Mawlana Abdol Hamid’s Address at the Opening Ceremony of Zahedan Darul Uloom’s New Academic Year:

Sincerity is one of the most important and great pillars of religion and the source of strength in servitude

Sincerity is one of the most important and great pillars of religion and the source of strength in servitude

Sheikh al-Islam Mawlana Abdol Hamid today, Thursday (May 2, 2024 corresponding to 13 Ordibehesht 1403), in the opening session of the new academic year of Zahedan Darul Uloom, explained the first narration of Sahih al-Bukhari while emphasizing the importance of “sincerity” and the “virtue and necessity of acquiring knowledge.” He also mentioned the difficulties and pressures faced by Sunni religious schools regarding the enrollment of immigrant students. He called upon the authorities to provide opportunities for immigrant students to enroll and study in Sunni religious schools.
According to the report published on the website of the Office of the Friday Imam of Ahl al-Sunnah in Zahedan, Mawlana Abdol Hamid stated in this spiritual gathering: “Before anything else, we must express our gratitude and appreciation to the Almighty. It is also fitting to offer prayers and remember with kindness all those who have provided the opportunity for students to learn in schools.”
“In many religious schools,” he explained, “the academic year begins with the reading and recitation of the first hadith of Sahih Bukhari, with the intention of conveying the importance of hadiths. The message of this hadith is to make our intentions pure for the sake of Allah.”
He added, “In the world, knowledge is sought for various purposes, including fame, wealth, and positions of power. Some people acquire knowledge to obtain an easier job and more income, while knowledge should be acquired for the pleasure of Allah. If knowledge is sought for the pleasure of Allah, the person attains the glorious goal of Allah’s pleasure.”
The director of Zahedan Darul Uloom pointed out, “If knowledge, migration, Hajj, jihad, generosity, and any great deed are not for the sake of Allah and with divine motivation, not only are they wasted and ruined and bring no reward or recompense to the person, but they also become a cause of punishment on the Day of Judgment. Let us examine our hearts and intentions to see with what purpose and motivation we are acquiring knowledge. Students of religious sciences and scholars must rectify their intentions.”

The Virtue of Sincerity
Emphasizing the importance of “sincerity,” he stated: “Sincerity is the spirit of religion and one of the most important and great pillars of religion and the source of strength in servitude. Sincerity and devotion to Allah are beneficial to man. Previous nations were commanded to worship only Allah. Knowledge, religion, and good deeds must be pure for the sake of Allah. A religion without sincerity is like a statue or a body without a soul.”

The Universality of the Prophet’s Message
Referring to the status of the “Companions of the Prophet (may Allah be pleased with them),” he noted: “The Companions of the Prophet (may Allah be pleased with them) were not infallible and committed sins, but the most important characteristic of the Companions of the Prophet (may Allah be pleased with them) is that they did not persist in sin and whenever they committed a sin, they repented and made amends. Wherever in the Quran the errors and slips of the Companions of the Prophet (may Allah be pleased with them) are mentioned, God’s forgiveness is also mentioned.”
Mawlana Abdol Hamid described the mission of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) as “universal,” stating: “The mission of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), the Quran, and religion are not only for believers, but the religion and messages of the Quran and the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) are for all people of the world. Good deeds and sincerity have an impact and may lead to the guidance and repentance of man, and sin, murder, bloodshed, hypocrisy, and ostentation also have an impact and lead to misguidance.”

The Need for Both Religious and Secular Knowledge
Continuing, the director of Zahedan Darul Uloom emphasized the need for both religious and secular education, stating: “Acquiring knowledge is one of the greatest acts of worship. Knowledge is one of the great blessings of the Lord and a source of enlightenment in the world. Religious knowledge and modern knowledge are both beneficial to humanity. Knowledge leads man to the closeness of Allah and the exalted station. When migration, knowledge, jihad, and good deeds are done in obedience to Allah and the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), they are a ‘great triumph.’”
He continued, “Man must be built, and to build man, religious knowledge is needed. Man needs both religious knowledge and modern and secular knowledge to build his world and his hereafter. We must build the world of others. When we seek knowledge to build the world of God’s creation, God will build our world and the hereafter. Without knowledge, man faces absolute failure; He can neither build the world nor the hereafter. So study science to act on it, benefit people and bring God’s religion to the world.
The presence of immigrant students was a blessing for the country; They ought to be supported
In another part of his speech, Sheikh al-Islam Mawlana Abdol Hamid addressed the challenges and obstacles faced by immigrant students in enrolling in Sunni religious schools. He criticized the restrictions imposed on their registration and urged provincial and national officials to resolve the issue.
Mawlana Abdol Hamid expressed concern about the absence of many immigrant students, particularly Afghan students, who had previously studied for years in Sunni religious schools in Sistan-Baluchistan and other parts of the country. He noted that a significant number of these students were expelled from religious schools last year.
He emphasized that preventing individuals from pursuing knowledge is a grave mistake, as it contradicts the Prophet Muhammad’s (peace be upon him) teachings to honor and respect those who come to you to learn knowledge. He highlighted the positive impact of students and scholars traveling for education, stating that their presence brings blessings and averts calamities. He asserted that it is in the best interest of all countries, especially the Islamic Republic of Iran, to cooperate with and address the challenges faced by immigrant students and scholars.
Mawlana Abdol Hamid pointed out that welcoming students and scholars from other countries is a common practice worldwide, and efforts are made to attract them. He expressed disappointment that immigrant students, who were previously tolerated, are now facing restrictions. He emphasized that the presence of these students has been a source of blessing for the country. He said: Although there is criticism on the deportation of immigrant students, we still hope and believe that this door of goodness and mercy should not be blocked.

Discriminations bother us
Mawlana Abdol Hamid also raised concerns about discrimination within the country, stating that: “The discrimination that exists in the country bothers us. The law should be applied equally to everyone. When foreign students, both Shia and Sunni, are allowed to study in Shia seminaries, including Jamia al-Mustafa, why are foreign Sunni students not allowed to study in Sunni religious schools?! We are all Iranians and share Islamic and national brotherhood, there should be justice and equality.” He emphasized, “We hope the issue of immigrant students in Sunni religious schools will be reconsidered. Provincial and national officials should pay attention to this and resolve it so the blessed chain of acquiring knowledge and science between our country and neighboring countries will not be broken.”

Sunni schools are on the path of moderation
The Friday Imam of Zahedan continued his speech by emphasizing “moderation” as the core principle of Sunni religious schools. He said, “Sunni schools are on the path of moderation. We believe in a moderate Islam, and our thoughts extend beyond religion and even Islam itself, encompassing humanity and the well-being of all people. We don’t see ourselves or our religious centers as belonging to a single class.”
He further clarified, “Our schools, scholars, and students are far from extremism and radicalism. They haven’t associated with any extremist groups because our beliefs strongly contradict extremism and fanaticism. We believe in pursuing the path of truth and justice. Therefore, our schools cause no harm and don’t preach against any other religion. The occasional criticisms we give are constructive and aim for goodwill. There’s no animosity, hostility, or stubbornness behind these criticisms.”

What is happening today to the people of Gaza and Rafah is very painful
At the end of his speech, Mawlana Abdol Hamid also mentioned the plight of the people of Palestine and Gaza and said: The issue of Palestine and what is happening in Gaza and Rafah is very painful. These events are unbearable for anyone who has a sense of humanity.
He added: These days, there are protests in the world, especially in universities, against the bloodshed, oppression and displacement that is happening in Palestine. We hope that the Palestinian issue will be resolved in a fair manner.


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