Sunday, April 10, 2016

Passionate debate erupts over the future for women in Islam

Indeed, I agree with Zahra, Muslim understanding of Islam needs reform and not Islam.  Hibaq at the very end could have said, both Human rights and Islam go hand in hand, however the abuse of Sharia Law is what needs to be prevented. Farah's focus on the millennials was perfect. Ayan started with the Pew Survey, which is very questionable and even though I wrote about it, and have talked about it on Fox News - it needs more mileage to counter her arguments.  Here is the link questioning the Pew Survey at World Muslim Congress Hiba's comment was great, but somehow it did not make the impact - that is if you want the change the course of the boat, you have to be in the boat.

It is a good discussion, all of them made good points.

Mike Ghouse
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Sparks flew when Ayaan Hirsi Ali, who lives under a fatwa for her condemnation of Sharia law, came face to face with fellow Somali women’s activist Hibaaq Osman

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Religious freedom wins in Malaysia, both Islam and Christianity win, it is a landmark ruling.

PRESS RELEASE

World Muslim Congress
Contact:  Mike Ghouse (214) 325-1916
www.WorldMuslimCongress.com
MikeGhouse@aol.com

Religious freedom wins in Malaysia, re-conversion to Christianity is a landmark ruling.
Washington, D.C., April 6, 2016 --  The World Muslim Congress welcomes the landmark ruling by a High Court in Malaysia that recognized the  freedom of religion is a fundamental human right.

The right to follow one’s conscience is the God given right of every human.  When Adam was given the choice to eat or not eat the forbidden fruit with the given set of consequences, Adam ‘chose’ to eat the fruit. God could have stopped him, but God wanted to set an example of living up his own word and what freedom should mean until the human race lives on.

The court struck down a decades-long government policy that had made it tough for Christian converts to renounce their former Islamic faith without the consent of an Islamic court. The had another great judgment in the case of Lina Joy.
The Association of Churches in Sarawak praised the decision "as a ratification of the fundamental right to freedom of religion in Malaysia," Herald Malaysia and Christian Today reported.
"This judgment reaffirms the supremacy of the Federal Constitution, which under Article 11 defends every Malaysian citizen's right to freedom of religion," the group said.
High Court judge Yew Jen Kie of the Kuching High Court, Sarawak state granted the petition of Rooney Rebit asking judicial authorities to declare that his belief in Jesus Christ was a fundamental human right.
Rebit, 41, from a village in Sarawak, was born a Christian but was converted to Islam by his parents when he was about 10 years old and renamed Azmi Mohamad Azam.
Judge Yew ruled that Rebit is "free to exercise his right to freedom of religion and he chose Christianity.''
Indeed, Mr. Rebit is free to exercise his right to freedom; the Quran says 2:256,... Let there be no compulsion in religion: Truth stands out clear from Error ...” This is Islam's unambiguous affirmation of freedom of faith, which also applies to changing of faith. The Qur'an illuminates before the humanity the two highways [90:10], one of which leads to salvation. Islam is an invitation to the highway toward salvation, but it is based on FREEDOM OF CHOICE (http://apostasyandislam.blogspot.com/).”
We applaud the ruling as it clarifies the propaganda that Muslims compel others to stay in their fold through coercion and compulsion, which was never true or Islamic, even though it was practiced by a few Muslims.

We appreciate the efforts of the Government of Malaysia to uphold the inalienable rights of her citizens, which are God given and inherently Islamic.  We seek God’s guidance in helping us restore the pristine Islam of freedom, justice and mercy to mankind. Amen!   

Dr.  Mike Ghouse is a fellow at World Muslim Congress, a think tank committed to removing the dust Islamic practices has gathered over a period of time.  To be a Muslim is to be a peace maker, who seeks to mitigate conflicts and nurtures goodwill for peaceful existence of humanity.  
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Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Muslims Used To Love Living In Tennessee — Now It's A Nightmare


Muslims Used To Love Living In Tennessee — Now It's A Nightmare

Courtesy of Buzz Feed




"In November 2011, Geller and Spencer both attended a conference in Nashville promoted as the “first true national conference on Sharia and the Islamization of America.” National groups were finding fertile ground in Tennessee."

