Tag Archives: Craig Considine
For those who know me and the kind of work that I do, you will know by now of my mentor and intellectual guide Professor Akbar Ahmed. Here is a nice biography of Professor Ahmed, who the renowned American historian Professor Stanley Wolpert called “the greatest scholar of Islam in America and the world… nobody else stands so high… he is the Dara Shikoh of modern Islamic leaders” (Pakistan Link, 30 December issue, 2011). Source: Public Intelligence Blog
- Let me know if you’ve found knowledge (craigconsidinetcd.wordpress.com)
- Watch a calm and authoritative voice outline the basic principles of Islam (craigconsidinetcd.wordpress.com)
- Overcoming fear after the Boston bombings (craigconsidinetcd.wordpress.com)
- Bridging the gap in Muslim-Western relations (craigconsidinetcd.wordpress.com)
Interfaith activist and contributor to Huffington Post, Craig Considine, sheds light on some of the Muslim Americans who took part in protecting Americas as patriotic citizens and lovers of this nation: Honoring Muslim American Veterans on Memorial Day.
In the piece Considine mentions more than three Muslims by name and goes back as far as George Washington time to cite historical evidence of Muslims assisting the American Revolution, refering to all as “great soldiers”.
Considine’s article is exactly the type of accurate rhetoric that should be shared and circulated, by non-Muslims and Muslims alike, in this political atmosphere and in light of horrible crimes being committed and falsely attributed to Islamic teachings. Using the facts of history may be the best way to highlight the devotion and gratitude that American Muslims have toward the US and emphasis the values that America was built upon.
Tags: American Revolution, Craig Considine, Examiner, Founding Fathers, George Washington, Huffington Post, Huffington Post Religion, Islam, Islam in the United States, Islamic teachings, Memorial Day, Muslim, Muslim Americans, Patriotism, Sakina Al-Amin, United States
The Guardian Witness has a new assignment called Public Art.
Whether it’s a traditional statue or graffiti on the wall of an underpass – public art is all around us. But is it always good? Public art can be controversial, the latest proposed occupant of the Fourth Plinth in London’s Trafalgar Square is a recent example. Please share the best and worst public art – whether it’s as famous as Mount Rushmore, or something only known about in your local area.
I posted some of the pictures I’ve taken over the years in my travels.
See the pictures at Guardian Witness
Tags: Art, Craig Considine, Guardian, Guardian Witness, Inspiration, John Lennon Wall, Love Revolution, Photographs, Photography, Pictures, Prague, Public art, Published art, Published photographs, Street art
I visited the Hagia Sophia at the end of 2011. It is the most magnificent building I have ever seen. A truly inspiring and breathtaking experience.
Tags: Architecture, Arts and Entertainment, Byzantine Empire, Craig Considine, Enlightenment, Greek Philosophy, Hagia Sophia, Holy Wisdom, Istanbul, Light, Photograph, Photography, Picture, Plato, Turkey
The recent events in Boston remind me of a conversation I filmed between my mentor Professor Akbar Ahmed and Professor Noam Chomsky on fear and American identity. In the aftermath of the Marathon bombings, we have already seen instances where fear takes over the hearts and minds of Bostonians and Americans. On the Huffington Post Religion, I reflect on these issues through my own personal experiences with different Muslim communities in Boston. Full article
Tags: Akbar Ahmed, American Islamic Congress, Barry Hoffman, Boston, Boston Marathon, Boston Marathon bombings, Boston mosques, Bostonian, Craig Considine, Huffington Post Religion, Islam in Boston, Islamic Center of Wayland, Marathon, Massachusetts, Muslims in Boston, Noam Chomsky, Pakistanis in Boston, Suhaib Webb, United States
I took this picture in the summer of 2011 at “The Rock” in Dover, Massachusetts. “The Rock” is one of my favorite getaways, a serene place I often go to contemplate the world around me. That’s me in the picture. I placed my camera on the timer to capture the glorious sunset. I’ve included Rumi’s poetry to make you think about where we belong to and where we might return.
The life of Saint Patrick, the humble man from Britain who escaped Roman slavery and brought Christianity to Ireland in the fifth century, is celebrated annually on March 17. Despite Saint Patrick’s successful Christian missionary work and his designation as the primary patron saint of Ireland, the day we commemorate his life has become associated with wearing outrageous clothing, drinking pints of Guinness, and being excessively inebriated. Without taking away the joy and camaraderie that many people feel when they celebrate Saint Patrick’s Day, we should also remember Patrick’s admirable character by following his example and adhering to his moral teachings.
Tags: Catholic Church, Catholic Saints, Christian Saints, Christianity, Confessions, Craig Considine, Holiday, Huffington Post, Ireland, Prayer and Meditation, Religion News, Saint Patrick, Saint Patrick's Day, St. Patrick's Day
By now you may have read about the recent article in which I compared the Prophet Muhammad and George Washington through the Holy Quran and Rules of Civility respectively. I have been attacked by many people for making the comparison, but here is a kind remark which was left on the comments section of the Huffington Post.
I have started putting my research into video format on You Tube. These passages from Washington, Adams, Franklin and Jefferson have been taken from my Huffington Post article. I hope this message of peace and tolerance reaches more people around the world.
Tags: Benjamin Franklin, Craig Considine, Founding Fathers, Freedom of religion, George Washington, Islam, Islam and the Founding Fathers, John Adams, Muhammad, Muslims, Pluralism, Religion, Thomas Jefferson, Tolerance
Whoever sent this envelope misspelled my name. It is Considine, not Considerine. Go figure. Note the top-left hand corner says “‘Liberty’ is not found in Islam.” Sent in response to my latest article on the connection between the Prophet Muhammad and George Washington in the Huffington Post.
