The Muslim Council of Elders – a newly set up independent international body that aims to promote peace in Muslim societies, has urged wise men of the Islamic Ummah and Muslim enthusiasts and zealots to join hands in order to stop the profuse flow of bloodbaths in some Muslim countries without any deterrence from religion or conscience.
The Council appealed to all official, non official entities, and sectarian warring factions to work together to heal bleeding wounds and immediately engage in a constructive dialogue regardless of justifications, excuses and pretexts.
The Council discussed in its third meeting in Abu Dhabi in February the urgency of finding practical tools and methods to promote the culture of peace and tolerance and foster dialogue amongst Muslim communities in parallel with the dialogue with other religions on controversial issues.
The Council passed a three-year strategic plan aimed at spreading the true, noble message of Islam through dousing of fires, interaction of cultures at religious, ethical, philosophical and knowledge levels and preparing a future generation of enlightened scholars for developing the world through peace and harmony.
The strategy is based on three pillars: promotion of dialogue, building of capacities and spreading of awareness.
The strategy envisages a comprehensive plan to promote dialogue through religious discourse which mirrors values and teachings of Islam and an open dialogue among religious, intellectual, political elites and civil society leaders across the world.
An immediate action is also needed to develop abilities through curricula that meet ambitions and needs of young generations in the 21st century and to train scholars and preachers who can introduce marvelous Islamic values to the world peace discourse, and who can denounce violence and extremism.
The strategy also features practical and field measures that can significantly contribute to raising awareness about Islam’s tolerance and mercy. The strategy also calls for enabling Muslim and non-Muslim youth to organise joint meetings and forums to share experiences under the umbrella of nurturing the culture of peace. Young scholars need to be trained and qualified to promote the culture of peace, tolerance and dialogue.
The strategy also includes the formation of ”peace missions” whose prime goal is to visit hotspots as part of endeavours to resolve disputes by peaceful means, holding annual regional conferences for different Islamic schools to deepen the culture of peace, dialogue and openness to modern sciences and technology, and forging partnerships with key world universities to convene regular seminars on best ways to foster the culture of dialogue, tolerance and accepting diverse cultures and faiths and finally establishing a publishing house to print books on the culture of peace and circulate them to Muslim communities.
A cultural and educational programme ”100 urgent questions” will be launched as part of the strategy to address and tackle the most controversial topics facing Muslims in the present and future. The programme will focus on concerns of Muslims and non-Muslims about Islam in general and its view on violence and peace. Through its mission, the programme will try to correct the stereotype image of Islam held by some media institutions and other religious, intellectual and civilian societies.