Sunday, July 14, 2013

Thank God, I am alive today - its' a new Ramadan experience for me


On Tuesday morning, the Farmers Branch paramedics team responded to my 911 call, and within 30 minutes they had me on the ER table, and the good doctors unclogged the artery and placed a stent to keep the blood flowing. Doctor Siddiqi said another 30 minutes would have been too late, and I would have gone!

It was the severe chest pain coupled with sweating that got me alarmed. I didn't want to call any one that early, but texted my friend Adil,  he was driving out of town and thanks to him for suggesting to call 911, and after debating within, I reluctantly made the call,  it was the right thing to do. If you or your loved ones were in a similar situation, please don't hesitate to call 911. 

Father Daughter
God willing, I will be active in a few days, meanwhile I ask you to strengthen your existing relationships with your loved ones. Don't know who is going to go when. Let’s be good to fellow beings and live a regret free life, at least from here forwards. I request you to forgive my shortcomings and excesses.

Thank you for your friendship.

Thanks to Yasmeen for her persistent push for me to lose weight, indeed, I owe her a big thank you for getting me down from 215# to 190#, at one time I had gone down to 179#, today I'm 189. She has set a goal of 175# for me, and I will listen to her dutifully now, and enjoy the dieted delicious foods she will be fixing for me.

One of the best things that has happened to me is the time I am getting to spend with my grown up daughter, son, daughter in law and my 15 day old grand baby Jayden. Mina, my daughter is with me for the last four days, and will be with me for another week. I did not realize she is so caring, loving and responsible to keep me on tract from medicine to food to driving me around. I am looking forward to two weeks of heaven with my kids; this is one of the biggest joys of my life. Then I will be heading to Yasmeen and spend another week or two with her before I get back to normal working, speaking and writing. 

Thanks to Dr. Amer Shakil for treating me some five years ago, and then Dr. Asifa Ijaz. I wish I had listened to them, and continued with the medication they had prescribed. If you are like me, don't act like me, please listen to your doctor.  

On Tuesday morning on July 9, cold sweat flipped me upside down.  I got up earlier than I had planned on getting up for my first suhoor (early meal to commence fasting) of Ramadan due to massive chest pain, it was early in the morning and did not want to call anyone, and I thought it would go away from aspirin... It did not. So, I reluctantly called 911.

While waiting for the ambulance, an old scene returned to my mind, way back in mid sixties, I had fallen from a tree and had recited a few verses from Qur’an (Ayatul Kursi, Fatiha, and Ikhlas) thrice in less than thirty seconds while I was unconscious (my friends told me that).  Even though I consider myself a rationalist, I still cannot figure out how I was able to recite all that in such a short period of time. Once again, on Tuesday morning, I repeated that recitation while waiting for the paramedics. 

At 11:13 PM on Monday night, I "started" the 1st day of Ramadan note and posted at, this would have been the 4th year of writing about Ramadan, everything you wanted to know about Ramadan.  Thank God, I have been able to visit every mosque of every denomination during Ramadan with a determined purpose of learning and sharing the uniqueness of each tradition with the other without prejudice. The more we know about the other, the lesser biased we would be, and subsequently free ourselves from the evil of prejudice. 

I urge every religious person of every faith, particularly the ones who are biased towards others, or the ones hung up with others to make an effort to enjoy true freedom and liberation from hate and ill will by learning about the other, until you find good positive information. 

My first Iftaar (breaking of fast) was going to be with Dr. Imam Yusuf Zia Kavakci at the Richardson Mosque. Dr Kavakci is a man I greatly respect and have consistently mentioned and written about him for the great qualities of a Muslim he is blessed with. The last time we met was about two weeks ago at Zahra Khan's funeral (my friend Adil's 19 year old angel, who is considered Shaheed, God's favorite person as she died with cancer) a week ago, Dr. Kavakci gave me a special hug, a very affectionate one like my father, and said a lot of nice things in public prior to the prayer, it meant a lot to me.  

This is my first RAMADAN in four years; I won't be able to do anything. However,  if you have an interest in learning about the spirituality, traditions and politics of Ramadan, please visit Even though I won't be fasting and visiting mosques this season, I'll still continue to write about different aspects of Ramadan. 

Thru the grace of God, I am alive today with a renewed mission to follow the teachings of my mentors; Prophet Muhammad, Jesus, Mahatma Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr. 

I am committed to do the following to the best of my ability;

1. To be the Amin - the truthful, trustworthy and an instrument of safeness to fellow Americans. 

2. To be a conflict mitigater and a goodwill nurturer 

3. To be “just" in every aspect of life 

4. To live with an open heart and an open mind towards fellow beings, 

5. To Stand up for others.

6. To work on fixing the ill practices of individuals within my religion; Islam

7. To work on fixing the ill practices of individuals within my Party; GOP

May Allah guide me to remain on the path and I appreciate your support in moving forward. Thank God, I have no religious, political or national walls between me and another individual, and it's good to be free.

The Spiritual freedom is indeed the greatest achievement in one’s life and it sticks to you. Those of us, who can free ourselves from ill-will, malice, hate, tension, pain, anxiety, apprehension, hostility, stress, strain and conflicts, are showered with blessings of peace and joy.  It is good to be free. 

