. Human psychology is best known to Allah and so gradual and step by step process was used to reveal Quranic message in 23 years so that the message sinks in human psyche with ease and also the to avoid resentment and rebellious behavior which often occurs in using revolutionary approach to bring change. History has taught us that changing governments and social structures through revolutionary approach often cause violent confrontations and bloodshed. Behavior scientists and psychologists also believe that step by step and gradual changes are often long lasting and more persistent.

    This basic behavior change principle is often used by Clinical Psychologists in the process of psychotherapy and counseling to bring change in their clients’ behavior. In psychological interventions of substance and alcohol abuse, this principle is most often employed. The therapist motivates the clients to slowly decrease their substance abuse or alcohol intake so that the process of de addiction itself becomes easy and to reduce the dropout rate during therapy. The same approach was used in Quran to reduce alcohol drinking from the Arab society of those times. In yet another verse in Quran, Allah says that it is revealed in stages, “Thus it is revealed, that We may strengthen thy heart thereby, and We have rehearsed it to thee in slow, well-arranged stages, gradually” (25:32). Allah explicitly explains here that the purpose of revealing it in stages is to strengthen its message so that it becomes clear to human beings and sink into human mind so that executing it becomes easy. Research in psychological sciences and in educational psychology has also shown that spaced learning is often better than massed learning. Spaced learning means learning step by step and not in bulk. Its implication is if the behavior change is desired at an individual level or group level, slow and step by step approach should be used to bring the change.

Quran & behavioral discrepancy

  In another verse Allah says “O ye who believe! Why say ye that which ye do not?” (61:2). This verse means that whatever people say, they should also do that. There should be harmony between their sayings and actions. Words and actions should go hand in hand. There should be consonance between actions and sayings. If a person says something and does something, unpleasant psychological state will be experienced by him/her. Psychologists call that state of mind as dissonance. This state is so unpleasant that people are motivated to undo this unpleasant condition. To undo or reduce this state, various defensive or other psychological strategies are utilized by people. Quran categorically states that people should live in harmony with their sayings and behaviors. Their behaviors in day to day life should reflect what they preach/say in their sermons. If there is some discrepancy between their sayings and behaviors, it will be modelled by others who watch and listen to them. Even children who observe them will imitate the same behavioural pattern. Psychologist, Bandura in 1977 posits that behaviors are acquired and learned by observing the behaviors of others and has been shown in many experiments. For psychologists behaviors are not only overt actions but also internal thoughts. The emphasis of Quran to say and act in the same direction has significant implications for brining change in oneself and others. If the society has people who give sermons and instructions to others to follow a set of behaviors, but themselves don’t follow them will create chaos among people and will have significant negative implications. First, people and children will learn just to give sermons without applying them in their life by observing this trend in the social system. Clinical and empirical work on families have shown that  inconsistency between  what the parents say and do to their children is often the source of conflicts in many family systems.  So, Allah strongly condemns this behavioural practice in Quran. There is a strong need to reflect on this   aspect of behavior so that attempt is made to bring consistency between what people say and do. Psychological interventions with the integration of Quran can help people becoming more aware about their behavioral discrepancies.  Psychological interventions like Johri window technique can be of great help in brining consistency between people’s sayings and actions.

Quran and pro active behavior

   Quran presents human beings as proactive and responsible agents of change. Allah says in Quran “We never changes the conditions of those who first change themselves” (8:53). One of the authentic hadith says first tie your camel, then expect from Allah. This is the revolutionary message from Quran. It gives the message of action oriented approach. The Quran inspires people to first perform action then expects help from Allah. This is a dynamic initiate taking approach which will increase volition taking tendencies in human beings. Hagar exemplies this in her search for water for her son Ismail in a remote desert without any company and only a bag full of dates and some water. Hagar was nourished by Allah through divine intervention. Yet such intervention on the part of Almighty resulted not simply from Hager’s prayers but more importantly from her efforts to find help on her own. This implies that activism and self-initiation are integral aspect of piousness/taqwa, not simply passive faith in Allah. This will help a person to learn problem solving skills.

