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Books and Documents

Spiritual Meditations

What Religion We Want
Swami Ramdas

Religion, whose function is to guide and inspire mankind towards a life of mutual understanding, help and friendliness, has strangely been the cause of racial hatreds, destructive rivalries and false attitudes of superiority. We want a religion shorn of all its narrow particularisation and free from dogmatic beliefs, superstitious impositions and bigoted and sanctimonious ways. We want a religion which appeals to the inner spirit of every man and woman....

 

The Gita teaches us that whatever may be the purpose or way of worship it invariably reaches the Lord of the universe. It also reveals that people worship God for protection from danger, acquisition of desirables, realisation of truth and identification with innermost Self. Our devotion is proportionate to immediate motivation and we cannot sustain devotion for mere abstraction for long.......

 

His Holiness Dalai Lama on Love, Compassion, Violence, Death Sentence and why Many Buddhists No Longer Accept Mount Meru, etc
Dalai Lama

Dalai Lama: Buddha himself stated 'oh my follower should not accept my teaching out of faith, out of devotion, but rather thorough investigation and experiment, the scientific way of approach.' So all the Nalanda masters like Nagarjuna, Aryadeva, Asanga, Chandrakirti, all these great masters of Nalanda, even Buddha's own words, they carry investigation whether Buddha's statement is acceptable or not. So they are always based on logic and experiment so, therefore, I follow that pattern, tradition. For example Mount Meru, many Buddhists no longer accept that.

NDTV: Really?

Dalai Lama: Yes I hope. I still bully Buddhists. So we have liberty. We must accept the reality. The round world, now scientifically through calculation, through observation we actually see that. So the flat world, in centre Mount Meru and sun and moon go like that. As a Buddhist you cannot accept that.....

 

Thus, most Christians, Muslims, Buddhists, Bahais and Hindus are so simply because they happen to have been born into families that claim to be Christian, Muslim, Buddhist, Bahai or Hindu, and not for any other reason. Their inherited religious beliefs so indelibly mould their minds that very often, as adults, even if they do care to study other religions and belief systems, the religion which they happened to have been born into still appears to them as supposedly the best, the most reasonable, the most humane, and even the most ‘scientific’.....

It makes no difference by what name you call God, Baba Nanak tells us here: Ram, Khuda, Gosain or Allah. It doesn’t matter what method of worship you adopt, or where you seek Him: in the bathing Ghats of Kashi, in India, or in the Kaaba, in Mecca, Arabia, or what colour ‘sacred’ dress you wear. What you call yourself—‘Muslim’ or ‘Hindu’ or whatever—too, is immaterial: it’s just a label.....

 

Evil can never remain unchallenged too long. God simply will not allow it. And so, it is only a matter of time, I could tell my friend, before many of his fellow believers, fed up of the way their faith is being manipulated, will begin to denounce those who want to hijack it and use it as a tool to foment hate and terror and pursue their grandiose dreams of global domination. They are bound to begin to rethink and creatively reinterpret their faith in order to rescue it from the mongers of hate......

 

The Essence of Spirituality:  Service of Others
Swami Chidanand Saraswati

The essence of spirituality is service.  As one goes deeper and deeper on a spiritual path and as one gets closer and closer to Realization and Enlightenment, one realizes that the Divine resides in all. One begins to see God’s presence in every person, every animal, and every plant.....

Greeting the Month of Ramadan, In Which Qur’an Was Sent Down
Harun Yahya

The Holy Qur’an — which falsehood cannot approach from either in front or behind, which leads people from the darkness to the light, to the path of our Almighty and Omniscient, and much-praised Lord, a blessing, glad tidings and a mercy for all Muslims, an advice and a reminder for those who fear with a trembling heart — was sent down in the month of Ramadan.…..

