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Series of Dialogue and Tolerance (1)    

The Lectures of His Eminence Sayed Abdullah Al-Ghuraifi




His Eminence Sayed Abdullah Al-Ghuraifi delivered a speech at Imam Al-Sadeq (a.s) Mosque on July 19, 2018, in the town of Al-Quful, Bahrain, in which he raised several questions around the efficiency of the current solutions proposed for countering sectarian and social tensions, and addressed political crises and intractable disputes. The speech raised questions on different positions that provide their visions on rapprochement, as a means to solving these tensions, conflicts, and disputes.

In his speech, Al-Ghuraifi stresses that “the absence of the language of rapprochement and dialogue between sectarian, political, and social components in the nation” would lead to “fueling hatred, enmities, differences, and conflicts”, which would naturally result in “intensifying the division and the separation between the components, affiliations, and loyalties within one country”. 

This vision is based on a fundamental foundation that affirms that “the nation needs a rhetoric message which would be based on a language of compassion, mutual understanding, and recognition of the specificities of all components”. Based on real-life facts, and by taking them into account, Al-Ghuraifi stresses that “the nation is in need of the language of compassion and tolerance, and the language of harmony and rapprochement”, and it is the duty of everyone to work on finding an appropriate mechanism for managing differences based on “intellectual beliefs, sectarian affiliations, and political positions amongst citizens”.

In the same speech, Al-Ghuraifi determines the roots of the crisis stating that “failing to manage religious, political, social, or even economic in a nation” could potentially result in “tensions and unrest, which are  natural results of the existence of disagreements, disputes, and enmities”.This, in turn, leads to a clear conclusion on the importance of “rapprochement and tolerance, for the sake of societal well being and public disclosure”, which is a necessary choice “for avoiding the accumulation of mistakes, the generation of crises, and for the nation to be positively healed from all political crises”.

The importance of this speech, and what could be outlined from other speeches of Al-Ghuraifi, is that it stems from a complete acknowledgement and a vigorous sensation of all the details of the rugged path and the deep wounds that spread in Bahrain since 2011. Al-Ghuraifi is aware of these bleeding maps, he is in direct contact with its smallest details, and due to this, he adopts his clear path of opening a window that would allow him to perceive the situation from different lenses, which would be more capable of extending the path of hope, and of providing possible arrangements for reaching social wellbeing, and paving the way forward for political reconciliation in Bahrain.

In this series, we intend to highlight the importance of presenting the vision of Al-Ghuraifi due to the intellectual, religious, social, and symbolic values that it represents, and the diligent efforts that it exerts for [cultivating] (dialogue and rapprochement). In this series, we translate, republish and re-edit the speeches of Al-Ghuraifi, especially those which focused on advocating for dialogue and rapprochement, and which had highlighted the harms of intolerance and extremism, and their negative excursions on the nation and  citizens. We hope that this series would mark a positive attempt of re-enhancing constructive thinking, renewing the active exchange of thoughts and messages that call for dialogue and tolerance, and that propose views on reconciliation and potential exits from the current atmosphere of conflicts and turmoil.

Bahrain Interfaith

March 2020