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The Embassy of the Republic of Kazakhstan marked the 1150th anniversary of the birth of legendary Islamic philosopher Al-Farabi with the commemoration of a memorial plaque in the coastal city of Haifa on Tuesday morning. A renowned scholar who lived during a period of intellectual flourishing when the Islamic world led the world in scientific and scholastic activity, Abu Nasr Al-Farabi became one of the most influential philosophers. A prolific thinker and writer who covered philosophy, metaphysics, cosmology, logic, music and other topics, Al-Farabi played a key role in translating and transmitting Aristotelianism and neo-Platonism to subsequent generations of teachers and students. Al-Farabi’s influence extended to thinkers of all religious persuasions, including the Muslim scholar Ibn Sina (Avicenna) and the Jewish medieval sage Maimonides, both whom drew heavily upon Al-Farabi’s ideas in their own philosophical works.



H.E. Ambassador Satybaldy Burshakov, the Ambassador of Kazakhstan to Israel, opened his remarks by thanking the municipality of Haifa, as well as Honorary Consul of Kazakhstan in Israel, Mr. David Luxembourg, for their cooperation in honoring Al-Farabi. The ambassador also thanked the Rector of Al-Farabi Kazakh National University Galimkair Mutanov and President of the Turkic Academy Darkhan Kydyrali. Ambassador Burshakov mentioned that the commemoration of Al-Farabi was an international occasion under the auspices of UNESCO, in light of Al-Farabi’s great influence on humanity.  

The ambassador highlighted some of Al-Farabi’s prescient ideas, such as an early version of disaster risk reduction and the potential in nations helping one another. In light of that, the ambassador praised the cooperation between Israel and Kazakhstan, and in particular the medical cooperation during the Covid 19 period. 

The memorial plaque to Al-Farabi was dedicated on a Haifa street that had already been named for Al-Farabi previously, and Ambassador Burshakov noted that this showed the great esteem in which the scholar was held by so many cultures.

President of the Turkic Academy Mr. Darkhan Kydyrali had prepared remarks to be shown at the ceremony. Mr. Kydyrali explained that Al-Farabi was known as the “Second Teacher”, after Aristotle, the “First Teacher,” a great sign of respect. He noted that Al-Farabi’s work ranged widely from theological issues to social philosophy, with his influence extending far beyond his own time and locale, to the eventual intellectual development of the European scholastic community as well. Mr. Kydyrali finished by thanking the mayor and municipality of Haifa, as well as Ambassador Burshakov and Honorary Consul Mr. Luxembourg for arranging this important event. Following the speeches, Ambassador Burshakov unveiled the plaque, which will now serve as a memorial and to educate all the passersby who walk down Al-Farabi street in Haifa.

 Among the guests were also Lazar Kaplun - Deputy Mayor of Haifa City, Gary Koren member of the Haifa City Council - Chairman of the Immigration and Absorpcion Committee , Mrs. Nataya Divinsky President of the International Organization of Jews from Kazakhstan & Central Asia and Mrs Tjireya Tjitendero from the Bahá'í World Center .

Diplomacy.co.il congratulates the Embassy of the Republic of Kazakhstan, Haifa Municipality and the Honorary Consul of Kazakhstan in Israel on this important initiative to promote cultural and intellectual historical awareness.

Photos Silvia Golan