: Oct 14, 2016

I’ve worked with people of all different backgrounds. I’ve supported the good work of people who have attacked me. Every position I’ve taken on any issue has be…

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I’ve worked with people of all different backgrounds. I’ve supported the good work of people who have attacked me. Every position I’ve taken on any issue has been because I believed in that position. I do not believe in throwing the baby out with the bath water. If an activist or scholar does something good, I support them in that good no matter what because the issue is what’s important.

I don’t believe we can afford to attack each other. I do believe we are enriched by our differences. I personally enjoy sitting with people who completely differ with me on a wide range of issues but can have fruitful conversations about them. I grow by hearing the other side. In fact, as we’ve formed Yaqeen Institute for Islamic Research, the researchers we’ve chosen have wide differences in background and opinion and that genuinely excites me.

My advice to anyone who works in this space, listen to your critics and build bridges. Don’t let your ego (nafs) overtake you so that the only cause you work for is yourself. Speak the truth even if it is against yourself. My teacher once told me, “don’t feel bad if someone has cut you off without you having wronged them, but don’t ever be the one to sever ties.” So yes, even though we give each other headaches in this community, I still have love for you all and will still be your ally in anything I believe is good.

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