 

Rumi says further: “There is only one sort of goodness in the world, and that is loving others as one loves himself; in other words, we should regard other people as we regard ourselves. What remains is illusion and nullity.”  To shed light on this obscure area, Sheikh Mahmud Shabistari (1267-1320), in his mystical poem Gulshan-i-Raz (the mystic rose garden), explains the nature of “Self” as follows:

Who am I? Make me well aware of “self”

What does it mean, within yourself, “travel”?

Then you inquired about, what is it “self’?

Make me aware of “Self”. Who is this “Self’?.....

 

Beyond Names and Forms: Learning from Each Other in the Spiritual Search
Rev. M.M. Abraham

The pressure to understand the total spiritual heritage of all humanity as the common heritage of all people everywhere will increase in the years ahead of us. Whatever comes of the search for dialogue between spiritual traditions, the search for spiritual growth and maturity will continue to inspire us to find life and meaning beyond names and forms. The verses from this prayer of Rabindranath Tagore’s Gitanjali in some ways echo the longing of every human heart.....

 

While religion today has become an issue relegated to the private realm of our daily lives, Islām has always challenged the status quo with its multi-faceted nature. As a religion, it is unique and comprehensive in the way it helps regulate all aspects of human life. But what truly distinguishes Islām from other faiths such as Christianity, Judaism, Buddhism and Hinduism, is that it does not advocate monasticism….

 

All you need to do is to say just a few words of praise to or about at least ten people you meet, talk about or think about today. If at least one of them is someone you love to hate, it’s even better! If you find this exercise difficult, the least you can do is to consciously refrain from complaining about any person, thing or situation you come across today......

 

Even Smile Is a Voluntary Charity
Aishah Schwartz

How many times have you passed someone walking through a mall, in a hallway at school, on the bus, a train, or in the office where you work, and noticed that no one was smiling? This is often the case among Muslims, which is a contributing factor to the misconception that to be Muslim means being serious all the time; never laughing or having fun. Ironically, this is quite contrary to the Sunnah (the Prophet’s tradition), as Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), was well-known for his congenial nature and smile....

The Environment and Intelligence
Hiranmay Karlekar

What is needed is a change in the priorities and values of the society around us, and a vision that transcends the immediate and can take a wider view of things. It will take a huge amount of time and effort to bring about the social consensus essential for such a transformation. Steps to prevent further loss of forests and animal lives would be a good starting point.....

 
Teachers Who Transform
Hasan Zillur Rahim

Teachers Who Transform
Hasan Zillur Rahim

American Muslims have excelled in many fields – engineering, biology, physics, law – to name a few, but by and large, teaching is not one of them. There are relatively few Muslim teachers in America from mainstream public schools, colleges and universities who have been recognized for their brilliance nationwide in the art of teaching. Yet it is teachers who form the backbone of society……

 

The Truth Must Triumph Over Hatred
Tarek Fatah

Conventional wisdom dictated that education and exposure to the West would tame the hatred many in Pakistan have for others, but that was not to be.....

When a Mosque Closes Its Doors
Anwar Iqbal

“Lock your doors and windows. Close your eyes. Recue the light. And wait patiently as now you do not have an option,” said the old man sitting outside the closed doors of a mosque. “Put out the light. Let darkness prevail. This is the darkness that comes before death. So wait patiently for the end.” I went to him, gave a Rs100 note and said: “Baba Jee, it is evening. The day is ending. Soon the night will begin. Be gentle to the people. Do not scare them. Give them hope.” He pocketed the money and said: “I can lie once for a Rs100 but only once.”….

 

Please Don’t Try To Be Extraordinary
Marguerite Theophil

It reminds me of a teaching story about how God plays a joke on every new-born, whispering, ‘You are the special one!’ But the joke quickly wears thin when, as adult, the once new-born starts running up against several billion others on this planet who all assume that they are ‘the special one’.  Striving to be extraordinary naturally involves competition and comparison, winning and losing. But when one doesn’t win there is that awful term applied – loser – if not by others, then by oneself.....