Tags: Considine, Craig Considine, Founding Fathers, George Washington, Hate mail, Huffington Post, Islam, Islamophobia, Jihad Watch, Muhammad, Muslim, Prophet Muhammad, Religion, Robert Spencer, United States
The response to my latest article was one of general disgust and outrage.
One commentator on the website of Fox Nation, which also published the article, said that he “would beat this Craig guy until the police locked me up for a long time.” Another commentator on Fox Nation said that I must have “found some hallucinating mushrooms in the back of the cave of hell.”
One traveling agent wrote an article for the Washington Times in which he suggested that I was something like an “alien.” Commentators on the Huffington Post said, among many things, that I was guilty of treason and that I should be stripped of my American citizenship for placing Muhammad and Washington on the same pedestal.
The anti-Islam blogger, Pamela Geller, said that the article was “to vomit for” and that I was basically an “asshat of the highest degree.” In the comment section of her post, Geller’s fans added that I was “disgusting” and a “white apologist for Islam.” Another of Geller’s fans even said that my “ignorance” was “probably costing lives.”
The blogger, Robert Spencer, who is an ally of Geller’s, also posted the article on his blog. His fans said that I was “dangerous” and “no mere ingenue in the realm of DhimmIslamopologist spin.” One of Spencer’s fans even stated: “Craig Considine is evil.”
I should add that there were definitely positive responses amidst this firestorm. The article definitely caused a stink in the blogosphere. It hit a nerve, possibly resulting in many aneurysms.
My next article will explore the relationship between Washington and Islam.
The teaching season here at Trinity College Dublin has come to an end. I’m flying back home to Needham tomorrow, so I wanted to take some time to reflect on life since I arrived back to Dublin in September.
For the past 12 weeks, I’ve taught five tutorials per week for the Researching Society course. I’ve recently received my evaluation and had nearly perfect scores. I’m thankful that I was able to create a learning atmosphere where students could enjoy their time and learn a thing or two about creating a research project.
Since September, I’ve had a bunch of publications regarding my documentary, Journey into America, and my new One Film 9/11 interfaith initiative. I’m happy to have finally cracked the Huffington Post. I’m most proud of the publication in Pakistan’s The Frontier Post, which is published in the tribal areas, or where the U.S. government is currently engaged in a controversial drone war.
Over the last few weeks, I’ve had the great opportunity of sharing Journey into America and One Film 9/11 at the U.S. Embassy in London and at the School of Oriental and African Studies, which is also in London. We received incredible feedback and met tons of people who were really impressed with both of our projects. People of all backgrounds are literally lining up to help support our interfaith cause.
In November, I was invited by the U.S. Embassy in Dublin to participate in a discussion on U.S. foreign policy. The discussion happened right before the Presidential election, so I said a thing or two about the differences – or lack thereof – between President Obama and Mitt Romney.
My beautiful Melony and I had several excursions. Our first was a hike through Bray and Greystones, which are two beautiful coastal villages near Dublin. Our second trip was epic. We travelled to the great city of Rome. I was able to see the Vatican for the first time. We hope to live in Rome someday.
Since September, I’ve also been conducting interviews in the field for my doctoral thesis. I’ve met some really interesting people over this time. Some of these people include an immigrant from Balochistan who is involved with migrants rights in Dublin and an Irish born Pakistan who has devoted his life to the Sufi spiritual path. Not only have these people enriched my study, but they’ve also enriched my own spirituality.
I’m sure many more memorable things have happened since September. In essence, all I need to say is that I’ve been blessed; blessed with the company of an amazing woman in Melony; an amazing intellectual mentor in Professor Ahmed; an amazing group of friends that have made me a better man; and, most importantly, good health and happiness.
It’s now time to head back to my other blessing – my family in Needham.
Ambassador Akbar Ahmed, my intellectual mentor and role model, has been described by the BBC as ‘the world’s leading authority on contemporary Islam’. At the U.S. Embassy in London a few weeks ago, he was described by Minister Barbara Stephenson, the former U.S. Ambassador to Panama, as ‘one of the greatest scholars of Islam in the world today’. This is a picture of the two of us presenting our documentary, Journey into America, and holding a panel discussion at the School of Oriental and African Studies in London. Credit for the picture goes to Ambassador Ahmed’s chief of staff, Harrison Akins.
As many of you may have read in a recent post, Journey into America and the One Film 9/11 interfaith initiative were both warmly received at the U.S. Embassy in London. People of all walks of life approached me after the screening/discussion and shared with me their thoughts as well as how inspired they were with its messages. Some of the warmest remarks came from Ambassador Stephenson, who said that Journey into America proves that ‘where there is greater understanding there is not only tolerance but – even more important – there is hope’.
I’m back in Dublin now and catching up with the contacts that I made in London. Several media outlets are interested in working with me to both screen Journey into America as well as promote One Film 9/11. I’m also writing an article for The Nation (Pakistan) on the U.S. Embassy event; I’ll be publishing it probably in the next week. My time here in Dublin is short-lived as we have to jump back on a quick flight to London on December 12th for a Journey into America screening at SOAS. I’ll be sitting on the panel and taking questions from members of the audience. I hope to see you there if you’re in London.
