|Dr. Shihab Ghanem gave a lecture on "Al Fatihah―The Opening Chapter of the Quran"
June 6, 2015, the Institute of Oriental Philosophy (IOP) organized a
lecture titled, “Al Fatihah―The Opening Chapter of the Quran” by Dr.
Shihab M. A. Ghanem and Dr. Waddhah Ghanem held at the Central Tower of
In his speech, Dr. Shihab Ghanem presented some similarities between
Nichiren Buddhism and Islam. He mentioned that, as Buddhism also
suggests, Islam proposes the idea of the eternity of life, the equality
of all life, and emphasizes the importance of harmony and coexistence
with other religions. He went on to explain that in Islam Jihad does
not refer to war or combat but rather to an inner struggle with
Following his speech, Dr. Waddhah Ghanem gave a summary of Al Fatifah, which is the opening chapter of the
Quran. He explained that Al Fatifah has multiple names such as “The
Mother of the Quran,” “The Seven Oft-repeated Ones,” “The Complete
One,” “The One that Suffices,” and “The Curing One,” indicating that it
is the most essential part of the Quran. He also mentioned that Al
Fatifah praises and appreciates Allah as the source of absolute and
infinite mercy and recognizes Allah as king, master, or sovereign on
the Day of Judgement. He added that we human beings have desires and
can easily be swayed by the negative forces within us, but that Allah
guides us to the correct path.
In a question and answer session, Dr. Waddhah Ghanem commented that
mankind was created as a collective and that we cannot live on our own,
which is why Islam teaches us to contribute to society. Therefore,
whatever is good for society is considered good for individuals.
To the question of the meaning of prayer in Islam, Dr. Shihab Ghanem
replied that through prayer, we can directly communicate with Allah and
cleanse ourselves. He stressed that we must always remember that God
sees us even if we do not see him. Dr. Waddhah said that God created a
spirit and gave it to man. In this sense, we all have God’s spirit, and
all human beings are therefore equal.
Dr. Shihab M. A. Ghanem is a poet, translator and scholar from Dubai,
UAE. To date, he has published over 50 books, including 14 collected
poems in Arabic, a collected poem in English and 20 collected poems
translated from English to Arabic and Arabic to English. Dr. Ghanem
also directed and worked on the Arabic edition of SGI President Ikeda’s
book, Fighting for Peace (Dubai, 2014). He carries out research on Al
Fatihah togetherwith his son, Dr. Waddhah S. Ghanem.
|Organizer: The Institute of Oriental Philosophy (IOP)
Lecturer: Dr. Shihab M. A. Ghanem and Dr. Waddhah S. Ghanem
Venue: Soka University, Central Tower
Date: June 6, 2015