Over the weekend the Ahmadiyyah Muslim community held a symposium, “Stop the Crisis: Perception, Reality, & Solution”. The event was held at the Millennium Hotel in Buffalo, NY on Sunday, March 22, 2015 and was free of charge. The purpose of the event was to promote peace, harmony, and tolerance while denouncing the violence of extremist Muslims all over the world, particularly ISIS. A panel of speakers each presented on a particular subject area ranging from the history of Islam to Islam being a religion of peace and not of a religion of violence.
Ken Hamilton, the event moderator opened up the event and introduced each of the panelists. In response to why we hear so much negative news on Islam, he noted “News is about the anomaly, the good usually happens so when bad happens we report about it.” Ken who is a former Buddhist and now a born again Christian stressed that Islam is a peaceful religion and that all religions can and should live in peace and harmony. Imam Azam Akram, the second speaker of the event stated, “Islam itself means peace.” According to him those promoting terrorism and violence are not Muslims and should be denounced.
Ahmadiyyah Community Vice President Dr. Ahmad Chaudhary spoke mostly on solutions to the violence we see in the world. One of his solutions was for moderate Muslims to speak out and speak up against violence. The last speaker of the event was Imam Rizwan Khan who spoke mainly about peace, harmony, and justice.
The Ahmadiyyah Muslim community was founded in 1889 and preaches peace among all religions and universal brotherhood. The community is established in 170 countries and has a membership of millions. Dialogues and discussion across all faiths and all peoples are encouraged by the community. Events like the symposium held are quite common in this community and attract people from all walks of life.
The event closed off with a Question and Answer session, in which attendees wrote questions on cards to be read and answered by the panelists. Attendees packed the conference room and were very interested in hearing what each speaker had to say. Overall the event was a very informative and interesting.
To learn more about the Ahmadiyyah Muslim community click here.