Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Day 2 of Ramadan 2011

Please visit the site http://ramadanexclusive.blogspot.com/ to see three years of visiting some 90 Mosques for Iftaar.

Thank you.



Tuesday, August 2, 2011 | Ramadan 2, 1432

PURPOSE: To share diverse cultural experience of Ramadan.

THE PLAN :: Iftaar at a mosque from every denomination including: Ahmadiyya, Bohra, Ismaili, Shia, Sufi, Sunni, Warith Deen Muhammad, Wahabbi and others. You are welcome to join me or experience it yourselves. Cherish the differences.

......................................... ...

Terms: Below the note

Sahri (Pre-dawn meal): Rotisserie Chicken and Bananas
Iftaar (refreshments): Dates, Haleem (Ground meat and lentil) & watermelon
Dinner (on my own): Taco bell’s beef baja chalupa and crunchy taco supreme
Mosque : Makkah Masjid in Garland
Dominant Culture: Gujarati and Sindhi Memons.
During the work week, very few can make it to the Mosque for Iftaar (breaking the fast with refreshments and at times combined with meals). I went in early to the Mosque in Garland, which is predominantly frequented by Memons, a group of Muslims from Gujarat and Sindh areas of India and Pakistan.

A group of about 18 people gathered in the eating area of the mosque and sat down on the floor in a circle. After the grace prayers, every one breaks the fast in unison. Dates are the most common item the world over, indeed, if all the 1.5 billion Muslims were to fast, that’s at least 5 billion dates consumed in one evening. The other items are usually Milk or Yogurt products and a fruit or two with varied items, here in this mosque Haleem (ground lentil and meat) was on the plate. Refreshments are shared to prepare the stomach to receive full meals after the prayers.

Ritual prayers: The same three units of prayers are prayed in congregation throughout the world, however, the rituals vary, and Muslims are as diverse as they can be.

In the standing position, one stands with his or her hands folded over chest, tummy or navel while the Imam (prayer leader) recites the first chapter of the Qur'an in Arabic. At the end of this recitation, in most mosques the entire congregation says “Ameen” out loud in melodious unison. However, in this Mosque, the Ameen was said silently. It reminded me of the Mosque in my town where we followed the same practice, however it has changed there now. In last November I was in Bangalore, the practice was to say Ameen out loud. I felt like Rip Van Winkle.

At the end of the prayers, God’s name is recited in three versions on the fingers or the worry beads for a total of 100 times followed by the common prayers, where the Imam says short verses followed by Ameen by the congregation on each verse. This is not common in all the Mosques where everyone gets up at the end of the prayers. I will chronicle the uniqueness of each group and sub-group as I visit a mosque a day for the Iftaar, Insha Allah.

On a slow day, I will share the pictorial diagrams of various prayer postures.

Mike Ghouse is a speaker, writer and a thinker nurturing the pluralistic values of Islam. More at: http://www.mikeghouse.net/MuslimSpeaker.MikeGhouse.asp

MESSAGE: http://ramadanexclusive.blogspot.com/2011/07/ramadan-message.html


Sahri - Pre-Dawn meal before early morning prayer (fajr).
Iftaar - Sunset Meal as a conclusion of the fast.

Sawm - fasting from sunrise to sunset - No food, no water, no nothing and no intake of any food or water. More critically it is a practice to abstain from ill-will, malice, anger, temptations and human desires. Don't hear, see, speak or act less than goodness.

Rituals - There are several variations in rituals and they vary from place to place. In Bangalore where I am from, the whole family gets up early around 4:00 AM and together cook extensive meals for Sahri /Suhoor, while others choose to cook earlier night and just warm it up and eat in the morning. The Iftaar is done elaborately at mosques, homes or other gatherings where friends from different faiths are invited to break bread and nurture goodwill.

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Email to: SpeakerMikeGhouse@gmail.com

Voice of Moderate Muslims

Voice of Moderate Muslims
Voice of Moderate Muslims

Moderate Islam Speaker

Moderate Islam Speaker
Moderate Islam Speaker

quraan burning

Planned Muslim Response to Qur'an Burning by Pastor Jones on September 11 in Mulberry, Florida

August 19, 2013| Dallas, Texas

Mike Ghouse
Text/Talk: (214) 325-1916

Mirza A Beg
(205) 454-8797



We as Muslims plan to respond to pastor Terry Jones' planned burning of 3000 copies of Quran on September 11, 2013 in positive terms.

Our response - we will reclaim the standard of behavior practiced by the Prophet concerning “scurrilous and hostile criticism of the Qur’an” (Muhammad Asad Translation Note 31, verse 41:34). It was "To overcome evil with good is good, and to resist evil by evil is evil." It is also strongly enjoined in the Qur’an in the same verse 41:34, “Good and evil deeds are not equal. Repel evil with what is better; then you will see that one who was once your enemy has become your dearest friend.”

God willing Muslims will follow the divine guidance and pray for the restoration of Goodwill, and on that day many Muslim organizations will go on a “blood drive” to save lives and serve humanity with kindness.

We invite fellow Americans of all faiths, races, and ethnicities to join us to rededicate the pledge, “One nation under God”, and to build a cohesive America where no American has to live in apprehension, discomfort or fear of fellow Americans. This event is a substitute for our 10th Annual Unity Day Celebration (www.UnitydayUSA.com) held in Dallas, but now it will be at Mulberry, Florida.

Unwittingly Pastor Jones has done us a favor by invigorating us by his decision to burn nearly 3000 copies Quran on September 11, 2013. Obviously he is not satisfied by the notoriety he garnered by burning one Qur'an last year.

As Muslims and citizens we honor the free speech guaranteed in our constitution. We have no intentions to criticize, condemn or oppose Pastor Terry Jones' freedom of expression. Instead, we will be donating blood and praying for goodness to permeate in our society.

We plan to follow Jesus Christ (pbuh), a revered prophet in Islam as well as Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) – that of mitigating the conflicts and nurturing good will for the common good of the society.

We hope, this event and the message will remind Muslims elsewhere in the world as well, that violence is not the way. Muslims, who react violently to senseless provocation, should realize that, violence causes more violence, and besmirches the name of the religion that we hold so dear. We believe that Prophet Muhammad was a mercy to the mankind, and we ought to practice what we believe and preach. We must not insult Islam by the negative reactions of a few.

We can only hope it will bring about a change in the attitude of the followers of Pastor Jones, and in the behavior of those Muslims who reacted violently the last time Pastor sought notoriety – We hope this small step towards a bridge to peaceful coexistence would propel us towards building a cohesive society.

Like most Americans a majority of Muslims quietly go about their own business, but it is time to speak up and take positive action instead of negative reaction. May this message of peace and goodwill reverberate and reach many shores.

Lastly, we appreciate the Citizens of Mulberry, Florida, Honorable Mayor George Hatch, City Commissioners, police and Fire Chiefs for handing this situation very well. This will add a ‘feather of peace’ in the City’s reputation. We hope Mulberry will be a catalyst in showing the way in handling conflict with dignity and peace.

We thank the Media for giving value to the work towards peace rather than conflict.

URL- http://worldmuslimcongress.blogspot.com/2013/08/planned-muslim-response-to-quran_18.html

Thank you.


The people in Dallas are making an effort to understand and clean their own hearts first, when we are free from bias, it would be easy to share that with others. Islam teaches us in so many ways to "respect the otherness of others" and it is time we find simple practical ways of doing it.