Blessed are the peacemakers.

Mike Ghouse

(214) 325-1916
Mike Ghouse is a speaker, thinker and a writer on pluralismpolitics, peace, IslamIsraelIndiainterfaith, and cohesion at work and social settings. He is committed to building a Cohesive America and offers pluralistic solutions on issues of the day at Mike has a strong presence on national and local TV, Radio and Print Media. He is a frequent guest on Sean Hannity show and the O'Reilly Factor on Fox TV, and a commentator on national radio networks, he contributes weekly to the Texas Faith Column at Dallas Morning News, fortnightly at Huffington post, and several other periodicals across the world. His personal site indexes everything you want to know about him. 

Friday, July 12, 2013

Photos of Ramadan 2013

Monday, July 8, 2013

Ramadan day 1, Tuesday - Richardson Mosque

Ramadan Day 1, Tuesday, July 9, 2013 | Ramadan 2, 1434 
Richardson Mosque
811 Abrams Road, Richardson, TX 75080
(972) 231-5698

Imam: Dr. Imam Zia Kavakci

2013 Ramadan - Join us to visit a Mosque a day, and every denomination

My fasting and my prayers are my business, and I am accountable for my own actions and not others', none whatsoever.  Here is my schedule for Ramadan this year, the fourth year with an intention to visit every possible Mosque and every possible denomination.However, to encourage understanding of others, I am writing this Blog with the intent of developing Intra-faith relationships. Each one of our denomination sticks to its own folks, and that is just fine, but unless we know about each other, we will always live in myths, distrust, and fear of others, other Muslims in this case. 

Islamophobia is a great example, Muslims know very well that the Neocon fears have no basis, but they simply get hyped up. Phobias do exist, and that is what makes them say stupid things. Aren't Muslims guilty of the same?

The rifts created by a few religious leaders among different Muslim denomination is disgusting, do we need to continue to subscribe to it or cut it out, right now?

If the leaders cannot unite us for doing good, they should not divide us either. Look at the non-sense propagated between Shia, Sunni, Ahmadiyya and others... 

Knowing each other does not imply that you  jump in and do what others do, or denigrate their others practices, it simply means you learn about others and accept them as they are. 

God has created each one of us and asks us know and learn about each other. Knowledge leads to understanding and understanding to acceptance of a different point of view and respecting the otherness of other amounts to honoring God, for it is he who created diversity intentionally. Indeed, knowing each other mitigates conflicts and nurtures goodwill resulting in peaceful societies. (Reference Quraan 49:13).

True fasting is self-purification; and from this, a rich inner life brings about values such as justice, generosity, patience, kindness, forgiveness, mercy and empathy - values that are indispensable for the success of the community.Consciousness of behavior and vigilance over action are the most profound dimensions of fasting: the fasting of the heart focuses on the attachment to the divine.

That is when Ramadan really becomes a source of peace and solace, just as Christmas goes beyond the rituals to bring forth kindness, charity and caring. For fasting to be truly universal, its benefits must extend beyond the fraternal ties of Muslims and must extend to forging a common humanity with others. Fasting is meant to impart a sense of what it means to be truly human, and its universality is reflected by its observance in Bahai, Buddhist, Christian, Hindu, Jain, Jewish, Sikh, Wiccan, Zoroastrian, other faiths and importantly the native traditions.

This year again,  Insha Allah I will visit different Mosques. Mind you, each mosque within each denomination has slightly different practices, we have to have a big heart to respect their practices, if not what is the difference between you, me and a bigot? 

Alhamdu Lillah, I have been blessed to pray in all the three holy place of Muslims; Mecca, Medina and Aqsa, as well as the dome of the rock, and am looking forward, Insha Allah to visit all the holy Places of Muslims (not necessarily Islam, the religion).

You are welcome to join me by texting or talking at (214) 325-1916, at least an hour before iftaar, as I intend to shut down the phone.


01. Tuesday, July 9 | 5:07 AM - 8:38 PM - Richardson Mosque
02. Wednesday, July 10 | 5:07 AM - 8:38 PM  
03. Thursday, July 11 | 5:08 AM - 8:37 PM
04. Friday, July 12 | 5:08 AM - 8:37 PM - 
05. Saturday, July 13 | 5:09 AM - 8:37 PM
06. Sunday, July 14 | 5:10 AM - 8:36 PM


Welcome to Ramadan, this column is about the politics, traditions and the spirit of Ramadan.

Today is the first day of Ramadan, the 9th month in the Muslim Hijri (Migration) Calendar, which began with the Muslim exodus from Mecca to the city of Madinah.

Ramadan is one of the 12 months of lunar calendar with 354.37 days in a year, as opposed to the Solar Calendar with 364+days.  However, every 33 years, the the Solar and Lunar Calendar coincide on the same day. 

Like the Jewish and Hindu Festivals, Muslim festivals are based on lunar calendar, and usually begin 11 days earlier each successive year, as the lunar year has 354.37 days, roughly 11 days less than the Solar Calendar. It will take six more years for Ramadan to occur in Spring time, right now the fasting will be long for more than 14 hours a day without any intake in the body. 

