Sayed Ammar Nakshawani is a prominent name in theological circles. A British Iraqi, the 34-year-old Nakshawani is the Iman Ali Chair at the Hartford Seminary in US. A Shia Muslim, he has frequently called for inter- and intra-faith harmony and is one of the most vocal critics of the Islamic State.
In the aftermath of the Paris Attacks, he posted this touching message on Facebook:
My brother died in Paris. My sister died in Beirut. My daughter died in Afghanistan. My son died in Baghdad. This is how heartbroken I feel. There is no need to say that you care only for one country and not another, and there is no need to say that one tragedy is worse than another.
When one person dies, we have all been killed.
Give your prayers for Paris, give your love for Beirut, give your tears for Afghanistan, and give your heart for Iraq. When it’s a time of mourning, don’t make the argument about what was posted on Facebook or social media.
We all have the same enemy, and it is the cowards and the monsters of ISIS. If you want to express your anger, they are the ones that have attacked us.
I know that we all feel like that we are living in terrible times, and in truth these are horrifying events.
But at the same time, this is the moment where we have the potential to show the greatest humanity. If you are Muslim, tell a non-Muslim you love them or that you care for their wellbeing.
If you are a Shia, say this to a Sunni, and if you are a Sunni, say it to a Shia. If you are a non-Muslim, give your love and compassion to a Muslim.
At your mosques and centers, hold sessions in remembrance of those who were lost in all these lands. Remembrance is not just for the divine personalities of our history, but for all of these innocents. #prayforparis #prayforbeirut #prayforafghanistan #prayforiraq
Pray for the world.