The two- day conference held at the Lahore University of Management Sciences (LUMS) and the University of Lahore (UoL) was aimed to discuss establishment of a peaceful and tolerant society through teachings of Quran. Pakistan and other Muslim countries like Iraq, Afghanistan and Syria have been struggling to cope with threat of terrorism and extremism.
The terrorists, who self proclaim themselves as saviors of the religion of Islam, seem to be devoid of major part of Quranic teachings i-e Peace and Tolerance. These terrorist organizations for their selfish designs radicalize Muslim youth by brain washing them with extremist ideas and dogmas. These terrorists tamper the teachings of Quran to influence the innocent minds of the youth.
To counter terrorism and extremism, true teachings of Quran should be prevailed in Universities and Colleges through discussions, conferences, and debates and also by adding specifically in general curriculum. Especially addition of Quranic teachings in curriculum can work as tool to ensue tolerance, acceptance, brotherhood and peace in students. Government should introduce specific short courses on Quranic teachings having Quranic references regarding anti terrorism and extremism.
The two-day discussions were titled as ‘Paigham-e-Pakistan Narrative and the Establishment of an Ideal Society’, which was attended by scholars, teachers and students. The attendants included: Dr Abdullah al-Ahsan, Professor of Comparative Civilization, Department of Political Science and International Relations Istanbul Sehir University, Turkey; Dr Khairi Mahyuddin, Faculty of Leadership and Management, Universiti Sains Islam Malaysia; Dr Lloyd Ridgeon, Reader in Islamic Studies, University of Glasgow; Dr Martin Mahmud Kellner, Institute for Islamic Theology, University Osnabruck Germany; and Shaykh Ahmad Dabbagh, Principal of UK Academy (Islamic Sciences) and Director of Wise life Academy Manchester, UK.
The attending international scholar’s addressed the conference and emphasized on the value of tolerance taught by Quran. They scholars diverted the attention of attendants of the conference towards the menace of extremism, they said, “Extremism can never be the message of Islam. Islam is the religion of peace and humanity. Collective efforts for dissemination of the true message of Islam are imperative and the Paigham-e-Pakistan narrative is a timely step to pursue this goal. The message should be spread across the globe. We must portray a soft and positive image of Islam and highlight Islam as a religion of peace, brotherhood, tolerance and accommodation.”
The scholars further shared that it is responsibility of ulma, faculty members, tutors and civil society to guide the true essence of Islam to students. The teachings should start at very early stage of education. From primary classes, the education curriculum should be consisted of Hadiths, Islamic stories and Quranic ayahs giving lesson of peace and tolerance.
As we have experienced in recent years, the incidents of killings, fights and disputes have risen in Universities and Colleges of Pakistan. Most of them happen because of intolerance and in fit of fury. The youth must be taught a tolerant way of thinking. The education to maintain a positive thought process can save us from unfortunate mistakes, which can only be through the teachings of Quran.