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Books and Documents

Interfaith Dialogue

Perceiving the ‘Other’ in Pakistan, Within and Across Borders
Anam Zakaria

Awkwardly I followed the rest of the class as they chanted a strange “Ooomaammm” mantra. At the end of the class, I went up to the trainer and asked if this concoction of sounds meant anything. She laughed and said, “We used to say Om, which is the correct way of practicing the mantra. It is a spiritually relaxing sound I love to end the class with but too many students complained. They said it sounded too Hindu. Many of them left the class. I had to break the sound up to satisfy the students.”...

 

From Turkey to Iran, the Buddhist Thought Had Been Woven Into Poetry
Jawed Naqvi

From Turkey to Iran, the Buddhist thought had been woven into poetry. Take Rumi or Adam Sanai in the 12th century, Buddha’s presence is inescapable. “Someone who keeps aloof from suffering is not a lover,” says Sanai in a translation by Coleman Barks. Buddha would be smiling with joy, not the half smile of Firaq....

“It is impossible for anyone who studies the life and character of the great Prophet of Arabia, who knows how he taught and how he lived, to feel anything but reverence for that mighty Prophet, one of the great messengers of the Supreme. And although in what I put to you I shall say many things which may be familiar to many, yet I myself feel whenever I re-read them, a new way of admiration, a new sense of reverence for that mighty Arabian teacher.”...

 

One can have as many “partners” as one wish and at the State’s expense and no questions asked! Because legislating against the practice would violate some form of freedoms, yet the politically and some might say racially motivated clamour behind the moral disgust is deafening. As far as imposing burden on the taxpayer is concerned, on daily basis it is reported in the media as to how the welfare system is cheated by all sorts of people and in millions of dollars! Muslims ‘single mothers’ of polygamous marriage are not the only experts in this field....

The Nawabs of Oudh gave several grants to the temples of Ayodhya and provided them protection in other ways. The Diwan of Nawab Safdarjung built several temples in Ayodhya and arranged for the repair of other temples. Nawab Safdarjung gave land for the construction of a temple at Hanumangarhi. Asafadullah’s Diwan gave further help for the construction of a temple......

 

As the monk in the above-mentioned story would say, if a distinctive ‘religious’ dress helps one to stay on the right path each time one may be tempted to stray, it is useful or skilful means. But if turns into a fetish, made into an end in itself and simply a marker of identity to distinguish oneself from others, then it has completely lost its purpose....

 

We Don’t Talk About ‘Radicalization’ When an Attacker Isn’t Muslim: We Should
Jack Hitt

The study of terrorists’ history suggests there is a relationship between these two forms of radical discourse. Distant authorities talking in a deniably cryptic way contribute to the rationalization for violence. This shift toward violence can have an effect at just about every level — from the lone-wolf killer, to couples, to hidden cells..... radicalization of an entire nation is possible, too — typically after reckless innuendo from political leaders becomes acceptable and then routine....

 
In US, Jewish-Muslim Solidarity
Meenakshi Chakraverti

In US, Jewish-Muslim Solidarity
Meenakshi Chakraverti

“All Jews should register as Muslims because we know the horrors of religious registration all too well.” ....“Targeting all Muslims is a horror movie that we Jews are all too familiar with. It can easily lead to heightened discrimination, persecution and scapegoating. In the United States, there is no place — no place, whatsoever — for this kind of divisive, hateful rhetoric.”....

 
Islamic Culture and India
Muhammad Shafeeque

In the ranks of Hindus and later Sikhs, the spiritual Bhakti movement in India was a blessing for the Sufi saints. The Bhakti phenomenon took inspiration from the Bhagavad Gita and Upanishads. The Sufi saints placed those texts on a firmer ground of acceptance. The Bhakti movement gained momentum in the 11th and 12th centuries with the rise of Sufi culture in the country. Hindu scholars were explicitly influenced by aspects of Sufism, like its concentration on 'one god', which resulted in the emergence of many religious reformers in the country....

 

Europe’s Jews Have Reason to Fear Today’s Political Climate
Doug Saunders

But he concluded that it wasn’t Muslim anti-Semitism leading the trend; rather, it was the far larger populations of Christians. As he noted, the number of Spanish citizens who express unfavourable views of Jews is almost 50 per cent; Muslims make up less than 3 per cent of Spain’s population and aren’t growing fast. So “a European anti-Semite remains far more likely to be Christian than Muslim.” The larger problem, he concluded, is “the tendency of wily politicians to play Jews and Muslims against each other for purposes of their own.”...

Stand With Your Muslim Neighbours and Fight Bigotry
Jordan Goldwarg

In my work as the director of an interfaith-youth movement, I have had the privilege of visiting numerous mosques in Seattle and forming close friendships and professional relationships with many Muslims. Through these contacts, I have come to see Islam as a religion that espouses peace, compassion and tolerance. I have been humbled to see the work done by mosques…

 

Wanted: Leaders to Turn Interfaith Conflict into Trust
David Bornstein

If the question is: How do you have a healthy religiously diverse democracy. I think the answer is that we have to recognize that people can disagree on some fundamental or ultimate concerns, and work together on others. An interfaith leader creates the spaces, curates the conversations and forms the activities for these kinds of relationships to emerge...