 

Reflections on Peace in Plural Societies
Maulana Wahiduddin Khan

It is a psychological reality that one generally takes the critique or admonishment of people whom one considers one’s own in a positive way, and, accordingly, reforms oneself. On the other hand, one generally takes the criticism of people one does not know or whom one considers as the ‘other’ as an insult to one’s honour, and so it does not have a positive impact. With regard to the issue of communal harmony, it is very necessary to keep this bit of practical wisdom in mind......

 

Imagine how sad, the someone, who had gifted you the earth to look after as a custodian would feel on seeing his gift being treated in such a shoddy manner! Imagine what he might think of you! You’d definitely not expect him to be pleased, would you?....

 

Mercy Bears Richer Fruits than Strict Justice: We Need More Sami Yusufs, Not Boko Harams
Aijaz Zaka Syed

And that wasn’t the first time he had done so. He had always been the epitome of mercy and kindness to all. I am sure the noblest of prophets would have forgiven these slights, inadvertent or otherwise, too. After all, he came as a mercy to all mankind. And as his followers, that is what we should do. We cannot counter hatred with more hatred but love. As Lincoln argued, mercy bears richer fruits than strict justice.…..

 

Does God Punish Sinners With Disasters?
Mustafa Akyol

Those conservatives in question were maybe right in their outrage at certain misdeeds in Turkey, but I believe they were wrong to interpret the Soma disaster as a divine punishment for those sins. And since the broader issue of whether God really punishes sinners by earthly disasters is relevant for the whole Muslim world, let me elaborate a bit on why……

 

“Soon, the thought came to my mind, that if a little animal could be made so happy with my kindness, how much more happiness I could offer to my fellow human beings. So, the next day, I baked some cookies and took them over to the old lady who lived upstairs. How delighted she was, and how delighted I was to see her so pleased! “And that was how my new life began. I did whatever I could to make people happy.....

 
Fragments of a Faith
Brandino Machiavelli

…. apparent fragmentation into blinkered or scleroticised cults not only promotes internal hate and strife but keeps Islam from gaining its deserved place as a spiritual leader in the modern, globalised world. These sects, some as ancient as Islam itself, others which have developed over the centuries and until recent times, seem to have acquired, in the face of declining European colonialism and the onslaught of American post-colonialism a new impetus….

 

Man and Humanity In Search Of Peace Not Wars
Dr. Mahboob A. Khawaja

Human nature longs for peace and harmony not violence and conflict. Nobody can invent peace; it needs to be discovered out of the planned efforts to make it happen. None of the contemporary leaders can enjoin a vision of peace or contribute positively toward sustainable future-making. Egoistic global leaders are in disarray and intellectual decline to think of peace….

