It is often said that racism is America’s “original sin.” In 2013, we mark 150 years since the Emancipation Proclamation and 50 years since the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King’s momentous “I have a dream” speech at the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom. Yet race remains salient in American public life. This was never more evident than in the impassioned reactions to the shooting of Trayvon Martin in Florida last spring and the acquittal of George Zimmerman. How is religion a force for racial reconciliation? How is religion involved in maintaining racial division? Does 11:00 on Sunday morning remain, as Dr. King lamented in a 1968 sermon at the Washington National Cathedral, “the most segregated hour in America?” As immigration and changing demographics have reshaped the religious landscape, how will Christians relate to their neighbors of other faiths? We will study important stories of shared history, theological similarities and differences, and aspirations for social justice that both Christians and Muslims share as communities of faith. Religious differences provide fertile ground for animosity and misunderstanding. Over the years, both Muslims and Christians have dealt with extremists who distort the character of true belief. Significant, intelligent dialogue and the development of authentic friendships across religious lines are key to deepening Christians’ and Muslims’ faith. Recorded on
When polled, most Americans say they do not know a Muslim. More than 80 percent of media coverage about Islam and Muslims is negative, and Muslims have often found themselves at the center of social and political debate. When it comes to Muslim Americans, the narrative is more often created about our community by the media and by politicians, not by Muslim Americans themselves. If American Muslims do not define themselves individually and collectively, they leave themselves vulnerable to being defined by others.
Muslims are diverse and come from many parts of the world where culture varies. How do we reconcile these cultural differences with our religion of Islam. What is accepted and what isn’t? How do we determine this? As Islam spreads to new areas of the world where the cultury differs, how do they assimilate into an Islamic lifestyle?
Justice is not only foundational to Islam, but also in the religion of Christianity & Judaism. This panel above focused on the reasons why it is foundational to all three faiths. This discussion was led by Rabbi Micah Greenstein, Reverend Dr. Stephen R. Montgomery of Idlewild Presbyterian Church & Shaykh Dr Yasir Qadhi, from The Memphis Islamic Center. The panel also provided the audience with a better understanding of the similarities between the faiths, and their shared emphasis on Justice.
America was founded in part on the concept of religious freedom. Many today consider Muslims a grave threat to that founding principle. Is Islam incompatible with the free exercise of religion?
Recently, Shaykh Hamza contributed to the writing of the Marrakesh Declaration (2016) in Morocco affirming the rights of religious minorities in Muslim-majority countries, and met with Pope Francis in Rome to discuss the implications of this declaration.
This talk was part of a 2016 event at The Ignatian Center for Jesuit Education at Santa Clara University, where Professor Farid Senzai moderated the Q&A session.
One of the unique struggles of our generation is the tension that arises with attempting to reconcile technological developments and our secular education with our religious education and spiritual development. Sh. Abdul Nasir Jangda helps us understand the balance between the two spheres of knowledge.
Modern societies have become fundamentalist in their secularism and have effectively banned religion from the public square. Religion has been relegated to the status of a personal hobby, to be practiced behind closed doors. Does public morality suffer as a result? Is religious morality inherently divisive and disruptive as many believe?
This event celebrated the rollout of a new book, Religious Freedom: Why Now? Defending an Embattled Human Right, authored by RFP Associate Director Timothy Shah, under the auspices of the Witherspoon Institute’s Task Force on International Religious Freedom, chaired by RFP Director Thomas Farr. The event was co-sponsored by the Religious Freedom Project and the Witherspoon Institute. The keynote address was delivered by Robert P. George of Princeton University. Panels featured a wide range of participants, including noted Muslim scholar Sheikh Hamza Yusuf.