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Thursday, January 22, 2015

Discover new truths that future generations will write new history grounded in unbiased understanding of Islam

From Supreme Leader Seyyed Ali Khamenei’s January 21, 2015, message to European and North American youth
Excerpt, minor editing, end comment by 
Carolyn Bennett

A timely preface from Christian texts (minor language update edit): Proverbs 4:1: Hear, children, the instruction of the elder, attend to know understanding  Proverbs 4:7: “Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore, get wisdom, and with all your getting get understanding.”

“The Holy Qur’an”
Supreme Leader of IranSeyyed Ali Khamenei 
var. Ali Hosseini Khamenei

“I don’t insist that you accept my reading or any other reading of Islam. What I want to say is: Don’t allow this dynamic and effective reality in today’s world to be introduced to you through resentments and prejudices. Don’t allow them to hypocritically introduce their own recruited terrorists as representatives of Islam.

“…In reaction to the flood of prejudgments and disinformation campaigns, try to gain a direct and firsthand knowledge of this religion. The right logic requires that you understand the nature and essence of what they are frightening you about and want you to keep away from.

“…Receive knowledge of Islam from its primary and original sources. Gain information about Islam through the Qur’an and the life of its great Prophet.

“I would like to ask you whether you have directly read the Qur’an of the Muslims.

Have you studied the teachings of the Prophet of Islam and his humane, ethical doctrines?

Have you ever received the message of Islam from any sources other than the media?

Have you ever asked yourself how and on the basis of which values has Islam established the greatest scientific and intellectual civilization of the world and raised the most distinguished scientists and intellectuals throughout several centuries?

JUDGE NOT (Where have I heard that imperative? Do you know? Matthew Chapter 7 of Christian texts:

Verse 1: Judge not, that ye be not judged.

Verse 2: For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged; and with what measure ye measure, it shall be measured to you again. [Ref. New Scofield Reference Bible, Holy Bible, authorized King James Version, Oxford University Press 1967]

 “Impartial judgment”
Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei continues

“I would like you not to allow the derogatory and offensive image-buildings to create an emotional gulf between you and the reality, taking away from you the possibility of an impartial judgment.

“Communication media today have removed the geographical borders [but] do not allow them to besiege you within fabricated and mental borders.

“Although no one individually can fill the created gaps, each one of you can construct a bridge of thought and fairness over the gaps to illuminate yourself and your surrounding environment.

“While [the existing] pre-planned challenge between Islam and you, the youth, is undesirable; it can raise new questions in your curious and inquiring minds. Attempts to find answers to these questions will provide you with an appropriate opportunity to discover new truths.

“Therefore, do not miss the opportunity to gain proper, correct and unbiased understanding of Islam so that hopefully, due to your sense of responsibility toward the truth, future generations would write the history of this current interaction between Islam and the West with a clearer conscience and less resentment.”

PAST, PRESENT BEWARE OTHERNESS: paranoid demonizing hostility
“Negative image of Islam in the West”

“…Many attempts have been made over the past two decades, almost since the disintegration of the Soviet Union, to place this great religion in the seat of a horrifying enemy.

“The provocation of a feeling of horror and hatred and its utilization has unfortunately a long record in the political history of the West.…A cursory review of recent critical studies of history would bring home to you the fact that the Western governments’ insincere and hypocritical treatment of other nations and cultures has been censured in new historiography.

“The histories of the United States and Europe are ashamed of slavery, embarrassed by the colonial period and chagrined at the oppression of people of color and non-Christians. Your researchers and historians are deeply ashamed of the bloodshed wrought in the name of religion between the Catholics and Protestants or in the name of nationality and ethnicity during the First and Second World Wars. This approach is admirable.” But what of the West and Islam?


“… I do not want to reproach history but rather I would like you to ask your intellectuals…  

…why the public conscience in the West awakens and comes to its senses after a delay of several decades or centuries.