   Self-regulation and Quran

Allah says in Quran "O ye who believe! Fasting is prescribed to you as it was prescribed to those before you, that ye may learn self-restraint” (2: 183). The research on self-regulation has been extensively done by Baumeister and Exline (1999, 2000). Self-regulation refers to the self’s altering its own responses. Self-control helps in resisting temptation, refocus attention, alter a mood or emotional state, overcome fatigue and other ways to change their behaviors and emotions. Self-regulation contributes greatly to the flexibility and diversity of human behavior. It has implications for moral behaviors. If people did not have the capacity to alter their behavior, moral rules would be useless. Self-regulation principle helps people realize the wrongness of their actions, but they would be powerless to change those actions. Self-regulation is a master virtue because self-regulation is necessary for people to behave virtuously and avoid vice or sin.   Baumeister and Exline through their research on this variable pointed out the importance of centrality of self-regulation to moral behavior. The behavior of being glutton refers to overeating and possibly engaging in other pleasures to excess. Failure to regulate eating behavior is a classic example of a lack of self-regulation. People also need self-control to overcome sloth, or laziness. Sloth means the failure to override the impulse either to stop working or to continue doing something other than working. When the desire for these inappropriate goals arises, people must exert self-regulation in order to override the urge to act in pursuit of the goal. The first cardinal virtue, prudence, refers to weighing long-term implications and risks when making decisions or acting. Prudence is related to the ability to forego immediate gratification for the sake of a greater, delayed benefit. Self-regulation also helps in being just or doing what is morally right.  Quran gives a lot of importance on the virtue of justice. There are many verses related to justice in Quran (10:44, 10: 54, 36: 54)). In one the verses in chapter 4 Allah says ““O you who have believed, be persistently standing firm in justice, witnesses for Allah, even if it be against yourselves or parents and relatives. Whether one is rich or poor, Allah is more worthy of both. So follow not [personal] inclination, lest you not be just. And if you distort [your testimony] or refuse [to give it], then indeed Allah is ever, with what you do, Acquainted” (4:135).

   This is essential to understand that justice as a behavior is not just a group behavior but also occurs at individual level too. Behavior which violates the rule of justice often cause lots of problems at home, in organizations, society at large and at national and international level. Let’s give common day to day example. If any parents do not allow the daughter to go for higher education but allows their son to go for the same and similarly if mate selection choice for nikah is allowed for the son but the same is not approved if done by the daughter, it becomes a source of conflict between the daughter and the parents simply because the parents violates the rule of justice commanded by Allah.

Temperance refers to being moderate rather than excessive; the ability to refrain from excess also requires self-control. Fortitude is to remain resolute despite adversity. It means to be resilient. This courage or firmness demands self-control to overcome the desire to compromise and thereby escape one’s suffering. Each of these virtues as highlighted in Quran also seems to hinge upon the ability to control oneself.

Ability to delay gratification has been studied as a classic example of self-control (Mischel, Shoda, & Peake, 1988).Similarly, poor behavioral self-regulation   often leads to impulsivity in which people act out in anger, have poor consequential thinking and impaired judgment. This behavioral dysregulation often leads to interpersonal conflicts, issues at work place and host of other issues. Thus, poor self-regulation creates multitude of interpersonal, family related and legal issues. Quran’s emphasis on learning to have self-regulation skills have significant implications in life and can bring lots of positive behavioral changes in people. Self-regulation is a skill that can be learned. Often it is found that children learn poor self –regulation from their parents through observing them. It is, therefore, essential that Quran be read not just as a religious book read rather a book to be comprehended and followed to bring positive changes in the behavior so that children and others will the same behavioral pattern.

