A Racing and Breeding Tradition: The Horses of the Aga Khan [Hardcover]
Philip Jodidio (Author)
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Mawlana Hazar Imam arrives in Egypt to participate in forum to combat human trafficking
Mawlana Hazar Imam meeting with Her Excellency Suzanne Mubarak, the First Lady of Egypt, at the Old Winter Palace in Luxor. Hazar Imam is attending the Luxor International Forum to Combat Human Trafficking. Photo: Gary Otte
Luxor, Egypt, 10 December 2010 —Mawlana Hazar Imam arrived in Egypt today to attend the Luxor International Forum to Combat Human Trafficking. Upon his arrival, Hazar Imam met with Her Excellency Suzanne Mubarak, the First Lady of Egypt, at the Old Winter Palace in Luxor.
Part of the “End Human Trafficking Now!” campaign, the Forum brings the United Nations Global Initiative to Fight Human Trafficking (UN.GIFT) and the business community together to find solutions that will put an end to human trafficking. Organised by the Suzanne Mubarak Women’s International Peace Movement, the Luxor Forum represents a milestone in international efforts to combat such crime.
The Forum will also announce the winner of the first-ever Business Leader's Award to Fight Human Trafficking. Mawlana Hazar Imam was invited to sit as a member of the jury for the award.
Her Excellency Suzanne Mubarak
Founder and President of the Women’s International Peace Movement
H.E. Mrs. Suzanne Mubarak is a social scientist. She spent her early career studying closely disadvantaged communities to understand better ways and means of improving their living conditions. These early experiences have greatly shaped her outlook and determination to place the human being at the centre of all development activities.
His Highness the Aga Khan
His Highness the Aga Khan, a direct lineal descendant of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), is the 49th hereditary Imam - spiritual leader - of the Shia Ismaili Muslims. Consistent with general Muslim tradition, the Imam’s mandate is to guide his community in matters of faith, and to work for its security and improved quality of life, alongside that of wider society. The Aga Khan is the founder and Chairman of the Aga Khan Development Network (AKDN), a group of non-denominational international development agencies, active in 38 countries, dedicated to improving the quality of life of vulnerable societies.
Mr. Antonio Maria Costa
Executive Director of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime 2002 - 2010
Mr. Antonio Maria Costa served as Executive Director of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) and Director-General of the United Nations Office in Vienna (UNOV) from 2002 to 2010. Mr. Costa was born in Italy. He holds a degree in political science from the University of Turin (1963), a Degree in mathematical economics from the Moscow State University (1967), and a Ph.D. in economics from the University of California at Berkeley (1971). From 1969 to 1983, Mr. Costa served as senior economist in the United Nations Department of International Economics and Social Affairs in New York.
Mr. Georg Kell
Executive Director of the United Nations Global Compact Office
Georg Kell is the Executive Director of the United Nations Global Compact, the world’s largest voluntary corporate responsibility initiative with More than 6,000 participants in over 130 countries. Spanning More than two decades, his career with the United Nations began in 1987 at the UN Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) in Geneva. In 1997, Mr. Kell joined the Office of the UN Secretary-General in New York,
Mr. Henrik O. Madsen
President and CEO of Det Norske Veritas
Dr. Madsen is the President and CEO of DNV, a leading international provider of services for managing risk and an independent foundation with the purpose of safeguarding life, property and the environment. Dr. Madsen began his career in DNV in Oslo in 1982 as Chief Scientist in Structural Reliability Analysis. Since then Dr. Madsen has held various leading positions in DNV. In May 2006, Dr. Madsen assumed the position as President and CEO of DNV. He introduced ambitious strategic goals for DNV to grow and focus its services towards selected industry sectors. Dr. Madsen’s attention today is very much focused on corporate responsibility, environment and climate change issues, and how DNV can contribute to a safe and sustainable future. Dr. Madsen is a Council member of the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD).,
Aga Khan: Informing and Inspiring, Historically and Scientifically 12/28/2010
All of us know the Aga Khan and Natural Science Museum (called “Aga Khan” only by most), but most of us simply consider it as a gallery and display of historical and cultural relics and preserved cadavers of some animal species, without minding its great importance not only about for studies and researches but also in inspiring the preservation and retention of our culture and environment as well. Almost all of us have visited this museum but the sad fact is that we’ve only been there for a “sight-seeing galore”.
This museum still stands after so many decades since its birth. This pioneering structure, which was established and erected a few years after MSU was built, was donated by Prince Karim Aga Khan so that MSU will have a museum for the research and study of the students as well as the instructors.
Formerly called Aga Khan Museum, this building contains historical relics, objects, musical instruments, weapons, tools, and evidences of the artistic craftsmanship of Meranaos and other tribes. A few years after its establishment, the Natural Science Museum was finally realized and place at the second floor of the former one-floor museum for the natural and scientific studies of animal and plant species.
Remaining firm and well-formed up to this day, the said museum has withstood the changing weather conditions and calamities that have struck the country of the past years and the past eleven administrators of MSU (Pres. Muslim is the twelfth). All these upsetting features and conditions have made the museum suffer. Despite this, the contents and objects inside remained complete and preserved (although a few of them have already destroyed and gone).
