ir-Rahman ir-Raheem was-salaat was salaam `ala man laa nabiyya ba`dah, Sayyidina
Muhammadin wa `ala alihi wa sahbihi was sallam ila yawm al-din
Seeking God’s Light in the Children of Adam
Shaykh Muhammad Nazim Adil al-Haqqani al-Muhammadi's speech for the occasion of the UN Millennium World Peace Summit for Religious and Spiritual Leaders
Our Lord Almighty said, “O
mankind! Be careful of your duty to your Lord Who created you from a single soul
and from it created its mate and from them twain hath spread abroad a multitude
of men and women. Be careful of your duty toward Allah in Whom ye claim (your
rights) of one another, and toward the wombs (that bare you). Lo! Allah hath
been a watcher over you.” [Quran, 4: 1]
believers, men, women, and all of humanity, I greet you with the Islamic words
of greeting, “peace be upon you.”
are gathered here today, at the prestigious United Nations, to address humanity
with the issue of World Peace. This is indeed a holy day, for even the name of
this place, the “United” Nations, symbolizes our unity as members of the
human race. Almighty Allah, our Creator, our Sustainer, our Lord is looking upon
us seeing human beings of all ages,
races, nations, and religions gathered together on this day.
we arrived at this auspicious event, we were each granted a tag with a very
dignified title: Shaykh, Bishop, Cardinal, Grand Imam, Grand Rabbi. These are
very respectable titles that we are quite happy to append to ourselves. I am
quite happy also, to have such a tag.
is an honor to be given an earthly title. Yet consider how much more of an honor
it would be to receive a heavenly one. Every individual has been assigned a
heavenly position, but there is one that is far better than all the others. It
is ‘Servant,’ `Abd, which means to
be servant to the Lord. Whoever seeks to be servant to the Lord will be granted
a reward far greater than a man-made title.
gathered to discuss how humanity can work toward world peace, we are here not to
flaunt our earthly stations, but to find and exemplify the levels granted to us
by God. If we, as spiritual and religious figures, can leave this meeting having
fortified our efforts with awareness of our roles in the Divine Plan, we will
become like beacons of peace, like great lights walking on earth.
and humility are the keys to achieving unity and contentment for our race.
Indeed, if we were servants to one another, showing respect and humility before
one another, there would be no need for such a gathering. Yet many abandon
humility and respect for their fellows, allowing trouble to develop between them
and spread all over the world.
human tendency to behave this way is by no means new. The son of the first man
on earth, Cain son of Adam, killed his own brother. His act marked the beginning
of a dangerous tradition that has been carried from generation to generation,
steadily growing worse. Knowing this, Allah Almighty said in the Holy Quran, the
that cause, We decreed for the Children of Israel that whosoever killeth a human
being for other than manslaughter or corruption in the earth, it shall be as if
he had killed all mankind.
[Quran: 5, 32]
is the story of the last century, a century filled with death, murder, war,
destruction, savagery and tyranny. In the last century, it was as if we saw the
death of all humankind, for recent wars have led to the death of more people
than populated the entire earth, in earlier times – one hundred million, two
hundred million, half a billion. Yet still there is the hope and life that
exists in remembering God.
|The Summit held in the UN General Assembly was filled with over 1500 religious and spiritual leaders from across the globe. Mawlana As-Sayyid Shaykh Muhammad Nazim Adil al-Haqqani al-Muhammadi, world leader of the Naqshbandi-Haqqani Sufi Order and President of the World Conference on Religion and Peace, represented the Muslim faith.|
are gathered here today – priests, rabbis, imams, shaykhs, leaders of our
spiritual and religious communities – to pray that the new century, and the
new millennium, will bring the fulfillment of the following verse:
whoso saveth the life of one, it shall be as if he had saved the life of all
[Quran: 5, 33]
this reason we hope this meeting will be blessed.
the Prophet of Islam, peace and blessings be upon him, said:
his brother of a trial or a difficulty in this life, God will relieve him of a
trial in the next life.”
each other is the true essence of brotherhood. When Cain killed his blood
brother Abel, he replaced brotherhood with hatred and enmity. If we can leave
this enmity and hatred and replace it with love for the common good, we will
return to the original state of brotherhood, regardless of blood ties, and
achieve unity and harmony.
is a part of the message of Islam. It is not a new message, but one that has
been repeated for thousands of years. Just as your television receives a regular
transmission, broadcasting information on every channel, so God’s message is a
delivered again and again. The transmission permeates all channels, all aspects
of life, all periods of time, stopping only when the receiver, the television,
the person, is turned off.
us leave the television on and listen for the message our Creator is repeating
for us to hear and obey. If we do not obey, it is indeed dangerous for us. For
example, cigarette packages around the world prominently display messages such
as, “smoking is dangerous to your health.” It is repeated on every carton,
so everyone reads the message, but few care to heed it. Many thousands die from
smoking every year.
