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Condolences on the passing of Professor Ataullah Siddiqui

Innā lillāhi wa innā ilayhi rājiʿūn. Indeed, to Allāh we belong, and to Him we are returning.

It is with deep sadness that we inform our readers that Professor Ataullah Siddiqui has passed away to meet his Lord (subḥānahu wa taʿālā) after losing his battle with cancer. May Allāh have mercy upon him.

Allāh (subḥānahu wa taʿālā) declares:

“Wherever you are, death will overtake you, even if you are in lofty towers.” [1]

“Everyone shall taste death, and only on the Day of Resurrection shall you be paid your wages in full. Whoever is removed away from the Fire and admitted to Paradise, he is indeed successful. The life of this world is only the enjoyment of deception.” [2]

Ataullah Siddiqui was a leading figure in multi-faith dialogue, a Professor of Christian-Muslim relations, and a world authority as an academic critic of the field. He established the Markfield Institute of Education, of which he was also Director from 2001 to 2008.[3]

After earning his BA and PhD from the University of Birmingham, Prof Siddiqui was a founder, President, and Vice Chair of the Christian Muslim Forum in England, as well as a founding member of the Leicester Council of Faiths.[4]

Prof Siddiqui was a visiting professor at the University of Gloucestershire and a visiting fellow at York St. John’s University.

Throughout his academic career, Prof Siddiqui supervised many PhDs, and his books were taught in many universities. He was the author of the 2007 report commissioned by the UK government entitled Islam at Universities in England: Meeting the Needs and Investing in the Future, the third of its kind to be tabled in Parliament.[5]

One of his students marvelled at Prof Siddiqui’s remarkable life, saying “the list is too long to praise him” but recalled his “outstanding humility” and love for the Prophet Muhammad (sall Allāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam), noting how Prof Siddiqui would read the Sīrah of the Prophet and ponder over it every day.

At the Markfield Institute, Prof Siddiqui was the course director of the Certificate in Muslim Chaplaincy, further developing the concept and career pathway for many Muslims in chaplaincy.

The Islam21c team would like to extend their sincerest condolences to the family of Professor Ataullah Siddiqui and the entire Ummah. His role and efforts are well-known and we trust that it will be his legacy and among his many good deeds that will stand for him after his death inshāAllāh.

Some of his inspiring quotes shared by his students can be found below:

“I am not afraid to move onto the next life and I am prepared to meet my Lord. Live your life with ambition; nothing will overcome your motive.”

“I hope that I have left a spiritual legacy for you all. Always ask yourself: what spiritual legacy will I leave behind?”

“The power of the pen must not be underestimated. If you have a thought and it causes you to ponder, then just write it down. You will not regret it.”

“Keep on writing. Be critical but respectful. Do not feel empowered by the knowledge you hold but the value of wisdom through its dissemination.”[6]

Many of his colleagues and students have been paying their respects.

Principal of Markfield Institute of Higher Education, Dr Zahid Parvez wrote:

“He has been working at the Islamic Foundation and then the Markfield Institute for almost 40 years. He made great contributions to both of these organisations. He has many students in the UK and overseas. Everyone knew him as a good scholar and teacher and who worked tirelessly to support students in their studies. He will be greatly missed.”

We beseech Allāh (subḥānahu wa taʿālā) to expand Prof Siddiqui’s grave, shower His infinite mercy upon him, forgive his sins, and grant his family patience. We ask Allāh (subḥānahu wa taʿālā) to make this difficult time an expiation of sins and the raising of his rank in the sight of our Lord.

Source: www.islam21c.com

Notes:

[1] Al-Qur’ān, 4:78

[2] Al-Qur’ān, 3:185

[3] https://berkleycenter.georgetown.edu/people/ataullah-siddiqui

[4] https://mihe.ac.uk/academic-staff/professor-ataullah-siddiqui

[5] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ataullah_Siddiqui

[6] https://twitter.com/Usama_Z/status/1325741862993469440

The views expressed on Islam21c and its connected channels do not necessarily represent the views of the organisation.

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