Makkah - MWL
The World Affairs Council in Los Angeles hosts the Secretary General of the Muslim World League
The World Affairs Council and the City Council in Los Angeles, USA, hosted the Secretary-General of the Muslim World League, Chairman of the Organization of Muslim Scholars, Sheikh Dr. Muhammad bin Abdulkarim Al-Issa in a webinar attended by more than a thousand personalities interested in intellectual and political issues on the relationship between followers of religions and cultures.
The Council Chair, Mrs. Kim McCleary Blue, welcomed Dr. Al-Issa, praising the global role played by the Muslim World League in dialogue, understanding and cooperation between followers of religions and cultures, confronting hatred and intolerance, and promoting integration and coexistence within diverse societies.
The Director of the webinar, Director of Global Social Works for the Simon Wiesenthal Center, Abraham Cooper, welcomed Sheikh Al-Issa, appreciated and reviewed the efforts he made internationally on behalf of the Muslim World League in this regard.
Then Dr. Al-Issa in his speech, thanked the organizers of the webinar, praising Los Angeles as a place rich in diversity that enhances its distinction, and praising the attendance and global influence of the center.
Dr. Al-Issa spoke about the importance of dialogue between East and West on the one hand, and on the other hand, the importance of dialogue within a single community between national diversity, based on its commonalities, whether they are national, humanitarian or related to moral values in general.
He stressed that ambiguity and lack of trust between followers of civilizations and cultures undermine any attempts to create harmony between them, and lead to societal division and may lead to violence within national societies, especially those of diversity.
Then he explained the concept of moderation and how it can spread peace and harmony among all, warning against the attempt by extremists of any religion, thought or ideology to spread hatred and the resulting repercussions.
He talked about the relations that the Muslim World League had established with various international religious institutions and personalities, which prepared them to go to Sri Lanka to heal the wounded in the terrorist operation in 2019, and to visit the Auschwitz camp in Poland at the head of an Islamic delegation of senior Muslim scholars from various Islamic countries, and from various sect.
He indicated that the approach of the Muslim World League to work is based on bridging negative differences, which enabled it, for example, to hold the Charter of Makkah conference in 2019, which was approved by 1200 scholars from 139 countries representing 27 Islamic sects.
Then he touched upon the peace and solidarity agreement signed by the leaders of the three religions in France with their various sects, which was called by the Muslim World League and was signed in Paris in 2019, affirming that the agreement contains operational programs and bilateral meetings to promote common values between the followers of the three religions.
He pointed out that the Muslim World League is not a political party, but it believes in the right of every state to enjoy sovereignty over its decisions, and opposes interference in the internal affairs of states, explaining that countries are bound by an international organization, which is the United Nations, which has its international charters, treaties and international.
Dr. Al-Issa said that the Muslim World League has signed cooperation agreements with a number of religious and intellectual organizations to achieve common goals, spread peace and coexistence in human societies, and confront advocates of hatred and racism.
Regarding women in Islam, he said that Muslim women have enjoyed status since the beginning of Islam, and that any violation of their rights does not represent Islam but rather its doers. He made clear that religious extremism is based on false ideas and their falsehood must be explained, stressing that the military confrontation with terrorism, despite its great importance, is not sufficient on its own. Rather, it must be confronted intellectually to expose the falsehood of the theses on which it feeds.
He expressed the cooperation of the Muslim World League with all religious leaders and centers of thought and civilizational communication around the world. Dr. Al-Issa stressed that the Muslim World League is keen on working to communicate with young people in particular, as it met hundreds of influential youth in the Islamic and non-Islamic world.
Sheikh Al-Issa continued saying: "We met hundreds of Indonesian youth and youth from neighboring countries, both Muslims and non-Muslims, before the Corona pandemic. It was a very wonderful and inspiring meeting for the rest of the youth, and this is only one of the last examples. In that meeting, we noticed that the celebrities of those young people in social media transmitted the discussions and recommendations that took place. There is no doubt that the bet on the youth is very important, whether in terms of their influence, or in terms of their being the next future for their homelands and humanity as a whole."
Dr. Al-Issa said: "The Corona pandemic taught us the great importance of unity when facing threats that put us all at risk. Epidemics, such as terrorism, know no international borders and do not offer any immunity to any religion, race or belief. So, our victory depends on cooperation between us. Hand in hand, we must build a safer and more prosperous world for future generations, a world in which individuals are not killed in their mosques, churches or temples, a world that embraces our diversity, a world in which our contributions are valued."
He added that our world cannot overcome evil or ignorance that wants to divide us, and wants to make our religious and cultural diversity a tool for conflict and clash. It cannot overcome this except through effective dialogue and real comprehension of the great divine way which dictates the inevitability of difference and diversity among human beings, and that the logic of justice in all its meanings and connotations is a pillar of human happiness.
He added: "The Noble Quran has affirmed all these meanings in more than one explicit verse on this matter, but extremism does not stop at it, and if it reads it, it tries to distort its meaning, and in most cases it prefers not to review it. If we want to strengthen our presence in the group of the good, the wise, the reformers and the peacemakers, we should be honest with ourselves and with others, truly comprehending the wisdom of our diversity, and how this should support our unity as one human family, and then reinforce our love and tolerance for one another, and these common human values are the way to deliver our world from the evils of hatred, racism, extremism, violence and terrorism, whatever its identity. We must teach our children these values to be automatic behavior in their personality stemming from their pure conscience and their normal mind."
He explained that the lack of awareness represents a great dilemma around the world, pointing out that education devoid of knowledge and effective educational programs does not enhance intellectual and behavioral awareness, hence family and education are important in promoting awareness, which benefits national states and relations between nations and peoples in general.
He also stressed the importance of understanding the inevitability of religious, intellectual and civilizational diversity as an important pillar in accepting the other and the success of dialogue and exchanging with it, noting that the results of the civilizational clash are extremely dangerous and that the wise should avoid them sooner by all means of avoiding, including strengthening the role of the family, education and all relevant civil society institutions, foremost among which is the national integration institutions in the countries of diversity, which do not operate efficiently except through preparation, persuasion and polarization, not imposition or contempt and threats.
He cautioned that the real dilemma of these institutions is not often in the efficiency of their legislations, but in the efficiency of their executive tools that are capable of spreading patriotism and humanity in them. He noted that division is a broad concept that affects friendship and harmony between nations and peoples in general, as well as within national states in particular, affirming that sincerity and integration between international and national institutions are the cornerstone in avoiding and resolving international or national division.
He went on saying: "Racism, hatred and the domination of material interests at the expense of justice and values are considered the greatest threat to the peace of our world and the harmony of our societies. These evils represent the raw materials for the manufacture of all evil, including the international or national division, and for this, all international and national legislation must take into account the circumstances of each country, and that these legislations must be strong and effective that address their general and detailed crises while constantly monitoring their developments.
After that, the dialogue opened with Dr. Al-Issa, which dealt with a number of issues related to the themes of the meeting.
It is noteworthy that the Simon Wiesenthal Center is considered one of the leading centers in the human right and intellectual field, and previously hosted 250 heads of state, including eight US presidents in addition to parliamentary and intellectual leaders.