HOME | This group is about Muslims and their civic responsibilities, it is not about religious practices but simply about learning and creating a religious, social and civic space for themselves in the community of faiths This site is for all Muslims, and most are Moderate Muslims. More info on right panel.

Monday, October 27, 2014

What's the appeal of a caliphate?

It is one of the best articles about the appeal of a caliphate by BBC Magazine, appended below.   The age old label "rightly guided caliphs" is apt, indeed, caliphate clearly ended with them, what followed was monarchies and not consensual rulership. 

The Good caliphate is a fantasy that Muslims have been eagerly searching in vain. A genuine democracy can fulfill that dream of governance by consensus and the longing for unity.  I don't think Muslims would ever want a Khilafat, there ain't no one but rogues to head it.

No Muslims is safe around other Muslims, we are hell bent on declaring each other less of a Muslim or no Muslim, and have no qualms in denying the rights of minorities among us. A Sunni is not safe in Iraq, a Shia is not safe in Pakistan, an Ahmadiyya is not safe in most of the Muslim  nations. Who wants the bloody Khilafat? 

Do we have enough Muslims who genuinely believe in Qur'an and the concepts of universalism loaded in the phrases "Rabbul Aalameen" and "Rahmatul Aalameen"? Indeed, the word Aalameen is the mother of the word inclusion.  We have reduced Islam from a system to create harmony and peace in the world to an exclusive political entity.

We don't need the wretched tyrants to be Caliphs, and it will never be by consensus, we are deeply divided to even respect the otherness of others. The Maududis and Qutubs have brainwashed many a Muslims to believe that "Islam" should be imposed on others, and people must be compelled to obey - hell, that is not Islam at all.

We need to hold a special funeral prayers to bury the idea of Caliphate, and pray for a genuine form of democratic governance, based on how prophet ran it in Madinah, and not the nuts after the Rashidun.

If Madinah was ruled by the Madinah treaty, then it was not an Islamic government, it was rather a pluralistic governance. We need research on the subject - if there ever was an Islamic government?

Thank you,

Mike Ghouse
(214) 325-1916
Author | Speaker | Pluralist

Washington DC | Dallas TX 
# # #

What's the appeal of a caliphate?
Courtesy BBC

Map entitled "Empire of the Caliphs Middle of the 8th Century" 

In June the leader of Islamic State declared the creation of a caliphate stretching across parts of Syria and Iraq - Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi named himself the caliph or leader. Edward Stourton examines the historical parallels and asks what is a caliphate, and what is its appeal? 

When Islamic State (IS) declared itself a caliphate in June this year, and its leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi claimed the title of caliph, it seemed confirmation of the group's reputation for megalomania and atavistic fantasy. Al-Baghdadi insisted that pledging allegiance to this caliphate was a religious obligation on all Muslims - an appeal which was immediately greeted by a chorus of condemnation across the Middle East.

But is it dangerous to underestimate the appeal of IS? Al-Baghdadi's brutal regime does not, of course, remotely conform to the classical Muslim understanding of what a caliphate should be, but it does evoke an aspiration with a powerful and increasingly urgent resonance in the wider Muslim world. 

The last caliphate - that of the Ottomans - was officially abolished 90 years ago this spring. Yet in a 2006 Gallup survey of Muslims living in Egypt, Morocco, Indonesia and Pakistan, two-thirds of respondents said they supported the goal of "unifying all Islamic countries" into a new caliphate. 

Why do so many Muslims subscribe to this apparently unrealisable dream? The answer lies in the caliphate's history.

Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi in Mosul, Iraq in July

Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi at his first public appearance in Mosul, Iraq in July

The Arabic khalifa means a representative or successor, and in the Koran it is linked to the idea of just government - Adam, and then David and Solomon, are each said to be God's khalifa on earth. And when the Prophet Mohammed died in 632 the title was bestowed on his successor as the leader of the Muslim community, the first of the Rashidun, the four so-called "Rightly Guided Caliphs" who ruled for the first three decades of the new Islamic era. 

These four were, according to Reza Pankhurst, author of The Inevitable Caliphate, all appointed with popular consent. He argues that their era established an ideal of a caliph as "the choice of the people… appointed in order to be responsible to them, apply Islamic law and ensure it's executed". He adds that the true caliph "is not above the law".

Find out more

Listen to The Idea of the Caliphate, broadcast on Analysis on BBC Radio 4

Shia Muslims challenge this version of history - they believe that the first two caliphs effectively staged a coup to frustrate the leadership claims of the Prophet's cousin Ali - and this dispute about the early caliphate is the source of Islam's most enduring schism. But to today's Sunni Muslims, many of them living under autocratic regimes, the ideal of a caliphate built on the principle of government by consent is likely to have a powerful appeal.

Another significant source of the caliphate's appeal today is the memory it stirs of Muslim greatness. The era of the Rightly Guided Caliphs was followed by the imperial caliphates of the Umayyads and Abbasids. 

"Seventy years after the Prophet's death, this Muslim world stretched from Spain and Morocco right the way to Central Asia and to the southern bits of Pakistan, so a huge empire that was all… under the control of a single Muslim leader," says historian Prof Hugh Kennedy. "And it's this Muslim unity, the extent of Muslim sovereignty, that people above all look back to."

