Mozlem to muslim


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Building bridges between Muslims and America

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Mozlem to muslim

  1. 1. Mozlem to Muslim and Brother to Brother Building bridges between Muslims and AmericaNo images in this presentation are of or reflect the ProphetMuhammad, his family or his companions.
  2. 2. Who am I? I am an American I am also a Muslim
  3. 3. Who are you? Also a Muslim. Perhaps in a country where you are angry at America
  4. 4. Maybe you hateAmericans
  5. 5. First a disclaimer. Iam not paid by the Americangovernment to say this.
  6. 6. I want toacknowledgefirst that not everythingAmerica doeson the worldstage is good or right.
  7. 7. What youexperience of Americanforeign policyis one aspect of America.
  8. 8. When youhate America, what does that mean?
  9. 9. Did you know most Americans compared toother culturesare very open minded?
  10. 10. Over ~20,000 Americans convert to Islam every year.
  11. 11. America in spite ofbeing unpopular in the world is the number one destination for people in the world.
  12. 12. Most Americansconsider them selves to be religious, patriotic, charitable. Doesn’t thatsound like you and me?
  13. 13. Americans have valuesthat we believeare the envy of the world like Freedom and Justice?
  14. 14. When you hateAmericans, doyou know that there are 2-8 Million Muslims in America?
  15. 15. Did you know most Americans who have contact withMuslims havea positive view of them?
  16. 16. Did you know America is abig country. It has over 300Million people, that’s largerthan western Europe.
  17. 17. Because America is so big, the average American has lessunderstanding of the rest of the world than do Europeans and other cultures.
  18. 18. After 9/11 American-Muslims have faced many challenges.
  19. 19. The American-Muslim community has triedto open up our homes and mosques, so our neighbors, and co- workers, and community have a better understanding of who we are.
  20. 20. If we are to build bridges ofunderstandingwe need your help.
  21. 21. We can’t say in our mosques, Islam means peace, and when they gohome and turn on the news they see Muslim violence.
  22. 22. An embassy or consulate of any country has a special protected space in all societies.
  23. 23. If you kill an Ambassador or other US representative,you are breaking the sanctity of not only human life but the rules by which we humans live. The Prophet never allowed this.
  24. 24. If you destroyan embassy orconsulate, who pays the bills to rebuild it? It’s you.
  25. 25. As a society wemay not agree with all laws, but if we donot obey laws, the result is anarchy.
  26. 26. Extremists ofall faiths, try totrigger conflict between us and in our communities.Don’t take the bait!
  27. 27. If you are unhappy with my government or yours, settingMcDonalds or KFCor other American icons on fire, will help no one and only hurt everyone.
  28. 28. Uprooting railway lines, and otherinfrastructurewill only harm your community.Who pays? you do.
  29. 29. If you put a bounty on aauthor or film- makers head, or have them killed, whopays the price? We all do.All Muslims get a bad rap.
  30. 30. You have to understandthat in America and Western Europe, “Freedom of Speech” is a deep value that society believes in.
  31. 31. In most cases it is the right of everyone to express themselvesand censorship is viewed in a bad light.
  32. 32. You may sayAmerica doesnot always liveup to its ideal. Sadly we Muslims also have double standards.
  33. 33. The Prophet told us to follow themiddle path i.e. avoidextremism.
  34. 34. And what does theQuran saythat we all follow?
  35. 35. “Fight in the way of Allah against those who fightagainst you, but begin not hostilities. Lo! Allah loveth not aggressors.” Quran (2:190)
  36. 36. “And dispute ye not with thePeople of the Book (Jews andChristians), save in the most courteous manner and say,"We believe in the revelation which has come down to us and in that which came down to you; Our God and your God is one; and it is to Him we bow (in Islam).“ (29:46)
  37. 37. Just as the Quran is a sacred book for Muslims, toAmericans the flagis sacred. Burning it is against the law, and for Americans to see Muslims burning it, is provoking them.
  38. 38. What about Palestine,Kashmir, Iraq, Afghanistan, America’s invasions andoccupations or interferenceand the drone attacks?
  39. 39. I like other Muslims care about thesuffering about our Muslim brothers andsisters through out the world.
