The holy scriptures of the Quran, Torah, and Bible prominently feature numerous prophets who have left a lasting impact on humanity. These esteemed individuals are not only known for their divine revelations but also for their various roles as effective communicators, community organizers, and liberators of oppressed communities. Thus, I ask the question, is there a need for modern day prophets? Prophets from these three religious texts have demonstrated their abilities to communicate effectively, galvanize communities, and work towards the liberation of the oppressed. Through their words, actions, and divine guidance, these prophets have left an indelible mark on history.
Datu Mussolini Sinsuat Lidasan, JD is the founding director of the Al Qalam Institute of Islamic Identities and Dialogue in Southeast Asia based at Ateneo de Davao University. He was Commissioner of the Expanded Bangsamoro Transition Commission (BTC) that drafted the Bangsamoro Basic Law which eventually became the Bangsamoro Organic Law. He was also a pioneer Member of Parliament of the Bangsamoro Transition Authority from 2019 to 2022.
On November 24, 2023, the Third Party Monitoring Team (TPMT), the body tasked to monitor, review and assess the implementation of all signed agreements between the Government of the Philippines (GPH) and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), invited our office to attend in the gathering of peace process stakeholders and civil society organizations to hear our views and concerns about the current status of the GPH-MILF peace process. It was also the time they presented their 8th Public Report.
The need for modern-day prophets is a subjective topic that varies among individuals based on their beliefs and religious practices. Some people view prophets as crucial for receiving guidance, spiritual knowledge, and divine messages. These individuals believe that prophets serve as a conduit for higher powers and offer direction in navigating life's difficulties. On the other hand, some argue that the existence of religious texts, moral teachings, and established traditions may render modern-day prophets unnecessary. Therefore, the necessity of prophets is a personal belief that differs from person to person.
For several decades, Mindanao and the Bangsamoro region were plagued by a complex problem: cycle of violence and poverty. Recent studies have shown that the old paradigm and orthodox view stemmed from deep-seated tensions between different ethnic, religious, and cultural groups within the region.
The United Bangsamoro Justice Party (UBJP) holds great potential as a political force in the Bangsamoro region. As we delve into the last part of the four series of essays exploring the party, our aim is to present a comprehensive view that not only highlights its strengths but also provides constructive criticism to facilitate its growth and transformation into an inclusive and democratic entity. The four-part series aims to lay the groundwork for constructive criticism, focusing on enhancing inclusivity, democratic processes, and adhering to the principles of inclusive Islamic leadership.
The issue of war and peace in Muslim Mindanao has a complex and intricate history, marked by political, social, and economic challenges, often accompanied by violence and conflict. Understanding the current state of the United Bangsamoro Justice Party (UBJP) requires a deep dive into the socio-political landscape of Mindanao, specifically the Bangsamoro region.
The first part of this series briefly discussed the different factions within the United Bangsamoro Justice Party (UBJP). For this second part, we can briefly discuss the socio-political climate of the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM). The current Barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan Elections mirrored how disunited UBJP was at the ground level.
Political parties play an essential role in democratic governance by offering various platforms, representing diverse interests, and allowing citizens to participate in the political process. In the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM), political parties can foster competition, encourage accountability, and provide a means for different voices and perspectives to be heard and represented.
Studies have shown that nothing has changed in Bangsamoro in terms of poverty alleviation, and addressing hunger. Meanwhile, low literacy rate has happened in more than two decades of intervention of different local and foreign development agencies.
The concept of peace, a universal desire among humanity, is often understood in different ways across various cultures. While some perceive peace as the absence of violence and conflict, others view it as a state of harmony and balance in society.
The "Human Fraternity for World Peace and Living Together" declaration, written by Pope Francis and the Grand Imam of Al-Azhar, Ahmed Al-Tayeb, promotes compassion and solidarity. It calls on religious and political leaders to end wars, conflicts, and environmental harm.
Israel has declared war on Gaza in response to an attack by Hamas involving thousands of rockets. Israel has implemented a comprehensive siege on Gaza, imposing restrictions on essentials such as electricity, water, food, and fuel. This has been criticized by international organizations, including the United Nations, as collective punishment and a breach of international law. The conflict has led to the displacement of about 200,000 residents of Gaza, with the number expected to increase. The death toll in Gaza has surpassed 1,300, with over 2,500 injured. There are also 14 Americans believed to be held hostage by Hamas. Retaliatory bombings by Israel have resulted in the deaths of nearly 1,800 people in Gaza, including almost 600 children, as of writing.