Abd-ar-Rahman III (889- 961). Emir and Caliph of Al-Andalus

Abd-ar-Rahman III (889- 961) - Emir and Caliph of Al-Andalus

This Islamic Golden Age was also marked by great intellectual and cultural creativity - the Abbasid court in Baghdad valued literature and music, and fostered world-changing advances in medicine, science and mathematics.

Yet these dynasties extended their rule so far, and so fast, that it became increasingly difficult for any one lineage to control all Muslim lands. As power fragmented, it was not just a political dilemma for any particular dynasty, but also a theological challenge to the very idea of the caliphate. The power of unity was closely linked to the idea of a caliph - yet it only took just over a century of the Muslim faith for the world to see parallel - and even competing - caliphates emerge. 

The Sunni theologian Sheikh Ruzwan Mohammed argues: "While you do have two caliphs on earth proclaiming that they're the representatives of the Muslim community at this point, and more deeply that they are the shadow of God on earth, Muslims at that point were very pragmatic, and they acknowledged the fact that there could be more than one caliph representing the benefits and the concerns of the Muslim community - and that was also understood and accepted by Muslim theologians." 

Mongols under the leadership of Hulagu Khan storming and capturing Baghdad in 1258, from the 'Jami al-Tawarikh'

The Mongol siege of Baghdad, 1258 

The Abbasid caliphate lasted for half a millennium before coming to a brutal end in 1258. When Baghdad fell to the Mongols, the last of the city's caliphs was rolled in a carpet and trampled to death under the hooves of Mongol horses - this was, bizarrely, a mark of respect, as the Mongols believed that people of rank should be killed without their blood being shed. 

The institution of the caliphate, however, survived. Members of the Abbasid family were installed as titular caliphs in Cairo by the Mamluks, the main Sunni Islamic power of the day. They were more ornaments to the Mamluk court than anything else, but merely by existing they preserved the ideal of a single leader behind whom all Muslims could unite. So the title was still there for the taking when a new Islamic empire arose. Early in the 16th Century it passed - in slightly murky circumstances - to the Ottoman sultans, who ruled a new Islamic world power for a further 400 years.

The caliphate was finally extinguished by Kemal Ataturk, the father of modern Turkey, in 1924. He believed the abolition of the institution was essential to his campaign to turn what was left of the empire into a 20th Century secular nation state. The last Ottoman caliph was expelled from Istanbul to live out a life of cultured exile in Paris and on the Cote d'Azur. 

Mustafa Kemal Ataturk  
Mustafa Kemal Ataturk

But the institution he represented had by then existed for nearly 1300 years, and the impact of its abolition on Muslim intellectual life was profound. Salman Sayyid, who teaches at Leeds University and is the author of Recalling the Caliphate, compares it to Charles I's execution, which opened up so many profound questions about the roles of parliament and the crown. In the same way, he says, Muslim thinkers in the 1920s suddenly found they had to ask fundamental questions they had never confronted before: "Do Muslims need to live in an Islamic State? What should that state be like?"

By the mid 20th Century leaders like Egypt's Gamal Abdel Nasser had come up with an answer to those questions - the ideology known as pan-Arabism offered a kind of secular caliphate, and during the 1950s Nasser even established something called the United Arab Republic, which joined Egypt and Syria. 

But everything changed in the Middle East with the foundation of the State of Israel, and Pankhurst argues that Pan-Arabism was wrecked on the rock of Israeli military might. "Pan Arabism drew its legitimacy from the fact that it was going to return the Arabs to their position of glory and liberate Palestine," he says. "When we had the abject defeat of 1967 (the Six Day War) it exposed a hollowness to the ideology."

Pankhurst belongs to Hizb ut Tahrir, an organisation founded in the 1950s to campaign for the restoration of the caliphate, and he argues that the revival of the idea has been driven by a general disenchantment with the political systems under which most Muslims have been living. "When people talk about a caliphate… they are talking about a leader who's accountable, about justice and accountability according to Islamic law," he says. "That stands in stark contrast to the motley crew of dictators, kings, and oppressive state-security type regimes you have, which have no popular legitimacy at all." 

The regimes that dominated the Middle East during the late 20th Century did not like Hizb ut Tahrir - unsurprisingly, in view of its ideology. Pankhurst spent nearly four years in an Egyptian jail.

In the early days of the Arab Spring, the revolutions in countries like Tunisia, Egypt and Libya were interpreted in Western capitals as evidence that the Muslim future lay with democracy. Then in Egypt came the overthrow of the democratically-elected Muslim Brotherhood government by the army under General Abdel Fatah al-Sisi - and then came the horrors of Islamic State amid the bloody chaos of civil strife in Syria and Iraq. 

Egypt's ousted President Mohammed Morsi inside the defendant's cage at his trial  
Egypt's ousted President Mohammed Morsi inside the defendant's cage at his trial 

"Many people will say that IS begins with al-Sisi's coup," says Salman Sayyid of Leeds University. "We right now have a growing gap of legitimacy in most governments that rule the Muslim peoples - and that gap isn't closing… One way of thinking about the caliphate is really a quest for Muslims to have autonomy. The idea that you should have capacity to write your own history becomes very strong and for Muslims I think the caliphate is the instrument for trying to write their own history." 

Many classical Sunni scholars challenge the very notion that the caliphate is a political project. Sheikh Ruzwan Mohammed, for example, argues that the key to the caliphate is really spiritual. "I think the Islamic State should come from within," he says. "It should be an Islamic State first and foremost of mind and soul." And the overwhelming majority, even of those who do believe that a new caliphate is a realistic political objective, completely reject the violence espoused by the self-styled Islamic State.

