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Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Bahai, Jews, Sufis & Parsees

Apolgoy to Zoroastrians, Bahai, Sufis and Jews

We hope the harassment of Zoroastrians, Jews, Bahais and Sufis in Iran is completely false, and pray it does not happen. I feel your pain and agony. What the Zoroastrian community has gone thru over centuries in the hands of the ruthless majority

May 24 2006 2:06AM comments rss:

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

to: Zoroastrians, Baha'I, Jewish and Sufi communities
Fr: Mike Ghouse, President, World Muslim Congress.

Hamazor Hama Ashobed - I Care about you and your well being
Allaho Abho - Glorious God
Shalom - Peace to you
Salam - Peace

We hope the harassment of Zoroastrians, Jews, Bahais and Sufis in Iran is completely false, and pray it does not happen.

I feel your pain and agony. What the Zoroastrian community has gone thru over for centuries in hands of the ruthless majority - from a gross expulsion to continuous harassment. It is a very painful thing to endure. Bahaulla, the founder of Baha'I faith was expelled and he spent his last few years of his life in Haifa. The Sufi Muslims are being harassed and are having difficulties in practicing their rituals. The Jewish community has gone thru turmoil since Khomeini's regime. And now Ahmedinejad is shaking every thing up for his own political survival or some such scheming. He is making irrational statements. I hope sanity returns and the good people of Iran prevail over him.

Martin Niemoller's poem keeps coming to my mind. We are in it together, all of us need to join and speak out against injustice. The world is truly split into two groups: the Good and the bad. If you are a bad guy, no matter what religion you follow, you are going to be a bad guy. Evil transcends religion. The good guys are the dominant people but are silent, and it is their silence that encourages evil people to do bad things.

Hope is the one thing that has carried mankind thru the most difficult times. That hope, is messed up time and again. I understand living in constant fear and constant appeasement mode is very difficult and frustrating. The majoritarian attitudes are nothing but shameful. That majority in Iran are Muslims, and it is a shame on them for their arrogance in believing that theirs is the only way, and not giving value to other faiths as their own faith calls for.

I am thankful to God that I a Muslim and am grateful that I am from a religious minority community both in India and the US. This helps me understand and empathize with the suffering and pain of others. All minorities seem to endure similar fear and grief. I do sincerely pray that the few extremists among the majorities ought to experience living like a minority. Some times I wish I could shake up those few tyrannical Muslim regimes and make them learn the examples of the first four governors (Caliphs) of Islam; who were kind, just and administered fair rule with liberty and justice for all.

My apologies to the Zoroastrians, Sufis, Baha'i and Jews, that my co-religionists have caused so much pain, tension and suffering. It is a shame on them. Prophet Muhammad said some thing to this effect: Stand up against injustice if you see one.... towards the end of discourse he emphasizes; the least you can do is speak up. The least we can do is rally support and urge AhmediNijad to be respectful of others and give the minorities full freedom to practice their faith and treat all citizens with justice and fairness. Insha Allah, we are working on it.

Towards this first step, we have incorporated the organization called ' World Muslim Congress' today, May 23, 2006. The World Muslim Congress' advisory board will include a representative from every faith, and I hope this will pave the way for a more pluralistic approach towards people and issues as they come up. My goal is to make it one of the most transparent organizations. It will be open to all. Insha Allah it will be a fully functioning organization from Unity day forward on September 11, 2006.

Please note that there are issues everywhere in the world. Highlighting these issues in no way diminishes the tragedies of others; this is the issue at hand and that is our focus, that is our human limitation to deal with it. We urge you to take up the issue that you can focus on and bring a resolution. We are all volunteers and all of us have an equal opportunity and un-equal potential to serve. A month ago a Muslim Saint's shrine was erased by a City in India, and Kazakhstan wants to confiscate the land that belongs to Hare Krishna Temple. All of these hateful incidents are a cancer in our societies, and we need to cure them for the benefit of all.

Zoroastrians Today - The movie
Date: Friday, June 9th 2006Venue: DCTV87 Lafayette Street, New York, NY 10013 _http://www.dctvny.org/_(https://shmail.safehorizon.org/exchweb/bin/redir.asp?URL=http://www.dctvny.org/)Subways: 4,5,6 Brooklyn Bridge/City HallTime: 7:15pm 9:30pm Cost: Free
Format: The screening will begin at 7:30pm. It will be followed by a brief “question and answer session while you are sipping on French Merlot orChenin Blanc, generously donated by Cobra Beer, and munching on cashew nuts andenjoying samosas.Film: Zoroastrians Today is a personal journey about a filmmaker whodelves into the urgent issues facing her community. She tackles the subjects ofconversion into the faith; dwindling numbers (there are less than 200,000Zoroastrians in the world today); and the treatment of Zoroastrians, as areligious minority, in Iran. The film is shot in Iran, Vancouver, Chicago, Boston,Bombay and New York over the last 4 years, and is an hour long.Features: The film features some very articulate Zoroastrians on both sidesof the issue and extremely rare footage of a conversion ceremony and the Towers of Silence“ the resting place of deceased Zoroastrians.Preview the trailer of Zoroastrians Today at:


www.WorldMuslimCongress.com - in the making

1 comment:

  1. Interesting. I don't know what practical steps you are taking to find participants from the religious communities you welcomed. The international community of the Baha'is can be found at www.bahai.org. I'm sure they can direct your enquiry if you haven't made contact yet.

    As for the situation in Iran, while deplorable it is not unique as Egypt's religious community and government have begun down the same path. As far as Baha'is go, you can review highly authenticated information at en.wikipedia.org by searching for "Persecution of Bahá'ís"