Posts Tagged ‘ muslim ’

Controversy surrounding mosque near Ground Zero

Controversy surrounding mosque near Ground Zero

There is a building two blocks from ground zero which has become a matter of controversy in the news media in recent days. This five story building formerly housed a department store which closed after the damage on September 11th 2001. The Muslim –run real estate company Soho Properties purchased the property in July 2009 for $4.85 million dollars and is planning to develop into a 13- story building costing $ 100 million to be named, “Cordoba House.” It will contain tremendous amount of resources that otherwise would not exist in lower Manhattan; a 500-seat auditorium, swimming pool, art exhibition space, bookstore, restaurant. All these services would form a cultural nexus for a region of New York City that, as it continues to grow, requires the sort of hub that Cordoba House will provide. Due to presence of the mosque on the last floor of this building, it has become a target of attack by Islamophobic individuals which has generated enormous amount of News media coverage.

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This project is a brain child of the American Society for Muslim Advancement and Cordoba Initiative. Cordoba Initiative alone is an Islamic organization that aims to achieve a tipping point in Muslim-West relations within the next decade, steering the world back to the course of mutual recognition, respect and away from heightened tension.

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This proposed project is about promoting integration, tolerance of difference and community cohesion through arts and culture. Cordoba House will provide a place where individuals, regardless of their background, will find a center of learning, art and culture: and most importantly, a center guided by Islamic value in their truest form-compassion, generosity, and respect for all.

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Imam Faisal Abdul Rauf, CEO of Cordoba Initiative and Imam of Masjid al-Farah, a New York city Mosque for 25 years, author of three Islamic books commented that “The closest Mosque to this area is a dozen blocks away and very overcrowded but this site was also chosen for exactly what happened here on 9/11 and what America stands for. Definitely, this is a victory of American Tolerance over hatred.” There are about one million Muslims living in the metro New York area of which 1000-2000 work within a few blocks of this building. They have been praying in the make shift unit since purchase of the building.

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The preliminary plan for the project was unveiled publicly in front of finance committee of the local community board. Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer is among many political and religious leaders who support Cordoba House. He was present where members voted 29 to 1 in favor of the project. He also commented, “These are haters. These are people from the Tea Party who attacked me and others individuals and tried to make this about bigotry and hatred.” Stringer referred to the disparaging comments made by a body of the right wing Tea Party movement, Mark Williams, who has called Cordoba House, “A monument to 9/11 attackers to worship the terrorist’s monkey-god”. Because of this and other racially charged comment about African-Americans, he has been stripped of his membership in the Tea Party Movement.

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This project has support of many Christians, Jews, and Politicians but has also generated passion and anger by the other side. Islamophobia is rampant on the internet. Page after page is full of negative comment on Islam and Muslims. People, who are opposed to this project, forget that more than 200 Muslims also died at ground zero. While most of republican are against this project, democrats including NY Democratic Gubernatorial Candidate Andrew Cuomo and NY Mayor have supported this project.

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Mayor of New York City Michael Bloomberg said the following in recent radio address: If somebody wants to build a religious house of worship, they should do it and we shouldn’t be in the business of picking which religions can and which religion can’t. I think it’s fair to say if somebody was going to try to on that piece of property build a church or a synagogue, nobody would be yelling and screaming. And the fact of the matter is that Muslims have a right to do it too.”

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Juan Cole, a blogger wrote “Forbidding the building of a mosque in New York is inconsistent with the ideals of the Founding Generation of the United States of America who explicitly mentioned Islam among the cases when they spoke of religious freedom.

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These kinds of hysterical reactions have not been uncommon throughout the US. At many places Muslims have curtailed or abandoned their mosque building efforts because of opposition by the local residents. At other places however, they have fought and succeeded. Much of credit for these victories also goes to moderate mainstream Americans who are generally fair minded and have been supportive and friendly.

