July 4, 2012
“…eloquence and brevity…”
Spirituality and Practice
By Frederic and Mary Ann Brussat
Moving the Mountain: Beyond Ground Zero to a New Vision of Islam in America
Feisel Abdul Rauf
Free Press 05/12 Hardcover $24.00
Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf, founder and CEO of the Cordoba Initiative, has served as imam of the al-Farah mosque since 1983 and is the visionary behind the Cordoba House (the so-called Ground Zero Mosque) which aroused so much controversy and revealed the breadth of hatred and misunderstanding of Muslims in America. He is the author of What’s Right with Islam, where he pointed out the common ground between Islam and American appreciation for liberty, equality, and fraternity, arguing that it is time for Muslims, Christians, and Jews to work together to demonstrate what a “good society can look like.”
Imam Feisal calls himself, like the majority of Muslims in the world, an orthodox Muslim who is “mainstream, moderate, and nonviolent.” He was born in Kuwait of Egyptian parents, educated in England and Malaysia, and became a U. S. citizen in1979. He earned a degree in physics from Columbia University.
With eloquence and brevity, Imam Feisal discusses the rise of Islamic fundamentalism, the position of modern American Muslim woman, the source of all the trouble in conjunction with the proposed intercultural center at Ground Zero, and the relationship between Shariah law and democracy.
At the end of his reflections on the fight against extremism, Imam Feisal refers to the Quran: “Repel evil with what is better until the one whom you have enmity with is transformed into a passionate friend.”
The author salutes the United States for its robust multifaith efforts and then praises American Muslims for “helping lead the way toward reclaiming their religion, playing an essential role in creating a more tolerant and just twenty-first century America — and world.”