Thursday, April 25, 2019

The book: American Muslim Agenda

If you are a conservative, then grudgingly you'll see the value in what this book offers, and if you are on the left, you want more of it, and if you are moderate, you will dance with joy.

HOSTING A BOOK TALK


The book is about building a cohesive America where each one of us feels secure about our faith, race, ethnicity, culture, sexual and political orientation. Who does not want to live a tension free life at home, workplace, and in the public space? 

The "American Muslim Agenda” serves a two-fold purpose. On the one hand, it separates the chaff from the grain for fellow Americans to see Muslims for who they are and not how the media projects them. On the other hand, it challenges Muslims to restore Islam to its original purpose; that is to create cohesive societies, in our case, a coherent America, where each one of the 323 Million Americans feels proud of his or her uniqueness. 

The book presents many success stories to keep the reader bemused. I am pleased to submit three versions of the blurbs on the book talk. The format can be 10 minutes or 20 minutes presentation with room for Q&A. We want our esteemed guests to go home fully satisfied with all the questions they have had about Islam and Muslims. 

Our conservative friends would grudgingly acknowledge the pathway laid out in the book, while the moderates will dance with joy. If your vision of America is in tune with the book, together as Americans, we can contribute towards the greatness of our nation.



Would this book bring a change? 


Would this bring a change among Muslims towards others and others towards Muslims? Indeed, this book lays out a clear agenda to foster harmony among fellow Americans. It is akin to planting a seed and nurturing to give the beneficence to the next generation.

Some of the reservations we have about Muslims is based on what we have heard from our parents, friends, teachers, pastors, and TV. It is time for us to learn first-hand about them and remove the misunderstandings and live freely. 

It is one of the bold books written about Muslims, and it highlights the sources of extremism and how to cure it.

Unfortunately, some of the Muslim scholars from the past have reduced Islam to a religion of rituals and obedience. This book brings clarity to Muslims and fellow humans and separates the chaff from the wheat for you.

What is the overall theme of your book?


The overall theme of the book is to open people's hearts and minds towards each other. I believe that the ultimate ‘unexpressed’ purpose of humans is to live freely and be comfortable with one's culture, race, religion, ethnicity, sexuality, and individuality.

Why do you think that this book will appeal to readers?

It will appeal to Muslims and Non-Muslims alike, as they have never seen the pristine, pluralistic Islam. Moreover, for the first time in Islamic history, the essence of Islam is explained. Also, for the first time, the book explains twelve values directly from the Quran that contributes towards building cohesive societies with no privileges to one over the other. It is human nature to get along with fellow beings, and this book will resonate with them and pave the path for them to see the light at the end of the tunnel.


TEN TAKE AWAY POINTS FROM THE BOOK

1. The American Muslim Agenda challenges Muslims to think and restore Islam to its original purpose – i.e., to create a cohesive America, where each one of the 323 Million Americans feels secure with his or her faith, race, ethnicity culture, sexual and political orientation. 


2. The American Muslim Agenda paves the way for Muslims to own their mistakes, and remedy them. It corrects how fellow Americans perceive Muslims.


3. Islam is not about imposing (Sharia) your ideas or governing others. Islam is about living your life and letting others live theirs with freedom. That is the original Islam. Islam is about freedom and firmly stands for free will.

4. The essence and purpose of Islam from a humanity’s (Aalameen) perspective for the first time.

5. Never before in Islamic history, twelve values of Islam that contribute to creating secure, orderly and cohesive societies have been articulated. Verses from the Quran fully back each value. Thus, the book becomes a reference manual to teach and learn about Islam.

6. The best way to combat Islamophobia is through education, engagement, and dialogue. There are many success stories narrated including dealing with Fox News, Sean Hannity, Stuart Varney and the supposedly most of the Islamaphobes.

7. This book is the product of twenty years of research and interviews with the right, left, and the moderate fellow humans from many faiths including 150 interviews at Fox News and its many right-leaning guests.

8. Can a Muslim become President of the United States? What does it take, there is a full chapter on the topic?

9. In the end, it is learning to respect the otherness of the other and accepting the God given the uniqueness of each one of the 323 million Americans.