  40. 40. There are noeasy answers.But there is a commondenominator, besides America, or Israel and Jews.
  41. 41. There are many lessons that can beobtained from9/11. For thoselike Osama BinLaden, and Al-Qaida it is that you cannotdefeat America militarily.
  42. 42. America is the current world’sonly Super-power. What that means is militarily, economically, media-wise, socially it is by far today the mostpowerful nation on earth.
  43. 43. If you want America to change it’sforeign policy, it has to be done throughpolitical means and from within.
  44. 44. The success ofAmerican-Jews and then eg Indian- Americans in influencing foreign policy is legendary.
  45. 45. Soft power, through politics, mediaand other ways is moreinfluential than hard power.
  46. 46. What this means isMuslim countries and the people who want achange in courseof the US have torethink how they engage with America.
  47. 47. Think about it, all Israeli’s or Indians do not necessarily love America, but you never see them or their leaders denouncing America. They areless emotional and more pragmatic.
  48. 48. Muslims have validgrievances but we are veryemotional and by in largenon-pragmatic.
  49. 49. Let me make a thought provokingstatement for you.
  50. 50. My father when heemigrated tothe UK in thesixties said he learnt “truehumanity” by going there.
  51. 51. “Americans and their West European peers are more just or have a sense ofjustice than pretty much all the Muslim countriescombined.” Why is that?
  52. 52. Muslims have many issues,and we cannotblame it all on America, or the Jews,…
  53. 53. In Islam youcannot try to reach just ends by unjust means.
  54. 54. How about preserving the sanctity of life? In Quran (5:32) we find reference to that if one saves a life he saves allhumanity and if hetakes a life unjustly he has killed all humanity.
  55. 55. After claiming tobe Muslim howcan you take the life of othersthrough suicide bombing etc. Most of thepeople killed are innocent bystanders.
  56. 56. Remember we arenot on the battlefield. If someone puts a bomb near an American post, a church, synagogue, Sunni or Shia mosque, 99.999% of the time innocent human beings are being killed.
  57. 57. These are not acts of martyrs but misguided cowardsand Jihadis. Suicide is forbidden in Islam. Anarchy is forbidden in Islam. Taking the Lives of innocentpeople is forbidden in Islam.
  58. 58. If you are sick, youtry to find the best doctor, not a quack. Why inyour religion/deen would you go to people whose scholarship is questionable andfollow them when it clearly contradicts our faith?
  59. 59. So where dowe go from here?
  60. 60. If as Muslims we are angryabout a book, or film orcartoon about the Prophet(PBUH), thinkhow would he behave?
  61. 61. Interestingly the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) was mocked andblasphemed in his time.
  62. 62. What did he do?
  63. 63. In differentsituations heresponded in different ways.
  64. 64. Sometimeshe ignored it.
  65. 65. Other times,like when they made bad poetry, about him, he laughed it off.
  66. 66. At other times he recruitedthe best poetsto avenge the sayings of others.
  67. 67. But and this is worth noting he never started a war or started attackingothers because of this mockery.
  68. 68. Let’s go back to basics.
  69. 69. The Prophet Muhammad afterreturning from a warsaid “We have come back from the lesser jihad to the greaterjihad.” Meaning jihad al-nafs (jihad against the self) Note: some folks claim this is a weak hadith, but even if it is There is a valuable lesson in it for us.
  70. 70. We must acknowledgeour own faults, and get our own house in order.
  71. 71. This doesn’t meanMuslims have to become passive.
  72. 72. Movies, books,cartoons areall ideas. This is a war of ideas.
  73. 73. You can ventand vent more productively, by getting a betterunderstanding of the situation.
  74. 74. You can help to calm your and your communities emotions, by being a voice of reason.
  75. 75. You can write, blog, speak out,pray, withouta call to arms.
  76. 76. Please share this with your friends• All images are from public domain and copyright of respective owners.• If there are any mistakes (and I am confident there are), they are mine please overlook them. This is one little Muslim’s attempt to bring a voice of reason to a highly ignited world. It is not definitive or the last word. If you have better insights rather than criticizing this presentation, create one of your own. Muslims and America can co-exist, we just have to work our way towards it patiently and with prayers.• Thank you God Bless and JazakAllahkher A K2 Vista Project