Quran and assertive behavior

 Being assertive is associated with feeling confident with oneself, managing interpersonal relationships, expressing one’s true feelings politely etc. Assertiveness does not mean aggressiveness. Assertiveness means expressing one’s ideas, opinions, feelings politely and directly to the person without infringing her/his personal rights. Unlike assertiveness, being aggressive means infringing on others’ rights and to hurt other person. It has been observed that aggressive people are often ignored by others and slowly their social circle becomes very small and they remain in their own shelves. Quran gives a wonderful example of an assertive lady (58: 1) who discussed her issue with Prophet Mohammed regarding the prevailing biased custom of Zihar during those days.
Allah says in Quran “God has heard the statement of she who argued with you concerning her husband, as she complained to God. God heard your conversation. God is Hearing and Seeing. ” (58:1).
           In this situation, the woman is suffering for none of her fault. Secondly, important point to be noticed here that Quran does not condemn the behavior of that woman with Prophet Mohammad as she was raising genuine concern for her. It simply means that voices against injustice be raised in an affirmative and assertive however.  It was her assertive discussion with the Prophet which finally led to the termination of that biased custom following the revelation of that verse subsequent to that woman’s assertiveness. Another example of assertive behavior is by a lady named Fatima who raised voice when Caliph Umar put restriction on the amount of mehar to be paid by husbands to their wives. Being assertive is a skill not a born trait so it can be learned. Parents can teach their children to be assertive through their own behavior when parents themselves behave in assertive fashion not aggressively. Another way by which assertive skills can be taught is through script techniques in which examples of assertive behaviors need to be told through stories. Following are steps used in assertive skills training:

a)      Specify the behavior to be learned
b)      Discuss the steps of those behavior
c)      Do a role play
d)     Feedback and rehearse
This and many other verses of Quran which condemns unjust behavior should become the actual source in training programs to teach assertive behavior to children and others.
Quran and interpersonal conflict management: Salam Model
Quran teaches a wonderful behavior principle to resolve conflict. Allah says in Quran “The servants of the Merciful are those who walk the earth in humility, and when the ignorant address them, they say, “Peace” (25:63). It often occurs that some people either knowingly or unknowingly keep passing or saying words or sentences to others to irritate them. In another verse, Allah condemns behaviors of passing comments, bad remarks and taunting behaviors. This often causes conflicts among them. To avoid any confrontation, Quran teaches a simple behavioral strategy to resolve this issue. It teaches that if such people try to irritate them, the best way is just to say “Salam” to them and walk away. It may work twofold. It will not create a situation of conflict and secondly by passing reverse gretting in the Salam might motivate them not to repeat that behavior again and even can help to nurture relationship with the person who was the target. This is what I call as “Salam Model” of interpersonal conflict management. This need to be practiced at home, work place and the situations where in such conflicts may arise.

 Social group conflict management and Quran

Conflicts at group, social, cultural, national and international level mostly arises because of ethnocentric beliefs in some groups. Ethnocentrism means feeling and thinking that my group is “superior” to any other group. It may be in terms of one’s religion/faith, language, region, community etc.Common observation shows that human beings share more similarities than differences. Psychologists have even shown in their research work that even expression of emotions have similarities among different cultures. Quran uses a shared common approach to resolve this group conflict issues. Allah says in Quran “ to God” (3:65). This Quranic model of knowing and discussing similarities between/among conflicting groups can be a wonderful approach of group conflict resolution. Interpersonal and group conflicts often take place because of ethnocentric belief and negative stereotypes that people hold of each other. One of the psychological strategies to deal with this is to provide knowledge to people about groups and their similar characteristics. One of the verses from Quran helps in imparting knowledge base training to shed stereotypes and highlight similarities among people. Allah says in Quran “and confound not truth with falsehood nor hide the truth, knowingly”(2:43). This verse from Holy Quran can be an inspiring for educators, policy makers, administrators, religious leaders to be utilized for imparting knowledge about others without any partiality as explicitly stated in the verse. Transpiring prejudice against other groups is clear violation of the basic principle of Quran. Integrating this Quranic verse in conflict resolution training can work wonders and can bring relative peace in society. If schools develop curriculum which focus on similarities of different groups, negative stereotypes and prejudiced cognitions may not develop in young children and hence when they grow they will be having less prejudiced.

