Thursday, December 17, 2015

Summit of Muslim Leaders in Silver Springs

Summit of Muslim Leaders | www.AmericanMuslimInstitution.org



Silver Spring, MD, December 16, 2015 – When there is despair, there is always that hope, thank God, the good people reached out to the apprehensive one’s to assure them that they are with them, and will stand by them.

 That is precisely what the Montgomery County Executives did, they called the Muslim leaders and Imams of the county to listen to their concerns and assure their support. It was organized by Imam Faizul Khan of Islamic Society of the Washington Area in Silver Springs, MD.  You can feel the genuineness of each one of the council members, police chief, school board members and other public servants and the county executive. That sentiment was   reciprocated with sincere expression of gratitude by the Muslims present there.

Each one of the officials spoke from their heart, they care about fellow citizens and this gathering was to advance that sense of community, and imbue the sense of belonging to each other, and they were very successful. God bless them.


There are several ways of mitigating the conflicts and nurturing goodwill. I am pleased to share mine.

First a quote from a friend, "Each and every step towards a unifying goal is the key. And a meaningful engagement between polarized mindsets is the only way to begin bridging the gaps and wide divides that separate us from peace and unified action for humanitarian and environmental health and well being."


Last night I was watching the Presidential debate at the press club, and behind me was a group watching.  When Lindsey Graham spoke eloquently about blaming the individuals and not the faith, which is my mantra, I clapped, and they booed.  One of the ladies and her husband beckoned me to join them, and told me they were conservatives and asked about me, I said I am a moderate.  I introduced myself and gave them my card that read, American Muslim Institution. They asked me about Sharia and I gave them a short talk on the topic.

What followed after that was an interesting but a familiar conversation, Deja vu!   It appears that most of the conservatives have memorized certain things about Muslims, and they reel it off.  I don’t get offended, instead I listen to them patiently and share my perspective.  I am sure you have had that experience, with patience, people will learn to respect you, and gradually see your point of view as a courtesy. Melody is a conservative Radio talk show host; and she wants to get me on her show in North Carolina.  I hope a few more will see another point of view, shame on us, we have let them carry the age old narrative forward, we need to do our part in sharing our narrative.  There is no joy greater than living without conflicts with fellow beings.

Amidst the concerns, issues and the gloom, there is hope.  We have to move from estrangement to engagement and things will change. Stuart Varney at Fox News promised not to use the phrase Muslim Terrorist three weeks ago on his show with me, and Sean Hannity is at least softer and clearer about what he is against, and that is the result of positive engagement.  Last night Lindsey Graham spoke up, and there are way too many good people than the fringe element. Look at these people from the County and School board, they gave hope, and they represent American values of acceptance, they are our models and heroes.

 I am short on time with so much going, so I will yield to the lady sitting next to me, who writes for Muslim Matters, when she files the report, I will share that with all.

This is precisely what God wants – for his creation to sit together and demystify the myths about each other and restore the equilibrium.  Quran (49:13) says the best ones among you are those who learn about each other; indeed, when we learn about each other, conflicts fade and solutions emerge.

Thanks to Sayed Naved for printing and distributing the flier of our “Season of Peace” event and thanks to Rev. Casey Kaseman for announcing it. I had the opportunity to announce it as well during my turn.  Thanks to Amjad Humayun for inviting me to the event.









My job became much easier, we have tentatively found Indonesian, Arab, and Subcontinent groups to sing Nasheeds (poetry appreciating Prophet Muhammad (pbub), and if the African American group can confirm, that would be a significant progress.  Rev. Casey Kaseman and Samia Haque will find a Mormon and a Catholic group to sing Christmas Carols, we need two more, I can find one from the Unification Church or the Unitarian Church and the search will be for an Evangelical group.  We also found Hijabi girls to sing National Anthem (This is a different report).

Please join us for the event, this is a God-given opportunity 
this year to further strengthen our bonds on the auspicious occasion of the birth celebrations of Jesus Christ and Prophet Muhammad on 25th and 24th of December respectively. God loves each one of us and showers his blessings each time we make an effort to restore the harmony and cohesiveness of his creation; life and environment.These are the signs of good tidings; offering a new hope and a new beginning for the mankind. Together Christians and Muslims make up nearly half of the world population and it is our duty to do our share of work in restoring harmony and peace on earth for each one of the Seven billion of us. We are all in this together.

Kindly share this link to register for the event: 
https://www.eventbrite.com/e/merry-christmas-milad-mubarak-tickets-20040393356


Thank you, 

Mike Ghouse
(214) 325-1916
Executive Director
www.AmericanMuslimInstitution.org 
A proactive voice for American Muslims
110 Maryland Av, NE, Suite 508
Washington, DC 20002-5606 

Dr. Mike Ghouse is a community consultant, social scientist, thinker, writer, news maker, and a speaker on PluralismInterfaithIslampoliticshuman rightsIndiaIsrael-PalestineTerrorism and foreign policy. Over 3000 Articles have been published on the subjects. He is committed to building cohesive societies and offers pluralistic solutions on issues of the day. More about him in 63 links at www.MikeGhouse.net and bulk of his writings are at TheGhousediary.com   

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