Dr. Yusuf Al-Qaradawi, president of the International Union of Muslim Scholars, has been chosen for the second consecutive year as the Scholar of the Year in an oline campaign conducted by OnIslam.net.
The Islamic site launched the campaign as a token of appreciation to scholars and Muslims preachers, who did great efforts in 2012 to spread Islamic knowledge, promote Islamic values and morals as well as to mobilize Muslim’s youth efforts, OnIslam reported.
The campaign started by inviting users to make nominations from among scholars and preachers whom they trust in terms of knowledge and stances and who connect well with the youth. The organizers received a list of scholars, of whom they selected the top 5 figures, namely Dr. Jamal Badawi, Noaman Ali Khan, Dr. Salman Al-Oudah, Sheikh Yasir Qadhi and Dr. Yusuf Al-Qaradawi. In the second stage, users were asked to vote for one of the 5 scholars. More than 900 participated in the poll and Dr. Al-Qaradawi came first followed by Noaman Ali Khan and in the third place was Sh. Yasir Qadhi.
Winning 39.9 percent of votes, Dr. Al-Qaradawi, is chosen for the second consecutive year as the Scholar of the Year by OnIslam visitors. The selection reflects the great impact of Dr. Al-Qaradawi in the fields of Islamic scholarship and dawa and the high esteem he is held in. Despite his old age, Al-Qaradawi, 86, is remarkably known for his active involvement in the events touching the Muslim Ummah, whether in person or through the organizations he heads, such as the International Union for Muslim Scholars (IUMS). That goes in line with his deep belief in Islam as a comprehensive way of life and his conviction that the role of scholar is far greater than retreating to a mosque and teaching people about the devotional rituals of Islam.
The atrocities committed by the Syrian dictator, Bashar Al-Asad, and the massacres of Muslims in Myanmar, along with the challenges facing the Egyptian revolution were among the major events in 2012 that had much of Dr. Al-Qaradawi’s concern and effort. Besides, in the scholarship arena, Dr. Al-Qaradawi continues to add to his list of books, that has exceeded 170. He is working now on a new, more elaborate edition of his famous book Al-Halal wal-Haram fil Islam (The Lawful and the Prohibited in Islam).
Second to Al-Qaradawi, Sheikh Noaman Ali Khan received 31.9 votes. Interestingly, Sheikh Khan represents a different facet of dawa; he is young, located in the USA; he speaks English very well and his speeches and talks have a sense of humor that makes it easy to connect with listeners, specially the youth. Sheikh Khan is the founder of Bayinah, an academic Institute that has a unique mission. Bayyinah’s mission is making the appreciation of Islam’s sacred texts accessible to the world throughout providing education and resources in two areas; (i) Arabic studies and (ii) linguistic and literary analysis of sacred Islamic texts.
Currently Sheikh Noaman Ali Kahn has dedicated himself to a seven-year-long project, of conducting a linguistic and literary focus Qur’anic Tafseer series in English. Such projects are very important since connecting to Arabic, especially the unique language and style of the Qur'an, continues to be a challenge that faces new Muslim generations in the West.
Winning 12.7 percent of the votes, Sheikh Yasir Qadhi comes in the third position. Like Noaman Ali Khan, Sheikh Yasir Qadhi is a US-based scholar who works to disseminate Islamic knowledge in a way that is attractive and appealing to Western Muslims. The academic background of Sheikh Qadhi is interesting: He graduated with a B.Sc. in Chemical Engineering from the University of Houston, after which he was accepted as a student at the Islamic University of Madinah. After completing a diploma in Arabic, he graduated with a B.A. from the College of Hadith and Islamic Sciences. Thereafter, he completed a M.A. in Islamic Theology from the College of Dawah. He is currently pursuing his doctorate, in Religious Studies, at Yale University. Sheikh Yasir Qadi works as the Dean of Academic Affairs at AlMaghrib Institute which aims at fulfilling the Muslim community's need for Islamic knowledge and spiritual uplifting in an attractive manner.