10. There is a whole lot more, and it is all in the book.

Talk Version 1.0

Title of the talk: Muslims making America the Greatest nation on earth.

Americans Muslims are committed to building a cohesive America, an inclusive America where each one of the 323 Million Americans feel secure about his/her faith, race, ethnicity, culture, sexual and political orientation.

When you are free from apprehensions, and connect with fellow workers, the workplace becomes a joy to be. You will give 100% of your heart and mind to your work, and your family benefits from having a whole of you, thus creating a little heaven for yourselves.

Dr. Mike Ghouse, author, public speaker, pluralist, interfaith wedding officiant, and the president of the Center for Pluralism in Washington, DC., will discuss how Muslim efforts in building a cohesive America are working.

He points out that we are Americans, we are free and brave people and must jettison our apprehensions about each other to live freely. Mike advises that if you are a conservative, then grudgingly you'll see a value in what this book offers, and if you are on the left, you want more of it, and the moderates will dance with joy.

He points out that we are Americans, we are free, and the brave people, and must jettison our apprehensions about each other to live freely. How do we accomplish that? It is by knowing each other.

America has always led the world in science, medicine, math, agriculture, automation, information technology, exploration and all the advancements of the human race, and it is time for us to lead the world in building a cohesive nation. The book offers concrete solutions to Americans to make America a great and powerful model nation of inclusion for Americans to enjoy living their lives productively and purposefully, and the world to look up to us to emulate.

We have to assure each other and every American without exception that we are committed to each other's security, prosperity, and peace. Our goal is to reach out to every American who has not been reached before, particularly those who do not understand us. As American Muslims, we uphold, protect, defend and celebrate the values enshrined in our constitution.

Mike will share a few incredible success stories of dealing with our friends on the right and answer questions about Muslim efforts.

The book “American Muslim Agenda” will become a reference manual to knowledge seekers and teachers of Islam, and those who want to see one nation, one people and one America. For Muslims, it is backed up with verses from the Quran. You can order this book from Amazon, Kindle, Barnes & Noble, Google, and other book stores. See the talking points at http://www.AmericanMuslimAgenda.com and Mike’s profile appended at https://www.linkedin.com/inmikeghouse.

Talk Version 2:0

Title of the talk: Muslims making America the Greatest nation on earth
Americans Muslims are committed to building a cohesive America, an inclusive America where each one of the 323 Million Americans feel secure about his/her faith, race, ethnicity, culture, sexual and political orientation.

When you are free from apprehensions, and connect with fellow workers, the workplace becomes a joy to be. You will give 100% of your heart and mind to your work, and your family benefits from having a whole of you with them creating a little heaven for yourselves.

Dr. Mike Ghouse, author, public speaker, pluralist, interfaith wedding officiant, and the President of the Center for Pluralism in Washington, DC., will discuss how Muslim effort is ongoing in building a cohesive America, where each one of the 323 Million Americans feel secure about his/her faith, race, ethnicity, culture, sexual and political orientations.

He points out that we are Americans, we are free and brave people and must jettison our apprehensions about each other to live freely. Mike advises that if you are a conservative, then grudgingly you'll see a value in what this book offers, and if you are on the left, you want more of it, and the moderates will dance with joy.

The book paves the way for Muslims to own their mistakes, remedy them, and correct how fellow Americans perceive Muslims. Mike argues that Islam is not about imposing your ideas or governing others. Instead, Islam is about living your life and letting others live theirs with freedom. It is a bold challenge to Muslims. He shows a narration from humanity's (Aalameen) perspective of the essence and purpose of Islam for the first time in history.

Mike articulates, for the first time in Islamic history, twelve values of Islam that contribute to creating secure, orderly and cohesive societies. He concludes that the best way to combat Islamophobia (and other phobias) is through education, engagement, and dialogue. Mike lays out a clear agenda to foster harmony among fellow Americans. It is akin to planting a seed and nurturing to give the beneficence to the next generation.

