Friday, March 29, 2013

A Muslim Pluralist Celebrates Easter

A MUSLIM PLURALIST CELEBRATES EASTER

Whether Jesus was buried and resurrected, or taken up by God, faith in him is shared by more than half of the world inclusive of Muslims and Christians. Whether you believe in Jesus or not, his message of love thy enemy, love thy neighbor and forgive the other will set us free. Can we celebrate that message?
To this Muslim, Easter represents resurrection of Jesus through his message, and Easter is a symbolic day to celebrate that message.
 
 
 
 
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Saturday, March 16, 2013

Muslims Condemn brutal attacks on Hindus and Hindu Temples by Muslims in Bangladesh

Friday, March 15, 2013 | PRESS RELEASE | 3 ACTION ITEMS
Muslims Condemn brutal attacks on Hindus and Hindu Temples by Muslims in Bangladesh; this goes against the very grain of Islam. The culprits must be punished to restore trust and justice to the Hindus of Bangladesh.

The following press release is an expression of Muslims to register their protest, repentance and desire to restore trust among the Hindus of Bangladesh who are harassed and under attacks. This is not acceptable in Islam. 

We condemn these disgusting acts of Muslims among us, who are hell bent on hurting fellow Bangladeshis, because they are Hindus. These acts go against the very essence of Quran to treat every human, animal and the environment with dignity. Quran could not be clearer than this, “killing one person is like killing the whole humanity, and saving one life is like saving the entire  mankind.”    


The insane attacks on Hindus are referenced in several reports below, please read different reports to get the full picture, a commission must be established to report the findings.

The majority of Muslims are peace loving, however a few among us are not, and it is our responsibility to not let those few tarnish the name of our religion. We need to do our Jihad, and our struggle to bring justice and trust in the society. 

In the interest of containing, cornering and mitigating the conflict, we urge the Bangladeshi Government to take all the precautions to single out the individuals responsible for the chaos.

We appeal to the authorities, not to arrest the miscreants as Muslims or members of any of the religious or political organizations but as Individuals. Per Quran and per any civil law, the individual alone is responsible for his acts, and not his family members, mayor of his town, Imam of his Mosque, Bangladesh or Islam in this case. If we follow this wisdom, we will contain the problem to individuals and prevent further aggravation by pitting one group against the other.

The success of a nation depends when her citizens feel secure; in this case, it is the duty of the state to ensure the safety of Hindus, Buddhist, Shia, Ahmadiyya, Christian and other minorities.
It is also the obligation of the Bangladeshi majority to continue to speak up against the brutal treatment of fellow Bangladeshis who are Hindu. Indeed, the safety of a community is the responsibility of the majority.  

Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) established a government in Medina, where no Jew, Christian or others were to feel insecure. He further gave one of the strongest instructions to Muslims – If any one of you is unjust to the other, By God, on the Day of Judgment, I will stand up against you in support of the victims. As a Muslim, I ask Muslims to come together to take these individual actions: 

1. Call the embassies and ask them to urge their Government to protect the Hindus immediately:
Washington DC at (202) 244-0183 – Fax (202) 244-2771http://www.bdembassyusa.org/ 
Ottawa, Canada at (613)-236-0138-39 – Fax 
(613)-567-3213  http://www.bdhc.org/ 
and or Bangladeshi Embassy in the your country 

Home Ministry in Bangladesh at  
http://www.mha.gov.bd/  Dr. Muhiuddin Khan Alamgir, Minister, Phone Number 7169069 – email mkalamgir@yahoo.com   

2. Request the Government to restore the damaged homes of the Bangladeshi Hindus.

3. Request a commission of inquiry and a dialogue to rebuild cohesiveness in the Bangladeshi society, where no Bangladeshi has to live in fear of the other.

