Our mission is to encourage individuals to develop an open mind and
an open heart toward their fellow beings. If we can learn to respect
the otherness of other and accept the genetic uniqueness of each one
of us, then conflicts fade and solutions emerge.
What is Pluralism
it is respecting the otherness of the other and accepting the
uniqueness of each one of us. In cultural terms, it is recognizing
your culture as a beautiful expression of life to you, as my own is
to me. When it comes to food, it is appreciating the well done steak
you enjoy over the medium rare I delight, or vice-versa.
Religiously, it is learning to honor the way your worship or bow to
the creator in gratitude, is as divine as my own.
The need for
By the end of 2020, there will not be a major city in
America, and perhaps in the world, where you will not find people of
different faiths, cultures, ethnicities, races, nationalities and
social backgrounds working, eating, playing, marrying, and doing
We need to prepare ourselves for those eventualities to prevent
possible conflicts and lay a good foundation for nurturing goodwill
and effective functioning of the societies. Exclusive communities
will become a thing of the past.
Pluralism is our future
Pluralism is our future, and as a futurist, based on the trends, I
foresee, that two generations from now, we would be comfortable in
saying, my religion, culture or life style is one of the many
choices, and further down the road, a significant number will
proclaim that my way of life is not superior or inferior to any.
They will consider claiming superiority would be sheer arrogance and
religion (a major part of life to many) is believed to imbue
humility that builds societies, communities and nations in creating
that elusive kingdom of heaven where all live their lives without
apprehension or fear of the other.
American Religious Landscape
We are one nation under God, indivisible with liberty
and justice for all. We are represented by every race, nationality,
ethnicity, language, culture and religion. We see God as one, none
and many and in every form; male, female, genderless and
non-existent, being and non-being, nameless and with innumerable
names. Indeed, we must preserve the pluralistic heritage of America.
Texas Faith Panel,
Dallas Morning News. Mr. Ghouse is a member of the Panel and writes
about interfaith issues facing the nation every week. He has written
close to100 pieces over the last two years and almost every column
he writes, weaves through the essence of many religions.
Post; Mike has written over 40 articles in the last two years.
Occasionally his articles have been published at Washington Post and
several national and international periodicals including Arab News,
Tehran Times, Jakarta post and others.
Google: Mike has
consistently remained on the first page when you search for
Pluralism Speaker, Interfaith speaker and Muslim Speaker, whether it
is the text or the images.
Blog: 318 Articles
were written on his blog in 2011 and over a 100 of them were
published in the Newspapers and periodicals. Mike has written an
average of 150 pieces a year over the last several years. Most of
the columns were on interfaith/pluralism, over a range of 10
articles, almost every religion would have been mentioned.
Interfaith workshops: 78 hours of live workshops from
Understanding Atheism to Zoroastrianism and every religion in
between were conducted between 2005 and 2007.
Radio shows: Mike hosted 520 Hours of radio talk
shows on “Understanding the essence of religions, each beautiful
religion” with a representative of the respective faith 5 days a
week on AM Radio 1150 in Dallas between 2003 and 2005.
Festivals of the
World – The essence of major festivals of all religions were written
up since 1993 in Asian American Journal, followed by Asian News
Radio and the blogs, websites and the newspapers.
interfaith flows in Mike’s veins. Even the tribute he wrote about
his late wife, father, and mother were soaked with the essence of
“Americans together, building a cohesive America” will be out by
July this year and the next book, Muslims in America is poised to
make it on his 61st birthday.
A documentary “Americans
Together” is in the making; and it will present the full
spectrum of American diversity, laden with programs and ideas on
building a cohesive America, where no American has to live in
discomfort, apprehension or fear of the other.
Blogger: Mike passionately writes on topics including
but not limited to; Hate Sermons, Sharia Laws, Holocaust and
Genocides, Ground Zero Mosque, Peter King Hearings, Quraan,
Terrorism counter, Ramadan, International conflicts, Islam,
Blasphemy, India, Media Muddles, and Israel-Palestine.
speaker: Mike has spoken at international forums including the
Council for a Parliament of the World’s Religions in Melbourne,
Australia; the Middle East Peace Initiative in Jerusalem; and the
International Leadership Conference in Hawaii, Chicago and
Standing up for others, Mike lives what he preaches.