Note:  They did not invite me to the conference, but have claimed on the Wikipedia entry that I chose not to attend. 


" Ossama Bahloul, the imam of the Islamic Center of Murfreesboro, recalls feeling deeply uneasy when LGBT groups expressed their support during the campaign to stop the building of his mosque; recently, he declined to support one of these groups in return." 
“You might find it very confusing,” Bahloul says. “Politically, how am I going to support someone who is against my personal values? Because he supports my existence? And the very conservative person shares with me the same values — but he is against my existence.”

Standing up for the rights of all humanity is the Muslim thing to do, however, just like the conservative Christians, Conservative Muslims are opposed to the LGBT.  I am glad, I was one of the first few Muslims in America to have seen a clear distinction between the rights of individuals and have supported and would defend the rights of LGBT community. What they do is between them and God, I have no right to pass judgments against any one.  Thank God, Congressman Keith Ellison stood up for their rights and finally I believe (Needs to be verified) ISNA also recognized the right of each human, hetrosexual or homosexual. 
This article is worth reading, its quite long, but there is a lot to understand here. Article at:  http://www.buzzfeed.com/davidnoriega/muslims-used-to-love-living-in-tennessee-now-its-a-nightmare?utm_term=.hwG3195M1#.xsXlkdzgk 


Muslims Used To Love Living In Tennessee — Now It's A Nightmare

Muslims Used To Love Living In Tennessee — Now It's A Nightmare

Role of Majority Muslims to Combat Terrorism

Role of Muslim Majority - WorldMuslimCongress.Com
There is a couplet in Urdu language, which roughly translates into, whatever you want to do, go ahead and start, as you march forward, people will join you in the movement and bring the needed change.  Dr. Basheer Ahmed is that lone ranger, he started the Muslim Community Center for Social Services some 20 years ago, he struggled with it, but within a few years of hard work, commitment and dedication, it has become an important institution in Texas. You have to read about it at: http://mcc-hs.org/  Dr. Basheer Ahmed, has undertaken another initiative to nurture goodwill among Muslims of different backgrounds at Iqra.

Mike Ghouse
World Muslim Congress
# # #

Role of Majority Muslims to Combat Terrorism 

This is no longer news that the Muslim Terrorists are creating havoc by indiscriminate killing of innocent Muslims and Non-Muslims all over the world. It is just a matter of where and when?  It is followed by media frenzy.   Then interfaith groups convene. Sometimes I am summoned to speak to such peace loving groups about Islam. I try to emphasize that Islam promotes justice, equality, peace and harmony in the world and that these attacks are not representative of the followers of Islam. A more complex discussion evolves in trying to understand or explain the recurring attacks, and how to stop them.

In my humble opinion, one of those factors is:

1)  The Current Role And Image Of US And Western Countries In The Mideast.

The Muslim resentment of the United States and the Western countries and visive has peaked in recent years.  As a Muslim American, I find it alarming.

If I may, the ground reality is the immense atrocities of wars we spearheaded in the Muslim world. Half baked and mind boggling snippets of information fed through the media and other social outlets fanned hate and anger among Muslims. It is being attributed to the foreign policies of the western countries, especially the United States. For that, the United States has been losing its popularity and respect in the Middle East and South Asia since late 1960s. It was mainly due to its perceived policy of “20th century colonialism." Here in the United States, our words of promoting human values, dignity to human life, justice and equality do not match our politically correct behavior abroad.

The US foreign policy in the Middle East does not have any significant effect on ordinary US citizens. Here, all of us rejoice the freedom of speech, economic stability, law and order, and an equal opportunity to actualize our dreams. However, there are people here who clearly see the negative consequences of these US policies in the Middle East and other Muslim Countries. They are not afraid to point out that these policies are created purely to expedite Armageddon and for economic gains in the United States and Europe at the expense of the Muslim citizens in the Middle East, and they are not hesitant to call the US “the most terrorist country in the World” (https://www.rt.com/usa/202223-noam-chomsky-global-terro).

