B U L L E T I N

Happy New Year!

1. New Year Message - A purposeful life – Huffington post
2. A Note about Sean Hannity, Stuart Varney and Fox News –request
3. Note about Bridgette Gabriel’s comment on Fox News – upon request
4. American Muslims are proud of taking the right step - Link
5. Moderate Muslims Speak out? Link

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Sunday, September 18, 2011

President Obama, you must vote for Palestine now

Since President Truman, none of the American presidents have had the balls to take a stand and do the right thing; facilitate a lasting solution for the conflict between Israel and Palestine. The talk of two states remains a hoax without recognition of Palestine as a nation. It is a necessity for the security of Israel to recognize Palestine; it will tie the loose ends.



Two videos:..


MR. PRESIDENT, YOU MUST VOTE FOR PALESTINE
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6Hb0Y-4lRkM


Sixty three years have been squandered with no signs of genuine security for the Jews; they have been living with an unsettling fear and have been on-the-run for their whole history. Not a week goes by where Anti-Semitism is not countered in Europe, it is there in Latin America and it is there in Asia.
The Jews have not been able to breathe freely. There is a genuine phobia that someday a segment of radical Christians will uproot them as Germany did in the recent past and Spain some five hundred years ago, those were the only nations where the Jews felt home twice in their history but were betrayed both the times.

Shamelessly, anti-Semitism continues to operate under the radar in the United States. Not a month passes here in the United States without the markings of Anti-Semitism. Some one’s house is painted with Swastika, someone yells at them “you people” or opens the fire in the Holocaust Museum or demonstrates hateful placards like “Christ Killers”, there are still a few Christians out there who cannot shake this off from their chests.

Shame on our civilization that one group of people has to live in apprehensions of the other. It is just not the Jews but many a minorities in the world live in fears of the other. Shouldn’t we feel bad about it? Are we evil that someone has to be afraid of us? It has got to change.

Recognition of Palestine will put an end to the phobias and fears. The Jewish anxieties will subside when they realize for the second time in their history (first one was creation of Israel) that they are able to live a life of justice, which is a central tenet of Judaism that they had abandoned for security. It will free their psyche. It will have a domino effect, one by one, the Arab nations will recognize Israel’s right to exist over a few years. It simply means acceptance of Israel and a welcome call to the neighborhood.

The real enemies of Israel are those who are milking monies in the name of Israel. It is business to them, they are the Madoffs whose sincerity to Israel is doubtful but loyalty to cashing in the name of Israel is certain. They are manipulators and constantly coerce our congress and senate and get their way. Heck, they have made it worse for Israel by aggravating the conflicts.

The Judeo-Christian phrase was thrown around 40's to make up for the guilt. A whole industry of opportunists was born from that. The two faced support for Jews by Billy Graham, Richard Nixon, Pat Robertson, John Hagee, Glenn Beck and other chest thumpers had ulterior motives. They wanted to cash in on the name of Israel and perhaps convert them or pre-empt God for the Armageddon.

Jews need sincerity and not duplicity to feel secure. A genuine security is like a child in mother’s lap; safe and free from fears. Jews need to feel there is a home for them, where they can chat with friends in a cafĂ© and carry on conversations without any fear, have zero fears for their school going children or ride the bus without fear. More than that, Jews can live their life again as they wanted to; to be a just people.

All of that is possible once the Palestinians feel justice is finally served to them. Shame on our cvilization, we have not cared for the lives of Palestinians, they are deprived of the very basics of life; a home and a nationality. We have stripped them from their hopes, it will change with this recognition.

President Obama has an opportunity to finalizing the transaction for Israel which was opened by President Truman. Prior to President Truman’s decision to recognize Israel, he was vehemently opposed by many in his administration including the Secretary of State George Marshall, Truman was threatened that his administration will be wrecked, indeed “the wise men” firmly opposed recognition of Israel. Did Truman budge?

President Obama will be equally hounded by Fox News and the right wingers. He has a choice to stand up and act with courage and become a one term president with balls and leave a lasting legacy of bringing genuine security to Israel and hope for the Palestinians.



If President Obama vetoes for Palestinian Statehood, he will do more damage to America’s stature in the community of nations besides keeping Israel in the state of anxiety until another Truman is born.