Thanks for tuning in. Please let me know if you have any questions or comments about either Journey into America or the One Film 9/11 interfaith initiative.
I’m about to head out the door to Portman Square for a breakfast meeting with Ambassador Ahmed. Before I do so I want to share with you a few highlights of the trip so far. I’ll post something with more details in the near future.
The Journey into America screening at the U.S. Embassy went very well. I spoke to a distinguished audience about my relationship with Ambassador Ahmed and was even mobbed afterwards by folks of all sorts of backgrounds who are interested in promoting One Film 9/11. I received about 20 business cards; I also ran out of my own!
In the House of Lords, Ambassador Ahmed’s speech on the tribal areas of Pakistan was both interesting and highly informative. Members of the audience included Knights, Lords, Imams and top-level journalists. I was able to rub shoulders with them all. My favourite moment was with Lord/Sir Noon, who spoke very highly of Journey into America and even requested that I send him 10 copies so that he can distribute the message to his distinguished circle of contacts.
Walking through Westminster Palace was also a major highlight. Parts of the building data back to the times of William the Conqueror’s son, which makes the structure something like 1,000 years old. I even sat in the main Parliament chamber where MPs were discussing the Leveson Inquiry.
The breakfast with Ambassador Ahmed is the last major event of this trip. I fly back tomorrow evening, so that leaves me the rest of today to experience London. I think I’ll walk down Oxford Street and maybe head to Camden for dinner and drinks this evening.
- Personal: A quick and fairly significant trip to London (craigconsidinetcd.wordpress.com)
Here’s a quick glimpse into a pretty exciting trip over the next several days:
On Wednesday morning, I have to teach a tutorial on naturally occurring data. The tutorial will be packed because I’ve asked the students from the Thursday and Friday tutorials to attend the Wednesday session.
I’m heading on a 14:10 flight to London. I will arrive at Heathrow airport at 15:30, which leaves me roughly 90 minutes to make my way to the U.S. Embassy London, where Journey into America is screening from 17:00-20:00pm.
I think Dr Ahmed is asking me to say a few words at the event about the One Film 9/11 interfaith initiative. A few of us (the students who traveled with him during ‘Journey into America’) might be interviewed by a couple of media outlets after the event. That should be pretty fun if it happens.
On Thursday evening, Dr Ahmed is giving a talk in the House of Lords on the tribal areas of Pakistan and the drone war. He has invited me along, so I’m pretty excited to not only see him in action, but to also walk through the halls of English/British history.
I’m not entirely sure where the House of Lords is located, but I’m hoping it’s in the Parliament building (I’ve never been in).
Before the event, which begins at 18:00pm, I hope to spend some time in one of my favourite areas of London: Covent Garden. I haven’t booked my hostel yet, but I hope to stay somewhere close by.
I will leave London on Friday evening, which leaves me another full day to see the city I once lived. I’m thinking about maybe taking a trip back to Royal Holloway, University of London, where I lived in 2007 and 2008 while completing my masters degree in International Relations.
This trip to London is particularly memorable because I haven’t seen Dr Ahmed in over three years. The two events at the U.S. Embassy and House of Lords will also surely have a lasting impact. I’m very much looking forward to it.
I guess I should arrange a cab from Heathrow to the Embassy, find a hostel to stay in, and maybe book a flight back to Dublin for Friday evening.
I will blog about the experience on Saturday when I return to Dublin.
The latest article I wrote on America’s Founding Fathers, Islam and One Film 9/11 has been published worldwide. The most recent publications have come in Bikya Masr in Egypt and Le Soir in Belgium.
One of Egypt’s largest English media outlets, Bikya Masr is a multiple award-winning independent news website with staff based across the globe. Le Soir is a Berliner Format Belgian newspaper. Founded in 1887 by Emile Rossel, it is one of the most popular Francophone newspapers in Belgium, and considered by many a newspaper of record.
Here is the article in Bikya Masr
Here is the article in Le Soir
One Film 9/11 has reached the world through publications in Voice of America, Alhurra, Muslim Village, Huffington Post, and Arab News. One Film 9/11 is entering a new phase which is focused on finding partners and sponsorers as well as setting up screenings and events. The next two events will be held at the U.S. Embassy in London and the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London. You can read more about these events here.
Alhurra is a United States-based Arabic language outlet funded by the United States Congress which broadcasts news to the Middle East and North Africa. Its stated mission is to provide ‘objective, accurate and relevant news and information’ to its audience while seeking to ‘support democratic values’ and ‘expand the spectrum of ideas, opinions, and perspectives’ available in the region’s media.
Alhurra just wrote a review of an article I recently wrote on Islam and America’s Founding Fathers. The review should be read by many people considering that Alhurra has over 625,000 followers on Facebook and over 100,000 on Twitter.
You can find that review here.
What are your feelings when watching this? Are you happy or sad? Motivated or depressed? Something totally different?
I’d appreciate your feedback in the comments section. Thank you.
- Film-work: “Nothingness” (short film based in Ireland) (craigconsidinetcd.wordpress.com)
Here is my latest article on what America’s Founding Fathers would say about Islam. The article is driven by my new interfaith initiative One Film 9/11. You can read more about the initiative here and join us on Facebook. Hope you enjoy the article and blog.
Tags: Craig Considine, Huffington Post, Interfaith, Interfaith Dialogue, Islam, Islam and the Founding Fathers, Islam and the United States, Journey into America, One Film 9/11, Religion and Politics, Religion and Spirituality
Middle East Voices is a unique social journalism project powered by Voice of America (VOA). Its goal is to inform, amplify voices, stimulate dialogue and foster understanding within, without and across man-made borders.
