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The Oneness of God and the Diversity of Religions: A Muslim Perspective

Lecture by Irfan A. Omar, Ph.D.
Tuesday, October 3, 2017, 4:15 PM
Quad 264, Saint John's University


"The Quranic declaration of the oneness of God (tawhid) comes with a startling revelation that God is the source of - and indeed belongs to - all of creation," claims Irfan A. Omar. "The Qur'an further makes it clear that differences in human societies with respect to culture, language, nationality, gender, and religion (among others) are divinely instituted, and should be seen as a blessing." In this lecture, Professor Omar will explore these and other similar Quranic teachings that implore us to consider the plurality of religions as a necessary foundation for personal, spiritual, and communal growth, as well as for mutual learning.

Irfan A. Omar is associate professor of theology at Marquette University in Milwaukee where he teaches courses on Islam, world religions, Christian-Muslim dialogue, and violence and nonviolence. He is also an affiliated faculty member with the Center for South Asia at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and has been a visiting Fulbright lecturer at Muhammadiyah University in Malang, Indonesia. Professor Omar earned his Ph.D. in religion from Temple University in Philadelphia in 2001 and his scholarship focuses on Islamic thought, interreligious connections between Islam and other religions, Islamic mysticism, and South Asian studies. In addition to writing numerous book chapters, journal articles, and book reviews, he has edited and co-edited seven books including Peacemaking and the Challenge of Violence in World Religions (Wiley-Blackwell, 2015), The Judeo-Christian-Islamic Heritage: Philosophical and Theological Perspectives (Marquette University Press, 2012), A Christian View of Islam: Essays on Dialogue by Thomas F. Michel, SJ (Orbis Books, 2010), and Heirs of Abraham: The Future of Muslim, Jewish, and Christian Relations (Orbis Books, 2005). He currently serves on the editorial boards of the Journal of Ecumenical Studies and the Journal of Race, Ethnicity, and Religion