Let’s recognize Palestine and continue the peace process. It will abate the strife between Jews and Muslims and restore the cordiality that existed prior to the World War I. It is good for Israel, good for Palestine, good for America and good for the Middle East and the World.

Mike Ghouse is committed to building cohesive Societies and offers pluralistic solutions on issues of the day to the media and the public. He is a speaker thinker and a writer on the topics of pluralism, cohesive societies, Politics, Islam, interfaith, India and Peace. Over a thousand articles have been published on the topics and two of his books are poised to be released on Pluralism and Islam. Mike's work is reflected in 4 website's and 27 Blogs indexed at http://www.mikeghouse.net/ and you can find all of his current articles at www.TheGhousediary.com

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Texas Faith - Should we pray for rain?

The creator has designed a perfect ecological system for the planet earth to sustain on its own; however a few anomalies are built-in as a reminder for us to accept our own imperfections. Rain is one of the major components of that system and every so often, the system breaks down resulting in famines.
Dallas Morning News
Texas Faith, September 13, 2011


Should Texans or for that matter, others afflicted by drought pray for rain? If so, how would you pray? And what would you expect? If not, why wouldn’t you pray for rain?

Rain is a major source of life-giving water. It fills the lakes, runs the rivers, grows the food, tends the plants which produce oxygen and facilitates all that we consume for nourishment and survival. Lack of rain brings disasters.

The creator has designed a perfect ecological system for the planet earth to sustain on its own; however a few anomalies are built-in as a reminder for us to accept our own imperfections. Rain is one of the major components of that system and every so often, the system breaks down resulting in famines.

We have not had rain for a long time, what are our choices? When our intellect does not produce alternatives, we turn to the creator; it is our only hope.

Gov. Rick Perry’s proclamation to pray for rain may have its origins when he was a Commissioner for Agriculture. Indeed Jesus had made frequent references to it, in Matthew 13; four parables were mentioned relating to agriculture.

Doesn’t the creator know his operation has gone bonkers and needs fixing? He does, the mother knows what her children want, the employers know what the employees want, yet we have to ask for it. So, we pray!

The Native Americans felt the need to appease the creator and initiated rain dances. The Egyptian prayed for rain so the Nile can flow and they can get their water for sustenance.

Moses declared in Deuteronomy 11:14 " I will give you the rain of your land…" and laid a condition, “to love the Lord your God, and to serve Him with all your heart and with all your soul."

Lord Krishna says, “Beings are nourished by food, food is produced by rain, rain comes from sacrifice, and sacrifice is performed by action” and in chapter 19 of Bhagvad Gita he says “O Arjuna, I control heat, the rain and the drought.”

Indeed, it is a routine in India for the Hindus, Muslims, Sikhs and Jains to gather up and sing songs for rain. Even eminent scientist like C.N.R. Rao has inaugurated festivities to Goddess Chamanudeshwari to bless the State with bountiful rain.

James 5:18, “Then, Elijah prayed again, the sky sent down rain and the earth began to yield its crops”

Martin Lings, a Muslim scholar writes, “In Quraan the ideas of Mercy and water, in particular rain are in a sense inseparable” he compares that to the idea of revelation and the rain, both sent down by all Merciful God and both are spoken of as life giving. He adds that “the divine mercy reaches the uttermost confines of creation.”

In April this year, the Council on American Islamic Relations urged Muslims in Texas mosques to offer special Islamic prayers, called Salatul Istisqa, simply meaning asking God for water. This prayer was offered by Prophet Muhammad during times of drought. Muslims pray 2 units of optional prayers either personally or in congregation, it is in the same format of daily prayers except the supplications for rain.

As a pluralist, I want to assure that this piece is meant to represent all religious traditions even though they are not mentioned. May God bless us with rain now, Amen.

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The weekly column called Texas Faith at Dallas Morning News asks the religiously oriented to write about the issues facing the nation from their faith perspective. I have been blessed to be sharing my take for over a year now. At the morning news, you can read at least ten other takes on the question. http://religionblog.dallasnews.com/archives/2011/09/texas-faith-should-we-pray-for.html

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Mike Ghouse is committed to building a cohesive America and offers pluralistic solutions on issues of the day to the media and the public. He is a speaker thinker and a writer on the topics of pluralism, cohesive societies, Politics, Islam, interfaith, India and Peace. Over a thousand articles have been published on the topics and two of his books are poised to be released on Pluralism and Islam. Mike's work is reflected in 4 website's and 27 Blogs indexed at http://www.mikeghouse.net/ and you can find all of his current articles at www.TheGhousediary.com

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Do Jews, Christians and Muslims better understand each other since 9/11?

