The one question that gets asked frequently is why so many organizations? How are you different than others?
The simple answer is we have too many problems to deal with and we still don’t have enough organizations to deal with the multitude of issues. Each one of us is different and serving different needs of the communities, and without any doubt, there will always be some overlapping of work. I am pleased to put together a cartoon and a one liner about a few nationalistic Muslim organizations.
The following Cartoon depicts a gigantic pot of goodness, and to produce a mass amount of good stew requires massive contributions from individuals and organizations. The Muslims in America are blessed with such an invisible pot where each individual and organization pitches in to produce the good that benefits all American Muslims one way or the other.
Cartoon concept by Mike Ghouse drawn by Irfan.
The imagery of pot of stew was inspired by my visit to one of the most revered Sufi Shrines located in Ajmeer, India. There is not a Hindu, Christian, Sikh or Muslim Indian political leader who does not visit this shrine for blessings. Even foreigners like President of Pakistan Pervaz Musharraf and PM Nawaz Shariff have paid homage to this place. Personally, I visited the place to understand the phenomena without subscribing to it, I am a denomination less Muslim without any sizzle or rituals to follow, but I am interested in people and see how I can contribute towards the well being of the society as pluralism runs through my veins.
Regardless of the religiosity of the place (un-Islamic to some), what is important is this historical place has contributed to the syncretic culture of co-existence of Muslims and Hindus of India, a great model even to answer our question about too many organizations.
There was a gigantic pot of Stew taller than humans with ladders around it for individuals and individuals in the name of organizations to climb up and pour Rice, Lentil, Veggies, fruits and other ingredients in it to cook that great food to feed every visitor. It is a community dish, of the community for the community by the community.
Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) urged humanity to compete in doing good deeds, and at the end there will be a lot of good to last for generations to come. Indeed, he said, what matters to God are your Good deeds, and that is caring for fellow humans. He defined a good deed is like planting a tree knowing full well that you will not be the beneficiary of its shade or fruit when the tree gets to that stage. We are the beneficiaries of what was done by the earlier generation and it is our duty to bequeath the same to the next.
The Muslims in America are blessed with such an invisible pot where each individual and organizations like AMI, ADAMS, ISNA, CAIR, ICNA, MPAC, MSA, ISPU, MYNA, EMERGE, MA, MLFA, MACCPAC, ING, WORDE, MCMF and a host of other organizations pour in their Rice, Lentils, Tomatoes, Potatoes, Green Peas, Coriander Leaves, Onion, Salt, Pepper, Cloves, Cardamom and other ingredients in terms of service to produce goodness to benefit fellow Americans.
I pray that all of us work together and beef up each other’s work with humility; we are all in this together to produce common good.
By the way, the moment I heard the Orlando News, I wrote that, more than likely this guy is not religious. Mosque going Muslims are not radicalized and understanding per the survey released by the Institute for social policy and understanding.
Here is an outline of a few national Muslim Organizations to represent all. The work on the table started a few months ago and now finalized, the input has come from many. I wish all organizations had responded.
May God guide us to cheer and build each other.
|ADAMS||ADAMS’ mission is to provide religious, social, and educational services to Muslim community||https://www.adamscenter.org|
|AMI||A proactive voice for American Muslims with Media, policy makers, interfaith and intrafaith groups||www.AmericanMusliminstitution.org|
|CAIR||CAIR is America’s largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization.||www.Cair.com|
|EMERGE||Politically empowers and trains Muslims to be engaged and active citizens.||http://www.emerge-usa.org/|
|ICNA||A leading grassroots organization in the American Muslim community with a focus on education and outreach.||http://www.icna.org/|
|ING||Counters prejudice against American Muslims through education and interfaith dialogue.||http://www.ing.org|
|ISNA||To foster the development of the Muslim community, interfaith relations, and civic engagement||http://www.isna.net/|
|ISPU||ISPU conducts objective, solution-seeking research that empowers American Muslims||www.ispu.org|
|MA||A national legal advocacy and educational organization that works to guarantee freedom and justice for Americans of all faiths.||https://www.muslimadvocates.org|
|MACCPAC||Promoting national security, freedom, human rights, justice and peace through coalition building with government agencies||http://www.maccpac.org/|
|MLFA||Funds legal work and programs to defend Muslims against injustice in American courtrooms, prisons, and communities.||www.MLFA.org|
|MPAC||Making Muslims part of the solution||http://www.mpac.org/|
|MYNA||Empowered youth with awakened minds, inspired hearts, and enlightened actions||http://www.myna.org/|
|UPF||To counter bigotry and create peace through the media.||http://www.upf.tv/|
|WORDE||WORDE supports the development of resilient communities through research, policy analysis, and programming.||http://www.worde.org/|