The launch ceremony of the online edition of the CGIE encyclopaedias was held on Tuesday, 22 September 2020, and Kazem Mousavi Bojnourdi, Ashraf Boroujerdi, Ali Bahramian, Mohammad Mehdi Mahmoudi, Ali Mousavi Bojnourdi, and Masoud Tarah delivered their speeches at the event, which was hosted by Hamoun Ghorab in the Centre for the Great Islamic Encyclopaedia.
CGIE: The launch ceremony of the online edition of the CGIE encyclopaedias was held on Tuesday, 22 September 2020, and Kazem Mousavi Bojnourdi, Ashraf Boroujerdi, Ali Bahramian, Mohammad Mehdi Mahmoudi, Ali Mousavi Bojnourdi, and Masoud Tarah delivered their speeches at the event, which was hosted by Hamoun Ghorab in the Centre for the Great Islamic Encyclopaedia.
The session opened with the speech of Kazem Mousavi Bojnourdi, the head of the centre, who noted: “Mentioning the benefits and influences of the online edition of our encyclopaedias will take time. Briefly, we, as encyclopaedists, explore accurately all the cultural aspects of the nation in the form of extensive entries of the encyclopaedias. We scrutinize every key concept that has emerged throughout the history of this nation, express its origins, and recount it in the specific context in which it was developed. Therefore, we, the encyclopaedists, in a sense, are the preservers of the national culture, and concurrently, we enrich the national culture as well.”
He added: “In the online format, all our encyclopaedias are available to the researchers, and this can play a prominent role in the diffusion of our culture and its fertility. Another advantage of the online encyclopaedias is that all the entries (even the ones which have been published formerly in the Encyclopaedia Islamica) can be accessible as soon as they are adequately prepared to be published.”
He reminded: “All the compiled entries are based on authoritative sources and if we want to publish them in the alphabetical paper format it may take a long time. But the online format keeps us updated in promptly publishing the most recent entries. Although we maintain the paper format in the alphabetical order, in the online version, we publish all the entries as soon as they are compiled and edited, and make them accessible for the researchers.”
Mousavi Bojnourdi concluded: “Online Encyclopaedias will undoubtedly carry out a significant role in disseminating Iranian and Shiite culture. We plan to compile more online encyclopaedias such as the Encyclopaedia of Engineering in Iran, which will merely have a digital version.”
Ashraf Boroujerdi, the head of the National Library and Archives of Iran, also expressed her hope that a joint interaction will be possible to exploit what has been created in the CGIE as a valuable reserve for society. Referring to the verse of Quran (68: 1) in which there is an oath to the pen and what is written by it, she stated: “Based on these verses, it can be reasonably concluded that writing and appropriately presenting the written material is not only art but also virtue and can remain a lasting value for all generations. Especially in the present time that sometimes right and wrong words are intertwined intentionally and could be interpreted and used erroneously, distributing the reliable and accurate written material represents a valuable virtue.”
She added: “In the difficult conditions of the covid pandemic that staying at home is recommended seriously, such efforts have eminent benefits for the society. We retain thousands of years of historical, cultural, and scientific background, records of which are kept in the National Library. Mr. Bojnourdi’s previous efforts in the National Library continued by others and recently the project of the “Iranian National Memory System” was launched there. This system has four core parts, one of which is dedicated to the magazines and journals of Iran from the Qajar era to the present time.”
The head of the National Library thanked Mousavi Bojnourdi for properly supervising the online encyclopaedias and concluded: “Mr. Bojnourdi has been a source of long-lasting appreciated decent acts during his successful career. But his greatest work was to invite and gather knowledgeable professors and efficiently create a proper atmosphere for their scientific activities.”