Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Purpose

To provide the DFW Muslim community with:

  • Relevant, significant news
  • Educational resources for adults and youth
  • A communications forum for the DFW community
  • A focal point for building activist groups and connecting with existing movements

Sources

Only reliable, authentic sources are used.  Most of our sources are leading providers of news and education in the various, related sciences.  Careful attention is paid to the qualifications of our providers, and journalistic integrity.

The Islam Forward Agenda

Islam is Based on Iman (Loyal Faith) and ‘Amaal (Righteous Actions)

“Except for those who have believed and enacted righteousness deeds and exhort each other to truth and exhort each other to patience.”

Enacting Righteousness Includes Removing Harm

“Faith has over seventy branches or over sixty branches, the most excellent of which is the declaration that there is no god but Allah, and the humblest of which is the, removal of what is injurious from the path: and modesty is the branch of faith.”

Removing everything harmful is one of the 5 basic Principles of Islam.

“Harm must be removed.”

Correcting Impropriety is a Basic, Required Principle

“It is obligatory to make masalaha (correction) of whatever is mafsada (broken, improper, imbalanced)

It becomes obligatory to enact maslaha in all matters that threaten the daruriyyaat and hajiyyaat of the people.  These are the indispensable and required matters in life.

The Five Primary Objectives of Islam

Islamic Law has Five Primary Objectives.  They are the protection and preservation of:

  1. Deen
  2. Life
  3. Intellectual and Emotional well-being
  4. Children and Family
  5. Material Resources

The Continuation and Well-being of Humanity is Severely Threatened

And so the primary agenda of the Islam Forward project is to build awareness, intelligence, and a collective response to significant matters, including the following:

  • Transitioning away from the rapacious and destructive economy of egocentric capitalism, toward a system that ensures responsibility toward humans, the ecosystem, and our limited resources
  • Pushing forward to address the global climate emergency.  We have less than 5 years to enact systems independent of fossil-fuels.  Basically, we must completely retool our economic/production systems, transportation, and energy.
  • Ending the constant wars of capitalism which will continue targeting Muslim lands
  • Ending starvation.  Currently, 30,000 humans die daily of starvation.
  • Moving forward with more democratic, equitable systems of governance/public administration.  The US has become a failed republic.  It no longer maintains the basic requirements of equitable society.
  • Education:  it has been known for over 100 years that US education is very poor quality.  Today, it is much worse, as corporations take-over the public schools.  This project is a People’s Education concept, in which local residents provide their own educational resources, as we try to restore public education.
  • Developing political IQ.  This is extremely important in large-scale, high-stakes societies like the world has become.  People need minimal understanding of economics, democracy, and the human sciences in order to be functional citizens.
  • News and Communications:  the Muslim community in DFW has roughly 300,000 members, yet we have no mass communication system.
  • A Public-policy think-tank.  The ability to conduct research, formulate policy, and engage socially and politically as intelligent, moral Muslims.
  • To address/resolve racism, xenophobia, and the institutions causing division and animosity between human beings
  • Promoting proper support, establishment, well-being, and advancement for Islam’s Converts.  This is the very highest priority in Islam, yet the DFW Muslim community has never begun to appropriately address the needs of Converts.
  • ACTIVISM – Islam is based on responsible actions, guided by moral principles, to effect positive changes in society.

How Islam Forward Escapes Islamophobia and Islamophilia | Nazia Kazi | TED

The Importance of People’s News and Education

Among humans are those who create problems, those who perpetuate problems once created, those who ignore problems or are oblivious to them, those who misunderstand the causes of problems, and those who seek rectification.  The latter of these is the socially-conscious, responsible, intelligent, ethical human.

We live in a time of large population, in which mistakes or corruption in public policy or public opinion have negative effects on large numbers of people.  In open, democratic society, the most powerful force in determining public policy is the human collective itself.  While the effects of public policy are always felt by the citizenry, not by those who form or enact harmful policies.

American citizens are perpetuating a long list of catastrophes by two significant failures:

  1. failing to engage morally and intelligently in the political process
  2. continuing to live and act daily in promoting and feeding the very systems and policies that are creating our disasters

Though Americans have the power to change policies, habits, and institutions for the better, we have been failing to do so.  The primary causes of this are the systemic failures of our education systems, and media blackout in matters that the public should understand and engage.  The only opinions and policies enacted through the political process are those of the bad policy-makers who have been contributing to our decline and destruction.

Throughout history, when such situations occurred, it was the duty of the citizenry to inform, educate, and motivate one another to create social revolution, in order to replace bad policy and policy-makers with a better sort.

And so, the tag-line for this site:

Learn by Sharing

Grow by Investing

Progress by Acting

About the Editor: Mustafa Howard

Relevant, Brief Facts about Mustafa Howard

  • Born in 1967, Norman OK
  • Graduated Norman High School, 1985 with Merit Scholarships, University-level Mathematics honors
  • Entered the University of Oklahoma Engineering School.
  • Entered Islam, 1987, one of the earliest Caucasian-American male converts in this region of the US.  When I moved to DFW as a Muslim, there were only 4 masajid in the metroplex.
  • 3 years of travel learning Islam, including Pakistan, India, and later, Jordan
  • 7 years of Tableegh work, internationally
  • Completed University studies at UTA, Business Administration and Economics, graduating with honors.
  • 7 years experience, including American Airlines/SABRE as software developer, data modeler, and organizational structures and process modeling
  • Have learned enough Arabic to be fluent in Qur’an and Hadeeth and to study Islamic texts independently
  • Have completed extensive, independent studies in Fiqh, Usuul, Maqasid, ‘Aqeedah, Kalaam, Islamic and Western Philosophy, Economics and the Critiques of Capitalism, and various aspects of Social and Political Theory
  • Developed the only Comprehensive Convert-Support program in modern times
  • Have developed the concept of Community Contract/Charter for large Muslim communities in non-Muslim lands
  • Islam Forward is a program in development since 2012.  It includes cutting-edge concepts of social-organization theory for Muslim communities, a new field of Da’wah based on interaction with progressive political movements in The West, the emerging need for revitalizing Islamic intelligence by combining Islamic knowledge with proficiency in humanitarian, social, economic, and political studies within the Western mind, and Muslim activism based on applying basic Islamic values and principles to the current challenges of human civilization.

Reviews from students:

I am enjoying the class immensely! I am learning things that I wasn’t taught or haven’t learned in the past 14 years.

– Sarah

This class had helped me more in 4 weeks than any other class I have ever taken.(in 17 years)  – Local Muslim (identity protected)

A few photos

taken at a filming of one of my presentations on Islam and Activism
taken at a filming of one of my presentations on Islam and Activism
at a Conference at ICI
at a Conference at ICI
The Fest Friend in the World
The Best Friend in the World

A Comical Story of an Old Man Who Was Once a Young Muslim Convert

Me with Son-in-Law and my 2 step-sons
Me with Son-in-Law and my 2 step-sons
Dad, Brother, myself
Dad, Brother, myself

At a 2014 protest against the Israeli assault on GazaAt a 2014 protest against the Israeli assault on Gaza

Filming with Mohamed al-Darsani and Wafid Ahdali
Filming with Mohamed al-Darsani and Wafid Ahdali
A rally speech during Occupy Wall Street
A rally speech during Occupy Wall Street
Me, the Carpenter, building a toy bench for my nephew
Me, the Carpenter, building a toy bench for my nephew
Me at March Against Monsanto
Me at March Against Monsanto