Reasoning and psychology of reflection in Quran

Quran uses the word fu’ad for reasoning.  It is used in the Quran in reference to both the emotional and intellectual elements of the human beings. Human emotions like love, fear or affinity influence people’s reasoning and judgement.It urges believers and others to use their intellect and reasoning skills to reach at conclusions. The Quran promotes an approach to knowledge and learning in which reason is given prominence. Blindly following anything is condemned in the Quran. Allah says “And do not pursue that of which you have no knowledge. Indeed, the hearing, the sight and the heart - about all those [one] will be questioned” (17:36).

In another verse the Quran states “Surely the worst of beasts in God's sight are those that are deaf and dumb and do not reason” (8:22). Here deaf and dumb do not mean in physical sense rather as a metaphor and emphasized the importance of using reasoning skills. Allah teaches us to invite others the message of Quran also in a logical way. Allah says “Invite [all] to the Way of thy Lord with wisdom and beautiful preaching; and argue with them in ways that are best and most gracious: for thy Lord knoweth best, who have strayed from His Path, and who receive guidance. This methodology of inviting others has psychosocial implications. Using wisdom, logic and understanding the situation and context before inviting is highlighted in this verse. This can be used in class room situation wherein teaching be done in such a way to make sense and logical so that it becomes meaningful.
 Quran often uses the word tadabbur for reflecting thinking. Tadabbur helps us to reach on conclusions after reflected on the content once it is processed in the brain. Teaching and training children in reflective thinking using the Quran as a source will help them enhance their thinking and decision making skills.

Psychology of moderation and Quran

    Moderate person is the one who leads a balanced life and avoids extreme perspectives and steers away from excessive behavior and extravagant life. Moderation is central to the moral discipline emphasized by the Quran. The Quran directs Muslims to seek moderate path in all spheres of life. One of the theories of emotion also highlights this that human emotions remain balance anger follows love, loves follow anger (Solomin, 1980). Moderation is the basic principle of the Quran to be followed (55; 7-9, 2: 143, 91: 7-10, 10:83). Allah says in the Quran “Make not thy hand tied [like a niggard's] to thy neck, nor stretch it forth to its utmost reach, so that thou become blameworthy and destitute” (17:29). The Quran states “O Children of Adam! wear your beautiful apparel at every time and place of prayer: eat and drink: But waste not by excess, for Allah love not the wasters (7:31). In another verse Allah says “But waste not by excess: for Allah love not the wasters” (6:141).  These moderate behaviors in different domains of life can taught to others through script interventions, modeling and reinforcement. If the parents and other authority figures do not follow moderate behaviors, it becomes very difficult to inculcate these skills in others as it has already been discussed in this paper that sayings and actions should go together otherwise it work. In fact it may backfire and children will learn behavioral excesses.
   The principle that one should not take on responsibilities beyond one’s ability to deliver and sustain is repeatedly emphasized in the Qur’anic teachings and the prophetic statements.
“On no soul doth Allah Place a burden greater than it can bear. It gets every good that it earns, and it suffers every ill that it earns” (2:286). Bukhari and Muslim reported that the Prophet said: Focus on your goal and try your best and know that no one will enter paradise merely through his own deeds and the best of deeds are those that endure even if they were of little significance.

   The implication of the mentioned Qur’anic verse and  the Prophet’s statement is that teaching, training and expectations should be as per one’s abilities and children and people should attempt to give their best and teachers and administers should keep realistic expectations from the employees and students based on their abilities.