As what we have seen today, every object has been detailed with their local names, information and facts. Fascinating right? As we passed by, each object has been labeled already. The pictures of the past administrators in MSU and opening event of the Museum can be found on its walls. As we climbed upstairs to second floor, we can find pictures, illustrations and mapping of several existing and extinct species of fishes that can be found in Lake Lanao.
The species of some wild animals, birds and plants are found in the right portion of the second floor. As have been the other objects, they are also labeled with their names both local and scientific and places where could they be found. Some types of corals and shells are also found in the said portion.
The other portion of the second floor held the rest of objects from the Meranao people and other tribes, the antique copy of the Holy Qur’ an in which its printing and distribution was dated back during the period of the Ottoman Empire (Wow!), and of course, the attire that was used by MSU’s first president, Dr. Antonio Isidro, an old paper bill that was once given to him, a ribbon during his visit in South Korea as a delegate, and a golf ball that he used before.
Seems weird, right? But they are obviously displayed up to now. The bust of the donor of the said museum, Prince Karim Aga Khan, can also be found.
So let’s ponder now. Let’s meditate about the great importance of this museum which is not only to inform, but also to make us inspired to love our own colorful culture and heritage, to protect and take good care of our nature, and to preserve all these things whole, whatever changes and transformations that have almost ruined them.
PARIS — His Highness the Aga Khan may have one of the most revered thoroughbred racing and breeding operations now but when it was first bestowed on him 50 years ago he was terrified that he would bring it to an ignominious end.
The 74-year-old Swiss-born philanthropist and spiritual leader of the Ismaili branch of Shia Muslims makes his frank admission in a fascinating and beautifully illustrated book, written by Philip Jodidio, celebrating his half century in the business.
In 1957, the Aga Khan was chosen as successor by his grandfather who passed over his father Aly a war hero, playboy and vice-president of the United Nations, who was married twice including to Hollywood star Rita Hayworth.
He said that without any prior involvement with the racing business he felt like a duck out of water.
Having already assumed the role of Imam of the Ismailis in 1957 at a young age, the tragic death of his father in a car accident in 1960 saw him thrust into another new world - that of the thoroughbred industry, an empire assiduously built up by his grandfather and his father.
"The idea of entering into an activity that was in no way central to the Ismaili Imamat, an activity in which no member of my family - neither my brother nor my sister nor I - had any understanding, in itself raised a major question mark," he told the author in his typical humble and understated manner.
"Would I have the time, and the capacity, to learn something about an activity with which I was totally unfamiliar? When the leader of a family endeavour disappears, the next generation does not necessarily carry on.
"In this particular case, I was very much aware of the fact that this had been a family tradition for many generations and that it had been immensely successful at the time of my grandfather and father.
"To be the new young owner who would come in and cause the operation to collapse was not exactly what I wanted!"
The Aga Khan, who away from the rarefied atmosphere of racing has among other things helped finance the reconstruction of the historic Mostar bridge which was destroyed during the Balkan Wars in the 1990's, confesses that part of his wish to carry on was the strong bonds that had been created between his grandfather and father with the staff.
"The year that my father died, he was having remarkable success with the racing operation. As a young man who knew nothing, I found this success daunting.
"There were a large number of people who had devoted a great deal of time to this activity, people who had been very loyal to my father and my grandfather. My father only owned the operation for three years.
"He actually inherited most of the key people who had worked over a long period with my grandfather. There was a context of strong human relations and loyalty, and I was geuninely uncomfortable with not respecting that should I have decided not to continue.
"On the other hand, I imagined that these people might look to me in five years' time and say: 'How on earth did this happen: we ended in the hands of a twenty-three year-old who doesn't know which end of a horse kicks!" That was a most unpleasant thought," he said in his disarming trademark style.
However, it was his association with another French training legend Francois Mathet that turned his operation around, for having had to sell his best breeding stock to pay death duties when his father had died, he started to purchase new bloodlines which have been the fruit of his success.
He purchased down the years among others the breeding operations of textile king Marcel Boussac, who was famously slapped in the parade ring at Longchamp by a woman disgusted at his alleged collaboration during World War II, and successful businessman Jean-Luc Lagardere, when he died after complications involving a routine operation.
Despite breeding such great horses as wonder filly Zarkava, unbeaten in seven races and who in 2008 became the first filly to land the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe since Urban Sea in 1993, he will in the public's eye forever be best remembered for the ill-fated Shergar.
The mind-bogglingly easy winner of the 1981 Epsom Derby - so convincing that John Matthias the jockey of the second horse Glint of Gold actually believed he had won the race because he couldn't see the winner - was kidnapped by persons unknown from the Aga Khan's then flagship Irish stud Ballymany in February 1983.
Despite a nationwide search led by the unorthodox Chief Superintendent Jim Murphy no trace of the great horse was ever found, but despite this hugely embarrassing episode the Aga Khan maintained his racing and breeding operation there and bought the historic Gilltown Stud.
Indeed he is remarkably forgiving of what took place - a reflection of the common touch he possesses which quite often sees him wandering round Longchamp racecourse like any normal racegoer.
"That was a tragedy, but that was Ireland at the time."
