The World Faith Blog

World Faith: The Interfaith Service Network

Interfaith Social Media: Interfaith Leadership in the Digital World 12 April , 2012

This webinar will explore how to think about social media.  Using the frameworks of Marshall McLuhan, marketing theory, and media hook, we will explore how to leverage these technologies tactically, to comprise an effective overall strategy in interfaith and religious work.  #socialinterfaith

Frank Fredericks is the founder of World Faith, Çöñár Records, and Co-Founder of Religious Freedom USA. After graduating from NYU, Frank worked in the music industry, managing artists such as Lady Gaga. In 2006, he founded World Faith. a youth-led interfaith organization active in ten countries. As an active blogger, Frank has contributed to the Huffington Post, Washington Post, and Sojourners. Frank has been interviewed on Good Morning America, NPR, New York Magazine, and various international media outlets, and is an IFYC Fellow Alumnus, Soliya Fellow, and YouthActionNet Fellow.

Frank also works as an independent Online Marketing and PR Consultant, consulting non-profits, corporations, foundations, recording artists, and political campaigns on web issues ranging from viral video and social networks to SEO and advertising. He resides in New York, New York, where he still performs as a professional musician with local artists.

Title: Interfaith Social Media:  Interfaith Leadership in the Digital World

Date: Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Time: 10:00 AM – 11:00 AM CDT

To register for the webinar visit: http://www.parliamentofreligions.org/news/index.php/2012/04/interfaith-social-media-interfaith-leadership-in-the-digital-world/

After registering you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the Webinar.

 

Using Facebook to build friendships between French Muslims and Jews 25 July , 2011

PARIS (JTA)—At a glance, the Muslim-Jewish picnic at the peace fountain in Yitzhak Rabin Garden, in this city’s Bercy Park, looks like a reunion of old friends.

Middle-aged men and women sit on blankets and laugh together, snacking on carrots and Middle Eastern pastries. A circle of women dances wildly to the tunes of a guitarist and tambourine player.

But many of the 100 or so people there have never met—at least not face to face.

They are part of a groundbreaking group that is trying to build bridges between Muslims and Jews in France by fostering a community on Facebook where members can interact directly online about the issues that divide them, and then meet at occasional social gatherings like the recent picnic in Paris.

The group is called Shalom | Paix | Salam—the Hebrew, French and Arabic words for peace.

“It’s revolutionary,” says Mohamed Kamli, a Muslim law student at the Sorbonne and one of the group’s assistant directors. “You don’t have to go up to a random person on the street and say, ‘You have a kipah, let’s talk about some issues.’ ”

The group is trying to change the nature of the relationship of Jews and Muslims in France—one that is marked more by friction and conflict than by friendship. Shalom | Paix | Salam, which is coordinated by five Muslims and five Jews, all volunteers, was launched after Muslim-Jewish tensions in France boiled over during the Gaza War of 2008-09.

READ MORE

 

How to Use Facebook to Build Friendships Between French Muslims and Jews 19 July , 2011

PARIS (JTA) — At a glance, the Muslim-Jewish picnic at the peace fountain in Yitzhak Rabin Garden, in this city’s Bercy Park, looks like a reunion of old friends.

Middle-aged men and women sit on blankets and laugh together, snacking on carrots and Middle Eastern pastries. A circle of women dances wildly to the tunes of a guitarist and tambourine player.

But many of the 100 or so people there have never met — at least not face to face.

They are part of a groundbreaking group that is trying to build bridges between Muslims and Jews in France by fostering a community on Facebook where members can interact directly online about the issues that divide them, and then meet at occasional social gatherings like the recent picnic in Paris.

 

READ MORE

 

Virtual Bridge Allows Strangers in Mideast to Seem Less Strange 14 July , 2011

RAMALLAH, West Bank — Moad Arqoub, a Palestinian graduate student, was bouncing around the Internet the other day and came across a site that surprised and attracted him. It was a Facebook page where Israelis and Palestinians and other Arabs were talking about everything at once: the prospects of peace, of course, but also soccer, photography and music.

“I joined immediately because right now, without a peace process and with Israelis and Palestinians physically separated, it is really important for us to be interacting without barriers,” Mr. Arqoub said as he sat at an outdoor cafe in this Palestinian city.

 

READ MORE

 

World Faith Facebook Page Live! 1 November , 2009

Filed under: Blog Post,News — Frank Fredericks @ 2:36 pm
Tags: , , , ,

Ciao All!

