Ramadan Mubarak (“May God give you a Blessed Month”) رمضان مبارك to all Muslims!

Ramadan Mubarak (“May God give you a blessed month”) on June 6thm 2016 or in Arabic this would be رمضان مبارك

The time for Ramadan is set by the lunar cycle and so is different each year.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia:

1Chapter 2, Revelation 185, of the Quran states: “The month of Ramadan is that in which was revealed the Quran; a guidance for mankind, and clear proofs of the guidance, and the criterion (of right and wrong). And whosoever of you is present, let him fast the month, and whosoever of you is sick or on a journey, a number of other days. Allah desires for you ease; He desires not hardship for you; and that you should complete the period, and that you should magnify Allah for having guided you, and that perhaps you may be thankful.”

4Ramadan is the ninth month of the Islamic calendar, and is observed by Muslims worldwide as a month of fasting to commemorate the first revelation of the Quran to Muhammad according to Islamic belief. This annual observance is regarded as one of the Five Pillars of Islam. The month lasts 29–30 days based on the visual sightings of the crescent moon, according to numerous biographical accounts compiled in the hadiths.

5 A hadith is one of various reports describing the words, actions, or habits of the Islamic prophet, Muhammad. Hadith are second only to the Quran in developing Islamic jurisprudence (divine law) and regarded as important tools for understanding the Quran and commentaries (tafsir) written on it. The time for Ramadan is set by the lunar cycle and so is different each year. A common purely lunar calendar is the Islamic (or Hijri Qamari) calendar. A feature of the Islamic calendar is that a year is always 12 months, so the months are not linked with the seasons and drift each solar year by 11 to 12 days. It comes back to the position it had in relation to the solar year approximately every 33 Islamic years.

6The word Ramadan comes from the Arabic root ramiḍa or ar-ramaḍ, which means scorching heat or dryness. Fasting is fardh (obligatory) for adult Muslims, except those who are suffering from an illness, travelling, are elderly, pregnant, breastfeeding, diabetic or going through menstrual bleeding. Fasting the month of Ramadan was made obligatory in the second year after the Muslims migrated from Mecca to Medina (623 CE, CE stands for Common Era).

2While fasting from dawn until sunset, Muslims refrain from consuming food, drinking liquids, smoking, and engaging in sexual relations. Muslims are also instructed to refrain from sinful behavior that may negate the reward of fasting, such as false speech (insulting, backbiting, cursing, lying, etc.) and fighting. Food and drink is served daily, before dawn and after sunset. Spiritual rewards (thawab) for fasting are also believed to be multiplied within the month of Ramadan. Fasting for Muslims during Ramadan typically includes the increased offering of salat (prayers) and recitation of the Quran.

8It is believed that the Quran was first revealed to Muhammad during the month of Ramadan which has been referred to as the “best of times”. The first revelation was sent down on Laylat al-Qadr (The night of Power) which is one of the five odd nights of the last ten days of Ramadan. According to hadith, all Holy Scriptures were sent down during Ramadan. The tablets of Ibrahim, the Torah, the Psalms, the Gospel and the Quran were sent down on 1st, 6th, 12th, 13th and 24th Ramadan respectively.

The end of Ramadan is ‘Eid al-Fitr which is the Feast of the Breaking of the Fast. A greeting for this special holy day is Id Mubarak (“May God make it a blessed feast.”)


Muhammed Ali, A Great Muslim, A Great Citizen of the World!

Photo Credit: muslimmirror.com

Photo Credit: muslimmirror.com

Muhammad Ali may go down in history as the first real “citizen of the world.” The champion person had a great perspective on life!

CLICK here for the CBS This Morning feature with Laila Ali’s thoughts on her Father’s Death.

“My dad was not only the best fighter ever, but also such a great man, and there will never be anyone else like him,” Ali said. “And I think that anywhere you go in the world, people not only recognize him but also love him because of the man that he is. Because he stood up for his beliefs. He fought for those that couldn’t speak up for themselves, and he’ll truly be missed by all of us.” Confidence comes from preparation, doing the hard work. I do understand the circle of life. Thanks for all the love, we appreciate it.”—Laila Ali

By Ron Kampeas from The Times of Israel:

Big Brother, Little Brother... Photo Credit: neilleifer.com

Big Brother, Little Brother… Photo Credit: neilleifer.com

Among the speakers Ali selected for his funeral was Billy Crystal, who in the 1970s performed a one-man comedic sketch framed as a boxing match, “15 Rounds,” that celebrated Ali’s triumph over racism. Crystal, speaking at the service, said he got “lost in him,” like he never had playing any other character. Ali, after one performance, gave him the ultimate compliment: “Little brother, you made my life better than it was,” Crystal recalled.


