Former Shows & Episodes

The Optimistic Muslim

The Optimistic Muslim – 020612


The Optimistic Muslim – America’s Muslims ARE America’s Freedoms “Front Line of Defense”

Just where do America’s Muslims stand in the battle to defend America’s freedoms? It’s certainly not where people like Newt Gingrich think they stand. And just how much of a difference is there, between true Islamic Shariah -the best traveled path to peace and freedom first walked by Muhammad- and the American Bill of Rights?
American Muslim Corey Saylor, spokesperson for American Civil Rights Organization the Council on American-Islamic Relations is proud of the path he walks, defending America, Islam, Americans and American Muslims together, and he sees no honest conflict between them. Join the Optimistic Muslim as he talks with CAIR’s official spokesperson and media expert and Director of Government Affairs about the real relationships between America’s Muslims, America and America’s Government and Constitution, and why that’s not always what you’ll read in the papers.
Because if you look closely you’ll see that America’s Rights and Freedoms are under attack, and America’s Muslims are defending them, on the front lines!

The Optimistic Muslim – Just What Is “The Crescent Directive”?

Sounds like a Muslim conspiracy, doesn’t it? But if it is, it’s one of the good kind!
Time and again you’ve probably heard, “If the majority of Muslims are moderate, “Mainstreet” Americans who love their country, then where are the mainstream moderate Muslims, and why don’t we hear more of them?” Well, “Mainstream”, “Mainstreet” American Muslim Khurram Dara finally decided he’d heard it enough.
Growing up in Buffalo New York, he never thought he’d become the voice of his generation; but his “The Crescent Directive”, about “how PTA meetings, Thanksgiving dinner, and Little League will save Islam’s Image in America” has become the #1 best selling ebook on Islam on Amazon, because it’s all about what simple, “grass-roots” American Muslims can do to make America whole again.
Join the Optimistic Muslim as he talks to Khurram about why so many Muslim attempts to heal relationships by educating their neighbors about their religion fall flat, and how we can all be more effective.
As Khurram says, “We have a dog in this fight! We have a vested interest in protecting America!”
Do you agree? Then tune in to find out why, when, where and how!

The Optimistic Muslim – American Muslims Equals American Islam!

Having trouble cutting through all the back-and-forth rhetoric about Muslims in America?  Do you wish you could just know what was really going on?  Trust a New York Muslim like Imam Feisal Rauf, leader of the Cordoba Initiative, to give us all a reality check: American Muslims equals American Islam!  Muslim Diversity has been a fact of life since Islam began, with all those different perspectives combining to make Muslims better people everywhere, here included.
Join the Optimistic Muslim, Dr. David Liepert, as he talks with Imam Rauf about what it’s been like to be a Muslim leader–and sometimes a Muslim “lightning rod” as well–in these turbulent times.  Hear what Imam Rauf considers to be our best path forward; how America’s Muslims provide a positive role in America and around the world; and shares segments from the new book he’s working on that explains it all, Moving The Mountain.

The misconceptions about Muslims and Islamic culture are boundless.  Dr. David Liepert begins by sharing a personal experience in which he was chastised for wearing a necktie (what a fellow Muslim considered to be a “Christian symbol” of Muslim oppression).  Have you had a similar experience?  Has your family or friends?  One of the biggest misconceptions in recent history was the true meaning of the “Ground Zero” Mosque.  Imam Feisal Rauf explains just what he had intended–the true message of his elaborate project–when he brought forth the idea to the public.

“The wost part is Muslims having myths about their own faith!” says Imam Rauf, addressing that many of the “wrong” ideas about Islam come from the followers themselves.

Could it be that by pursuing their own authentic Islam, by following Muhammad’s exemplary practice, alongside their American aspirations towards the highest ideals we all hold dear, America’s Muslims have got something good to offer to everyone?  Tune in!

The Optimistic Muslim – Is Omaha, Nebraska the Interfaith Capital of the World?

What’s up with Omaha? Around the world, people of different faiths seem to be drawing lines of conflict and digging trenches, getting ready to fight the “Big One”. But in Omaha, Nebraska, the heartland of America, Muslims, Christians and Jews are buying land and building foundations together, in a shared attempt to worship and serve their Creator together. What do they know that most of us don’t? Join The Optimistic Muslim as he talks to Omaha, Nebraska’s faith leaders, fast becoming world-leaders in positive co-operative change about what they’re doing, why they’re doing it, and how it’s going so far!

