Stepping out of My Bubble: An American Muslim’s Journey to Jerusalem

Sep 11

This summer I traveled to Israel and Palestine to be part of the Muslim Leadership Initiative (MLI) organized by a Jerusalem and New York based Jewish educational organization, the Shalom Hartman Institute (SHI). MLI is a groundbreaking program that I felt was going to expand my critical understanding of the complex political, religious, and social factors, which...

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Je Suis Humain: A Plea to Embrace Our Humanity

Jan 17

For the first time since World War II, the Grand Synagogue in Paris did not host its normal Shabbat services on Friday, in the wake of terrorist attacks that started with Charlie Hebdo and ended in a bloody standoff at a Jewish kosher shop in Paris. This hostage taking at a Jewish business is one of many indicators suggesting a rise of anti-Semitism in Europe,...

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Love Thy Neighbor

Jan 05

Question - I have an impression that Islam, like Judaism, is a bit legalistic.  Even though I consider myself a rationalist, I am convinced that Christianity is an emotional response to God and Christ.  Christ’s great teaching is “to love your lord your God with all your heart and all your soul and all your mind and to love your neighbor as...

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Polygamy and Marraige

Nov 09

Question – What is the origin of polygamy in Islam? Was it a “revelation” or economic necessity or a result of Muhammad’s lifestyle? Is it common about Arab tribes? The sacred texts of Islam, Christianity and Judaism do not explicitly prohibit polygamy or polygyny (a man married to more than one woman at a time). Biblical prophets, like Muhammad, practiced...

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Arabic Language

Oct 04

Question – Is it possible to practice Islam without knowing Arabic? People who speak Arabic as their primary language make up fewer than 20% of the Muslim population worldwide. The adjacent map shows, in green, places around the world where Arabic is spoken as the primary language. A person is regarded as an Arab if they meet one of the following three...

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What are Abrahamic traditions? How to compare these traditions?

Sep 26

Judaism, Christianity and Islam claim a common father figure – Abraham. I am attaching file that shows the lineage of Moses, Jesus and Muhammad and how they all trace to a common father – Abraham. Muslims sees Judaism and Christianity as earlier versions of Islam. Muslims view Islam as the final revelation of the Abrahamic traditions. The Islamic...

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