Why should the revision of collective conscience apply to the distant past and not to the current problems?

Why is it that attempts are made to prevent public awareness regarding an important issue such as the treatment of Islamic culture and thought?

…Why does the power structure in the world want Islamic thought to be marginalized and remain latent?

What concepts and values in Islam disturb the programs of the super powers and what interests are safeguarded in the shadow of distorting the image of Islam?

…You know well that humiliation and spreading hatred and illusory fear of the ‘other’ have been the common base of all those oppressive profiteers.

“Now, I would like you to ask yourself why the old policy of spreading ‘phobia’ and hatred has targeted Islam and Muslims with an unprecedented intensity.

“…My first request is [that you] Study and research the incentives behind this widespread tarnishing of the image of Islam.”
Only the youth can build a firm bridge to a better future. A better future rests with them. It depends upon the younger ones’ communicating an essential clarity of thought first gained through thoughtful study, diligent search and broad exposure unhindered by an old guard whose vested interests and hidden agendas have censored contemporary information and past history.

We must know that our ignorance, often a pattern of deliberate ignorance, is not only a danger to the world; it is also a danger to ourselves. We are neither apart from nor a land apart. We are one people among the world's peoples. 

An older man in a very old land has taken a most important step on behalf of especially (but not only) European and North American youth, and a better future. We should overcome our prejudices. Listen carefully, really hear and heed the words of one who is truly wise, the Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei.

Sources and notes

“Iran leader message to the youth in Europe and North America—Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei has addressed the youth in Europe and North America,” Seyyed Ali Khamenei, January 21,  2015, http://www.presstv.com/Detail/2015/01/21/394174/Iran-leader-addresses-Western-youth

Seyyed Ali Khamenei (brief bio)

The second and current Supreme Leader of Iran, Ali Hosseini Khamenei (b.  July 17, 1939, Shia Cleric), successor to deceased leader, Ruhollah Khomeini, was elected as the new Supreme Leader by the Assembly of Experts on June 4, 1989. In June of 1981, Ali Hosseini Khamenei’s right arm was paralyzed, the result of an assassination attempt. From 1981 to 1989, he was Iran’s President. As his predecessor had done, Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei has issued a decree saying that the production, stockpiling, and use of nuclear weapons is forbidden under Islam.”

Fluent in Arabic and Persian languages (speaking in Azerbaijani, some English), Ali Hosseini Khamenei has translated several books into Persian from Arabic, including the works of the famous Egyptian theoretician Sayyid Qutb. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ali_Khamenei


A lifelong American writer and writer/activist (former academic and staffer with the U.S. government in Washington), Dr. Carolyn LaDelle Bennett is credentialed in education and print journalism and public affairs (PhD, Michigan State University, East Lansing, Michigan; MA, The American University, Washington, DC). Her work concerns itself with news and current affairs, historical contexts, and ideas particularly related to acts and consequences of U.S. foreign relations, geopolitics, human rights, war and peace, and violence and nonviolence. Dr. Bennett is an internationalist and nonpartisan progressive personally concerned with society and the common good. An educator at heart, her career began with the U.S. Peace Corps, teaching in Sierra Leone, West Africa. Since then, she has authored several books and numerous current-affairs articles; her latest book: UNCONSCIONABLE: How The World Sees Us: World News, Alternative Views, Commentary on U.S. Foreign Relations; most thoughts, articles, edited work are posted at Bennett’s Study: http://todaysinsightnews.blogspot.com/ and on her Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/carolynladelle.bennett. http://www.prweb.com/releases/2014/08UNCONSCIONABLE/prweb12131656.htm http://bookstore.xlibris.com/Products/SKU-000757788/UNCONSCIONABLE.aspx Her books are also available at independent bookstores in New York State: Lift Bridge in Brockport; Sundance in Geneseo; Dog Ears Bookstore and Literary Arts Center in Buffalo; Burlingham Books in Perry; The Bookworm in East Aurora


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