In His Meeting with the Indonesian Scholar Council, the Grand Imam of Al-Azhar launches a Call for Reconciliation among the Scholars of Muslim ummah and commends the Indonesian Experience

  • | Monday, 22 February, 2016
In His Meeting with the Indonesian Scholar Council, the Grand Imam of Al-Azhar launches a Call for Reconciliation among the Scholars of Muslim ummah and commends the Indonesian Experience

The Grand Imam of Al-Azhar Prof. Ahmad Al-Tayyib launches a call for reconciliation, tolerance among the scholars of the Muslim ummah, and for denouncing all kinds of disagreement and sectarianism, commending the experience of the Indonesian Scholar Council which gathered all different schools of thought in one council.
During his meeting with the Council, his eminence the Grand Imam said that the scholars have to educate all people about the tolerance and moderation of Islam and its call for peaceful coexistence with others, warning against the extremist approaches and obliging people to follow a certain school of thought.  He added that the Islamic heritage teaches us the culture of difference as the Companions of the Prophet (PBUH) and their followers introduced a unique example of such culture and none of them tried to discredit or disqualify others. Moreover, they did not spread the culture of tafsiq, takfir or tabdi' (labeling others as unreliable whose testimony are not accepted, or infidels or that they are introducing innovation into the teachings of Islam) as some are trying to do now in order to provoke a religious conflict which leads, ultimately, to blood-shedding and killings as it is the case now in many Arab countries.
His eminence the Grand Imam also pointed out that the schools which went to the extreme, disqualified and excluded other schools were materially and spiritually supported for the purpose of sewing disagreement among Muslims. However, Islam accepts all schools. He also emphasized that Al-Azhar was the first to call for mutual rapprochement among all schools of thought. In the last Ramadan, he added, I called upon the moderate scholars from among the Sunni and Shia schools to attend to Al-Azhar Al-Sharif to issue a statement for prohibiting  the killing the Sunnis by the Shiites and vice versa. But, unfortunately, the Shiite scholars have not responded to it so far.
His eminence the grand Imam added, "One can't be declared a disbeliever unless he/she denies something which is known in religion by necessity or when he/she belies the Qur'an and the authentic Sunnah." He went on to say, "We cannot declare Shiites disbelievers; we, all the time, emphasize that they are Muslims. However, there are some extremists of them who verbally abuse the Companions of the Prophet and attribute the message of Islam to someone other than Prophet Muhammad (PBUH). As a matter of fact, those extremists spend big amounts of money to spread the Shiite approach, division and doctrinal dispute. There is no doubt that all of this is completely rejected."
With regard to Al-Azhar Al-Sharif curricula, his eminence the Grand Imam pointed out that Al-Azhar curriculums were and still are bringing up our youth on the moderate middle course of Islam, adding that some of those promoting unilateral learning approach have taken part in creating extremism and have implanted fanaticism in the hearts of the young Muslim generations in such a way that causes them to reject the other.  
The meeting was attended by Dr. M'aruf Amin, head of the Indonesian Scholar Council, Luqman Al-Hakim, Indonesian Minister of Awaqaf and Religious Affairs and the Egyptian ambassador to Indonesia, Bahaa' Al-Dusuqi.
The delegation accompanying the Grand Imam of Al-Azhar included the following members of the Muslim Council of Elders: Prof. Hamdy Zaqzouq, field- marshal Abdul Rahman Siwar al-Dhahab, Prof. Muhammad Quraish Shihab, Mr. Mohamed Abdel Salam, the Grand Imam of Al-Azhar's legal advisor, Mr. Ali al-Amin, Sheikh Ibrahim Saleh al-Husseiny, Dr. Ahmed Al-Haddad, Prof. Sharmon Jackson, Prof. Abu Lubabah Taher, Dr. Kaltham al-Muhairy, and Prof. Ali al-Naimy, Secretary-General of the Muslim Council of Elders.


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