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Prize and truth

Dec 13,2018 - Last updated at Dec 13,2018

In-depth understanding is needed to grasp the significance of the ceremony which was held at Washington National Cathedral to grant His Majesty King Abdullah the prestigious Templeton Prize. One needs to analyse the speeches delivered during the ceremony to realise why the world is looking for an icon of love, harmony and courage while it is facing terrorism, wars, conflicts, hatred and odious racism. The John Templeton Foundation has come to the fact that His Majesty is one of the few world leaders who believe that without God’s love, peace will not exist in the world.

The Amman Message, “A Common Word between Us and You” and the World Interfaith Harmony Week were the themes of the speakers' speeches at the ceremony. They highlighted the significance of the message of King Abdullah to boost understanding between Islamic sects, and between Islam and other religions. United Nations Secretary General António Guterres attended the ceremony, calling the King an “outstanding statesman, the messenger for peace”.

Speakers, such as Guterres, Heather Templeton, Miroslav Volf, Sheikh Hamza Yusuf and Rev. Randolph Hollerith stressed the status of the King in the circles they represent. His Majesty was honoured for continuing to carry the tolerant message of Islam, and for his endeavours to purify the image of Islam, which was distorted and spoiled by fanatics belonging to other religions and cultures.

No one expected an Arab Muslim leader to be chosen as a humanitarian icon of world peace. However, this has happened years after launching the Amman Message in 2004, and “A Common Word between Us and You” in 2007. Those seeking a symbol of global peace turned their attention again to the region, where divine messages existed. It did not escape their attention that prophets endured tough times so that few may believe in them among a majority that followed injustice, barbarism and moral degradation.

Many parties may be proud of brute force. Nevertheless, true winners are those whose power is derived from God. Such people win at the end of the conflict because they cling to great values and supreme principles and fear nothing but God.

Undoubtedly, attention is directed to Jerusalem, the city that represents peace, where religions meet in the love of God. It is a harbinger of war if one of the religions denied the rights of other religions. Today, Jerusalem is exposed to Judaisation. The Hashemite guardianship of the Islamic and Christian holy sites is the solution to confront this state of denial. Thus, the King, who was honoured at a cathedral, holds a message of harmony and peace between religions; this message is not about saving Jerusalem alone, but rather about saving the whole world from cruelty, hatred and chaos. This is the truth and the prize is a candle that lights the route to truth.


The writer is chairman of the board of trustees of the Middle East University. He contributed this article to The Jordan Times

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