HOME | ABOUT US | www.MikeGhouse.net Google Profile | C.V. | Interfaith Speaker | Muslim Speaker |Motivational Speaker | Americans Together | Videos | Please note that the blog posts include my own articles plus selected articles critical to India's cohesive functioning. I wish I could have them all, but will have to live with a few. My articles are exclusively published at www.TheGhouseDiary.com


Friday, March 29, 2013

A Muslim Pluralist Celebrates Easter

A MUSLIM CELEBRATES EASTER

The first response from a few Muslims would be "no, no and no!" Muslims cannot celebrate resurrection of Jesus Christ. Jesus did not die, he and his message lives on! 

Whether Jesus was buried and resurrected, or taken up by God, faith in him is shared by more than half of the world inclusive of Muslims and Christians. Whether you believe in Jesus or not, his message of love thy enemy, love thy neighbor and forgive the other will set us free. Can we celebrate that message? 

Perhaps I may be the first Muslim to be baptized. It was an enriching experience to me in particular, feeling the symbolic transformation of the feeling of love towards all of God's creation. Muslims feel the same upon performance of Hajj Pilgrimage; we become child-like with love for all of God's creation; life and matter. The Hindus cherish an identical feeling when they take a dip at the Sangam in River Ganges, particularly during the Kumbh Mela.
To this Muslim, Easter represents resurrection of Jesus through his message, and Easter is a symbolic day to celebrate that message.

Continued - http://www.huffingtonpost.com/mike-ghouse/a-muslim-pluralist-celebrates-easter_b_2976582.html#es_share_ended

 PLEASE SHARE ON FACE BOOK AND TWEET FROM THE HUFFPOST

full story in the link at Huffington post

 Mike Ghouse is a speaker, thinker and a writer on pluralism, politics, peace, Islam,Israel, India, interfaith, and cohesion at work place. He is committed to building aCohesive America and offers pluralistic solutions on issues of the day atwww.TheGhousediary.com. He believes in Standing up for others and has done that throughout his life as an activist. Mike has a presence on national and local TV, Radio and Print Media. He is a frequent guest on Sean Hannity show on Fox TV, and a commentator on national radio networks, he contributes weekly to the Texas Faith Column at Dallas Morning News; fortnightly at Huffington post; and several other periodicals across the world. His personal site www.MikeGhouse.net indexes all his work through many links.

The Desi Factor in U.S.-India Relations

Good piece by David Karl about US India relations. There was another ugly chapter in our relationship. In the 50's when India was in her 2nd or 3rd 5year plan, and wanted to upgrade the Rourekla Steel factory, the United States had turned down the request, saying India did not need the tehcnology...  Russia Jumped in and the relationship remained strong through the 80's

This piece is also posted at http://mikeghouseforindia.blogspot.com/2013/03/the-desi-factor-in-us-india-relations.html

Mike Ghouse


Desi Factor in U.S - India Relations


 

According to a new Gallup survey, more than two-thirds of the U.S. public has a positive impression of India, a score that even edges out Israel’s traditionally-high favorability rating.  This is the latest indicator of how decisively American perceptions about the country have changed.  Not too long ago, India was regarded as the very epitome of what the term “Third World” meant – decrepit, destitute and pitiable.  Yet in a relatively short period of time, the popular view of India has changed in critical ways.

For many decades most Americans were inclined to the views of President Harry S. Truman, who dismissed India at its birth as an independent state as “pretty jammed with poor people and cows wandering around streets, witch doctors and people sitting on hot coals and bathing in the Ganges.”  His Secretary of State, Dean Acheson, had an even more incisive perspective: “by and large [Indians] and their country give me the creeps.”  When Daniel Patrick Moynihan was U.S. ambassador to India from 1973-75, he regularly lamented that Washington was utterly indifferent to the country’s fate; writing in his diary, he confided that it “is American practice to pay but little attention to India.”  In a cable to the State Department, he complained of dismissive attitudes, “a kind of John Birch Society contempt for the views of raggedly ass people in pajamas on the other side of the world.”

Public opinion kept close track with official attitudes in Washington.  Harold Issacs’s classic 1958 survey of U.S. elite opinion, Scratches on Our Minds, revealed that influential Americans held very negative perceptions of the country, associating it with “filth, dirt and disease,” along with debased religious beliefs.  A State Department analysis prepared in the early 1970s found that U.S. public opinion identified India more than any other nation with such attributes as disease, death and illiteracy, and school textbooks throughout this period regularly portrayed it in a most negative light.  This view was again underscored in a 1983 opinion poll, in which Americans ranked India at the bottom of a list of 22 countries on the basis of perceived importance to U.S. vital interests.

So, what accounts for the significant shift in perceptions?  An obvious part of the answer lies in the dramatic turnabout in Indian prospects launched by the 1991 economic reforms.  For all the attention lavished on China these days, Jim O’Neill, the progenitor of the BRICs acronym, contends that India still “has the largest potential for growth among the BRICs countries this decade.”  A recent Citibank report concludes that India will likely be the world’s largest economic power by 2050 and, according to International Monetary Fund data, India supplanted Japan as Asia’s second-largest economy last year.  President Obama routinely points to Bangalore as a threat to America’s competitive advantage while Lawrence H. Summers, his former chief economics adviser, touts the virtues of the Indian development model.  And the jugaad concept, once seen as a sign of backwardness, is now viewed as an innovative approach to business management.

Another prominent piece of the explanation lies in U.S. admiration for India’s durable democratic traditions.   The concept of democratic India had particular appeal to George W. Bush, who engineered a remarkable transformation in bilateral affairs.  Robert D. Blackwill, who served as Bush’s first ambassador to New Delhi, recalls asking Bush as he geared up his presidential campaign in early 1999 about his special interest in India.  Bush immediately responded, “a billion people in a functioning democracy. Isn’t that something? Isn’t that something?”

But a less obvious, though equally important, factor is also at work: The increasing stature of Indians in American society has changed how all Americans think about India.  Consider the following examples:
  • The election of Bobby Jindal and Nikki Haley to the governorships of Louisiana and South Carolina (respectively), states in the heart of the Old Confederacy.
  • The entertaining television ad Intel ran a few years back lauding the rock star status of Ajay Bhatt, the co-inventor of the USB computer connection.
  • The ubiquitous presence of Sanjay Gupta, CNN’s chief medical correspondent. In 2003, he was named as one of the world’s sexiest men by People magazine and a “pop culture icon” by USA Today. And in 2009 he was mentioned as President Obama’s choice as Surgeon General of the United States, the country’s top public health official.
  • The winner and the two runners-up of last year’s national spelling bee were Indian-American children.  It was the fifth consecutive year, and the tenth time in the last 14 years, that an Indian American won.  The top four positions in the 2012 National Geographic Bee were also Indian-American kids.
  • Last summer witnessed a high-profile Desi clash– the successful prosecution on insider trading charges of Rajat Gupta, McKinsey & Company’s former chief executive and an iconic figure in the Indian diaspora, by Preet Bharara, the U.S. attorney responsible for Wall Street.  Bharara was named last year to TIME magazine’s roster of the world’s 100 most influential people and Bloomberg Market’s “50 Most Influential” list.
Large-scale Indian migration to the United States did not begin until the late 1960s and though the community remains relatively small – less than one percent of the overall U.S. population – it is one of the country’s fastest-growing ethnic groups.  But the community’s growing success has given it an influence and impact wholly disproportionate to its size.  As one analyst puts it, “Indians in America are emerging as the new Jews: disproportionately well-educated, well paid, and increasingly well connected politically.”
According to a recent Pew Research Center report, 70 percent of Indian immigrants to the United States have at least a college degree, compared to the national average of 28 percent, and Indians lead all other Asian sub-groups in income and education levels.  This finding echoes another PRC study that Hindu Americans possess the highest socio-economic accomplishments of any U.S. religious community.

Indians have become a driving force on the U.S. business landscape.  According to a new Kauffman Foundation report, Indian immigrants established one-third of Silicon Valley start-ups in 2006-2012, up from about 7 percent in 2005.  Indeed, Indians founded a markedly greater number of engineering and technology firms than did immigrants from other countries, including those from China and the United Kingdom.  And a RAND Corporation study reports that Indian-American entrepreneurs have business income that is substantially higher than the national average and higher than any other immigrant group.