TEXAS FAITH: Do Jews, Christians and Muslims better understand each other since 9/11?

Abstract: Jews need sincerity and not duplicity. Native Americans need an apology and there is a good amount of phobia embedded in Hindus about conversions. We believe in Jesus as a Prophet and not as a son of God. Unless we deal with tough issues about our differences, we will continue to fake being nice to each other and brood with ill-will within. There is indeed improved understanding among faiths since 9/11. But there also is deepening suspicion among them. One is spiritually motivated and the other is political. Please note, most of my writings are inclusive of all theist and atheists traditions, we all inhabit the earth and we need to figure how best to co-exist cohesively.

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Since September 11, 2001, many conversations have taken place among Muslims, Jews and Christians. There are official interfaith conversations occurring all over the globe, where participants dig into each other's texts. And numerous personal dialogues have been established over the last decade. Many of us have learned more about the three Abrahamic faiths since September 11, 2001 than perhaps we knew before that day.

But here's this week's question, which is simple in its wording but not necessarily simple to answer: Do followers of the three Abrahamic faiths really understand each other better since 9/11?

Eight Texas Faith Panelists including Mike Ghouse weighs in at: http://religionblog.dallasnews.com/archives/2011/09/texas-faith-do-jews-christians.html

MIKE GHOUSE, President, Foundation for Pluralism, Dallas

There is indeed improved understanding among faiths since 9/11. But there also is deepening suspicion among them. One is spiritually motivated and the other is political.

We were better off when we knew very little about each other. But as we faced the hostage crisis in 1979, the evangelical foray into politics, the Baptist convention on harvesting poor souls and finally 9/11, religion moved on to center stage. It will get better when we know more about each other.

On September 11, 2001, I was on the radio in Dallas attempting to make sense out of the chaos of the day and pave the way for relevant actions. Interfaith-faith prayers, blood donation and fundraising for the men and women in uniform were all in place by evening. The fog was clearing up. Osama bin Laden was the bad guy and Muslim-Americans had nothing to do with his actions, nor did they authorize him to terrorize any one. Indeed, he placed a wedge between Americans that still needs to be undone.

Atheists, Baha'i, Buddhists, Christians, Hindus, Muslims, Jains, Jews, Native Americans, Pagans, Sikhs, Wicca and Zoroastrians along with area city mayors, FBI, police and fire chiefs and community leaders graced the first interfaith event in Frisco. Out of which a new tradition evolved called Unity Day. It continues year after year.

But while we are trying to know more about each other, more needs to be done. Here are a few examples;

* Mosques in Dallas/ Fort Worth area opened their doors right after the 9/11 incident. As Christians walked in, they were naively welcomed by yet-to-be trained volunteers who said, "We believe in Jesus as a Prophet and not as a son of God." However, the volunteers were trained to welcome without conflict the very next week.

Of course, back in the 8th Century, a Syrian bishop had declared that Islam was a false religion. That declaration has remained in the psyche of a few Christians forever.

Pastor Robert Jeffress of the First Baptist Church of Dallas reiterated the statement and added, "Quran is a false book written by a false prophet." He was asked to prove it but failed.

There are several verses in Quraan that are mistranslated for political gains. Steve Blow in Dallas Morning News quoted me, "In the Middle Ages, European leaders commissioned a hostile Quran translation to foster warfare against Muslim invaders. Later, Muslim leaders produced another translation to inflame Muslims against Christians and Jews."

One such difficult passage is "Kill the infidels wherever you find them." Ten such propaganda verses were read to separate the myths from reality. They were not read by Muslim clergy, but by Baptist, Mormon, Protestant, Catholic, Unitarian, Methodist, New Age, Unificationists, Sikhs, Hindu and others at the Quraan Conference

*Shamelessly, anti-Semitism continues to operate under the radar. The anti-circumcision bills in San Francisco and Santa Monica were irksome to some, but frightening to others. Indeed, there are still a few Christians out there who cannot shake off what Fred Phelps was demonstrating with reckless posters such as "Christ Killers."