But IS has skilfully exploited the elements in the caliphate's history which best serve its purposes. The historian Hugh Kennedy has pointed out, for example, that their black uniforms and flags deliberately echo the black robes the Abbasids adopted as their court dress in the 8th Century, thus recalling Islam's Golden Age. And their original title - the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant - harks back to the days when there was no national border between the two countries, because both territories were part of the great Islamic caliphate. 

The success of IS does, in a grim way, reflect what a powerful and urgent aspiration the Caliphate has become. The IS project is certainly megalomaniac and atavistic, but it is building on an idea that is much more than a fantasy.

Listen toThe Idea of the Caliphate, broadcast on Analysis on BBC Radio 4

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Muslim Princess Erminia (1581 AD) at Dallas Museum of Arts


Dr. Shariff and I went to Dallas Museum of Arts on 10/22/14, and stumbled upon this picture of a Muslim princess from 1581.

There was a nice painting of Adam & Eve and several other historical paintings, statues etc.

Mike Ghouse

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Severe Warning to Terrorists - the big red poster

The acronyms SOB, AH, BS and others are certainly uncouth, but they effectively communicate a purposeful message, hence I made that choice.  The Warning poster to Terrorist is a double edged sword and is at the bottom - the big red poster.

The following comments have been received against the poster below.

  1. sometimes your brain goes on strike I guess”,
  2. “Don’t jeopardize”
  3. “Who gave you the authority to represent Muslims?”
  4.  “Not appropriate and safe for you in today's hostile environment.”
  5.  “this is a mindless drivel”
  6. “You are not qualified to speak for Islam”
  7.  “Do you think your severe warning will have any darn effect on these fanatics”
  8. I second it”
  9. “it is appropriate response”.

In a learning environment, good thoughts and concrete ideas are developed with criticism and feedback; here is why this kind of response is needed. 

  1. Don't bark at the religion for the acts of bad guys. Punishment is set for bad acts, to restore the trust in a given society. When a Rapist is running around in a neighborhood, everyone is apprehensive, but when the guy is caught and nailed, peace of mind is restored in the neighborhood. Instead of catching the guy, if we blame his raising, his family, his religion, his race or nation, and his imam, rabbi, pastor or pundit – we will not restore peace. I intend to aggressively communicate this idea, the right idea, and intend to speak at various law enforcement agencies as well as religious institutions.  
  2. The criminal ought to know that he will be punished; we will not allow the poor alibi of religion, not at all. The Law enforcement and the media people also need to get this in their heads, the purpose of investigations and chasing the bad guys is to restore trust and not to aggravate by barking at a non-entity like Religion. The more you bark at criminal’s religion, race or ethnicity, the worse it gets. You cannot shoot, kill, hang, beat or bury the religion, then why bark at it?

  3. 72 Virgins are promised. Both the terrorists and the communicators of the problem (Media and Politicians) to the world at large have gotten it wrong. The poor guy needs to be outraged at the recruiters that he was duped, and there are no 72 virgins waiting for him, instead the SOB will rot in Jail if we Americans get him, or killed mercilessly if he is caught by the opposite party. No Geneva conventions will be observed by either the terrorist or his chasers.  The Media needs to stop the BS of propagating the falsity with nothing to back up in the Qur'an.

  4. Both the criminal and the law enforcement (coupled with the media and politicians) must be aware that it is the Sin, and not the sinner we are after. The clarity should prevent us from being unjust.  We should not be abusive in disciplining or punishing the wrong doer. As a civil society, we cannot become the very evil we want to eradicate.
  5. We should seek the criminal to lead us to the source of recruiting material and the recruiters by mitigating his punishment. 
  6. The Challenge to “read the right translation/interpretation” of Qur'an applies to both the criminal and the law enforcement. I am certain, the criminal will become a genuine repenter, and the law enforcement will not buy or propagate the dished out non-sense in the market or bark irrelevantly.

This is the right time to forge peace to the society in general, and American society in particular by boldly and loudly getting people to get the message, and i.e.,

I am being assertive, never has any Muslim or other communicated this so clearly and it is time we do that, thank God for the opportunities he has blessed us with to find solutions.   If I don't, no one will speak, and I sincerely hope many of us to speak up, do it on your own or join me.

It is time we separate the evil from good.

Bottom line is to free Islam and Muslims from the stupid stereotyping, and focus on punishing the bad guys and restoring trust in the society. 

You SOB, you are the damned murderer, you messed up the peace, and your ass will nailed big time.

Don’t give me the BS about your job, childhood, parents, kids, siblings, spouse, imam, rabbi, pastor or the pundit. You did it and you'll pay for it.

I am not stupid to buy in your argument that your religion made you do that, and then bark at the religion endlessly. AH, you are the bad guy and you are going to pay for it. I am here to restore justice in the society and not be detracted and scream at your religion like a stupid ass. I can hang you, shoot you, bury you and beat you up to restore justice and trust in the society, and that is my goal

 Note: Mr. Terrorist, I don't condemn you, it is your sin I condemn. If you claim to be a Muslim, just remember, those guys who recruited you, and cheated you with  false promises of Hoories and virgins in paradise were dead wrong. There is no such thing nor is it mentioned in Qur'an, instead you will rot in jail for life. Would you turn in your recruiters for cheating you? Would you read the correct translations of Qur'an, we might minimize your sentence?

