Ministry of Education and Higher Education held a cultural symposium entitled “Lunar Phases in the Treasures of Qatar’s Heritage” for the Ministry’s employees and school principals within Microsoft Teams Application. This is within the framework of the Ministry of Education and Higher Education’s participation in its various activities and programs that fall within the celebration of Doha, Capital of Culture in the Islamic World 2021 under the slogan “Our Culture is Light” under the supervision of Ministry of Culture and Sports and Qatar National Committee for Education, Culture and Science and in cooperation with a number of strategic partners from State agencies and Institutions.
The symposium aims at introducing forensic astronomy in the Qatari heritage and then pioneers of this science from the distinguished Qataris in this field including Sheikh Hamed Bin Ahmad Al-Marwani, may God have mercy on him (1865-1940). He was one of the first Qatari Scientists who were interested in studying this science and the scientific study of this manuscript and referring to the main role of lunar phases in determining seasons of the year, weather fluctuations, wind conditions, rain, heat and cold.
This cultural symposium was presented by Mr. Mohammad Fouad Haseeb, an educational supervisor at the department of Science in the Department of Educational Supervision at the Ministry. Through his presentation, the lecturer highlighted efforts of Sheikh Hamed Al-Marwani as pioneer in the field of education and culture and how his students benefited from him including the first Qatari School headmistress Ms. Amna Al-Jaidah.
In addition, books and manuscripts of Sheikh Al-Marwani were reviewed including one of his manuscripts related to clarifying lunar phases in which he used teaching aids through simple composition and drawing to clarify information and focus on his creativity by linking his explanation to the newly captured images of those stars and the extent of accuracy in his description to them.
In the presentation, a link was made between the resources of sciences that are taught in the Qatari curricula as well as extra-curricular activities applied in the Science Department of the Ministry through “Globe” program for environmental culture that aims at taking care of the environment and spreading cultural awareness of importance of following up various astronomical phenomena and their connection to people’s lives in a simplified way through what the Sheikh presented in his system about “lunar phases” and how to employ Islamic culture in fields of modern science and education?.
The symposium also hosted Engineer Hassan Al-Marwani, the grandson of the Sheikh, to talk about the biography of Sheikh Al-Marwani and his most important works and students.
Importance of this cultural symposium is represented in discussing “a rare Qatari manuscript of Sheikh Hamed Al-Marwani” which provides a detailed explanation of the lunar phases and order of stars with illustrations for each phase separately for a number of stars and their order as a cultural activity the Ministry participates in to spread environmental culture to ensure sustainability and quality of the environment for current and future generations.
It is noteworthy that this cultural symposium is held within several programs and activities organized by Ministry of Education and Higher Education throughout 2021 as a strategic partner in the celebration of “Doha, Capital of Culture in the Islamic World”.