Muslims remember the Prophet as having taught us: “Die before you die.” It is a paradoxical statement, with two deaths. And a luminous life in the middle.
I am not questioning the Mayor’s solidarity with children of Israel. We as human beings are called to identify with the pain and suffering of fellow human beings. What I wonder is the selectivity: why visit only children of Israel, and not the children of Palestine?
The assault on museums and libraries sadly has far too frequent echoes: from the destruction of the Iraqi national museum, from the Serbian assault on Sarajevo’s library, and from the Islamist attack on manuscript collections in Mali. This is a hatred of arts, of beauty, of knowledge, of our collective human wisdom.
Here are seven quotes from Martin that are helpful to recall Martin the prophet, Martin the radical activist of love-and-justice, and to help us move beyond the myth of the sanitized Martin.
To celebrate the Prophet Muhammad’s birthday, here is a short poem from Rumi, honoring the Prophet as the Mother of the Path of Love:
“Love is the path of my Prophet…. This love gave birth to me!”
Occupying people, destroying homes, participating in massacres in Shatila and Sabra (Sharon, 1982) are not the sign of “strength.” These are the marks of brutality. Brutality and strength must never be confused.
Through honoring and celebrating the sacrifice of Aitzaz Hussain, I wonder about a world in which heroism is intertwined with death, as opposed to being measured in the small, mundane acts of goodness and beauty by, among and for the living.
They warn of how in so many parts of the country human flesh is not intended to stay exposed to this cold for more than 5 minutes. I also wonder why we fail to show the same concern for exposure of the human heart to brutal cold. There is a cold that is not from the arctic, but rather from the frozen realm of coldness, of distance, of isolation.