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A 2006 USA Today/gallop poll found that 44 percent Americans think that Muslims are too extreme in their religious belief, while 22 percent said they would not want a Muslim as a neighbor. There is a lot of misunderstanding about our belief and practices as well as this project and what it represents. Due to misinformation, many people think that Mosque will be built exactly on Ground Zero. While in reality it only occupies one floor of the 13 story building which is devoted to worship to meet the need of the people working in the area. This entire 13- story building is not a Mosque.

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We must point out clearly the differences between Muslim extremism and mainstream Islam. It is important to point out that Muslims themselves are the biggest victim of Muslim extremism as can be seen in civilian death toll everyday in Iraq, Pakistan, and Afghanistan. We also have to do a better job of educating our population about these differences. Promotion of main stream Islam which emphasizes mutual understanding and wants to bridge gap between east and west can be a neutralizing force to extremism.

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Source : http://www.twocircles.net/2010jul27/controversy_surrounding_mosque_near_ground_zero.html

p.s : Hello everybody..Hope you all are doing fine..Take care… 🙂

God created all of us , then who created God??

My blog friend Indian Pundit has an interesting post A Question to All Religious People

He asks “God created all of us , then who created God??”

Interesting question,which I never thought about till this day..Well,this is my answer..

If I say – for the sake of argument – that someone created Allaah, then you would ask me, Who created the creator of the creator? Then, who created the creator of the creator of the creator?! And so on, ad infinitum. 🙂 What do I do then?

I am not able to compare Allah to His creations. So the question can not be answered as such ,as Allah is completely Exalted and far above mortal description; He is not “like” His creation.

My undertsnading of “Who created Allah is based on the below chapter

Translations of the Qur’an, Surah 112: AL-IKHLAS (SINCERITY)

Total Verses: 4 Revealed At: MAKKA

  • 112.001 Say: He is Allah, the One and Only;
  • 112.002 Allah, the Eternal, Absolute;
  • 112.003 He begetteth not, nor is He begotten;
  • 112.004And there is none like unto Him.

Well,to be honest,thatz all I know and I have never thought of such a question till this moment of my life.. 🙂

Please share your thought..You don’t need to be a religious person to answer this question,right?

Thanks for the post IP 🙂

When the disbelievers (those who don’t believe in Allah)come to you and ask you if you believe in God, you would logically reply: “Yes.”

Then they would ask you: “Can your God do anything?”

You would say: “Yes.”

Then they would ask you: “Can your God make something huge?”

You would say: “Of course.”

They would say: “Can your God make something so big that nothing can move it?”

Then you would say: “Yes.”

Then they would say: “You mean that your God could make something so big that nothing could ever move it?”

Again, you say: “Yes.”

Then they say: “So big that even your God can’t move it?”

Now you have a problem. Either you answer: “Yes.”

They will say: “Then that means your God cannot do everything. Because now there is something that your God cannot do. He cannot move the object.”

But if you answer: “No.” They will simply say: “Then this is something that your God cannot do.”

This is a similar problem to the one you have mentioned. This is the idea of a god that is having problems with his own creation. The concept of Allah in Islam is that He is never compared to His creation. He merely says: “Be.” And it is. So, Allah does not operate like a human or anyone or anything within His creation. Within the laws of creation is the rule that nothing moves except that there is a fulcrum, a lever and a force. Allah does not have to use a fulcrum and lever to move anything. One of His attributes is that He is “Al-Qawiyy” (The All Powerful).

So, He is the Power. He does not come under the rules of His creation. He makes the rules. He operates within His own rules; He changes His rules as He pleases, and according to the way He deems fit. That is the understanding of the Muslims. Read more

..of using ‘Cresent moon and Star’ as symbol of Islamic faith.

It annoys me when people say that Cresent and Star is associated with Islamic faith and that it is as holy to muslims,as Cross is to Christians and Ganapathy to Hindus..Please read below and equip yourself with the right information.I felt sad and bad that none of the fellow-muslims in my class could point out the mistake/wrong information ,when Sir made a reference in this regard.I hope soembody will be benefitted from this post.

 The crescent moon and star is an’ internationally-recognized’ symbol of the faith of Islam. The symbol is featured on the flags of several Muslim countries, and is even part of the official emblem for the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies. The Christians have the cross, the Jews have the star of David, and the Muslims have the crescent moon, right?