The Jamati Institutions and Mukhi Kamadia Sahebs are pleased to inform the Jamat that Mawlana Hazar Imam is currently visiting the United States. Mawlana Hazar Imam arrived in San Francisco on Monday, April 25th. The University of California at San Francisco is honoring Mawlana Hazar Imam tonight with a UCSF Medal, its highest award, as part of its annual Founders’ Day celebrations.
To commemorate this happy occasion, on Friday April 29th, a brief video and details of the visit will be shared with the Jamat. Cake and sherbet will also be served after Jamati ceremonies.
On this happy occasion, we convey mubarakis to the Jamat and offer our humble shukrana to Mawlana Hazar Imam for gracing us with His visit to the United States.
Luminaries awarded UCSF Medal
Awarded annually, the UCSF Medal replaces the granting of honorary degrees and is bestowed on individuals who have attained preeminence in an area that is in support of UCSF's mission. I am very pleased to announce the 2011 UCSF Medal recipients:
His Highness the Aga Khan, 49th hereditary Imam (spiritual leader) of the Shia Ismaili Muslims, Founder and Chairman of the Aga Khan Development Network, and Chancellor of the Aga Khan University
Dr. Elizabeth Blackburn, Nobel Laureate and Morris Herzstein Endowed Chair in Biology and Physiology in the Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics at UCSF
Dr. Marvin H. Sleisenger, Emeritus Professor of Medicine and Distinguished Physician, Department of Veterans Affairs
PARIS, France, May 4 (APP): Prime Minister Syed Yusuf Raza Gilani on Wednesday attended a dinner hosted by Prince Karim Aga Khan, the spiritual leader of Aga Khan community.The Prime Minister arrived at Aiglemont - the estate of Prince Aga Khan, which is situated in the north of Paris.The dinner was also attended by Minister for Water and Power Syed Naveed Qamar, State Minister for Foreign Affairs Hina Rabbani Khar and Advisor to PM on Minorities Affairs Dr. Paul Jacob Bhatti.
A VILLAGE will be cut in two during Queen Elizabeth's visit next week.
Roads around Kilcullen in Co Kildare will be sealed off and streets shut down as the British monarch travels to the county to visit two of Ireland's leading studs.
The highlight of her four-hour journey to Co Kildare will be a walk to the stallion shed at Gilltown Stud to visit one of the greatest racehorses of all-time, Sea the Stars.
Formerly trained by John Oxx on the Curragh, Sea the Stars won six group one races as a three-year-old in 2009 and has been described by Mr Oxx as "the point to which thoroughbred breeding has arrived after 300 years".
The queen, who is a keen racegoer and the owner of several outstanding horses in the past, will see the Irish star at Gilltown Stud, which is located outside Kilcullen. The stud is owned by the Aga Khan, who will host a special private reception for his distinguished guest.
The queen will begin her trip to Kildare on Thursday week with a journey down the M7 motorway to the National Stud in Kildare town.
She will spend about half an hour at the stud, where she will meet leading representatives of the Irish horseracing industry.
As part of the security arrangements, the National Stud and adjacent Japanese Gardens will be closed to the public from Tuesday to Thursday next week and will re-open on Friday.
The queen's cavalcade will then travel across the Curragh plains and through Athgarvan and Kilcullen before arriving at Gilltown, where a guided tour of the stud will be followed by the reception.
Residents living along the route of her proposed itinerary are being interviewed by gardai and asked to give details of the occupants of the houses and their likely whereabouts during the planned visit.
A number of alternative routes have also been drawn up by senior garda officers in their contingency planning.
Six hundred gardai will be deployed along the routes within the county as officers prepare for four days of what is being called the biggest saturation policing operation ever mounted on the island.
Officers said that peaceful protests would be policed in the normal manner, but anybody attempting to block the cavalcade or interfere with arrangements would not be tolerated.
4TH MAY 2011 A sumptuous dinner was hosted by Prince Karim Aga Khan Fatimid Imam Caliph in the honor of Prime Minister of Pakistan at his personal estate of Aiglemont Chantilly France. The Aiglemont is situated in the French historical small town of Chantilly Gouvieux which is about 40 km away from north of Paris.The town of Chantilly is worldly known for the historical castle of Condé and for its beautiful natural environment.The dinner was attended by the 28 VIPs, entourage of Prime Minister, including the Minister of State for the Foreign Affairs, Ms.Hina Rabbani Khar, and Syed Naveed Qamar, Minister for the Privatization, Mr.Asfandyar Wali Khan a MNA of ANP, the Chairman of Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs, and also Dr.Paul Jacob Bhatti the advisor to Prime Minister on minorities affairs.There were also a good number of MNAs of the various political parties of Pakistan.The all entourage admired the cordial hospitality of Aga Khan which showed his deep love for Pakistan.
A Global Partnership for Girls’ and Women’s Education will be launched at a high level forum to be held at UNESCO Headquarters on Thursday 26 May.
UNESCO Director-General Irina Bokova will welcome participants to the event, followed by opening remarks from United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and United States Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton. The keynote speech for the Forum will be made by the Prime Minister of Bangladesh, Sheikha Hasina.
Prime Minister of Mali Cissé Mariam Kaïdama Sidibé, the Aga Khan, founder and chairman of the Aga Khan Development Network Foundation, and representatives of several corporate giants participating in the partnership including Nokia, Procter and Gamble, GEMS Education, Microsoft and the Packard Foundation, will also participate.