The illegal invasion of Iraq by the United States led to the deaths of at least one million people, destabilized the entire region, and created extreme conditions in which militant groups like al-Qaeda spread like a virus, eventually leading to the current era of ISIS. . (Dahr Jamail  “Report Shows US Invasion, Occupation of Iraq Left 1 Million Dead”, Truthout | Report)


During the Iraq war and thereafter, innocent people were not only rounded-up, tortured and imprisoned; hundreds of thousands were also killed. Lots of photos were posted on-line. The Abu ghuraib photo-reports were much too much even for the members of congress. These actions created tremendous hate and anger among Muslims in Middle East against the United States.

The disastrous NATO intervention in Libya destroyed the infrastructure, turning the country into a hotbed for extremism and allowing militant groups like ISIS to spread west into North Africa. Thousands of Libyans were killed, and hundreds of thousands became refugees.

Until very recently, Obama government was being pressured to bomb Iran for the same reason Bush attacked Iraq. If Iran were attacked, the US would have been responsible for the creation of another vintage of ISIS, worse than the Iraqi ISIS.

There may not be a peace in Middle East until Western powers leave the area and stop installing regimes for their personal short term economic gains.

In the midst of a multitude of terrorist groups, we seem to have overlooked the real problem. Bypassing, circumventing, avoiding or just out right partiality has now unfortunately left with only one solution. That is, a complete withdrawal by the West from any involvement in Middle East affairs. There is no doubt that more people will die. It will still be much less than that being caused now by the indiscriminate bombardment of the region being shelved by the West, including Russia. If western countries would just leave, and stop arming the “favorite” Muslims, the fuel and the oxygen for this firework would be gone. Unfortunately, the greed, the desire to control a people and continue to exert remains far too tempting for the powerful and the mighty. These factors are ever so vivid to any Middle-Easterner lay man. And this begs a question -
“Are these factors not enough for Muslims in Middle East to show resentment, anger, hatred and revenge towards US and their allies, including Russia? 

2) RESPONSIILITIES OF MUSLIMS

The ensuing anarchy in Muslims lands has also given rise to heart wrenching events. The bombing of a mosque in Iraq killing hundreds of people who were performing Juma prayer on the first day of Ramadhan-a very sacred day for the Muslims. One hundred and fifty (150) Muslim children are killed in Pakistan by Muslim terrorists without any mercy, 300 school girls kidnapped and taken away from the families in Nigeria, Muslim terrorists shoot a group of Ismaili Muslims in a bus in Pakistan, and people are picked out from a bus and killed because they were Shias. All this is being done under the name of Islam. What a merciful Islamic behavior demonstrated by Muslims upholding the good name of Islam (A Peaceful Religion).

Muslim Terrorists are operating under different names and different motives. Taliban, Al-Qaeda, Booko Haram, Al-Shahab, and hundreds of other groups are promoting violence in the name of Islam. Now, ISIS established a Muslim Khilafath and is promoting a more severe and brutal regime.

After these Muslim terrorists kill innocent people in the name of religion, the “moderate” Muslims, and even countries, typically react by issuing press releases and edicts (Fatwa) condemning the terrorists’ acts and apologizing for their behavior by labeling them un-Islamic and deviant. These press releases and Fatwa had no effect on terrorists.

Every time the media broadcasts Muslim terrorist acts, we accuse them of Islamophobia. We Muslims immediately give the statistic that 90% of the terrorist attacks are committed by Non- Muslim, though correct. Yet, fact remains, none of these terrorist acts are committed under the name of the religion. (I admit there are incidences like bombing of the abortion clinics, but they are extremely few, isolated and duly addressed...) Our denial will retain status quo.

What is the Solution?