Ramadan should not be understood by Muslims alone, it is an observance that all can relate with. I  have put together different thoughts about Ramadan from an universal perspective, so our Hindu, Jewish, Christian, Zoroastrian, Bahai, Buddhist, Native Americans, Jain, Sikh and other  members of the family of faiths can relate with. Even those friends who do not believe in God, can at least get an idea about Ramadan, so, together we can create societies where we know each other,  and with that fewer conflicts and greater goodwill to sustain for all of us.

What does God want from us?

Like a mother who wants her children to live well, like a teacher who wants his students to do well, and like a chef who wants his patrons to enjoy his food…. God wants every one of his creation to live in harmony and do well.  

No one is deprived of God’s love; he has reached every human through a peace maker, messenger, prophet, reformer or simply a wise man or a good friend that brings sense to living. The creator offers a variety of guidance to the mankind, no matter where you live, the guidance is there, the guidance that leads to live in peace, and without fear of the other.

Religion is a beautiful instrument that God guides us through, and there are many of them, at least 250 traditions including a dozen major ones. Each tradition does well for the believer in bringing peace to oneself.

Today, the one tradition I am talking about is Islam, and one of its beautiful aspects that helps build cohesive societies is the month of Ramadan.

Ramadan Cohesion
May this Ramadan bring blessings to humanity, Amen! It is time for us to begin addressing the unity within the Muslim community and with the communities of the world for building cohesive societies, where no human has to live in apprehension or fear of the other. Let's start cleaning our hearts from prejudice and judgment against our own and everyone else. If the self appointed guardians of Islam cannot unite us to do good for humanity, let them not divide us either. Let there be no politics in religion. Let us fulfill a major task God assigns to humanity, the best among you is the one who knows each other and cares for the other. 

For the last 4 years, I have been chronicling Ramadan Daily - iftar a Masjid, visiting every denomination of Muslims without prejudice.

More about it at

Ramadan Mubarak

Welcome to Ramadan, it begins today, July 9th, 2013. It is the month of fasting, a month of learning about others, connecting with others, developing empathy with fellow beings and above all reaching new heights in piety and spirituality,  Taqwa as it is called. It is to become closer to God and emulate his qualities of unselfishness, forgiveness and love. It is a month of practicing service to fellow beings and developing self discipline to learn to live they way we want, and being conscious of every moment of the day for 30 days.  

The Politics of Ramadan at Washington Post

Politics plays a crucial role in our Temples, Synagogues or Churches, Mosques are no different. A few scientifically-inclined-Muslims have adopted NASA’s calculations believed to be precise. However, four different traditions are operating concurrently; i) Strictly Calendar, ii) NASA and iii) Sighting with bare eyes and iv) sighting by others in the community.

Muslims around the world will begin fasting from Tuesday, July 9th, and for a whole month thereafter, however, for some of them it will begin (only) if the moon is sighted. The story is same with the Jewish and other traditions that follow lunar calendar. Rosh Hashanah like Ramadan comes 11 or 12 days earlier each successive year. Continued at -

The Spirit of Ramadan at Huffington Post

The spiritual masters have captured the human gravity towards rituals and have molded it with the art and science of self-discipline in their respective religions. The noble purpose of each one of them was to bring a balance in our lives and a balance with our environment.
Every faith is composed of a set of unique rituals to bring discipline and peace to human life. Fasting is one of the five key rituals that Muslims around the world observe. Rituals signify the milestones of our daily life. Every significant moment of the day is a ritual. It is an unwritten way of measuring our progression, a memory pattern to bring discipline to our actions. Continued

The Traditions of Ramadan at Ramadan Exclusive

its celebration time when Muslims around the world anxiously wait for the first moon of the ninth Lunar month to appear on the sky. The families gather in their backyards, or get on the nearest hillock or climb on the top of their homes and wait for the pencil thin moon to appear on the horizon, and when it does, jubilation begins. Continued at:

Welcome to Ramadan at Ramadan Exclusive

Insha’Allah, the first day of Ramadan will begin on Tuesday, July 09, 2013 and Eid al-Fitr on Sunday, August 19, 2012 per the announcement from ISNA. Continued at:

Quraan says, had God willed, he would have made every one of us alike - then he says, he chose to make us into different tribes and nations from the same couple (or the same source). Then he goes on to challenge us to know each other - he knows that our conflicts stem from not knowing each other, and living with misinformation about others,  when we know each other,  conflicts fade and solutions will emerge.

Every religion means peace and Justice and that is acceptable to God. He says, you need not worry who you are, as long as you take care of your neighbor, I will recompense you. Each one of us is responsible for our Karma.

He concludes ( Quraan 49:13) that the best among us is the one who knows each other, learns about each other and respects each other. If we take the time, to learn, every religion is out there to bring goodness to humanity.

Be good to yourselves and every one around you. Happy Ramadan.

Mike Ghouse is committed to nurturing the pluralistic values of Islam and welcomes everyone to explore and several related sites listed at and