Donate whatever you can to re-build the demolished Hindu temples; we will have to find a reliable Organization in Bangladesh to ensure funds will be used strictly to rebuild the temples. The first $100.00 will come from the World Muslim Congress. We will set up a fund with trustees from Muslim, Hindu, Buddhist and Christian Members and seek support from the Bangladeshi Organizations in Dallas.

We have a responsibility to ensure the safety of every Citizen. We (the Muslims) should be the Amins of the world, where Hindus, Christians, Jews, Buddhists, Atheists and all others trust us to be just, fair and truthful. They should feel safe around us, for us to be the Amins in fulfilling the first foundational Sunnah of the prophet.

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  • Images of atrocities against Hindus


Mike Ghouse, President
World Muslim Congress
Foundation for Pluralism
2665 Villa Creek Dr, Suite 206
Dallas, TX 75234
(214) 325-1916 – text/talk

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YOU CAN ALSO FAX/ E MAIL / HERE IS A SAMPLE.   

Date:
Name:

Your Excellency,

I am concerned about the plight of Hindus in Bangladesh, and request you to ask your Government to protect the Hindus immediately. Please initiate a commission to find the facts and work on restoring damages temples and homes of the Hindu Bangladeshis. I also urge a national and local dialogue to begin in building a cohesive Bangladesh, where no Bangladeshi has to live in the fear of other.

Your Name:
Email:
Address/City/Zip

Muslims welcome Pope Francis

Dallas, Texas, March 13, 2013 – The World Muslim Congress, a think tank, and the Foundation for Pluralism congratulate the new Pope, Pope Francis.


“I hope he heralds a new beginning for building a better world. In behalf of the people of faith or no faith, and my faith Islam, I welcome the Pope and make ourselves available to jump at his call for creating a peace in the world, where no human has to live in fear of the others, let the world be the new kingdom of heaven where we all feel safe and secure with each other. Amen”

There are a few deeply rooted conflicts among the Muslim-Christian, and Jewish-Christian communities that are the root cause of much of the conflict in the world, they have been simmering within the hearts and minds of the Christians, Muslims and Jews, and flare up now and then in difficult expressions.

The world needs a powerful personality to urge Muslims and Christians to accept the otherness of the other without the temptation to correct the other. It needs a strong personality that can absolve Jews from the myths ascribed to them. It needs a pope who is a blessed peacemaker and extends his embrace to the Pagans, Hindus and all others who do not worship or worship God in their own way. We are all children of God and honoring each other is honoring the creator.

He has got to initiate a dialogue on same sex marriage, women priesthood, birth control, intrafaith, and interfaith relations.


The pope is singularly the most important person on the world stage besides the President of the United States who can affect positive or negative outcomes. He can aggravate the conflicts or mitigate them and earn the blessings of Jesus – Blessed are the peacemakers.

We pray that Pope Francis ushers us into a new era of dialogue and respect for each other, Amen.


Mike Ghouse
World Muslim Congress
Foundation for Pluralism

2665 Villa Creek Dr, Suite 206
Dallas, TX 75234
(214) 325-1916 – text or phone
SpeakerMikeGhouse@gmail.com
Mike Ghouse is a speaker, thinker and a writer on pluralism, politics, peace, Islam,Israel, India, interfaith, and cohesion at work place. He is committed to building aCohesive America and offers pluralistic solutions on issues of the day atwww.TheGhousediary.com. He believes in Standing up for others and has done that throughout his life as an activist. Mike has a presence on national and local TV, Radio and Print Media. He is a frequent guest on Sean Hannity show on Fox TV, and a commentator on national radio networks, he contributes weekly to the Texas Faith Column at Dallas Morning News; fortnightly at Huffington post; and several other periodicals across the world. His personal site www.MikeGhouse.net indexes all his work through many links.

Brouhaha over Ahmedinejad consoling Chavez’s mother, it angers Iranian clerics.

The photo, released by Venezuela's Miraflores Press Office, shows Elena FrĂ­as' right hand clutching Ahmadinejad's left, her head against his, as they stand near the flag-draped coffin of her son at a military academy in Caracas, Venezuela, on Friday.

