Religious advice should not involve political interest, says Nasheed

The Maldivian public are often misinformed of authentic Hadiths (sayings of the Prophet) because some local scholars offer religious advice with the intention of serving their political interests, former President Mohamed Nasheed said last night (June 23).

Speaking at a ceremony at the Male’ City Hall to launch a second volume of Dhivehi translation and interpretations of Sahih Muslim’s Hadiths by former State Minister for Islamic Affairs, Sheikh Hussain Rasheed Ahmed, Nasheed said genuine religious advice should not involve personal interest or a political “agenda.”

While a politician might present statistics in a way that would favour his party, “religious advice should not be given in a way that would benefit a political ideology.”

One of the biggest problems facing the country today was the “mixing up” of politicians and religious scholars, Nasheed added.

The Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP) presidential candidate said Sheikh Hussain Rasheed’s book should be made widely available for the public so that Maldivians could distinguish between inauthentic and authentic Hadiths.

The Hadiths were compiled by Imam Bukhari and Muslim during the Abbasid caliphate, Nasheed observed, which was a “golden age” for Islam and the pursuit of knowledge.

“It is said that there were 700 libraries in Baghdad during that period,” he said.

Sheikh Rasheed’s second volume of Hadith translations are available for MVR 250 (US$16).

The former Adhaalath Party President explained at last night’s ceremony that the complete translations of the 5,263 sayings would be published in a planned 12 volumes.

Parts two and three of Sheikh Rasheed’s books on prayer instructions were also released last night by former Islamic Minister Dr Abdul Majeed Abdul Bari and Speaker of Parliament Abdulla Shahid.