The majority of the victims of Islamic terrorism are Muslims, and the majority of Muslims regard the terrorist’s activities as unislamic. However Muslims must take responsibility to control terrorism in the name of Islam.  Muslims need to stop sectarian violence and the spread the jihadi Wahhabi ideology resulting in death of thousands of Muslim throughout the world. If the majority of Muslims (95%) take this challenge, then terrorism can be controlled. By not taking any action, we are giving sanctions for terrorism. There is not necessarily a need for a complete reformation of Islamic faith, but Muslims do need to consider some reformation of radical Islamic ideology and reflect on the true Islamic spirit. Moderate Muslims must spread the correct message of Islam by refuting the Jihadi ideology.

Faith is a matter of relationship between God and human beings. The reformation of Muslims ideology is only possible through education, logic, and critical thinking. As long as some dominating groups try to impose their rigid and sometime illogical ideas in the name of religion, we cannot bring any change in the ideology. Mandating one interpretation of the Quranic message is not desirable and should be replaced with interpretations according to the needs of the time.

No matter whatever the underlying factors are. TERRORISM is not the answer as it will cause more death and destruction, and it is not a rational approach to the solution.

Therein lays a unique opportunity of historical proportion for Muslims. Along with millions of other peace loving American Citizens – across the board – we can work together to find a peaceful solution - towards national and international harmony.
Dr Basheer Ahmed is the chairman emeritus Muslim community center for human services Dallas TX. He can be reached at     mbahmed05@ yahoo.com

Sectarian Violence and Role of Muslim Ummah

Sectarian Violence | WorldMuslimCongress.com 
Link: http://worldmuslimcongress.blogspot.com/2016/04/sectarian-violence-and-role-of-muslim.html


Dr. M. Basheer Ahmed

Today the Muslim community is plagued by sectarianism. The majority of murdered Muslims were killed by other Muslims in the name of Islam. The ongoing civil war in Syria is an aggravated version of sectarian violence that has resulted in the death of thousands of people and millions of displaced Muslims, both Sunni and Shi’a. They are now refugees seeking asylum throughout the world. This sectarian dispute has led to the most massive international humanitarian crisis that the world has ever seen. How can anyone expect anybody to believe that Islam is the religion of peace? Because of this crisis, Islam is losing respect and credibility in the world.

The threat of this Islamic divide has now led to escalating violence and the loss of peace and security of many Muslims and the world beyond. The holy Quran stresses the unity of humanity generally on the basis that all human beings are the creatures of God. The holy Quran tells the prophet (pbuh) not to be associated with the beliefs of those who nurture sectarian beliefs and discard such persons or ideas. The Quran says: “Indeed, those who have divided their religion and become sects - you, [O Muhammad], are not [associated] with them in anything. Their affair is only [left] to Allah; then He will inform them about what they used to do.”(Al An ‘am: 159) Muslims have turned the entire Islamic world into a tribal society of the seventh century where warfare and bloodshed were understood to be the only solution of all the problems.

 It is impossible to get an entire community of 1.6 billion Muslims to think alike on all issues, but it is possible to have the coexistence of people with different beliefs to live in civilized communities in the world. The major challenge is to persuade people to stop killing one another because they have different interpretations of events in history that took place 1500 yrs ago. We should be cognizant of happenings, changes and challenges in our world, and specifically in today’s Muslim world. We should learn from the experiences of our Christian brothers who faced similar sectarian induced atrocities until a few hundred years ago. We know the Middle East’s rulers are not making things any better. They are not interested in any effort to close the divide. In fact, they are the ones solely responsible for the surge in sectarian violence.

Fortunately, we are not seeing a surge of Sectarianism in the United States. However, this menace is spreading into Europe and the rest of the world. Today, the media has a great influence on people. Young Muslims are learning more about Islam from the media, and unfortunately our Imams are not addressing this issue of Sectarianism and the violence affecting the Muslim communities. The silence of community leaders on the dangers of sectarianism and the resulting death and destruction in our birth countries is deafening. It should be our common cause of concern. It is difficult to accept that sectarianism within our own faith exists. And it is even more difficult to convince people that someone from another school of thought is still our equal in faith.
We should be proactive. We should not wait until our youth become fanatics.  We must ignore the political events which led to these conflicts. We must teach our children to develop harmonious relationships and to give dignity and respect to each other. We must accept responsibility to stop this bloodshed and promote peace among Muslims so that they are better equipped to cope with even the biggest menace -ISLAMOPHOBIA.