Yahoo reports, "The image drew the immediate fury of Tehran's religious conservatives. "No unrelated women can be touched unless she is drowning at sea or needs medical treatment," Hojat al-Islam Hossein Ibrahimi, a cleric at the Society of Militant Clergy, said, according to Iran's Al-Monitor."





Pamela Geller, America's profiteer from maligning Islam will have a hay day tomorrow, she profits from selling hate to the dumbos out there. But some Rabbi will tell her to shut up; it is not the creeping Muslim Brotherhood thing, but a Rabbi thing also. She has done many stupid things in the past, like jumping all over Muslims for the Halal slaughter of Animals, the Rabbis (and I believe the ADL also) had to tell her to shut up that is precisely a Jewish practice. In December 2012, I was on Fox News twice (Not Hannity) telling that it was a wrong idea to put billboards in the subways, and mentioned the consequence of a nutcase making threats to a Muslim woman, sadly a Hindu man was killed.

In February, on Hannity she wrote on her site that she is going to drag down this Islamist guy Mike Ghouse, fortunately I was able to shut her up and drag her down on Hannity show, so she changes my title from Islamist to a Moderate Muslim the next day.  I like Pamela's passion, she and I have no ill-will or animosity between us we are good and civil to each other. If she can apply that in building peace she will be successful. 

As a pluralist, I always ask is this act exclusive to one community or does the shoe fits the others as well.  In this case, is not hugging or handshaking exclusive to Muslims?  Do others hold similar views? Hold it before you laugh at the Iranian religious clergy, more than likely your Orthodox Jewish Rabbi, Sikh Gyani, Buddhist Monk, Hindu Pundit and few Christian priests and others will not even shake hands with a woman.  I was even shocked to hear Congressman Ron Paul say, "I will not travel with an un-related woman" during the campaign trial last year.

It is neither a bad practice nor a good one. It is just a precautionary practice. Most of the abuse of women occurs from close relatives and the people they trust, given that it is safer to keep physical contact out of the relationship.

It also depends on how comfortable you are with the others. Personally, I am comfortable with hugs with men and women equally, and hesitation never crawls through my mind.

My Jewish friend Muriel and I always give a hug, then she laughs at me, how dare you are, a Muslim giving a hug to a Jewish princess? In one of the Unity Day events some seven eight years ago, I was under the weather, so I kept my distance, one lady walked up for the hug, and I held back… she started telling you Muslims don't hug women… I said; hold it dear, I am holding back because I have colds. You and I have hugged far too many times before for you to draw such conclusions. 

Our Imams and Rabbis are super careful in shaking hands or hugging women, and we need to respect their space.

After I married Yasmeen, we went to several of her friend's houses and when some pictures were taken, I was my usual self, and put my hand over the shoulders of her friends, forgetting the difference in culture, my wife reminded me that it is not a comfortable thing to do. It was re-learning to me, no one was ever uncomfortable with me before. The guy who teaches multi-culturalism goofed up himself. Ha!


- - - - - -
Mike Ghouse is a speaker, thinker and a writer on pluralism, politics, peace, Islam,Israel, India, interfaith, and cohesion at work place. He is committed to building aCohesive America and offers pluralistic solutions on issues of the day atwww.TheGhousediary.com. He believes in Standing up for others and has done that throughout his life as an activist. Mike has a presence on national and local TV, Radio and Print Media. He is a frequent guest on Sean Hannity show on Fox TV, and a commentator on national radio networks, he contributes weekly to the Texas Faith Column at Dallas Morning News; fortnightly at Huffington post; and several other periodicals across the world. His personal site www.MikeGhouse.net indexes all his work through many links.

Muslims Condemn acts of Violence against Christians in Pakistan, and assert that this not an act of Islam.

