Journalist, Abdhul-Rehman Malik, from This Being Human Podcast interviews Omid on the commercialization of spirituality, Rumi’s Guest House, reframing emotions, and embracing radical love like Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
Abdul-Rehman Malik is an award-winning journalist, educator, and organizer. He is a frequent contributor to BBC Radio, offering contemporary perspectives on spirituality. His recent documentary work includes the “The Muhammadan Bean: The Secret History of Islam and Coffee.” Since 2019, Malik has served as a lecturer and associate research scholar at the Yale Divinity School. He is also the program coordinator for Yale University’s Council on Middle East Studies and the director of the Muslim Leadership Lab, an innovative program being incubated at Yale’s Dwight Hall Center of Social Justice.
This podcast was is a part of the Aga Khan Museum’s new series – This Being Human, hosted by Abdhul-Rehman Malik. Check out interviews with Ginella Massa, Sultan Al Qassemi and other cultural leaders who explore what it means to be Muslim in today’s world: This Being Human.
Omid is now offering a selection of enlightening online courses on Rumi, Black Liberation, and the Qu’ran, at Illuminated Courses.com
Commercialization & Marketization of Spirituality
Introducing a special dual-cast with the Aga Khan Museum’s This Being Human podcast—sharing extraordinary stories from the most interesting artists, writers, athletes, and thinkers on the kaleidoscope of Muslim experience—Omid and Abdul-Rehman Malik embark in illuminating conversation on the commercialization and marketization of spirituality. Recognizing the necessity of financing sustainable quality offerings, we are invited, through a Muslim lens, to contemplate this nuanced balance of spirituality and the marketplace.
“What do you do with the fact that in a contemporary context it seems like everyone and everything is up for sale? That includes spiritual traditions.” – Omid Safi
Explore the bridging modern intersection between spirituality, creativity, and earning a living, on Ep. 3 of Creativity, Spirituality, & Making a Buck
Rumi & the Guest House (17:17)
Elucidating Rumi’s poem ‘The Guest House,’ Omid shares its beautiful allegory in visualizing your emotions as passing guests in the house of your being – a method for being generous, dignified, and mindful towards one’s own emotions. Applying this to our interactions with others, Omid invites us into Rumi’s practice of recognizing all sentient beings as guest houses for transient thoughts and emotions.
“You are not your emotions. You are the host of your emotions. These are your guests. So, be gracious towards them. In the great Muslim languages, in the old days we wouldn’t say, ‘What’s up?’ We’d ask each other, ‘How is the transient state of your heart?’ There was an awareness that when we come across another human being, that they are a guest house, they have thoughts and emotions that are visiting them as transient guests.” – Omid Safi
Join Omid and dive deeper into the loving poetry and innate flowing wisdom of Rumi, on Ep. 20 of Sufi Heart
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. & Embracing Radical Love (34:12)
Invited by Abdul-Rehman Malik to speak about teaching ‘Radical Love‘ in a time when the term ‘radical’ is deemed dangerous and derogatory, Omid harkens to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s answer to accusations of extremism. Rather than backing off and stifling the movement’s opposition to injustice, Omid shares Dr. King’s embracement of the title, questioning anyone who wouldn’t be fanatically enamored when on a true mission of love, oneness, wholeness, and freedom.
“The question is not whether we will be extremists, but what kind of extremists we will be. Will we be extremists for hate or for love?” – Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
Omid reflects on the life, impact, and lessons of Freedom Movement leader Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., on Ep. 11 of Sufi Heart