Mike believes when Muslims become one with all and defend American values with their souls, they will become part of the American story, and everyone’s language will automatically shift from us vs. them to us, the one nation under God with liberty and justice for all. As American Muslims, we uphold, protect, defend and celebrate the values enshrined in our constitution.

This book will become a reference manual to teachers of Islam and knowledge seekers about Islam, as it is backed up verses from the Quran. You can order his book from Amazon, Kindle, Barnes & Noble, Google, and other book stores. See the talking points at http://www.AmericanMuslimAgenda.com and Mike’s profile appended at https://www.linkedin.com/inmikeghouse.

BOOK - Version 3.0

The American Muslim Agenda is a primer, a blueprint, and a road map for Americans in general and Muslims in particular.

A Muslim is someone who is a conflict mitigater and a goodwill nurturer, following the formula for peaceful societies practiced by Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) and guided by the Quran.

As a community, American Muslims have not developed any concrete plans to extricate themselves out of the chaotic situations, hostility and incessant Islamophobic rhetoric we face. Each time a terrorist acts out, we start praying and wishing that the terrorist not be a Muslim. We are Americans, and we can do better than that.

There is only one America, and all of us are fully integrated parts of that nation. We need to learn to engage with those who are opposed to us, and reassure them that we are all in this together. Mike will share some success stories.

When we start defending America and the American values we are in! We become an integral part of American Fabric. That is the clear objective articulated in this book.
The book is available at Amazon, Kindle, Google, Xlibris, Barnes & Nobles, and other book stores. The softcover is priced at $19.99, and the hardcover is $29.99. It is also available as an eBook.

The American Muslim Agenda will be in the hands of lawmakers, presidential candidates, media persons, lobbyists, think tanks, educators, interfaith activists, CEO, and fellow Americans. The book is about building a cohesive America where each one of us can live securely with our faith, race, ethnicity, and culture.

As American Muslims, we uphold, protect, defend and celebrate the values enshrined in our constitution.

Mike is a public speaker, author, interfaith wedding officiant, a newsmaker and the executive director of the Center for Pluralism in Washington, DC. More about him at https://www.linkedin.com/in/mikeghouse/

Email to: SpeakerMikeGhouse@gmail.com or text (214) 325-1916

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

American Muslim Agenda - What is it?

What is that Americans Muslims want? How close are they to what you want? What can they do about it? What are your issues with each other? If you are a conservative, grudgingly, you'll see the value in this book, and if you are a moderate, you'll dance and sing along with joy.

You and I have a responsibility to create a world where, you, me, and our grandchildren can live without apprehensions. No matter we go, we should feel secure about faith, race, ethnicity, culture and our political and sexual orientation.


Would the book American Muslim Agenda bring attitudinal change among Muslims?  Yes, it will, it’s akin to planting seeds and nurturing it to give the beneficence to the next generation. I know most American Muslims will wholeheartedly subscribe to the refreshed understanding of Islam, we need to expand it to more Americans.

Some of the reservations we have about Muslims and Islam are based on what we have heard from our parents, teachers, clergy, favorite media people and others.  We need to find the truth on our own and find freedom from misunderstandings. It is a blessing to be free.
Muslims have shied away from confronting difficult issues about their faith, and most of them don't even have a clue about the essence of Islam, it was never articulated before in the history of Islam. 

A few medieval scholars have reduced Islam to rituals, five pillars, dhimmi, jizya, sharia, externalities, and enforcement of your rules on to others. That is not Islam, and most Muslims can recite verses that Islam is about free will. God uploaded free will into Adam’s DNA, and emphasized it in the Quran, the prophet practiced ‘freewill’ and established examples for it. Sadly, Muslims know the truth but were bullied into silence with fatwa bombs. All I have done is articulated what Muslims believe, but dared not say it. The book is the voice of the majority of ‘American’ Muslims.

This book is a product of twenty years of research and thousands of discussions in which Muslims, non-Muslims, and “Islamophobes” have participated in it, including debates on Fox News with Sean Hannity, Stuart Varney, Pamela Geller, Brigitte Gabrielle, Robert Spencer, Jamie Glazov, Raymond Ibrahim, Walid Shoebat, Wafa Sultan, and several others.  

