On Friday April 21, 2017, The Interfaith Institute of ICLI had as its guest
Imam Dr. Salahuddin M. Muhammad. He is the author of the book
“Bridging the Divide Between Immigrant and African-American Muslims
by Utilizing the Concept of Tawheed As the Catalyst”. He has a Bachelor's
degree in the Social Sciences from SUNY at New Paltz. He has a Masters
degree in Theology and Counseling from New York Theological Seminary.
In addition, he received a Graduate Certificate in Islamic Chaplaincy and a Doctoral degree in Islamic Studies and Christian/Muslim relations from Hartford Seminary. Imam Salahuddin M. Muhammad was employed as a Muslim Chaplain for the New York State Department of Correctional Services from 1985. In 1986, he became the resident Imam of Masjid Al Ikhlas, (formally Masjid Al Jihad Al Akbar), located in the City of Newburgh, New York, where he played an active role in battling drugs, crime, gang violence and prostitution in the area. Imam Salahuddin Muhammad made Hajj to the Holy City of Mecca in 1990 and again in 2000.
Imam Salahuddin Muhammad emphasized that Tawheed is the teaching of Islam; unhindered by cultural, ethnic, national or racial considerations. He pointed out that children are not born with biases; it is adults that put the biases in them…. He shared his personal journey of coming away from the “racism” he was taught when he was a member of the organization called “The Nation of Islam”. He said he came away from racist ideas and embraced the universal teachings of Islam.
The following comments were taken from an email sent by Imam Salahuddin M. Muhammad after returning to North Carolina: “I was very impressed with the architectural design of the Center and got a real warm feeling from the building as we went in. I was really impressed with the President (of ICLI) being a woman… I asked how many board members there were and was told 23. I was then told that the board consists of half women and half men. I really enjoyed the warmth expressed at the luncheon by all attendees... I really appreciated your heartfelt words Dr. Faroque (May Allah continue to bless you to be the sensitive leader that you are). You mentioned that ICLI celebrates Black History Month and I thought that was very good. Thank you so very much for your kindness, hospitality, and generosity. I want you to know that I support what you are doing and if you need my help, I am just a phone call away.”
Imam Salahuddin M. Muhammad is a student of the late contemporary Islamic leader Imam Warith Deen Mohammed. He is a member of numerous affiliations: The Mosque Cares, the Association of Muslim Chaplains, The Mid-Atlantic Sectional Majlis, Muslims for Social Justice, the Islamic Society of North America and the Muslim Alliance of North America. He now lives in Raleigh, North Carolina, where he is the Associate Imam at the As Salaam Islamic Center.
This event attracted a large gathering, received extensive TV and print media coverage in Newsday, Long Island Press and Islamic Horizon magazine.
Earlier this year when we heard about the visit of Pope Francis we extended an invite for him to formally launch the interfaith institute at ICLI which he was unable to accommodate.
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