“He could not recall the honor of being on stage with one of the icons of American life, but could remember to deny part of America’s story,” said Hussein Rashid, founder of islamicate, a consultancy focusing on religious literacy. “With his depth of understanding of religion, and the company he keeps, I fully expect him to honor the Ku Klux Klan as representatives of Christianity during his Christmas message.”
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 9th year I am inviting people to tweet the Qur’an for Ramadan. I will be tweeting @islamoyankee.
To see how the call has (not) evolved, here are the six call outs:
2010 (despite the title, which says 2011)
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:
- Anyone is welcome. You do not have to be Muslim.
- 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.
- 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.
- Include chapter and verse numbers using "Arabic" numerals, eg. 1:1, 33:72, etc.
- 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.
- You should feel free to offer commentary on why you chose that verse. If you know some tafsir, please include as well, if relevant.
- Tags: please include #ttQuran .
- 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.
This year, I plan on using:
Baccalaureate Celebration. Seniors play a significant role in this multifaith gathering that includes music, readings, dance and an address by Hussein Rashid, a community preacher and faculty member in the Barnard College Department of Religion. Johnson Chapel.
“Hajj: The Pilgrimage”
by Hussein Rashid
This chapter takes us on a journey to Mecca, site of the hajj, or annual pilgrimage. Hussein Rashid depicts this often once-in-a-lifetime experience for several Muslim Americans who represent a wide variety of ethnic, racial, and sectarian backgrounds. We learn about the pilgrimages of Khizer, a health care professional from Washington, D.C.; Zahra, an attorney from California; Debra, a college professor from Wisconsin; Suehaila, a professional recruiter from Dearborn, Michigan; and other Muslim Americans. They walk counter-clockwise around the Ka‘ba; pray outside Mecca at Mina and Mt. Arafat; reenact Hagar’s desperate search for water; and symbolically stone the devil, among other rites. In addition to giving essential background on each of these practices, Rashid asks these pilgrims what all these rituals mean to them and what they hope to gain by coming on hajj. As a result, we come to know not only about the logistical problems and gripes of pilgrims, but also about the failed relationships that led a couple of the pilgrims to seek solace or healing in Mecca in the first place.
“As a Muslim, I’d vote for Jesus, but the Republicans won’t let him in, and the Democrats don’t believe in him,” said Hussein Rashid, a professor of religion at Barnard College, who concedes that he’s a tad bitter about his political options.
As a Muslim, when I hear about prison, I think to the Story of Joseph, told in Chapter 12 of the Qur’an: are we punishing difference, rather than actions, and putting the innocent in jail? Do we seek to turn people to repentance, or are we fulfilling our needs for revenge? One of the clear commandments in the Qur’an is to maintain the balance of justice, and to not give into our own desires and call it justice (55:9, 4:135). We are warned that we can easily corrupt society in the name of public good (2:11). The Qur’an seems to be warning us against our prison industrial complex, exemplified by Rikers Island Jail.
The Roles of Arts & Culture in Addressing Islamophobia direct link to my video is here.
G?d Talk Potluck Shabbat Dinner: “Hospitality” from Muslim, Jewish and Christian Perspectives
Friday, May 12th, after services, 8:15PM, but you MUST register Led by Rev. Eleanor, Rabbi Jill Hammer, and guests Dr. Hussein Rashid and Rebekah Forni
Tonight we explore the topic of “Hospitality” from biblical, theological and social perspectives with speakers from Muslim, Jewish, and Christian traditions, including Dr. Hussein Rashid, Rebekah Forni, and Rabbi Jill Hammer.