The success and prosperity of the Indian community has had a real impact on U.S. foreign policy.   First, it has helped change public opinion on India in relatively short order, since it is difficult to dismiss or disparage a country that has produced immigrants who have become so rapidly admired in U.S. society.

Second, the growing impact of the Indian American community catalyzed stronger interest about India on Capitol Hill beginning in the mid-1990s, helping in turn to reverse Washington’s traditional disregard of the country – recall, for instance, how the U.S. ambassador’s post in New Delhi was vacant for the Clinton administration’s first year. Pro-India caucuses in the U.S. Congress played an important role in the lifting of U.S. economic sanctions levied against India in the wake of its 1998 nuclear tests, and in securing the ratification of the landmark U.S.-India civil nuclear agreement a decade later. Today, a third of the members of the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives belong to these caucuses.

Third, the Indian-American community has been at the forefront in building critical societal linkages between its native and adoptive countries. Consider, for example, the dynamics at work more than a decade ago. At the same time as Washington was imposing sanctions in response to the 1998 nuclear tests, concerns about the “Y2K” programming glitch led businesses on both sides to set the foundation for today’s strong technology partnership. The significant role played by these societal bonds leads Fareed Zakaria to compare U.S.-India ties to the special relationships the United States has with Great Britain and Israel. And Shashi Tharoor, formerly India’s minister of state for external affairs, has likewise remarked that “in 20 years I expect the Indo-U.S. relationship to resemble the Israel-U.S. relationship, and for many of the same reasons.”

Although they are often overlooked by national policymakers, non-governmental ties fostered by the Indian-American community will be one key in securing the long-term growth of the new bilateral partnership.  As Shivshankar Menon, now Prime Minister Singh’s national security advisor, remarked a few years back, “[I]f anything, the creativity of [American and Indian] entrepreneurs, engineers and scientists has sometimes exceeded that of our political structures.”

This commentary is cross-posted on Monsters Abroad, my blog on U.S. foreign policy and national security.  

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Democracy and Indian Muslims by Tufail Ahmed

URL - http://mikeghouseforindia.blogspot.com/2013/03/democracy-and-indian-muslims-by-tufail.html

The following piece "Democracy and Indian Muslims"  by Tufail Ahmad is reflective, thoughtful and dreamy.


For a Democracy to be alive and functional we have to bitch at the Government,  India is good at it and Pakistan and Bangladesh have done well in that area as well. The most patriotic person is the one who attacks government every day and on everything. We have got to keep the Government guys from becoming pig-headed.

In 1947, India rightly chose to be a secular state and Pakistani leadership erred in making it a religious state. By the way, the only two nations created on the earth based on religion are the ones facing most difficulties;Pakistan and Israel. We can blame the British or any one, but the fact is the problem persists. 
God does not have a religion himself, he was super careful in not mentioning in any holy books  that he was a Muslim, Hindu, Christian or a Native, because he is not divisiveGod simply does not like religious governments, because he does not like any one to mess with his creation in his name. An attack on a Hindu, Muslim or any is an attack on God, who created them, do you think he likes it?  It is still not late to strip religion from the governance in Pakistan and Israel.

He prefers a government where all of his creation is treated with dignity, equality and respect. Individuals will be judged in the society by the society for the violations of others space, sustenance and nurturence, where as God  reserves the right to judge the individuals for their moral compass. 

 God loves Americans for keeping him out of school and public spaces, he doesn't need any more headaches, he washed his hands off us when he implanted a self-governing device called brain, and he wants nothing but good for his creation, and offers the same guidance to all - to treat each other with respect.

Mike Ghouse is committed to build cohesive societies - www.MikeGhouse.net

.............................................


