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In the Name of God بسم الله

The historicity of Al Mujara'at

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Salam Aleikum, 

I've been lurking here for a while, but decided to make an account today. I've been more interested in learning more, and found the book al muraja'at, which seemingly was a good neutral source to start off with, when it comes to the exchanges between sunni/shia. I'm curious about the validity, and if there's a possibility from a neutral standpoint, that the exchanges really took place between the two parties, and what solid proof we have of it. 

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I often say when discussing those entry books of shia sunni (like Peshawar Nights, Then I Was Guided, or the one you mentioned) that I find them very apologetic and most of the times the narrative is quite hard to believe with a very knowledgeable Shia `alim and a quite candid Sunni one who has almost no counter arguments to those that are given to him. 

Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى) knows best.

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On 6/15/2024 at 11:39 PM, hammurabi said:

I'm curious about the validity, and if there's a possibility from a neutral standpoint, that the exchanges really took place between the two parties, and what solid proof we have of it. 

Salam , there is many ways to prove it which only accusation of Wahabis against it  is about time it's publication which has been done 25 years after death of  Sheikh of Al Azhar Salim Bishri which their stong opposition against it is a strong proof about validity of it because they couldn't deny academic validity of it .

Two scholars

The book's author, Sayyid 'Abd al-Husayn Sharaf al-Din al-Musawi al-'Amili (b. 1290/1873-4 - d. 1377/1957) was a Lebanese Shiite Mujtahid and a supporter of the idea of the proximity of Islamic sects (especially Shiism and Sunnism)—he made remarkable efforts to unify both schools and resolve tensions between them. He was a leader of the Lebanese Independence Movement.

Al-Shaykh Salim al-Bishri al-Maliki, a Sunni scholar, was the head of al-Azhar in Egypt for two terms. During his travel to Egypt in 1329 A.H./ 1911, Sharaf al-Din visited al-Bishri. There was debate between them about Sunni and Shiite beliefs when they met—a debate that continued throughout the 112 letters between them. They decided to publish their exchanges, but Sharaf al-Din postponed it because of his political and social struggles. In 1338 A.H./ 1919-20, French occupiers raided his house and his personal library, and burned some of his writings. Fortunately the letters, later called al-Muraja'at, were undamaged. Sharaf al-Din compiled the letters in the form of a book and published them.

In the preface to the book, Sharaf al-Din says that he has included all exchanges between him and al-Bishri in the book. The book was first published in 1355 A.H./ 1936-7 in Sayda, Lebanon.[1]





Al-Shaykh Salim al-Bishri al-Maliki,first 

الشيخ سليم البشري أول رئيس لهيئة كبار العلماء بالأزهر الشريف .. تعرف عليه

Al-Shaykh Salim al-Bishri first head of [supreme] council of grand scholars in Al-Azahar Al-Sharif ...know him   (in Arabic) 




Salim al-Bishri, (Arabic: سَلِيم ٱلْبِشْرِي) also known as Salim al-Bishri al-Maliki, born in 1832 in Mahallat Bishr (Beheira) and died in 1916 in Cairo, was an Egyptian Sunni religious scholar and a Grand Imam of Al-Azhar. He was one of the six Grand Imams who held this position twice, once between 1899 and 1903 and again from 1909 until his death.


Grand Imam of Al-Azhar[edit]

He was later appointed as the head of the Maliki school at al-Azhar University as the sheikh and also secured a position within the Council of al-Azhar by Hassûnah An-Nawâwî (1895-1899), the Grand Imam at the time. After Hassûnah An-Nawâwî's passing, and following a brief interregnum, Salim al-Bishri succeeded him and became the Grand Imam of al-Azhar.[1] He became the first Maliki leader of the institution in 175 years.[6]


In 1911, Salim al-Bishri implemented a significant reform within al-Azhar, which, among other changes, established the Supreme Council of al-Azhar.[14] He also engaged in discussions with Shiite figures, such as Abd al-Husayn Sharaf al-Din al-Musawi, with whom he maintained a correspondence.[15][16]


 [15] "Sunnis and Shiites: Between Rapprochement and Conflict | Hudson". www.hudson.org. 2023-08-15. Archived from the original on 2023-09-03. Retrieved 2023-09-04.


[16] Brunner, Rainer (2004). Islamic Ecumenism in the 20th Century. doi:10.1163/9789047404279. ISBN 978-90-474-0427-9.[page needed]


Sunnis and Shiites: Between Rapprochement and Conflict

Shmuel Bar



The aspiration toward ecumenical rapprochement between Sunnis and Shiites has been attempted by al-Azhar, one of the oldest Islamic institutions of learning in Egypt. It started quite early in the 20th century when the Shaykh al-Azhar, Salim al-Bishri, had a correspondence with the Shiite scholar 'Abd al-Husayn Sharaf al-Din from Jabal 'Amil in southern Lebanon. This rapprochement culminated in the establishment of Jama'a al-Taqrib bayn al-Madhahib al-Islamiyya (The Society for Rapprochement of Islamic Legal Schools) in 1947 with the goal of promoting reconciliatory relations between Sunnis and Shiites. Once this ecumenical thinking was institutionalized, contacts took place that paved the way for peaceful coexistence. In 1949, Jama'a's journal, Risala al-islam, was founded in which both Sunni and Shiite writers were afforded the opportunity to voice opinions in favor of ecumenism.

This article was published in thejakartapost.com with the title "". Click to read: https://www.thejakartapost.com/news/2015/12/04/sunni-shiite-tensions-and-our-culture-tolerance.html.

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