Shah Alam, Malaysia : Islamic arts help draw Muslims closer to the Quran as they instill the love of Islam, said Information Communication and Culture Minister Datuk Seri Dr Rais Yatim.
He said as the Quran vitalised Islamic arts development, thus it could not be separated from Islamic arts.
“As Islamic calligraphy is one of art treasures directly associated to the Quran, interest in calligraphy could take Muslims closer to the treasures of the Quran,” he said at the opening of the Quran and Islamic Arts Festival organised by Restu Foundation at Selangor Islamic Arts Park Complex on Sunday.
His text of speech was read by ministry’s secretary-general Wira Kamaruddin Siaraf.
Rais said Muslims should always refer to the Quran and the Prophet leadership for guidance to enable them to make correct judgments including in pursuing arts.
“By delving in Islamic arts, it is hoped that this will instill the love of Islam. Allah is most beautiful and loves beauty.
“I see Islamic arts is a medium suitable to create interests and motivate Muslims. The message delivered will be easier to comprehend and indirectly reduce the pressure of daily life,” he said.
In a broader context, he said arts were not only associated with entertainment, literary and music but also in the pursuit of knowledge.
Rais said since the golden age of Islam from the Prophet Muhammad era until the Ottoman empire, arts had become an important part of civilization building that witnessed Islamic arts eminent figures assisting Islamic governments then.
“The important role of arts at that time hinged on Islamic arts characteristics themselves not only as a form of entertainment but also did not elude from remembrance of Allah and culminated in building up stronger ummah spiritual and intellectually,” he said.
He said Islam did not forbid its followers from getting involve in arts but their involvement should be in accordance with Islamic teachings, including prohibiting entertainment that would lead to laxity and free-mixing of men and women.
Rais hoped the 12-day festival, which started on Friday, would be an annual affairs that would help produce a new generation of knowledgeable, creative thinking and resourceful Islamic society which could contribute to the advancement of race, religion and nationhood.