Saturday, March 9, 2013
Texas Faith: The Global South’s influence on religion
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
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.
Dr. Mike Ghouse
Mike has a dream, a dream that one day in our life time; we all will wake up to a cohesive world, where no human lives in tension, apprehension or fear of the other. Indeed, that was the dream of all the spiritual masters of the world, and that is what the creator wants; all pieces of his creation to function coherently.
Nothing in the universe will happen by itself, all of us have to do our share of the work to restore the harmony within our self, with our bodies and with people around us. Don’t you think God knows this? Yet through every religion, we are told to ask for it.
Our founding fathers believed, “That all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness.” And that dream was refreshed by Martin Luther King, Jr.
Mike is available to speak to your groups, conduct workshops on building cohesive work places and living a meaningful life, and move towards living in harmony, one person at a time.
Thanks to Sean Hannity, Fox News, Syndicated Radio shows, Dallas Morning News, Huffington Post, and a variety of News Papers here and abroad for giving him a strong National and local presence. Mike has appeared in over 100 shows on Fox News and over 50 times on nationally syndicated radio shows.
He has written nearly 3000 articles, and bulk of them are published in Dallas Morning News, Huffington Post, New Age Islam, Op-ed News , Arab Daily News, Arab News, Saudi Gazette, and several other News papers and periodicals around the world. Of the 2800, 1000+ were on Islam, 1000+ on Pluralism and the rest were on politics, India, Pakistan, Israel-Palestine, Motivational and other topics.
Currently Mike is working on making a film based on a compelling true story of building a cohesive America, and writing a book on human rights - "Standing up for others"- standing up from Atheists to Zoroastrians and every one in between.
Please watch the 10 Minutes trailer of the documentary in making https://www.youtube.com/watch?
God has blessed him with an aptitude for mitigating conflicts and nurturing goodwill in everything he does, that is think, talk and act, and he has been a life time volunteer, and it is a joy to maintain a healthy balance between earning a living and serving the public.
He has spoken at international forums including the Council for a Parliament of the World’s Religions, in Melbourne, Australia, Middle East Peace Initiative, in Jerusalem, the International Leadership conference, in Hawaii, and in Washington, Many Universities including SMU, Rice and others, World's Philanthropy organization's annual conference in Washington and elsewhere.
He is a member of the Texas Faith panel at Dallas Morning News and writes on issues facing the nation every week and offers pluralistic solutions. He writes regularly at Huffington post, Op-ed News, Arab Daily News and several other papers worldwide.
Mike was a commissioner at City of Carrollton, and president of many a organizations including North Texas Cricket Association, Indian Creek Home owners Association, and Dallas Fashions for Charity etc. A founding member of the board at Memnosyne Foundation, and board of director at Dallas Peace Center, Dallas Home Builders Association and several other organizations.
God has made him an instrument in establishing several annual public events to bring Americans of different religions, ethnicities and races together on common grounds of building a safe, secure and a cohesive America, among them are Unity Day USA, Holocaust and Genocides, Thanksgiving Celebrations. We have and plan to hold workshops and conferences on issues like religion, racism, Anti-Semitism, Islamophobia, LGBT, gender pluralism and other issues.
Concerned by the political, civil, religious, racial, sexual orientation and economic divisiveness, Mike has initiated and formed the America Together Foundation (ATF), a non-profit entity committed to building a cohesive America, where no American has to live with anxiety, apprehension, or fear of the other. The focus of the foundation is that ‘one must be free to live his or her life to the fullest’.
He firmly believes in our immortal declaration of independence. “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights that among these are Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness. That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.”
He believes in Conflict mitigation and goodwill nurturance that Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) chose in dealing with issues of the day, and he has successfully employed that ideal in dealing with Pastor Robert Jeffress of Dallas who denigrated Quran, which led to a Quran conference in creating goodwill among non-Muslim clergy. The conference details are at www.QuraanConference.com
When Pastor Terry Jones announced burning 3000 copies of Quran, Mike was out there in Florida and gathered up the civil, political and religious leaders to peacefully offer prayer as an alternative instead of burning Qurans to avenge the 9/11 Victims. A message was sent to the world that freedom of speech is an important American value and respecting what is sacred to others is an important value as well. A movie is being considered that will change the perceptions about Muslims and change within Muslims in dealing with the conflicts. Full story is at:http://worldmuslimcongress.
blogspot.com/2014/04/ reestablishing-right-muslim- attitudes.html
Mike was further involved with the conflicts at the Ground Zero Mosque, Peter King Hearings and other conflicts, and had offered pluralistic solutions. There is a blog for each one of these conflicts.
