New Blogger Joins Inside Islam

My name is Colin Christopher and I’m the newest contributor to the Inside Islam project housed here at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. As a graduate student of international public affairs, my work requires me to analyze all angles of a policy before any sound analysis can begin. While we lack policy-making capacity here on the blog, every day we’re searching for ways to bring a range of perspectives on Islam and Muslims, more accurately reflecting the differing realities of the planet’s 1.57 billion Muslims.

We seek out insightful and engaging stories about artists, authors, and average folk from around the world, but we’re looking to you, the reader, for more feedback on what you want to hear about. What aren’t you hearing about from the mainstream media about Muslims and Islam that we can tap into? What questions do you have about Islam, as a Muslim or a non-Muslim, that you would like to have answered?

What separates Inside Islam from other blogs is our desire to bring voices to the table that are discounted, unrecognized, or unknown. Our agenda to offer a complete, rounded, and textured portrayal of Islam and Muslims partially relies on you to voice your interests, so please leave a comment below, contact us at blogislam@insideislam.wisc.edu or follow us on twitter @insideislam.

All of us at Inside Islam always look forward to hearing your comments and suggestions!

6 thoughts on “New Blogger Joins Inside Islam

  1. I am pleased to see that this joint effort by the UW and Wisconsin Public Radio is taking place. The public needs a place to learn the truth about issues related to Islam as well as having the medium for dialogue about issues of concern or interest. For those of us who know very little about Islam, topics such as the significance of Ramadan, tenants of the Qur’an and how Muslims practice their faith would be of interest. With the knee-jerk backlash against Muslims being fueled by media attention to topics like the NYC Mosque, we need a place for explanation and conversation. Make no assumptions about the understanding of Islam by those who tune in to “Inside Islam” or to your blog. We are a country with little understanding about Muslims and we need educating.
    I would be personally interested in the views of a Muslim High School student about what challenges, if any are faced in our public schools, as well as how they might be addressed. I am also very interested in the roles of Islamic women who have immigrated to the United States as opposed to the roles they held in their country of origin. Exploring how to change the perceptions that people have about Islam is a goal worth exploring as well. I wish you success in your endeavor to address and inform the public about a segment of our society we have limited knowledge about but hopefully a desire to experience growth and open-mindedness by understanding.

  2. I am intrigued by Muslims who are involved in innovative projects. Since 9/11, many Muslims have become lawyers and focused on civil rights, which is great. But there’s a lot more that Muslims can be involved in! This is a big country – and the more they become involved in all aspects of American society, the better. I recently came across this book, “Green Deen: What Islam Teaches About Protecting the Planet.” My friend Frank shared it on his facebook, I saw it, bought it, initially because I liked the cover. Reading it, I realize that there is a burgeoning movement within Islam to find teachings that inspire environmentalism. I think that’s beautiful. All religions teach wonderful things about protecting humanity and planet. It’s good to see Muslims really pulling out the positives of their DEEN – which I now know means “path” or “religion.” The author, Ibrahim Abdul-matin, is about as All American as you can get. College football player, radio personality, and he even works for the government! And he’s Muslim. Inside Islam? I’d say there’s some innovation. The book’s website is http://www.greendeenbook.com

  3. I’d like to see a Spiral Dynamics http://www.spiraldynamics.net analysis of the various cultural level interpretations and expressions of Islam that there are. This model shows that there are actually many Islams, as there are many Christianities, Buddhisms, Judiasms, etc. This uncollapsing of multiple perspectives may liberate us to understand better the contradictory positions that show up in each of these cultures and religions. It is likely also to show us how the different Islams, etc. require different approaches in order to successfully communicate with each of them and to successfully satisfy each of their differing needs.

  4. I would like to echo the above sentiments of the other commenters – this blog is a great idea and there are a lot of topics of interest to explore. In the spirit of increasing Americans’ understanding of Islam I have a suggestion: what are the major tenants taught by the Qur’an and how do Muslims navigate the various interpretations of it that have been made? Too often I’ve received spam emails from less-than-open-minded family members telling me that the Qur’an teaches Muslims to kill non-believers and so this is why they are so violent. These types of messages are sent and spread out ignorant fear of the unknown – so, please, enlighten us!

  5. What’s on my mind, is how moderate Muslims hope to engage Israel, Israelis, Jews, and others so that we can finally have peace! Is there hope?

  6. Moderate Muslims must become the predominant voice of Islam. If that does not happen, I’m afraid we are on a collison course. This blog can have a positive effect on making sure that voice is heard loud and clear.