Ibn Arabi Symposium: "Response and Responsibility"
The 2010 Symposium will be in partnership with the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley. There will be 1 lecture on the Friday evening, 3 talks on the Saturday morning and a series of workshops and discussions on Saturday afternoon.
October 15 & 16, 2010
Among the speakers that have accepted our invitation to speak are James Morris, Todd Lawson, Giv Nassiri and Jane Carroll.
James Morris, Boston College, Theology Department
"Whose Calling, Whose Response? Ibn 'Arabi on Divine and Human Responsiveness"
Prof. Morris has taught Islamic and comparative religious studies at the University of Exeter, Princeton, Oberlin, and the Sorbonne, and lectures widely on the Islamic humanities, Islamic philosophy, Sufism, and the use of cinema in spiritual teaching. Recent books include Ostad Elahi's Knowing the Spirit (2007); The Reflective Heart: Discovering Spiritual Intelligence in Ibn 'Arabî's 'Meccan Illuminations' (2005); Orientations: Islamic Thought in a World Civilisation (2004); [Turkish translation: Yonelimler: Bir Dunya Medeniyetinde Islam Dusuncesi. (Istanbul, Insan yayinlari, 2006)] and The Meccan Revelations (2003).
Todd Lawson, University of Toronto, Department of Near and Middle Eastern Civilizations
"Ibn Arabi's Joseph: Imagination as Holy Communion"
Todd Lawson, PhD, teaches Islamic Thought at the University of Toronto. His interests include the Qur'an and its interpretation over time, Islamic Gnosis, Shi'ism and its later developments such as the Babi and Bahai religions. He has published numerous articles on these and other topics as well as two books, Reason and Inspiration in Islam (London 2005) and The Crucifixion and the Qur'an (Oxford 2009). His book Gnostic Apocalypse in Islam is scheduled to appear later this year.
Jane Carroll, Board Member Muhyiddin Ibn Arabi Society USA and Architect
"The Eye's Response"
This illustrated talk on the Alhambra in Granada, Spain will focus on the spiritual and philosophical understanding underlying the architecture and geometry, which was greatly influenced by the study of Ibn 'Arabi and his contemporaries. In particular we will look at how the visual response can transcend art historical study to bring forth a direct experience of unity. The bare materials of wood, stone and plaster were transformed by intelligent design to create a unitative experience which inspires our own responsibility towards ourselves, each other and our environment.
Jane Carroll first studied the works of Ibn 'Arabi at the Beshara School in the 1970's. Concurrently she studied at the Architectural Association under Keith Critchlow with a specific interest in sacred geometry and Islamic architecture. She is on the board of the Ibn 'Arabi Society in America and currently works as an architect in Ojai, California.
Giv Nassiri, Pacific School of Religion, History Department
"Response and Responsiveness in Night Vigils"
With Bachelors and Masters degrees in fields related to the political economy of developed countries and community development from UCB and Sorbonne he began work as a community planner and public management consultant. During his professional career he was struck by an article on Ibn Arabi's description of his spiritual dream of visitation with prophets and decided to study Sufism. In 2002, he received his PhD from UCB in the History of the Near East with a focus on its social and Sufi history. His PhD dissertation documents and analyzes the fusion of the Turco-Persian civilization through the mechanism of its scholars' extensive interactions, often through travel and migration. His work in progress includes a descriptive catalogue of rare Sufi manuscripts found in an ancient manuscript library in Istanbul. His published works include articles on the role of pious religious scholars in reviving Islamic cosmopolitanism, and Islam and modernity.
Since 1996, he has taught courses on the history of Sufism and Islamic social history at the Graduate Theological Union and co-teaches comparative spirituality and religious interfaith.
With thanks to our partners: