Here is a partial listing of past events on religions and the practice of peace at Harvard University and beyond. Videos and audio-recordings are posted when available.
Videos of past RPP Colloquium sessions and RPP talks on special topics can also be found in the RPP Video Archive.
The Religion, Conflict, and Dialogue (RCD) Research Center of the Faculty of Theology invites applications for two postdoctoral researcher positions for a one-year period starting on February 1, 2019 (or as agreed). For more information, see the job announcements found here and here.
Evolution is an organizing principle of the living world. While competition is integral to evolution, cooperation can be seen as the master architect of biological complexity, language, and culture. Human beings have emerged from this evolutionary process as “SuperCooperators.” Nowak will discuss the scientific interpretation of evolution and its compatibility with Christian theology, which holds that God is the primary cause for all that exists, the creator and sustainer of the universe.
In conversation with members of the Sustainable Peace Initiative, Nowak will offer insights on how evolutionary dynamics, altruistic virtues of “SuperCooperation,” and spiritual resources can be leveraged to advance sustainable peace and on the potential role of universities.
Featuring Martin Nowak, Professor of Mathematics and of Biology at Harvard University and director of the Program for Evolutionary Dynamics, moderator Janet Gyatso, Hershey Professor of Buddhist Studies and associate dean for faculty and academic affairs at Harvard Divinity School, and discussant Anne Monius, Professor of South Asian Religions at Harvard Divinity School.
Personalism has a new set of tasks in the present and near future. Furst, personalists need to reclaim the territory of “dignity” and “honor” particular to the idea of “person,” by reclaiming personalist strains in the history of thought, and by articulating a logic and metaphysics that ground the relations among the norms of reflection, active thinking, and the sensation/perception complex. A personalist theory of imagination is the most promising path. How should persons conceive themselves to enrich the intensity of personal existing? The answer lies in both limiting and freeing imaginative processes. Suggestions drawn principally from C.S. Peirce will be brought to bear on this task.
This documentary film depicts the stories of gang-involved youth, entangled in the intractable violence haunting Boston’s neighborhoods, and the StreetSafe Boston social and street workers tasked with helping to transform their lives. This Ain’t Normal examines the individual circumstances behind the violence, thereby gaining a deeper insight and understanding into the issue of youth violence, as it has grown to epidemic proportions in the City on the Hill and the nation.
We are inviting all currently students in degree programs at Harvard University who are interested in this “Peace Lab” activity in Spring 2019 to join us for a planning session with Professor Cesari. Food will be served.
As part of SPI’s and RPP’s activities in Spring 2019, Jocelyne Cesari, Visiting Professor of Religion, Violence, and Peacebuilding for 2018-19 at Harvard Divinity School (HDS), will organize a “Peace Lab” activity that will bring together students, scholars of religion, scholars of politics, and religious actors involved in peacebuilding in some specific contexts. The goal is to make HDS and Harvard students conversant with the vocabulary and concepts that drive decisions in peacebuilding processes in order to make the scholarship on religion relevant and accessible to various stakeholders. The long-term ambition of such an initiative is to help students gain professional efficiency to address crises that oblige religious actors and policy-makers to interact in any given context. To work toward that goal, Professor Cesari and Harvard students who participate in the “Peace Lab” activity will create the conditions of a laboratory in which students will work on a case study of their choice, by assessing and analysing the situation and providing recommendations for peacebuilding by soliciting diverse resources on campus and beyond (from scholarship to religious activism and policy-making). All Harvard students are welcome to apply to participate in this “Peace Lab” activity.
The situation of American Jews today is deeply paradoxical. Jews have achieved unprecedented integration, influence and esteem in virtually every facet of American life. But the community now also faces critical and sometimes divisive challenges relating to intermarriage, religious observance and deeply conflicting views over Israeli politics. In this personal and deeply-reasoned book, Professor Mnookin delves into Jewish history, law and custom to explore how American Jews can collectively sustain a strong sense of Jewish identity in light of these challenges.
