Madonna and her Muslim boyfriend, visiting Haghia Sophia and Sultanahmet Mosque in Istanbul

Four points about Madonna’s interest in Islam

How are we to make sense of Madonna’s interest in Islam? It’s about a number of factors, ranging from Islamophobia to the entertainment industry to racial privilege. And the Islamic ethical tradition might have something to offer us here.

Tahera Ahmad reciting the Qur'an at ISNA convention

Words of God in women’s voices: Women reciting the Qur’an in public

A leading Muslim female scholar (Tahera Ahmad) recited the Qur’an at the national Muslim convention this year, a first. If we state that God is neither male nor female, and we emphatically do, then we should be capable of listening to the words of that God coming from the mouth of women and men, children and adults. If God can speak through a burning bush, God can speak through a woman.

Dr. Faheem Younus is a clinical associate professor of medicine at the University of Maryland. He is a frequent lecturer about Islam, winner of the Presidential Service Awardan award, and the founder of Muslimerican.com. Photo courtesy Dr. Faheem Younus

COMMENTARY: Keep doomsday religion out of the Syrian conflict

(RNS) At this critical juncture, where some religious leaders have issued an all-out warning of a third world war, quoting the Bible to support the “annihilation of Damascus” is like poling at an inflamed appendix; don’t manage it promptly and it may rupture, triggering a much larger regional war

Jesus is risen Italian mosaic

Between Good Friday and Easter: A Muslim Meditation on Christ and Resurrection

When I reflect on the suffering of Christ, I see the connection between the suffering of Christ and the suffering of all of God’s children, all of us who are vessels of the Spirit of God. 
I seek the Easter of our own spirit, the resurrection of our spirit, long dead, brought back to God through God’s grace. May there be an Easter for the Jesus of our spirit, overcoming every death, every suffering and every affliction.

RNS photo courtesy Mazen Basrawi

Can you be a good Muslim and still have a dog?

(RNS) It's “Walk your Dog In Front of a Mosque Day,'' and it's not meant as a joyous occasion. Muslims’ alleged canine-phobia is often cited by critics of Islam as an example of how Western values and the faith are incompatible. Yet many Muslims the world over have dogs, and dogs figure prominently is some Islamic countries. By Omar Sacirbey.

RNS photo by Veridicu Photo

Are Muslims allowed to dance?

(RNS) The Taliban in Afghanistan beheaded 17 people, allegedly for dancing, according to one Afghan official. The reports shocked people around the world and provided fodder to critics of Islam. Does Islam forbid dancing? By Omar Sacirbey.