The Muslim world is in disarray and in a human crisis stage. Still, this is not the time to engage in blame games or focus on sectarian differences.  We simply cannot afford to ignore the severity of the current state of affairs. Today, it is imperative that we build bridges.  Despite all of our differences and divides, we should respect and tolerate one another. All of us have a responsibility to reject extremist interpretations and its associated political agenda. This is the challenge we need to face and be ready to take action.
“Verily never will God change the condition of people until they change it themselves” Qur’an 13:11

As we mentioned above, the critics of Islam point out that the most violence, the most killings, the most bombings, and an overall lack of peace is in Muslim countries. Even though Muslims vehemently insist that Islam is a religion of peace, we know that these violent practices are contrary to the teachings of Islam. But publicly it is impossible to equate Islam with peace when the very countries that are supposedly practicing Islam have this level of violence. It is therefore incumbent upon Muslim leaders to do what they can locally while thinking globally to ensure that, at least within our own circles, we unite to counter this violence, making it a model for other communities and the countries to follow suit.

We established an Organization Institute of Quranic Knowledge and inter/intrafaith Religious Acceptance(IQRA) to start a dialogue with community leaders of the Islamic faith, irrespective of their being Sunni or Shia or any other minority sect. The purpose of these dialogues is not theological debate; rather, it is a discussion of how as leaders we can relay to our followers that violence between the sects is counter-productive for all involved. Once we have created this model, we can only hope that others will replicate it on a global level.

If you believe the Mission of this Organization please join us in our efforts. For further information please contact Basheer Ahmed, M.D. at mbahmed05@yahoo.com

_______________________________________________________
M. Basheer Ahmed, M.D.
CHAIRMAN EMERITUS, MCC for Human Services

Education, Research and Service to the Humanity is the Greatest Worship

Saturday, April 2, 2016

Zaha Hadid - A Muslim woman on top of the world

 A Muslim woman on top of the world
We need more Icons like her, she has designed amazing buildings in China, Italy, Germany, UK and everywhere in the world including the U S of A.


Her Buildings : https://media.giphy.com/media/xThuW5ovZwcdVCl38I/giphy.gif 
Dame Zaha Mohammad Hadid, DBE was an Iraqi-born British architect. She was the first woman and the first Muslim to receive the Pritzker Architecture Prize, winning it in 2004. She received the Stirling Prize in 2010 and 2011. Wikipedia
Born: October 31, 1950, Baghdad, Iraq
Died: March 31, 2016, Miami, FL
Here is the full story at Slate with pictures of her incredible buildings.

Sunni Muslim, is that who I am?

Farrukh wrote, “This is a warning to all Muslims in this forum that Mike Ghouse’s religion is not Islam, he is Ismaili, and he is misguided person. If anyone needs more info about his religion, please let me know.”  
Really?
There are a few out there who do not even have the inclination to verify any information but pass it on as their authoritative information.   I wish he had written, “Mike Ghouse is a Muslim, and I am not sure which denomination he belongs to as I have not verified it,  but it appears that he fits in with everyone from Shia, Sunni, Bohra, Ahmadiyya, Ismaili, Alawite or what not.” And, “If anyone wants/need more information about his religion, visit the following sites.
Am-I-a-Sunni-Muslim www.MuslimSpeaker.comwww.WorldMuslimCongress.com ,www.QuraanToday.com,www.QuraanConference.com ,www.RamadanExclusive.com , www.ShariaLaws.com, and a whole lot more sites including www.TheGhousediary.com and the following video at Youtube; https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oZQ-FT8GfiQ

