In the beginning of his advanced Fiqh course in the A‘zam Mosque in Qom, Ayatollah Makarem Shirazi emphasized the necessity of relying on the domestic capacity and potentials. His eminence stated in this regard: “A nation that is dependent upon other nations for everything is always humiliated”.
Ayatollah Makarem Shirazi also stressed the fact that the Muslims should always stand on their own feet and stated: “If the people of a state or a nation stand on their own feet, they will always preserve their honor and dignity, but if they depend on others for their needs, they will no longer be able to protect their honor”.
His eminence, then, added: “Of course we do not mean that various nations must not have relations or trade with each other. Nations do business with each other, but their business and trade is based on mutual profit. What is renounced here is when a nation tries to rub other nations of their resources”.
Ayatollah Makarem Shirazi continued his speech by referring to some ethical issues, and the necessity to seek refuge with the Quran and the Islamic teachings. He noted in this regard: “Today moral and ethical values are in danger; there are various corrupt media and internet-based websites which seek but to spread corruption among the youth; under such circumstances, we should be careful ourselves and also warn others about the dangers posed by such media”.
Ayatollah Makarem Shirazi called upon the teachers of the Islamic seminary schools to pay more attention to the teaching of ethical values in their classes and reiterated: “I ask the respectable teachers to pay more attention to this issue and allocate some time in their classes on a routine basis to the teaching of moral values and ethics”.
Later on during his Advanced Fiqh course, Ayatollah Makarem Shirazi referred to the Saudi’s crime of obstructing the path of Hajj and preventing the Iranian pilgrims from going on the Hajj pilgrimage. His eminence stated in this regard: “I have stated several times that the Saudis must not be in charge of the management of the two holy cities of Mecca and Medina”.
He also enumerated the reasons why the Saudis must not be in charge of managing the Hajj and the two holy cities, stating: “The first reason is that the two holy cities of Mecca and Medina belong to the entire Muslim world. Therefore, the best way is to encharge a board of Muslim scholars to work together and appoint a skilled group of people, who are experts in the issues related to the Hajj, to manage the Hajj and Umrah, and also the affairs of the two holy cities of Mecca and Medina”.
Referring to a Quranic verse in this regard, his eminence further noted: “The Quran explicitly states that all Muslims have equal rights concerning the House of Allah. Therefore, based on the directions of the Quran, the management of the two holy cities and the Hajj pilgrimage must be given to all Muslims, whether those who inhabit these two cities or those who travel there from other countries for the Hajj pilgrimage”.
Ayatollah Makarem Shirazi referred to the various disasters that happen every now and then during the Hajj rituals for the pilgrims as the second reason why the Saudis are unworthy of being in charge of the two holy cities. He stated in this regard: “Our past experience has shown that the Saudi Arabia is unable to manage the affairs of the two holy cities of Mecca and Medina by itself. We all remember the deadly incidents during the last year’s Hajj rituals; why should so many Muslims be killed in al-Masjid al-Harām and Mina during the Hajj season?”
His eminence further said: “A different example is the Arba‘een processions. Although the pilgrims who take part in the Arba‘een processions in Iraq are several times more than those who take part in the Hajj pilgrimage, thank God, nothing bad happens to any of them. This is of course because of the effective and proper management of the event. However, we have witnessed numerous tragic incidents during the Hajj rituals, although the number of Hajj pilgrims is much less than that of the Arba‘een pilgrims”.
Ayatollah Makarem Shirazi then added: “Of course the Saudis’ incapacity concerning the issue of the Hajj has not been restricted to the last year’s rituals. We have witnessed various tragic incidents during different years of the Hajj rituals. Therefore, we believe that the Saudis, for whatever reason it may be, are incapable of properly managing the Hajj pilgrimage”.
He further asserted: “This issue must be discussed in various Islamic communities, and everyone must come to the conclusion that the Hajj and the two holy cities of Mecca and Medina must be managed by all Muslims. Only in this way, can such disasters and tragedies be prevented”.
Ayatollah Makarem Shirazi, then, slammed the Saudi officials’ attempts to politicize the Hajj and noted: “The Iranian Muslims were unable to take part in this year’s Hajj pilgrimage and this was only due to political reasons. The Saudis have sustained heavy defeats in Iraq, Yemen, and Syria, and now they want to take their revenge in the issue of the Hajj; this was why they stipulated certain conditions for the Iranian pilgrims that we find totally unacceptable”.
Ayatollah Makarem Shirazi, then addressed the Saudi officials and noted: “Do you suppose that the two holy cities of Mecca and Medina are your personal property that you behave like this?! These two holy cities belong to all Muslims”.
His eminence further informed of a number of research studies being conducted in regards to the affairs of the two holy cities of Mecca and Medina and stated: “A number of studies have already been conducted in regards to this issue and a draft of a statute has been prepared to be sent to all prominent Muslim scholars and thinkers. We hope that after we have agreed on this draft, it can be put in to practice in order to resolve the problems regarding the affairs of the Hajj and the two holy cities”.
In the end, Ayatollah Makarem Shirazi prayed for the resolution of the problems of the Muslim world and stated: “I hope that Allah the Almighty eliminates those who seek to politicize what is considered to be sacred in Islam”.