The following Petition is an expression of Muslims and Muslim Organizations toregister their protest, repentance and restoration of Justice.

URL- http://worldmuslimcongress.blogspot.com/2013/03/muslims-condemn-acts-of-violence.html

March 9, 2013 - Lahore, Pakistan, A mob of Muslims burnt down about 150 homes of Christians living in Joseph Town near Lahore, and the carnage continues. “As Muslims, we are embarrassed and ashamed of these men who call themselves Muslims, we condemn these acts unequivocally.” commented Mike Ghouse who heads the World Muslim Congress, a think tank in Dallas, Texas.

The Muslim majority is deeply concerned about it. We urge Pakistani Muslim Americans in particular, and Muslims around the world in General to create a fund to rehabilitate the families who have lost their homes, that is the least we can do as repentance.
 

Muslims at large are at fault for allowing the abuse of blasphemy laws in Pakistan, which is anathema to the Character of Prophet Muhammad (pbuh), regarded as mercy to the mankind. It is time for Muslims to mean it.

Do Prophet, Quran and God need our protection?

What do parents do when their child runs out on the street? Protect, protect and protect from all the perceived threats. They do that because their child is not capable of defending him or herself from the street bullies.  What do you do when you little daughter is in conflict with the otherl? You protect, protect and protect.

If we believe that the Prophet needs our protection, then we are dead wrong. He has been around and will be there through eternity. As Muslims, we need to believe in him, he is not going anywhere nor will he be hurt or harmed with any insults.

Don’t we proudly talk about Hazrat Umar’s examples of justice? It is time to believe and act now.

The 2nd Caliph of Islam Umar was known for Justice. Once, he refused to punish a thief, as he saw that the state fell short of the responsibility to create a society where the man did not have to steal food to feed his hungry kids, the very basic needs of life.  

The condition for Christians in Pakistan is shameful.

Asia Bibi was denied water from a public source because an arrogant Muslim woman was drawing the water from the same well at that time.  That is most egregious insult; denial of water.  What were her choices? Even if she had cursed the arrogant Muslim lady, her religion or her prophet, Hazrat Umar would have forgiven her due to circumstances. Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) would have gone a step further; he would have set a model for Muslims to follow. He would not only have forgiven her, but perhaps carried her water to her home.  After all he was Rahmatul Aalameen, a mercy to mankind, was he not?

There was another incident, where an Imam burnt a page from Quran to frame a Christian, he should have been nailed.

Prophet is not going anywhere.

Islam is not going anywhere; prophet is not going anywhere, and by opening ourselves up to criticism, we will learn a lot more about our faith than we would ever know. We need to move away from intolerance to acceptance of a different point of view without having to agree with it. Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) lived through it and Muslims can learn from his examples.

 Criticism can fade away or rain on us depending on how Muslims respond to it.  Lack of conviction in one's faith breeds intolerance towards criticism, whereas firmness in faith can lead us to learn from criticism, explore the infinite wisdom and realize the strength of our faith (Imaan); a worthy feeling to have, instead of living in doubt and shooing criticism away.

 Pastor Jeffress of Dallas called the Quran, a false book written by the false prophet. We looked at the examples of the prophet and followed his graceful model and held an unusual Quran conference with non-Muslim clergy on the panel to address the issue. A full accounting of the event, including extensive media interviews and the program in details is at www.QuraanConference.com

When you have an issue with your spouse and child, you don't scream and shut them down; the problem will not go away unless you face it and solve the issue. When people accept the solutions willingly, we will have peace. The Christians, Shia, Ahmadiyya, Hindus, Sikhs and other minorities in Pakistan need to feel safe. They must be heard and justice must be served, isn't Islam is all about that?

I urge fellow Muslims to be open to all the criticism with confidence, don't shut it, and let freedom of speech be the corner stone of Islam. Islam stands on its own; it does not need our defense, and it is silly to protect God or the Prophet, they are not weaklings or our property to protect, they belong to the whole universe, don't they?