This should be the attitude of Law enforcement
Authorized by Mike Ghouse, World Muslim Congress.

Thank you


Mike Ghouse

(214) 325-1916 text/talk
Mike Ghouse is a public speaker, thinker, writer and a commentator on Pluralism at work place, politics, religion, society, gender, race, culture, ethnicity, food and foreign policy. He is commentator on Fox News and syndicated Talk Radio shows and a writer at major news papers including Dallas Morning News and Huffington Post.  All about him is listed in several links at www.MikeGhouse.net and his writings are at www.TheGhousediary.com and 10 other blogs. He is committed to building cohesive societies and offers pluralistic solutions on issues of the day.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

‘Islamic Jew-Hatred': It’s NOT in the Quran

Why would God want his creation to hate fellow Creation - when he says, whether you are a Jew, Christians or other, if you take care of fellow humans, you have your reward with me.

Mike Ghouse

Courtesy of Beliefnet

Common Word, Common Lord

‘Islamic Jew-Hatred': It’s NOT in the Quran

In the Name of God: The Infinitely Merciful and Compassionate Beloved
Pamella Geller has put up bus ads in Washington, D.C. that say:
Islamic Jew-hatred: It’s in the Quran. Two-thirds of all US aid goes to Islamic countries. Stop racism. End all aid to Islamic countries.
Her contention is flat-out wrong.
The Quran is full of positive references to the Children of Israel and Jewish history. Many of the Jewish Prophets, in fact, are mentioned more by name than the Prophet Muhammad himself (peace be upon them all). Here is what the Quran says about the Torah, the Jewish Scripture:
It is He Who sent down to thee (step by step), in truth, the Book, confirming what went before it; and He sent down the Law (of Moses) and the Gospel (of Jesus) before this, as a guide to mankind, and He sent down the criterion (of judgment between right and wrong). (3:3)
It was We who revealed the law (to Moses): therein was guidance and light…And in their footsteps We sent Jesus the son of Mary, confirming the Law that had come before him: We sent him the Gospel: therein was guidance and light, and confirmation of the Law that had come before him: a guidance and an admonition to those who fear God (5:44,46)
Does this sound like “Islamic Jew-Hatred” to you?
Here is but a small bit of what the Quran says about the Jewish Prophets:
Say ye: “We believe in God, and the revelation given to us, and to Abraham, Ishmael, Isaac, Jacob, and the Tribes, and that given to Moses and Jesus, and that given to (all) prophets from their Lord: We make no difference between one and another of them, and to Him have we submitted ourselves. (2:136)
Behold, we have inspired thee [O Prophet] just as we inspired Noah and all the prophets after him – as We inspired Abraham, Ishmael, Isaac, Jacob and their descendants, including Jesus, Job, Jonah, Aaron, and Solomon; and as We vouchsafed unto David a book of divine wisdom (4:163)
And We bestowed upon him [Abraham] Isaac and Jacob, and We guided each of them as We had guided Noah aforetime. And out of his offspring, [We bestowed prophethood upon] David, Solomon, Job, Joseph, Moses and Aaron: for thus do We reward the doers of good. And upon Zachariah, John, Jesus, and Elijah: ever one of them was of the righteous; and [upon] Ishmael, Elisha, Jonah, and Lot: every one of them did We favor above other people (6: 84-86).
Does this sound like “Islamic Jew-Hatred” to you?
Now, indeed, there are seemingly tough verses in the Quran about the children of Israel:
Those of the children of Israel who were bent on denying the truth have [already] been cursed by the tongue of David and of Jesus, the son of Mary; this because they rebelled [against God] and persisted in transgressing the bounds of what is right. (5:78)
There a few points here: first, the verse does not say that “all Jews are cursed.” The verse says that those children of Israel who did wrong were cursed by David and Jesus. And here is the scriptural evidence for this:
Ye serpents, ye generation of vipers, how can ye escape the damnation of hell? Wherefore, behold, I send unto you prophets, and wise men, and scribes: and some of them ye shall kill and crucify; and some of them shall ye scourge in your synagogues, and persecute them from city to city:That upon you may come all the righteous blood shed upon the earth, from the blood of righteous Abel unto the blood of Zacharias son of Barachias, whom ye slew between the temple and the altar. (Matthew 23:33-35)
The wrath of God came upon them, and slew the fattest of them, and smote down the chosen men of Israel. For all this they sinned still, and believed not for his wondrous works.Therefore their days did he consume in vanity, and their years in trouble. (Psalm 78:31-33)
Moreover, there are some verses in the Quran that are oft-quoted by those who claim “Islamic Jew-Hatred” which seem to call Jews “apes” and “pigs and monkeys”:
And well you knew those among you who transgressed in the matter of the Sabbath. We said to them ‘Be ye apes, despised and rejected.’ (2:65)
And ask them about that town which stood by the sea: how its people would profane the Sabbath whenever their fish came to them, breaking the water’s surface, on a day on which they ought to have kept Sabbath – because they would not come to them on other than Sabbath-days!…And then, when they disdainfully persisted in doing what they had been forbidden to do, We said unto them: ‘Be as apes despicable!’ (7:163-166)
Say: ‘Shall I tell you who, in the sight of God, deserves a yet worse retribution than these? They whom God has rejected and whom He has condemned, and whom He has turned into apes and swine because they worshiped the powers of evil: these are yet worse in station and father astray from the right path [than the mockers].” (5:60)

