A Life of Reinvention – Malcolm X: Book review

  Is America a ‘melting pot’ today? Has Martin Luther King’s dream of a post-racial society come true? Or are we still closer to the America that Malcom X saw, one that is segregated, racist and inherently unequal? While the answers to these are not simple and certainly not easy, looking closely at the inequality… Continue reading A Life of Reinvention – Malcolm X: Book review

Religion in the Public Sphere – Good, Bad or Ugly?

  With Christmas, ‘War on Christmas’ and ‘Creeping Shariah’ dominating our headlines, it looks like religion is making a comeback in  public discourse. Unfortunately, it seems to be for the wrong reasons – barring the Pope’s recent gestures of reconciliation with homosexuals and other minorities. But that doesn’t stop his critics from painting him as… Continue reading Religion in the Public Sphere – Good, Bad or Ugly?

New Year Resolution: Top 12 books for Charity and Philanthropy

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Keeping up the tradition of recommending books to read in the upcoming New Year, here is my list of top twelve books for 2014– all focused on Charity and Philanthropy. For starters, the two words don’t mean the same. Hopefully, by the time you are done with the 12 books, you will know the difference.… Continue reading New Year Resolution: Top 12 books for Charity and Philanthropy

Do we really need nonprofits in America? : Five arguments for the sector’s existence

  Are nonprofit organizations redundant? Can the for-profit sector solve all our problems and usher in a world where poverty, disease and deprivation are things of the past? I read an article on the Forbes website yesterday that argued for dismantling of the nonprofit sector. This piece by Mr. Freedman sought to show, using two… Continue reading Do we really need nonprofits in America? : Five arguments for the sector’s existence

Book Review: Thomas Jefferson’s Qur’an by Denise A. Spellberg

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If the only thing you learn from this book is that the founding fathers had the wisdom to use Islam as a test case, to set the limits of tolerance in America, then that’d be sufficient. Denise Spellberg: Thomas Jefferson’s Qur’an is a well-researched book, that locates the debates during the time (and before) Jefferson… Continue reading Book Review: Thomas Jefferson’s Qur’an by Denise A. Spellberg

What is the role of religion in philanthropic giving?

A report I read recently claimed that British Muslims are more generous than all other faith communities in the U.K. The report said: “Followers of Islam gave an average of $567 compared to Jewish givers who donated around $412, according to the survey of just over 4,000 people in the U.K. Christians gave considerably less.… Continue reading What is the role of religion in philanthropic giving?

Interfaith work and Philanthropy – a faith-based revolution or a pragmatic innovation?

“ We did not hear the term “Abrahamic faiths,” until about ten years ago. This term is not only a great leap forward in terms of interfaith work, but also a radical shift in how people are looking at each other’s faith,” said William Enright, the Director of Lake Institute for Faith and Giving, Indianapolis.… Continue reading Interfaith work and Philanthropy – a faith-based revolution or a pragmatic innovation?

If you are university educated, be sure to thank the 11th century Iranians! – Conversations in philanthropy #7

If you are college educated, have attended a traditional university, as we know it; anywhere in the world – then inadvertently you have benefited from a system that was pioneered in Iran in the 10th and 11th century, as part of the system of  Islamic Philanthropy, i.e., the Waqf, or endowment (Arjomand 114). While it… Continue reading If you are university educated, be sure to thank the 11th century Iranians! – Conversations in philanthropy #7

Rambam’s reminder during Ramadhan – Conversations in Philanthropy # 2

Rabbi Maimonides, or Rambam as he is popularly known was one of the foremost Jewish scholar, who lived in Islamic Spain in the 13th century. He was born in Cordoba, present day Spain, during the Almoravid Empire in 11135 AD and died in Egypt in December 1204. He was a Rabbi, preacher, physician. Rambam is… Continue reading Rambam’s reminder during Ramadhan – Conversations in Philanthropy # 2