Join us for our final Sustainable Peace Café for this Fall. We will have an evening of dialogue and interactive engagement where we will explore tools, such as compassionate listening, for navigating through differences in a world of systemic injustice. By bringing our unique experiences and outlooks, we will take on some of the issues plaguing our society today and attempt to generate sustainable solutions that we can carry with us into our everyday lives and communities.
The new documentary film Backs Against the Wall: The Howard Thurman Story will premiere Saturday November 17th at 9 pm at the American Academy of Religion Annual Meeting. The film tells the dramatic story of Howard Thurman, the African American theologian who was the grandson of slaves but went on to become one of the most significant religious figures of the 20th century. He authored more than 20 books—including the classic Jesus and the Disinherited—pioneered interfaith worship space, and became a leading visionary for non-violent resistance that profoundly influenced Martin Luther King, Jr and the entire Civil Rights Movement.
In the spirit of collaboration that is central to the Sustainable Peace Cafés, this second session will serve as a space in which all can come together to create a visual representation of our mutual commitment to the practice of peace. We invite participants to bring this spirit of collaboration into their own contexts, and cultivate friendships across differences in the process. Come prepared to speak briefly about a piece of art, poetry, music, film, etc. that inspires your peace practice, if you wish.
Space is limited. RSVP is required.
Women make a difference in society and in international relations as agents of peace and promoters of development. According to the Women and Foreign Policy Program of the US Council on Foreign Relations (CFR), their contribution in aforementioned areas is distinctive. They frequently cover responsibility roles in venture capital projects, and their work as negotiators in case of conflict is highly valuable. However their role is still marginalized in some societies due to both religious and cultural taboos. Understanding the reciprocal relationship between cultural and religious norms is critical.
Professor Jocelyne Cesari attended the “Women, Faith, and Culture” seminar promoted by the International Foundation for Inter-religious and Intercultural Education (IFIIE) in collaboration with the Institute of International Affairs (IAI) at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation. Watch the video of the November 14 talk here.
Interested in Alternative Dispute Resolution as a career? Want to meet professionals in the field? Join HLSN, HMP, and HNLR for their annual ADR Career Panel. The evening will start with a panel of ADR experts. After the panel, there will be a networking reception with refreshments. The panelists are Nicholas Diehl (MIT Ombudsman), Kyle Glover (Pierce Atwood Associate), Heather Kulp (Alternative Dispute Resolution Coordinator, New Hampshire Judicial Branch), Audrey Lee (Boston Law Collaborative), and Stacie Smith (Consensus Building Institute).
In the third event of the ILSP-LSC Workshop Series on Gender, Law, and Society, Lihi Ben Shitrit, Research Fellow at the Belfer Center’s Middle East Initiative, will speak on the gendered dimensions of inter-communal disputes over Jerusalem. The discussion will cover three contemporary women’s movements and their role in this conflict: messianic Jewish Orthodox women’s activism; Orthodox Muslim women’s activism; and Women of the Wall’s Jewish feminist mobilization. Ben Shitrit will demonstrate how attention to gender and to women’s engagement in the conflict over sacred spaces is essential for understanding the intra-communal processes that make inter-communal conflict increasingly intractable.
After the 2016 presidential election, Dr. Paula Green turned her focus to addressing US communal relations fractured across lines of historical enmity and current partisanship. Engaging communities antagonistic to each other because of their political allegiances, she and other residents of her hometown of Leverett, MA, co-created Hands Across the Hills. Modeled on her international work, this 2017-2018 project featured extended dialogues and cultural exchanges between groups from MA and KY. A newly emerging 2019 project will focus on racial divides and include participants from SC, MA, and KY.
The new documentary film The Optimists, produced by Irit Ambar, tells the story of Dr. Tareq Abu Hamad, a Palestinian chemist, who relocates with his family to Kibbutz Ketura in the southern Arava, in order to become the Academic Director of the Arava Institute for Environmental Studies. The Arava Institute was founded 20 years ago on Kibbutz Ketura in order to advance cross-border environmental cooperation by bringing together Israelis, Palestinians, Jordanians and others in an academic program that teaches that “nature knows no borders”.
