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Monday, October 15, 2012

FunAsia brings communities together for Malala

John Hammond

FunAsia brings communities together for Malala

Christians, Hindus, Muslims, Sikhs, Buddhists, Jains and others from USA, Canada, UK, India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal, Sri Lanka and other Diaspora came together to stand up in solidarity with Malala at FunAsia Richardson on Sunday evening at 8:00 PM.

Click picture for enlarged version
Shabnam Modgil opened the event followed by an array of speakers including, Shariq Hamid, Dr. Mona Shah, Anjum Anwar, Rashid Dara, Tina Sharma, Ghulam Jangda, Nadeem Zaman, Dr. Zahid Ayub, Mike Ghouse and John Hammond.
Three young kids Zan (11), Daniel (10) and Shawn (9) also expressed their strong feelings against terrorism and their unconditional support for peace and education for all, especially for girls.

Malala has become a catalyst for a change that Pakistan was looking for decades; her suffering will bring a new beginning, new dawn and a new determination to Pakistan.
It was heartwarming to note that 50 Key Muslim Scholars, in Pakistan, issued a statement condemning the extremism displayed by a loony; the support for Malala is increasing by the day. 

The candle light vigils are not only being observed in Pakistan, but throughout the world, including India, UK, Canada and the United States.

To honor this unity of people from different faiths and nationalities, the speakers at FunAsiA shared their religious greetings from different faiths, all greetings were designed to acknowledge the stranger with a desire to connect and a possible friendship. Whether it is Namaste, Salam, Shalom, and Satsriakal or peace, it is has the same ingredient in it. Attendees were welcome to recite quietly, or in chorus however they preferred. 

Mike shared the following greetings with the crowd:

Baha’i - Allah'u'Abha
Buddhism - Buddha Namo
Christian - Peace to you
Hindu - Namaste
Jain - Jai Jinendra
Jewish- Shalom
Muslim - Salaam
Native American - blessings of mother earth
Sikh- Satsriakal
Wicca - To goodness we bow
Zoroastrian - Hamazor Hama Ashobed.

Mr. Mike Ghouse mentioned that Pakistan has endured extremism, and it reached its peak when a 14 years old girl was threatened not to seek education, and was shot and she is hurt. Prophet Muhammad had said to go the far ends of the earth to educate yourself. This catalytic event is changing the course of history in Pakistan.

The solution does not lie in matching their extremism with our in-tolerance towards them, there is no end to that, what we need to find is a way to have a dialogue with them, they are obviously misguided from some source, we need to go that source with them and remove it from the root, and with their consensus, and not through oppression. It can be done.

FunAsiA, always has and is still working on "Brining the Community Together"
Pictures attached.

FunAsiA management;
Shabnam Modgil, Shariq Hamid, John Hammond.

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