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SPEECH AT THE TAKHT NASHINI CEREMONY Dar-es-Salaam - 1957-10-19

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Event - 1957-10-19
Date: 
Saturday, 1957, October 19
Location: 
takhtn.jpg
Author: 
Aga Khan IV (H.H. Prince Karim)

Your Excellencies, Your Highness, Your Worship, Ladies and Gentlemen, My spiritual children

I would like to begin this reply to your kind addresses by thanking the whole city of Dar-es-Salaam for the wonderful welcome given [to] me and the magnificent festivities which have marked this occasion.

On behalf of the community and myself, I would like to say a special word of thanks to His Excellency the Governor and to Lady Twining, to all their staff and specially to the police, who have looked after the huge crowds visiting the ceremony with such patience and cheerfulness.

On behalf of the community, I would also like to extend a special welcome to Her Majesty's Secretary of State for the Colonies, who is honouring us with his presence here today.

My grandfather often reminded you that we are living in the atomic age. But what in fact do we mean when we say this? Certainly we mean more than the age of 'the red moon'. The most significant thing about the atomic age is the new and unbounded sources of energy which are released for the use of mankind. In Europe and America today, power stations are springing up which need no coal, nor oil, nor water power to run them. They feed themselves. This is close to the secret of perpetual motion.

In my life-time, it is almost certain that such atomic power stations will be exported, very likely to countries like Tanganyika. From them will flow the energy which will create new towns, railways, factories and all the foundations of modern industrial progress. These things are still far off. But they will come. They will affect all your lives in the next half century. With this material progress will come many difficulties as well as many blessings. This will affect, not only the Ismailis, but all who live in this territory, and perhaps even the whole of Africa. I shall devote my life to guiding the community in all the problems which these rapid changes will bring in their wake.

However, it should not be believed that material progress is all that counts. As so many advanced nations are finding to their cost, man's mastery of physical forces has far outstripped his mastery of himself. His mind cannot grapple with the complexities his hands have created. That is why my grandfather attached so much importance to education in our community.

Today, I believe education is more important than ever before. But remember that education does not stop at the school room; it continues through the newspapers, the radio, films and particularly television. One teacher can reach hundreds of thousands of children at the same time through the television set. Sooner or later the same thing will happen here in Tanganyika. The Ismaili community must prepare itself for changes of this magnitude. We must identify ourselves with Tanganyika and move forward with all the other communities in this rapidly advancing country. I do not think that the great progress I have spoken about will make our lives any less happy than in the past.

The faith by which we live is the only sure guarantee that our problems will be surmounted. The younger people among you must be especially aware of this. Only the faith of your fathers will enable you to live in peace.


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