Modeling of Prophet’s behavior

   The Quran is very categorical that Prophet Mohammad (P.B.U.H) is the best model to be followed in all domains of life. Allah says “Ye have indeed in the Messenger of Allah a beautiful pattern [of conduct] for any one whose hope is in Allah and the Final Day, and who engages much in the Praise of Allah” (33:21). Psychologists assert that modeling is a form of learning which takes place directly or even indirectly or vicariously. Through modeling most of the traits are acquired by those who model. There is a strong need to instill the idea of overall modeling of behavior not just some specific attributes. It can take place through telling scripts of Prophet’s life events, and his behaviors at different levels of life. He as a husband, as a father, as a teacher, as a neighbor, as an administrator, as an army person etc need to be told not just his physical attributes. Our prophet used to reflect on the world and ponder over it. Even reflecting on the world thinking that it is being done to appreciate Allah is a form of ibada. He was called as trustworthy by the Arab society even by those who were against him. The fact that  being trustworthy is a behavioral trait and reflects in day to day behavioral transactions and not a reflection of physical attribute is a point need to be emphasized among masses so that modeling of his behaviors takes place which are key to give message others.

Behavioral paradigm and Quran

   Quran is very clear on the concepts of rewards and punishments. Quran makes explicit that pious behaviors (2:177) will be rewarded in the form of Heaven and sinful behaviors will be punished in the form of Hell. Quran also highlights the fact that punishment should be proportionate to the nature of sinful behavior done. So, the psychology of fear and psychology of reward is being highlighted and emphasized in the Quran.  Clinical psychologists use the same principles in their behavioral approaches of treatment in working with their clients.

   Marital relationship and Quran

   Quran uses a metaphor of garment for husband and wife. Allah says in Quran They are your garments and ye are their garments (2:187). In yet another verse Allah says “It is He Who created you from a single person, and made his mate of like nature, in order that he might dwell with her in love” (7:189). Quran gives the right to both spouses of selecting their marital partners. No one can force them to marry out of force. It also teaches the approach to resolve marital conflict by asking members from each family to try to resolve the issue (4:35). Quran also highlights a wonderful way of separating in case both the spouses and any one does not want to live in wedlock.  Quran asserts that if there is no way to reconciliation, the spouses be get separated in peace and kindness without mudslinging (2:229). Quran highlights to the level of giving some gift to the wife before separating with peace. The current clinical work on family and marital therapy evolved the same model of separating with ease. This model intervention is often known as divorce seeking therapy. It is a paradoxical statement that therapy is being sought for divorce rather than resolving conflicts. The idea of this intervention is the same as mentioned in the Quran to get separated peacefully and with kindness.

Psychology of hope and Quran

   Positive psychology model emphasizes on human strengths and resources rather than limitations. It studies variables like resilience, positive emotions like happiness, hope etc.Synder (1995) an American psychologist gave hope model and focused on agencies and pathways. It means the construct of hope will help people to have specific goals and executing ways to reach the goals. People who hare realistically hopeful will attempt to solve issues and will attempt to become solution oriented. The Quran keep emphasizing and motivating its believers to be hopeful and never lose hope from Allah. (39:53, 12:87).Reading and contemplating Qur’anic verses related to hope will help people developing cognitions of hope and at the same time along with hope, proactive approach as mentioned in the Quran will push an individual toward goal attainment.

Self-esteem enhancement and Quran

Psychologists define self-esteem as one’s own evaluation in terms of good or bad traits. Self-esteem is developed through the feedback of others and through our own evaluation on the basis of the criteria set by the person herself/himself. Self-esteem is a global construct not just measured in any one aspect. Poor self-esteem is associated with anger outbursts, depression, poor academic and work performance. Quran raises the self –esteem of people by saying that “Allah honored the children of Adam” (17:70). Allah also says in Quran “We have created humans in the bet of moulds” (95:4). It implies that human beings are born with various skills in terms of physical, behavioral and intellectual ones. The skills need to be known to us and used for our own and others’ welfare. Prophet’s method of focusing on people’s positive actions and discussing their limitations personally not in public aids in maintaining people’s self-esteem. Quran and Prophet’s behavioral approaches need to be integrated in the current system to facilitate changes in their behaviors and cognitions.