Islam is about living your life and letting others live theirs. Islam is about building cohesive societies where all of God's creation lives with dignity and freedom. In God’s universe, we are merely a speck, and no one is more privileged than the other. If you are a moderate individual of any faith, you will find the book in tune with you.

It is time to go beyond the five pillars of Islam, and I hope the Imams and Muslim scholars who are free thinkers would appreciate the contents of the book. This book may indeed become a reference manual for teaching Islamic values that contribute to creating a better world for all humanity.

The American Muslim Agenda offers guidance to Muslims to be one with all, and it voices what Muslims believe and live with and empowers them to live their lives and let others live with free will.  The book opens the door to people of other faiths to shed their biases and join hands in creating a world of safety, security, and harmony for all humanity.

Islam is a public religion, and Muslims don't own it exclusively. You are invited to participate in discussions, including your faith.  The book is expected to initiate conversations about the nature of Islam and fellow humans. I welcome your criticism (after reading the book).

You can get the book by calling 1-888-795-4274 x 4528 or get it from Amazon online or a book store. You can find the talking points at www.AmericanMuslimAgenda.com.


Dr. Mike Ghouse is committed to building a cohesive America and offers pluralistic solutions on issues of the day. His new book, the “American Muslim Agenda” is about everything you wanted to know about Muslims. The book is available at Xlibris and Amazon. Mike is a public speaker, author, interfaith wedding officiant, and the executive director of the Center for Pluralism in Washington, DC. More about him at https://www.linkedin.com/in/mikeghouse/

Tuesday, January 2, 2018

Interfaith Marriages - Lynslei weds Adam

LYNSLEI WEDS ADAM ON JAN 1, 2018
January 1, 2018, Washington, DC – Dr. Mike Ghouse officiated the wedding ceremony today, and this is the first interfaith wedding of the year. Mike has been officiating the interfaith weddings for the last eight years and is a licensed interfaith wedding officiant in the United States.

When people find it difficult to listen to each other, let alone understand each other, Adam and Lynslei are setting a new standard – that of respecting the otherness of the other and accepting the God given uniqueness of each other. They will be showing us the way, in effect they are saying, “look we are different, but yet we are determined to create harmony.”
Lynslei’s faith of Islam brings the values of equality and dignity to the relationship, whereas Adam’s Christian tradition has taught him forgiveness, repentance and unconditional love in marriage.
How sweet it is, that these two traditions will bring fullness to their relationship, with values from Christian and Muslims traditions.

When two people fall in love with each other, Marriage is the most important milestone of that relationship, and it is the biggest event of their life and must be celebrated and cheered by one and all.
Indeed, the Holy Quran says, God has created all species in pairs and has made one for the other, and he puts love between two souls which brings them together. And as that union takes place, God is the happiest. God is about harmony and marriage is a step to bring harmony between two people. Indeed, they are very patriotic Americans; they are contributing the idea of one nation under God by coming together.
Mike has officiated a range of weddings between people of different faiths including Atheists in a secular marriage. Wedding Sermons are customized to reflect the faiths of the individuals. More about it at www.InterfaithMarriages.org
Mike is a Community consultant actively engaged in research and activism and offers pluralistic solutions on issues of the day. He will continue to focus his energies on ensuring a safe and secure America for all, where no one has to worry about his race, faith, ethnicity or other God-given uniqueness and live his/her life without apprehensions.

Sunday, December 31, 2017

2018’s Message of Optimism - Happy New Year

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We wish you, your family and friends the very best of 2018. Each New Year is a milestone in one’s life. Indeed, it is as much a day of reckoning as it is of celebrations. Reckoning involves reflecting on the reasons you did not get what you had wanted in 2017, and celebrating for what you got by cheering for the effort you made to be where you are today.