Indeed, some Muslims have claimed that Jews are “pigs and monkeys,” apparently based on these verses. As horrible as their claim is, their use of the Quran is completely incorrect.
As the verses clearly show, the Quran is not saying “Jews are apes and monkeys.” In fact, there is no verse in the Quran – none – that says “Jews are apes and monkeys.” The verses above speak about the Sabbath Breakers: it was they who were turned into apes because they broke the law of the Sabbath. Commentator Muhammad Asad (a Jew who converted to Islam) explains this story:
Under Mosaic Law, they were obliged to refrain from all work – and, therefore, also from fishing – on Sabbath-days, with the result that the fish were more plentiful and would come closer to the shore on those days: and the inhabitants of the town took this as an excuse to break the Sabbath-law.
In fact, according to Asad, the term “be ye apes” may only be metaphorical and not literal:
As for the substance of God’s decree, “Be as apes despicable”, the famous tabii [student of the Prophet’s (pbuh) Companions] Mujahid explains it thus: ‘(Only) their hearts were transformed, that is, they were not (really) transformed into apes: this is but a metaphor (mathal) coined by God with regard to them, similar to the metaphor of ‘the ass carrying books’ (62:5)”…A similar explanation is given by Raghib. It should be borne in mind that the expression “like an ape” is often used in classical Arabic to describe a person who is unable to restrain his gross appetites or passions.
The point is: there is no basis for the claim that “Islamic Jew-Hatred” is in the Quran. In fact, there is no such thing as “Islamic Jew-Hatred.” Islam does not command Muslims to hate anyone, Jewish or otherwise.
Now, are there Muslims who hate Jews? Most definitely. Are there Muslims who cite the Quran as their basis for hating Jews? Most definitely. Are they correct in their interpretation? Most definitely not. Don’t put your filthy words in God’s Holy Mouth.

Read more at http://www.beliefnet.com/columnists/commonwordcommonlord/2014/06/islamic-jew-hatred-its-not-in-the-quran.html#sI7icSHt4VWlKdFW.99

Sunday, October 12, 2014

If Malala were an Ahmadi Muslim?

Published at World Muslim Congress and Redeeming Pakistan
No copy rights - anyone can copy and post anywhere. 

By Mike Ghouse

On October 13, 2014, Dawn News paper Published, "a letter from Dr. Abdus Salam to Malala" at http://www.dawn.com/news/1137319/a-letter-from-dr-abdus-salam-to-malala which is produced below. Thanks for publishing it.

On October 10, 2014, three days before Dawn published, I wrote at   http://worldmuslimcongress.blogspot.com/2014/10/malala-and-dr-abdus-salam-two-nobel.html

 I congratulated Malala for winning the Nobel Prize, and reminded her that she is not the first Pakistani to win the Nobel Prize, Dr. Abdus Salam has also won the prize and a great injustice is done to him by depriving him his place in Pakistan's history. As a Nobel Prize laureate she can consider working on getting him his rightful place in Pakistan, he is celebrated around the world for his research, and it is time Pakistan does it too. As a Muslim I celebrate you and Dr. Abdus Salaam.

A few years ago, when I was searching for Muslim Nobel laureates, I found Dr. Abdus Salam's name, but Pakistan did not list him. Here, I am trying to take pride in listing Muslims who have made it, and this country which was created for Muslims did not honor him properly, not only that they have desecrated his name and title on his headstone.  Is anyone going to do anything about it?

What's wrong?

Justice for Sunni Muslims regardless of injustice to others is not Justice. Quran talks about justice for all - it talks about telling the truth even if it goes against you. There are numerous examples set by Khulfa-e-Rashidun where they punished their own kith and kin for a complaint of injustice lodged by Jews, Christians and others of that time.  What's wrong with the Pakistani people to deny Ahmadiyya their rights (if you are not aware of it, please Google) -what is sad and shameful is the attitudes of Pakistani Americans living here in the United States who want to deprive Ahmadiyya from every possible human right. Should America do to them, what Pakistan does to Ahmadiyya? Do Pakistani American voices have strength?

We may have to ask Pew research to do a survey, if Muslims understand the word Justice means justice for every party or just them. Second part of that survey is how much brainwashing is done to Pakistanis after Bhutto-Zia combine passed the laws declaring Ahmadi's to be non-Muslims? Had it not been for the laws, and had it not been for Maududi, would Pakistanis have developed so much hatred for fellow Pakistanis?
I felt saddened, when Dean Obeidallah (not sure his origin) on facebook produced a picture of Muslim Nobel Prize Laureates that did not include Dr. Abdus Salam.

What I see is deliberate attempt of Pakistani Authorities to not give credit to an Ahmadi Muslim, that brainwashing has done it to Malala and Dean Obeidallah and many a current generation of Pakistani Muslims. I wonder if Malala were an Ahmadi, or a future scientist from Ahmadiyya Muslim Community wins, would Pakistan deny him or her rightful place in their history. If you read about Dr. Salam, despite the treatment, he preferred Pakistan; he was one of the greatest Patriots of Pakistan.

Of course there are many more Muslims, but missing the one whose name continues to be appreciated in the scientific community is not Kosher
Muslim voices will gather strength, when we are just, just to everyone. Until such time, no one will give a listen - all the Islamic nations can join together, but still will not have the power in their voices - we have been partial and unjust, when Muslims do wrong, we grudgingly or shamefully remain silent.