Globally, some 39 million girls of lower secondary age are currently not enrolled in either primary or secondary education, while two thirds of the world’s 796 million illiterate adults are women. Only about one third of countries have achieved gender parity at secondary level.
‘Better Life, Better Future’ will seek collaborative and innovative solutions to the most fundamental obstacles and challenges to education for women and adolescent girls. A number of projects are already underway in several countries.
Aga Khan celebrates 50 years of success in racing
Take a good look at the filly foal pictured here with her mother.
A star is born: Zarkava with her filly foal by Dalakhani Photo: AGA KHAN
By HOTSPUR (J A McGrath)
7:40PM BST 19 Jul 2011
This may be the first sight of the winner of the 2014 King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes.
This beautiful portrait of the unbeaten 2008 Arc winner Zarkava and her foal by Dalakhani, another winner of France’s top race, captures the look of a champion, and possibly, a future one too.
The study of the brilliant Zarkava and her daughter can be found on the front cover of A Racing and Breeding Tradition, The Horses of the Aga Khan, written by Philip Jodidio, a commissioned work to celebrate the legendary owner-breeder’s fifty years in racing.
It is a magnificent volume, beautifully photographed, with the detailed story of the Aga Khan’s family history and its ongoing commitment to racing.
Starting with the first Aga Khan, who was born in Kahak, Iran, in 1804 but later based in what was then called Bombay, the rich and fascinating history of one of the world’s great racing dynasties, is told with great flair. The current Aga Khan is as familiar a sight on European racecourses as was his grandfather, Aga Khan III, who owned the second winner of the King George, the 1952 winner Tulyar, ridden by Charlie Smirke.
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Perhaps it is appropriate to be reviewing this work in the week of the King George, as Prince Aly Khan’s Petite Etoile finished second to Aggressor, trained by Towser Gosden, in the 1960 running. When Aly Khan was killed in a car crash, his son took over his horses, mares and stud farms, because “I felt it was part of our family history.”
Petite Etoile was a notoriously shy breeder, but her only filly, called Zahra (by Habitat), became the great grand-dam of Zarkava.
The Aga Khan IV has won the King George three times. With the unforgettable Shergar in 1981, Alamshar (2003) and Azamour (2005), the latter having the distinction of winning the only running that took place at Newbury. The race was staged there owing to the redevelopment of Ascot.
Remarkably, Zarkava’s filly foal has already changed colour, having turned grey, like her father. Zarkava is now carrying a foal by Sea The Stars. Now what price that one for the 2015 King George?
Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird meets with His Highness the Aga Khan, 49th hereditary Imam of the Shia Imami Ismaili Muslims, in Paris on September 2, 2011. They met to discuss the issue of combating religious intolerance and Canada’s commitment to create the Office of Religious Freedom. Minister Baird and the Aga Khan also took the opportunity to discuss the situation in the Middle East and North Africa. [Return...]
Agakhan Collection part of a new survey of 800 years of Indian painting that is about to open at the Metropolitan Museum of Art
"The paintings come from the Met’s own collection and the Rietberg Museum in Zurich (where the show originated), as well as from a number of other public and private collections. Mansur’s chameleon is one of six loans from Queen Elizabeth. The City Palace Museum in Udaipur has sent works never loaned before. Although diplomatic complications prevented the miniatures from Tehran and St Petersburg that were shown in Switzerland from travelling to America, the Met’s version of “Wonder of the Age” has added works from the Aga Khan’s collection and the Bodleian Library in Oxford. The Freer Gallery in Washington, DC, has sent its treasured 17th-century masterpiece, “Humayun Seated in a Landscape”, which was painted by Payag for Jahangir’s son, the emperor Shah Jahan."
MHI gives a keynote address at Paris conference of the International Federation of Horseracing Authorities
The keynote speaker was the Aga Khan, who in addition to being the spiritual leader of millions of Shiite Muslims has bred or owned 36 European Classic winners and operates France’s largest breeding operation. He also got the biggest laugh of the afternoon, from delegates listening through headphones as his remarks were simultaneously translated from English into French, German, Italian, Japanese, and Spanish:
“I was reminded the other day of a particularly generous and kindly lady,” said His Highness, “who took pity on one of the less fortunate people she encountered on the street as she took a walk one day. Impulsively, she handed him a 20-Euro note and murmured in a kind, quiet voice, ‘Godspeed, my good man.’
“The next day, the same man came up to her and handed her a 100-Euro note. ‘What is this for?’ she asked. ‘Haven’t you heard?’ said the man. ’Godspeed came in at 5 to 1 at Longchamp.’ ”
The Council for USA is pleased to inform the Jamat that earlier today, Mawlana Hazar Imam was awarded the J.C. Nichols prize for visionaries in urban development by the Urban Land Institute.
The award was made at the annual meeting of the Urban Land Institute in Los Angeles, California.
Accepting the award on behalf of Mawlana Hazar Imam was Luis Monreal, General Manager of the Aga Khan Trust for Culture.
This $100,000 prize is awarded every three years to a person whose career demonstrates a commitment to the highest standards of responsible development.
The award jury selected Mawlana Hazar Imam for his strong leadership of a stunning variety of development and philanthropic endeavors throughout poor communities struggling to improve their living conditions.