Let’s go forward, if I were to ask you on 12/31/2018, that is a year from now, how was your 2o18? You may respond in one of the following ways;
1. Nothing Changed, same o same.
2. Things have gotten worse
3. Celebrating the achievements
4. Lost or gained weight
5. Relationship entanglements and distanglements
6. Financial soundness or mess
7. Spent good time with family and friends
Let’s focus on two extremes; things that got worse and celebrating the achievements. The question is did you want it to be good or worse? Did you get what you want? Did you work for getting what you got? Did you at least plan?
Nothing happens by itself; things happen because someone causes them or drives them to happen. Did you let others drive your life or did you drive it yourselves? You cannot go on vacation unless your dream about it, think about it and plan on it. You cannot buy anything unless your start it with a want. Unlike the planets, stars and many other things in the universe which are programmed to function precisely, humans were given a free will to chart their own course. God does not do anything; He simply cannot do good things for you and not for others, God is not like that, God is an idea about justness, evenness and balance.
He has laid everything out for you to pursue your own happiness and peace; it is up to you to get it.
Here is a simple way of getting what you want! The first thing is to know what you want; you should know where you are driving to when you turn the ignition on.
Buy a dozen 5x3 Cards or fold three regular blank white papers and cut them out into 12 pieces. Write the following down on top of each piece and place them in your pocket or purse. As you start driving, making coffee, watching TV or whatever you are doing, take one piece at a time and start thinking about that item, until you have clarity of what you want keep thinking. Pull the car over or go to a coffee shop and sit down and write your thoughts in bullets. Did you know you can day dream while taking a shower? You can think better sitting on the crown? Here are your 12 or more cards to jot down the points as to what you want out of each item of life.


1. Family
2. Friends
3. Profession
4. Income
5. Health
6. Vacation
7. Volunteerism
8. Spirituality
9. Retirement
10. Self-improvement
11. A new image
12. …..
An on and on.....       Wake up to the day's most important news.
Bottom of Form
At the end of the day or two, take a picture of each card/paper and save it on your cell phone. One evening sit down for a few hours and put it all together. This would be your guideline to go by, and this would be your plan for 2018. The more you stare at it, the more it becomes a part of you.
12/31/2018

If you were to receive my note on 12/31/18, and without any doubt you will. If you’ve received this note, you will get that one too unless you block me. You can proudly say that your life was as planned on 12/31/2017. Why do I do this? It is simply because my mission in life is to build cohesive work places, communities and nations and open people’s hearts minds and souls to fellow beings. Everyone has a purpose in life, find yours now. Mine is to make life meaningful to as many people as I can.
I am pleased to share what I do.
Center for Pluralism is a non-profit organization founded in 1996 (as Foundation for Pluralism). It is based on a simple principle; the more we know about each other, fewer the misunderstandings would be.
CFP is committed to vigorously promoting and advancing pluralism in the realm of religion, politics, social and cultural aspects of life. We have published over 3500 articles on promoting harmony and reconciliation, appeared on 300 national TV shows, addressed in 700 national Radio talk shows and produced hundreds of programs. We need your wisdom, wealth and work to continue this work.
CFP will continue to focus its energies on ensuring a safe and secure America for all, where no one has to worry about his race, faith, ethnicity or other God-given uniqueness and live her life without apprehensions.
Our programs are designed to prevent chaos and maintain coherence and stability with the ongoing changes. We need to prepare the next generation to cope with these changes and minimize potential conflicts with ease. No American needs to worry about losing his or her way of life. As Americans we uphold, protect, defend and celebrate the values enshrined in our Constitution.
The Center for Pluralism has established over 20 annual programs to bring Americans together on religious, social, political and cultural aspects of life. The more we know each other, the less conflicts we would have. Please review our programs and except the Religious workshops and Unity Day all other programs can be run as your sponsorship for $5,000/year, but you can contribute any sum that is in your budget. Please review them in this mini-Brochure at - http://centerforpluralism.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/04/4.-CPF-Programs-4-Pages.pdf
CFP will be an antidote to Anti-Semitism, Islamophobia, Racism, Homophobia, Hindu phobia, Xenophobia, Misogyny and other phobias. Through research and activism we are establishing a respectful space for Pluralism with the policy makers, interfaith groups, both Republicans and Democrats and of course the media and you!
The Center for Pluralism will become the energy to give a solid cohesive social structure to our nation. By the year 2025, there will not be an office, school, playground, college, restaurant, theater, train, bus or a work place where people of different faiths, races, ethnicities and national origins do not work, interact, play, live and marry together. This is bound to create conflicts in airports, public spaces, board rooms, and in bedrooms as well as places of worship, work places, politics, eateries, and schools.
We have a responsibility to shape the future of our society so our kids, grandkids and us can retire in peace and live without apprehensions.
Should Muslims Celebrate New Year? It is about building an integrated Americahttps://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/fatwa-should-muslims-celebrate-new-year_us_5a465e47e4b06cd2bd03df69
Let’s stay focused on peace and prosperity and not conflicts and confusion. In 2018, you will see me a lot more of me on National TV and Radio shows, and lot more activism and research. Of course I will jump with both my feet in political campaigns to work to ensure checks and balances in our system. The House and Senate must be given a simple majority to two different parties and not the same, most of the evil decisions were made by our government when all the three; President, Senate and House were from the same party. We have to break this to make sure America remains the America we all want and dream. An America that is good for every one with no exceptions.

