Well written tribute, I had the opportunity to co-speak with him on Facebook about Interfaith. God bless him.
I can relate to some of his anecdotes;
My story is similar; even now, a few Muslims on the right don’t like me for saying the same thing in 2002 on my Radio Show, published as a front-page leade article in Dallas Observer.
“He said frankly and fearlessly what he felt was good and in the interest of peace and co-existence. When the Babri Masjid—Ramjanam Bhoomi dispute caught the country in communal conflict, he came out with a formula that could have saved much time, energy, and resources had the stakeholders followed it. He suggested Muslims forego their claims on the Babri Masjid site and Hindus too forget disputes in Mathura and Kashi. They rejected the Maulana’s formula as some saw it as a “surrender.” That the Sangh Parivar liked the Maulana only kept many Muslims at a distance from him.
Indeed, I have fearlessly questioned the Muslim Scholars from the past. I wrote a piece on the source of extremism in Islam and pointed to the wrong interpretations by them. One Imam called and chewed me up, then a few weeks later, he saw a similar article by Humza Yousuf and called me up and said he does not know what to say anymore.
It is a shame that a few Muslims place the work of some of the scholars as gospel truth. Nothing should be beyond question.
“But then he turned ordinary incidents into extraordinary tales. It was the writing style, infused with everyday examples,” – I am evolving into a similar style.
“Maulana trained himself to remain positive in all situations, good or bad.” Indeed, that is me as well.
Now, my criticism of the Maulana – he did not understand or question the age-old flawed interpretation of verse 4:34, where a man can beat the woman. Even Ghamidi saheb did not update himself with the correct interpretation done by Dr. Laleh Bakhtiar, which is accepted worldwide now. The meaning of the word Daraba is not to beat but separate. God values men and women equally; no one is more privileged than the other. Video
Here is a good tribute by Mohammed Wajihuddin on Facebook