The Optimistic Muslim – Dealing With The Reality Of Jesus

Join the Optimistic Muslim, Dr. David Liepert, author of Muslim, Christian AND Jew: Finding a Path to Peace Our Faiths Can Share, as he talks with Christian Evangelical Missionary to Muslims Carl Medearis, author of Muslims, Christians, and Jesus, about how Muslims and Christians can both share the world our God has Made–and share Jesus together–in peace!

Just who Jesus was exactly remains the great religious dividing line between Muslims, Christians and Jews; with most Christians believing him both God and Messiah, most Muslims believing him to be the Messiah but not God, and most Jews believing he’s neither.  However, most Muslims and Christians can at least agree that he’ll lead us all when he returns as we near the end of time–even though we have absolutely no idea how we’re going to get there! So the question remains: How can Muslims and Christians best navigate the doctrinal minefield of our religious differences, deal with how our different beliefs should affect what we are becoming, and how our different doctrines affect what we do?

“I wrote [my] book as an Evangelical Christian to Evangelical Christians to say ‘Let’s stop evangelizing,” says Carl Medearis of his book, Muslims, Christians, and Jesus.  His recent article on CNN, “My Take: Why Evangelicals Should Stop Evangelizing,” caused quite a stir, instantly becoming one of the most commented upon articles CNN online has ever had!  Medearis explains the reasoning behind his controversial stance, and gives listeners a behind-the-scenes look at the article that rocked the world toward the end of July.

What if there was an end to the “my religion can beat up your religion” attitude?  What if hearing the “Good News” no longer caused feelings of anger and resentment?  Can we get past the view of Jesus as a “white Rambo from Texas?”

Take a moment out of your day to calmly listen to this week’s episode.  You may be pleasantly surprised by what you hear!

The Optimistic Muslim – OccupyWallStreet? OccupyJudaism!!

When Daniel Sieradski, New Media Activist, Jewish Israeli/Palestinian human-rights advocate, artist, writer, and director of Jew It Yourself: An Every Day Guide to Do It Yourself Jewish Living saw his parents lose everything in the “Great Recession” he knew he had to add yet another line to his list of achievements, and so began his growing role in the OccupyWallStreet movement, helping lead the OccupyJudaism arm.  And now, Daniel is Dr. David Liepert’s guest on The Optimistic Muslim.

99% of Jews are right there with 99% of Muslims, 99% of Americans, 99% of Christians, and 99% of everyone else: Our communities have all lost out while the rich have gotten richer, the poor have gotten poorer, and “every man for himself” has replaced the ideal at the heart of all our dreams–that the freedom to work for yourself, coupled with a personal commitment to working together, brings more success, security, and happiness to everyone.

With his own parents going through a heartbreaking foreclosure on their long-time home, Daniel Sieradaski longed for a solution and a way to speak out…and along came Occupy Wallstreet.  Daniel became involved and describes his experiences throughout the episode.  But what is the real message of the Occupy movement?  And what has happened to the “American Dream?”

Dr. David Liepert and Daniel Sieradaski discuss not only the political and cultural relevance of the Occupy Movement, but the religious aspects as well.  They address the religious controversy that has been brought up time and again: How would Jesus really feel about Occupy Wallstreet?
Join the Optimistic Muslim as he talks to Daniel Sieradski about the lessons Judaism teaches about community living and financial responsibility–lessons that have been handed down from the bankers of Babylon!  If we’re all in this together, then we should all get out of it together too; here, there and everywhere. Tune in and find out how!

The Optimistic Muslim – Where’s Safe, When You’re Stuck Between Franklin Graham and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad?

While Middle-Eastern Arabs are throwing out dictators and demanding democratic freedoms, are some Christians “girding their loins” for Armageddon?  And are there “Armageddonist Muslims” out there who are on the same side?  Jeff Burns of Peace-Catalyst, an organization dedicated to “waging peace in the name of Jesus,” knows a thing or two about both sides of Christianity’s response to Islam.  Burns, moved from hating Muslims in 2005 by God’s amazing response to his prayer for peace, has become a crusader for co-operative faith, serving the Prince of Peace by seeking peace for the sake of us all.

Listen in as Dr. David Liepert, the Optimistic Muslim, speaks with Jeff Burns about Christian and Muslim end-time prophecy, how it’s affecting politics in the world today, and how wrong both sides who think the world is ending “soon” likely are–particularly if you take the time to ask a Rabbi about interpreting Jewish Prophecies in the Jewish Bible!