Crystal, who said Ali called him his “little brother,” also spoke at length about how Ali helped him raise funds for an Israeli-Palestinian theater project that is ongoing at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, and how Ali quit a sports club after Crystal told him they didn’t accept Jewish members.

Two rabbis spoke at the Memorial Service for Muhammad Ali:

Muhammad Ali was the "heart" of Louisville, Said Rabbi Joe Rapport. Photo Credit itv.com

Muhammad Ali was the “heart” of Louisville, Said Rabbi Joe Rapport. Photo Credit itv.com

Rabbi Joe Rapport, the rabbi of Congregation Adath Israel Brit Shalom in Louisville spoke of life being a journey with birth being the beginning and death a destination. “Victory is in making the journey. Victory lives not in some high place along the way but in having made the journey, stage by stage, a sacred pilgrimage to life everlasting.”

Watching the Memorial Service on TV inspired me to think that while we made occupy different bodies we can share and be the same spirit… Rabbi Rapport went on to tell a story of Ali and his daughter Laila and how he recognized “that’s me in her,” a beautiful thing and a joy of every parent to know they passed along goodness in their children.

“We all have the same God, we just see him differently.”—Rabbi Joe Rapport

Ali had not one but two rabbis speak at his memorial service.

Rabbi Michael Lerner’s words as captured by Ron Kampeas from The Times of Israel:

TROML is a spiritual process and can incorporate any religious views or none at all.“We know what it’s like to be demeaned,” Lerner said of American Jews, which he said he was speaking for. “We know what it’s like to have a few people who act against the highest visions of our tradition, to then be identified as the value of the entire tradition. And one of the reasons that we at Tikkun magazine, a magazine for liberal and progressive Jews, but also an interfaith magazine, have called on the United States to stand up against the part of the Israeli government that is oppressing Palestinians, is that we as Jews understand that our commitment is to recognize that God has created everyone in God’s image and that everyone is equally precious, and that means the Palestinian people as well as all other people on the planet.”

Billy Crystal, his close friend sports journalist Howard Cosell was Jewish, two rabbis… Ali a Muslim… a Jewish editor calling for precious Palestinian people to be recognized and treated equally… doesn’t the world tell us that Muslims hate Jews who hate Palestinians and everyone hates Americans?

Say it isn’t so Anonymous Andy… it isn’t so!

4And love is love is love is love is love is love is love is love,” Lin-Manuel Miranda said in his moving acceptance sonnet two days later at the Tony Awards ceremony extinguishing the hatred exercised that morning in Orlando…

Love trumps hate… they can’t coexist, not in the world or in our hearts.

The majority of human beings in the world know this and are simply being love with their lives.

Why isn’t a tiny minority in power the world over not making peace and love happen?

Why can’t each one of us make it happen in our own lives, all the time with everyone we meet?

Attallah Shabazz, the eldest daughter of Malcolm X, shared these words of wisdom as captured by David Zirin of TheNation.com:

A unifying topic was faith and ecumenical faith, respect for faith, all faiths, even if belonging to one specific religion or none, the root of such being the gift of faith itself. So in his own words, he wrote:

5“We all have the same God, we just serve him differently. Rivers, lakes, ponds, streams, oceans all have different names but they all contain water. So do religions have different names and yet they all contain truth. Truth expressed in different ways and forms and times. Doesn’t matter whether you’re a Muslim, a Christian or a Jew. When you believe in God, you should believe all people are part of one family. For if you love God, you can’t love only some of his children.“—Muhammad Ali

Other speakers at Muhammad Ali’s Memorial Service included Lonnie Ali, Muhammad Ali’s widow; Rasheda Ali-Walsh, Ali’s daughter; President Bill Clinton and Rev. Kevin Cosby, pastor at St. Stephen Church in Louisville and president of Simmons College of Kentucky.

Let’s end with more words of faith and wisdom from Muhammad Ali, A Great Muslim, A Great Citizen of the World! Let’s all try to be Ali in our own lives! TROML Baby!

