27th Nationwide Prayer Conference
The 27th conference on daily ritual prayer was recently held with the message of Ayatollah Khamenei at Semnan University with nearly 1000 attendees.
Daily ritual prayer is the loftiest form of servitude and humbleness before God. Performance of this obligatory worship is the symbol of human quest for perfection and love of God. Those who perform ritual prayer in fact abandon their egotism and haughtiness. As haughtiness and arrogance grow in the individual he will rebel against God and will not attach importance to other human beings. Marcel André Boisard, Swiss diplomat and thinker, says, "Prayer is the constant remembrance of God's Oneness and Greatness; and is the tool for entering the party of God. This permanent change of state causes man not to be plunged in the affairs of material life."
With respect to the importance of spread of the culture of prayer and bolstering its foundation in the Islamic society, since 1991, the nationwide prayer conference has been held every year. This national event aims at cementing and deepening of beliefs and values of daily ritual prayer. This is done to promote the status of this act of worship among people and make officials more sensitive toward it. This will ultimately lead to a dynamic and vivid society which is religious and safeguards religious values. The initiator of this move has been the Leader of the Islamic Revolution, Ayatollah Khamenei who sends enlightening messages to the annual confab to show the officials the roadmap toward having a spiritual society. The call to prayer is indeed the invitation to the most beautiful manifestations of life; because prayer is a chapter in life in which the weak human being is in a lovely communion with the Almighty Creator. The ample volume of recommendations by the Prophet of Islam and his infallible successors about daily prayer indicates the matchless status of this obligatory worship. On Wednesday, December 5, 2018, the 27th prayer conference started with the message of Ayatollah Khamenei. The theme of this year's confab was "Methods and Skills of Inviting to Prayer".
The Leader of the Islamic Revolution, describing the annual confab, stated in his message, "The annual prayer conference is on one hand the sign of appreciation before an obligation which can breathe spirit into all other worships and obligations and make them effective. 'If it is accepted every other act will be accepted.' On the other hand, it is a great service to those who do not know the right of this divine gift and take little heed of it. If prayer is performed with humbleness and wholehearted attention, it will lead the society toward righteousness and rectitude in word and deed and will enhance the society. An important part of our troubles and pollutions stems from negligence of this warning reality. Thus, promotion of prayer with every effective method is among great duties which everybody should assist to it and you, the officials of this conference, especially the combatant cleric Hojjat ul-Islam Qara'ati, have, thank God, had this divine help. The ministry of education can be the most effective in this respect. Adorn schools with prayers of teenagers as this is the guarantee for the health of society in future."
Hojjat ul-Islam Mohsen Qara'ati, head of Prayer Maintenance Headquarters, said as the first speaker of the confab, "The importance of ritual prayer is so high that the managers of organizations should themselves take the responsibility of maintaining it and providing its facilities. We should ask everything from prayer. Thus, if ritual prayer is revived, definitely our problems will decrease."
The noble Qur'an stresses that it is only in the remembrance of God that hearts find rest. The most beautiful and complete form of rest and calm is found in daily ritual prayer. Ayah 45 of surah Ankabout says, "Indeed the prayer prevents indecencies and wrongs."
Imam Sadeq (AS) narrates that whenever Imam Ali (AS) faced a great problem, he would perform a two-rak'at prayer seeking God's help. Those who perform daily ritual prayer are indeed enjoying a climate of solace and happiness. They will never lose hope as they are in communion with the ultimate source of hope. Daily ritual prayer is the greatest and most important worship in Islam. If this worship is performed properly it has countless effects on the individual and the society. In ayah 19 of surah Ahqaaf, God says on the rewards of those who maintain prayer, "For each person there will be degrees pertaining to what he has done, that He may recompense them fully for their works, and they will not be wronged."