The relentless chaos in the Middle East


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“Anything you can do, I can do better. I can do anything better than you. No, you can’t. Yes, I can. No, you can’t. Yes, I can…” Though only some know the Broadway musical to which these charmingly obnoxious lyrics belong, all of us are undeniably accustomed to such immature vanity. The real life repercussions of this age-old feud, however, are not so amusing.

Take, for example, the relentless chaos in the Middle East between Israel and Gaza. Naturally, we empathize witnessing the barbaric bloodshed and abiding destruction from the comfort of our homes, but who’s actually doing something about it? But, what can we do you ask? I’ll let you figure that out. Nevertheless, As a Muslim Ahmaderican (Ahmadi – American) who believes in both Messiahs, Jesus and Ahmad (p.b.u.t), I urge my dear compatriots not to rally biasedly against Israel or Palestine encouraging hate and bringing the unrest home. Rally, rather, against fighting itself! I beg you to stop the futile brawling by seeking relief through “gentle patience and heartfelt prayers” (Quran 2:46). We would live in a far better world If only we would discharge my community’s enlightening formula; “Love for all, hatred for none”.

By the way, do you know what month we’re in? November, of course, but we’re also in the Jewish month of Kislev and the Islamic month of Muharram. In November Americans celebrate Thanksgiving on the fourth Thursday. The Jewish month Kislev from Hebrew means “thickened” and “positive hope”. Muharram from Arabic means “unlawful” because fighting is prohibited as it is one of the four sacred months in Islam.

Mixing these diverse meanings together we concoct a shared ethos especially vibrant in this time of year; let’s express true thanks through sanctifying righteous hope, the hope that loathe between siblings under God will end at last!


-Zahir Muhammad Mannan

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Zahir Muhammad Mannan

Zahir Mannan is the Head Teacher and Administrative Associate at the Early Learning Program, Inc. at Central Connecticut State University, and a previous Associate Research Scientist at Yale University School of Medicine. He leads a weekly Holy Quran study group at Baitul Aman "House of Peace" Mosque in Meriden, CT, where he also teaches an advanced Holy Quran class for Tahir Academy. He has served the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community in diverse capacities including national follow-up coordinator for 1-800-WHY-ISLAM, local Youth President, local Interfaith Outreach Director, local Holy Quran Education and Temporary Devotion Director, and local Youth Publication Director.

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