Quran and Social psychology of Rumor

Rumor is one of the most important causes of violence and riots in the world. Social psychologists define rumor as “a piece of information that is being passed from one person to another without verification”. The word without verification is the key in this definition. Quran trains people to use a behavioral strategy on the same principle to avoid spreading of rumors. Allah says in Quran “O ye who believe! If a wicked person comes to you with any news, ascertain the truth, lest ye harm people unwittingly, and afterwards become full of repentance for what ye have done(49:6). The basic teaching of this verse is to ascertain the truth of the information being given to us before reacting or passing the same information to others. Since Allah has made human beings the most intellectual beings having lots of skills (Ashraful Makhlooqaat), it is our responsibility to decide which information needs to be ascertained. Common sense says that the information which may have significant negative implications if passes on to others must be checked. Lots of work in the area of social psychology has shown that hundreds of people had died because of riots broke out because of false information being passed on to others. A book named “Psychology of Rumor” was published in 1944 written by Robert Knapp and similarly “Rumor clinic” was established by Gordon Allport in the same Year to reduce the rumor crises as rumors led to deaths of thousands of people in the USA. Quran already taught us this principle so that human crises and violent confrontations and sacred human life can be saved.

  Quran aims to bring positive changes  in people’s thoughts and behaviors. The term guidance as used in Islam is a very broad term and does not mean just reverting to Islam. It means seeking help from Allah in any spheres of life be it be very small sphere or large. Even reverting to Islam is nothing but change in one’s belief’s and cognitions which in turn follows change in behavior. Psychologists believe that bringing changes in thoughts facilitate change in behavior. Similarly changes in behaviors in turn can bring changes in one’s cognitions and thoughts. Understanding and reflecting on the content of Quran is assumed to bring changes in people’s cognitions and behaviors. It will work as a sort of bibiotherapy and through contemplation and reflections, possible cognitive restructuring may take place. There is a strong need to familiarize Quran and its message among masses. Its message needs to be popularized not only among Muslims but also among non-muslims in a way that appeals people and its message sink in their head. Qur’anic methodology of logical reasoning and understanding the audiences’ emotional and mental receptive state is the key in communicating the message of Quran to others. It is extremely essential that the message of the Quran be communicated   as the possible solution   to the contemporary issues at individual, group, national and global level. To make the message effective, it is all the more important that speakers, writers, leaders etc should themselves use Quran in their own life as a book of Divine guidance in resolving their day to day issues.

Future Directions
  1. Quran be used in schools, colleges, universities and other institutions irrespective of their faith as a tool to solve human problems.
  2. Professional and academic psychologists develop treatment modules based on the Quran.
  3. Training programs to Imams, Muftis, and other post holders in mosques to use Quran as a source of solution to many psychosocial issues as there are very few trained mental health professionals in India and even in the Muslim world. Mosques will become the source of discussing and finding human psychosocial problems.
  4. To change people’s socially inspired cognitions to true Qur’anic cogntions.
  5. Current Islamic laws to incorporate mental health issues before announcing punishment/penalties to offenders to avoid the chances of being unjust in the punishment procedure.


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Allport, G & Postman, G. (1951). Psychology of Rumor, Russel & Russell Publication, USA.

Bandura, A. (1977). Social learning theory. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice Hall.

Baumeister, R. F., & Exline, J. J. (1999). Virtue, personality, and social relations: Self-control as the moral muscle. Journal of Personality, 67, 1165–1194.

Baumeister, R. F., & Exline, J. J. (2000). Self-control, morality, and human strength. Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology, 19, 29–42.

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Snyder, C.R. (1995). Conceptualizing, measuring and nurturing hope. Journal of Counseling and Development73, 355-360.