 
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NEW COMMENTS

  • Very clearly Shahin Sb endorses my approach and its significance. Dear Naseer Saheb, I agree that the understanding of the term “kafir” is of utmost ...
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • The onus is not on me to understand and accept. I cannot understand for you. Can I help it if you or anyone else is ...
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • Learning Usul ul-Fiqh i.e. the Principle of Jurisprudence is important to understand the rulings derived from the shariah for our daily lives. This is because ...
    ( By Ghulam Ghaus Siddiqi غلام غوث الصديقي )
  • Very clearly Shahin Sb endorses my approach and its significance. Dear Naseer Saheb, I agree that the understanding....
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • Naseer sab, When I said, "A religion of peace and virtuousness has no need for extensive tafsirs on concepts such as kafir....
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Naseer sab, I did not say anything about who Sultan Shahin sab was addressing or whether he had....
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Naseer sab, Instead of asking me to read all those articles, can you just give me the numbers...
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • All that Naseer sab can do is make character attacks on others or heap praise on his own work! The onus is on him and ...
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Shahin Sb, The meaning of another word that our Ulema corrupted to glamourize war is Shaheed to mean martyr which is not the meaning of the ...
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • Shahin Sb’s comment is addressed to you GM sb not to me. He is telling you what he thinks is important. He has no ....
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • GM Sb, I haven't seen a more churlish character than yourself. If you are offended by what I say, put in my place ....
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • Allah may conceal the purpose of His ways, but His ways are not without purpose.....
    ( By Royalj )
  • Sultan, how many more years you are going to live in this world? Perhaps another twenty or thirty years? One of your great prophets ...
    ( By Royalj )
  • Naseer sab, Sultan Shahin sab has his agenda and I have mine. I presented my view which...
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Naseer sab, Which verses support items number 2, 3 and 4 of your "clear, unambiguous ...
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Naseer sab, You should be embarrassed for praising your own conclusions and calling them "truths" unashamedly. Why can't you...
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Will the Saudi Crown Prince sell Palestinians down the drain in order to be a victor...
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Three Rules of Religious Understanding:” “When trying to understand another religion, you should...
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  • Comment 1. The Meaning and Application of Kufr and Its derivatives [musthaqqat] کفر کا معنی و مفہوم کفر کے مختلف معانی ہیں: ان میں سے ...
    ( By Ghulam Ghaus Siddiqi غلام غوث الصديقي )
  • And what is that you do GM sb? Being a devious character, you make your disagreement look like an agreement. You have been relentlessly trying ...
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • GM sb, a committed troll, talks about deviousness for ignoring his nonsensical response. He is the one who is truly devious. In another thread, Shahin ...
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • Our scholars have made Islam a religion without principles which is what we need to address. My comment on Yunus Sb’s article is reproduced: ....
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • Yunus Sb has not said anything different from what I said. "And I only quoted Yunus sb verbatim without drawing ...
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • Naseer sab is good at exaggerating and over-dramatizing disagreements, especially if it makes his "discovery" look good!.
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Naseer sab, Posting a comment but omitting the response is deviousness that is typical of you. Your ...
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Ghulam Ghaus bhai, Kya neeche diye gaye Mushrik aur kafir ki taarif sahih hai ?....
    ( By Wasim Ansari )
  • Naseer sab, A foulmouthed mufassir does deserve condemnation, and that's what I did in my last post. You continue applauding yourself when you yourself call ...
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Dear Hamza Zafar sb, Thank you very much for your very detailed response. Besides reading every standard translation of the Quran, I have tried to follow ...
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • It may this appear to be a hopeless case. But we simply cannot afford to lose hope. That's why I keep hoping that the struggle ...
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • GM Sb, Is it devious to ignore the rubbish and say what is meaningful? Your capacity for responding ad-nauseum when you have nothing worthwhile ....
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • GM Sb says “Anyone who does not agree with Naseer sab is "blind"! Shame on such mufassirs!” He has confirmed ....
    ( By Naseer Ahmed )
  • Dear Sultan Shahin Sahab, I think you need to take a close look at my following recently posted article:....
    ( By muhammd yunus )
  • Masha Allha brother, Ghulam Ghaus I was also confused about the the term Ahle Qibla and its application. But this ....
    ( By Zahid Ansari )
  • Excellent synopsis by Sultan Shahin sahib of the enormous and stupendous task facing those who want to put Islam back on....
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Naseer sab, I have no interest in reposting anything. I was just pointing out the deviousness....
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • Anyone who does not agree with Naseer sab is "blind"! Shame on such mufassirs!....
    ( By Ghulam Mohiyuddin )
  • The binary thinking of Muslim-Kafir and Islam-Kufr runs through the veins of our Muslim society, particularly among those who have acquired classical religious education in ...
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  • I HAVE READ SOME COMMENTS OF THIS SECTION. THIS NEW AGE ISLAM IS FULL OF ABUSIVE SENTENCES....
    ( By Pankaj )
  • MY QUESTION IS FOR NASEER IS THERE ANY VERSE IN THE QURAN WHICH PROVES THAT YOU ARE LAWFUL SON OF YOUR PARENTS?...
    ( By Pankaj )
  • wahabism is the real problem of Islamic world. Muslims need to disassociate themselves from wahhabism.
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