First of all, Prophet Muhammad knew only one group of people; Muslims! Prefixes like Sunni, Shia, Ahmadiyya, Bohra, Ismaili, WD Muhammad, Alawite, Deobandi, Barelvi, Ahl-e-Hadith, Ahl-e-bait etc., were not in his vocabulary nor can anyone ascribe these words to him – he did not use them.  
Secondly,  
All the Madhabs or denominations are natural outcomes of the society. Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) understood human nature and rightfully predicted the singular faith he taught will split, re-split and will continue to split and he chose the metaphorical number 72 do denote an infinite number.
He planted that seed, so we can learn to live with each other with our differences, we have to race in doing good things but not claim to be self righteousness and denigrate others, as that amounts to arrogance and God does not like those who are arrogant.  Only God knows who would be rank #1, #2, and #3,  and who would score A, B, C or D grades. Even if you are a sinner,  God may forgive you if you do one simple act of kindness towards other living beings like giving water to a thirsty cat, but most certainly fellow humans. Only God knows the full impact of our actions to his creation to bestow his grace.
My understanding is, you have to be a good human being who cares for his fellow beings and environment (that God has created). Wont’ you be happy and sing songs of your guests in your home if they meticulously take care of your property?  Or your employees who make sure your business is intact and taken care of?  Do you worry if the employee is Jewish, Hindu, Muslim, Christian or whoever, as long as he or she cares for your business? God does not worry how you worship him or what your religion is,  he appreciates it if you contribute towards preserving his creation,  and it comes through justness, fairness and kindness.
God does not discriminate one from the other, his criteria or question to us is, “Are you good to your fellow beings (humans and animals) and environment?”
[2:136] Say, “We believe in GOD, and in what was sent down to us, and in what was sent down to Abraham, Ismail, Isaac, Jacob, and the Patriarchs; and in what was given to Moses and Jesus, and all the prophets from their Lord. We make no distinction among any of them. To Him alone we are submitters.”
[4:152] As for those who believe in GOD and His messengers, and make no distinction among them, He will grant them their recompense. GOD is Forgiver, Most Merciful.
God loves us all, after all we are his creation, and because he cares about us, he offers guidance, and he sends a peace maker (call a messenger, prophet or any other word) to each community and each group to show them how to live in peace and harmony. Bhagvad Gita phrases it in another fashion, every time there is chaos in the society, someone from among you will emerge to restore righteousness. It could be a Shaman in the remote jungles of Amazon or a Prophet like Abraham, make no distinction, they serve God by preserving harmony, peace and justice in the community they live in.
Islam has always emphasized on serving fellow beings, God assures every one, yes every one, not to worry about the future, as long as you take care of his creation comprising life and and matter, he will take care of you.
[2:62] Surely, those who believe, those who are Jewish, the Christians, and the converts; anyone who (1) believes in GOD, and (2) believes in the Last Day, and (3) leads a righteous life, will receive their recompense from their Lord. They have nothing to fear, nor will they grieve.
[22:17] Those who believe, those who are Jewish, the converts, the Christians, the Zoroastrians, and the idol worshipers, GOD is the One who will judge among them on the Day of Resurrection. GOD witnesses all things.
[43:17] He also said, he made us into many tribes, races, nations and by extension religions and communities and the best ones among us are those who learn about each other, and when we do that, conflicts fade and solutions emerge.
The division
Quran remains the word of God; however, what God meant has been understood differently by different people. No one, including the great Imams of the time can ever claim that his understanding is the right one.  Remember, Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) did not assign any one to be the sole interpreter of Quran, he said, I am leaving this book to you, for you to understand. Please note, the Shia tradition differs on this issue, and we have to respect their understanding. If God is kind, just, merciful and fair, and Prophet is a mercy to mankind, then everything we will see in Quran would be nothing but common sense for common goodness, it is non-stop universalism. You are welcome to differ, Islam is too big of a religion (aalameen) to exclude any one of us.  
In the beginning, there was one singular interpretation for Christianity, Judaism, Buddhism, Hinduism, Sikhism, Islam and other faiths for many years.
