The real title of the book will be released soon. This book is about my journey as a born Muslim to distancing myself from Islam as a Pluralist Youth, to staying out of religion for over half of my life and finding peace and comfort being a Muslim Pluralist a decade ago.
It was a verse from the Bhagvad Gita that turned me around, “finding the truth is one’s own responsibility,” indeed it was, and it inspired me to seek the truth from the myths that surrounded Islam. I was on the Radio for about seven hours on September 11, 2001, getting every community leader from Atheist to Zoroastrian and every one in between to make sense out of the chaos on that day. Interfaith prayers were initiated that week and it was from that day I resumed being a Muslim.
Karen Armstrong’s book on Muhammad helped me understand the Prophet’s role in creating just societies, it was also for the first time, I understood Muhammad as an individual committed to peace and justice in the world, as opposed to a divine distant figure.
Finally, the conference on demystifying the myths about Qur’aan was a capstone to my journey and I have a lot more to go. I believe the un-intended purpose of religion, any religion for that matter is to create a world of harmony amongst us.To be a Muslim is to be a conflict mitigater and a goodwill nurturer.
I have two books schedule to be completed and released soon.
ISLAM BASICS - Everything you always wanted to know about Islam and more. PLURALISM – Everything you wanted to know about Pluralism
God wants his creation to co-exist in harmony and Qur’aan is one of the many holy books of God, giving guidance to live in peace with oneself and what surrounds one; life and matter. The message is similar in other holy books such as Bhagvad Gita, Bible, Torah, Guru Granth Sahib, Bahá'u'lláh's Kitáb-i-Aqdas, Kalpa Sutra, The book of Mormon, Avesta and others including the oral traditions of Native and earth based religions. Qur’aan says no one on the earth is deprived of guidance to be a good human being, if you contribute towards goodness of humanity, justice to everyone then you earn God’s grace and that is a promise in Qur’aan to everyone.
The human weakness manufactures imaginary enemies, so did the European Medieval Kings in the 11th century in the guise of Christianity, paid to deliberately mis-translate the Qur’aan for their obvious gains, they duped the public then, and some of the non-Muslim Islamic Scholars today are doing the same thing, duping the public. A Muslim Scholar also duped Muslims by inserting words like Jews, Christians and others in a hateful way in the translations and interpretations, whereas is it not in the Arabic Text of Qur’aan. This was done with obvious political gains on by both parties.
The book also addresses how a handful of Pastors, Imams, Rabbis, Pundits have crossed the line of integrity to keep their jobs or keep the flow of funds to them while a majority of them stick to the honesty and integrity they preach to others.
God has not signed a deal with any one behind your or my back; all the claims of exclusive truths are divisive and born out of insecurity.
Religion has been “used” “abused” and “misused” to someone’s advantage, as Citizens of the world, together with Atheists and believers of all expressions, are we going to let that happen? No, we will not. We can pull ourselves together and not fall for the tempters who have a gain in dividing the world
I hope to finish the Book on Islam by Christmas and seeking a publisher to print and get is released as early as I can. My friend Sean Hannity on Fox is expected to promote the book on his show.
In this book, I have attempted to answer every question about Islam, Qur’aan and Muslims I have encountered from my talks in Churches, Temples, Synagogues, groups, Parliaments of Religions, Workshops, and appearances on Fox TV, NPR and several Radio talk shows, discussion groups – and over 1000 articles published on the two subjects in news papers, magazines and websites around the world. The answers are straight forward, non-technical and easy to grasp – all to build a cohesive society in America and elsewhere in the world.
The Book on Pluralism is about my Journey into Pluralism and you will read concept of co-existence taken to its zenith, and how the interfaith movement is not ready to explore the new frontiers or even unveil the layers of dust gathered over basic pluralism found in all holy books. If we can learn to respect the otherness of other and accept the God given uniqueness of each one of the 7 billion of us, then conflicts fade and solutions emerge.
Thanks to every one for making me who I am.
Mike Ghouse runs the Foundation for Pluralism championing the idea of co-existence through respecting and accepting the otherness of other and has dedicated his life to nurturing the pluralistic ideals embedded in Islam through the World Muslim Congress.
Mike is available to speak on Pluralism, Islam, Civil Societies, Peace & Justice Saturday, December 04, 2010at your school, work place, seminars or place of worship. He is a regular commentator on the TV, Radio and Print media offering pluralistic solutions to the issues of the day. He is a speaker, thinker, writer and a peace activist.