What is the history behind the crescent moon symbol? What does it symbolize or mean? How and when did it become associated with the faith of Islam? Is it a valid symbol for the faith?

The crescent moon and star symbol actually pre-dates Islam by several thousand years. Information on the origins of the symbol are difficult to ascertain, but most sources agree that these ancient celestial symbols were in use by the peoples of Central Asia and Siberia in their worship of sun, moon, and sky gods. There are also reports that the crescent moon and star were used to represent the Carthaginian goddess Tanit or the Greek goddess Diana.

The city of Byzantium (later known as Constantinople and Istanbul) adopted the crescent moon as its symbol. According to some reports, they chose it in honor of the goddess Diana. Others indicate that it dates back to a battle in which the Romans defeated the Goths on the first day of a lunar month. In any event, the crescent moon was featured on the city’s flag even before the birth of Christ.

The early Muslim community did not really have a symbol. During the time of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), Islamic armies and caravans flew simple solid-colored flags (generally black, green, or white) for identification purposes. In later generations, the Muslim leaders continued to use a simple black, white, or green flag with no markings, writing, or symbolism on it.

It wasn’t until the Ottoman Empire that the crescent moon and star became affiliated with the Muslim world. When the Turks conquered Constantinople (Istanbul) in 1453, they adopted the city’s existing flag and symbol. Legend holds that the founder of the Ottoman Empire, Osman, had a dream in which the crescent moon stretched from one end of the earth to the other. Taking this as a good omen, he chose to keep the crescent and make it the symbol of his dynasty. There is speculation that the five points on the star represent the five pillars of Islam, but this is pure conjecture. The five points were not standard on the Ottoman flags, and as you will see on the following page, it is still not standard on flags used in the Muslim world today.

For hundreds of years, the Ottoman Empire ruled over the Muslim world. After centuries of battle with Christian Europe, it is understandable how the symbols of this empire became linked in people’s minds with the faith of Islam as a whole.

 Based on this history, many Muslims reject using the crescent moon as a symbol of Islam. The faith of Islam has historically had no symbol, and many refuse to accept what is essentially an ancient pagan icon. It is certainly not in uniform use among Muslims.

 

Article copy-pasted from :

http://islam.about.com/od/history/a/crescent_moon.htm

Uniform Civil Code -choosing between devil and deep blue sea.

The last post on Muslim Divorce laws have evoked lot of discussion of Uniform Civil Code..I haven’t done much reading on this,so I am yet to form my own opinion.Enacting UCC is easier said than done,but I have no idea how it is practical in a country of excessive plurality of religions.I think gender-equal and secualr concepts emulated into personal laws will be more acceptable and more fesible in our current state of nation-atleast,it may serve as a first step towards reform.Otherwise,we and our coming generation will die ranting UCC and nothing is going to happen.

While I do my reading,I would like to share an article that echo my current thoughts.

Why I Support The Uniform Civil Code

Author: Tariq Ansari

Publication: Outlook

Date: July 29, 2003

URL: http://www.outlookindia.com/full.asp?fodname=20030729&fname=ucc&sid=1

The Supreme Court has once again set the cat amongst the pigeons on the matter of a Common Civil Code. Gloating and breast beating has commenced on all sides of the politico-social spectrum. As an Indian Muslim I would like very much to be heard….

 

The Supreme Court has once again set the cat amongst the pigeons on the matter of a Common Civil Code. Gloating and breast beating has commenced on all sides of the politico- social spectrum. As an Indian Muslim I would like very much to be heard.

 

Let’s get some ridiculous myths out of the way first:

 

Myth 1: All Muslims are opposed to a Common Civil Code.

 

Clearly, this is not the case. I am one who is not, as are many others.

 

Myth 2: The Muslim Personal Law gives Muslims some great benefits that are being withheld from non-Muslims.

 

Nothing can be further from the truth. The personal law only gives Muslims the right to be governed by Shariah principles in the personal matters of marriage, inheritance, property rights and religious observance. Commercial and criminal law is the same for all Indians.