This fall 2018, the instructors and students of Harvard Law School’s “The Lawyer as Facilitator” course will host Let’s Disagree—a series of three small-group discussions, led by student facilitators as the capstone event of a semester-long facilitation workshop. We aim to convene people with diverse personal backgrounds and political views to address polarizing civic issues. For more information and to see the application please click here.
Join the Boston Law Collaborative Institute and several other organizations for a one-day workshop on strategies for faith leaders to facilitate constructive dialogue in our polarized communities. Speakers include Dr. Richard Schwartz and Rev. Mariama White.
Ten years ago, two experts on negotiation, William Ury and James Sebenius were inspired to apply their research and experience to the Middle East. They launched a cross-cultural bridge building effort through a multi-country network of walking trails tracing the ancient journey of Abraham, patriarch of three great religions. Dr. Ury will share how his experience mediating international conflicts inspired his belief in the power of simple first steps. Professor Sebenius will provide a case study of the Abraham Path’s unlikely accomplishments in strategic negotiation and social entrepreneurship.
Join the Mahindra Humanities Center for a Reading and Conversation with Osama Alomar, Mahmoud Nowara, and Samar Yazbek, moderated by Riad Ismat. Opening remarks by Jacqueline Bhabha, Professor of the Practice of Health and Human Rights.
On a recent journey across Europe, Holocaust survivor Tomi Reichental witnessed a resurgence of the xenophobia and extreme nationalism that destroyed the world of his childhood and led to the death of 35 members of his family. In the acclaimed documentary, Condemned to Remember, Reichental sees history repeating itself. In the discussion afterwards, he and Emmy award – winning director Gerry Gregg will reflect on these fears, and the importance for societies to learn from the past and address these challenges today.
Liz Walker has worn many hats over her career, including Emmy-winning journalist, human rights activist, and reverend. Walker is senior pastor of Roxbury Presbyterian Church, where she leads the Cory Johnson Program for Post-Traumatic Healing, an innovative effort that—in partnership with the Boston Medical Center—addresses the epidemic of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder in a low-income African- American community. Before becoming a reverend, Walker was Boston’s first African-American television news anchor on WBZ TV, serving as a veteran journalist for 21 years. Sent on assignment to cover Sudan’s slave trade, Walker shifted her attention to helping Sudanese women and girls for 11 years, helping to build one of the first schools for girls in the region. She holds numerous honorary degrees and hosts a daily radio show on WROL.
Come join students and alumni from across campus and community members in nurturing our commitment to the practice of peace and sharing our wisdom and resources! In this first session we encourage you to bring a peace story from your own spiritual or wisdom tradition; a story of a time when you’ve seen a mentor or community enacting peace; or a story of a moment when you helped peace to grow in your own context.
Space is limited. RSVP is required.
Anglican church leaders in sub-Saharan Africa have a vision of a malaria-free world. Join us for a panel discussion on the role of faith and learn how religious leaders and communities are working to end malaria for good.
Bariza Khiari is former Vice-President of the French Senate and current President of the Islamic Culture Institute in Paris. She has recently been appointed by President Macron to represent France on the Board of the ALIPH Foundation aimed at promoting the protection of cultural heritage in conflict areas. Through her own journey from her childhood in Algiers to the highest responsibilities in France, Khiari will examine the questions of diversity and inclusion in Europe, focusing on the status of Islam in France, the French Left, as well as the “En Marche” movement and its impact on French and European politics.
For many decades, the United States government encouraged the forced removal of Native American children from their families, often placing them into foster care with white families to “assimilate” them, and stripping them of all connections to their heritage. Recognizing the need for change, a group of Native and non-Native leaders in Maine engaged in a series of painful but honest conversations about this difficult topic. As a result, the Maine Wabanaki-State Child Welfare Truth & Reconciliation Commission was established. We invite you to join us for a discussion with Esther Anne, a Wabanaki community leader who helped establish the Maine Wabanaki-State Child Welfare Truth & Reconciliation Commission.