In the 16th century,  Christianity split into Protestant and its many variations, each faith has followed the same natural path of amoeba, divide itself and keep multiplying.
In case of Islam, Prophet Muhammad knew only one thing; what he preached; One Islam. He did not even know that there was a Sunni Islam. I would say the same about all other prophets.
Then we reluctantly accepted the split of Shia and Sunni traditions, then came the 6 six schools of thoughts, we accepted that diversity as well, and now Islam has many traditions within, and we have accepted them with humility. Pluralism is an attitude of respecting the otherness of others. 
Allahu Akbar! (Check out Huffington Post – http://www.huffingtonpost.com/mike-ghouse/allahu-akbar-abused_b_860221.html ) it means humility, we are small, hence all of us small ones are on par.  A few among us are arrogant about our traditions and denigrate others.  What a shame, they assign themselves to play the role of a deputy of God or decider for him and pass judgments about others. That is shirk (diluting the dominion of God)  and it creates problem hence declared as the ugliest of all sins. That is we cannot judge other’s faith.
I have chosen to remain denomination less, but if you want to know what I pray like and sound like, it is reflective of Sunni tradition, only because I was raised with those values and it don’t mean superior or inferior, it is just my tuning.  If my parents had programmed me to be a Shia or an Ahmadiyya, I would have followed that path. We need to learn to respect each path, each one means dearly to the believer, as they say, beauty is in the eyes of the beholder, faith is in the heart of the believer.  My mother is dear to me as your mother is dear to you and Quran says, to you is your faith and to me is my faith (109.6 – that is not a radio station, but the Verse from the Quran) .
Heavens, I am comfortable with every which tradition a Muslim prays and I have been to every Mosque of almost all denominations including the three most revered ones in Mecca, Madinah and Jerusalem. (Check out http://www.RamadanExclusive.com)  Ironically, it would have been abidda, an invention if someone had called himself or herself a Shia or a Sunni during the life of the Prophet.  So, why should I call myself a Sunni?  I fully respect other people’s choices to belong to sub-groups and all are welcome. I am a Muslim, period! I have no walls between me and another Muslim, and no wall between me and another human. 
Indeed, the World Muslim congress was formed with that express purpose to create space for every Muslim, and the www.FoundationforPluralism.com was created for all humanity.  In the search box, you can plug in the name of any denomination, and you will find the articles, you can plug in the name of any commemoration or festival, you will find the information. It took me a lot of time and effort to make that happen, and that is my commitment to create a world where all humanity can get along by knowing each other. 
The role of Muslims is to contribute towards the well being of humanity, and to be the conflict mitigaters and goodwill nurturers. Our goal is to build a secure world for every human, our Jewish friends can understand that, as they believe in Tikkun Olam. Please read the mission statementhttp://worldmuslimcongress.blogspot.com/2012/01/mission-of-world-muslim-congress.html
This group is about Muslims and their civic responsibilities in creating a dignified religious, social and civic space for themselves in the community of faiths. We do not distinguish between a Sunni, Shia, Ahmadiyya, WD Muhammad, Ismaili, Bohra or the subsets of each group, all believe in God, the Prophet and the accountability of their actions and whoever calls himself or herself a Muslim is a Muslim to us. Currently we are blessed to have our Christian, Hindu, Jewish, Baha’i, Sikh and Buddhist friends among us to learn and share their perspective. This is our world and our God collectively.
The  WorldMuslimCongress@yahoogroups.com with  1700 members from around the world, and it is denomination-less, it is for all Muslims with full and equal respect to all denominations.Our focus is not the tiny differences, but the larger commonality.
World Muslim Congress is a think tank, all are welcome to participate in the discussions, and our scope is limited and defined in our mission statement. Currently, we have 1700 Members worldwide with no membership fee.
To join the group that has been around since 2004, and prior to that it was called the Muslim Agenda from 2002 onwards, send an email to: WorldMuslimCongress-Subscribe@yahoogroups.com
Dr. Mike Ghouse is a community consultant, social scientist, thinker, writer, news maker,Interfaith Wedding officiant, and a speaker on PluralismInterfaithIslam,politicsterrorism,human rightsIndiaIsrael-Palestine, motivation, and foreign policy. He is committed to building cohesive societies and offers pluralistic solutions on issues of the day. Visit him (63 links) atwww.MikeGhouse.net andwww.TheGhousediary.com for his exclusive writings.

