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.

Pluralism

Beyond Polemics and Pluralism: The Universal Message of the Qur’an — Reza Shah-Kazemi

Behzad's Advice of the Ascetic (c.1500-1550) - Amaana.orgBeyond Polemics and Pluralism: The Universal Message of the Qur’an[1]

— Reza Shah-Kazemi

Editor’s Note: It was a delight to hear Dr. Shah-Kazemi’s lecture on the subject in person yesterday. Please view my picture with him below! Yay! My sincere thanks to Dr. Shah-Kazemi for providing this article and I am honored to present it on the Ismaili Web. Alhamduli’Llah! Please also view video of this presentation made in June 2014 at the end of this article and I just added his presentation at FIU on March 31, 2015. Thank you!

And they say: None entereth Paradise unless he be a Jew or a Christian. These are their vain desires. Say: Bring your proof if ye are truthful.

Nay, but whosoever submitteth his purpose to God, and he is… Continue reading

The Middle East — Prince Aly Khan

H. R. H. Prince Aly Khan - Amaana.org

Speech by Prince Aly Khan in 1951

Lecture by His Serene Highness Prince Aly Khan under the chairmanship of His Worship the Major, councillor Abdulkarim M.L.C., Vice – President of the Dar es Salaam Cultural Society.

30 January 1951

It is indeed ironical that here, in Dar es Salaam, “Haven of peace,” I must speak of war.

That I may speak of war and yet hold bright hopes for peace is due to my strong conviction that growing strength of the Mohamedan world, is staunchly united with Christianity in defence of freedom, may yet prevent, or if not prevent, bring to a victorious conclusion, any war which might be imposed upon us.

The Mohamedan world, the Middle East and Pakistan, is, I submit the hub of the free world’s… Continue reading

Islamic Scholar John Esposito Talks about Faith, Pluralism, and the Challenges Facing Islam Today

Invite (everyone) to the Way of thy Lord with wisdom and beautiful preaching; and argue with them in ways that are best and most gracious - by Nayzak - Amaana.orgInterview – The Forgotten Children of Abraham

by Katherine Schimmel Baki

Calligraphy above — Quran 16:125
ادْعُ إِلَىٰ سَبِيلِ رَبِّكَ بِالْحِكْمَةِ وَالْمَوْعِظَةِ الْحَسَنَةِ ۖ وَجَادِلْهُم بِالَّتِي هِيَ أَحْسَنُ
Invite (everyone) to the Way of thy Lord with wisdom and beautiful preaching; and argue with them in ways that are best and most gracious.
Written in Naskh (green part) and Thuluth (black part) — by Nayzak — Amaana.org

“It is compulsory both in the West and the East to move beyond stereotypes and demonization, to educate the next generation to be global citizens who have a healthy respect for other cultures and religions.” — John L. Esposito

John Esposito - Editor-in-Chief of The Oxford Encyclopedia of the Islamic WorldJohn L. Esposito

There is the well-known Qur’anic verse: A goodly word is like a goodly tree (24:26, Yusuf Ali translation), which my late aunt, Annemarie… Continue reading

Understanding More about Islam — Harvard University

Shahada La ilaha illa Llah, Muhammadun rasulu’Llah There is no God, but one God, and Muhammad is his Prophet - Amaana.org

Understanding More about Islam

 

Harvard Graduate School of Education

October 4, 2001

by Marvin Pittman

“La ilaha illa Llah, Muhammadun rasulu’Llah”

“I witness that there is no God, but one God, and that Muhammad is his prophet.”
—The Shahada, Islam’s Declaration of Faith

As faith plays a strong role in America’s conscience in light of the events of September 11, the American public also focuses now on Islam. Even though an estimated 8-10 million Muslims—made up of people from a wide variety of ethnic backgrounds and national origins—take part in many avenues in American society, the American public at large remains greatly prejudiced against, misunderstanding, and ignorant of Islam.

On October 3, the Harvard Graduate School of Education explored the complex issues surrounding Islam in the panel discussion “Understanding… Continue reading

His Highness the Aga Khan’s Speech to the Parliament of Canada

Aga Khan Addresses Parliament of Canada Feb 27 2014 Amaana.org

 

Address to the Canadian Parliament — Ottawa, Canada

 

February 27, 2014
View video of speech at bottom of text!

 

Bismillah-ir-Rahman-ir-Rahim

 

Mr Prime Minister,
Speaker Kinsella,
Speaker Scheer,
Honourable Members of the Senate and House of Commons,
Chief Justice of the Supreme Court
Honourable Members of the Diplomatic Community
Distinguished Guests,
Ladies and Gentlemen:

 

The Prime Minister’s generous introduction has been very kind. I am grateful for this invitation, for our association, and for so thoughtfully enabling leading representatives of our community and institutions, around the world, to join us on this occasion. I am thankful they will have this opportunity to see for themselves why Canada is a leader in the community of nations.

 

I must also thank you, Prime Minister, for inviting me to… Continue reading

Pluralism and the Quran – Reza Shah-Kazemi

This is an edited version of extracts from speeches delivered by Dr Reza Shah-Kazemi at Milad al-Nabi Celebrations held in Atlanta and San Francisco, USA, in 2007. It first appeared in The Ismaili, USA, 2008.
In the 9th year after the Hijra (631 CE), a prominent Christian delegation from Najran, an important centre of Christianity in the Yemen, came to engage Prophet Muhammad in theological debate in Medina. The main point of contention was the nature of Christ: was he one of the messengers of God or the unique Son of God? What is of importance for our purposes is not the disagreements voiced, nor the fact that the debate was cut short by a revelation instructing the Prophet to challenge the Christians to a mutual imprecation, the mubahala; rather,… Continue reading

Universality of the Quranic Message – Reza Shah-Kazemi

Infinite is the Grace of Allah towards you. - Quran 4:113

 

They are not all alike. Of the People of the Scripture there is a staunch community who recite the revelations of God in the watches of the night, falling prostrate.

 

They believe in God and the Last Day, and enjoin right conduct and forbid indecency, and vie with one another in good works. These are of the righteous.

And whatever good they do, they will not be denied it; and God knows the pious. (Quran 3: 113-114)

Thou wilt find the nearest of them [the People of the Scripture] in affection to those who believe to be those who say: Verily, we are Christians. That is because there are among them priests and monks, and they are not proud. (5: 82)

I believe in whatever scripture God hath… Continue reading

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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99 Beautiful Names

Asma-ul Husna

 

Aga Khan jokes

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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