The two AKDN agencies that the award jury particularly noted were the Aga Khan Planning and Building Services and the Aga Khan Trust for Culture.
The Urban Land Institute stated, "In a time of both unrest and great hope in the Arab and Muslim worlds, the jury was moved to honor a leader who has raised the quality of life in these regions without regard to nationality, creed, or gender.
Standing with Illinois Governor Pat Quinn, Mawlana Hazar Imam speaks at the signing of an Agreement of Cooperation between the State of Illinois and the Ismaili Imamat on 4 November 2011. Photo: Farhez Rayani
Chicago, 4 November 2011 — At the invitation of Illinois State Governor Patrick “Pat” Quinn, Mawlana Hazar Imam travelled to Chicago today to sign an Agreement of Cooperation between the State of Illinois and the Ismaili Imamat. During the visit, Hazar Imam and Governor Quinn and their representatives also held talks on a range of issues of mutual interest, including early childhood education and media and communications.
The Agreement of Cooperation, the third such agreement with a US state, marks a historic milestone. It establishes a basis for long term collaborative programmes between the State and the institutions of the Imamat in the fields of education, environmental stewardship and management, health sciences, library and information sciences, infrastructure development, agricultural sustainability, and culture.
Describing Mawlana Hazar’s Imam work, Governor Quinn expressed that “the great work of the Aga Khan Foundation, the Aga Khan University, the Network and people of his faith were quite inspirational” and that the Imam himself embodied the “definition of humanitarian — a man of the world and somebody who has a servant’s heart”. In thanking Mawlana Hazar Imam for his visit to Illinois, “and his commitment in our state, in our country, in our world, to making it a better world,” Governor Quinn added, “I think that should be the mission of all of us that were put on earth, and given life by God, and what we do with our life is our gift back to God. Whatever faith you practice, it is important to understand that we are all together on this planet earth.”
The Governor further noted that the people of Illinois would contribute their “great skills and warm hearts” to achieving, in particular, the AKDN’s mission of early childhood education which he felt was critically important.
Mawlana Hazar Imam, in his remarks, indicated that the agreement between the State of Illinois and the Network “brings access to knowledge” to develop civil society — knowledge that is necessary for civil society to fulfil its role in sustaining human development, especially in the developing world and in cases where governments are fragile.
Minister Baird Greets His Highness the Aga Khan in Ottawa | Le ministre Baird accueille Son Altesse l’Aga Khan à Ottawa
November 4, 2011
Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird greets His Highness the Aga Khan, 49th hereditary imam of the Shia Imami Ismaili Muslims, at the headquarters of Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada in Ottawa. The meeting was part of ongoing consultations the government is conducting across the country and around the world on establishing its Office of Religious Freedom, one of the government’s key priorities. The commitment was included in the Speech from the Throne on June 3, 2011, and reiterated in Minister Baird’s speech to the United Nations General Assembly on September 26, 2011.
German ARTE TV to telecast the documentary “Karim Aga Khan IV and his Development Network” on Sunday 11 December 2011 at 4:30 pm
November 19, 2011 Leave a Comment
Film producer Veronika Hofer has accompanied His Highness for two years and have documented all-encompassing portrait of the Imam.
-Translated from German via Google.
The Aga Khan, leader of the Shiite Muslim religious community of Ismaili Muslims, is in Africa, Asia, the Middle East or even in Canada as a quiet and effective diplomat, as a bridge builder, but mainly known as a benefactor. His Aga Khan Development Network, which counts 80,000 employees worldwide, is the largest private development aid organization in the world. Filmmaker Veronika Hofer has accompanied him for two years and draws in their documentation a more sophisticated, all-encompassing portrait of the 75-year-olds.
Devonian to incorporate Islamic garden
By Brandi Morin
Posted 2 days ago
University of Alberta Devonian Gardens incorporating new and innovative attractions, is about to be put on the worldwide map. An Islamic garden, the first of its kind, is now in the design and planning stages. The garden was a multi-million-dollar gift from his Highness Aga Khan, the global leader of the Ismaili Muslim community. To date Khan has planted similar types of gardens, symbolizing peace and harmony all over the world.
Parkland County Div. 5 Coun. Denise Locher recently attended an information workshop in which organizers were seeking input regarding the gardens design.
In the session Locher learned that gardens are not associated with religion in Islam.
“Historically gardens were not religious places and it’s not integral to the mass design,” said Locher. “It would be like asking what is a democratic garden? I thought it was excellent, their concept is great. They’re looking to keep it non-religious, multi-cultural and as a safe place, for people to go and experience nature.”
She also learned that planners are leaning toward designing more of a natural type garden, because traditionally, Islamic gardens flourished naturally, free and wild such as a natural forest garden would.
There are other cultural gardens at Devonian such as the Japanese and First Nations gardens. The Islamic garden is a large project that encompasses nine acres of land with natural forest areas and a creek running through.
Carrie Mulholland, communications, Devonian Gardens, said when finished they expect the garden to attract visitors from around the world.
“We’re delighted it’s going forward,” said Mulholland.
“It’s an incredible addition taking the gardens to a whole new level. The garden is intended for everyone, for all people to enjoy.”
