Ramadan day 2 Richardson Mosque

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note that the Ramadan diary is written for our Muslim and non-Muslims friends
alike, hence the language is un-typical. We will do our best to weave through
references that our Christian, Hindu, Jewish and other friends can relate with.
By the way, we have been talking (Radio) and writing about the essence of major
festivities of all religions so we can understand each other. It is a call from
God to learn about each other and know each other, when we do that, myths about
others disappear, we open up to friendships without reserve or

Central Mosque, 840 Abrams Road,
Richardson, TX
Website: www.Iant.com

is the 2nd day of Ramadan, and I went to the Richardson Mosque, my
home Mosque (below) and the standard bearer for North Texas Mosques. A majority
of the Mosques (Sunni tradition) more or less follow the traditions followed
here. This is the first “major” Mosque in North Texas and almost every Muslim
who has been in Dallas prior to turn of the century has been a part of this
Mosque. Of course we have over 35 Mosques and several Musallas (Mini-Mosques) in
North Texas; we have enough people to have one for every denomination.

The euphoria of Ramadan lends to the fellowship (Ramadan day 1) that we
all desire and look forward to. It generates the same good feeling of kindness
and piety that Christians feel during Christmas and Hindus during Navaratri,
Jews during Rosh Hashanah and others during their

best way to enjoy Ramadan is to go early to the Mosque, and I went way too early
which lend me to talk with key people and of course, take pictures of the
sanctuary for my friends. For my Muslim friends, I highlight the uniqueness of
each denomination, much of which is cultural.

Click to enlarge 25 pics in the

first visit was with our Imam, Dr. Yusuf Zia Kavakci (more about him in the
links below) who and I have worked together on different occasions for almost 20
years from the Asian News days; he has been on my Radio show several times in
the Mid-Nineties. Our conversation is usually about intra-faith and interfaith
issues. In some of the most critical moments of my public life, he and Imam Zia
Shaikh of Irving have been great guides. There was a situation in 1996 and again
in 2005 at the Unity Day where we handled it fairly well. From time to time, he
has appreciated my approach that is free from the back-home-baggage.

Mosque has been a home Mosque to me, although I do not go there frequently, it
feels home. For those living outside the United States, you may find this as a
news item that almost every Muslim (both male and female) drives to the mosque;
there are no separate residential areas where people of any religion live
exclusively. Even though there is a trend for developing smaller neighborhoods
around the Mosques, it will not become the life style. In the long haul
integration (not assimilation) is essential for the overall good of individual
communities and nation as a whole.
Click to enlarge 25 pics in the

I was walking out of Imam Kavakci’s office, I ran into my friend Brother
Muhammad Suleman, he was the past president of the Islamic Center and president
during the 9/11 crisis, he was also featured in High Profile in Dallas Morning
News, a great honor for our community. He and I have worked on many projects
together including two years on my Radio show, wisdom of religion (all the
religions), where he and I spent two years on Radio talking about Islam on every
Friday morning for an hour. Please say your get well prayers for Mrs. Suleman
who is in hospital today.

yes, Nine Hundred people were in the community hall waiting for the Adhan
(prayer call) to signify the time to break the fast. In Jerusalem, they fire a
gun into air to signify end of Suhoor (pre dawn meal) as well as Iftaar. I was
held at the check point for Masjid Al-Aqsa by an Israeli guard, that is another
story. In smaller mosques, people gather around as a groups and there will a
personal announcement (refer to day 1) to break the fast.

Take a look at
the plates on the tables, a piece of Banana, three dates, a piece of water
melon, a glass of milk and water. The plates were all set up for people to pick
one and take their seat at the tables. Once again, that is 5 billion dates
consumption across the world, today! Why dates? That is another story, I have
written two years ago, but will re-incorporate when I see dates are flooded in
some mosque this month. Each Mosque has evolved into its own

After breaking the fast, the next call you hear is Aqama,
fairly similar to the Adhan right before the congregational prayers. Anyone can
lead the prayer, even though Dr. Yusuf Zia Kavakci is the imam (pastor, pundit,
rabbi, shaman, clergy, minister), he designates one of his students from his
academy to lead the prayers, and he has 60 Huffaz (plural for Hafiz, the one who
memorizes the whole Quraan) in Dallas, and one of them is the world renowned
one: Rashad Hussain the US Ambassador to OIC.