For much of the 20th century, child welfare authorities removed Native American children from their tribal homes, devastating parents and denying children their traditions, culture, and identity. The feature-length documentary Dawnland chronicles the first official truth and reconciliation commission in the United States for Native Americans and explores the possibilities of healing and reconciliation. A panel conversation and a Q&A session follow the screening.
The Riyaaz Qawwali ensemble was established on a college campus in the US 12 years ago. Since then, it has toured the country, debuting in Europe in 2017. Artistic Director and founder of Riyaaz Qawwali, Sonny Mehta will share his personal story from learning classical music to performing qawwali, the musical genre commonly associated with the Sufi tradition in South Asia. He will demonstrate the basics of qawwali, unfolding the relevant musical elements, poetry and important performance aspects. With the backdrop of the history of qawwali in the US, he will share Riyaaz Qawwali’s journey and how the ensemble has found their voice through performances, breaking, in the process, cultural and religious barriers.
Five dancers and two scientists, including Martin A. Nowak of Harvard University, will take to the stage and push the boundaries of art and science, fusing dance, evolutionary dynamics, and an interactive game. It explores mechanisms of cooperation and investigates a question that is at the heart of all sustainable development: Are humans able to cooperate with future generations? What kind of planet are we willing to leave behind for the people who come after us?
Over the last two decades a number of refugees, mostly from Africa, have arrived in Israel seeking political asylum. Israel set up a regime to deal with them, which has lately become increasingly exclusionary. Earlier this year the issue erupted into a political crisis. This talk will describe these processes in a comparative context, through a conversation between Mutasim Ali, a recognized refugee from Sudan, a law student and a community leader, who will share his personal journey, and Dr. Tally Kritzman-Amir, a leading legal scholar in this field.
Herbert C. Kelman has been engaged for many years in the development of interactive problem solving, an unofficial third party approach to the resolution of international and inter-communal conflicts, and in its application to the Arab-Israeli conflict, with special emphasis on its Israeli-Palestinian component. The interview will be conducted by Donna Hicks, Associate of the Weatherhead Center for International Affairs.
The International Day of Peace (“Peace Day”) is observed around the world each year on 21 September. Established in 1981 by unanimous United Nations resolution 36/37, the General Assembly has declared this as a day devoted to “commemorating and strengthening the ideals of peace both within and among all nations and peoples.” Peace Day provides a globally shared date for all humanity to commit to Peace above all differences and to contribute to building a Culture of Peace. This year's theme is "The Right to Peace – The Universal Declaration of Human Rights at 70." Click here to see how you can get involved.
The Charles Hamilton Houston Institute for Race and Justice launches this year’s Transformative Justice Series of events with a screening of the documentary film Circle Up, the story of a grieving mother, the men who murdered her son, and the unexpected relationships they create to prevent more violence. Circle Up is a call to action for reframing approaches to crime and punishment through the lens of restorative justice, forgiveness, and accountability. The screening is a fitting follow up to last year’s screening of Tribal Justice, which chronicled two Native American justices applying the practice in their courts.
In Lighting the Fires of Freedom Janet Dewart Bell shines a light on women’s all-too-often overlooked achievements in the Movement. Through wide-ranging conversations with nine women, several now in their nineties with decades of untold stories, we hear what ignited and fueled their activism, as Bell vividly captures their inspiring voices. Lighting the Fires of Freedom offers these deeply personal and intimate accounts of extraordinary struggles for justice that resulted in profound social change, stories that are vital and relevant today.
This past summer in two separate acts of vandalism, ominously reminiscent of Kristallnacht almost 80 years ago, two of the iconic glass panels of the New England Holocaust Memorial were shattered. We will rededicate the now fully restored New England Holocaust Memorial in a symbolic gesture of our resilience and perseverance.
