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The_Seeker  
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Rating: 0 of 0 votes Quote The_Seeker Replybullet Posted: 15 October 2009 at 6:54pm
Originally posted by Al-Cordoby

 

US Food Festival Unites Religions

CAIRO – US Christian, Jewish and Muslim leaders are coming together this week in the south-central state of Oklahoma to break bread at an interfaith festival.

"We celebrate the differences between us, and all that we hold in common as well", Rev. Wendy Lambert, an associate pastor at St. Luke’s United Methodist Church told NewsOK paper Saturday, October 10.

The church will host the “Food and Festival of Faith” on Wednesday, October 14, to showcase joint traditions between followers of the three faiths.

Participants will feature samples of different foods consumed by followers of the three faiths.

They will also learn about various Christian, Jewish and Muslim traditions.

The participants will also come together at a workshop service combining the three faiths.

"We really believe that God calls us to live as people of peace," said Lambert.

Common Ground

The planned food festival is greeted as an engine for promoting integration.

"In order for us all to get to know each other and to get to know our traditions,” said Marjan Seirafi-Pour, a member of the Oklahoma City-area Muslim community.

“I think it’s very important to have events like this."

Seirafi-Pour reiterated her pleasure to be part of the festival bringing the three Abrahamic faiths together.

She believes such festivals help in bringing ideas and traditions closer to share a common ground .......

http://www.islamonline.net/servlet/Satellite?c=Article_C&cid=1254573482262&pagename=Zone-English-News/NWELayout



Looking for common ground is the key! Set aside stereotypes and differences, find the beliefs we all share and celebrate those. I think this festival is a great idea and I would love to participate in one someday.
The Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said: "The strong person is not the one who knocks others down, but the one who controls himself when angry."
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a well wisher  
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Rating: 0 of 0 votes Quote a well wisher Replybullet Posted: 16 October 2009 at 12:22am

Yes me too....excellent initiatives...

Thank You Brother Tarek for posting them...
La ilaha ill-Allah, Muhammadur Rasulullah
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Al-Cordoby  
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Rating: 0 of 0 votes Quote Al-Cordoby Replybullet Posted: 21 October 2009 at 3:10am
Fethullah Gulen is one of the leading Turkish writers and thinkers who promote the concepts of tolerance and peaceful co-existence.
 
This is one of his recent writings I found today:

Muslim-Christian Relations: Reinventing the Common Ground to Sustain a Peaceful Coexistence in the Global Era

Finding common ground between Muslims and Christians is not simply a matter for polite ecumenical dialogue between honorable selected religious leaders. All adherents of Islam and Christianity all over the world should carefully and seriously read and study the documents, especially those who are community and religious leaders living in the grass roots level and even the politician, member of parliament in the country, teachers and lectures in the university.

Christianity and Islam are the largest and the second largest religions in the world and in history. Christians and Muslims reportedly make up over a third and over a fifth of humanity respectively. Together they make up more than 55% of the world's population, making the relationship between these two religious communities the most important factor in contributing to meaningful peace around the world. If Muslims and Christians are not at peace, the world cannot be at peace.

The challenge of humanity today does not only come from the terrible weaponry of the modern world, global worming and environmental crisis but also comes from the intended or unintended impact of promoting the idea the clash of civilization by Huntington's thesis in l990, which is in essence is the clash between Christian and Muslim civilizations. Today, with Muslims and Christians intertwined everywhere as never before, no side can unilaterally win a conflict between more than half of the world's inhabitants. Thus our common future is at stake, the very survival of the world itself is perhaps at stake.

Love of God and Love of the Neighbour

A careful study on the Bible and Qur'an, as the document of A Common Word between Us and You[1] tells us, delineates that these two religions similarly emphasize the primacy of Loving God and Loving the neighbour. These principles are found over and over again in the sacred texts of Islam and Christianity The Unity of God, the necessity of love for Him, and the necessity of love of the neighbour is thus the common ground between Islam and Christianity. The following are only a few examples ...........

http://en.fgulen.com/conference-papers/gulen-conference-in-melbourne//3441-muslim-christian-relations-reinventing-the-common-ground-to-sustain-a-peaceful-coexistence-in-the-global-era.html

 


Edited by Al-Cordoby - 21 October 2009 at 3:12am
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Al-Cordoby  
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Rating: 0 of 0 votes Quote Al-Cordoby Replybullet Posted: 23 October 2009 at 3:08am