 

So why do I support a common law for all Indians in civil matters? For four very good reasons.

 

First, there are at least six schools of jurisprudence among Muslims, four among Sunnis and two among Shias. The Indian Muslim Personal Law is a curious amalgam of principles from different schools, but most particularly the Hanafi branch of Sunni legal belief.

 

While most Indian Muslims are from this sect, our so-called Muslim Personal Law does not cover large numbers of Muslims, who prefer their own interpretation of Shariah law. Therefore, this is hardly in conformity with pure Koranic practice, as the more extreme elements among the Muslim clergy would have us believe.

 

Second, I believe the most important demand that Muslims should make in secular India is that we are treated equally. That we have equal rights and opportunities as all other Indians and that the State will afford us the same protection of our rights and property as it would Hindus. I do not believe Muslims can make that demand when at the same time we want to be treated differently in matters of personal law. This is an irreconcilable inconsistency.

 

Third, at least half of all Muslims are badly served by the Muslim Personal Law. Triple talaq, no rights to maintenance (thank you, Rajiv Gandhi!) and subordinate rights of inheritance are all examples of how my Muslim sisters labour under an unfair and, dare I say it, unIslamic set of regulations. I have a daughter and if she should want to marry a Muslim it will be under the Special Marriages Act, thank you very much.

 

And lastly, this ridiculous Muslim Personal Law is a convenient stick for Hindu communalists to beat Muslims with. Giving us the right to be governed by our own personal law gives them the right to claim that we are some kind of privileged minority with a suspect commitment to the Indian Republic. Take away the law and deprive Pravin Togadia of the stick.

 

However, I would also like to raise two very specific and critical qualifications to my support of the Supreme Court mention. We cannot move towards a Common Civil Code without absolute clarity on these matters:

 

One, understand and do something about the fundamental reasons why Indian Muslims cling to their own Personal Law. Deep within the psyche of the Mussalman is a fear of disenfranchisement, of complete loss of identity and marginalisation within Indian society.

 

Two, every time you burn homes in Gujarat, every time you treat Urdu as an alien tongue, every time a Muslim boy loses a job opportunity thanks to discrimination and every time Mr Togadia hints darkly at ‘the enemy within,’ you compound the siege mentality.

 

When everything is taken away, goes the ghetto belief, let us cling tightly to what we are. The Muslim Personal Law, sadly, has become one of the symbols of identity, an identity under threat.

 

A Common Civil Code must imply that ALL citizens are covered under the same laws on civil and commercial matters.

 

Let us dismantle at the same time, special privileges under the Hindu Undivided Family provisions as also any special laws governing the personal affairs of Christians, Parsis, Jains, Buddhists, and Sikhs as well as other groups like the Nairs of Kerala who follow the principles of matrilineal descent.

 

Do away not only with Muslim Personal Law but also other laws on the statute books that grant legal sanctity to unique practices of the diverse communities of India.

 

As an Indian Muslim I wholeheartedly support the idea of a Common Civil Code. It is a fair and equitable Directive Principle of the Constitution of India. Let us, however, understand this matter in its entirety, away from the hysterical jubilation and frantic wailing of communalists on both sides.

 

One people. One law.

 

Yes, for sure!

 

Tariq Ansari is Managing Director, Mid Day Multimedia,

Mumbai

Yes,Uniform Civil Code may require muslims to give away their religious rulings and idendity,but what else can do done in a nation where Personal Law Board members are not ready make any reform even after 60+ years.. (oh,I forgot to give them due credit.They are smart enough to reform Sharia so that men can divorce vis SMS,phone and email..Apart from these sexist reform,I haven’t heard of nay reform that would benefit women who are still at mercy of men )If muslims are bothered about giving away the freedom of religion,they better reform their gender-biased laws,or else may shut up and do as the state enacts Article 44 of Indian Constitution ( Article 44 provides that the State shall endeavor to secure for all citizens a uniform civil code throughout the territory of India.)