Possibilities for Renewing Theology in a Cultural Seminar Organized by the Muslim Council of Elders' Pavilion at the International Publishing and Book Fair in Rabat

Secretary-General of Al-Azhar's Islamic Research Academy Praises the Enlightened Vision of the Muslim Council of Elders in Renewing Islamic Sciences

The pavilion of the Muslim Council of Elders held its final seminar at the 29th International Publishing and Book Fair in Rabat, titled "Possibilities for Renewing Theology Through Personal Experience." The seminar featured Dr. Nazir Ayad, Secretary-General of Al-Azhar's Islamic Research Academy, and was moderated by Dr. Samir Boudinar, Director of the Al Hokama Center for Peace Research. The seminar covered many important topics, highlighting the potential for renewing theology by exploring personal experiences and modern approaches in this field.

At the beginning of the seminar, Dr. Nazir Ayad praised the pioneering efforts of the Muslim Council of Elders in supporting the field of theological heritage, through an enlightened vision and a renewed approach that considers contemporary needs. He emphasized that renewing theology is a vital necessity and a human, civilizational, and Islamic requirement, and a duty for those concerned with, associated with, and working in this field.

Dr. Ayad explained that theology encompasses the entire religion in terms of "principles" and "branches." He noted that His Eminence Dr. Ahmed Al-Tayeb, the  Grand Imam of Al-Azhar and Chairman of the Muslim Council of Elders, clarified that jurisprudence involves understanding religion, consisting of two parts: one related to matters of creed or principles, and the other related to practical matters or subsidiary issues, which is jurisprudence in its generally known sense. He pointed out that theological heritage needs to be developed and built upon by renewing the science, including its methods, tools, ways of presenting, and engaging with the rich theological heritage.

Dr. Nazir Ayad further emphasized that discussing the renewal of theology does not mean neglecting the theological heritage, belittling it, or undermining it. Rather, it involves engaging with this heritage through reading, research, analysis, criticism, and comprehension to serve as a foundation for new construction that keeps pace with modern developments. He stressed that the current reality necessitates revisiting traditional theological topics and addressing new issues that require renewed consideration.

In conclusion, Dr. Ayad highlighted that throughout its long history, theology has been one of the pillars of Islamic civilization, fostering intellectual openness and engagement through the intellectual debates between Muslims and others, thereby enriching the values of peaceful coexistence and human thought.

For his part, Dr. Samir Boudinar added that the topic of renewing theology is a current issue that captures the interest of the Muslim Council of Elders due to the urgent need to renew religious thought in general and theology in particular to address modern intellectual and knowledge challenges and to adapt to contemporary developments.

The Muslim Council of Elders concluded its participation at the International Publishing and Book Fair in Rabat, which took place from May 9 to 19. The pavilion presented over 220 publications in five different languages, including 22 new releases addressing major intellectual and cultural issues. Additionally, it hosted various seminars that dealt with various issues related to tolerance, coexistence and human fraternity.



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