2024_02_19_Royal Anthropological Institute

Journal of the world’s oldest anthropological institute recognizes Humanitarian Islam’s global importance

“[Nahdlatul Ulama’s] ambition is high: not merely to counterbalance the dominance currently exercised by Saudi and Egyptian religious authorities, tied to autocratic regimes, but also to set an example for all other scriptural religions, to renounce their ‘hard texts,’ which can be cited to justify xenophobia and violence.”
~ Dr. Jonathan Benthall
Department of Anthropology, University College London

LONDON, United Kingdom, 19 February 2024 — The world’s oldest scholarly association dedicated to the furtherance of anthropology — Britain’s Royal Anthropological Institute (est. 1871) — has published an academic review of Humanitarian Islam: Reflecting on an Islamic Concept (Brill | Schöningh, 2023), an edited volume compiling analyses by some of the world’s leading experts on the global Humanitarian Islam movement.

The review — published in Volume 30, Issue 1 of Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute — is the latest in a series of analyses by world-leading experts in the fields of anthropology, international relations, geopolitics, religious studies, and global peace and security, who recognize that Humanitarian Islam merits serious academic research.

Dr. Jonathan Benthall — an Honorary Research Associate at University College London who served as Director of the Royal Anthropological Institute for a quarter-century and is founding editor of the academic journal Anthropology Today — wrote the review, which may be read in full below. Continue reading full communiqué…

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2024_02_05_Zayed Award for Human Fraternity

Indonesia’s Nahdlatul Ulama and Muhammadiyah organizations recognized for their contributions to humanity and to international peace and security

“The largest Islamic organization in the world, Nahdlatul Ulama, plays a major role in spearheading global peace and diplomatic efforts”
~ Zayed Award for Human Fraternity

KH. Yahya Cholil Staquf, General Chairman of the Nahdlatul Ulama Central Board (left) and Dr. Haedar Nashir, Chairman of the Muhammadiyah Central Board, at the Zayed Award ceremony in Abu Dhabi

ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates — On 5 February 2024, the Higher Committee of Human Fraternity — a joint initiative of the Holy See, Egypt’s al-Azhar University, and the Government of Abu Dhabi — presented the 2024 Zayed Award for Human Fraternity to Indonesia’s Nahdlatul Ulama and Muhammadiyah organizations for their “respective roles in the humanitarian field, as well as their peacebuilding efforts at the national, regional, and international levels.”

The humanitarian award is named after Shaykh bin Sultan Al Nahyan, founder of the United Arab Emirates, and the Document on Human Fraternity for World Peace and Living Together. His Holiness Pope Francis and His Eminence Shaykh Ahmed al-Tayyeb of al-Azhar signed the Document on Human Fraternity on 4 February 2019 in Abu Dhabi, during the first-ever Papal visit to the Gulf region.

Prior recipients of the Zayed Award for Human Fraternity include Pope Francis and Shaykh Tayyeb; UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres; King Abdullah and Queen Rania of Jordan; and the Roman Catholic grassroots organization Sant’Egidio. Continue reading full communiqué…

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2024_01_28_“Gus Dur” at al-Azhar

Egypt’s al-Azhar University celebrates the life and legacy of KH. Abdurrahman Wahid

“Al-Azhar considers Nahdlatul Ulama to be its sister organization, for NU employs the same classical Sunni religious methodology taught at al-Azhar al-Sharif”
~ Dr. Osama al-Azhari
Advisor for Religious Affairs to Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi

CAIRO, Egypt, 28 January 2024 — In a sign of Nahdlatul Ulama’s burgeoning influence in the Middle East, al-Azhar University — one of the oldest and most influential seats of learning in Sunni Islam — held an official celebration of H.E. KH. Abdurrahman Wahid’s life and legacy. Popularly known as “Gus Dur,” the long-time Chairman of Nahdlatul Ulama (1984 – 99) and first democratically elected president of Indonesia, attended al-Azhar University in the 1960s.

President Wahid (1940 – 2009) was renowned for his lifelong efforts to promote a pluralistic and tolerant understanding of Islam that enables Muslims to live at peace with the modern world and to embrace the values of democracy and universal human rights. Nahdlatul Ulama’s current initiatives — including the Humanitarian Islam movement, Islamic Jurisprudence for a Global Civilization (fiqh al-hadarah), and the Movement for Shared Civilizational Values — were directly inspired by President Wahid and are being executed by his close friends and disciples. Continue reading full communiqué…

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2024_01_02_The Muslim 500 — 2024

NU Chairman KH. Yahya Cholil Staquf among world’s 20 most influential Muslims

“We need to find a new, moral interpretation of religion that will guide people of different faiths to have more harmonious relations with one another”
~ KH. Yahya Cholil Staquf
The Muslim 500

AMMAN, Jordan, 2 January 2024 — For the second year running, the world’s premier index of Muslim power and influence, The Muslim 500, has ranked Nahdlatul Ulama Chairman KH. Yahya Cholil Staquf among the 20 most influential Muslims on earth.

Mr. Staquf is at the forefront of a global movement working to reform obsolete and problematic tenets within religious orthodoxy, and thereby ensure that religion functions as a genuine and dynamic source of solutions, rather than problems, in the 21st century. He has co-authored numerous landmark theological treatises, declarations, statements, and proclamations that have been disseminated to millions, and which carry the unambiguous support and religious authority of the world’s largest Muslim organization.

The Muslim 500 is published by The Royal Islamic Strategic Studies Centre, a research entity affiliated with the Royal Aal al-Bayt Institute for Islamic Thought, headquartered in Amman, the capital of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan. Continue reading full communiqué…

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2024_01_01_National Post

Roman Catholic priest, professor, and columnist highlights Humanitarian Islam’s potential to transform the Muslim world

“‘Humanitarian Islam’ — a religious vision tolerant of pluralism and committed to interreligious harmony, human rights and democracy [has] the potential to change the thinking of hundreds of millions of Muslims in the next generation… It is a development very much worth watching and, at year’s end, a cause for hope”
~ Fr. Raymond J. de Souza
Senior Fellow at Cardus and the University of Toronto

TORONTO, Canada, 1 January 2024 — On the first day of the New Year, prominent Canadian Catholic priest, professor, and commentator Father Raymond J. de Souza dedicated his column in Canada’s National Post to an expansive analysis of the prospects for Middle East peace.

In his article, titled “A budding peace grows in the Islamic world, despite terrorist efforts,” Fr. de Souza praised Nahdlatul Ulama’s Humanitarian Islam movement for having a greater long-term potential impact than recent diplomatic breakthroughs in the region, such as the Abraham Accords or the Chinese-brokered détente between Iran and Saudi Arabia. Continue reading full communiqué…

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