The commemoration will feature Rabbi Alan Turetz, a second-generation Holocaust survivor of Temple Emeth in Chestnut Hill, survivor testimony from Esther Adler, and the winners of the 12th annual Israel Arbeiter Essay Contest. Please register for the event here.
Bosnia, Rwanda, Haiti, Afghanistan, Iraq, and Syria – a quarter-century of stumbles in America’s pursuit of a more peaceful and just world. American military interventions have cost thousands of lives and billions of dollars, yet we rarely manage to enact positive and sustainable change. In his first book, Peace Works: America’s Unifying Role in a Turbulent World, Ambassador and global conflict leader, Rick Barton, uses a mix of stories, history, and analysis for a transformative approach to foreign affairs and offers concrete and attainable solutions for the future.
"Moral Courage for Public Policy": What does this mean? Why do communities need to be a part of shaping public policy? What areas do they want involvement in? What are some examples in communities already? How do WE participate in society? It will be a night of music, community awards, and a great way to meet people across our different constituencies. Roxbury Presbyterian Church's senior pastor, Reverend Liz Walker, joined them in December of 2011. Rev. Liz, an ordained minister in the African Methodist Episcopal tradition is a 2005 graduate of Harvard Divinity School and a veteran television journalist, the first African-American weeknight news anchor in Boston.
Do you want to join a community of people of faith and conscience committed to taking action as well as practicing reflection? Are you seeking ways to offer grounded solidarity that don't reproduce oppressive practices? Have you ever gone to an immigration (ICE) check-in or court to support a person at risk of deportation? Is your congregation part of the New Sanctuary Movement, or talking about joining?
Join a four-session monthly online course that explores these ideas and more.
IFYI is an interfaith, week-long immersion experience in August for young leaders (high school age) that provides an opportunity to meaningfully engage with important global and local issues through the lens of their own faith tradition and spiritual identity as well as the different faith traditions and spirituality of others. We bring together delegates from Jewish, Christian, Muslim, and other faith traditions for training in transformative, interfaith leadership and peace building skills.
The Herbert C. Kelman Seminar on International Conflict Analysis and Resolution series presents Ali Banuazizi, Professor of Political science at Boston College and the Director of the Program in Islamic Civilization & Societies. He served as the founding editor of the journal of Iranian Studies, from 1968 to 1982. He is a past President of the Association for Iranian Studies (AIS), of the Middle East Studies Association (MESA), and Associate Editor of the Encyclopedia of Islam and the Muslim World.
Join the The Harvard Project on American Indian Economic Development for a very special Forum event that they are co-sponsoring with the Institute of Politics at the Harvard Kennedy School. The Institute of Politics Forum is Harvard’s primary venue for public political discussion and draws world leaders from numerous fields, providing the opportunity for serious discussion
In December 2015, Leon McCarron set off from Jerusalem to walk 1000 miles through the heart of the Middle East. The five-month-long journey took him through the rolling green hills and terraced olive groves of the West Bank; the deep chasm-like wadis and ancient kingdoms of Jordan; and vast, rugged deserts of the Sinai Peninsula. Working on the premise that the brain works best at 3 miles per hour, this talk will explore the various layers of culture, history, faith and politics at work in the bubbling cauldron of one of the most complex and compelling places on earth – the Holy Land.
Kimberly Blockett, Visiting Associate Professor of Women's Studies and African American Religions, and Colorado Scholar from Penn State, Brandywine, will be presenting “Race, Religion, and Rebellion: Recovering the Antebellum Writing and Itinerant Ministry of Zilpha Elaw”.
In the thirteenth talk of the series, Parker Gilbert Montgomery Professor of the Practice of Religion and Public Life, J. Bryan Hehir will give a talk titled: The Time of Trump and the Papacy of Francis: Contending Conceptions of Rights, Duties and Relationships.
Join Professor of Comparative Religion at Harvard Divinity School and Founder and Director of The Pluralism Project Diana Eck for a conversation about Humanism and religious pluralism.