# # #
A short Bio

Mike Ghouse is committed to his life mission of building cohesive work places, communities and nations. He works for an America where every one of the 322 million Americans should feel secure without apprehension or fear of the other.

He is one of the 5 people in the world who is actively pursuing research, activism and teaching Pluralism.  Just Google and find a tremendous amount of work on pluralism in religion, politics, society and culture.  Mike defines Pluralism as an attitude of “respecting the otherness of other” and accepting the God-given uniqueness of each one of us.

He is a pluralist, thinker, writer, activist and a speaker on Pluralism, Interfaith, politics, Islam, human rights and foreign policy including India and Israel-Palestine. He is a news maker, interfaith wedding officiant and a community consultant and offers pluralistic solutions on issues of the day.

Happy New Year ya’ll. God bless you and God bless America.

Mike Ghouse, President Center for Pluralism Washington

Monday, December 11, 2017

Roy Moore or Doug Jones?

Full article may appear at "the hill" later tonight or Huffpost in the morning and will appear hear as well. 

We believe that the best governance happens when we have checks and balances in place and the best thing that Americans can do at this time is to keep the house majority with the Republicans and give the Senate majority to the Democrats. That will prevent slam dunking the bills through the Congress and the Senate and due discussions will take place for the benefit of Americans. If you look back, you will find that all the bad decisions were made when the President, Senate and Congress are from the same party. For the sake of America and integrity of our government, we hope the Alabamians do the right thing. 

Mike Ghouse, America first and not Republicans or Democrats




# # #

Friday, November 20, 2015

Muslims against ISIS rally on the steps of Lincoln Memorial

PRESS RELEASE

Mike Ghouse (214) 325-1916
Mike@AmericanMuslimInstitution.org
website: www.AmericanMuslimInstitution.org


American Muslims against ISIS gather up on the steps of Lincoln Memorial

Washington, DC, November 19, 2015 – Muslims around the world and particularly Americans Muslims have been sick of the terrorists, particularly the ISIS and the Al-Qaeda guys ever since they started terrorizing the lives of innocent people. We mourn the loss of lives in France, Lebanon, Syria, Iraq, Nigeria and elsewhere in the world and firmly stand against the terrorists.


Given the short notice prior to the Thanksgiving weekend, the Muslims of Washington, DC have organized a gathering of Americans of different faiths to come together on the steps of Lincoln Memorial and make the statements of condemnations.
We hope this event effectively conveys a message to the terrorists that the world is against them, and that we are all in this together; opposing terrorism and condemning ISIS.  


You are all invited to join us on the steps of Lincoln Memorial:



The purpose of this gathering is to send a clear message to the ISIS and their ilk, that American Muslims are angry about their actions. They are to be charged for the violations of human rights, forcing women into slavery, conversions at gun point, harassment of Christians, Yazidis, Shias, Jews, Sunnis and other minorities, and most certainly creating chaos and abusing the name of Islam. 

We cannot tolerate any of these acts and we urge our president to speak out in behalf of fellow humans,  and give them three days notice to back off, surrender, and repent for their actions or face the consequences.

