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Egypt's Grand Mufti decries identification of political leaders with prophets

Egypt's Grand Mufti denounces a description of Field Marshal Abdel-Fattah El Sisi and Interior Minister Mohamed Ibrahim as prophets sent from God

Ahram Online , Tuesday 11 Feb 2014
Egypt
Egypt's Grand Mufti Shawqi Allam (Photo: Ahram)
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Egypt's Grand Mufti Shawqi Allam denounced Tuesday a parallel drawn last week by a leading cleric likening the country's military chief and its interior minister to prophets.

During a ceremony held on 5 February to honour families of police members killed or injured on duty, Saadeddin El-Helaly, head of Al-Azhar University's Department of Comparative Jurisprudence, described Defence Minister Field Marshal Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi and Interior Minister Mohamed Ibrahim as two prophets sent by God.

Allam, who heads Dar Al-Ifta, the authority entrusted with issuing religious edicts, rectified that prophets hold a dignified and untouchable status which rests on divine selection, infallibility and revelation.

Igniting a fury of criticism, El-Helaly had said "God sent two men, as He sent Moses and Aaron before...No Egyptian would have imagined that these [two] are from God's prophets... El-Sisi and Mohamed Ibrahim were sent out."

"Any analogy comparing [political] leaders to prophets of God is unacceptable. The leaders themselves would not agree to such reverence and glory," the grand mufti reprimanded in public comments.

El-Helaly later told reporters he had meant to compare situations and stances.

This comes in the context of a nationwide fascination with the military chief who led the ouster of Islamist president Mohamed Morsi last July amid mass protests against the latter's year-long rule. Since he came to be perceived as the nation's saviour and the spearhead of the "war on terrorism" plaguing authorities, El-Sisi's popularity in the country has reached stellar heights.

"The religious discourse at this critical period should be geared towards advocating the morals and values of preserving the nation and entrenching a culture of development," Allam asserted.

He said Islam dictates that each person be granted a rank commensurate with his status, adding that he respects and supports Al-Azhar, the oldest and highest seat of Sunni Islamic learning, which has traditionally upheld a platform promoting the values of moderate Islam.

Clerics during Morsi's time in office were heavily censured for their religious rhetoric depicting authority figures as infallible agents sent from God.

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John
12-02-2014 08:25am
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Course
Some peopls sellig faith for dollars like el helay these kinds of person is not faithfull for the country and for the nation .he need only dollars. God protect all muslims from that person
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Dave
12-02-2014 06:04am
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2+
El Helaly, Alazhar, and what's next?
How the educated people of Egypt accept the likes of Mr. Helaly to lead such prominent institution?
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Pharaoh
11-02-2014 05:39pm
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90+
Stop the ignorance
El Helaly did not say that. He likened the situation to messengers not prophets where all of us could be messengers sent by god to do something. God sent me to write on this wall is an acceptable Islamic way of speaking because god is in charge of all affairs. This ignorance needs to stop.
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Sean
12-02-2014 08:44am
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messengers are prophets btw
all messengers are prophets but not all prophets are messengers... this is a basic understanding/belief in islam.. a rasool (messenger) is a very high ranking prophet like mohammed, jesus, abraham, moses etc s.a.w.
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mustafeez
11-02-2014 04:53pm
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In Fear
He know he is telling lies, and He is telling in fear/in greed. Even though fear is their he has to tell truth . I think this Mufti will go to hell.
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TH
11-02-2014 03:45pm
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73+
About Time...
It is good to see leadership from Al Azhar speak out against what is clearly wrong. I would like this to happen more often. They should speak out against those that kill soldiers and policemen in the name of Jihad. Those that kill fellow moslems in the name of democracy. The Azhar needs to educate the people on religious matters and speak out against all those that use religion to advance their own causes, whatever the cause or whomever the perpetrator.
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Ayub
03-06-2014 12:24pm
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Bad linkage
How can ordinary human being can be link to prophet in the name of politics
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