The First Annual Symposium on Islam, Dialogue, and Sectarian De-Escalation at the Harvard Kennedy School has gathered a diversity of voices from leading scholars, religious authorities, civic community leaders, and policymakers alike to push forward analytical understanding and dialogue on the pressing topic of sectarianism in the Muslim world.
Join the Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Islamic Studies Program for a lecture titled, given by Ambassador Akbar Ahmed, the Ibn Khaldun Chair of Islamic Studies at American University.
The Peacemaker follows international peacemaker Padraig O'Malley, who helps make peace for others but struggles to find it for himself.
The film takes us from Padraig's isolated life in Cambridge, Massachusetts to some of the most dangerous crisis zones on Earth – from Northern Ireland to Kosovo, Nigeria to Iraq over five years – as he works a peacemaking model based on his recovery from addiction. We meet Padraig in the third act of his life in a race against time to find some kind of salvation for both the world and himself.
The Stendahl Symposium has become an annual HDS tradition in memory of former professor Krister Stendahl. Professor Stendahl tirelessly sought to repair fractions between Jews and Christians, supported the ordination of women, and pushed for the full inclusion and participation of women and minority voices in academia and interfaith work. The conference each year carries Stendahl’s legacy forward by presenting four student papers centered around the topic, “Conversations Across Religious Boundaries.”
Countering Violent Extremism (CVE) is a campaign driven by intelligence and federal law enforcement agencies that claims to steer people off pathways to “extremism” by extending “soft surveillance” into non-profit institutions, mosques, and health, education, and social services sectors. CVE often directs communities to watch for indicators that are extremely common, such as “children…becoming confrontational,” providing an invitation to profile using implicit biases. CVE in the US is modeled after PREVENT in the UK, which has had especially awful impacts on Muslim, Black, LGBTQ and refugee communities. The recruitment of trusted teachers and mental health service providers as spies and deprogrammers disrupts our children’s education and obstructs marginalized communities’ ability to use health services with privacy and dignity. Let us educate ourselves as a community of educators about the challenges we may face as trusted educators, and for us to leave informed about this critical measure pervasive in schools, and reflect on our role as educators in this new reality.
Prathima Muniyappa, an architect at the Harvard Design School on how to repair or re-imagine destroyed sacred groves in India and how myth can be designed. Tim Gallati, a sound artist and graduating MDiv at Harvard Divinity School, on experiences of “silence” in nature and contemplative practice with applications in virtual and augmented realities. Greer Simpkins Epstein, a socially-engaged lingerie designer and feminist entrepreneur of Hello Beautiful, offers insights into the fashion world and how to re-imagine how women see themselves, how business practice and product materials can be ethically engaged and environmentally sourced, and the lines of connection between spirituality, sexuality, our personal lives and consumer choices, and manufacturing.
The Rev. Traci Blackmon is the Executive Minister of Justice & Witness Ministries of The United Church of Christ and Senior Pastor of Christ The King United Church of Christ in Florissant, MO.
A featured voice with many regional, national, and international media outlets & publications, Rev. Blackmon’s communal leadership and work in the aftermath of the killing of Michael Brown, Jr., in Ferguson, MO, has gained her international recognition and audiences from the White House to the Carter Center to the Vatican. She was appointed to the President’s Advisory Council on Faith-Based Neighborhood Partnerships for the White House by President Barack H. Obama.
Join the Islamic Studies Department at Harvard for the Alwaleed Faculty Supper Colloquium titled: Constitutionalizing the Muslim State: Issues, Agreements, and Disagreements. A lecture by Malika Zeghal.
Ewa Chrusciel’s writing revolves around the issues of dislocation, immigration, exile, and cross-cultural desire. Her migratory poems and narratives are distinctly errant. They're haunted by a childhood lived under a Communist regime, by the austerity of Eastern block politics, and by the possibility of discovering a fleeting language in whose very excesses are carried the seeds of illicit revelation, spiritual transformation and ethnic insight. In her newest book, Of Annunciations, Chrusciel maps the biblical event of annunciation onto the current migration crises. Her book investigates the question, "What does it mean to say “yes” to a stranger?" Through prayer, lament, and lullaby, Chrusciel attempts to give voice to the voiceless and find healing in what seems to be an insurmountable rift of dislocation.
