In promoting the sanctity of human life, the Qur'an-e Shariff says that good health, like knowledge, is a divine gift. The family unit nurtures the lives of its members, assisting them in their physical and spiritual endeavours. The wellbeing of individuals, in-turn, contributes to the overall health of the family, and that of society at large.
Indian Vice-President Shri M. Venkaiah Naidu received Mawlana Hazar Imam at Hyderabad House in New Delhi on 21 February 2018 where he hosted a lunch in Hazar Imam’s honour. The meeting was an opportunity to discuss the longstanding partnership between India and the Ismaili Imamat.
The Jamat of the Far East came together in the spirit of unity to showcase their athletic skills at the annual Sports Festival.
All inventions have historical origins and evolve with time and new technologies.
What part did we as Ismailis and as Muslim Ummah play in history?
This question was answered by a small play entitled ' Darkness to Shine ' which focused on Muslim heritage, and was organised by AKEB Uganda and the Jubilee Programs and Activities Task force Uganda on Saturday, 25 November at La Bonita theatre.
The aim of this stage play was to raise awareness of the huge contribution of scientists and philosophers and link the current work of Imamat and AKDN to this rich and powerful history.
The play depicted that the first person to realise that light enters the eye, rather than leaving it, was the 10th-century Muslim mathematician, astronomer and physicist Ibn al-Haitham, who invented the first pin-hole camera after noticing the way light came through a hole in window shutters. The smaller the hole, the better the picture, he worked out, and set up the first Camera Obscura (from the Arab word qamara for a dark or private room). He is also credited with being the first man to shift physics from a philosophical activity to an experimental one.
The play was highly effective in changing perceptions about Muslim Civilisation and helped promote appreciation by celebrating the Muslim heritage.
Several inventors were depicted for instance - Avicenna which is the Latinized version of the name “Ibn Sina” whose full form is Abu Ali al-Ḥusayn ibn Abd Allah ibn Sina, who wrote several important works on medicine such as” Al-Qanoon fial-Tibb” or “The Laws of Medicine” which comprises 14 volumes and was used as the standard medical textbook in both Europe and the Islamic empire up until the 17th century.
The play demonstrated that without the knowledge and influence of these great people, our world wouldn’t be what it is today.
The work of these inventors, still has a major impact in our day-to-day lives, and we see that in the system of numbering used in all round the world, and which first appeared in print in the work of the Muslim mathematicians al-Khwarizmi and al-Kindi around 825. Algebra was named after al-Khwarizmi's book, Al-Jabr wa-al-Muqabilah, much of whose contents are still in use.
Amongst other scenes, the first educational institution al-Karaouine, was also brought to the stage - This Institution was founded by an African Muslim woman named Fatima al-Fihri in Fes, Morocco in 859 and is believed to have attracted some of the leading scholars as well as the land’s brightest students.
At al-Karaouine, students were taught by teachers for a number of years in a variety of subjects ranging from secular to religious sciences.
In current day, there are misconceptions about the role of women in Islam but this play showed the audience, that Muslim women have been transforming society for over 12 centuries.
The stage costumes were thoughtfully designed for the Ismaili Youth, ECD and older students who carried the historical look well and the characters cleverly portrayed the importance of education in Islam. With seamless set changes - this was an excellent performance capturing every moment beautifully. The play ended with a talented modern day 15 year-old Ismaili Rap artist whose flow and delivery summarised the contribution and influence of these great people without whom, we would not be where we are today. The Directors of this play and their entire team put in obvious effort and got their message across and let’s hope that we see more of these productions.
Please view the resources available to the Jamat for the USA Mulaqat in March 2018.