JEDDAH: ARAB NEWS
Monday 1 October 2012
Last Update 5 October 2012 5:45 pm
Crown Prince Salman, deputy premier and minister of defense, has stressed the need for moderation to contain the current crisis in the Muslim world.
“Moderation is not something that can be achieved through words. It is not a mere slogan but a total path and commitment to a principle that will achieve general welfare aimed at the goodness and growth (of the people),” Prince Salman said during a series of lectures on “moderation in the life of King Abdul Aziz” at King Abdulaziz University in Jeddah on Saturday.
He said moderation encompasses all aspects of life including eating, talking, education, spending and dealings with people.
He said it was by sticking to the principle of moderation that King Abdul Aziz managed to sidestep the schemes of colonial powers who were tracking his activities and trying to foil his effort to re-establish the kingdom.
“The late king succeeded in establishing the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia far removed from regional calculations or foreign influence and in keeping his people and country away from woes of the world wars,” the prince said.
Prince Salman said the late king adopted a moderate policy filled with wisdom, patience and reason at a time when some citizens were skeptical about the need to adopt beneficial modern technology.
“The late king pardoned his rivals and then they became his closest men. He was patient with his opponents because their views about the future were flawed. The king explained to them and convinced them how his views were better for their welfare,” he said.
Prince Salman said the king was also moderate in his religion. “He was not extreme or negligent in religious matters.”
“A life devoid of religion but filled with various other forces is not a real life. On the other hand, real life starts with religion, adherence to it and establishing the law of Allah,” King Abdul Aziz said, according to a report published by the Umm Al-Qura daily in 1937.
The prince continued: “To learn the significance of the moderation followed by King Abdul Aziz, we should read the history of the leaders who adopted an extremist stance in their policies and decisions which exposed their countries to wars and turmoil or because of their following personal whims or fleeting man-made ideologies.”
The prince also called on students to adhere to a moderate path in their thinking and activities “because it is the right way.”
“King Abdul Aziz engaged in dialogues to convince his rivals and opponents. On such occasions the king was committed to Islam and he was content with following the ways of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him). He did not go to extremes or create split, nor was he harsh,” the prince said.
The path followed by the Saudi government is based on the principles of moderation adopted by King Abdul Aziz because the rulers are keen to protect citizens from any kind of injustice, Prince Salman said.
“The founder of the Kingdom used to say that every citizen who feels that he has been unjustly treated should come forward with his complaint even if it is against any of my sons or grandsons,” the prince said.
“The moderation is the principle that governs our religious and worldly matters and that is because our straightforward religion of Islam says in the Holy Qur’an “we thus established you as a nation pursuing the path of moderation,” the crown prince said.
He also quoted the saying of the Prophet (pbuh) reiterating the importance of moderation in Islam. “The Prophet (pbuh) said: ‘Beware of excesses because those before you were destroyed because of their excess’,” Prince Salman quoted another authentic hadith warning against taking an extreme positions in any matter.
“The founder King Abdul Aziz implemented the path of moderation following in the footsteps of our Prophet (pbuh) and the succeeding generations. The king was moderate in his stands, views and policies. This great unity that we all enjoy today is because of that,” he said.
“The king kept to the path of moderation while re-establishing the Saudi state on the same principles upon which the first Islamic state and first Saudi state and the second state were established,” he added.
The crown prince continued: “The king never took risks or was reckless with the lives of others whether they were his companions or rivals.”
Despite his success in the unification of the country with the blessings of the Almighty, and the support of men in different parts of the country, he never took revenge or was spiteful to any one. “He was moderate and content with what he achieved, keeping himself busy with maintaining the law and order and ensuring welfare for all,” he said.
The late king also appointed people who had qualities of outstanding moderation at responsible positions. “Today, we are badly in need of moderation to withstand the floods and currents of the changes and attempts to change our concepts disfiguring facts, and influencing others with misleading and deceptive information that are in reality against the public interest and untrue,” the crown prince warned.
Prince Salman also stressed the need to apply the principles of real moderation in our culture and views and not to be overcome by emotion.
“The official gazette Umm Al-Qura quoted the late king as saying: ‘I am very much pained when I see people deviate from the straight path and listening to devil’s whispering. But no doubt the public welfare is above all other interests’,” the prince said.
“Our interests today are the same interests we had yesterday because our fundamental principles did not change even though some people’s thoughts and style of interacting with the affairs of their life have undergone changes,” he continued.
“Our moderation today is not less important than our moderation yesterday in the backdrop of increasing challenges and temptations. Some people are groping aimlessly and some are imitating other people outside our environment, society and religion,” he said.
Moderation is needed because it helps us to benefit from modern scientific advancements but within the framework of our religion and values, the crown prince said.
It is also required to preserve the country where the revelation to the Prophet (pbuh) occurred and the Qiblah (direction of prayer) of the Muslims is situated, he said.
The country is also the starting point of pan-Arabism and Islam. “The country’s constitution is the Holy Qur’an and Sunnah of the Prophet (pbuh). Moderation in its path, stands and views is based on clear Islamic principles,” he said.
Prince Salman pondered the plight of Arab nationalist sentiments. “They did not survive because they were standing on false foundations and had nothing to do with Islam and its values but was contradictory to religious values.
“Our country is the starting point of pan-Arabism and Islam as the Holy Qur’an was revealed in Arabic to an Arab prophet. The country’s sons undertook to spread the Islamic message to all parts of the world at the Almighty’s orders.
“We have been honored by Allah with the opportunity to serve the Two Holy Mosques,” the crown prince said. “We have been honored by Allah with the opportunity to serve Arab and Muslim people. That service is undertaken with real moderation based on the principles of the religion and not for any personal motives.”
He said all material resources of the Kingdom are not as great as the creed of Islam that prevails in the country and also not as valuable as the devoted men and women who are sincere to their religion and their Ummah.
“Our country has been deploying its material and non-material resources to not only for the welfare of the people in the Arab and Muslim worlds but to the advantage of the world at large,” the crown prince said.
“We have been following a foreign policy of moderation since the time of King Abdul Aziz and his supporters. Our friendship with all people is moderate and our first priority is to the Arab and Islamic Ummah,” he added.
He told the audience that the prosperity, unity, stability and security of the Kingdom was a matter of envy of others. “On this occasion, I call upon students, my sons and daughters, to be committed to moderation in all their thoughts and deeds because it is the right path Allah has paved for us in the world of various ideologies,” the prince continued.
“The country has stood on the principle of moderation since its foundation more than 270 years ago,” the prince said, adding that it has been following the same principle during the reigns of King Abdul Aziz, King Saud, King Faisal, King Khaled, Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Fahd and Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah.
The crown prince also stressed the need for the present generation to be committed to the principle of moderation.
He reminded the audience of what King Abdul Aziz had said of injustice and corruption. Any official who attempted to dissuade any citizen who had a complaint or lessen its seriousness will be severely punished, the late king had ordered.
“In my lifetime, I do not wish to hear of an injustice or for Allah to hold me responsible for an injustice or burden of another person, or for not rescuing an unjustly treated man or safeguarding the right of an oppressed man. I have delivered the message. O Allah, be my witness, we will tread on this path and safeguard it by the grace of God,” the prince concluded.
Makkah Gov. Prince Khaled Al-Faisal; Prince Sultan bin Salman, president of the Saudi Commission for Tourism & Antiquities; Higher Education Minister Khaled Al-Anqari and President of the King Abdul Aziz University Osama Taib also attended the event.
Arab News is not responsible for the view points, opinions and actions expressed by online commenters. Individual posts do not reflect Arab News' points of view or opinion, and abusive content will be removed