Rexhep Vokë – Tetova, Mufti of Manastir
The book “Thoughts” is written in the Albanian language using the Ottoman alphabet. Voka, like many other Albanian authors, who have written their works in Oriental languages – mainly in Turkish, Persian and Arabic – wrote this work in a rhymed prose. Obviously, such a format had a great influence in the Oriental literature. Here we will not dwell on detailed analysis because this is not our goal, but we just want to present Rexhep Voka’s work to all those who deal with studying the issues of the history of our national culture. Only in this way – since this work in its form, was not familiar to the majority of scholars so far – we think opportunities are created for a work to be truly appreciated. Understandably, this must be done by weighing it with the scales of his time and the circumstances in which this work was born.
02- Hafiz Ali Kraja, “Is religion necessary? Does it hamper the national unity?”
Xhorxhina Seferi, Bedër University College
Hafiz Ali Kraja is considered as one of the prominent personalities of the Albanian world. He was well versed and was not only equipped with theological formation, but he also was an intellectual scholar. He contributed to the preaching of religion in relation to the needs and problems of the time. He helped in the propagation of the knowledge, the defense of the homeland, and the interest of the national cause. The oratory and the patriotism he had in his speeches had a lot of influence on the people. Hafiz Ali Kraja has given great importance to the national unity, explaining that religion is not an obstacle to national unity. He emphasizes that humanity needs religion in a spiritual, moral, legal and social viewpoint. Hafiz Ali Kraja has given a great significance to morality, claiming that the foundation of morality should be based in the religion. He has also given a particular importance to the explanation of Islam in relation to fanaticism, atheism and secularism. He also wrote about the old civilization, which cannot be separated from religion and has tackled the world’s problems after the general war. The issues discussed are explained by verses from the Holy Quran and Hadith of Prophet Muhammad (SAWS).
03- “The Discourse That Became the Keystone of Religion”
Prof. Assoc. Dr. Rahim Ombashi, Bedër University College
The Albanian society’s performance during the Albanian National Renaissance period has been accompanied by the enrichment and development of the Albanian language, which in turn has helped the development and progress of the Albanian society in not just one aspect. Critical thinking supplemented by Hegelian metaphysics helped the Albanian religious leaders to use the discerning discourse of the bookstore as a style which was used in its beginnings through publications to draw national understanding and accompanied by the tenderness that he needed so much. This kind of discourse that kept alive the hope and faith for the future, approaching the rationality that hampers the emotional decisions, harshing the patience of all who worked for national brotherhood, as a step further on the path of creating national consciousness and protecting the Albanian identity. The philosophy of gentleness and patience, the relevant vocabulary, the clenched spirit, and the context of its use, speaks of the efficiency of the style of communication, and, on the other hand, the spiritual prosperity of the Albanian speakers who came through it to compose national conscience and not least other impacts from this kind of linguistic communication, which proved to be very successful. Thin library discourse became a model and enriched the conversational discourse by weakening the claustrophobia, which massively ill with us, opening the way for the philosophy as the key to the expected integration.
Little research, their approaches, and the analysis of the findings will be complemented by models that document novelty, which was brought to light by the formation of the Albanian citizen and on the other hand, he perfected himself.
Armed with this kind of mindset and with the kind of linguistic tools needed, the exquisite library discourse was made to the side of Albanian emigrants in the places where they lived, serving there in the benefit of the national cause.
Keywords: brotherhood, preacher, mindset, claustrophobia, counselor, philosene, understanding
04- “The Madrassahs of Shkodra” (from the beginning to 1947)
Prof. dr. Njazi Kazazi
Department of Linguistics, University of Shkodra “L. Gurakuqi”
This study was carried out in order to illuminate the work of teachers and students of the Shkodra madrassahs and to point out the precious help they have provided in the national issues and the education of new generations; with the objective to put into the right place what was denied for half a century, and to give them the importance they deserve in the history of Albanian education. Such a legitimate right is made possible due to the blessed days of democracy that came to us. But, as a well-known poet has written, for us “… democracy is not just an electronic calculating machine to dig in newspapers and magazines of half a century ago, and to count phrases and expressions published by the authors and use them as accusatory arguments”.
05- Mawlana Jalāl ad-Dīn Muhammad Rūmī -Symbol of Love (II)
Msc. Dorian Demetja, Muslim Community of Albania
Although nearly eight centuries have passed since his time, Mawlana’s messages never get old, still keeping their original freshness and vitality within us. Designed to convince people that they can do miracles through love, Mawlana has been studied for centuries by many universities and renowned researchers around the world. According to him, the divine love implies a mutual love: God’s love for humans and humans love for Him. Such mutual love, between God and humans has a common nature, it is a light that shines everywhere and always, it represents the sincere light of existence and the invitation to existence in reality. According Mawlana, the paths that lead to the Creator are open to all who strive hard enough. The only thing to do is throwing away the treasures of this world in order to be enriched by the Lord’s love. As he always emphasized, “Man needs two things: love and teared eyes”.
06- History of the Albanian personalities from Vilayet of Ioannina (1859-1909)
Syrja bej Vlora
The book of Syrja bej Vlora “The story of the Albanian personalities from Vilayet of Ioannina (1859-1909)” is an encyclopedic work of an indisputable value for the Albanian historiography. This because firstly, it was the first attempt made on this issue, at a time when our scientific institutions were not established yet; and secondly, the information provided in it regarding some historical personalities constitutes a novelty.
