A Nigerian scholar described the existence of Takfiri currents as the main challenge on the path of achieving Muslim unity.
AhlulBayt News Agency (ABNA): Sheikh Mohammad Saleh al-Thani, the secretary general of the Rasool Azam (PBUH) Foundation in Kano, Nigeria, underlined the significance of unity in the Islamic world.
He said those who invite Muslims to get united act very judiciously and prudently because discord in today’s world is the biggest threat to all Islamic denominations.
He added that fomenting disunity is among the priorities of the enemies and there is no way to counter the enemy plots other than promoting proximity among Islamic schools of thought.
Sheikh al-Thani referred to verse 46 of Surah al-Anfal of the Holy Quran, “Obey Allah and His Messenger and do not dispute with one another lest you should lose courage and your resolve weaken. Have patience Allah is with those who are patient”, and said that in this verse, God warns Muslims not to move toward disunity.
As for the grounds for strengthening Islamic unity, he said Muslims should focus on the common concepts among the Islamic schools of thought.
Muslims, who constitute a quarter of the world’s population and possess great manpower and enormous economic and natural resources can use these assets as well as their intellectual and religious capacities to advance unity and overcome the enemies of unity.
The Nigerian cleric also cited verse 2 of Surah al-Ma’idah “And cooperate in righteousness and warding off (evil), and do not cooperate in sinfulness and transgression. Have fear of Allah, for Allah is Stern in retribution,” saying the Quran invites all Muslims to cooperate and help one another.
He referred to the Seerah of the Ahl-ul-Bayt (AS), including Imam Ali (AS) and his cooperation with the Caliphs based on righteousness and warding off (evil), and said the Imams (AS) taught Muslims the best lesson in terms of Islamic unity.
He also highlighted the importance of fraternity and accord among scholars and thinkers from different Islamic denominations.
Asked about challenges on the path of achieving unity, Sheikh al-Thani said the phenomenon of Takfir, which is rooted in ignorance and prejudice, is the main obstacle.
He said there are extremist Takfiri groups among all denominations and their ideologies have led to killings and Fitnas (seditions) in different parts of the Muslim world, including in Syria, Somalia, and Nigeria.
Elsewhere in his remarks, the cleric regretted that many media outlets in the Muslim world have been serving attempts to foment discord and sedition, stressing that the Muslim world media should work to bolster unity by raising awareness among people.