It is not yet known when the garden will be complete but Mulholland said they are aiming for a possible 2013 opening.
Two months ago GoldenRoom did a feature article on Tibet, describing the world’s other theocracy; unique amongst nations, Tibet is headed by a spiritual leader the Dalai Lama even though it is deprived of its actual territory. As was stated in that article, Tibet is not the world’s only theocracy and this month GoldenRoom features an even more remarkable community: the Ismaili community, headed by their ‘king’ and spiritual leader, the Aga Khan, yet never having a territory. The Ismaili dynasty itself is perhaps one of the most cross cultural in the world, and despite its lack of territory maintains an active and influential international role.
The history of the Ismaili Muslims is drawn from numerous nations, cultures and languages, but it begins with the origins of Islam. There are two main branches of Islam, Sunnism and Shiism which are traced to the dispute over the succession of the Prophet Muhammad. The Shia believe that Ali, the cousin and son- in- law of the Prophet Muhammad, was divinely appointed and selected by the Prophet Muhammad himself to be his successor to safeguard Islam, the Quran and the sharia. Shia believe that certain individuals among the Prophet Muhammad’s descendents, Imams, have special spiritual and political authority over the community. Shia believe in twelve divinely ordained leaders, known as the Twelve Imāms, and are thus sometimes known as the Twelvers. Approximately 85% of Shia are Twelvers and the term Shia commonly refers to this community.
Imam Alī was assassinated in 661 CE, and the Imāmate passed on to his son Hasan and then his son Husayn. Husayn whilst travelling to Kufa on a diplomatic mission was stopped by the army of the Syrian governor Yazid. In Karbala, during the month of Muharram Husayn and his extended family were starved, and ten days later, Husayn was killed, and the women and children in enslaved. This battle would become extremely important to the Shīa psyche.
The son of Alī ibn Ḥusayn and Fatimah bint al-Hasan, Muhammad al-Baqir is considered by the Shi'a to be the fifth Shia Imam. Muhammad’s son, by Fatima Al- Hasan, Jafar is considered the sixth Imam. Jafar married another Fatima Al-Hasan, a descendant of Hasan ibn Ali, and they had two sons: Isma'il ibn Jafar and Abdullah al-Aftah.
It is at this point in geneology where the Shia community split. The Twelvers accept the youngest son of Jafar, Musa al Kazim, by his second wife, Hamidah as the true Imam, the seventh. The Ismailis get their name from their acceptance of Ismail ibn Jafar as the appointed spiritual successor to the Imam Jafar al Sadiq
However Ismaili predeceased his father Jafar and the Ismailis went on to recognise his son Muḥammad ibn Ismāīl, as Imām. In contrast the Twelvers do not believe that Ismaili was ever designated as Imam, and that only Musa al Kazim was ever designated.
By the late ninth century under the Imam Ubayrd Allah al Mahdi Billah an army was raised and a Shia political states was established, originally based in Tunisia, is centre was later transferred to Egypt. In parallel with the dynasty's claim of descent from Alī and Fāṭimah, the empire was named “Fatimid.”
Under subsequent imams the Fatimid Empire quickly expanded. At its peak it included North Africa, Sicily, Palestine, Syria, the Red Sea coast, Yemen and Hejaz. A schism split Ismailism into two major branches, the Nizari and the Mustalian. The Nizari leaders succeeded in founding a cohesive state with numerous mountain strongholds and scattered territories stretching from eastern Persia to Syria. However the Nizari state collapsed only under the onslaught of all-conquering Mongols. Thereafter, the Ismailis never regained any political prominence and survived in many lands as a minor Shia Muslim sect.
By the second half of the eighteenth century, however, Ismaili imams came out of their obscurity and acquired political prominence. The 46th Imam, Aga Hassan Alī Shah, fled Iran in the 1840s after a failed coup against the Shah of the Qajar dynasty. Aga Hassan Alī Shah settled in Mumbai in 1848 where there was a largish community of Ismaili Muslims. The dynasty later acquired international prominence under their hereditary and honorific title of Agha Khan (Aga Khan) which was bestowed upon AgaHasan Ali Shah, Fat′h-Ali Shah Qajar the Shah of Persia. Etymologically the title combines the Turkish military title Agha, meaning a "noble" or "lord", with the Turko-Mongol title Khan for a local ruler, so the combination means roughly "Commanding Chief. In 1887, the British colonial rulers of India formally recognized the Aga Khan's rank and nobility.
The Ismaili accept today as their 49th Imam Prince Karim Aga Khan IV whom they claim is descended from Muḥammad through his daughter Fāṭimah az-Zahra and Ali, Muḥammad's cousin and son-in-law. The title “His Highness” was granted by Her Majesty the Queen of Great Britan in 1957. His Highness the Aga Khan became Imam of the Shia Imami Ismaili Muslims on July 11, 1957 at the age of 20, succeeding his grandfather, Sir Sultan Mahomed Shah Aga Khan.
In common with other Muslims sects Ismailis believe in the oneness of God, the divine revelations to Muḥammad as the final Prophet and Messenger of God to all humanity. As with other Shī‘ah, Ismāīlīs believe that the understanding of God is derived from the first light in the universe, the light of Aql, roughly translated as 'Intellect'. Through this Universal Intellect all living and non-living entities know God, and all of humanity is dependent and united in this light God. In Ismaili metaphysics, God is seen as above and beyond all conceptions, names, and descriptions; knowledge of God as such is above all human comprehension.