Voice of America is the official external broadcast institution of the United States federal government. It is one of five civilian U.S. international broadcasters working under the umbrella of the Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG). VOA provides a wide range of programming for broadcast on radio and TV and the Internet outside of the U.S. in 43 languages. VOA produces about 1,500 hours of news and feature programming each week for an estimated global audience of 123 million people, “to promote freedom and democracy and to enhance understanding through multimedia communication of accurate, objective, and balanced news, information and other programming about America and the world to audiences overseas.”
It has been challenging for me – a young Catholic working in interfaith dialogue – to watch the escalation of conflict between Muslim communities the world over and the United States. Observing this escalation as an American citizen has been equally difficult because religious tolerance is at the heart of my definition of American identity. For this reason I want to discuss the values of the Founding Fathers and their faith that America would always be a place that is open to people from all faiths.
- One Film 9/11 article promoting Founding Fathers and Islam in Common Ground News Service (onefilm911.wordpress.com)
- Watch Urdu Voice of America cover interfaith dialogue and screening at Washington National Cathedral (onefilm911.wordpress.com)
- Pope should focus on bringing peace than blessing motorcycles, Hindus assert (bikyamasr.com)
- Sacred Ground (Eboo Patel) — A Review (bobcornwall.com)
Tags: American, American identity, Catholic, Conflict, Craig Considine, Founding Fathers, Interfaith, Interfaith dialog, Interfaith Dialogue, Islam, Islamophobia, Journey into America, Muslim, Muslims and non-Muslims, One Film 9/11, Peace, Religion and Spirituality, Religious tolerance
Click HERE to access the article.
This is an especially important publication because it reaches in area of the world which has been fundamentally impacted by various conflicts in the post-9/11 world. In fact, President Obama has called this area ‘the most dangerous place in the world’.
The Frontier Post is the only English-language newspaper distributed through Pakistan and Afghanistan collectively, The Frontier Post is based in Peshawar, inKhyber Pakhtunkhwa, previously known as the North-West Frontier Province of Pakistan.
According to http://www.khyberpakhtunkhwa.gov.pk/:
The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa is one of the most legendary places on earth. The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, as it is and was popularly known, of all Pakistan’s Provinces, is arguably the most diverse ethnically, the most varied in terrain and sports a vigorous cultural spectrum.
The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa conjures up a world of valour and war, of rugged men and mountains, of tribesmen shaped in a heroic, hos¬pitable mould. Gateway to the Subcontinent, since times immemorial, it has witnessed migration-waves of peoples,campaigns of conquerors, flow of innumerable caravans of commerce, influx of intellectuals, artists, poets and saints from the north into its fertile valleys and onwards to the plains of the Punjab, Sindh and beyond the Indus to South Asia.
Tags: Afghanistan, Bridge building, Conflict, Craig Considine, Frontier Post, Interfaith initiative, Journey into America, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Khyber Paktunkwha, North-West Frontier Province, One Film 9/11, Pakistan, Peshawar, Provinces, Sindh, South Asia, The Frontier Post, West vs. Islam
Arab News is an English-language daily newspaper published in Saudi Arabia. It is published simultaneously from Jeddah, Riyadh, and Dammam. The target audiences of the paper are businessmen, executives and diplomats. In addition to its domestic distribution in Saudi Arabia, Arab News has a wide range of international distribution, including United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar, Oman, Near East,North Africa, Europe and the USA.
October 24, 2012 Work: My latest article on Founding Fathers and Islam in Common Ground News Service
One Film 9/11 and Journey into America continue to receive attention. Read my latest article, ‘What would America’s Founding Fathers say about Islam?’, in Common Ground News Service:
Americans and Muslims worldwide shouldn’t be surprised when they see that the writings of America’s Founding Fathers reveal an open perspective and absolute acceptance of Islam and, indeed, all religions. “The bosom of America,” wrote George Washington in 1783, is “open to receive . . . the oppressed and persecuted of all nations and religions, whom we shall welcome to a participation of all our rights and privileges . . . They may be Mahometans [Muslims], Jews, or Christians of any sect, or they may be atheists.”
Tags: America's Founding Fathers, American identity, Articles, Benjamin Franklin and Islam, Common Ground News Service, Craig Considine, Documentary, George Washington and Islam, Interfaith Dialogue, Islam in America, Journey into America, Muslim Americans, One Film 9/11 initiative, Pluralism, Publications, Religious freedom, Thomas Jefferson and Islam
It has been a little over 30 days since I started the One Film 9/11 interfaith initiative. This last week has been probably the most productive since the initiative started, so I figured now is a good time to give you the latest news.
The biggest breakthrough is that both the U.S. Embassy in London and the Department of South Asia at S.O.A.S. – University of London have agreed to host a One Film 9/11 event as well as a screening of Journey into America. You can find out more details about these events here.
In other news, the article I wrote for the Pakistan Link has been translated into Urdu, which makes it easier for me to reach non-English speaking people in Pakistan. Additionally, the Journey into America You Tube channel recently passed the 400,000 video view mark. You can visit the channel here.
I also want to alert you to an important post I wrote which explains why joining the One Film 9/11 may be of interest to you. I have laid out five reasons why I think you should join our Facebook page and kindly asked you to join. I hope that you do.
The last thing I want to share with you is this lovely message from a young Baha’i woman from Dublin. Check out her warm words for One Film 9/11.