The Gulen Institute Tackles World Problems

This panel organized by the Gulen Institute discussed how government and media can use common values to address problems, and identifying common grounds in religion to create a set of moral actions that can be used to mitigate global and local problems of society

Dialogue among people of different backgrounds contributes to world peace, as better understanding and tolerance

http://www.youtube.com/user/GulenMovement#p/u/8/AlsxcE2ceIE

(4 minutes)

This is the Gulen Institute web site, located at the University of Houston, Texas

http://www.guleninstitute.org/

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Al-Cordoby  
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Rating: 0 of 0 votes Quote Al-Cordoby Replybullet Posted: 24 October 2009 at 1:32am

Reflections on European Multiculturalism, Islam and Peaceful Coexistence: Tariq Ramadan and Fethullah Gülen

The Islamic scholars Fethullah Gülen and Tariq Ramadan are two major personalities whose ideas and views are admired and valued by the Muslim community, especially its younger generations, in Europe.

These two thinkers are calling for a better understanding of civilizational and religious pluralism, a moderate way of practising Islam, and the coexistence of different ethnic and religious affiliations. Their ideas promote universal human rights, tolerance and forgiveness among European peoples in contexts marked by mistrust, intolerance and fear. ...

This paper analyses the circulation of their ideas among the younger generation, their education and dialogue initiatives, and the cassettes of lectures that have opened up a space where ideas about human civic responsibility, democracy, citizenship, pluralism, dialogue and tolerance can take root.

http://en.fgulen.com/conference-papers/peaceful-coexistence/2503-reflections-on-european-multiculturalism-islam-and-peaceful-coexistence-tariq-ramadan-and-fethullah-gulen.html

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Cornelius  
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Rating: 0 of 0 votes Quote Cornelius Replybullet Posted: 24 October 2009 at 2:58pm
As I have said many times before, I really don't care what you believe. What I care about is individual freedom and that is something that the Muslim world is not ready to release. If you are born Muslim you must remain Muslim in punishment of death.
As I have mentioned many times before, Europe went through a terrible time under Catholic rule. Most Europeans are not ready to become enslaved again by another religion. Indeed, the respect of he church is now minimal in Europe. For Muslims and others moving to Europe, they are free to believe what ever they like, but they have to accept that others don't believe as they do.
Christianity can and is criticized regularly, we must have the right to criticize Islam without fear of being put to death.
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Rating: 0 of 0 votes Quote Al-Cordoby Replybullet Posted: 24 October 2009 at 10:12pm
(For you is your religion, and for me is my religion) (The Qur'an, 109:6)
 
(And say the truth is from your Lord, so whoever wills let him believe, and whoever wills let him disbelieve) (The Qur'an, 18:29)
 
Clear guidelines for the freedom of religion
 
It's a free personal choice
 
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Rating: 0 of 0 votes Quote The_Seeker Replybullet Posted: 24 October 2009 at 11:44pm
Originally posted by Cornelius

As I have said many times before, I really don't care what you believe. What I care about is individual freedom and that is something that the Muslim world is not ready to release. If you are born Muslim you must remain Muslim in punishment of death.
As I have mentioned many times before, Europe went through a terrible time under Catholic rule. Most Europeans are not ready to become enslaved again by another religion. Indeed, the respect of he church is now minimal in Europe. For Muslims and others moving to Europe, they are free to believe what ever they like, but they have to accept that others don't believe as they do.
Christianity can and is criticized regularly, we must have the right to criticize Islam without fear of being put to death.


Asalaam Alaikum!

If I'm not mistaking, the original intent for punishing Muslims with death for leaving Islam was because during the Propht's (peace and blessings be upon him) time, his enemies would 'convert' to Islam to spy on the Muslim community and then return to use this against Muslims. It's basically treason, which is also punishable by death in the US.

As for those who criticize Islam, I say let them. Muslims who kill those who criticize Islam are not representative of the entire Ummah. Even the Prophet (pbuh) did not kill those who criticized Islam, because some of his fiercest critics and haters eventually embraced Islam on their own. There are always people who take texts like the Quran out of context and twist it to agree with whatever actions they want.

It's really a shame we only hear about the negative actions of certain Muslims and never about all the good Muslims do - like charity, helping others, hospitality, and countless other good deeds Muslims perform every day.

For example, a group of Muslims from my university go to a poverty-stricken, violent part of Chicago every Sunday. They hand out food to anyone who is hungry. No questions asked. If someone is asked about Islam, of course they will answer all questions, but they don't force it on anyone.

