Imam-i-Kaaba’s message of unity

BEING home to Islam’s holiest sites, people of Pakistan hold leaders and religious personalities of Saudi Arabia in high esteem. The same spirit was seen during the visit of Imam-i-Kaaba Sheikh Saleh Bin Muhammad Ibrahim and Saudi Religious Affairs Minister Sheikh Saleh Bin Abdul Aziz who held interactions not only with the political leadership but also the common people as Imam-i-Kaaba led prayers at multiple places. While talking highly about Pakistan as well as bilateral relations between Islamabad and Riyadh, Imam-i-Kaaba also pinpointed some of the most serious challenges faced by the Ummah today and also suggested unity as panacea of all ills, though difficult but not impossible to achieve, to steer the Muslim world out of present crises.
The message given by Sheikh Saleh is something that one keeps witnessing in physical form at Kabah and the Prophet’s Mosque. On every prayer call at Makkah and Medina, the Muslims of all hue and colour throng the holiest mosques showing no signs of sectarian, ethnic and other differences to offer prayers behind one Imam. This demonstration of unity and brotherhood is something that we do not find or see at the worship place of any other religion. Instead of following the same spirit in their home countries, the Muslim visitors as soon as step outside the holy land regrettably again wear the dress of sectarianism. This attitude has adversely affected the Islamic world as the enemy uses it as a weapon to sow the seeds of discord amongst the followers of Islam. In his Friday sermon at Nowshera, Imam-i-Kaaba gave a pertinent message to all the Muslims to shun sectarianism and not engage in any rifts or controversies on such lines. This statement of Imam-i-Kaaba explicitly sends the message that military alliance formed by Saudi Arabia is not sectarian in nature but against terrorism and secondly his words that those promoting sectarianism will not find absolution in the hereafter carries a message for religious scholars of all schools of thought to preach unity to shun the divide as any attempt to divide the Ummah has only served the motives and strengthened hands of anti-Islam forces. Allah Almighty in Surah Al-Imran says: “And hold firmly to the rope of Allah all together and do not become divided.” Given the current situation in different parts of the world where blood of Muslims is being spilled as a worthless thing, we believe that religious scholars have great responsibility to inculcate the real teachings of Holy Quran and the Holy Prophet (Peace Be Upon Him) amongst Muslims. This definitely will help to replicate the kind of unity that we see only at Kaaba and the Prophet’s Mosque. While avoiding sectarianism, scholars and intellectuals should spread the true message of Islam, which is totally based on love, brotherhood, forgiveness and love for humanity. By doing so, they will be doing great service to the Ummah and shut the doors for anti-Islam forces to create cracks amongst the ranks and files of Muslims. As the Saudi leadership has taken the lead to form a military alliance against terrorism, we expect that the Imams of Kaaba and the Prophet’s Mosque to whom the Muslims always look for guidance, also form an across-the-board alliance of Muslim scholars to fight the cancerous disease of sectarianism. Under their guidance, the members of this forum or alliance should work within their respective countries as well as visit other Muslim countries, meet political and religious leaders and different segments of society in order to cultivate the seeds of love and brotherhood. Given the public influence they enjoy, the scholars can also extend help to Muslim countries to sort out their differences in amicable manner. This forum should also look into the curriculum being taught to young generation at different levels and suggest such reforms in the syllabus that infuses true spirit of Islam amongst the young lot. Such a course, we understand, can prove to be the first step towards spiritual and material progress of the Muslim world.

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