As much work as he has done with interfaith communities, he has a strong presence in the intra-faith dialogue as well. Having moderated two major intra-faith conferences at Rice University and in Dallas, and two Sharia conferences were held to allay the Sharia Phobia. He has prayed in all mosques, and wrote a blog on Ramadan sharing the practices in each tradition. There is a blog for it – www.RamadanExclusive.com
Mike started the Radio for Desi community in Dallas in 1996 with three hours on Saturdays, and passed it on to others, and now we have three 24/7 Radio Stations in Dallas. It was always loaded with interfaith programs. Mike ran a program called wisdom of religion, all religions for two years – where 520 Hours of Radio talk was done – 100 hours + for Islam, Hinduism and Christianity each, and 50 hours each for Baha’i, Buddhism, Jainism, Sikhism, Zoroastrianism, Atheism, interfaith and other traditions. The idea was to education and to learn about others, as God has willed in Quran 49:13 and other verses. Similarly 26 workshops were also conducted.
Mike is a human rights activist, and his book standing up for others will be out soon. He is also producing a feature film “Sacred" to be released and a documentary "Americans together" to be released in the next few years.
All about him is listed in 63 links at www.MikeGhouse.net and his writings are at www.TheGhousediary.com - Mike is committed to building cohesive societies and offers pluralistic solutions on issues of the day.
1. Google Profile - over 10 Million views – https://plus.google.com/
2. Personal Curriculum vitae: http://www.mikeghouse.
3. Comprehensive Profile - http://mikeghouse.net/
4. Muslim Speaker http://mikeghouse.
5. Pluralism Speaker http://www.
mikeghouse.net/ InterfaithSpeaker_MikeGhouse. asp
6. Motivational Speaker: http://www.
mikeghouse.net/Motivational. speeches.Speaker.MikeGhouse. asp
7. Speaker on Israel - http://israel-palestine-
dialogue.blogspot.com/2014/12/ speaker-on-israel-mike-ghouse. html
8. Speaker on India - http://MikeGhouseforindia.
9. Disclosures – Almost everything about me is at: http://mikeghouse.net/
10. Michami Dukadam - Starting life all over again - http://theghousediary.
blogspot.com/2013/11/michami- dukadam-starting-life-over- with.html
Human Rights | Standing up for HumanityStanding up for Jews, Hindus, Christians, Atheists, Sikhs, Gays and Lesbians,
Coming up for Jains, Zoroastrians, Native Americans, Pagans and Muslims
Other write ups
Dallas Morning News - Defending Islam
news/columnists/steve-blow/ 20100919-In-defense-of-Islam- pursuing-9397.ece
Saudi Gazette about Mike
blogspot.com/2015/07/united- voices-for-america-saudi- gazette.html
Dallas Observer on my Radio Show - front page big piece
Dallas Morning News - Wisdom of Religion Radio Show
foundationforpluralism.com/ Articles/Religious-tolerance- in-action-DallasNews- December2004.asp
9/11 and My personal story ( over 2 Million Reads)
blogspot.com/2014/09/911-my- personal-journey-from-2001. html
My Name is Mike Ghouse
Holocaust and the Muslim guy
mike-ghouse/holocaust-and-the- muslim-_b_4629509.html#es_ share_ended
Indian American Pluralist
blogspot.com/2012/12/mike- ghouse-indian-american- pluralist.html
Unity Day USA - a major annual event that brings Americans together for 13 years
Holocaust and Genocides - annual event to reflect on Holocaust and Genocides for the last 12 years www.
Thanksgiving Celebrations - annual event of cultural expression for the last 18 years www.
Quran Burning Situation in Florida and a film in the making
A new paradigm in changing perceptions about Muslims, a movie is being made on the actual story - http://worldmuslimcongress.
blogspot.com/2014/04/ reestablishing-right-muslim- attitudes.html
Quran Conference - A completely new successful system created to clarify the challenged verses http://
Sharia Conference - A seminal Article on Sharia and conferences
Quran Today - A successful Blog demystifying myths about Quranic verses
Ramadan Cohesion - Never before in the history of Muslims, a Muslim has visited all the mosques of all different denominations to build understanding between different traditions. http://
Ground Zero Mosque involvement from day 1
Involvement with Peter King Hearings
Israel Palestine Blog - to see both sides of the issue and a commitment to find solutions
Blasphemy Laws - Tackling the laws that have creeped into Islam, and are unislamic http://
More about him in 63 links at www.MikeGhouse.net