Ismailis share in the pillars of Islam, however The Shahadah (profession of faith), is not considered a Pillar but rather the foundation upon which they are built. The remaining pillars for the Ismaili are: Walayah meaning Guardianship denotes love and devotion to God: Tawhid meaning the "Oneness" of God: Salah or Prayer, however unlike Sunni and Twelver Muslims, Nizari Ismāʻīliyya currently pray three times a day; Zakah which is sometimes called Dasond or Charity refers to the proportion of personal income that Ismailis pay to their Imam. Most followers of the Aga Khan donate 12.5% of their personal income, of which 2.5% is directed to the poor, and the remaining 10% belongs directly to the Aga Khan: Sawm or Fasting has both a metaphorical and literal meaning, where the literal meaning would include abstaining from food such as during Ramadan, and the metaphorical meaning refers to avoiding activities that distract one from the goal of attaining Divine Truth: Hajj or Pilgrimage also has two meanings for Ismāīlīs. Visiting the imām or his representative is one of the most aspired pilgrimages, Hajj-i-Batini, but they share with other Muslims the importance of pilgrimage to Mecca, the Hajj-i-Zahiri: Jihad or Struggle is the final pillar, but as the Ismaili are pacifists this is interpreted as the struggle again personal and social vices.
The Ismāīlīs believe the Qur'an has several layers of meaning, but they generally divide those types of meanings into two: the apparent (zahir) meaning and the hidden (batin) meaning. While a believer can understand the batin meaning to some extent, the ultimate interpretation lies in the office of the Imāmate. The Imām is seen believed to be the “Face of God.” For this sect, the Imām is truth and reality itself, and hence he is their path of salvation to God. Oftentimes, the Imam of the Time is known as the "Qur'an e Naatiq" (the "speaking Qur'an"), meaning that he reinterprets the literary text in a way that can be understood for today's times. In this way, the Ismāīlī community can adapt to new times and new places. The Imām's teachings are binding upon the community. Some dispute whether he is seen as Divine and the only Mediator, or as analogous to the Pope.
The Ismaili have a pluralistic heritage, with pockets of communities all over the world. In recent years, Nizari Ismāʿīlīs, who have come to the US, Canada and Europe, many as refugees from Asia and Africa, have readily settled into the social, educational and economic fabric of urban and rural centres across the two continents. Today, the Ismailis live in some 25 countries, mainly in West and Central Asia, Africa and the Middle East, as well as in North America and Western Europe.
In view of the importance that Islām places on maintaining a balance between the spiritual well-being of the individual and the quality of his life, the Imām's guidance deals with both aspects of the life of his followers. Like its predecessors, the present constitution is founded on each Ismāʿīlī's spiritual allegiance to the Imām which is separate from the secular allegiance that all Ismāʿīlīs owe as citizens to their national entities. Ismailis owe allegiance to their country as a fundamental obligation, to to be discharged not by passive affirmation but through responsible engagement and active commitment to uphold national integrity and contribute to peaceful development.
The present Aga Khan continues the practice of his predecessor and extended constitutions to the global Ismaili community following a process of consultation within each constituency. In 1986, he promulgated a Constitution that brought the social governance of the world-wide Ismaili community into a single structure with built-in flexibility to account for diverse circumstances of different regions. The Constitution is served by volunteers and functions to promote group responsibility and communal well being.
The donations of the Ismailis are not only for Muslims, but contribute to the welfare of the humankind like education and health projects. One of the major examples of these projects is the Aga Khan Development Network, which is one of the biggest welfare networks of the world. For His Highness the Aga Khan, this has meant a deep engagement with development for over 50 years through the agencies of the AKDN. The Aga Khan Development Network is a group of institutions working to improve living conditions and opportunities in specific regions of the developing world. AKDN agencies conduct their programmes without regard to faith, origin or gender.
The Imams of the 20th and 21st centuries have overseen periods of intense social and political change. In the process they have become not just guardians of the Ismaili, but important and influential international figures, and often this has been reflected in their personal lives as well.
The Aga Khan III, was the son of the Aga Khan II and his third wife, Nawab A'lia Shamsul-Muluk, who was a granddaughter of Fath Ali Shah of Persia. He was also a highly sophisticated diplomat, who exercised a significant influence in international affairs, becoming President of the League of Nations. He second wife was Italian, Cleope Teresa Magliano and a dancer with the Ballet Opera of Monte Carlo. She did not convert to Islam, nor did his third wife, Andrée Joséphine Carron from France and co-owner of a Parisian boutique.
His fourth wife, by contrast, was a French tram conductor's daughter and was 29 years younger then him. He named her Mata Salamat though she was born, Yvonne Blanche Labrousse. Her conversion to Islam demonstrated her continuing support for the Aga Khan’s spiritual mission
The brother of the Aga Khan III Prince Sadruddin Aga Khan, was the United Nations’ High Commissioner for Refugees, United Nations’ Coordinator for assistance to Afghanistan and United Nations’ Executive Delegate of Iraq-Turkey border areas.
