The Director of the Library and House of Manuscripts of the Al-Abbas's (p) Holy Shrine Sayed Nuruddeen Al-Moosawi, explained that during the past five years the Library had bought and collected nearly five thousand written copies classified as precious, rare and of heritage, that came during the speech that he delivered on behalf of General Secretariat of the Al-Abbas's (p) Holy Shrine, during the opening ceremony of the First Conference of safeguarding and reviving the written heritage, hosted by the Library and House of Manuscripts at Al-Abbas's (p) Holy Shrine.
And which started on Friday morning 16 Rajab 1435 AH corresponding to 16 May 2014, under the theme: (Keep your books, you will need them). The following is the text of the speech:
“Distinguished professors, Dear brothers and sisters, Peace, Mercy and Allah's Blessing be upon you..
When God, The Maker of order graced the human with the Reason, He guided him by the light of Science to seek the truth in order to receive the honour of the knowledge-ability on earth, making then the Science the fuel and tool of the Reason.
Thus the Reason needs to benefit from Science, which needed Scholars and students to keep the torch of knowledge enlightening the darkness of ignorance.
Therefore Allah The Creator has chosen from his slaves, the best of bests, the elite, Mohammad and his holy household (Peace and Allah's Mercy be upon them all), whom Quran describe in different verses with: "those of understanding" , "Best of creatures", "people of the message", "allies of Allah", "those in authority" and other expressions implicitly or explicitly meaning them (peace be upon them).
The Imam Jaafar As-Sadeq (peace be upon him) the trustworthy heir of his fathers' sciences, explicitly said: "Keep your books, you will need them" a word of witness that inspired us to adopt it as a theme for our first conference of safeguarding and reviving the written heritage.
Since the founding of the house of manuscripts, we held faith in our library to research, collect and gather whatever is in relationship with the written heritage, such as books, letters, poem collections and old sources for the purpose of maintaining, preserving and giving it the right care and attention. As for the importance that represents the intellectual heritage for the nations' development in the future. We have made the action plan for the implementation of this project within three axes:
The first axis : to collect the manuscript; as we have not set one kind of scripts, but the goal was to safeguard and collect what can be collected from those scattered, damaged, stolen treasures, or those smuggled out of the country because of successive wars, instability or economic and cultural reasons, and perhaps the last factor explains the status of ignorance of their value, importance and scarcity leading to their damage, another example is what happened during the uprising of Sha'ban in 1411 / 1991, when the soldiers and members of the Baathists made tea in the courtyard of Al-Abbas (peace be upon him) on the fire made out from burnt rare books and manuscripts, therefore this experience made us put in the priorities of our work to collect what can be collected and we have hired for this work experts well-known by their skills in this art , which helped us during the last five years to buy and collect nearly five thousand copies of the written heritage classified as rare and precious .
The second axis: The treatment, maintenance and safeguard of the manuscript within the proper conditions. For this purpose the house of manuscripts sent to known European countries in this area its competent affiliates in order to make their training and get recognized specialization diplomas. The House also bought a private "hospital" to address and treat manuscripts according to the latest known technologies, and its affiliates are today the leading specialists in this regard in our country, which allow them to maintain a number of known libraries in different provinces of Iraq.
The last axis included the picturization, classification, the indexing of the manuscript and the historical, scientific and author identification in order to configure it, to facilitate its delivery and to make it accessible to the hands of researchers and investigators.
Yet our staff at the centre of the heritage has in few years, achieved and accomplished important and vital projects, making the library and house of manuscripts of the holy shrine a prominent name among the houses of manuscripts in Iraq, Arab and Islamic countries, where it earned a number of awards and certificates, most recently the one of the exemplar publisher, as well as its winning book ("Kashf al-astaar 'an wajhi Al-Gha'eb 'ani Al-Absaar" revealing veils from the face of the absent from sight) of his writer the scholar An-Nouri for the exemplar book revision within the competition of the annual exhibition of Sal Hawza in the holy city of Qom, which includes publications of Hawzas of Iraq, Iran, India, Pakistan and Lebanon.
In conclusion, we would like to show you the outcome of this work which is the deposit of nearly five thousand manuscripts in the closet of the Al-Abbas's (p) holy shrine, considered as jewels of the human intellectual literature heritage, in addition to nearly 150.000 pictured manuscripts with the latest technology in accordance with the treaties and agreements on joint cooperation for cultural exchange with the most prominent libraries and houses of the manuscripts, as well as the publication of twenty-five revised books, and two volumes of our manuscripts index, and we are still continuing the work to complete the rest of the volumes.
Praise to the Almighty first and foremost for this cultural achievement, then we present our thanks and gratitude for whoever helped, encouraged and supported us. And eventually all the thanks is to all of you here for accepting the invitation, praying that we could all participate in the success of the service of the culture and human thought in our beloved country.
Peace be upon you.”