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Controversy over a play about Al-Shaarawi.. Parliament is moving and Al-Azhar is responding

During the past few days, communication platforms in Egypt have not been devoid of circulating the name of the famous and late Egyptian preacher, Sheikh Mohamed Metwally El Shaarawy, After a fierce campaign launched by the Egyptian media, intellectuals, and media professionals against the late Sheikh, Al-Azhar rose to respond and Parliament moved to hold accountable.

And the beginning was with the first hours of the start of the new year, when director Khaled Jalal, head of the cultural production sector, decided to announce the work plan of the Art House for the theater for the year 2023 through a press conference at the National Theatre, during which the Minister of Culture, Dr. Nevin Al-Kilani, announced the launch of the “Born Here” initiative. and Biography Theatre.

The beginning of the controversy

It was reported that there is a work of art to dramatize Al-Shaarawi’s biography to present it on the national stage, and that the artist Kamal Abu Rayya will embody the personality of the late preacher in the first performances of the Biography Theater initiative next Ramadan.

In turn, the artist Ehab Fahmy, director of the National Theater, confirmed the news and that the show will deal with the biography of the imam, his upbringing, his life, and the most important situations he went through.

Mohamed Metwally El Shaarawy

Mohamed Metwally El Shaarawy

He added that cultural and artistic evenings will be launched under the slogan of the biography, which will review the history of Egyptian figures in all fields, with the aim of introducing the history of these symbols and their impact on the enlightenment march in Egypt throughout history.

He said that among these symbols, for example, Dr. Ahmed Zewail, the world writer Naguib Mahfouz, the philosopher Zaki Naguib Mahmoud, the imam Muhammad Abdo, the prince of poets Ahmed Shawky, the musician Muhammad Abdel Wahhab, the artist Zaki Tulaimat, the poet Salah Jahin, the poet Salah Abdel Sabour, and the artist Plastic artist Mahmoud Saeed, and poet Fouad Haddad.

However, Dr. Nevin Al-Kilani, Minister of Culture, intervened quickly after the launch of an attack campaign against Sheikh Al-Shaarawi, stressing that this announcement is not real at all, and that Al-Shaarawi’s name was presented as an example and not an affirmation, and this or other works were not announced.

And she revealed that Al-Shaarawi’s name has many reservations, explaining during a telephone conversation on the “Cairo and the People” satellite channel that there was a proposal submitted to hold evenings about some religious figures in the month of Ramadan, and that this was a proposal submitted by the director of the National Theater, and it was not presented to the committee until now.

She also indicated that the artist, Samiha Ayoub, heads this committee, which chooses the religious figures for whom evenings will be held on the national stage.

She emphasized that Al-Shaarawi’s name was put forward as an example and not as an affirmation, explaining that there must be a selection of enlightening figures who influence society at all levels on the national stage and have a positive impact in terms of enlightenment to combat extremist ideology.

fierce attack

In view of this, a campaign of attack against the late preacher began, as parliamentarian Farida Al-Shobashi submitted a request for a briefing in the House of Representatives against Mustafa Madbouly, the Prime Minister, and Dr. Defeat of 67, and he confidently said that he was happy to defeat Egypt?

And she continued, “How is it possible to consolidate the sense of national belonging for the viewers of this play, especially since Al-Shaarawi prohibited art and art money, in addition to inciting him not to put money in banks, because “bank interest is forbidden.”

After that, journalist Ibrahim Issa also launched an attack on his program on “Cairo and the People” satellite channel, showing videos of Sheikh Al-Shaarawi about his opinion of women, wife-beating and women’s work.

Al-Azhar responds

On the other hand, in the face of this attack, Al-Azhar did not stand silent, but rather intervened strongly to defend one of its sons, and refuted all of these accusations.

Al-Azhar confirmed that the imam of the preachers, Sheikh Al-Shaarawi, is an example of the enlightened moderate scholar, explaining that people were waiting for his weekly talks in front of television screens, and through the broadcast of the Holy Qur’an, and their conscience was linked to his speech and his thoughts about the book of God Almighty.

Al-Azhar said that the sheikh has honorable patriotic stances against the occupation forces, and successful efforts in refuting suspicions about Islam, the Qur’an, and our master, the Messenger of God, and providing rational and logical responses to them through media and field meetings with various segments of society, especially young people.

Sisi’s advisor intervenes

For his part, Dr. Osama Al-Azhari, the religious advisor to Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi, criticized the attackers of the late sheikh, stressing that Al-Shaarawi, in his view and the view of the sons of Al-Azhar and the children of the various scientific schools, represents an honorable model of the imams of knowledge, guidance and religion in the style of the great imams of Islam, and one of the greatest fruits of Al-Azhar Al-Sharif during the past century.

Al-Azhari described Al-Shaarawi as one of the doors to renewing religious discourse, pointing out that his project in interpreting the Qur’an found conscious ears, and resonated in the hearts and consciences of the Egyptians, and the hearts of the citizens clung to this great person who filled their hearts.

Al-Shaarawi described the barrier that protected the Egyptians from extremism, adding that fifty years ago, the late imam filled the world with knowledge.

“ignore abusers”

In addition, the engineer, Abd al-Rahman Mustafa, the former business manager of Sheikh al-Shaarawi, called on everyone to ignore the people who offend him, stressing in statements to that Sheikh al-Shaarawi was attached to everyone since childhood, and the most informative response to these abusers was the statement of Al-Azhar Al-Sharif, which was fair Imam preachers.

Mustafa said that there are people who stir up strife and talk about a sheikh who everyone clings to in his interpretation of the Holy Qur’an, stressing that the sons of Sheikh Al-Shaarawi do not comment on such actions and actions and do not pay attention to them.

Systematic bullying

In another development, Representative Karim Talaat al-Sadat, a member of the House of Representatives, submitted a request for a briefing to Counselor Dr. Hanafi Jabali, Speaker of the House, regarding the systematic insult to Sheikh Al-Shaarawi, as a national symbol and a religious value and stature that Muslims and Arabs cherish, considering the attack on him as unacceptable.

His birth and biography

It is noteworthy that Sheikh Muhammad Metwally Al-Shaarawi was born on April 15, 1911, in the village of Daqadous, Mit Ghamr Center, Dakahlia Governorate, north of Cairo.

He completed memorizing the Noble Qur’an at the age of eleven, and obtained the Azhar primary certificate in 1923 AD. He entered the Al-Azhar secondary institute, and his interest in poetry and literature increased.

After obtaining Al-Azhar secondary school, his father insisted that he complete his studies at Al-Azhar, and indeed he graduated from the Faculty of Arabic Language in 1940.

Among the most prominent positions through which Sheikh Al-Shaarawi served the Islamic Call were the position of Director of the Office of the Grand Imam Hassan Mamoun, the former Sheikh of Al-Azhar in 1964, head of the Al-Azhar Al-Sharif mission in Algeria in 1966, and Minister of Awqaf and Al-Azhar Affairs in 1976. He also held membership in the Islamic Research Academy in 1980, and the Language Academy. Arabia, and the Shura Council 1980.

Sheikh Al-Shaarawi has several scientific works, including: The Miracle of the Qur’an, Material Evidence for the Existence of God, You Ask, Islam Answers, Islam and Contemporary Thought, Issues of the Age, Critical Questions and Explicit Answers.

The Sheikh passed away at the age of eighty-seven, on June 17, 1998.

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