Life – An Exalted Destiny – Aga Khan III

Life - An Exalted Destiny - Aga Khan III Life is a great and noble calling; not a mean and grovelling thing to be shuffled through as best as we can, but a lofty and exalted destiny.

Aga Khan Speech to All India Women’s Conference, New Delhi India

His Highness the Aga Khan Amaana.orgSpeech by His Highness The Aga Khan
New Delhi, India, March 26, 1980

ALL INDIA WOMEN’S CONFERENCE

As one of a few rather lonely males in such a distinguished, elegant and talented gathering of beautiful women, I find myself for once, and my family would readily confirm the rarity of the event, almost at a loss at what to say. I am not even very sure that I should be here at all. Like the Prime Minister, I too have never joined a woman’s organization, but for different reasons.

It is most of all, perhaps, a privilege and a very personal pleasure for us once again to meet your Prime Minister, Mrs. Indira Gandhi. Her remarkable gifts of leadership are universally admired and India is fortunate indeed to have Mrs. Gandhi at the helm in a period of exceptionally grave and complex international events.

One respect of your national life has always struck Me forcibly: the immense number and variety of organizations and people who engage in voluntary welfare work, aimed at the relief of the poor, the sick and the deprived. The Indians are a compassionate people. There are societies which care for orphans, trusts to promote low-cost housing, charity to help the blind and the deaf, groups who raise funds for medical programmes such as eradication of tuberculosis, for religious education, for day care centres, for scholarship and bursaries. The list is almost endless and touches every aspect of the human condition.

This is admirable, indeed it is. Yet how many have considered whether all this human effort, this spirit of service and sacrifice volunteered with such selfless devotion, is used as efficiently as it could be, and if it was, what the results might be?

Social institutions, whether operated by the State or by private benefactors, are not of course expected to make profit. More often they operate at a substantial loss. Nearly everywhere in the world, this sector of the national economy – health, education and housing – absorbs huge sums of public money and private charity.

In our own institutions operating in these fields, I have become more and more aware that because they were not profit-oriented, and therefore proper management systems did not appear so central to their very existence, the correct instruments for measuring performance, cost efficiency and management competence never were created. In recent years, therefore, we have spent considerable time and efforts in introducing appropriately qualified people and management systems into our welfare institutions and I am happy to be able to say that the results have been encouraging.

This is perhaps an area in which our experience is not unique. The better use of all resources, including voluntary, philanthropic, non-profit social welfare, is a matter which I believe to be of considerable importance to the developing world, and express here a hope that this is an area in which the All India Women’s Conference will be able to guide others, as this clearly is an area in which the Conference has been most successful.

I finish by expressing to the All India Women’s Conference, My warmest congratulations for this magnificent new complex and My admiration and My most sincere wishes for the Conference’s continued success.

Source:
http://www.amaana.org/ISWEB/womn80.htm

 

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Quran, 13:28

ألا بِذِكْرِ اللهِ تَطمَئِنُّ الْقُلُوبُ

“Verily! In the remembrance of Allah do hearts find contentment.” - Quran, 13:28

Prophet Muhammad

Prophet Muhammad:

‘Ali is ‘as my own soul’ (ka-nafsi).

He said to ‘Ali, ‘You are from me and I am from you (anta minni wa ana minka).’

‘Truly, ‘Ali is from me and I am from him (inna ‘Ali minni wa ana minhu), and he is the wali (patron/spiritual master) of every believer after me.’

Hazrat Ali

12. When some blessings come to you, do not drive them away through thanklessness.

13. He who is deserted by friends and relatives will often find help and sympathy from strangers.

Imam Ali Sayings

Imam Jaffer Sadiq

لاَ يَكُونُ شَيْءٌ فِي اْلاَرْضِ وَلا فِي السَّمَاءِ إِلاَّ بِهذِهِ الْخِصَالِ السَّبْعِ: بِمَشيئَةٍ وَ إِرادَةٍ وَقَدَرٍ وَقَضَاءٍ وَ إِذْنٍ وَكِتابٍ وَأَجَلٍ. فَمَنْ زَعَمَ أَنَّهُ يَقْدِرُ عَلى نَقْضٍ وَاحِدَةٍ، فَقَدْ كَفَرَ.

“Nothing occurs in this earth and in the heaven except with the following seven stages: Will, intention, destiny, decree, permission, book and implementation. Then whoever thinks that he can reduce any of these stages, then indeed he has disbelieved.”

- Imam Jaffer Sadiq, Usul al Kafi, vol. 1, p. 149

Rumi on Ramadan

The month of fasting has come, the emperor’s banner has arrived; withhold your hand from food, the spirit’s table has arrived. The soul has escaped from separation and bound nature’s hands; the heart of error is defeated, the army of faith has arrived. Fasting is our sacrifice, it is the life of our soul; let us sacrifice all our body, since the soul has arrived as guest. Fortitude is as a sweet cloud, wisdom rains from it, because it was in such a month of fortitude that the Koran arrived. …Wash your hands and your mouth, neither eat nor speak; seek that speech and that morsel which has come to the silent ones.

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Aga Khan Speech Brown University May 1996:

"Looking around this colorful gathering, I recall helping in the choice of the Aga Khan University's regalia. Our research into Islamic traditions of academic dress revealed that an academic's rank determined the height of his hat. The higher the rank, the taller the hat. The senior most professors therefore appeared taller than their students even when sitting down. I have just learnt that my friend Neil Rudenstein, the President of Harvard has given instructions that all Harvard hats are to be heightened by at least a foot. This has caused havoc in the Ivy League which is now debating resolution MAHH96, standing for Maximum Allowable Hat Height. My academic standing and that of President Gregorian, should be evident from the hats that we are presently wearing!"

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