Hawzah News Agency (Qom, Iran) - The first specialized think-tank committee of religions, entitled "Thinking, collective wisdom, action and practice", was held by the Center for Communication and International Affairs of seminaries at the conference hall of the Management Center of the Seminary. At the meeting, that was attended by Hujjat al-Islam Husseini Kouhsari Head of the Islamic Seminary’s Office for International Relations, a report on religious activities of the seminary was presented and strategies for the development of religious interactions were discussed.
Hujjat al-Islam Husseini Kouhsari referred to the necessity of forming committee of religions and emphasized, “Religions-related topics have always been one of the main concerns in the seminary; of course, there had been different degrees of strength and weakness in different periods.” He added: "Today we have active centers for religions in the seminary. With the presence of Ayatollah Arafi new approach has been created in the seminary, which, in addition to an international perspective, has also a special interest in the topic of religions and denominations."
Stating that today many scientific centers in the Islamic world are asking for scientific cooperation with Iran’s seminary, the director of Hawzah News said, “Nowadays, centers that are in charge in the field of religions do not meet with each other and do not consult with seminaries or universities. Definitely such negotiations and thinking together can help in overcoming obstacles.”
Hujjat al-Islam Husseini Kouhsari said, "This center is the station for preparing, approving and announcing matters related to religions to other deputies of seminary. Our approach is not regional, and the regional approaches are discussed elsewhere."
Scholars’ demands to enter the area of religions
Hujjat al-islam Daryabari, head of the religions and denominations section of the Islamic Seminary’s Office for International Relations, also made some remarks at the meeting in which he referred to the formation of religions and denominations section of the center and said: "This section was created as an independent segment. Today, the seminary’s greatest scholars and authorities stress on the issue of Religions and Dialogues of Religions. If in the past, authorities and scholars were asked to enter the field of religions, now it is on the contrary and elders and scholars are demanding to enter this filed and work in this area."
Seminary feed the active institutes with intellectual food
Hujjat al-islam Mohammad Mehdi Taskhiri, the head of the International Center for Interreligious Dialogue of the Islamic Culture and Relations Organization also referred to the essential role of the seminary, and stated, "In order to pave the way for dialogue with other countries and international centers, issues such as human rights, the issue of religious minorities, freedom and women's matters should be studied in the seminary. The seminary as a reference body for other centers should feed other centers and institutes active in this area with intellectual food and give them resources to use."
Serious weakness in creating international conversations
Hujjat al-islam Mohammad Reza Barteh, head of the Media and Information Management Department of the Seminary, said: "We have serious weakness in creating conversations in the international arena. Various media of seminary can reflect the different activities and achievements of the seminary-related centers.