 

Don’t Cancel Christmas On Behalf Of Muslims Like Me – I Love It
Remona Aly

Traditions bring people together and strengthen us as a society. When Christian, Jewish, Sikh and agnostic friends marked Eid festivities at home with me earlier this year, it didn’t mean they were confused, but that they wanted to acknowledge its importance to me, as well as dive into some Eid grub. Sharing in the Shabbat rituals with Jewish friends or wishing Hindu friends a happy Diwali won’t make me lose a sense of who I am, but enriches my own sense of faith....

Learning from Saifuddin
Roshan Shah, New Age Islam

After we had lost so much, God blessed us with so much! Everything we receive is from God, and for that we should be grateful. In my joyful gratitude to God I thought that we should share something with people in our village who are economically poorer than us—a meal once in a while....

 

“No matter what our religious differences, we are all one, actually,” Rebello muses, “being fellow children of the One God. I like thinking of dialogue as all of us—Hindus, Christians, Muslims, Sikhs, Buddhists and everyone else—coming together to form a circle and holding hands together in love, and then raising our hands towards God.”....

 

Hindus and Muslims Strike Same Cultural Chord
Shambhu Boro

In Assam, both Hindu and Muslims tried to integrate Vaishnavism and Sufism, whereas in Bengal some Muslims dreamt to amalgamate the culture of both the religions. The question of conflict between the Hindus and the Muslims during the medieval period is not true. The Vaishnavite culture seldom mentioned Islam as a religion, but they considered it as a class like Brahmin or Kayastha.”...

Lady Mary as a Role Model in the Qur’an and Bible (Part Two)
Dr. Zahra Kashaniha

An individual’s nurture and upbringing is based on two conditions: genetic and acquired. Scholars and scientists differ as to whether inheritance or environment is more effective. Some believe that inherited factors are more important than environmental factors....

Lady Mary as a Role Model in the Qur’an and Bible (Part One)
Dr. Zahra Kashaniha

Qur’anic descriptions of the prophets and other prominent female personalities reveal the importance of using them as an exemplar in our daily lives. This makes certain that we are given the guidelines as to how to attain proximity to God. Lady Mariam is the most distinguished female mentioned by name in the holy Qur’an, so much so that an entire chapter is named after her.....

 

Vatican Bishop Lays Out 'Roadmap' For Dialogue with Islam
Andrea Gagliarducci

“Members of every religion,” Bishop Ayuso underscored, “must all feel citizenship in their country, so that they can take part in building the common good and the social good.” This is why Al-Azhar and the Holy See are called “to work together on the issue of religious freedom,” the bishop said....

 

A Step towards Interfaith Harmony
Mohammad Jamil

The world is in the throes of violence at the present, and the need for interfaith harmony has never been as urgent and great as it is today. To achieve this objective, history should be rewritten, and focus should be on achievements in science, art, literature, culture and ideas that have helped mankind. All wars and savagery demonstrated by the Greek-Roman Empire, the British Empire, the Ottoman Empire or the US imperialist outreach should be condemned....

 In fact, many Urdu poets saw the avatars as prophets, since there is no word for prophet in Hindi or other Indic languages, and no concept of an avatar in Arabic, Farsi or Turkish. Al Beruni has recorded how bilingual coins struck by Mahmud Ghazni used the Sanskrit word ‘avatar’ to describe Prophet Muhammad. Mirza In line with this tradition, Mazhar Jaan-e-Jaan (1699-1781) suggested the avatars of Vishnu – particularly Rama and Krishna – should also be understood as prophets. Thus Iqbal was following in fairly established territory...

 

The term ‘Hussaini Brahmins’ comes as a surprise for the majority of readers. It is perceived as if two contradicting words are aligned together. However, its definition is a source of inspiration for those who believe in plurality, unity and diversity. At a time when communal animosity is escalating between Hindus and Muslims, one should reminisce the valour shown by Brahmins residing in North-West frontier (now Pakistan) by joining the martyrdom of the revered Islamic figure....

The recent decision that Muslims will join their Hindu neighbours in pulling the Raghunath chariot in the famous Kullu Dussehra of Himachal Pradesh is just one example of the many ways in which people of various communities have been coming together to celebrate each other’s festivals.  It is true that such celebrations have been damaged and reduced in recent times by narrow sectarian propaganda. Planned efforts would be one way to maintain and revive such traditions....

 

Honouring Faith and Secularism in the Armed Forces: Men Who Fight Together Must Pray Together
Syed Ata Hasnain

As a senior commander in Kashmir some of my most satisfying moments were those when I did a round robin of all Gurudwaras of the units on Guru Purab, ending with Langar with the unit usually deployed in the most difficult area. Once in a Muslim Grenadiers unit, its Hindu company commander put me to shame when I saw that he was keeping all 30 Rozas with his men and even reading all five Namaz which he knew perfectly....

Christian Democrats and Muslim Democrats
Jane Louise Kandur

Thus, it is easy to see that the appellation "Islamist Party" is not the correct term for the AK Party. To refer to the AK Party in this way would be tantamount to lumping a Christian Democrat Party together with far-right parties, for example a Neo-Nazi party. In fact, it is even worse, for by referring to Muslim Democrat Parties as Islamist parties, these movements are thrown together with Daish or Boko Haram. ...

 


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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, ....
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  • All human beings are created by Allah and all have the same derivation from the same forefather and mother, i.e. Adam.& Eve....
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  • 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 ....
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  • 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 ...
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  • 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 ...
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  • 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 ...
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  • Quran 42:43 mentions that Allah has a high preference for Muslims to show patience and forgiveness to others. The following is ....
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  • 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 ....
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  • 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 ...
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  • 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 )
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  • 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 ...
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  • 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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