Prince Aly Khan, (1911–1960) married his first wife, Princess Tajuddawlah Aly Khan, formerly the Hon. Joan Barbara Yarde-Buller. Prince Aly Khān later married Rita Hayworth - with whom he had a daughter, Princess Yasmin Aga Khan. Prince Aly Khan, was Pakistan’s Ambassador to the United Nations.
His Highness the Aga Khan, is the 49th hereditary Imam of the Shia Ismaili Muslims. He was born Prince Karim Aga Khan on December 13, 1936, in Geneva. He spent his early childhood in Nairobi, Kenya, and then attended Le Rosey School in Switzerland. He graduated from Harvard University in 1959 with a BA Honors Degree in Islamic history. He skied for Iran n the 1964 Olympic Games.
He married Princess Salimah who was born, as Sarah Frances Croker-Poole in 1969. The Aga Khan married for the second time to Gabriele zu Leiningen, whose title was Princess Gabriele from her first marriage to Prince Karl Emich of Leiningen. The Princess assumed the name Begum Inaara Aga Khan and both Begums continued to work for the Aga Khan Development Network and other charitable causes.
The Aga Khan’s adult children are all closely involved with the work of the the Aga Khan Development Network.The Aga Khan’s brother, Prince Amyn, joined the United Nations Secretariat following in the family tradition of international service.
Over the years, the Aga Khan has received numerous decorations, honorary degrees, and awards in recognition of the various dimensions of his work. He has received civilian decorations on one or more occasions from the governments. As part of the commemoration of His Highness the Aga Khan’s Golden Jubilee which began on 11th July 2007, he has been paying official visits to some 35 countries, using these occasions to recognise the friendship and longstanding support of leaders of state, government and other partners in the work of the Ismaili Imamat. The dynasty and its active mission exemplifies the outstanding work across cultures that a monarchy is capable of, but this is all the more remarkable in light of the fact that this community and its leader, are without any territory at all.
ITBA special recognition award for the Aga Khan
By Bloodstock World Staff 8:06AM 27 MAY 2012
THE Aga Khan was on hand at the Curragh on Saturday to receive the ITBA Special Recognition Award at the ITBA Regional Awards for Kildare and Dublin, sponsored by Barrett Quigley Financial Limited.
The award - a plaque highlighting his Irish-bred Group 1 winners - was in recognition of the outstanding success enjoyed by the Aga Khan since he took control of his family's bloodstock in 1960. A number of champions have carried his famous green and red silks since then, among them Zarkava, Dalakhani, Shergar and Sinndar.
Excelebration: bred by John Tuthill's Owenstown Stud
PICTURE:Mark Cranham (racingpost.com/photos)
Harry Reilly, a well known figure at the sales, won the Award for Contribution to the Industry. Reilly has spent 50 years in the industry, working with the likes of George Weld, Christy Grassick and Jim Bolger, and is now an important member of the sales team at the Castlebridge Consignment.
The Small Breeder Award went to Des Leadon and Dr Mariann Klay of Swordlestown Little. Established in 2001 near Naas, the operation made its mark in 2011 as the breeder of high-class juvenile Lilbourne Lad.
The leading two-year-old award was received by the breeders of Dewhurst Stakes fourth Most Improved, Skymarc Farm Inc. and Ecurie des Monceaux, while the leading three-year-old award went to the Group 1-winning miler Excelebration, bred by John Tuthill's Owenstown Stud.
Hurricane Fly, bred by Paolo Caiani at Holyhill Stud, was named leading jumps horse.
17:10 30/06/2012ALL NEWS
Lavrov meets Prince Aga Khan IV in Geneva
TASS-TVGENEVA, June 30 (Itar-Tass) — Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov met with His Highness Prince Karim Aga Kham IV, global leader of the Ismaili Muslim community, in Geneva on Saturday.
“The meeting was held at the Russian permanent mission at the United Nations,” a Russian diplomat told Itar-Tass.
Aga Khan IV is founder and sponsor of many charitable projects, which are being carried out in many countries, including in Central Asian states. Under his leadership the Aga Khan Development Network operates. Several social, economic, educational and cultural institutions function under his auspices.
The Minister for Education and Vocational Training, Hon. Dr. Shukuru Kawambwa (MP), welcomes His Highness the Aga Khan, the Imam of the Nizari Ismaili Community, upon his arrival at the Julius Nyerere International Airport today in Dar es Salaam. Hon. Kawambwa went on behalf of Hon. Bernard K. Membe (MP), Minister for Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, who had previous engagement of a meeting in China. The Nizari Ismaili community is a denomination of Ismailism within Shia Islam and consists of approximately 5-15 million adherents (under 10% of the world's Shia Muslim population).
Hon. Dr. Kawambwa and His Highness the Aga Khan in light talks upon his arrival at the Julius Nyerere International Airport. Other on the photo is Mr. Amin Kurji (left) who is the Country Representative of the Aga Khan Development Network.
His Highness the Aga Khan exchanging few words with Hon. Dr. Kawambwa. High Highness the Aga Khan is on the official visit to Tanzania for two days from July 17 to 18, 2012.
Hon. Dr. Kawambwa welcomes again His Highness the Aga Khan before departing to His Highness the Aga Khan's residence located in Oysterbay, Dar es Salaam.
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