Friday, July 18, 2008

Interfaith dialogue in Saudi Arabia

The following letter was sent to the arab news, in reference to their article listed at; Articles at:

Bismillah, this is a good beginning.

Saudi Arabia, one of the most conservative societies is opening up to people of other faiths. The process began in 2005 when Saudi Emissaries started branching out all over the world to explore interfaith. In Dallas per the request of a Saudi minister, I had arranged for a 20 member meeting from Jewish, Islamic and Christian groups as an initial step towards including all faiths in the near future. Since then the Saudi Kingdom has taken series of steps in this direction culminating in interfaith dialogue series. First it was the same three groups; Judaism, Christianity and Islam and now, I am pleased it has included Hinduism and Buddhism.

I am further pleased to read the following statements “Abdullah Al-Turki, secretary-general of the MWL, said, “The aim of the conference is for us to get to know each other and look for ways to cooperate.” And their focus is on “humanitarian issues and challenges facing the world”. He further adds “that the conference would look at social and ethnic conflicts, environmental issues, the breakdown of the family and militant violence around the world.” He added the conferences would initially not focus on theological issues.

Years ago, I had a daily radio show called “Wisdom of Religion, all the beautiful religions” which ran for full two years. Our focus was on the message of each one of the religions and how the common man on the street could relate with the essence of each faith.

God willing, the World Muslim Congress, the Memnosyne Foundation and the Foundation for pluralism from Dallas will work towards creating a better world of co-existence.

Jazak Allah Khair

Mike Ghouse

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Speakers on Pluralism & Interfaith

What Qualifies one to speak on Interfaith and Pluralism*

Interfaith is about relationship between faiths, where as
Pluralism is about co-existence be it theists, atheists, governance or politics.

We have carefully selected the speakers, and I believe, none of them have bias or prejudice towards people of other faiths, race, ethniciy or any other uniqueness.

We are developing a list of speakers who believe “My faith is dear to me, as other's faith is dear to them." and, "I believe in my faith, it works for me and I give the same value to others who believe in their faith without taking away any divinity in them."

To be religious is to be spiritual and to be in tune with the creation, where one feels a sense of oneness with the universe, everything belongs to one and one belongs to all. A true state of liberation and the state of conflictlessness prevails in one's heart and mind. Each one of us can aspire for that ideal and achieve a relative sense of oneness with our own failings and flaws with relative humility.

Spirituality and Arrogance are inversely proportional to each other, ideally, they are mutually exclusive elements. A true religious person appreciates the religiosity and divinity of the other as he or she accords oneself with no arrogance.

We have to build bridges, mitigate conflicts and work for a world of co-existence. Honoring other traditions does not diminish divinity of one's own faith. To be religious is to see the creator in all and be peace makers and justice workers.

These speakers will will have a respectful disposition towards fellow beings regardless of other's theistic, atheistic, agnostic, poly or monotheistic traditions. They will promote appreciation of diversity as a divine design. The cause of all life has origins in the same source, it is the same creator and sustainer. Rabbi Gordis says it well " We have to honor the otherness of other without missionizing thoughts" a certain source of irreligiousness.

Each one of the speaker believes in his or her faith but does not allow the arrogance to creep in to claim that his/her's is the only way and others are inferior. Please share the names of the persons who share these ideals, but are not perfect. No one is.

If we can learn to accept and respect every which way one worships the divine, then conflicts fade and solutions emerge; co-existence in harmony with life and matter.

National interfaith Speakers will be listed at and the Dallas/ Fort Worth Metroplex Speakers are listed at:

Here is the list of speakers:
Please note that if the speakers are biased towards others, we will not list their names.

Mike Ghouse
(214) 325-1916
Topics: Pluralism, Terrorism, Essence of Religions, Interfaith, Multi-culturism &\; Islam Profile:
Dr. Harbans Lal,
817-446-8757, Mob. 817-846-8630
Topics: Interfaith and Sikh Tradition

Rev. Marylou Bishop-GhystPhone: 214-324-1125
Topics: Christianity's path, religious prejudice

Rev. Petra Weldes
Profile: Scroll down please


Marylou Ghyst

1) Christianity's Three Paths
2) Mysticism and Recognizing Guidance
3) Jesus' Concept of God and of Heaven on Earth
4) The Keys to Jesus' Healing Power; Self-Healing
5) Adam & Eve (the second creation story -- not literal -- but deeply spiritual).
6) 15 Areas of Prejudice in this country

Profile: Marylou is a native of Denver, Colorado. At age 4, she became aware of her mission in life -- to be a doctor. Ten years later at 14, although under age, she persuaded Mercy Hospital to hire her as a nurse's aide. At 16, she graduated from a vocational nursing school. About the same time, she observed a TV minister who was "doctoring" to the emotional needs of people. Instantly she recognized that was the kind of doctor she wanted to be. She left nursing behind, and worked for attorneys for the next 20 years which she describes as one of her most profound learning experiences. She then studied art for 5 years, learning to paint in water color and oil. At this time, in mid-life, she received her "calling." Most Christian ministers are aware of the exact moment when God calls them to ministry, and she said "yes" to the call.

She graduated from Unity School of Christianity in Missouri as a Licensed Teacher, and was ordained a minister at Unity Temple in New Orleans. She co-founded Unity Church in Garland, now Unity Church of Sachse, from which she retired in 2006. She's now committed to interfaith. and is in the process of writing her fifth book, The Teachings of Jesus in Plain English. She is married and has no children.