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Email to: SpeakerMikeGhouse@gmail.com

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quraan burning

Planned Muslim Response to Qur'an Burning by Pastor Jones on September 11 in Mulberry, Florida

PRESS RELEASE
August 19, 2013| Dallas, Texas

Mike Ghouse
Text/Talk: (214) 325-1916
MikeGhouse@aol.com

Mirza A Beg
(205) 454-8797
mirza.a.beg@gmail.com

www.WorldMuslimCongress.com


PLANNED MUSLIMS RESPONSE TO QUR'AN BURNING BY PASTOR JONES ON 9/11/13 IN MULBERRY, FLORIDA

We as Muslims plan to respond to pastor Terry Jones' planned burning of 3000 copies of Quran on September 11, 2013 in positive terms.

Our response - we will reclaim the standard of behavior practiced by the Prophet concerning “scurrilous and hostile criticism of the Qur’an” (Muhammad Asad Translation Note 31, verse 41:34). It was "To overcome evil with good is good, and to resist evil by evil is evil." It is also strongly enjoined in the Qur’an in the same verse 41:34, “Good and evil deeds are not equal. Repel evil with what is better; then you will see that one who was once your enemy has become your dearest friend.”

God willing Muslims will follow the divine guidance and pray for the restoration of Goodwill, and on that day many Muslim organizations will go on a “blood drive” to save lives and serve humanity with kindness.

We invite fellow Americans of all faiths, races, and ethnicities to join us to rededicate the pledge, “One nation under God”, and to build a cohesive America where no American has to live in apprehension, discomfort or fear of fellow Americans. This event is a substitute for our 10th Annual Unity Day Celebration (www.UnitydayUSA.com) held in Dallas, but now it will be at Mulberry, Florida.

Unwittingly Pastor Jones has done us a favor by invigorating us by his decision to burn nearly 3000 copies Quran on September 11, 2013. Obviously he is not satisfied by the notoriety he garnered by burning one Qur'an last year.

As Muslims and citizens we honor the free speech guaranteed in our constitution. We have no intentions to criticize, condemn or oppose Pastor Terry Jones' freedom of expression. Instead, we will be donating blood and praying for goodness to permeate in our society.

We plan to follow Jesus Christ (pbuh), a revered prophet in Islam as well as Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) – that of mitigating the conflicts and nurturing good will for the common good of the society.

We hope, this event and the message will remind Muslims elsewhere in the world as well, that violence is not the way. Muslims, who react violently to senseless provocation, should realize that, violence causes more violence, and besmirches the name of the religion that we hold so dear. We believe that Prophet Muhammad was a mercy to the mankind, and we ought to practice what we believe and preach. We must not insult Islam by the negative reactions of a few.

We can only hope it will bring about a change in the attitude of the followers of Pastor Jones, and in the behavior of those Muslims who reacted violently the last time Pastor sought notoriety – We hope this small step towards a bridge to peaceful coexistence would propel us towards building a cohesive society.

Like most Americans a majority of Muslims quietly go about their own business, but it is time to speak up and take positive action instead of negative reaction. May this message of peace and goodwill reverberate and reach many shores.

Lastly, we appreciate the Citizens of Mulberry, Florida, Honorable Mayor George Hatch, City Commissioners, police and Fire Chiefs for handing this situation very well. This will add a ‘feather of peace’ in the City’s reputation. We hope Mulberry will be a catalyst in showing the way in handling conflict with dignity and peace.

We thank the Media for giving value to the work towards peace rather than conflict.






URL- http://worldmuslimcongress.blogspot.com/2013/08/planned-muslim-response-to-quran_18.html



Thank you.

CIVIL DIALOGUE

The people in Dallas are making an effort to understand and clean their own hearts first, when we are free from bias, it would be easy to share that with others. Islam teaches us in so many ways to "respect the otherness of others" and it is time we find simple practical ways of doing it.