The Judeo-Christian phrase was thrown around in the 40's to build relationships between Jews and Christians. A whole industry of opportunists was born from it. The support for Jews by Billy Graham, Richard Nixon, Pat Robertson, John Hagee, Glenn Beck and other chest thumpers have ulterior motives. They want to cash in on the name of Israel and perhaps convert them. Jews need sincerity and not duplicity to feel genuinely secure.

*Native Americans need an apology for the destruction of their religion and there is a good amount of phobia embedded in Hindus about conversions. Some of them feel that Governors Nikki Haley and Bobby Jindal made it in politics because they converted to Christianity.

*The spiritual balance in the community needs to be restored through observing and following the Golden Rule, which is treat others as you would like others to treat you. Although we have failed in the past, such as when the city of Plano rejected a permit to build a Hindu temple in the early 80's and Richardson did not permit a Muslim school to open there in the mid-1990s, we still have come a long way. Thank God, those are now history and the public in the metroplex welcomes diversity.

* Interfaith meetings are still social gatherings. Leaders from smaller groups are invited as tokens rather than to genuinely get to know each other. Unless we deal with tough issues about differences, we will continue to fake being nice to each other and brood with ill-will within. There is plenty of room for honesty to grow and mature.

If we can learn to respect the otherness of other people and accept the God-given uniqueness of each one of us, then conflicts fade and solutions emerge. One of these days we will get there. Meanwhile, I am pleased to invite you to the 7th Annual 9/11 Memorial, the Unity Day USA on Sunday September 11 at 5:00 PM at the Unity Church of Dallas on Forest Lane. Details are at www.UnitydayUSA.com
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Quraan Conference program sequence: http://quraanconference.blogspot.com/2010/12/quraan-conference-program-sequence.html

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Mike Ghouse is committed to building a cohesive America and offers pluralistic solutions on issues of the day to the media and the public. He is a speaker thinker and a writer on the topics of pluralism, cohesive societies, Politics, Islam, interfaith, India and Peace. Over a thousand articles have been published on the topics and two of his books are poised to be released on Pluralism and Islam. Mike's work is reflected in 4 website's and 27 Blogs indexed at http://www.mikeghouse.net/ and you can find all of his current articles at www.TheGhousediary.com

Monday, September 5, 2011

9/11 and Dallas Muslims

You would be pleased to know that Muslims have taken initiatives to work towards a cohesive America and I am pleased to invite you to the 7th Annual 9/11 Memorial, the Unity Day USA on Sunday Sep 11 at 5:00 PM at the Unity Church of Dallas on Forest Lane. Details are at www.UnitydayUSA.com. Kindly rsvp to Unitydayusa@gmail.com Thank you

Mike Ghouse, Texas faith panelist
(214) 325-1916


Invitation to 7th Annual 9/11 Memorial
UNITY DAY USA -2011
SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 2011 5:00 PM - 7:30 PM
Unity church of Dallas, www.UnitydayUSA.com
6525 Forest Lane, Dallas, TX 75230


We are pleased to invite you to the 7th Annual Unity Day USA; a purposeful event to bring Americans together. This is the 10th Anniversary of 9/11, from this day forward we hope to effect the change to make. It is an initiative to come together to stand up for the safety, security and cohesiveness of America.

On this Unity Day, we the people of the United States of America of every faith, race, ethnicity, culture and background will gather to express our commitment to co-existence, unity, prosperity and well being of our nation.

Unity Day USA is about re-affirming our faith in the goodness in humanity, and the longing for harmony and co-existence. The traditions include but are not limited to Native American, Atheist, Baha’i, Buddhist, Christian, Earth-traditions, Hindu, Muslim, Jain, Jewish, Sikh, Wicca and Zoroastrians; thus it is an all inclusive event.

It is an experience to feel a sense of unity with fellow Americans that will bring a feeling of coming home to where we drop all of our identities and to be united together as an American family.

As Americans we uphold, protect, defend and celebrate the values enshrined in our constitution. Our faiths reinforce the idea of one nation with liberty and justice for all.