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Books and Documents

Interfaith Dialogue

Holocaust: Muslim Schindlers in Focus
Abdulateef Al-Mulhim

During the Holocaust, it wasn’t Jewish lives that were saved by Muslims. The Sarajevo Haggadah, a 600-year-old manuscript, which was hidden from the Nazis, was given to a Muslim cleric to hide it. Interestingly, he kept it under the floor of a mosque until the war ended. All these events tell us that our creator had created us to help each other not hurt each other. And now, we saw 65 years of attacks and counterattacks and no peace is achieved....

 

'No Religion' Is World's Third-Largest Religious Group after Christians, Muslims According To Pew Study
Tom Heneghan

There are about 1.6 billion Muslims around the world, or 23 percent of the global population. "The overwhelming majority (87-90 percent) are Sunnis, about 10-13 percent are Shia Muslims," the study said. Among the 1.1 billion unaffiliated people around the world, over 700 million, or 62 percent of them, live in China alone, where they make up 52.2 percent of the Chinese population....

 

Striving for Peace and Amity: Asghar Ali Engineer’s Struggle for Preservation of Plural Ethos
Asghar Ali Engineer

His work, to be referred below, shows that he took a serious interest in understanding the  dynamics of communal violence, he must have spent days in and days out, investigating the communal riots, their aftermath and their impact on the social and political affairs. He can easily be credited with being the major scholar-activist who pioneered this area of investigation. He spent enormous energy to investigate and analyze the communal violence in India....

 

In Life and Words, Boston’s Muslim Leader Bridges Cultures
William Suhaib Webb

A dominant theme of Webb’s ministry is that Muslims can live faithful lives in contemporary America, and that they also have an obligation to participate — civically, culturally, and politically.....

 

“We’re becoming so diverse, and that’s not going away,” Damaj said. “We need to have a sense of community. We’re one community. But how can you have that sense of community if you don’t get to know each other?”...

There are of course differences among these ideas of freedom, because conception of truth differs among them. But the similarities far outweigh the differences. All these three views differentiate between lower and higher form of freedom: the higher being freedom from fear and ignorance, a freedom that allows us to see greater truth, greater than just being free to act as one wishes......

 

Terrorism and the other Religions
Juan Cole

It takes a peculiar sort of blindness to see Christians of European heritage as “nice” and Muslims and inherently violent, given the twentieth century death toll I mentioned above. Human beings are human beings and the species is too young and too interconnected to have differentiated much from group to group.....

 

Interfaith Disappointments
Mike Ghouse

The biggest disappointment in the interfaith world comes when your friends, who are usually rational in their approach to say this with ease, “These acts of terrorism are done in the name of Islam. I do not think the others were done in the name of Christianity etc. With the exception of Islam, other Religions variable accepts responsibility for the actions of their followers.” or this from an immigrant who has carried the baggage from overseas to this land,...

The Maulana Who Loved Krishna (Complete Text)
C M Naim

His first Bhasha poem, however, is not about Krishna. Dated 2 October 1923, it praises his Sufi masters in the Quadiri Silsila, beginning with Hazrat Abdul Quadir Jilani of Baghdad, the head of the Quadiri order, and continuing on, as protocol demanded, to Shah Abdur Razzaq of Bansa, whom all the people of Firangi Mahal considered their immediate spiritual master, and Shah Abdul Wahhab of Firangi Mahal, with whom Hasrat had his own direct spiritual link. As one reads the five verses, one immediately notices the vividly “feminine” persona – as distinct from the “masculine” voice prevalent in Urdu lyrical poetry – that the poet adopted. It strongly suggests that, for Hasrat, the shift to Bhasha from Urdu really reflected a shift in the manner of spiritual devotion....

Top-level Muslims too have to reciprocate in the spirit of the salaam (act of extending peace and brotherhood). Jews, Christians and Muslims are from the same Abrahamic roots and they are referred to as “People of the Book” in the Quran, meaning people who believe in the same line of divine revelations....

 

Vivekananda’s Legacy of Universalism
Vivekanand

The central idea in the life and teaching of Vivekananda was religious universalism. In the eyes of those who believed in universalism, there was no difference between the followers of different religions. All religions are universal — equal and true. Vivekananda, however, argued that in Hinduism, universalism found ideal articulation. And was hence a leader in spiritual matters.....

An 'Esplanade of the Religions' Under Construction in France, a Holy Quarter Includes a Mosque, a Synagogue, a Laotian and a Taiwanese Buddhist Pagoda
Scott Sayare

And so at the edge of town, an “Esplanade of the Religions” is under construction, a sort of holy quarter in the fields that includes a mosque, a synagogue, a Laotian Buddhist pagoda and a $20 million Taiwanese Buddhist temple, said to be Europe’s largest. Nearby, a small cross already overlooks the city from atop the 115-foot glass spire of an enormous Roman Catholic Church, built at the turn of the century about a mile from the old chapel....