In a footnote of the preface of the manuscript in Albanian regarding these biographies, the translator Jonuz Tafilaj writes that they were prepared as an annex to the work of Syrja bey Vlora previously translated by Ali Asllani. However, based on their volume, these biographies constitute a separate book. Therefore, given that they have not previously been integrated into any version of the already published book of Syrja bey Vlora, we are bringing it for publication for the first time in the scientific journal “Zani i Naltë”.
This script is written in the Ottoman language and, together with the translation into Albanian, is found in the Central State Archive of Tirana. He has in total 78 pages in Ottoman and 120 pages in Albanian, translated by the renowned Orientalist Jonuz Tafilaj. In the inventory compiled by the head of the Ottoman manuscript sector in the historical archive, the orientalist Haki Sharofi, it is writen the date of receipt of this translation (June 26, 1963). As for the time when it was written by Syrja bey Vlora, we still have no data.
Although this manuscript translation is in the northern (Gheg) dialect and contains a considerable amount of errors, we have tried to intervene only where it was indispensably necessary. This, because the dialects, in addition to the translations done in a given period, are a tremendous asset and bear the stamp of the time.
The book provides information on the most prominent personalities of Southern Albania, who, from an administrative point of view, were included in Vilayet of Janina at that time. Here is briefly written, and sometimes even longer, about the formation, role and contribution of the famous personalities of the Albanian world. Furthermore, in this book one can find a lot of details, which, given that they are written as an integral part of a memorial book, cannot be found in any other book. This enriches and makes it more beautiful to the reader, but also more valuable as a historiographical source for scholars.
Despite the level of translation and mistakes, we think that publishing this part of the book at the “Zani i Naltë” magazine, is necessary. This is a homage to the forgotten and unjustly anathemaed author, to the honored translator, orientalist Jonuz Tafilaj and, finally, to Albanian historiography and memorialistics.
Dr. Hasan Bello
07- Review on the book “Halvetti Tariqqah among the Albanians” by the scholar Dr. Alban Dobruna
Dr. Ilirjana Kaceli, Bedër University College
During the post-communist period, in Albanian historiography, a series of new studies – particularly in the historical, but also in the religious field – based on archival documents and authentic sources, have been carried out so far. However, when speaking about the field of the religions of Albanian historiography, we can assert there is a lack of a proper study on sufism and Islamic tariqqahs. The monograph that we are discussing about, has been compiled for one of these Islamic tariqqahs, the Halvetti tariqqah to the Albanians. Researcher Alban Dobruna comes to the readers with new facts and assertments, from the scientific point of view, shedding light on the historical, social and cultural factors that influenced the development and propagation of the activity of this tariqqah, from the founding to the present day. In this work, the author for the first time provides the reader with a different view from what we have been used to read so far on the history of religions. Through varius archival data and resources, we get enlightened by the analysis carried out on them. The work done by the author himself, as a writer of this book, shows that its compilation required a deep knowledge of the Albanian historiography in general and especially the history of religious affairs to Albanians. Halvetti’s contribution to the Albanian National Movement, in the formation and consolidation of the Albanian state, brings the efforts of all Albanians regardless of religion in the Movement for Autonomy and Independence at the end of the 19th century and early 20th century, as well as their contribution in improving the social situation of Albanian people.
08- Salih efendi Myftia (1891-1978)
Mufti of Shkodra and Kosovo (Gjakova), Leader of Muslim Albanians in the US
Salih Efendi Myftia was born in 1891 in Shkodra, in a prominent familiar, intellectual, religious and social environment. He received the first lessons in the Madrassah of Shkodra and then met in Vlora the well-known intellectual and theologian Haxhi Vehbi Dibra, the mufti of that city at the time, showing a special commitment to religious knowledge. Since an early age he had good knowledge in Oriental languages: Arabic, Persian and Turkish. Very soon he gained the sympathy of the inhabitants of his homeland, and with his commitment and dedication, he elevated the image of prominent religious leaders. A special attention he had given to the enrichment of the family library, which he had inherited from the ancestors. This library has been mentioned in many press organs, but it can be noted that it was among the oldest and most complete library available, containing religious, philosophical works and many books of other branches of science where Salih Efendi studied and supplemented his cultural and religious background. Unfortunately, this 300-year-old library has completely vanished because of the destructive billow and persecution of the atheistic political spirit.
09- New Initiatives for Cooperation between Religions (II)
Since universal friendship (fellowship, brotherhood) is a desirable goal, people of faith must guide their forces towards the development of this companionship and summarize its accomplishment with seriousness and full confidence. This seriousness must address the religious consciousness – for which we have discussed to – and benefit from the powerful influence that this awareness has to the spirit of the faithful and from the legacy of its purpose as well as by the instinct that skins the nature of the human beings soul. It is necessary to start from here the development of a universal fellowship.
The accomplishing of this great goal for the universal brotherhood and its development can be done through the religious awareness of all religions as well as through the practical virtue and good social principles found in each religion.
In all religions there are many divine principles that serve the good and the benefit of mankind and therefore, every religious should be a useful social organ.
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