Honorable dignitaries and my dear friends. I express my heartfelt thanks for blessing this occasion with your kind presence. For being here as this dream comes true. Honestly, I am out of much words to say, because it is very difficult to define, describe, elucidate what one feels when their wish comes true. When it happens, we are transformed into another world, and right now, this dreamer is in such a state. I’m grateful to the organizers, especially the Kerala Muslim Cultural Centre and Sharjah International Book Fair Authority. I’m a son of Sharjah, studied in a Indian school here, and I am extremely happy that this book, which is most precious part of my life, is launched in this beautiful emirate. I can’t call it simply a book, since, a book is something on mere paper and pages; this is my life.
I’m all the more electrified that this book launch also is at the hands of that sagacious leader’s beloved son – Sayyid Munavvar Ali Shihab.
What can I say, it would be very demeaning to call Sayyid Muhammad Ali Shihab just a person. You see that SIBF quote up there ‘a world in my book’. For me, Sayyid Shihab was my world.
The production of this book has undergone tremendous pain and joy. I had earlier thought of giving you a well-prepared speech, but, friends, when joy, pride… when the torrent of emotions join hands together, it’s extremely difficult to organize your words.
Friends, this book is the book of aphorisms and quotations. You will not find more than two sentences in a page. As most of you know Sayyid Shihab spoke very, very, very little. Hence, this book is a tribute to his personality and miserly worded speeches. The text was very difficult to condense because when you love somebody you want to write a lot, as any writer would want. I had to do justice to this form of presentation, to respect the sagacity, the mildness, brevity of Sayyid Shihab’s words. He spoke very little, but whatever he spoke were priceless pearls.
This collection contains 100 quotations of Sayyid Shihab, divided into five categories, namely, Philosophy, Philanthropy, Pluralism, Politics and Personality. I named them with ‘P’ based on the name of his village, Panakkad.
I hope you will welcome this book with open arms.
(Highlights from Mujeeb Jaihoon’s speech at launching ceremony of Slogans of the Sage, Nov 2 2017, Sharjah International Book Fair)