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Skidmore College
Jacob Perlow Series

Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf speaks on

"Advancing Peaceful Coexistence between Christians, Jews and Muslims"

Saturday, September 22, 2012
Filene Recital Hal

imamWe are very pleased to announce that the Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf, a member of the Board of Trustees of the Islamic Center of New York, of the Interfaith Center of New York, a member of the World Economic Forum, and founder and CEO of the Cordoba Initiative.

A highly respected advocate of inter-religious dialogue and well-known goodwill ambassador, Rauf is the author of several books on Islam, most recently, "Moving the Mountain: Beyond Ground Zero to a New Vision of Islam in America," just published by Free Press this year in May.  His interpretation of the Qur'an and his articulation of Islam as a peaceful religion have challenged the preconceptions held by many in the West, as well as the popularly held beliefs in Islam itself.  He states in his new book that it is his mission "to reclaim religious and political discourse from the extremists of all faiths who dominate so many of the headlines."

On the practical front, Imam Feisal has dedicated the Cordoba Initiative to the promulgation of innovative solutions to conflicts in the Middle East in which he sees a large role for the religious communities.  Principally, he challenges American Muslims to become leaders in a world-wide Islamic movement to reclaim the Qur'an in support of modern, moderate, just, open, and egalitarian societies.  But he has also challenged Christianity and Judaism to take peacemaking roles as well by delivering justice not religion.  The interfaith nature of his concerns underlies his vision to create Cordoba House, a center along the lines of the 92nd Street Y or the Jewish Community Center in NYC.

Imam Feisal has received numerous awards including Time magazine which named him among the 100 most influential people of the world and Arianna Huffington's "2010 Game Changer" Award, and was listed as one of the Top 100 Global Thinkers of 2010 by Foreign Policy magazine. Serving as respondents to Imam Feisal's talk will be Gregory Spinner, Assistant Prof. of Religion and a specialist in Judaism and Islam, and the Rev. Richard Chrisman, Ph.D., Director of Religious and Spiritual Life.  A question and answer period will follow.

The event is a collaboration of Skidmore's Office of Religious and Spiritual Life and the Saratoga Peace Week Committee.  Co-sponsoring groups on the Skidmore campus include the Jewish Student Life Office, the Jacob Perlow Fund, the Religion and Philosophy Dept., the International Affairs Dept., and the Intercultural Center.  This event is also supported by funding from the President's Discretionary Fund and from the Nordlys Foundation.