As a Muslim I am speaking up, would you?
Mike Ghouse
A Sunni Muslims
# # #
Now here is that letter from Dawn

Dear Malala,

Despite all that occurred, I'd always lugged around with me a sliver of optimism. They referred to me as Pakistan's 'only' Nobel laureate; I insisted on being called the "first".

I was born in a small town called Santokh Das; arguably not as beautiful as your Swat valley, but it did have much to offer. I grew up in Jhang, a city now tainted by its name's association with dangerous groups.
My father was an education officer working for the Punjab government. I have a feeling your father would've liked him.

Like you, I took a keen interest in my studies. I enjoyed English and Urdu literature, but excelled at mathematics. At a very young age, I scored the highest marks ever recorded then, in my matriculation exam.
My education, however, was never as politically challenging as yours.

I did not have to contend with the Taliban destroying my school, or forbidding boys from receiving education. But whatever barriers they constructed in your way, you bravely broke through them.
In fact, you continue to defy them with every breath you take.

Winning the Nobel Prize has enraged your attackers, as it has annoyed many of your countrymen.
It takes courage to walk through it all, and knowing you, courage is not in short supply.
Not a lot has changed in this country. You were mocked and alienated by your countrymen, when you did nothing wrong. I know something of that.

As a nation, we do not want to be celebrated.

What we wish for is to be pitied.

They were pleased with you as long as you were another local victim. But then, you cast off your victimhood and emerged as a hero, a beacon of hope for young girls around the world. That's where you lost them.
We don't like heroes, Malala.

We like battered souls that we can showcase to the world. We want to humiliate the 'colonialists' and the 'imperialists' for their crimes, real or imagined, against the Muslims of the subcontinent.

We want them to acknowledge the Iqbalian paradise we lost to the plots and schemes of the 'outsiders'. Any mention of the incalculable harm caused by perpetrators within us, does not assist that narrative.
We do not want to acknowledge the bigotry within, of which I know something too.

This is not something I had fully realised the day I received my Nobel Prize. Standing in ceremonial Punjabi garb among a group of men in tuxedos, I was proud to represent my country, though my country was far less thrilled being represented by me.

I was demonized and successfully disenfranchised for my religious beliefs; I was not allowed to offer lectures in certain universities due to threats of violence; my work was belittled by my own people.

I decided that working abroad was better than being treated as foreigner in my own homeland. That only gave further wind to the hurtful theories about me being a 'traitor' to my country.

Now, the mantle passes to you, dearest child.

And with it, I regret to pass onto you the heart-wrenching burden it brings.

You are the new 'traitor'.
You are presented with the dire challenge of bringing peace and pride to a country, that doesn't want your gift.
Like a mother of a particularly rebellious child, you must find a way to love them nonetheless. Eventually, I pray, they will understand.

I had the privilege of being the first to offer this country a Nobel Prize. But now there are two of us.
And, I'm still counting.

Yours truly,
Abdus Salam

# # #
To be a Muslim is to be a peace maker who seeks to mitigate conflicts and nurtures goodwill for peaceful co-existence of humanity. Our work is geared towards building a cohesive society where no human has to live in apprehension or fear of the other. World Muslim congress is a think tank and a forum with the express goal of nurturing pluralistic values embedded in Islam to build cohesive societies.  If we can learn to respect the otherness of others and accept each other's uniqueness, then conflicts fade and solutions emerge. Mike Ghouse is a Muslim Speaker  thinker and a writer.

Denouncing ISIS from every Islamic Point of View

Way back in August, I wrote, if there was a Global Muslim organization that processes the application for Membership of Muslim organizations, the application from ISIS will be rejected outright, like the Drug Cartels would face applying for membership in a Church or a Synagogue associations.Now, I am pleased to present another article by Mohammad Yunus with more technical reasons to reject them.


Mike Ghouse
World Muslim Congress - for Muslims of all hues.
# ##
By Mohammad Yunus
 We the Moderate Muslims and/or mainstream Muslims of the world, who believe in the brotherhood of mankind, promoters of peace, coexistence with people of all faiths, do hereby, call upon you to immediately give up your unholy, unlawful and ill-conceived ambition to found an Islamic caliphate by rampaging through villages, towns and cities, brutally murdering people and forcing the non-Muslims to convert to Islam at gun point. 

We have been watching in absolute horror your cohorts and front-line soldiers occupying lands by forcing their inhabitants to flee to save their lives and waving the flag of Islam with one hand and AK-47 with the other. We are compelled to say that you are committing the most inhuman and diabolic crime of beheading innocent journalists and posting this barbaric act on the Internet to terrorize the world.

Witnessing with agonizing observation of your heinous crimes in the name of Islam, we have now decided to charge you of openly defying Islam’s express prohibition of terrorism, freedom of religion and its emphasis on justice, patience, peace, reconciliation, pluralism and other humanistic trajectories as illustrated below: 

1. Regardless of ground, killing of an innocent person is declared haram or forbidden in three of the Qur’anic verses (6:151, 17:33, 25:68), and as grave a sin as killing entire humanity (5:32).
“Say, Come! I will tell you what your Lord has really forbidden you! Do not associate anything with Him; be good to your parents; and do not kill your children for fear of poverty – We shall provide sustenance for you as well as for them – refrain from committing indecent deeds, whether openly or in secret; and do not kill the life which God has made sacred, save by right. That is what He has enjoined upon you, so that you may understand.”
Surah: Al-An’am (The Cattle) – Chapter: 6 – Verse: 151