It looks like Common Ground News Service will be publishing another one of my articles in the next few weeks. They have a huge global audience, so this bodes well for our outreach.
If you have any ideas or thoughts, please don’t hesitate to drop a comment or message on the One Film 9/11 blog.
As I mentioned previously, when I play around with the blinds over my window, I can create some pretty magical displays of light.
When I play around with the blinds over my window, I can create some pretty magical displays of light.
Picture/poem © Craig Considine
After Kahlil Gibran
Sons of my ancient mother,
you riders of the tides,
How often have you sailed in my dreams.
And now you come in my awakening,
which is my deeper dream.
Ready am I to go,
and my eagerness with sails full set awaits the wind.
Only another breath will I breathe in this still air,
only another loving look cast backward,
And then I shall stand among you,
a seafarer among seafarers.
Who alone are peace and freedom to the river and the stream,
Only another winding will this stream make,
only another murmur in this glade,
And then I shall come to you,
a boundless drop to a boundless ocean.
Also published in Islamophobia Today
The anti-Islamic propaganda film Innocence of Muslims exacerbated the stereotypes and animosities between Americans and Muslims worldwide. The anti-American protests that have swept across the world have proven that for better or worse, one film can make a difference. For this reason I’m informing you about the documentary feature film Journey into America (2009) and its subsequent initiative One Film 9/11.
Journey into America is a groundbreaking and timely documentary that records Ambassador Akbar Ahmed and his team of students as they visited more than 100 mosques in cities, suburbs and towns across America. Unlike Innocence of Muslims, which enhances animosity towards Islam with antagonistic messages, Journey into America teaches that cultural dialogue and interfaith understanding is our best chance at improving relations between Americans and Muslims.
Journey into America reveals how recognition of the humanity of others is key to a civilized society. As interfaith activist Eboo Patel noted, Journey into America launches the next generation of bridge-builders, many of whom are non-Muslim Americans working towards strengthening bonds with the Muslim world. U.S. Representative Keith Ellison, the first-ever Muslim elected to Congress, called Ahmed’s project ‘the essential pillar in the effort to building the interfaith bridge of understanding’. Ingrid Mattson, the former president of the Islamic Society of North America, called Journey into America refreshing because it takes away the fear and strangeness of encountering strangers, which, again, was essentially the opposite of what Innocence of Muslims attempted to do.
Noam Chomsky, one of the foremost intellectuals in the world, stated in Journey into America that ‘America is a very frightened country’. The film, however, combats fear by informing, provoking, and inspiring Americans to see their Muslim neighbors as fellow Americans. In the film, you can see the tremendous warmth and hospitality of Muslims towards a predominantly non-Muslim team. The film debunks the myth that Muslims can’t be good Americans and that Islam is fundamentally incompatible with American values. One of the film’s most powerful scenes is when the team visited the Arlington National Cemetery gravestone of a Pakistani American who gave his life for the U.S. during the Iraq War. What could be more ‘American’ than that?
For Muslims worldwide, Journey into America can serve as a lesson on the Muslim experience in the U.S. The film can help shatter the prevalent notion in the Muslim world that America is a monolithic entity which hates Muslims and Islam. By watching Journey into America, Muslims worldwide can learn that the has U.S. welcomed their fellow Muslims throughout its history with open arms and that Muslim-Americans are proud of being American and happy living in the U.S. A particular scene detailing the life of one Pakistani immigrant shows how the ‘American Dream’ offers unlimited opportunities for Muslims. Simple and practical stories such as these help demonstrate to Muslims worldwide that many Americans value their Muslim neighbors and that many Americans adhere to the pluralist and egalitarian vision laid out by founding fathers.
Journey into America should be required viewing for all Americans and Muslims worldwide. For this reason I have started the initiative One Film 9/11. The purpose of this initiative is to screen Journey into America in as many places of religious worship around the world on September 11th, 2013 in the hope of improving relations between American and Muslims.
We learned through Innocence of Muslims that one film can make a difference in the way Americans and Muslims perceive each other. Now is the time for Journey into America to make the difference, but for the better. If you want to help, please join One Film 9/11 at onefilm911.wordpress.com.
Tags: Akbar Ahmed, Americans, Craig Considine, Documentary, Eboo Patel, Film, Ingrid Mattson, Innocence of Muslims, Interfaith Dialogue, Journey into America, Muslim world, Noam Chomsky, One Film 9/11, Religion
I usually take the 6:30 pm (Boston time) flight back to Dublin, but the flight this time around was delayed 3 hours due to bad weather. If it wasn’t for the delay, taking these pictures would’ve been impossible. We were lucky enough to fly over the emerald isle as the sun was rising. These were truly breathtaking to see.
I’m heading to Logan Airport in a bit to fly back to Dublin. It’s hard to believe that I’m starting the third year of my Ph.D. Time flies when you’re busy and having fun.
The summer of 2012 was a great one. I spent it relaxing and chilling mostly with my family.
I can’t explain to you in words how awesome my Ma’s cooking was. So many delicious meals, from her baked macaroni (macaroni and cheese), to her homemade marinara sauce and meatballs, to raviolis and rigatonis. I’m glad we were able to make it to St. Anthony’s Feast in the North End.
My father and I had some great evenings at our favourite pub, The Biltmore. We had a few laughs, as we always do, on our porch during those hot and sunny New England nights. We discussed politics and had a few laughs at the many Romney gaffes.
My summer was also eventual because of the research I conducted. I managed to complete a bunch of semi-structured interviews and met some fascinating people along the way.