Why don't actions like that make the news?

I think all religions should concentrate on what they have in common, rather than their differences. We need to stop this 'them vs. us' mentality.

Peace!


The Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said: "The strong person is not the one who knocks others down, but the one who controls himself when angry."
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Rating: 0 of 0 votes Quote Al-Cordoby Replybullet Posted: 01 November 2009 at 12:22pm

The Dialogue Society - London, UK

Founded in 1999 as a registered charity, the Dialogue Society is an organisation of research and civic engagement working to develop and deliver new ideas for dynamic, effective and meaningful dialogue to advance intercultural dialogue, community cohesion and proactive citizenship.

The Dialogue Society is interested in ‘developing & delivering’ ideas and projects, respectively, in the following areas:

* Community cohesion and multiculturalism
* Identity and integration
* Family, education and youth
* Media, culture and communication
* Human rights and civil liberties
* Theology and religious studies
* World cultures and societies
* Peace-building and conflict resolution
* International relations and diplomacy

The Dialogue Society was founded by second generation British Muslims of Turkish background. The original and continuing motivation for the Dialogue Society comes from Islam which the founding and existing directors of the Society maintain as necessitating dialogue, diversity, community cohesion, equal access to human rights and freedom of belief for all, proactive citizenship, loyalty to the law of the land and democratic engagement.

 

http://www.dialoguesociety.org/about-us.html

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Rating: 0 of 0 votes Quote Al-Cordoby Replybullet Posted: 03 November 2009 at 12:04am
The Question of Lifestyle in Interfaith Relationships
Alphonse DOUGAN


Acommon expression used in “explaining” an apparent animosity among the members of different faiths is to say that “they are opposed to our lifestyle.” While this phrase is used often and carelessly, few people seem to stop and think what it really means and if it is an accurate assessment. Questions such as “Who are they?”, “What is our lifestyle?”, “How much do they know about our lifestyle?”, “Does our lifestyle have any impact on them?”, “How different is their lifestyle from ours?”, “Are they opposed to every group of people who practice the same lifestyle?”, and “Are there people who benefit from framing conflicts in this way?” are seldom asked. Consequently, these questions are almost never answered in a systematic, objective way. In this article we will try to explore some of these issues and shed light on some hidden answers in the context of Christian-Muslim relations.

Stereotypes and Identities: Who are “They”?

In the context of conflicts that are faith-related or that appear to be faith-related, the term “they” typically represents a media-driven stereotype of a group of persons who seem totally out of “our” world. They speak a different language, they look different, they dress differently, and their values are different. Let’s examine these factors: The fact that some people look or dress differently is not a problem for most. Mexicans speak a different language than Americans. They look and dress differently. The same can be said of Chinese or Japanese. Yet these differences, in and of themselves, do not carry any negative connotations. How about the values? Do Muslims have essentially different values than Christians, Jews and Buddhists? Not really. Indeed, the vast majority of the fundamental values are shared by all these faiths. ..........

http://www.fountainmagazine.com/article.php?ARTICLEID=378

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Rating: 0 of 0 votes Quote keithnurse Replybullet Posted: 03 November 2009 at 2:19pm
Originally posted by The_Seeker

Originally posted by Cornelius

As I have said many times before, I really don't care what you believe. What I care about is individual freedom and that is something that the Muslim world is not ready to release. If you are born Muslim you must remain Muslim in punishment of death.
As I have mentioned many times before, Europe went through a terrible time under Catholic rule. Most Europeans are not ready to become enslaved again by another religion. Indeed, the respect of he church is now minimal in Europe. For Muslims and others moving to Europe, they are free to believe what ever they like, but they have to accept that others don't believe as they do.
Christianity can and is criticized regularly, we must have the right to criticize Islam without fear of being put to death.


Asalaam Alaikum!

If I'm not mistaking, the original intent for punishing Muslims with death for leaving Islam was because during the Propht's (peace and blessings be upon him) time, his enemies would 'convert' to Islam to spy on the Muslim community and then return to use this against Muslims. It's basically treason, which is also punishable by death in the US.


Peace!


Yes, this is the claim Muslims usually make to defend Islams barbaric apostasy laws.  To say the changing from one religion to another is treason because of damagingor betraying the Islamic state, to me, is absolute  proof that separation of religion and state is one of the best ideas ever thought of.  If religion and state are separate then leaving a religion won't have anything to do with treason.  Every American should be made aware of Islams evil apostasy laws.
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Rating: 0 of 0 votes Quote Daisy Replybullet Posted: 03 November 2009 at 3:37pm
How about my marriage? So long as I do as I'm told!!!!
 