2. The Friday Congregation prayer is normally preceded by the recitation of the verse 16:90 which commands justice (‘adl), goodness, generosity and forbids the abominable, the evil, and terrorism.
“God commands justice, kindness and giving their (due to) near relatives, and He forbids all shameful deeds, and injustice and transgression. He admonishes you so that you make take heed!”
Surah: Al-Nahl (Bees) – Chapter: 16 – Verse: 90

3. The Qur’an commands complete neutrality in justice whether it concerns “yourselves, or (your) parents or relatives, or the poor” (4:135) and “even those whom you may hate” (5:8).
“Believers, be steadfast in the cause of God and bear witness with justice. Do not let your enmity for others turn you away from justice. Deal justly; that is nearer to being God-fearing. Fear God. God is aware of all that you do.”
Surah: Al-Ma’ida (The Table) – Chapter: 5 – Verse: 8

4. The Qur’an commands kindness to all mankind regardless of color, race, religion, nationality or any other distinction (4:36).

5. The Qur’an does not furnish any example of the Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him) or any of his followers coercing any single person to embrace Islam during the entire 23 year span of the revelation.

6. The Qur’an testifies that the pagan wives of men who had converted to Islam were allowed to leave their husbands and join the community of pagans without facing any social pressure or coercion to embrace the faith of their husbands (60:11).

7. Through the 12 year span of Meccan period (610-622), when the Muslims were “‘just a few in number, weak and helpless in the land, and were afraid that their enemies might oppress and kidnap them’ (8:26), they were commanded to endure suffering patiently (2:153)

8. The first eight years of the Medinite period (622-629), the Muslims fought against attacking armies (Badr and Uhud battles, Trench war – 624, 625, 627) or entered into peace treaty with their hostile tribes (Treaty of Hudaibiyyah, 628), and with the Jews of Khaybar (629).

9. Two of the Jewish tribes of Medina who had actively conspired with the hypocrites were exiled without any persecution or torture while some of the members of a third Jewish tribe were executed and expelled from Medina, but these actions were of purely political nature and lenient in historical relativism as the prevalent Mosaic Law prescribed massacre of the entire community for high treason they committed.

10. Mecca was integrated (630) without striking a blow. God withheld the hands of the Meccans from the Muslims and the hands of the Muslims from the Meccans (48:24) and God imposed on the Muslims the Word of restraint (taqawa), as they were entitled to it and worthy of it (48:26).

11. The Qur’an is explicit that God alone will judge all humanity including the polytheists, the Sabians and the Magians (22:17) on the Day of Judgment and expressly forbids any compulsion in religion (2:256, 10:99, 50:45, 88:22).
“God will judge between the believers, the Jews, the Sabaeans, the Christians, the Magians and the polytheists on the Day of Judgement. Surely God is witness to everything.”
Surah: Al-Hajj (The Pilgrimage) – Chapter: 22 – Verse: 17

12. The Qur’an incorporates a mercy clause “But whoever (forgives as a gesture of) charity, this is the expiation for him” (5:45) after pronouncing like for like punishment (“a life for a life, an eye for an eye, a nose for a nose, an ear for an ear, a tooth for a tooth, and wounds like for like”).

13. The Qur’an brought the pre-Islamic custom of blood vendetta to an end by introducing a law of compensation for loss of life which has this mercy-cum-forgiveness clause: “But if any from the family (of the deceased) pardon him (one who caused the death), then he should follow this up with something appropriate (as compensation), and execute (the same) in a good gesture. This is a Concession and Mercy from your Lord.”

14. The Qur’an warns those who oppress innocent civilians and wreak terror (yabghyuna) on earth of severe punishment (42:42).
“Blame falls only on those who wrong men and transgress on this earth without justification – such will have a painful punishment.”
Surah: Al-Shura (Mutual Consultation) Chapter: 42 – Verse: 42

15. The Qur’an warns humanity against his restlessness (in pursuit of glory and gain) but approves of those “who believe and do good deeds, and exhort to truth, and exhort to patience” (103:3).
“I swear by the passage of time, that man is surely in a state of loss, except for those who believe and do good deeds and exhort one another to hold fast to the Truth, and who exhort one another to stead-fastness.”
Surah: Al-Asr (The Passage of Time) – Chapter: 103 – Verse: 1 – 3

16. The Qur’an forbids usurping other’s properties; such as by is driving others out of their homes (2:188).
“Do not consume one another’s property by unjust means, nor offer it as a bribe to the authorities, so that you may deliberately and wrongfully devour a part of other people’s wealth.
Surah: Al-Baqara (The Heifer) – Chapter: 2 – Verse: 188

17. The Qur’an grants peace and security at home without being disturbed by any intruder (24:61).

18. The Qur’an espouses rule of law by way of legal hearing and does not admit of any arbitrary punishment (7:159, 7:181).