We invite Americans of all faiths and no faiths to join us in standing up against ISIS.  Yes, we the Muslims are as angry as average American. Indeed, we are all in this together.

We pledge that we are one nation under the flag, indivisible with liberty and justice for all.


Please join us on the steps of Lincoln Memorial.

# # #


SUPPORTING ORGANIZATIONS 

We will be listing as many participating organizations as we can. Please send an email with the name of your organization, website and your phone number,  and we will add to the list below.


01. ADAMS Center, All Dulles Area Muslim Society
02. American Muslim Institution, Washington, DC
03. Washington Area Jews for Jewish Muslim Understanding
04. Geotrees, An Intercultural Crossroads for the History of the Future
05. Islamic Community Center of Potomac
06. Foundation for Pluralism
07. The world Organization for Resources development and Education.
08. Muslims for Peace, Justice and Progress 
09. United Maryland Muslim Council
10. Howard County Muslim Council
11. UMA Interfaith Alliance
12. Muslim Community Center of Maryland
13. Montgomery County Muslim Foundation
14. Islamic Center of Greater Toledo 
15. Islamic Center of Long Island
16. IMANA International Collaboration
17. UMMAA Broadcasting
18. Hillside Islamic Center New Hyde Park NY

We appreciate the PSA announcements from Stuart Varney and Jennie Lubart of Fox News and we invite them to cover this event. 

Friday, July 3, 2015

Happy 4th - Muslims are an integral part of American Heritage

Happy 4th - Muslims are an integral part of American Heritage
http://theghousediary.blogspot.com/2015/07/happy-4th-muslims-are-integral-part-of.html


Upon declaration of our independence on July 4, 1776, two of the first three heads of states who recognized the sovereignty of the United States were Muslims and one of them was a Muslim from India.

Americans, Indians and Muslims have a connection since the very beginning of our independence. We were all opposed to colonial rule, and fought them and chased the British out of America, but they continued to rule India through divide and conquer for another 150 years.

Morocco was the first country to recognize the independence of the United States of America, signing the Moroccan-American Treaty of Friendship, the first of its kind. Friesland, one of the seven United Provinces of the Dutch Republic, was the next to recognize American independence (February 26, 1782) and Tippu Sultan, the King of Mysore State (India) was the third. According to Dr. Range Gowda, Tippu Sultan's historiographer, the congratulatory letter to America is preserved in a French Library. Tippu celebrated America's independence by bursting fire crackers in Srirangapatna.



What does July 4th mean to Muslims and Indians?

It means everything and the biggest thing is freedom. Islam is indeed about freedom of conscience, justice and liberty.

The Pledge of Allegiance is one of the most cherished statements for Muslims, "One Nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all." There are several verses in the Quran that assert those values, so it's like coming home for Muslims.

The concept of equality is etched and nurtured in the Muslim psyche in every ritual and spiritual practice of Islam. Prophet Muhammad delivered the following words in his last sermon, "All mankind is from Adam and Eve, an Arab has no superiority over a non-Arab nor a non-Arab has any superiority over an Arab; also a white has no superiority over black nor does a black have any superiority over white except by piety and good action." Muslims hold this declaration close to their hearts and as American Muslims, "We hold these truths to be self-evident..."

The raging battle among Americans to keep the state and church apart resonates with Muslims living in America as the Quran speaks out to them, 49:13- "O mankind! We have created you male and female, and have made you nations and tribes that ye may know one another. The noblest of you, in the sight of God, is the best in conduct. God Knows and is Aware." Indeed, knowledge leads to understanding and understanding to acceptance of the otherness of others and appreciate a different point of view without having to agree with it.

Honoring merit appeals to Muslims: you can be who you want to be and Muslims bpast about their ability to rise on the basis of their merit. The Prophet tells his own daughter that she will not get a free pass to paradise because she is a daughter of the prophet; she has to earn it on her own through good deeds to fellow beings, such is the emphasis placed on merit and individual responsibility. That is what capitalism, democracy and America are all about.

