By Muneeb Nasir
(October 16, 2015) – The Imam of the Grand Mosque of Makkah, Dr. Shaikh Salih Abdullah Humaid, called on the weekly Friday congregational prayers held at the Parliament of the World’s Religions in Salt Lake City to partake of kindness and ease in all matters.
“Kindness is everything,” said Shaikh Abdullah Humaid in his sermon.
“May Allah bless you to take matters by its best and ease. It is the true wisdom and proof of maturity of the mind.”
“Our Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, states, ‘Whenever good manners enter anything it will beautify it and whenever it is removed from something, it will be made worse,’ ” the Imam advised.
“It is kindness – it is controlling one’s desires with patience and disciplining them away from violence.”
Dr. Shaikh Salih Abdullah Humaid is one of the many dignitaries attending the Parliament of the World’s Religions being held in Salt Lake City, Utah.The Imam is scheduled to address a plenary session at the convention on Sunday.
The weekly Friday congregation prayers was attended by Muslim delegates from around the world and they were joined by members of the local Muslim community in Salt Lake City who came out to hear the message from the Imam.
The Parliament that was inaugurated on Thursday and that runs until Monday, October 19 has drawn ten thousand people from over 80 countries and 50 different religious and spiritual traditions.
“Be kind to your parents and treat them well and be a good companion to them,” continued Shaikh Abdullah Humaid in his sermon. “Be kind to your children, for your Lord blesses those who are kind.”
“When Allah wants to be kind to people He gives them kindness.”
The Parliament themed, “Reclaiming the Heart of Our Humanity,” is filled with programs and conversations on climate change and creation care; war, violence and hate speech; and economic inequality and wasteful living.
Many special activities and events are taking place in and around the Salt Palace Convention Centre.
An exhibit hall features booths offering spiritual texts, original artwork, handcrafted jewelry and unique clothing items from around the world for purchase.
Twelve Faith spaces are set up in the convention center to allow attendees to meet and speak with people of different religious traditions. A shared central area between the rooms provides an interfaith space for conversations and connections.
A unique feature at the Parliament is the Langar which is a free vegetarian meal served daily by the Sikh community.
Friday’s program highlights included two plenary sessions – ‘Faith in Women’ and the ‘Emerging Leaders’ sessions.
At the ‘Faith in Women’ plenary, a major declaration was issued that discusses religious and spiritual sources of inspiration and empowerment for women, the transformative impact of women on their religious traditions, and the unique contribution of women to meeting global challenges.
Internationally renowned speakers to address the Parliament include Mairead Maguire, Oscar Arias Sanchez, Dr. Karen Armstrong, Dr. Tariq Ramadan, Dr. Eboo Patel, Chief Arvol Lookinghorse, Valarie Kaur, Dr. Arun Gandhi, Rev. Jim Wallis, Dr. Vandana Shiva, Rabbi David Saperstein, Michael Bernard Beckwith, Tavis Smiley, and Terry Tempest Williams.
The first Parliament of Religions was held at the 1893 Chicago Columbian Expositions’ and was the first formal meeting of the religious East and West.