Just how pervasive is this crazy idea that believers can make the world a better place by killing each other?  How high up our Nation’s chain of command does that insanity reach?  (And what can we all do about it?)  “We’re not too far from goosestepping,” says Jeff Burns, addressing the oppression supposed Christian communities force upon Muslims and those following other n0n-Christian religions.  Preventing Muslims from building Mosques–or to worship publicly–is it really so different from Hitler’s treatment of the Jewish?

Proving once again that a little knowledge is a dangerous thing, best cured by bringing in a broader and more inclusive perspective, listen in to hear how different religions might actually be meant by God to work together to the benefit of everyone, instead of for “members only.”

If God’s so smart, maybe he knew what he was doing when he made us different, after all!

The Optimistic Muslim – Muslims And Business People Occupy Wall Street Too!

Is Occupy Wall Street  a growing ground-swell of popular discontent; an all-new approach to Wall-Street-watchdoggery; a new, broad, and inclusive force in American politics; or all of the above?  And just who IS Occupy Wall Street?  Join the Optimistic Muslim, Dr. David Liepert, as he talks to Muslim small business owner and Occupy Boston spokesperson Nadeem Mazen about the perspectives represented by Occupy Wall Street, the problems it is trying to resolve, the solutions it is considering, and the implications of an apparently Nationally co-ordinated crackdown on America’s much loved and lauded freedoms.  For the sake of our future, should we ALL join Occupy Wall Street?

“This would not have happened if we had had a proper community-based lending operation,” says Nadeem Mazen of the Occupy Wall Street movement.  But how does that feeling of “community” translate to finances?  And how does it effect the Muslim community as a whole?  More importantly, does working together automatically mean having a Socialist agenda?  (“Socialism is such a dirty word down in the states,” notes Dr. Liepert).

Dr. David Liepert asks the most important question in regard to the Occupy movement: “Are you starting to get traction with the people who are actually in control of the financial systems?”  Are they even occupying the right place?  (i.e. Wall Street occupation VS. Washington D.C. occupation).  Nadeem Mazen’s response might surprise you!

In an episode filled with Muslim anecdotes, financial wisdom, and kind-spirited humor, this is a “can’t miss” podcast!

Does “getting ahead” mean others have to be left behind?  Will the Occupy Wall Street movement eventually go away if they keep getting ignored?  Should Occupy Wall Street be “Occupy Obama?”  Nadeem Mazen and host Dr. David Liepert answer these questions, plus address low interest lending, hedge funds, casinos, fair trade, justice, and much more!  Tune in!

The Optimistic Muslim – Jihad For Jesus!

Rick Love, this episode’s guest on The Optimistic Muslim, might have started out wanting to turn Muslims into Christians, but when he learned more about Muslims and Islam he ended up becoming a better follower for Jesus himself.  The author of Peacemaking, Rick Love is one Christian who thinks relations between Muslims and Christians, despite all the nasty rhetoric on both sides, has been improving since September 11, 2001, and he’s not afraid to talk about why.

Host Dr. David Liepert doesn’t waste time getting to the important questions, starting off the interview by asking, “How can we help all of our people–whether they call themselves Christians or Muslims or Jews or non-alligned secularists–how can we help people share Jesus and the benefits of following him while they are sharing him in the kind of way that they have different relationships with him…?”

Rick Love and Dr. Liepert discuss if it’s even possible to promote Jesus in the name of peace when so many decidedly un-peaceful events have taken place in his name over the years.  What does it even mean to follow Jesus?  What does it mean for you?  For your neighbor?

“9-11 was a huge wake-up call for Muslims like me,” says Dr. Liepert, addressing the actions of Muslim radicals–actions that are not typical for followers of Islam.  While these horrific actions caused many to call out for a new Crusade, Rick Love, for one, said “no.”  Jesus was The Prince of Peace, so why is our first reaction when something goes wrong to react with violence or other extreme measures (evangelistic or otherwise)?  How can Muslims, Christians, and everyone else work together for a more peaceful world…?

Join the Optimistic Muslim, Dr. David Liepert, as he talks to Christian missionary to Muslims, Rick Love, who has realized that he’s Jesus’ missionary to Christians too, about why and how he thinks Muslims and Christians will share the world together, the role that Jesus will play, and how it’s Faith in God that’s going to make the difference for all of us in the end.