In Tribal Justice, two Native American judges reach back to traditional concepts of justice in order to reduce incarceration rates, foster greater safety for their communities and create a more positive future for youth. By addressing the root causes of crime, they are modeling restorative systems that are working.
Film screening followed by remarks by the film’s executive producer Ruth Cowan, HGSE student and FIERCE member Morgan Christopher, and HLS student and NALSA member Chad Mata.
The film Sand Storm takes place behind closed doors in an “unrecognized” Bedouin village in the Israeli Negev Desert. The drama turns on the ways in which people in a tradition-bound culture come in conflict with modernity and opportunities. Women, especially younger women, must come up with new strategies to negotiate multi-faceted challenges relating to rules created by men, by their elders, and by the larger Israeli society, represented by the government.
The 2nd Annual Black Religion, Spirituality and Culture Conference at the Harvard Divinity School will focus on Activism and Community in Scholarship. The conference will explore the links between activism, community, and scholarship and how scholars and practitioners combine these three in the work that they are engaged with. It will also explore the implications for this embodied scholarship and activism within academia, religious and nonprofit organizations, communities, and society at large.
As future clergy, scholars and community leaders, theology students in Boston will need to learn to communicate across deep divides of faith and spirituality. “Loving and Listening” is a series of conversations spurred on by the Lenten season of reflection and consecration where students from all religious traditions are invited to hear one another’s stories. RSVP by emailing Kelly Steinhaus at firstname.lastname@example.org and please indicate any dietary needs. Look for upcoming event details on facebook.
The Racial Justice Symposium (RJS), Racial Trauma & Healing in Social Work: Research, Policy & Practice, is a student-run event that aims to bridge the gap between scholars and practitioners within the field of Social Work. The inaugural symposium is designed to provide participants with resources and tools to analyze the multiple manifestations of racism and racial oppression and frame their work through a combined micro and macro lens. The Racial Justice Symposium is presented by Social Work Umoja and sponsored by the Research in Social, Economic, and Environmental Equity (RISE3) and the Office of the Dean of the Boston College School of Social Work.
Why should people of faith engage the issue of climate change – and how should we do it? Join us as Rev. Antal presents a compelling case that it’s time for religious communities to meet this moral challenge and to embrace a new vocation so that future generations might live in harmony with God’s creation. Join the School of Theological Studies at BU for a book signing.
Join panelists Kenneth Elmore, BU Dean of Students, Cornell Brooks, STH/LAW Visiting Professor of Social Ethics, Law, and Justice Movements, Judith Oleson, Co-Director of the STH Religion and Conflict Transformation Program, and Abrigal Forrester, Director of Community Action, Madison Park Development Corporation, to explore the topics of moral courage, gun violence, and advocating for gun legislation.
The Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Islamic Studies Program at Harvard University is pleased to announce our upcoming conference on Islam and Toleration with a keynote address by Khizr M. Khan. This conference aims to explore the concept and realities of toleration in the Islamic tradition with a focus on contemporary work, from Asia and Africa to Europe and the United States.
Over the course of three evenings in March and April, the Harvard Negotiation and Mediation Clinical Program will host Let’s Disagree—a series of small-group discussions led by trained facilitators. Our aim is to convene people with diverse personal backgrounds and political views to address polarizing civic issues. Let’s Disagree is designed to explore deep differences of opinion and experience in a facilitated setting that encourages participants to embrace and learn from conflict. We welcome students, staff, faculty, and members of the greater Boston community.