I also managed to run a ton over the summer. I worked my way up to running about 8 miles daily with little discomfort. My amazing sister (Ali) and I had a great run in South Boston where she told me some pretty important stuff. I’ll have to wait to tell at another time.
Of course I can’t forget my lovely Mel, who I spent Google chatting with throughout the days. I can’t wait to be back with her in The Liberties. She brings a kind of peace into my life found nowhere else.
It’s always a bit difficult leaving home. But life must go on. Over the years, I’ve learned that home, as an idea or concept, always travels. Just because I’m not physically at home doesn’t mean I’m not there, or that home isn’t with me. It’s all in my head. Home is how you think of it.
The time we have with our loved ones is precious. Take advantage of it. Time flies. Have no regrets.
I’m posting this picture (which was a vetted CNN iReport) to remember Occupy Dame Street (Dublin) and the one year anniversary of the start of the global Occupy Movement.
The light: that spark, that thought in your head,
the wisdom from without and in turn within.
Give thanks for without it we’d be empty and stricken by blaze.
I dream before I even dream and I think before I even think,
I’m ahead even when I’m behind and I have little idea of how it happens.
But it does, and when it does,
it’s an uncontrollable,
By now many of you have heard of the propaganda film Innocence of Muslims which led to a tragedy in Benghazi and an almost-tragedy in Cairo. For better or worse, these events proved that one film can make a huge difference, which is why I want to inform you about Journey into America (2009) by Ambassador AKBAR AHMED and its subsequent initiative One Film 9/11.
Ambassador Ahmed is a scholar of contemporary Islam, a respected interfaith spokesman, and believer in the vision of America’s founding fathers. His ultimate goal is to improve the relationship between Americans and Muslims both in the U.S. and in the Muslim world. The film documents Ahmed’s team as they travelled around the U.S. for nine months to visit more than 100 mosques in cities, suburbs and towns across America. His team of students, of which I was one, explored the relationship between Americans and Islam in light of 9/11.
In Journey into America, some influential theorists had through provoking things to say about Islam and American identity. Noam Chomsky, one of the greatest critics of American society and U.S. foreign policy, said Americans have always been driven by ‘myth and ‘fear’. Sheikh Hamza Yusuf, an American-born convert to Islam and leader of Zaytuna College, talked about Malcolm X and the last respected forms of racism in American society. Reverend Jessie Jackson, the civil rights campaigner alongside Martin Luther King Jr. in the 1960s, said Americans have to work hard at inter-ethnic relations.
Many of the sensational comments made in Innocence of Muslims are also made in Journey into America. On Madison Avenue in Manhattan at the annual Muslim Day Parade, a white woman screamed to Muslims that the Prophet Muhammad was a ‘child killer’ and ‘rapist’. Muslim- Americans, in turn, screamed back ‘your country kills more people than anybody!’ and ‘you’re the child killer!’.
Journey into America, however, isn’t just a film about Islam. It’s a film that dissects the competing narratives of American identity. To put the experience of Muslim Americans into context, we had to journey into non-Muslim communities to see how Mormons, Native Americans, Jews, and other groups responded to the events of 9/11. The main question we asked all Americans was What does it mean to be American? Ultimately, we found the need for more cross-cultural and religious understanding, people who are willing to build bridges rather than burn them, and a return to America’s quintessential principle of religious freedom.
Innocence of Muslims motivated me to initiate the project One Film 9-11. This project, which started on September 12, 2012 in light of the attack in Benghazi, is a mission to screen Journey into America in as many mosques as possible around the world on September 11, 2013. Journey into America was groundbreaking in 2009 and needs to break ground again in 2012 and beyond.
As we learned through Innocence of Muslims, one film can make a huge difference. Please help me make Journey into America one of these films, but for the better.
or who may have received it from
Here it reads in Nicholson:
Creatures equal subjects to changing ‘states’,
but some people have no ‘state’,
because his vestiges are affaced
and his essence annihilated
by the essence of another.
Traces lost in another’s traces.
After Reynold A. Nicholson
Jesus passed by three men.
Their bodies were lean and their faces pale.
He asked them,
‘What has brought you to this plight?’
‘Fear of the Fire’.
‘You fear a thing created,
and it behoves God
that he should save those who fear’.
Jesus left them and passed by three others,
whose faces were paler and their bodies leaner,
he asked them, saying,
‘What has brought you to this plight?’
‘Longing for Paradise’.
‘You desire a thing created,
and it behoves God
that He should give you that which you hope for’.
Jesus went on
and passed by three others of exceeding paleness and leanness,
so that their faces were as mirrors of light,
‘What has brought you to this?’
‘Our love of God’.
‘You are the nearest to Him,
You are the nearest to Him’.
Reclaiming the Beard in Behalf of Christianity, Huffington Post, June 11th.
Honoring Muslim American Veterans on Memorial Day, Huffington Post, May 26th.
Documents Show Prophet Muhammad and U.S. Founding Fathers Were Kindreds Spirits, ISLAMiCommentary (Duke Islamic Studies Center), May 19th.
Morocco and US must not let recent spat harm their historic friendship, Morocco World News, May 6th.
A Challenge for the Media to Counter ‘Burn the Quran Day’, Huffington Post, May 3rd.
BOSTONIANS WILL TRANSCEND FEAR AFTER MARATHON BOMBINGS, Huffington Post, April 25th.
ALLAH OR GOD, IT DOESN’T MATTER TO ME, Huffington Post, April 22nd.