DAILY TIMES 
http://dailytimes.com.p/default.asp?page=2013%5C03%5C16%5Cstory_16-3-2013_pg3_5

Saturday, March 16, 2013

 Democracy and Indian Muslims — Tufail Ahmad

The organising principles of Indian polity and society are the same that define a western country: a multi-party system, individualism, liberty, a free press and rule of law

Hafiz Muhammad Saeed, the self-confessed leader of the banned outfit Lashkar-e-Taiba, may think that Pakistan is the best Islamic nation for the Bollywood star, Shahrukh Khan to move to, but it is India that is arguably the best Muslim country today. Muslims in India enjoy complete political and religious liberty, a free legislative environment to undertake economic and educational initiatives, a vibrant television media and cinema that teach liberal coexistence, and access to a vast number of universities and institutes of modern education. There is absolutely no Muslim country that offers such a vast array of freedoms to its people.

India is able to offer these freedoms to its citizens because it is a successful democracy. It was good for India to lose the 1857 war; if the British had lost, Indians would have continued to be governed by kings and nawabs, and under shari’a courts that existed during the Mughal era. At the time of independence, the British left behind a justice system that was blind to religious and caste inequities in Indian society, an inclusive democracy that guaranteed equal rights and religious and political freedoms for all; English language that opened doorway to enlightenment and scientific education; and a civil service that treated everyone as Indians rather than Muslims, Hindus or Christians. Muslims in India enjoy these freedoms because India is a thriving democracy, unlike Pakistan that chose a discriminatory constitution, barring its own citizens from holding top positions such as the president of Pakistan because they are Hindus or Christians. Over the past half century, hundreds of millions of Dalits and women have found political empowerment and social freedoms in Indian democracy.

Religion cannot be a good model of governance for modern times because it fails to imagine situations in which non-Muslim citizens could be trusted to govern a Muslim country. Conversely, democracies trust their citizens irrespective of their faith. In a democracy like India, any citizen could compete to be the elected ruler. As democracy matures, India has appointed its Muslim citizens to top positions, currently Hamid Ansari as vice president, Salman Khurshid as foreign minister, Justice Altamas Kabir as Chief Justice, and Syed Asif Ibrahim as the chief of the Intelligence Bureau. It is also true that Muslims lag behind in India’s collective life, but this is because they are under the influence of orthodox ulema or because Muslim politicians fail to imagine themselves as leaders of all Indians. A Muslim politician will be the country's prime minister the day Indian Muslims begin to view themselves as leaders of all Indians and not only of Muslims, much like Barack Obama who imagined himself as a leader not only of blacks, but of all Americans.

Effectively, India is a ‘western’ country. In the popular imagination, the west is viewed as a geographic concept, covering mainly the United States, Britain and parts of Europe. However, the ground realities are otherwise. Several countries, notably Australia, New Zealand, Japan and South Korea, are situated in the east, but in terms of their values and politics are firmly part of the west. Conversely, countries such as Russia and some in Latin America are geographically in the west but cannot be called a western country as their citizens do not enjoy the social and political freedoms available to free people in the west. The organising principles of Indian polity and society are the same that define a western country: a multi-party system, individualism, liberty, a free press and rule of law. As in a western country, consensus about governance, politics and society is moderated by media and political parties and is derived from differences rather than similarities of religion and ideology as in Saudi Arabia or North Korea.

Early this year, Shahrukh Khan wrote a long article in which he discussed how “stereotyping and contextualizing” determine the way societies treat us as individuals as we interact with others. Khan narrated that he is loved as a Bollywood star in every country, but is also questioned by officials at US airports over links to terrorists, as his surname is shared by an unknown terrorist. Khan also observed: “There have been occasions when I have been accused of bearing allegiance to our neighbouring nation [Pakistan].” Hafiz Saeed reacted to this statement, suggesting that Khan, and presumably all Indian Muslims, should move to Pakistan. If Khan were to move to Pakistan, think of the images he would witness everyday: the genocide of Shia Muslims; the Taliban bombers shooting girls and namazis; Karachi up in flames and Pakistani businessmen leaving the country; plight of Hindus and Christians and lawlessness everywhere.

Saeed and his cohorts must bear in mind that terrorism that affects Muslims in India originates from Pakistan: the jihad in Kashmir through the 1990s or the attacks by Indian Mujahideen collaborating with their controllers in Pakistan. Like any country, India has its own share of extremist Hindus as well as Islamic and naxalite militants, but the courts are taking care of them.

