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Thursday, March 25, 2010
Luncheon talks with 12 Arab Imams
Wednesday, March 24, 2010
LUNCHEON WITH 12 IMAMS and heads of religious trusts from seven Middle east nations at my house today. We hope to talk about the Fatwa of Imam Tahirul Qadiri, Muhammad the initiator of interfaith dialogues, his practice of Pluralism, intra faith and interfaith relations leading to Pluralism, which is respecting the o...therness of other and accepting the God given uniqueness of 250 religious traditions.
This is the third one of the series of people I have hosted to talk about Pluralism. Of the twelve two are Egyptian in charge of issuing the Fatwa from Al-Azhar University. These men and women represent some of the key Islamic organizations.
1. Algeria ,Dr. Bachir KARDOUSSI, Professor, Compared Religions, University of Islamic Sciences Emir Abdelkader, Constantine
2. Bahrain ,Sheikh Salah Yusuf Ebrahim Abdulaziz ALJOWDER, Preacher, Qalali Mosque
3. Egypt, Dr. Mohammad Wesam Abbas KHEDR, Senior Research Deputy, Dar Al-Ifta'a Al Misreyyah...
4. Egypt , Mr. Ahmed Mamdouh Ahmed Mohamed SAAD, Department Head, Legal Research, Dar Al-Ifta'a Al Misreyyah
5. Iraq , Mr. Mohammed Arabi Abed ABED, Imam
6. Iraq , Dr. Mahmood Oudah Turki TURKI, City Council
7. Kuwait , Ms. Meara M D BASHA, Director, Islamic Cultural Center
8. Mauritania, Dr. Mohamed El Hafed ENAHOUI, President, Interfaith Dialogue Center
9. Morocco , Mr. Mohamed TABARANI, Professor of Didactics, Islamic Education, Teachers' Training College, Marrakech
10. Oman , Dr. Khalfan Mohamed AL MANDHARI, Professor, Department of Islamic Studies, Sultan Qaboos University
11. Saudi Arabia , Mr. Khalid Abdullah M ALQARNI, Journalist, Almadina newspaper
12. Yemen , Mr. Abdulkarim Ahmed Gadban ALI, Member, Justice and Endowment Committee, Yemen Parliament
The translators and interpreters: Mr. Mustafa Sayid, Mr. Elie Saliba, Mr. Hasanain Alsabea, Interpreter; Mr. Abdelwahab Elabd.
It was on the most productive meeting I have had with people from overseas, we were to close at 4:00, no one wanted to leave and were deeply engaged in the conversation and we had to cut it loose at 5:30 as they had other place to go.
My Meeting Agenda was:
- Prophet Muhammad was the first interfaith dialoguer
- Prophet Muhammad 10 models of peace
- Prophet Muhammad's governance was pluralistic, not Islamic
- Intra faith (Shia, Sunni, Ismaili, Ahmadiyya.. all were invited)
- Interfaith ( all faith were invited)
- The Tahirul Qadri's London Fatwa
The lady from Iraq, was speaking and writing on the board, and I showed her what I have written on our website 8 years ago.. same words," to be a Muslim is to be a conflict mitigator and good will nurturer" it shocked all of us for using the same words.. am not sure if she used my words as she was making notes as I was talking earlier on.
All of them were excited, that we are also talking about Pluralism, which they have been talking about it. They further expanded Pluralism for me indeed. Musch of the conversation revolved around co-existence.
What may surprise you was their answer to my question, why don't you all issue a Fatwa about pluralism, they said that is what Islam was and what is the need to issue one? I agreed with them that the fringe element in every faith makes the whole faith look worse, but if some one erroneously beleives it we have to correct them. Each one of them had similar experience as I did about misquoting Quraan.
I brought to their attention one of the 22 Mischeivous translations of Quraan by Hilali Khan, and my experience at the Parliament when I spoke about understanding the scriptures. The Saudi gentleman is going to work on stopping printing of the transaltion of Quraan. He understood the gravity of that mistranslation and how it frightens Jews, Christians and others. This would be the best outcome of the meeting. I hope he does or I will start a campaing to withdraw that book from all Shelves. You can get an idea about it at: http://quraan-today.blogspot.com/2008/01/unlike-jews-or-christians-17.html
They are going to send invitations for me to speak about Pluralism in Saudi Arabia, Oman, Iraq, Bahrain and Alegeria or will be speaking in their conference on Islam and Plurailsm.
What is new to us is old to them.
OMG, there is so much to write. Ihave to wind this down and drive 14 hours again tomorrow.