FINDING TOLERANCE IN AKBAR, THE PHILOSOPHER-KING, ISLAMiCommentary (Duke Islamic Studies Center), April 10th.
ANOTHER WAY TO CELEBRATE SAINT PATRICK’S DAY, Huffington Post, March 15th.
GEORGE WASHINGTON WAS A FRIEND OF MUSLIMS, Huffington Post, January 18th.
HUFFPO: GEORGE WASHINGTON WAS JUST LIKE THE PROPHET MUHAMMAD, FOX NATION, January 13th.
AN UNLIKELY CONNECTION BETWEEN THE PROPHET MUHAMMAD AND GEORGE WASHINGTON, HUFFINGTON POST, January 10th.
IT’S ANTI-AMERICAN TO CARE ABOUT THE PRESIDENT’S RELIGION, The Clarion Ledger (Mississippi), November 6th.
IT’S ANTI-AMERICAN TO CARE ABOUT THE PRESIDENT’S RELIGION, Huffington Post, November 5th.
WHAT WOULD AMERICA’S FOUNDING FATHERS SAY ABOUT ISLAM, Bikya Masr (Egypt), November 4th.
Les Pères fondateurs des Etats-Unis et l’islam?, Le Soir (Belgium), November 1st.
ISLAM AND AMERICA’S FOUNDING FATHERS, Muslim Village (Australia), November 3rd.
WHAT WOULD AMERICA’S FOUNDING FATHERS SAY ABOUT ISLAM?, Huffington Post, October 31st.
VOICES: WHAT WOULD AMERICA’S FOUNDING FATHERS SAY ABOUT ISLAM?, Voice of America News, October 29th.
Les Pères fondateurs des Etats-Unis : Que diraient-ils sur l’islam?, Oumma, October 27.
Les Pères fondateurs des Etats-Unis : Que diraient-ils sur l’islam?, Yenoo Belgique Magazine, October 27.
WHAT WOULD AMERICA’S FOUNDING FATHERS SAY ABOUT ISLAM, The Frontier Post (Khyber Pakhtunkwha, Pakistan), October 26.
WHAT WOULD AMERICA’S FOUNDING FATHERS SAY ABOUT ISLAM, Common Ground News Service, October 23.
‘ONE FILM 9/11′ CAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE, Huffington Post, October 8.
‘ONE FILM 9/11 INITIATIVE’ CAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE, The American Muslim, October 4.
ONE FILM 9/11 CAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE, Islamophobia Today, September 26.
HOW 9/11 CHANGED RELIGION IN AMERICA, Huffington Post, September 11.
TEA PARTY FOUNDER OVERLOOKED MUSLIMS’ SACRIFICE FOR U.S. Arizona Capitol Times, August 3.
‘Preface’, Trinity College Dublin Journal of Postgraduate Research, Volume 11: Ireland’s Research on the World Stage
HOMELESS, IRISH INDEPENDENT, 14 December.
FOUNDING FATHERS ROLLING IN THEIR GRAVES WITH GINGRICH, ISLAMOPHOBIA TODAY, December 12.
ISLAMOPHOBIC YELLOW JOURNALISTS ATTACK PROFESSOR AHMED, AGAIN, JOURNEY INTO AMERICA BLOG. February 25.
PAINTING THE TRUE PICTURE OF AMERICA, COMMON GROUND NEWS SERVICE, April 2010. (Also published by ZAMAN (Turkey), Kuwait Times, Saudi Gazette, Bikya Masr (Egypt), Pakistan Christian Post, Middle East Times, and The Muslim (Canada)).
‘JOURNEY INTO AMERICA’ UNLEASHES A CHALLENGE FOR AMERICANS, THE AMERICAN MUSLIM, June 2.
LIEBERMAN’S DANGEROUS AND HYPOCRITICAL ‘CITIZENSHIP STRIP’ LEGISLATION, WORLD CAN’T WAIT, May 7.
PENTAGON PUTS WIKILEAKS IN ITS SIGHT, WORLD CAN’T WAIT, April 7.
OBAMA: CONTINUING BUSH’S WAR CRIMES WITH DRONE BOMBING CAMPAIGN, WORLD CAN’T WAIT, April 1.
EMPIRE AND OKINAWA, WORLD CAN’T WAIT, March 28.
SUSPECTED MILITANTS, WORLD CAN’T WAIT, March 27.
U.S. BRINGS DEMOCRACY TO IRAQ? HARDLY, WORLD CAN’T WAIT, March 11.
OVER 1,000,000 DEAD IRAQIS FROM 2003 U.S. LED INVASION, WORLD CAN’T WAIT, March 8.
2009 TOLL OF NATO AIR STRIKES: 131 DEAD CHILDREN, WORLD CAN’T WAIT, February 26.
MCCHRYSTAL’S MURDEROUS AFGHAN ‘PROTECTION’ RACKET – DEATH TOLL CLIMBS TO 27, WORLD CAN’T WAIT. February 23.
NATO COMMANDERS ON AFGHAN CIVILIAN DEATHS: ROCKETS ‘HIT THEIR INTENDED TARGETS‘, WORLD CAN’T WAIT, February 17.
THE REAPER AND PREDATOR DRONES: ‘TWIN TERRORIZERS OF U.S. AND U.K.’, WORLD CAN’T WAIT, February 10.
AUTOPSY REPORT IN MICHIGAN: IMAM SHOT 21 TIMES BY POLICE, WORLD CAN’T WAIT, February 4.