Every immigrant in general and a Muslim in particular loves the idea that you are innocent until proven guilty. They see the wholesomeness of justice in America and they love America for it. An observant Muslim recites at least 17 times a day that God alone is the judge and we must refrain from judging others.

On July 4, 2015 we will be celebrating the 239th birthday of America. It is time to reflect upon our journey from the historic declaration of independence on July 4th, 1776 to July 4th, 2015.
Our Founding Fathers had a vision and laid the ground work for a sustainable cohesive America for centuries to come, " We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness."

We have come a long way, and still have miles to go to realize the above truths, and to fulfill the dream of Martin Luther King Jr. Indeed, the last two months have packed an incredible amount of events in our history. The pulling down of the confederate Flag in several states after the tragic events in Charleston, South Carolina gives us a lot of hope, the Supreme court's landmark decision to make same sex marriage legal brings freedom to the GLBT community; yet another decision by the Supreme Court brought freedom to those who were vulnerable, the sick and the poor Americans. Thanks to President Obama for making health care a reality for all Americans. The affordable care Act is the law of the land now.

First, I pray for the spirit of that freedom to be born again, again and again every year, for eternity. Indeed, we are the land of the free and the brave. The whole world looks up to America with admiration, although we still have a few more milestones to achieve.

Donald Sterling, the basketball billionaire and Don Imus, the popular American Radio host and several others faced severe retribution for racial slurs. Rick Sanchez and countless Senators and Congress persons were taken to task for making Anti-Semitic comments. Now thank God for the Supreme Court, no one will dare abuse the freedom of these three communities: African Americans, Jews and the LGBT community.
Two more communities, among many need such freedom; women are still not getting equal pay, and I hope the Republicans will join the Democrats and pass that bill.
Who is left behind? Hispanic Immigrants and Muslims!

In 1986, President Reagan brought relief to 3 million undocumented aliens through his amnesty program. Now President Obama is working on freeing 11 million aliens from the tension of separation with their family members. As a nation we need to collectively reflect on the issue and do the right thing; legalize those here with agreed upon conditions.

In recent years, American Muslims have become an easy target for abuse without any consequence. Some US presidential candidates top the list for bigotry, having said that they would not hire a Muslim in their cabinet.

The problem is two-sided: we the Muslims are not connected enough with mainstream society for a vast majority of Americans to stand up for us, empathize with us, or even understand the truth about us that we are no different than them in our endeavors and aspirations of life. We need to get out of our shells and be part of American society.

We must however express our gratitude to the millions of Americans who have stood up for us, compelled by their sense of justness and fair play after 9/11 and as recently as the Phoenix and Garland rallies.

As Muslims we are making serious efforts to be fully participating and contributing members of American society for the security, peace and prosperity of our homeland. We have unequivocally stood up for free speech.

As American Muslims we uphold, protect, defend and celebrate the values enshrined in the U.S. constitution. Our faith reinforces the creed of "One Nation under God, with liberty and justice for all."

We at America Together Foundation, will take bold congenial steps on behalf of Muslims to get ourselves on a par with the other communities who had previously endured abuse, and with the support of all Americans, we will shame them for their bigotry.

I urge every Muslim to reach out to their fellow Americans to share the joy of July 4th God willing, Muslims will be celebrating July 4th2016 en masse all over the nation. We are going to be unfurling big plans soon. The more integrated we are, the safer it is for every one of the 318 million plus Americans.

What does July 4th mean to me?

The very first step on American soil puts a smile on an immigrant's face; if not you, it has happened to your parents, grand or great grandparents. It's the exuberance you witness on a baby's face when she stands up for the first time, it is the exhilaration you see when a toddler eats the food on his own for the first time, or the relief written all over the face of a student when he or she graduates. Indeed, it is an expression of freedom I felt upon arrival in New York some thirty five years ago. My journey continues as I get ready to celebrate another July 4th.

Mike Ghouse is a speaker, thinker, writer, pluralist, TV-Radio commentator and a human rights activist committed to building cohesive societies and offering pluralistic solutions on issues of the day. His info is in 63 links at MikeGhouse.net -- Mike is also president of America Together Foundation.