Sharing the Spirit of Ramadan

Greeting guests at a Buka Puasa at our home

Greeting guests at a Buka Puasa at our home

It has been a pleasure for my wife Jan and me to host a series of buka puasas at our home during the month of Ramadan. These past weeks we have invited many people from different walks of life in Malaysia to share the breaking of the fast. We are happy that these buka puasas have given us an opportunity to have many lively discussions about the role of Islam in Malaysia, the U.S. and the world. Spending time with old and new friends alike has been enjoyable for us.

Sharing a story with a guest

Sharing a story with a guest

America has a diverse religious landscape. Immigration continues to transform it even more. Religious freedom in America is a core value. We are a nation founded by people seeking religious liberty. America is a reverent country, but also a tolerant one. People with diverse views can practice their faiths in the U.S. When he hosted an Iftar at the White House on September 1, 2009, President Obama quoted prominent Muslim-American and boxing legend Muhammad Ali: “Rivers, ponds, lakes and streams – they all have different names, but they all contain water. Just as religions do – they all contain truths.” We will continue to seek ways of advancing relations between Malaysia and the U.S. on the basis of mutual respect and mutual interest.

Right now, people from many religions are living and working side by side in America, just as they are in Malaysia. At these buka puasa dinners, we were able to share our friendship with Malaysians of all faiths.

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