Indian democracy is a model for all Islamic countries. It is the only country where Muslims have experienced democracy solidly for more than half a century; the other countries where Muslims have had some democratic experience are Indonesia and Turkey but their experiences have been limited to just a few decades. Democracies trust their citizens and are accountable to them. Democracies also bring freedom and economic prosperity for their people. In his book, Development as Freedom, Nobel laureate Amartya Sen demonstrated that famines have occurred only in countries governed under authoritarianism while freedom available to people in democracies has ensured economic welfare of their entire populations. Indian democracy has a large Muslim population, about the same as in Pakistan. As democracy matures and economy prospers, Muslims in India are beginning to benefit from a sea of economic and educational opportunities opening before them.

Islamic and authoritarian countries like Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and North Korea do not trust their own people. Islamic terrorists, jihadists like Hafiz Saeed and other Taliban-like Islamists think of defending their religions and ideologies rather than the interests and welfare of their people. It is due to such thinking that 180 million people of Pakistan are today literally buried under the weight of a failed education system, a rapidly collapsing Pakistani economy that is forcing business leaders to move their money to countries such Sri Lanka, lawlessness that makes common Pakistanis insecure in their own homes and a future that fails to offer hope. The Inter-Services Intelligence, a friend of Saeed that imagines itself as the ideological guardian of the Islamic state of Pakistan, could do a favour by trusting the Pakistani people and letting them decide their own course of life and governance.

The writer is a former BBC Urdu Service journalist, is Director of South Asia Studies Project at the Middle East Media Research Institute, Washington DC.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Muslims welcome Pope Francis

Dallas, Texas, March 13, 2013 – The World Muslim Congress, a think tank, and the Foundation for Pluralism congratulate the new Pope, Pope Francis.


“I hope he heralds a new beginning for building a better world. In behalf of the people of faith or no faith, and my faith Islam, I welcome the Pope and make ourselves available to jump at his call for creating a peace in the world, where no human has to live in fear of the others, let the world be the new kingdom of heaven where we all feel safe and secure with each other. Amen”

There are a few deeply rooted conflicts among the Muslim-Christian, and Jewish-Christian communities that are the root cause of much of the conflict in the world, they have been simmering within the hearts and minds of the Christians, Muslims and Jews, and flare up now and then in difficult expressions.

The world needs a powerful personality to urge Muslims and Christians to accept the otherness of the other without the temptation to correct the other. It needs a strong personality that can absolve Jews from the myths ascribed to them. It needs a pope who is a blessed peacemaker and extends his embrace to the Pagans, Hindus and all others who do not worship or worship God in their own way. We are all children of God and honoring each other is honoring the creator.

He has got to initiate a dialogue on same sex marriage, women priesthood, birth control, intrafaith, and interfaith relations.


The pope is singularly the most important person on the world stage besides the President of the United States who can affect positive or negative outcomes. He can aggravate the conflicts or mitigate them and earn the blessings of Jesus – Blessed are the peacemakers.

We pray that Pope Francis ushers us into a new era of dialogue and respect for each other, Amen.


Mike Ghouse
World Muslim Congress
Foundation for Pluralism

2665 Villa Creek Dr, Suite 206
Dallas, TX 75234
(214) 325-1916 – text or phone
SpeakerMikeGhouse@gmail.com
Mike Ghouse is a speaker, thinker and a writer on pluralism, politics, peace, Islam,Israel, India, interfaith, and cohesion at work place. He is committed to building aCohesive America and offers pluralistic solutions on issues of the day atwww.TheGhousediary.com. He believes in Standing up for others and has done that throughout his life as an activist. Mike has a presence on national and local TV, Radio and Print Media. He is a frequent guest on Sean Hannity show on Fox TV, and a commentator on national radio networks, he contributes weekly to the Texas Faith Column at Dallas Morning News; fortnightly at Huffington post; and several other periodicals across the world. His personal site www.MikeGhouse.net indexes all his work through many links.

Are we connected with our Kids - a good story

ARE WE CONNECTED WITH OUR KIDS?

Many of us have been shocked with the discovery that our kids and us are too far apart, even though we may pretend it otherwise. I have seen too many parents cry it out loud, “I did not know this was going to happen.” 



