December 13 historical events

On December 13, 2003, Mawlana Hazar Imam attended the foundation ceremony of the first ever Ismaili Centre in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. In his address, Mawlana Hazar Imam said,

“For many centuries, a prominent feature of the Muslim religious landscape has been the variety of spaces of gathering co-existing harmoniously with the masjid, which in itself has accommodated a range of diverse institutional spaces for educational, social and reflective purposes. Historically serving communities of different interpretations and spiritual affiliations, these spaces have retained their cultural nomenclatures and characteristics, from ribat and zawiyya to khanaqa and jamatkhana. The congregational space incorporated within the Ismaili Centre belongs to the historic category of jamatkhana, an institutional category that also serves a number of sister Sunni and Shia communities, in their respective contexts, in many parts of the world. Here, it will be space reserved for traditions and practices specific to the Shia Ismaili tariqa of Islam…. Through its design and functions, this Centre, like its predecessors, will reflect a mood of humility, forward outlook, friendship and dialogue. Above all, this Centre is being conceived in the ethic of respect for human dignity, it will therefore aim to empathise with, and to expand our intellectual, cultural and moral horizon.”

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