Home Archive Statements A statement on the ongoing sectarian debates amongst Muslims

Sunni – Shiite sectarian strife, Islamic unity

Fadlullah: The sectarian debate is an act of treason to the nation, and the mistakes of history do not bind the coming generations

His Eminence, the Religious Authority, Sayyed Muhammad Hussein Fadlullah, confirmed in a statement that the sectarian debate that violates Islamic morals is an offence against the entire Islamic reality. He also warned from going through the classical Sunni and Shiite books under the aim of digging out each sect's mistakes, refusing to turn them into a sword that hangs over the heads of the coming generations, and confirming that fomenting strife in the nation represents treason to it and to the commandments of the noble Messenger (p.). His Eminence also pointed out that the recent sectarian debate relieved Israel, calling on the Islamic Shiite and Sunni vanguards to confront that and to support the Palestinian people instead of occupying themselves with the marginal issues here and there.

Following is the text of the statement:  

The state of political disruption the nation has reached, to the extent that it is threatening the unity of several Arab and Islamic countries, and the sectarian debate launched from several positions, targeting religious or political symbols and creating big cracks in the nation's structure… all these developments bring about sorrow and grief and highlight a number of threats and mistakes that have been and are still being committed at many levels:

First: The fact that the rhetoric has violated the Islamic morals and priorities and resorted to terms that connote Takfir, lechery, slandering, and insults, does not only offend those who use them, but rather the general Islamic community that models after the religious scholars, but eventually, it would be shocked by their bitter reality; which might drive the people either to lose rationality, or to continue to follow them, or lose trust in the entire reality.

Second: Going through the classical books to dig out Sunni issues that condemn the Shiites, or Shiite issues that condemn the Sunnis is one of the biggest slips, for the mistakes included in these books ought not to be turned into a sword that hangs over the heads of the coming generations, or an obstacle that impedes Islamic unity. Moreover, whoever seeks to dig out the mistakes of history and use them to incite fanaticisms in the present or future of the Islamic generations, is actually betraying the nation and disobeying the commandments of the noble Messenger (p.) who had addressed the nation with a decisive speech, in which he (p.) said: "Do not turn after me misguided, some of you striking the necks of the others."

Third: At a time we do not reject the concept of criticizing any religious leadership or the like, we would like any criticism to be based on an objective scientific ground away from fanaticism and the mentality of vengeance, for we neither approve of sanctifying what is not sanctified, nor support excessive criticism which violates the Islamic supreme morals, for Allah says in His Glorious Book: "And do not dispute with the followers of the Book except by what is best…" (29:46), so how do you think the dispute among the people of the same Book, the Quran, ought to be?!

Fourth: The ongoing sectarian debates that are extending rapidly and that have reached the vast media space and the political forums on satellites and the internet and the like…all these developments bring about horror in the souls of those devoted to the nation and relief in the hearts of the enemies, especially the Zionist entity, which expresses its relief for the fact that the nation's leaders and scholars have entered into this escalating argumentative chaos. Meanwhile, this Zionist entity goes forth in its acts of killing and assassination and besiegement in Gaza and the West Bank, as it pushes its attempts to judaize Jerusalem forward and tightens its grip on occupied Palestine and plots for wars all over the Arab and Islamic positions that are preoccupying themselves with marginal issues and useless details and opening the doors wide open before the American invaders and Zionist occupiers.

We call on the nation's aware vanguards and the revered Sunni and Shiite elites to take action at all levels so as to stop the internal fragmentation and put an end to these debates that add nothing except further complicating relations between the various Islamic parties. Moreover, we call on everyone to support the oppressed Palestinian people and end the siege imposed on them at the economic, social, and political levels, for the Messenger of Allah (p.) says: "Allah will not bless a nation, unless the weak takes his right from the strong."