The transcript of the speech of Dr. Ataaollah Rafiei Aataani, the scientific secretary of the congress at the closing ceremony of the 5th International Congress on Islamic Humanities and the 4th Islamic humanities global award ceremony
“I regard it as a duty, before making any comments, to welcome all dear seminary and university professors and scholars to this scientific event. This is the closing ceremony of the 5th International Congress on Islamic Humanities that is coinciding with the 4th Islamic humanities’ global award ceremony.
“As you know, the opening ceremony of the 5th International Congress on Islamic Humanities was held Sunday at the IRIB International Conference Center. Speakers of the opening ceremony were Iran’s Judiciary chief, Head of the Council for Boosting and Upgrading Humanities Dr. Haddad Adel; Secretary of Iran’s Supreme Council of the Cultural Revolution Hujjat al-Islam Dr. Saeed Reza Ameli; and Iran’s Vice President for Science and Technology Dr. Sattari. The most important innovation at this event was holding specialized commissions separately over three days and in different venues in Tehran and Qom. This paved the way for presenting papers in a more detailed way along with scientific discussions by the attendees.
“The commissions of jurisprudence and law, Islamic economics, Islamic management, Islamic sociology, Islamic art and architecture, humanities’ change management, Islamic education, and the Iranian-Islamic model of progress were held at Tehran’s universities and scientific centers. The commissions of philosophy and humanities’ methodology as well as Islamic psychology and political science happened in Qom’s scientific centers. Our understanding is all the commissions were successful.
“Some commissions like those of Islamic psychology and Islamic art and architecture were however very good given the presence of young people. Meanwhile, the commissions of Islamic economics, Islamic political science, Islamic jurisprudence and law and Islamic education were very fruitful scientifically with university lecturers being in attendance effectively. But commissions like Islamic management and the Iranian-Islamic model of progress needs to be strengthened.
“In spite of the congress’s secretariat receiving 450 paper abstracts and 363 papers, only 90 papers were presented at meetings held by the 11 commissions. Interestingly, more than 700 people attended the meetings over these past three days. In some cases, most of the attendees were members of academic boards of universities. For instance, in a commission, of 130 participants, 100 were academic board members. In commission s where the number of attendees was lower, the majority were university lecturers and professors.
“Some commissions like jurisprudence and law focused on the environment jurisprudence and law. This unique perspective made them interesting. In addition to paper presentations at commissions, there were such innovative moves at this edition [of the congress] as holding panels on a case basis and critiquing papers. In short, it seems that, with this experience, we have reached a new era of institutionalizing Islamic humanities and socially managing the scientific production of Islamic humanities. We can take the next steps as we move forward by identifying weaknesses and strengthening strengths, hopefully.
“The evolutionary direction of this great scientific movement shows that the possibility of much of these [disciplines of Islamic humanities] bearing fruit is contingent upon their special timing. The groundwork must be laid for them to materialize.
“We published two theory books—which many described as “matchless”— containing 8 theoretical papers. We also gave out 9 basic and applied research magazines. In the meantime, Sadra, as a discourse-making magazine on Islamic humanities, is about to be published. And 4 specialized conferences of Islamic humanities’ prominent lecturers have been held. Paper compilations were printed in 10 volumes. It seems that discourse-making, production of knowledge and networking as our objectives are ongoing at an acceptable level. I would like to take this opportunity to inform you that the Policy-making Committee of the congress argues that the activities the congress has undertaken during these past 10 years have been beyond the capacity of the organization. Therefore, the Supreme Council of Islamic Humanities was founded as the higher authority of the congress’s secretariat with the participation of 40 scientific centers.
“As I said at the beginning, as we wrap up the 5th International Congress on Islamic Humanities, we are going to have the 4th ceremony to grant the International Award of Islamic Humanities. In the past three events, the award went to 9 of the most prominent Iranian and foreign scholars. Now Ayatollah Mesbah Yazdi will grant the award to two prominent Islamic humanities scholars on behalf of the award committee as follows:
“The first winner is Ayatollah Reshad for his effective and rare theorization about philosophy and methodology of Islamic humanities that has come out in the form of numerous books and papers. Of course, the award committee believes that scientific management and successful scientific institutionalization [by Ayatollah Reshad] as well as educating prominent researchers make this honorable scholar more worthy of this award.
“The second winner is Hujjat al-Islam Mir Moezzi for his cohesive and continued theorization about Islamic economics, especially economic system in Islam.
“Granting this award is aimed at showing the scientific achievements of Iran as well as appreciating the efforts of our great scientists. In addition, we will appreciate Professor Osman Bekar, a Malaysian thinker, who has some effective scientific accomplishments with regard to the relationship between science and religion and the philosophy of religious knowledge.
“I also take this opportunity to remind you of an important point at this scientific gathering. One of the legitimate demands of society and even elites is that this great scientific movement would help resolve the economic, educational, cultural and political problems with its achievements in the field of Islamic humanities.
“However, theorization about basics and methodology of Islamic humanities continues to be of an undeniable significance. It seems that theorizing with the aim of helping resolve social and individual problems within the framework of Islamic principles is the most logical approach for now. In future, we will make efforts to recreate the truths of Islamic principles to solve people’s problems by using the capacities of the Supreme Council of Islamic Humanities and the possibilities of the 40 scientific centers. Our goal is to show that the righteous path provides the best solution to problems in life.
Peace and Allah’s mercy and blessings be upon you