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Rabbi Rami: As a fundamentalist Christian, am I safe from Muslims?

<em>Edit Article</em> Rabbi Rami: As a fundamentalist Christian, am I safe from Muslims?

Photo Credit: agsandrew/Thinkstock

Question: I consider myself a fundamentalist Christian, and I fear Muslims coming to America. Is Islam compatible with American values?Rabbi Rami: If by “Islam” you mean fundamentalist Islam, the answer is no. Fundamentalisms of any stripe, including your own, are incompatible with core American values such as freedom of thought, freedom of speech, freedom of assembly, freedom of the press, freedom of and from religion, egalitarianism, universal suffrage, and equality under the law without regard to race, color, ethnicity, religion, gender, sexual orientation, marital status, familial status, pregnancy, national origin, age, and so on. Only those branches of a religion that consciously embrace American values are compatible with American values. I understand why you might fear fundamentalist Islam. I hope you can understand why I might fear your fundamentalist Christianity as well.I’m in crisis. I’ve lost the meaning of life. How do I find it again?Meaning is made, not found. What is found—what must be found—is joy. There are two kinds of joy: deep and cheap. Most of us settle for the cheap: a quic …

Author and teacher Rabbi Rami Shapiro has been called “one of the best bridges of Eastern and Western wisdom.” His newest book is Embracing the Divine Feminine.

Join Rabbi Rami at the brand-new 1440 Multiversity in the California redwoods near Santa Cruz for a transformative and practical weekend workshop exploring the art of  lovingkindness. Register for the program at

Rabbi Rami Shipiro

Rabbi Rami Shapiro is an award-winning author, essayist, poet, and teacher. His spiritual advice column, “Roadside Assistance for the Spiritual Traveler,” addresses reader questions pertaining to religion, spirituality, faith, family, God, social issues, and more. His latest book is Surrendered—The Sacred Art: Shattering the Illusion of Control and Falling into Grace with Twelve-Step Spirituality.

He has this to say about religion: “To me, religions are like languages: no language is true or false; all languages are of human origin; each language reflects and shapes the mindset of the civilization that speaks it; there are things you can say in one language that you cannot say or cannot say as well in another; and the more languages you know, the more nuanced your understanding of life. Judaism is my mother tongue, yet in matters of the spirit I strive to be multi-lingual. In the end, however, the deepest language of the soul is silence.”

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