19. The Qur’an calls for safe asylum of civilians caught in war (9:6).
“If any one of the polytheists seeks asylum with you, grant him asylum so that he may hear the word of God; then convey him to a place of safety. That is because they are a people who have no knowledge.”
Surah: Al-Tawbah (Repentance) – Chapter: 9 – Verse: 6

20. God does not love those who rampage through the land destroying sources of life and human generations (2:205).
“There are some men whose views on the affairs of this life may please you. They even call on God to witness whatever is in their heart, yet they are the most contentious of quarellers. When he turns away, he sets out to spread corruption in the land, destroying crops and cattle. God does not love corruption.”
Surah: Al-Baqara (The Heifer) – Chapter: 2 – Verse: 204-205

21. God does not love those who cause disorder (fassad) on earth (2:205, 28:78).

22. As the revelation was coming to a close after a transitional period of intense struggle and hostility, the Qur’an acknowledges the Christians and Jews as people of faith (5:44-47).
“We revealed the Torah, in which there is a guidance and light. By it the prophets who were obedient to Us judged the Jews, and so did the rabbis and the priests, according to God’s book which had been entrusted to their care; and to which they were witnesses. Have no fear of man. fear Me, and do not sell My revelations far a paltry sum. Those who do not judge by what God has sent down are deniers of truth.”
Surah: Al-Ma’ida (The Table) – Chapter: 5 – Verse: 44
“We caused Jesus, son of Mary to follow in their footsteps, fulfilling what had been revealed before him in the Torah. We gave him the Gospel, which contained guidance and light, fulfulling what was revealed before it in the Torah: a guide and an admonition to the God fearing.”
Surah: Al-Ma’ida (The Table) – Chapter: 5 – Verse: 46

23. In its closing phase, the Qur’an puts all humanity on a level religious plane (5:48, 49:13) by subjecting them all the common command to vie with each other in goodness (5:48) and cultivate moral excellence (taqwa, 49:13) – which it also identifies as the twin divine criteria of Judgment (2:62, 4:124, 5:69, 22:17, 64:9, 65:11).

“To everyone of you We have ordained a law and a way, and had God so willed, He would have made you all a single community, but He did not so will, in order that He might try you by what He has given you. Vie, then, with one another in doing good works; to God you shall all return; then He will make clear to you about what you have been disputing.”
Surah: Al-Ma’ida (The Table) – Chapter: 5 – Verse: 48
“Mankind! We have created you from a male and female, and made you into peoples and tribes so that you might come to know each other. The noblest of you in God’s sight is the one who fears God most. God is all knowing and all aware.”
Surah: Al-Hujurat (The Apartments) – Chapter: 49 – Verse: 13
24. The Qur’an’s expansive spiritual umbrella as a universal din (belief system) for all monotheists negates the notion of a global Islamic state or khilafah uniting only the Muslims of the World as one political body to the exclusion of the others.

25. The Qur’an’s complete silence about the political, civil, financial, or military administration that goes with a state indicates that it left statecraft to evolve with the progress of civilization. Hence, in the context of present day globalized society, the notion of khilafah or a Pan-Islamic state is antithetic to the Qur’anic message.
Now we revert to our charges against you.
Your terrorist activities, barbaric and arbitrary ways, and pan-Islamic political ambitions explicitly or implicitly conflict with each of the above twenty-five listed trajectories of the Qur’an, that among other things, distinguish the Qur’an as by far the most benevolent social discourse in human history. Thus, they are tailored transmute the character of Islam from a religion of peace and enlightenment to a cult of terror and ignorance (jahilliyah) – a grand conspiracy to take Islam back to the pre-Islamic era that is bound to fail as history’s clock cannot be set fourteen centuries backwards. 

Since you claim to be waging a jihad in God’s way, your willful defiance of the Qur’an’s humanistic trajectories renders you a hypocrite of the highest order – perhaps more intense than even those of the Prophet’s era. Therefore, based on the Qur’anic castigation of the hypocrites of its era, you and your ideologues stand liars (9:42, 9:107, 58:18, 63:1), deviants (fasiqun) (9:96, 9:67), intense in kufr and hypocrisy (9:97, 9:101), the comrades of Shaytan (58:19), the most despised among the Prophet’s followers (58:20), divinely cursed (9:68, 33:73) and relegated to the lowest depths of the hellfire (4:145) – God alone knows what fate awaits you in His court.
Furthermore, in our view your campaign of terror, your targeting of the Christians and Yazidis who were living side by side with Muslims for fourteen centuries, your killing of fellow Muslims, beheading of journalists and posting of this barbaric act on the Internet and other crimes including kidnapping, loot and arson constitute a “war against God and the Prophet,” the perpetrators of which were historically ‘slain or crucified or had their hands and feet amputated from opposite sides, or expelled from the land” (5:33). In other words, from the Qur’anic perspective, what you and your allies are doing is a ‘manifestly immoral’ act, as obvious as murder before the eyes of the next of kin or public, a daylight robbery, deliberate ramming of car on little children waiting for school bus, pushing a guy from the roof of a high-rise building for fun – to give some simple examples. 

We, therefore, unanimously declare you as inveterate criminal and most despicable like the Kharijites of early Islam – the first breakaway sect in Islam that justified killing of all non-Muslims as well as the Muslim who opposed them including their own parents and caused “rivers of blood to flow in the first three centuries of Islam.” We most strongly and unreservedly condemn you and warn you that unless you give up terror and seek peace, you are set to be destroyed as you have crossed the limits set by God and His Prophet (58:20) and waged a war against God and His Prophet by perpetrating heinous crimes against humanity (5:33).
All in all, we have given serious thought to the contents of the letter and are responsible for any breach of divine trust (amanah) or intellectual dishonesty in the framing of this letter, which we are impelled to issue as witness to the Qur’anic message (2:143).
May God guide you to His ways and lead you to peace and surrender.
Submitted by: “Morally Conscious and God Fearing Muslims” all over the world.