One of my friends sent his kid to the best of schools in Dallas and always talked about the money he was spending on him - as if the son was a stock market. He ran away and never wanted to see the parents again. I feel the pain of the father, but I also feel the misery his son is enduring. There was no connection between the kids and his parents – everything was money to them.

A few years ago, one of the kids was shot in an accidental fire between rival gangs, the parents were on TV, and it was embarrassing to watch them talk– they were talking about money again! They have done everything for him and listing the monies they have spent on his BMW, Rolex Watches, Armani Suits… and he does this!  Man it looks like their stock market crashed and not their son.

If we are connected well, not perfectly, but relatively well. Meaning we cease to become parents in the sense of advisers – but become good friends in terms of listening to them, then they will share all about them, if we can hold ourselves and listen to them without interrupting. Imagine this; you are excited or hurt about something, and you want your spouse, friend or kids or any human with two years to listen to you, instead if you get advice and interruption, you disconnect with them.

All it takes is UN-interrupted listening.  My life is not perfect either, but my kids talk with me comfortably. My daughter tests me with shocking revelations, it puts my patience on test, but listening to her is part of the affection and caring. She knows it was difficult and when she sees that I value what she had to say and patiently listen, she would realize that and acknowledge it, then I would say, yes, it was difficult and was very tempting to interrupt, but listening to you was far more important than interrupting you. This bonds us.

True friendship with your kids is when you listen to them so intently that they will share everything, it gives them relief, removes the barriers and a strong bond of trust is created. Then neither of you will lose the other.

It’s not too late for any one. You can always begin afresh! Be a cheer leaders to your kids when they turn 18.

HERE  IS AN ESSAY FROM A CHILD

A teacher from Primary School asks her students to write an essay about 
What they would like God to do for them...
At the end of the day while marking the essays, she read one that made her very emotional. Her husband, that had just walked in saw her crying and asked her - What happened?
She answered - Read this. It's one of my student’s essays.

Oh God, tonight I ask you something very special: Make me into a television. I want to take its place. Live like the TV in my house. Have my own special place, and have my family around ME. To be taken seriously when I talk.... I want to be the center of attention and be heard without interruptions or questions. I want to receive the same 
Special care that the TV receives when it is not working. Have the company of my dad when he arrives home from work, even when he is tired.

And I want my mom to want me when she is sad and upset, instead of ignoring me... And... I want my brothers to fight to be with me... I want to feel that family just leaves everything aside, every now and then, just to spend some time with me. And last but not least make it that I can make them all happy and entertain them...

Lord I don't ask you for much... I just want to live like every TV

At that moment the husband said:
- 'My God, poor kid. What horrible parents!

She looked up at him and said:
- 'That essay is our son's!!!

....... Mike Ghouse is a speaker, thinker and a writer on pluralism, politics, peace,Islam, Israel, India, interfaith, and cohesion at work place. He is committed to building a Cohesive America and offers pluralistic solutions on issues of the day atwww.TheGhousediary.com. He believes in Standing up for others and has done that throughout his life as an activist. Mike has a presence on national and local TV, Radio and Print Media. He is a frequent guest on Sean Hannity show on Fox TV, and a commentator on national radio networks, he contributes weekly to the Texas Faith Column at Dallas Morning News; fortnightly at Huffington post; and several other periodicals across the world. His personal site www.MikeGhouse.net indexes all his work through many links.

Texas Faith: The Global South’s influence on religion

 If a Church, Synagogue, Mosque, Temple or any place of worship delivers a sense of home – a feeling that permeates in your heart and soul when you walk out of the place of worship with a feeling of  ‘malice towards none’,  then it earns the larger congregation. Those places of worship that pound ill-will towards others will fade.  

TEXAS FAITH: The Global South’s influence on religion

 “Pentecostal and Charismatic religion flourishes at some of the most fluid and hotly contested boundaries — cultural, religious and economic — in the age of globalization. Broadly categorized as renewalist movements, these religious communities are experiencing their most dramatic growth at the frontier between Christianity and Islam in Nigeria; in the vast factory towns of China’s interior; among members of the rising middle class in Kenya; in the slums that ring the rapidly modernizing urban areas of Central and South America; in Muslim-majority Indonesia and Hindu-majority India. Encompassing more than half a billion adherents and blurring many of the traditional distinctions between Protestantism and Catholicism, renewalism is widely believed to be the fastest-growing religious movement in the world.”

