Some days back I had the good fortune to perform my fajr (pre-dawn) prayers at a new institution established by a younging chap of Fiji-Indian extraction. The al-Mustapha Institute has been established by Noor-ul-Hassan Al-Hijazi, a graduate of Hijaz College in the United Kingdom.
Also present were a number of local Brisbane people as well as Hadhrat Imam Shaykh Afroz Ali, founder of the al-Ghazali Centre in Sydney and a qualified imam in the Islamic tradition. Regular readers of this blog will know that Allama Afroz was also once a graduate of the Islamic University of Madina, though his degrees seem to have been lost somewhere. Either that, or his studies have taken him to Madina and then onto somewhere else. You figure it out.
I couldn't help but ask the head of the Al-Mustapha Institute about his training. I asked him about ...
* where he studied;
* how many years he studied for;
* what subjects he studied;
* what qualifications he received;
* what form those qualifications took.
He answered all these questions without any hesitation. Indeed, he volunteered more information such as who some of his teachers were and even the nature of the graduation ceremony.
Sayyidina Ayatullah Afroz was present during these discussions, though he did look somewhat uncomfortable to say the least.
So will Maulana Pir Abul Bayaan Afroz provide us with details of his precise qualifications with the same degree of candor and honesty? I'm certainly not holding my breath.
Words © 2010 Irfan Yusuf
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