Ahmadinejad’s speech at the Inaugural ceremony
In the name of God, the compassionate, the merciful
You all love Imam Reza. For a moment take your mind off to the Imam’s shrine and visualize what is going on there. The Imam’s followers from all around the world are amorously and passionately talking to him, each in a different language and with a particular attitude. One is conveying his feelings; the other is presenting his demands, ranging from minor to global and international ones. See what’s going on there!
Let’s go outside the shrine. There are numerous people adoringly talking to the Imam in the holy city of Mashhad. Let’s go out of Mashhad. Millions of people are talking to the Imam. Let’s go out of Iran and see how many people are talking to the Imam now. They all believe that the Imam will listen to them and answer them accordingly.
Whoever talks to the Imam feels calmness, joy and spiritual uplift. If we could talk to other creatures, though I am deprived of such a gift, and look beyond the curtains of the world, we could see that the tiniest particles of the world were in contact with the Imam, especially tonight, the anniversary of his birthday. If the curtains are raised, you’ll see that all creatures are celebrating this occasion.
What does it mean that the Imam answers all the callers? What does it remind us of? Isn’t it another manifestation of God the Almighty? Look at yourself, when two people talk to you at the same time you will miss one due to the nervous pressure. But, God is the absolute perfection and the Imam is His nicest endowment to mankind. He is the infinite mercy of God. He is the connecting joint of the cosmos with God the Almighty, the intermediary of heavenly grace. There is no way to know him except through himself, and there is no way to approach God except through the Imam. God plans to introduce Himself out of mercy. And if it wasn’t for the sake of the Imam, we could never know God or even contact with Him appropriately. God sent the Imam out of grace and mercy so that human beings along with other creatures could access him, establish contact with him and benefit from his existence. Imam Reza has been illuminating in the east of the world for centuries. Hundreds of millions of followers have been constantly in contact with him.
The gravest mission of man and his longest step toward perfection and a prerequisite to other steps, is to recognize the Imam. How similar is Imam Reza to Imam Zaman (Imam of the Era)! We are thankful to God that this festival, with the purpose of recognizing and propagating the Imamate and Leadership of the Imam, has provided an apt opportunity for the blooming of loving bosoms of faith and velayat. It is an excellent opportunity for all artists, craftsmen, scholars, literati and intellectuals to plunge into an infinite ocean and introduce infinite beauties of the Imam to others.
Let me express my gratitude to all involved in the planning of the festival, the designers, the participants; all who participated in different parts of the festival, including making songs, making theatres and movies, making designs, drawing and writing letters to Imam Reza. I appreciate Mr. Safar Harandi’s efforts for developing this festival. I ask Dr. Hosseini to keep the same momentum in spreading the scope of this festival. I think we can reach the point when our entire year is imbued with the name and memory of the Imam. This festival is not confined to any particular group or locality, or to any specific literary circle. All must get involved; journalists, authors, directors, painters, musicians and poets should work in the name of Imam and for the revival of his memory and it is possible.
I ask you humbly to make plans. The cabinet and the parliament will support you with great honor. Razavi culture is the manifestation of Alavi culture; it is the manifestation of the culture of the Prophet and a preamble to Mahdavi (messianic) culture. It is what man needs today. Let’s join hands to satisfy this essential need of mankind.
God bless you and His mercy and endowments be upon you.