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Thursday, October 9, 2014

Interfaith Weddings - Wedding bells

I'm preparing wedding sermons for a Muslim woman marrying a Jewish man. Sermon will be both in Judaic and Islamic traditions. It's such a joy to officiate the interfaith weddings, it's good to see two entirely different individuals learn to respect the otherness of others and accept each other. Today, in the United States, nearly 42% of weddings are across the faith lines.
I am blessed to have performed Jewish-Christian, Hindu-Christian, Jain-Muslim, Atheist-Muslim weddings and it's a pleasure to see them all do well.

In the long run society would produce tolerant people who would respect the other person's practices.

My friend Ilan Leibowitz asked me what their future offspring or souls will bring to humanity.
There are many good things, to list a few;

1. One of the outcomes would be learning to respecting other faiths
2. Rightfully religion becomes a personal rather than communal or household belief
3. Individual responsibility for one's actions rather than blaming the religion.
4. Minding your own faith, each faith is beautiful
5. A future world with lesser religious conflicts.
5. Write in your own thoughts

Doesn't God love couples who live in harmony?

# 1 - Islam is not a religion of imposition, nor does it advocate forcing others to behave.

# 2 - Quran is a book of guidance to create peaceful societies where each person minds his own faith. No one has a right to punish for one's belief unless someone is adversely affecting his/her space, food and loved ones. God waits till the Day of Judgment to decide about one's faith.

# 3 - Interfaith marriages do not rob any one of anything.

# 4 - Quran treats all humanity as equal -it even inculcates those values in its rituals. It particularly freed women from the oppression of men and usually everything Quran addresses is binary - i.e. if it addresses men to lower the gaze, it advises women to cover their bosom. If it talks about day, it is followed by night; if it is good behavior then the talk is about bad behavior.

It has allowed Muslim men to marry non-Muslim women without even converting. But God has not banned the vice versa, giving room for discretion. However, because a majority of women around the world are dependent on men for livelihood, men have always played it out to keep the children in their religion fold for security reason rather than spiritual reason.

# 5 - No choice, unlike Muslim Majority nations, Jewish Majority Nation or even Hindu Majority Nation where interfaith marriage is prevented, and the couples are even killed, thank God for the United States, if two people want to marry, we have no choice but not to accept it. Islam emphatically teaches no compulsion, but its followers do not follow, America follows it.

# 6- What does God really want? Nothing more than harmony, peace and a well functioning world, after all it is his creation. A Muslim woman marrying a non-Muslim will add to that peace and harmony.

# 7 -  A Muslim friend said, it is not legal for a Muslim woman to marry an Atheist, and here is my common sense response.

If a Muslim woman wants to marry an Atheist man, and remain a Muslim but lives happily, and leads marriage - that is her choice and that is what God wills.

God is always right, there is no doubt about it – his guidance is for our good, he wants the world to live in harmony.  There was a time when women were considered a chattel, Quran removed that non-sense and made man and woman each other’s protectors, guides, confidants and friends on equal footing.  The believing men subscribed to the rules of the social order and were accountable where as non-believers at one time did not care for any rules and marriages went awry. That is not the case today. Atheists today are as responsible as theists and a Muslim woman can be as happy with a Muslim, Jew, and Christian as with an Atheist, Hindu or Pagan, and it is not going against God’s guidance.
Thank you

Mike Ghouse
(214) 325-1916 - text/talk
Interfaith wedding officiant
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. 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.

1 comment:

  1. Truely speaking the Political Situation of Crusade / Jewsade / Combosade going on has nothing to do with religion. Religion is being only Used and abused.
    Americans are good Christians who never wanted American men and money to be drained on the Arab soil.( I used to be the only Muslim in front of the white house along with my christian sisters and brothers asking Bush not to go to war with Iraq in 2003)
    It was Paul Wolfowitch( The Architect of Tyranny and Mayheim in Iraq) the defense secretary with the then President Clinton insisted that America go to war on Iraq. Clinton said no to for his 8 yrs term. God bless Bill Clinton for his intelligence and courage. ( listen to the Diane Rheem Show : interview of Mr Clinton)
    But enter George Bush with a less than average SAT score : got sucked into the war. Bin Laden " sent 11 to kill and get killed , Bin Bush sends 300,000 men to IrAQ TO KILL AND GET KILLED. " wHEN NOT ONE IRAQI CAME TO HURT AMERICA OR AN AMERICAN. NOT ONE .
    with lie of weapon of mass destruction ; we go to destroy the peace of millions and create a humanitarian crisis , like of which has never been seen before. To top it then president of Israel Sharone says weapons are gone to syria. and so the planning was in progress.all along. to create the Humanitarian crisis of the present day Syria. ( Oh please do not tell me Assad cannot be taken out by one attempt with the drones., No no no Syria need to be destroyed first its infra structure has to ruined , just like it happens in Palestine , systematic dysmantling of the infrastructure, and then the assad guy will be taken out. In this human drama that is played out all three are involved, Arabs , Jews and Christian politicians. The Tyranny is going on. Religion of Arabs , Jews and Christian has nothing to do with it , it is the Politician architects of war who create : Bin Ladin, 9/11. Isis and many more so called groups for destraction of the masses.)
    The Iraq of Saddam Hussain never saw the discrimination against a Jewish man or Christian man or a Sunni man or Shia man. Infact his second hand man was Tariq Aziz a Cigar toting happy go lucky Christian man. Now look at the Iraq that our government has created.
    So these wars are going on for hundreds of years and will continue for years. as long as the war mongers have a strong coalition, Americans keep getting to prostate to the war mongers. . It will stop only when the peace makers Coalition gets stronger than the warmongers. Interfaith marraiges are a good initial steps to make peacem and cause Peace makers coalition strong. such marraiges of the political groups who want peace need to be strong for this world to see peace.
    Oh God You are Peace , with you Comes Peace , Help US live in Peace.
    Help US to be the tools to remove Tyranny , Let us not be among the Tyrants.Give our Political Leaders guidance to remove Tyranny from the masses of People living in the camps , Just like You have removed the Tyranny of the Pharoah upon the Children of Israel, Please remove the tyranny on people in Iraq and Syria.