Looking into the future, how do you see this movement affecting religion in general? Are the patterns of the Global South going to keep making their mark on various faiths, not just Christianity? If not, what trends do you see most affecting religion over the next 
decade?


MIKE GHOUSE, President, Foundation for Pluralism, Dallas, and Speaker on interfaith matters, diversity and pluralism


The renewalist movements can be likened to the industrial revolution of the 19th century that dissolved the traditional nationalistic boundaries to reach out to new consumers and new producers. 

The product of revolution was “improved life style” with new conveniences in transportation, communications and the day to day living, where as the product of renewalist movement is charismatic entertainment that is crossing the traditional religious boundaries to form a new enclave.

The post denominational movement is the new face of protestant church, according to Rachel Tabachnick at talk 2 action organization, “Their ideology and relational networks have taken root in the block of 400 million independent charismatics, sometimes referred to as neo-charismatics or neo-Pentecostals. This is an often overlooked mega-block of Christianity that is larger than all Protestant denominations combined, according to world missions statisticians.”

The future of renewalist movement is based on entertainment; whoever can deliver the most mesmerizing sermons will gather up a larger flock. After all who wants to hear boring sermons week after week? Indeed, the trend is similar in Islam, and great oratory is making a comeback to cross the traditional boundaries.

The United States sets the new tone for cultural, religious, entertainment and social trends around the globe, and the underlying theme is  renewed inclusivism; i.e., acceptance of diversity of humankind in work place, church, weddings and schools.

As a pluralist my concern is the growth of Hagees, Jeffress and their likes who sell exclusion in the name of Christ. They act like they want to give birth to the Christ of their making, and ruthlessly clear the path for his speedy arrival compromising on the centrality of his message; love and forgiveness. 

If a Church, Synagogue, Mosque, Temple or any place of worship delivers a sense of home – a feeling that permeates in one’s heart and soul when you walk out of the place of worship with ‘malice towards none’,  then it earns the larger congregation. Those places of worship that pound ill-will towards others will fade.   

I am optimistic about the future. The renewalist movements would be sensitive to the needs of the diverse congregations and build upon positive things about their own movement as opposed to focusing on what others don’t have. The anti-Catholic, anti-Semitic, anti-idolatry or anti-Islam rants will drive the congregants out.  


To read contributions from all the panelists go to:http://religionblog.dallasnews.com/2013/03/texas-faith-the-global-souths-influence-on-religion.html/
.....

Mike Ghouse is a speaker, thinker and a writer onpluralism, politics, peace, Islam, Israel, India, interfaith, and cohesion at work place. He is committed to building aCohesive America and offers pluralistic solutions on issues of the day at www.TheGhousediary.com. He believes inStanding up for others and has done that throughout his life as an activist. Mike has a presence on national and local TV, Radio and Print Media. He is a frequent guest on Sean Hannity show on Fox TV, and a commentator on national radio networks, he contributes weekly to the Texas Faith Column at Dallas Morning News; fortnightly at Huffington post; and several other periodicals across the world. His personal site www.MikeGhouse.net indexes all his work through many links.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Hyderabad Bomb Blasts: What's Next?

As a Muslim, I am tempted to blame bad guys among Muslims, but what good will it do to India? Deepen hatred for the Muslims? If I blame Hindus, what good will it do to India? Will it bring harmony or tear up our nation further apart?
Whether Malala was a Hindu, Christian or a Muslim, or if Amanat was Dalit, Brahman or Sikh, our outrage would have been the same, would it not? I request that the thrill seekers who want to make this a Hindu and Muslim issue to consider the following suggestions carefully.
...
Mike Ghouse is a speaker, thinker and a writer on pluralism, politics, peace, Islam, Israel, India, interfaith, and cohesion at work place. He is committed to building a Cohesive America and offers pluralistic solutions on issues of the day at www.TheGhousediary.com