MAKING ENEMIES; OR, THE MURDEROUS HYPOCRISY OF DRONE STRIKES, WORLD CAN’T WAIT, February 1.
A CELEBRATION FOR ALL: LAUNCHING ‘JOURNEY INTO AMERICA’ FILM, PAKISTAN LINK, July 3.
A TRAGEDY AT FORT HOOD, PAKISTAN LINK, November 9.
OBAMA SHOULD LISTEN TO THE PASHTUNS, PAKHTUNKHWATIMES. December.
A 21ST CENTURY RENAISSANCE MAN, PAKISTAN LINK, October 2.
“JOURNEY INTO ISLAM” LAUNCHED AT PRESTIGIOUS INSTITUTIONS, PAKISTAN LINK, July 6.
THE REFLECTIONS OF A CONCERNED YOUNG AMERICA, PAKISTAN LINK. April 13.
‘JOURNEY INTO ISLAM’, PAKISTAN LINK, February 16.
THE SEARCH FOR ILM: ‘GLORIES OF ISLAMIC ART’, PAKISTAN LINK, February 2.
THE COMMON THREAT, PAKISTAN LINK, October 12.
Tags: America, Arab News, Articles, Clarion Ledger, Craig Considine, Frontier Post, Huffington Post, Identity, Interfaith Dialogue, Islam, Islamophobia, Journey into America, Memorial Day, Muhammad, Muslim, Muslims, Prophet Muhammad, Publications, Trinity College Dublin, United States, Writer, Writing, Yanoo Belgique Magazine
September 11, 2012 Work: Huffington Post piece, ‘The “other” Islam’ and reflecting on religion and 9/11
A short piece I wrote about how 9/11 changed the way I looked at religion, specifically Islam, was published today (September 11th) in the Huffington Post’s article (slide 12) How 9/11 Changed Religion in America. I’m honoured to be featured alongside a Hindu Monk, a Sikh activist, an Ahmadi writer, a Jewish scholar, a Dean at USC, and an Atheist.
What is the hardest task in the world?
I would put myself in the attitude to look in the eye an abstract truth,
and I cannot.
I blench and withdraw on this side and on that.
I seem to know what he meant who said,
No man can see God face to face and live.
a man explores the basis of civil government.
Let him intend his mind without respite,
in one direction.
His best heed long time avails him nothing.
Yet thoughts are flitting before him.
We all but apprehend,
we dimly forebode the truth.
I will walk abroad,
but cannot find it.
It seems as if we needed only the stillness and composed attitude of the library to seize the thought.
But we come in,
and are as far from it as at first.
in a moment,
the truth appears.
wandering light appears,
and is the distinction,
But the oracle comes,
because we had previously laid siege to the shrine.
It seems as if the law of the intellect resembled that law of nature by which we now inspire,
now expire the breath;
by which the heart now draws in,
then hurls out the blood -
the law of undulation.
So now you must labor with your brains,
and now you must forbear your activity and see what the great Soul showeth.
First published in Irish Independent
What is it like to be homeless? Most people never even ponder such a question.
Craig is a homeless poet who writes his long poems on the pavement near the Molly Malone statue outside Trinity College’s walls. I walked by Craig about one year ago. I handed him a one-euro coin and he gave me a sheet with the following lines. Craig titled it: ‘The Law of Attraction’.
The only time that you should look down on someone,
Is when you are helping them up,
And I’m not just talking of a beggar with a cup.
I ran my own business for many happy years,
Until bankruptcy left me with nothing but tears.
You lose your job, can’t pay the rent,
End up on the streets or even a tent.
I’ll be the first to hold up my hands to say,
That I’ve made my fair share of mistakes along the way.
I’m not a saint but I’m certainly no sinner,
I’m just doing my best to be a winner.
Not all homeless people are lazy or workshy,
Afraid of finding a job or even bothering to try,
But everybody deserves a second chance in life,
To find a job, a home, even children and wife.
And there is always hope, or so it seems,
So never give in or abandon your dreams.
Always stay positive in everything you do,
The answer to your problems lies within you.
If you firmly believe it, you can surely achieve it.
Tough times don’t last forever but tough people do,
Your dreams and your destiny are all up to you.
These are my words, I write here for you today,
I hope you will find some comfort in them today.
Poem by ‘Craig’.
Letter by Craig Considine, PhD candidate
Department of Sociology,
Trinity College, Dublin
Thank you for taking the time to come and visit me. Thank you for your kind note.
I really enjoyed meeting you. I have a sixth sense about people. Or perhaps a visceral feeling. Even enough I met you for a few minutes, I knew you would be an interesting person. And I was correct.
I would like to meet you again. Unfortunately I have misplaced the number you wrote on a card. It was your parents phone number.
I am leaving for California tomorrow. I will return on Friday (Sept 3rd). So please call me on Tuesday Sept 4.
I am very interested in visiting the sanctuary or park in Newton you talked about. In a metropolitan area flooded with noise and human pollution finding an oasis of tranquility is a true blessing.
Hope I hear from you soon.
From a world renowned doctor and one of the most enlightening human beings in the world. I swear.
Picture – Call to fight in Athens (August 17 2012)
Picture – Occupy Dame Street (October 18 2011)
Video – Inauguration Day on Former Slave Island in Georgia (January 20 2009)
Video – Islam and Hip Hop with Q-Boogie (November 20 2008)
Video – Interview in Chomsky’s Office (October 23 2008)
Video – Somali Muslims in Grand Island Nebraska (October 16 2008)