“As-salamu alaykum,” peace be upon you Muhammad Ali…

6“He (another boxer) s not the active top man recognized by the people of Africa, Asia, London, America, Black, White, Red, Yellow, Blue, Catholic, Jew, Moslem, Christian, Baptist, Methodist, he is not recognized by those people, I am the man, all over the land, if you do not believe it, just interfere with my plan.“—Muhammad Ali

“Everything I do now, I do to please Allah,” he once said. “I conquered the world, and it didn’t bring me happiness. The only true satisfaction comes from honoring and worshiping God. … Being a true Muslim is the most important thing in the world to me. It means more to me than being black or being American.” —Muhammad Ali

More highlights from the Muhammad Ali memorial service by Melissa Gray, CNN

“As-salamu alaykum,” peace be upon you Muhammad Ali…


‘All From One,’ Unity Amid Diversity Exhibit in South Africa…

_640 COVER PAST All From ONE

How can we go forward together if we don’t look at our past? Photo Credit: Palaeontological Scientific Trust (PAST)

On Tuesday, January 19th, 2016, Day 42 of the Golf & Life Journey to South Africa, after playing the East Golf Course of Royal Johannesburg & Kensington Golf Club, I ventured up to Pretoria to do some sightseeing.  What I saw was the PAST ‘All From One’ exhibit outside the Standard Bank offices in Rosebank.

You know how you know that a single brief interaction of a chance meeting with someone can change your life? Well this was one of those experiences with the ‘All From One’ exhibit and exhibit guide Gary Trower. It was brief but the seed was planted and of course the pictures taken for documentation purposes and future digestion of all the impacts.

With archaeologist Gary Trower at the 'All From One' exhibit in Pretoria, South Africa.

With archaeologist Gary Trower at the ‘All From One’ exhibit in Pretoria, South Africa.

While I am not a scientist in this regard, truth be known, we all do come from the same ancestors and are 99.9% alike yet why does the world focus on our differences?

‘All From One’ is the scientific base for our spiritual unity…

Here is more from the Palaeontological Scientific Trust (PAST) website and below the words are in the pictures to follow along in the exhibit just like I did during my visit to South Africa. Images courtesy of John Gurche.


I hope that you can commit to tolerance, unity, collaboration and conservation as I did that fateful day in South Africa.  We are all ‘spiritual beings living a human life,’ and ‘we are a part of nature, not apart from nature!’ TROML Baby!



The science of our origins reveals the shared African roots of all people. PAST uses Africa’s ancient fossil heritage to build African dignity, promote social cohesion and environmental conservation, inspire scientific curiosity among school-going youth, and establish African leadership in the sciences related to our origins.

‘Unity Amid Diversity.’ Cultural and physical differences ensure the uniqueness of every individual. Yet underlying this diversity is a deeply woven humanity common to all people.

Our Place in Nature. Africa’s fossil heritage shows that the environment played a major role in the evolution of life and humankind. If the pace and extent of environmental change is too rapid or large for species to adapt, some will go extinct.

'Unity Amid Diversity.' Photo Credit: John Gurche

‘Unity Amid Diversity.’ Photo Credit: John Gurche

Welcome to the website version of the PAST ‘All From One’ exhibition. The physical version of the exhibition opened on 10 November 2015 and is touring South Africa. It has thus far stood outside the Standard Bank offices in Rosebank, Johannesburg, the Soweto Theatre in Soweto, the Iziko South African Museum in Cape Town, and Maropeng in the Cradle of Humankind outside Johannesburg.

The exhibition is a striking structure recalling both a DNA double helix and the skeletons of two large prehistoric animals. A smaller, reconfigured version of the exhibition was produced as part of the South African Treasures exhibition at the United Nation’s World Intellectual Property Organization General Assembly in Geneva in October 2016.

_Humans part not apartThis website version of the exhibition contains similar information and some of the images from the two physical versions, plus additional information in “Dig Deeper” pages.

The ‘All From One’ exhibition draws on scientific evidence about our shared human origins and the shared origins of all life forms in order to challenge commonly held ideas about humankind and our place in nature.

You will see that you are unique, but that you share strong bonds of similarity with all other people, based on a deeply rooted common humanity. As a species, you will see we are but one twig among millions on the tree of life that sustains us all.

All told, you will see that shared origins is a potent force for tolerance, unity, collaboration and conservation.