Translation of Shahzada Burhanuddin's Address at the Global Faith Summit in Abu Dhabi

Address by Shahzada Husain Burhanuddin, son of His Holiness Syedna Mufaddal Saifuddin, at the COP28UAE Global Faith Leaders Summit on Climate Action in Abu Dhabi on 6th November, 2023.

(In the name of Allah, the most Gracious, the most Merciful

Praise be to Allah and peace be upon His chosen ones.)

Distinguished guests! And dear brothers!

People of knowledge and wisdom!

Those who strive for the common good and the benefit of all, with strong and unwavering resolve!

May peace, blessings, and mercy of Allah be upon you.

I would like to take this opportunity to deliver a few remarks on behalf of my respected father, Sultan al-Bohra, Syedna Mufaddal Saifuddin, on the subject of protecting the environment and preserving and sustaining our natural resources.

Indeed the environment that sustains life on this planet for all forms of Creation is a blessing from Allah the Almighty. We are obligated to offer our gratitude to Him for these bounties by seeking their preservation.

The Holy Quran states:

‘And He has given you everything you asked for. And if you count the blessings of Allah, you will not be able to enumerate them.’

There is no doubt that Allah the Almighty has entrusted the natural world to the care of humankind, and it is for this present generation to safeguard it for future generations in the best possible manner. 

It is our individual as well as collective responsibility to preserve the natural environment by reducing pollution, and to enhance it by planting trees and increasing green cover. Equally important is our obligation to protect our spiritual environment. We must cleanse it of the pollutants of injustice, enmity, and hypocrisy while further enhancing it by planting trees of love, harmony, cooperation, and acceptance, and nurturing flowers of virtue and morality. 

All faiths have called for the preservation of these two environments. 

Together, they have the capacity to cultivate the ideal Global Village and a spiritual utopia where mankind can flourish in peace and security. Only then can this world, the dunya, be transformed and elevated to a higher level of existence, the ulya

The 51st Sultan al-Bohra Syedna Taher Saifuddin, my respected father’s esteemed grandfather, guides us towards this foundational principle in one of his poems. He states: 

'This world of yours is your home for as long as you live. Treat it with lofty esteem, for a residence is defined by its resident.'

In conclusion, I would like to emphasise that we all shoulder the responsibility of creating an awareness within our respective communities that the Earth’s natural and human resources are linked by bonds of mutual dependence.

One of the best ways to spread this awareness is by planting seeds of love for all human beings and all creatures, because true love for the Creator necessitates love for His Creation. The Prophet Mohammed, may Allah’s prayers and peace be upon him and his family, has stated:

‘All of Creation is a family dependent upon Allah. Therefore the most beloved of Creation to Him is the one who benefits His family the most.’

Religious leaders are in an especially favourable position to inspire people and to urge them to fulfil their responsibilities in striking an effective balance between urban development and safeguarding the natural environment. 

I thank the United Arab Emirates, its rulers, and all those involved in the organisation of this special conference in the lead up to COP28.

May Allah inspire us all to serve His creation and may He grace us all with His protection and care.

‘Allah’s guardianship is best for He is the most Merciful.’

Allah’s salaams, mercy and blessing be upon you all. 

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Last Updated
November 8, 2023
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