 If they curse the prophet, prophet is not going to be cursed, have the strength in your faith and return badness with Good; we know all the examples of his work. When you hear someone curse the prophet, just say I am sorry you feel that way, but if you wish to seek the truth, find it on your own or I will connect you with someone who can guide you, if you don't that is your choice and nothing will come off me or the prophet, your words do not have the power to reduce Islam or the prophet, I will pray peace of mind to you. 

Islam is not going anywhere, prophet is not going anywhere, and by opening up you will enjoy your Imaan (faith) immensely with genuine admiration for its wisdom. I thank Allah for helping me see the light and beauty of Islam, and you can too.

This petition is authored by Mike Ghouse of World Muslim Congress and initially supported by the following Muslim Organizations.  

World Muslim Congress, United States
MCC for Human Services Texas

Ninteen Organization, United States


REFERENCES - Standing up for humanity
http://www.worldmuslimcongress.blogspot.com/2013/03/sunni-muslims-at-shia-and-ahmadiyya.html

Sunni Muslims at Shia and Ahmadiyya Moques

Muslims take the 2nd step - Sunnis visit Shia and Ahmadiyya Mosques
http://worldmuslimcongress.blogspot.com/2013/03/sunni-muslims-at-shia-and-ahmadiyya.html


Last night, an email was sent to Muslims of all denominations, the Sunni Muslims in particular were asked to make an effort to attend the Friday prayers at a Shia or Ahmadiyya Mosques as a symbol of solidarity with them.

I  was pleased with the calls from around the world and emails from Baghdad, Lahore, Kuala Lumpur and here in the United states. Thank God, many are going to different mosques.

I went to the Momin Center in Irving, Texas. The Imam delivered a great Khutba (sermon) about having faith in God, and asking God for help. He likened God to the CEO of a mega corporation- he said,  if you know the boss, life becomes easy for you and added, if you are with God, he makes the life easy for you.

The Imam acknowledged the presences of Sunni Muslims attending the Juma prayers in solidarity with the Shia Muslims.



The appeal read.

If you are a Sunni Muslim, make an effort to attend the Friday prayers at a Shia or Ahmadiyya Mosques -more about it. To find a Shia Mosque in the United States go to http://www.islamicfinder.org/  and in Dallas, go to www.DallasMuslimCenter.com

The 1st step was taken on Thursday, February 26, 2013 and here are the three different reports of the event, and the video will be out in a few days and will be posted here as well.



  •     Video to be added:
The You are probably aware of the efforts in bringing people of different denominations together.  Now, for the the first time in the United States, we were able to carry a formal  dialogue between Shia, Sunni, Ahmadiyya and WD Muhammad denominations in an academic setting at the Boniuk Center of Rice University.

Here are the two emails worth reading;
 …………………. ………..

Shia mosque is ok. I have said many prayers there but I will go to Ahmadiyyah mosque but to respectfully observe their service :) one has to make a serious case to engage Ahmadiyyah into mainstream - unless they ractify a fundamental belief i.e. No prophet after Mohammad (PBUH)
 …………………. ………..

 Dear Mohammedbhai,

I just prayed at Ahmediyya mosque in Nairobi a month back, because our homoeopath is an Ahmedi.

I have also just been invited by Nazim A. to go to Jaffery's to pray and to go visit the mausoleums in Najaf and Kerbala with the Ithna'asheri group. They and the Bohoras, in my experience, know more about the early history and the passions of Hadhrat Bibi Fatima (as), Hadhrat Hassan, Hadhrat Ali (as) and Hadhrat Hussein (as) and those who held to them than we do, as Khoja Ismailis.

It's good to do this. The Ahmadiyya mosque is really peaceful.

 REFERENCES:
 


Mike Ghouse is a speaker, thinker and a writer committed to building cohesive societies. 
www.MikeGhouse.net