The Orlando mass shooting shocked everyone to the core, especially as it came just two days after boxing legend Muhammad Ali’s funeral which was attended by world leaders and religious figures of different faiths to honour the life of one of the world’s most famous Muslims.
Following the senseless massacre in Orlando, Muhammad Ali’s daughter, Hana Ali, has beautifully risen to the occasion to challenge the hate spewing against Muslims and their religion from certain corners, spearheaded by the Republican candidate for president Donald Trump.
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Writing a piece for CNN, Hana, who is also the co-author of his autobiography, "The Soul of a Butterfly: Reflections on Life's Journey", penned her father’s views about Islam.
“Our father would be profoundly saddened and disappointed by the cowardice and heartless displays of inhumanity shown by the so-called Muslim gunman who took the lives of so many innocent people in the name of a religion which has as its very meaning: peace,” Hana wrote.
She went on to say that the boxing legend had always encouraged respect for all religions in his children. “As much as my father loved his faith, he raised us to respect all religions and all people and to judge no one. He taught us that no man has the knowledge and understanding God has, and he often quoted one of his favourite Islamic sayings when teaching us this spiritual lesson. ‘If all the oceans were ink and all of the trees were pens, it still would not be enough to write the knowledge of God.’”
Hana revealed Ali's philosophy about religion in 'The Greatest’s' own words. “’Hana,’ he'd say, ‘There is only one true religion, and that is the religion of the heart. God never named it Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Buddhism, etc. Man gave the titles, and that's what separates and divides us. My dream is to one day see a world that comes together to fight for one cause -- the human cause...’”
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She reminded everyone that despite all the upheavals in his life, Ali had let his heart lead him. He didn't hate those of a certain race based on the acts of a few and he didn't judge an entire religion based on the deeds of a single group of extremists, she added.
“If my father were here today, he would stand before you humbled with a whisper and a prayer. He is no longer of this world, and no one can speak for him. But we can embrace his example and let the healing begin within. For it is especially during these times that we need to let our heart guide us.”
Concluding the article, she prayed that the brutal act in Orlando would not harden the victims’ hearts. “Our thoughts and prayers go out to the family members of those who lost their lives -- all of the brothers, sisters, sons and daughters. May your hearts remain unhardened by this senseless act, and may your spirits always thrive in the light of love and forgiveness.”
This article originally appeared on CNN