In the blog standing up for others, he has set an example of
standing up for almost every representation of Americans. Standing
up for others is the right thing to do, every human goes through a
period of invincibility to vulnerability, if we don't stand up for
those who are susceptible, then who will stand up for us when we are
TV/Radio - Mike is
a frequent guest on Fox News, “The Hannity Show”, and on nationally
syndicated shows including Dallas TV, print and radio networks, and
occasional on NPR
Unity Day USA is a main stream event commemorating 9/11
for seven years. It is a purposeful event to bring Americans
together. The UNITY DAY USA has become a symbol of unity among
Americans. It is an initiative to come together to stand up for
the safety, security and cohesiveness of America. Every year we
recognize five individuals who have made a difference in their
communities, the trophy calls them pluralists in their field.
9/11 – Mike
was on Radio from 10:00 AM till 4:30 on Tuesday, September 11,
2001 trying to make sense out of the chaos, he reached out to
Mayors and community leaders to forge a common voice. Mike was a
catalyst in commencing interfaith prayers, fund raising and
blood donations that day. He pledged to serve the nation every
year on that day, and Unity Day USA is the product of that
Holocaust and Genocides event has continued for the last five
years. We have learned to acknowledge and reflect upon the
terrible things we have inflicted upon each other and have
committed ourselves to resist the temptations to be prejudiced
and stereotype others. We cannot demand peace unless we are
peaceful ourselves. Our safety hinges on the safety of others
around us, and it behooves us to work for the safety and
security of others on this little planet. We have to be
continuously aware of the Holocaust and Genocides and prepare to
say never again.
Thanksgiving Celebrations & Awards night was carried out for
over ten years and due to overlapping of Unity Day, it is done
on a small scale now. The purpose of celebrating this event is
to thank God for helping us learn to accept, respect and
appreciate each other’s cultural uniqueness.
We are inspired by
many a spiritual masters. Martin Luther King Jr. is one of Mike's
mentors, "Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice, whatever
affects one directly affects all indirectly".
The Native American Chief Seattle said we are merely a strand in
this World Wide Web; if we mess one, we mess the others. Prophet
Muhammad’s said when you see injustice, the least you can do is to
speak up. Mike's Grandfather and his father also inspired him to be
– Mr. Fred Phelps is one of the famous Anti-Semitic Pastors from
Kansas, he was protesting in front of the Dallas Holocaust Museum,
Texas Jewish Post, Akiba Academy, Synagogues, St. Mary's Guadalupe
and the GLBT church. Mike was there standing with the Jews,
immigrants and Catholics, believing that we need to stand up
together. He pulled the Holocaust Survivors together in the Museum
and prayed for the well being of all.
Reforms Rally - Mike joined the Lulac to March in downtown with the
community and Spanish leaders to demand immigration reforms, where
he gave one of his famous speeches “Standing up for others” at
Dallas City Hall to a gathering of 8000.
protest at Farmers Branch: When the City undertook to undermine the
Federal Government on undocumented aliens, Mike was there walking
with the group to Mayor's office. Dallas Morning News printed Mike's
picture on the top front page, which was repeated in 200 dailies
across Latin America producing a barrage of hate mail.
Protest: In December 2009, during Gaza Siege, Mike represented
Dallas Peace Center as a director at the Grassy Knoll, Downtown
Dallas where JFK was shot. There was a Jewish man having arguments
with a few Palestinians, the police was chasing him for causing
distress, Mike stood up for him against the police demand to leave,
and when they decided to arrest him, the other guy walked away and
they backed off.
Massacre: Nearly 1000 Indian Muslims were massacred in the mayhem in
Gujarat; Mike organized a Rally in protest held in downtown at the
Rally: Participated in Anti-War rallies down town Dallas several
March - World War II witnessed the massacre of Gays and the march
was organized in Oak Lawn which Mike participated. He also
participated in the South Dallas aids walk.
Walk and the Partnership Walk, an Annual event since 2009 and 2000
has also written petitions, called on people and wrote about the
mistreatment of Atheists, Baha’i, Buddhist, Christian, Hindus,
Jains, Jews, Pagans, Sikhs, Wicca, Native Americans, Zoroastrians
and of course Muslims around the world.
Visitation Programs – Every year civil and religious leadership from
Middle East and North Africa visits the United States, and
invariably, I have the pleasure of meeting with them to talk about
interfaith movements and Pluralism in America.