AMMAN — Deputising for His Majesty King Abdullah, HRH Prince Ghazi, Chief Adviser to the King for Religious and Cultural Affairs and the King’s Personal Envoy, attended a ceremony on Sunday marking the launch of the Jordan Scholars Association.
In his address, Prince Ghazi noted that Jordan has produced more than its fair share of Islamic scholars but that they did not attain their rightful renown for three main reasons including the Kingdom’s limited resources; the absence of a body in Jordan to support, publish and stand by their works and writings; and a preoccupation among these scholars with their differences.
“The purpose of our gathering here today is the establishment of an association for Jordanian scholars that will support them, spread their work and unite them.”
Highlighting the importance of the initiative as a place to bring scholars together, he said: “My hope is that it will be a place where all scholars meet: Shafiis; Hanbalis; Malikis; Hanafis; Sufis; Salafis; Asharis; Maturidi; scholars of reason; scholars of transmission; strict and tolerant scholars; progressive and traditional scholars; and hawks and doves can all congregate.”
“My vision is for a place where everyone will meet: scholars of the state and scholars with party affiliations; where independent scholars and scholars of the Muslim Brotherhood can all come together,” he added.
Referring to the possibility of differences, he said: “No one expects the scholars to always agree or produce a single opinion or always to reach a consensus; that is almost impossible. What is required is courteous and respectful discussion in a way that accepts the other and the other’s opinion with love and in a manner that preserves the other’s dignity even when disproving a point and when constructive criticism is being offered.”
At the end of his address, Prince Ghazi announced that His Majesty King Abdullah had donated a piece of land to be used to build a permanent home for the association.
Association members should be true scholars recognised as such, or at least hold a master’s degree specialising in one of the sciences of Sharia, the Prince pointed out. see full text of speech.