 

Marrying Out of the Faith
Stanley Fish

She just wants prospective interfaith couples to know that it is work that love doesn’t conquer all, that “a rocky road may lie ahead of them” and that they “need to think in practical terms about their faith differences— how it will affect the way they spend their time, their money, and the way they want to raise their kids.” Her message is that if you don’t make the mistake of thinking it will be a bed of roses,...

Pope Extends Hand of Friendship to 'Muslim Brothers and Sisters' During Good Friday Rite
Pope Francis

Pope Francis reached out in friendship to "so many Muslim brothers and sisters" during a Good Friday procession dedicated to the suffering of Christians from terrorism, war and religious fanaticism in the Middle East. The new pontiff, who has rankled traditionalists by rejecting many trappings of his office, mostly stuck to the traditional script during the night-time Way of the Cross procession at Rome's Colosseum, one of the most dramatic rituals of Holy Week.....

With the narrations regarding the marriage of Mary to Prophet Muhammad in Paradise weak, the question is: where did this story originate? Enter Eulogius of Cordova, a Spanish Christian writer and (so-called) martyr who lived during the 800s in Muslim-ruled Andalusia (he was beheaded around 859CE). In his book, Saracens: Islam in the Medieval European Imagination (p. 93), John V. Tolan writes, Eulogius deforms Muhammad's biography to fit the standard biographies of Antichrist....

 

A Muslim Pluralist Celebrates Easter
Mike Ghouse

The first response from a few Muslims would be "no, no and no!" Muslims cannot celebrate resurrection of Jesus Christ. Jesus did not die, he and his message lives on! They would argue: To be a Muslim, one has to believe in Christ, the one who brings life to the dead, the one who has the healing powers, and one who is likened to the Morning star that brings the good news. He will come back as the Messiah to close the chapter of human suffering and bring salvation to mankind by reconnecting them with God....

Religion, Media and Economy
Atle Hetland

Let me begin with religious news. After all, today is Easter Sunday, one of the major feasts in the Christian calendar, marked in memory of the crucifixion of Jesus (Isa). Muslims do not believe Jesus died on the cross. However, 50 days after Easter, Christians and Muslims mark Jesus’ ascension to heaven. In both religions, Jesus is a prophet, and Christians add that he is the Son of God, which many believe literally. The term was commonly used for, particularly, spiritual and holy men at the time.....

 

Kill the Child, Spare the Lamb
Robert Scheer

I know that any hint of barbarism in the Judeo-Christian heritage is considered heresy in even the most enlightened circles—but it was the article in The New York Times on the vegan Seder that got me going. That and another one in The Wall Street Journal about spicing up the Passover feast “by throwing toy frogs at one another and having bugs,…

 

Can The Gap Between The Religious And The Non-Religious Be Bridged, When The Debate Itself Is So Attention-Getting?
Frans De Wall

If some religions are worse than others, then some must be better. I’d love to hear the atheist perspective on what makes for a good religion or the reason why different religions support different moralities. Could it be that religion and culture interact to the point that there is no universal morality? Instead of pondering such problems, audiences are stirred up to abhor practices alien to them, which is about as easy as making them squirm at a chain-saw murder.....

Thesis, Antithesis, Synthesis-The Numbers Game
Aiman Reyaz, New Age Islam

Both Islam and Christianity are concerned with getting new converts. Instead of trying to improve what they have, they want more and more. They think and behave like saviours. Some Muslims go to the extent of trying to prove that William Shakespeare, Bernard Shaw, Abraham Lincoln, Leonardo Da Vinci were Muslims. Why should be bother if these men were Muslims? Even if they were, what difference will it make?....

The Israeli-Palestinian Issue and the Issue of Zionism
Miko Peled

But somehow when we talk about the right of return of Palestinians, when we try to apply the same notion of return to Palestinians, people suddenly stand up and say, “This is completely unacceptable.” Which is interesting. The Palestinians who were displaced 65 years ago, many of them are still alive. Certainly their descendants are alive. So, if they are allowed to return, we are talking about actual people who were displaced....

Some Muslim Views on Jesus' Crucifiction
Adis Duderija, New Age Islam

Some Muslim Views on Jesus' Crucifiction
Adis Duderija, New Age Islam

This verse is explicit on the point that the Prophet Jesus Christ was rescued from crucifixion and that the Christians and the Jews are both wrong in believing that he died on the cross. A comparative study of the Qur'an and the Bible shows that most probably it was Jesus himself who stood his trial in the court of Pilate, who sentenced him to death, but they could not kill or crucify him, for Allah raised him to Himself......

 

Dara Shikoh, who was a follower of the Quadiri order of Sufis and a disciple of Miyan Mir, devoted much of his time to the study of ancient Indian spirituality along with Islamic traditions and felt that the search for God was one all over the world and at all times. In his search for truth, Dara Shikoh tried to find the common ground between Upanishadic and Islamic spirituality believing that there was no need for spiritual traditions to live in isolation from each other and their mingling could produce a tradition that is healthier than either.

