Entries categorized "Inter-faith"

Newsday on America to Zanzibar

Here is a Newsday article on the exhibit America to Zanzibar: Muslim Cultures Near and Far, at The Children’s Museum of Manhattan, for which I was the lead academic advisor. It's a good chance to shout out my friends from high school.

“Our goal is to have children deal with differences in a healthy, positive way and encourage them to be inquisitive while exploring the world instead of running away from its differences,” Rashid said, an experience not so different from his years growing up in Elmont.

 


My Secret Thoughts of America to Zanzibar at the Children’s Museum of Manhattan — Ummah Wide — Medium

My Secret Thoughts of America to Zanzibar at the Children’s Museum of Manhattan — Ummah Wide — Medium.

For the last few years, I got paid to play with toys. I was able to put a philosophy of Star Trek’s Vulcans into practice, and live as a Jedi. Comics littered my work space, and Dr. Who’s TARDIS traveled with me through space and time. All I was missing was a Buffy or Firefly fix. All of this was possible because I was working on religious literacy and global citizenship.

A Busy Church Month

In January 2016, I was blessed to be invited to share the pulpit at two Collegiate churches in New York City.

The first was Marble Collegiate Church, as part of their annual Trialogue amongst the Abrahamic traditions.

January 10, 2016 Three Faiths, One Family from Marble Collegiate Church on Vimeo.

Hosted by Dr. Michael B. Brown
Rabbi Ayelet Cohen, Rev. Robert Chase and Dr. Hussein Rashid

On Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, I was hosted by Middle Collegiate Church, where I spoke about Islamophobia and #BlackLivesMatter

“Body Politics” :: Jan 17 @middlechurch from Middle Collegiate Church on Vimeo.

“Body Politics”
Jacqui Lewis and Hussein Rashid


An Open Letter to Pope Francis by Dr. Hussein Rashid

An Open Letter to Pope Francis by Dr. Hussein Rashid.

As you speak about the travails of the world, I fear that too many write their own hope and aspirations on to you. Your words are heard as statements about issues, and not calls to action based on deep and broad moral wisdom.
As religious people, we remember that our time is finite and miniscule. The truths that we follow are eternal. The process of justice is ongoing. The performance of mercy does not end.

Tweeting the Qur'an #Quran #ttQuran #Ramadan 2015/1436

Traditionally, Muslims read the Qur'an in its entirety over this time, in a section a day. The Qur'an is split into thirty sections, called juz', and one section is read each night. 

This year is the 7th year I am inviting people to tweet the Qur’an for Ramadan. I will be tweeting @islamoyankee.

Untitled

To see how the call has (not) evolved, here are the six five call outs:

2009 Windsor Star Article

2010 (despite the title, which says 2011)

2011 USA Today Article

2012

2013 Storify (including press stories)

2014 A piece I did on Immanent Frame

 

The Background [from the 2009 post]

This year, I have been thinking it would be fun to tweet the Qur'an for Ramadan. Coincidentally, Shavuot came, and several people I follow on Twitter tweeted the Torah. Since that experience seemed to be successful, it further cemented my belief that this would be a good idea.

I remain grateful to Aziz Poonawala (@azizhp), who helps me refine our guidelines and provide technical feedback every year.

Our guidelines from last year:

  1. Anyone is welcome. You do not have to be Muslim.
  2. The point is to provide greater access to the Qur'an, so please tweet in English, regardless of the language you read in. Multiple language tweets are welcome.
  3. You should tweet verses that appeal to you each night, not the entire juz'. Some of you may wish to do the whole juz', but the idea is that we find comfort in the word of God, and we approach it and understand differently every time we come to it. Each night, there are certain verses that will have more power/resonance. Simply tweet those.
  4. Include chapter and verse numbers using "Arabic" numerals, eg. 1:1, 33:72, etc.
  5. Some verses may be too long for 140 characters. Split the tweet. Summarize. As you will, but make sure you make it clear what you are doing, and include the verse number.
  6. You should feel free to offer commentary on why you chose that verse. If you know some tafsir, please include as well, if relevant.
  7. Tags: please include #ttQuran .
  8. You do not need to commit to reading/Tweeting every night. However, when you do Tweet, please make sure you are on the same juz as everyone else.

If there are are other guidelines you believe should be included, please leave them in comments and I'll move up some to the main post.


Event: McGinley Lecture, April 14 and April 15

It is time for the McGinley Lecture at Fordham. This term, I will be giving a response to the theme of “Poverty: The Curse and The Blessing."

The event will be Tuesday, April 14 at 6PM at the Lincoln Center campus, and repeated on Wednesday, April 15, at 6PM at the Rose Hill campus.

Details on this event can be found here.

Previous topics I have been a respondent to include:

Usury: A Moral Concern for Jews, Christians and Muslims (Video | text of my response)

Life After Death: Hopes and Fears for Jews, Christians and Muslims (Video | text of my response)cf. my talk at the Chautauqua Institution.


Interview on NPR on Riyaaz Qawwali

I was recently interviewed on NPR about Riyaaz Qawwali, a group out of Austin, TX.

Hussein Rashid, a professor of religion at Hofstra University, says that many qawwaliartists working in South Asia today have limited themselves. He believes this American group is bringing the music back to its roots. 

"You know, I think there's been so much concern about what is Islam, and what isn't, politically speaking and artistically speaking," Rashid says, "that there's been a push in modern qawwali to actually sanitize it and make it very sterile — and almost rule-bound — rather than ecstatic and devotional. For me, I think what Riyaaz Qawwali is doing is trying to go back to that very exciting, innovative space that qawwali was."

And so to Rashid, it's totally logical that such a burst of inspiration would come from deep in the heart of Texas. "In fact," he says, "it seems natural that we would get a new flourishing of Muslim devotionals in a place like America, where we do have this freedom of religion."

I previously wrote about the group of OnBeing, in a piece called Qawwalis, Found Sounds, and Benghazi: Locating the Sacred in a New York Church