Click to enlarge 25 pics in the
were back to the community hall for dinner, a large open building that
accommodates nearly 1000 seated in theater style. The hall is used for basket
ball and other community activities including interfaith dinners. Nearly five
years ago, my late wife Najma’s funeral prayers were held here, the Fire
Marshall did not allow more than 2200 people, the capacity for the standing
room, that’s how Muslim funeral prayers are conducted; in standing posture. She
left in peace and thanks to our friends from every faith for participating in
the prayers.

Click to enlarge 25 pics in the

dinner for 900 people is not easy! Mr. Waqar Qazi runs the Silver Spoon
restaurant and has become quite adept in handling catering to large gatherings.
There are a few pictures of the kitchen where the volunteers formed an assembly
line that beats Henry Ford’s assembly line; they placed the food on the plate
consisting of Salad, Rice, lentil-veggies, and Chicken curry in healthy
portions. About 6 plates were placed on a tray and put on the counter… the
volunteers grabbed the tray and walked to each table, and delivered the food….
All in 20 minutes! Yes 20 Minutes! That is amazing accuracy!

Click to enlarge 25 pics in the

was a senior citizen, who did not want to be pictured or named, but the people
in Richardson know him, he is probably in his seventies, but has the energy of a
young man and was managing the food serving and delivery very effectively. He
was literally running all over the place to ensure everything ran smoothly.
Thanks to this unknown soldier.
other lead volunteer (forgive me if there was another one) was Amir Omar, the
Richardson City Councilman (pictured with a tray in his hand, clean shaven
head). He is one of the four or five who made the trips from the counter to the
tables delivering all that food in 20 minutes.

Click to enlarge pic -25 pics in link

he is one of the most popular council men in North Texas, because he is
there with
every community volunteering his time generously. He is an example of how to be a
fully participating and contributing member of the society. He is a true
representative of Richardsonians. He is on facebook as well, tag him
and show you support.

Yunus Anthony, announced a gathering
of new converts, and I regret not making it to that corner, but did talk to him,
who was also at the Carrollton Mosque yesterday. I hope he and his group will
serve as volunteers for the Unity Day event on Tuesday, September 11, 2012. God
willing, I will be visiting Churches, Temples, Synagogues and other places of
worship to find volunteer to represent every race, ethnicity and faith to be
present at the Unity Day. www.UnitydayUSA.com

the way years ago, Richardson Mosque started a Medical clinic to serve the
people who do not have insurance, it is for everyone, and people from all faiths
and traditions visit this clinic for care. I am proud of this clinic, where
Muslims are contributing to the well being of the overall society. Of course,
there are other initiatives and other clinics, and that will be expressed in a
different context.

Richardson Mosque is an example of being a part of the society, serving the
society. I believe that is the purpose of a Mosque, a community center. More
about the Mosque at www.Iant.com

Coming up; the Islamic village http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R7bjh56GU-0&feature=player_embedded#!

Here are a few pieces I have written
about Dr. Kavakci and others issues, I need to put together the work we did
through MRRT, the Muslim Rapid Response Team in 2003 in responding
to baseless allegations that the local media
levied on the Imam and this Mosque. Thanks to Dallas Morning News for publishing

v Honoring
Imam Dr. Yusuf Zia Kavakci today

v There
is only one Islamhttp://worldmuslimcongress.blogspot.com/2010/04/there-is-only-one-islam.html

v Are
Muslims a part of the American society? http://nabsites.net/demo/are-muslims-part-of-american-story/

v A call
from God to know each other

v Dallas
Interfaith Imamshttp://worldmuslimcongress.blogspot.com/2012/07/dallas-interfaith-imams-and-ramadan.html

v Ramadan
day 1, 2011http://nabsites.net/demo/day-1-of-ramadan-2011/

v A
challenge to Muslims, are we fit to be Americanshttp://nabsites.net/demo/my-challenge-to-muslims-are-we-fit-to/

v Sharia

v Facebook
– You are welcome to visit my my facebook page: www.facebook.com/SpeakerMikeGhouse
the others has reached the maximum of 5000 friends – –

Ghouse is committed to doing his individual share of building cohesive societies
and invites you to the 8th Annual Unity Day USA on Tuesday, September 11, 2012.
Details at www.UnitydayUSA.com, it’s an event that builds bridges and uplifts
every American. Watch the trailer of the upcoming film – Americans Together,
building a cohesive America at

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