American peoples love for Rumi is certainly the poet’s dense erotica, permeated in his love poems. Rumi like all other mystic poets thought his erotica was not for sexual desire but a way of expression for mystic love of God. In Sufi symbolism known as Shathyaat, sexual references such as love making, drinking wine, kissing, etc have an underlying symbolic meaning....

 

Should Muslims Wear The Bindi? The Debate Continues
Udayan Namboodiri

Not all applaud the mixing of traditions, however. Some within the Muslim community have been sharply critical of the trend, saying it contravenes Islam. In recent weeks, heated debate has taken place on social media and internet forums. Speaking from Kolkata, Maulana Syed Noor-ur-Rehman Barkati said that devout Muslims should follow the dictates set forth by their own religion....

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  • This is difficult, but I think we should discuss.'
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  • Royalj, kahan ho bhai ?'
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  • Excellent. Hope the author will write regularly. Where is the author from ? My humble view is that...
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  • Yeh aadmi apni jahalat ki numaish kar raha hai. My Islam is different...
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  • Very well rounded off, Mr. Nasser Ahmed.'
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  • Having started it, let us complete the discussion on creation. (50:38) We created the heavens and the earth and all between them in Six Days, ....
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • All human beings are created by Allah and all have the same derivation from the same forefather and mother, i.e. Adam.& Eve....
    ( By zuma )
  • aleem ka sufi hona jaroori nahi. sufi ko aleem hona jaroori hai. sufi koi libaas nahi.
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  • Hats Off again repeats his lie of Muslims in any country demanding special treatment etc etc etc. Muslims follow the laws ....
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Poor Hats Off is now reduced to nitpicking! He is now badmouthing psychotherapy because the question of his oedipal conflicts was once raised ....
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • You are very poor in your observations Hats Off. I do psychoanalyze people but only when I have sufficient data. I am never hasty about ...
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • Is there any comparison for the historic ill-treatment by the Christians of their Jews and Muslims? How many Muslims...
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • AIMPLB’s idea of religious freedom is merely that the structure of the Muslim society in India should remain unaltered.
    ( By Royalj )
  • Thank you Haque sb for your kind words. I am surprised at Zuma's calculations. The very fact that two verses give two different numbers in different ...
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • Dear Aayina, I have never claimed the the Qur'an alone is the truth from God or a divine scripture. If I did so I will committing ...
    ( By muhammd yunus )
  • Deer Sudeep Kumar ji Agreed with your views - which is put slightly differently as below in my referenced article: "To put it in the wake of ...
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  • Nasser Ahmed sb, I think we are on the same page as regards fundamental precepts of Islam as well as the approach to the ...
    ( By Manzurul Haque )
  • Quran 42:43 mentions that Allah has a high preference for Muslims to show patience and forgiveness to others. The following is ....
    ( By zuma )
  • To my view, it is best to drop the topic since we do not know how Allah did in the past whether it was 6 ...
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  • My ambition is to see future Muslim leadership emerge from the portal of New Age Islam. My association with the portal is long ....
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  • Quran 2:129 mentions that Allah is almighty. The following is the extract: (سورة البقرة, Al-Baqara, Chapter #2, Verse #129)-Mohsin ....
    ( By zuma )
  • by the usual rules of debate with mr. naseer ahmed, it is surprising that he has not yet pseudo-psychoanalyzed mr. ikram ahmed and his relationship ...
    ( By hats off! )
  • muslims in any country are always demanding exceptional treatment, special privileges, and accommodation....
    ( By hats off! )
  • Whatever you say. All muslims want that sickening brand of saudi islam. People elsewhere however civlized or bikni hot pants wearing variety ....
    ( By Vasant Kumar Nair )
  • if a day is 50,000 years, 6 days is 6 x 50,000 years = 300,000 years and yet scientists mention that this ....
    ( By zuma )
  • Naseer Ahmad, Yes, you quote the verse that a day is a thousand years. How could it link with science that mentions it takes ....
    ( By zuma )
  • To believe in Allah is to have faith in faith. There is no need of evidence to prove the existence of Allah in order ...
    ( By zuma )
  • Excellent piece! I fully agree with the author when he says, "The way forwards for India’s Muslims is not a retreat from the political arena, ...
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Haque sb, I have not responded to the silly argument about omnipotence of Allah because it was irrelevant for what was being discussed and the ...
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • The Khalifa-e- rashidin or the first four Caliphs were godly people and not born rulers or politicians. They did not take the simplest of precautions ...
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  • Bromide ! Interesting word. Sounds more like CHSO4. On Facebook we have discussed international situation quite a lot. I consider US ....
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  • I agree with the views of Naseer Ahmed sb about rational validity of a religion, which is not the same as using the holy Quran ...
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  • The more the merrier, I would say. I think we need thousands upon thousands of scholars to keep counselling Muslims and...
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  • The NASA boss, Thomas O Pine who handled 20,000 firms and 40,000 engineers once quipped “We can reach 250,000 mile distant moon, but cannot reach ...
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  • Dear Rashid Samnakay, Time has come to take the bull by its horn. The Sharia law, that in its hey days drew on the best ...
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