Just a quick note that World Faith’s new Facebook page is up.  We will begin using our group less and less and promote through our Facebook page more as it’s easier to manage.

 

A Recent Conversation 17 December , 2008

So, a friend and former roommate of mine, Daniil Leiderman, posted a valid and often unanswered question very eloquently on World Faith’s new Cause on Facebook. He has been the source of many great conversations that force me to articulate myself in different ways, and so I felt it would be interesting for you who read this.  I attempted to respond with my personal thoughts, but I think this is a discussion that will continue on without a clear answer, but is still worth exploring.

Daniil Leiderman wrote:
True understanding between faiths is an admirable and worthy goal which has numerous precedents in human history. However the trouble comes in as religions seem to go through cycles of moderation and extremism.

In cycles of extremism seemingly moot issues become perevalent and make open discourse difficult–i.e. the Biblical and Koranic prohibition on idolatry, while apparently anachoronistic, became a major issue in the last decade or so beginning when the Taliban destroyed ancient statues of the buddha causing world wide protest in Christian and Muslim countries alike, followed by protests around the issue of Mohammed being visually represented in a Dutch political cartoon. How does one accomodate each dogma along with each possible degree of religious fervor–from the tolerant to the statue-exploding, to the western (quite possibly Eurocentric) willingness to treat nothing as beyond satire?

Another problem is that of interfaith tolerance between say Catholics and Satanists, or even the status of such faiths as satanism, wicca, astarte,Thelema or Scientology within the general question of religious tolerance. What to do about such “cults”, especially (back to satanism) when their foundation is defined by antagonism?

 

Frank Fredericks responds:

Very Good Question Daniil,

While I am no authority on the issue, There are some things I have stumbled across some concepts and approaches that allow for both maintaining religious strictness while acknowledging irreconciliable differences. Essentially, enough common ground can be made between two faiths which contain “exclusivity” clauses (e.g. Christianity or Islam).

Essentially, we can start by exploring shared values… While many paint religious relations in a dialectical manner, the religious with the most conflict have the most in common, in values and in shared history. This often leads to the creation of shared experiences… I as a Christian may have experienced the same questioning of my faith, or persecution for my faith, or what have you, as a Hindu, Satanist, or Athiest may. This is essentially shared humanity.

The next step is where I like to leave the common dialogue path, and why I don’t even like the term “dialogue.” Often times people feel they have to leave with something in agreement. I don’t. I think more important than “understanding” the opposing faith, is discovering the humanity of someone of the other identity. This is why at World Faith we focus less on talking, and we just want to get young people working together on community service projects (a shared value of faith traditions), as a means to build friendships with the “other.”

I think the problem lies is when people abuse religious language for politic gain. Your examples illustrate this effectively. Often times, among all religious traditions at some point, people will step forward with a tainted message that promotes fear, judgement, and ultimately hate. Yet when we look at religious traditions, if there is judgement, it is only for their god(s) to carry it out, or a spiritual law (e.g. Karma). I have found this true of virtually everyone religious tradition I have looked closely at.

So to break it down further, it is not that we do not promote (or discriminate) Moral Relativism. It is that we all are in pursuit of truth (which may be the lack of absolute truth for Moral Relativists). So let’s say one comes from a religion that forbids the consumption of pork. This moral believe does not require that the person admonish others for their swine-eating transgressions. Rather, they should live their life by their moral assumptions, and then use their interactions to show grace, humility, forgiveness, or whatever religious instruction they have on the topic. This, despite what many say about it, is the call by most faith traditions.

Now, I don’t believe we will ever get together and sing koumbaya, and I am generally annoyed by those who have such idealism (must be the New Yorker in me). However, right now, the extremists of all colors dominate the conversation of faith in society’s media and politics, though they are a tiny minority. We just have to mobilize well enough to reveal to everyone in the middle that they should not fear their neighbors, but that interaction, cross-religion friendships, and common action are safe, possible, and closer to the intent of faith traditions, so that the shared values and experience become mutual respect.

  

From the discussion board of the World Faith Cause on Facebook:

http://www.facebook.com/topic.php?app_id=2318966938&xid=cause_122628_board&c_url=http%253A%252F%252Fapps.facebook.com%252Fcauses%252Fcauses%252F122628%252Fdiscussion_board%253Fm%253Dc60e0f72&r_url=http%253A%252F%252Fapps.facebook.com%252Fcauses%252F122628%253Fm%253Dc60e0f72%2526recruiter_id%253D1027601&sig=31983ded73753b17558c13766ce10b6e&topic=544