Religious and spiritual representatives from a variety of faiths filled the UN General Assembly hall.
is now as if the entire world is smoking, and the health of the entire planet is
suffering. Species are disappearing, forests, jungles, and whole habitats are
vanishing. The ice at the north and south poles is dissolving, and the infamous
hole in the ozone is causing numerous tragedies to occur. The message is being
repeated, again and again, but no one cares, continuing to smoke and causing
harm throughout the world.
Muhammad, peace and blessings upon him said, “laa darar wa laa diraar fil-Islam,”
“neither harm nor reciprocation of harm is permitted in Islam.” Causing harm
is forbidden, and everything harmful is prohibited. He also said, “al-Muslim
man salima an-muslimoon min yadihi
wa lisanihi,” “the Muslim is a person from whose hand and tongue Muslims
are safe.” This is the definition of a Muslim, or anyone who submits to the
Way of God. It is of no benefit for a person who does not meet this description
to say that he or she follows in the Way of God. It is therefore not in the Way
of God to commit acts of terror. Anyone who claims that terrorism is a part of
Islam, Christianity, Judaism, Hinduism, or any religion is mistaken; no one can
demonstrate this to be true. Once again, if we would leave terror and obey our
religion, the message sent by God, we would attain peace, safety and harmony.
all of humanity, I urge you to seek out the essence of your religion, then obey
it, as it will be your vehicle to safety. Obey your Lord, because your Lord and
our Lord are One God. If we all obey as we have been taught, there will be no
more suffering, no fighting, no hatred and no killing.
we must reconcile with one another. Last year, a group of Christians came to the
Holy Land to seek reconciliation. They said, “We came to apologize. Our
forefathers killed your forefathers, calling it a crusade in the name of Jesus,
but we know that was wrong. We apologize for their actions.” This is the way
of Jesus, peace be upon him. If we followed the ways of our holy ones, we would
find a peace such as no one has ever believed could exist. For there to be
peace, all people must also apologize and emphasize that anyone who killed using
the name of God was by no means justified in doing so.
Holy Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) returned to his hometown of Mecca
after its people had tortured him and his followers, cast him out, and made war
against him. When he returned he came with a great army of 124,000 soldiers. He
addressed the chief of Makka and the people who were gathered, asking, “O
people of Quraish, what do you expect from me today?” They replied, “Only
the best from a noble brother and the son of a noble brother.” The Prophet
said, “Depart, for today you are all free!” That is our principle – no
revenge, no harm, no retribution. For despite the persecution and torture his
followers had suffered, and despite the law providing for retribution of injury,
the Prophet held to a higher moral standard.
if they incline to peace, then incline to it and trust in Allah; surely He is
the Hearing, the Knowing.
Therefore it is our duty to
create the conditions for peace and to seek it out. World
peace cannot be achieved unless humanity returns to the essence of all
religions: mutual respect, forgiveness, and love.
us look at this century with new eyes, with eyes that see one another with love.
Let us recall that God fashioned each and every one of us with His Hands, and
blew into each and every one of us from His Spirit. Can anyone seek to harm the
Spirit of God? They would be only harming themselves, for it is a reality that
our world is one world and what happens to others affects us all. This is why
the Prophet, peace be upon him, said:
are like one body, when one part becomes weak, the whole body suffers.”
if nations look at each other as
one body, each part strengthening the other, will we see a cure to our
illnesses: spiritual, social, economic and political. If one country is weak,
others will suffer, and global confusion and distress will be the result. Those
nations with strong economies must support those that are weak, in order to
build global strength. Those legions of unemployed and underpaid people, who
have families dependent on them, must be helped. By feeding them, we prevent the
creation of angry unemployed armies, ready for satan’s service. This can only
have a good result, where all nations of the world will feel strong together.
For as Allah said:
humankind! We created you from a single pair of a male and female, and made you
into nations and tribes that you may know and deal with one another in kindness
... Verily the most honored of you in the sight of God is the most righteous of
you, and God is Knower, Aware.
conclude by asking that each and every one of us seek to emulate the perfected
character of the holy ones, Prophets and Messengers and Perfected ones who have
gone before us. They attained perfection by holding to the reason of their
creation: servanthood to the Lord, Allah, our Sovereign Creator through
Eternity. In so doing, we will find not only peace, but love and brotherhood.
Let us leave this gathering and return to our peoples saying, “I met many
human beings. I forgave all of them and asked them to forgive me. I asked them
what I could do for them, and they responded, ‘love us as your brothers and
sisters, from the sons and daughters of Adam and Eve.’
Further coverage of the Millenium Peace Summit
Peace Summit Website