Me - Welsh
She - Iranian (via Lebanon)
 
Being shouted at in English, Arabic, Farsi and French all at the same time is enough to reduce any grown man to tears interspersed with grovelling apologies.........
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
........Coming dear!!!
Time waits for no man. Unless that man is Chuck Norris!!
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Rating: 0 of 0 votes Quote Al-Cordoby Replybullet Posted: 04 November 2009 at 12:56am
US Conference Discusses Gülen Movement Contributions to Peace

Officials from the US Department of State, a retired ambassador, academics and others gathered at the University of Maryland, College Park campus, on Thursday to participate in a Rumi Forum Maryland conference on the Gülen movement's contributions to world peace.
 
 
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Rating: 0 of 0 votes Quote a well wisher Replybullet Posted: 06 November 2009 at 11:14pm
Changing the present and dreaming the future
by Tariq Ramadan
07 November 2006
 
London — It is my perception that we have continued the process of interfaith dialogue among ourselves without taking into account the reality of our present world. Our world has changed tremendously, especially during the last 10 years. We are going from one crisis to another: social, civilizational and cultural.

As we represent the faiths of the people, we have to deal with this reality and we have to face up to our responsibilities in dealing with these crises. If we are speaking about hopes, we have to start by being realistic and face up to the responsibility. If we want something to happen, we should try and change not only the way we are dealing with each other but also the way we are dealing with the world we are living in. When we speak about hopes and dreams, there is the Prophet’s peace upon all who are dreaming the future and transforming the present. It should not be the other way around. By dreaming the present you are not helping me to deal with my problems.
Therefore, dream the future, change the present and this is the way we have to deal with our values, with our teachings.

If I, as a Muslim man, try to share my views with fellow citizens of Christian, Jewish, Buddhist, Hindu or indigenous spiritual traditions, I, and others like me, are very often perceived as naive people, dreamers, far from reality. Is this true? If many perceive us like that, elementary psychology is telling us that we have to ask ourselves if there is any truth in this perception. I think there is. Our discourse is sometimes far removed from the reality of people’s lives. We speak about love but as soon as we seek to promote love in this world, it becomes difficult. To love is difficult. We speak about peace, but to get peace, inner peace and collective peace, that is difficult. We speak about the importance of family. But people want concrete answers on how to build a family in this world, today, within this reality of social and psychological crises. We are living in a world where we need to give answers.

We are not secure and we do not feel secure. In the United States, there is a great deal of fear after 9/11. In Israel, Palestine, India and other parts of the world, fear is everywhere. It is not only a state of mind which we are witnessing. Fear is also used by politicians and by religious people, people of faith. If we are true and understand the meaning of faith, we will have to deal with fear. Then we can begin to understand that we live in a world where emotions are promoted, and emotions have nothing to do with spirituality —— in fact they are its opposite.

Emotions are superficial reactions. Not superficial in a bad way, but the first reaction surfacing when something happens. Spirituality is something different. It is about effort, about something that you experience deep in your heart. Spirituality is the way to master your emotions, not to be, or to submit yourself to, your own emotions. It is of vital importance to talk about our spiritual teachings. What do they tell us of mastering emotions?

Why is it so important to go beyond our emotions? Because they put us in a position where we perceive “us” versus “them” and where we have to defend our identity. That mindset is perverse, it is vicious in the world that we are living in to see each other as separate, always protecting myself from you and you protecting yourself from me. It makes dialogue quite impossible.

Spirituality has nothing to do with naivety. Spirituality has nothing to do with dreaming. It has to do with a critical mind enabling us to make an effort, a spiritual effort to maintain a distance from our emotions and to try to understand the world. It means to learn to listen, and it is not easy to listen when we are emotional.

I was in Sarajevo a few weeks ago and there, ten years after the war, an Eastern European was asking a Western European: “Let me ask you one thing: after what happened and us being Muslims, how can I trust you?”

This question of trust is essential. How are we committed to promote this mutual trust? We must network at the local level to understand this global strategy and ideology of fear, and we must create spaces for mutual trust.

When we do that, we are changing the present and dreaming the future.

http://www.commongroundnews.org/article.php?id=3101&lan=en&sid=1&sp=0


La ilaha ill-Allah, Muhammadur Rasulullah
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