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Over the last ten years, four Muslims have been Nobel Peace Prize Laureates – two women, and two men. Just last year (2011), the prize was awarded to three women, “for their non-violent struggle for the safety of women and for women’s rights to full participation in peace-building work”: the Liberian President, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf; her younger compatriot, Leymah Gbowee;…
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Concluding this three-part series, I remind you of my purpose: “in the spirit of religious dialog, I am proposing Muslims join Christians in a new reading of Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount” in order to highlight practical peacemaking strategies. Our main finding was that Jesus proposed (and led by example) “transforming initiatives” – bold actions stemming from a forgiving heart…
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Before I get to the third and last installment of this series on Jesus as the sunna (“way,” or “example”) of peace, here is some research on the Sermon on the Mount I’ve found very helpful. I write this with both trepidation and excitement, as events continue to unfold in places like Syria and Yemen, where students and ordinary people…
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In the earliest documents of the Islamic community, we find that the word sunna (the path, or the example of a tribal leader in seventh-century Arabia) was applied to the new religious leaders – Muhammad, of course, but also the first caliphs (or successors) like Abu Bakr, Umar, Uthman and Ali, and even governors of far-flung provinces. Within a century…