"ḤARĀM" is an essay film portraying the urgent contemporary situation at the Haram Al Sharif/ Noble Sanctuary in the Old City of Jerusalem reflecting on the growing Temple Mount Faithful movement whose goal is to build the Jewish Third Temple on this holy landscape and in turn to assert Jewish sovereignty over this holy Muslim site. Cynthia Madansky will discuss her film following the screening. Bio: Cynthia Madansky is an award winning filmmaker and painter. Her films integrate hybrid forms of cinematic traditions including autobiography, experimental methodologies, cinema verité, scripted narrative, ethnographic observation as well as dance and performance. She is a current fellow of the Guggenheim Memorial Fellowship.
Join the Pluralism Project in the Thompson Room of the Barker Center for a panel and discussion featuring Diana Eck, Professor, Harvard University and Director, The Pluralism Project; Eboo Patel, Founder and President of Interfaith Youth Core; Jennifer Peace, Associate Professor of Interfaith Studies, Andover Newton Theological School; and Rabbi Or Rose, Director, The Miller Center for Interreligious Learning and Leadership, Hebrew College.
The monastic life requires managing the tension between prophetic engagement and contemplative practice. Sr. Sarah Randall of the Society of St. Margaret will explore the landscape of Anglican Women’s religious orders, as well how this ancient vocation finds its expression in seeking social justice.
Sister Sarah Randall has been a member of the Society of St. Margaret, based in Duxbury, MA, since 2000. An alumna of the Episcopal Divinity School, she was ordained to the priesthood in the Diocese of Massachusetts in 2011, and has served in Chelsea, MA, as well as with the Society of St. Margaret community that is based in Haiti.
This event is hosted by the Center for the Study of World Religions
Religious tensions between Islam, Christianity and Judaism are some of the most complex, consequential and ominous challenges in today’s global community. Mustafa Akyol, a prominent Turkish journalist and Muslim intellectual, offers an unexpected possibility for building bridges between the three Abrahamic faiths: the Islamic Jesus—that is Jesus as he shows up in the Qur’an. Come hear and discuss the “provocative,” “timely and important” insights from Akyol’s new book The Islamic Jesus: How the King of the Jews Became a Prophet of the Muslims.
Three exceptional storytellers, Rohina Malik, Susan Stone, and Kim Schultz, will share stories from their own faiths – Christian, Muslim and Jewish – to transcend differences through a shared belief in the power of compassion and connection.
The Center for the Study of World Religions’ Annual Greeley Lecture for Peace and Social Justice will be delivered by Kelly Brown Douglas. This lecture will examine the social/political and theological implications of whiteness as an impediment to living into God’s justice. Special attention will be given to the implications for the church as well as theological education.
Rev. Dr. Kelly Brown Douglas is Dean of Episcopal Divinity School at Union Theological Seminary. Ordained as an Episcopal priest in 1983, Douglas holds a master’s degree in theology and a Ph.D. in systematic theology from Union. She is the author of many articles and five books, including Stand Your Ground: Black Bodies and the Justice of God which was written in response to the murder of Trayvon Martin. Professor Douglas’s academic work focuses on womanist theology, sexuality, and the black church. She was formerly the Susan D. Morgan Professorship of Religion at Goucher College.
Is religion a cause of violent conflict or a catalyst for its transformation? Do faith leaders have a role at the international peacebuilding tables? Current international affairs highlight the power of religious ideologies—and their misappropriation—as a catalyst for social action. They have also prompted unprecedented interest in the role of religious leaders and ideologies to transform conflict and violence.
The keynote session of the fourth annual RPP Colloquium dinner series will feature Canon Sarah Snyder, PhD, Archbishop of Canterbury's Director of Reconciliation, and The Right Reverend Anthony Poggo, Advisor for Anglican Communion Affairs to the Archbishop of Canterbury and former Diocesan Bishop of Kajo-Keji, South Sudan, who will share their experience of working in conflict zones and reflect on vital lessons for the contemporary world.
The session will be moderated by David N. Hempton, Dean of the Faculty of Divinity, Alonzo L. McDonald Family Professor of Evangelical Theological Studies, John Lord O'Brian Professor of Divinity.
Co-sponsored by the Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School.
Housed and un-housed people are all invited to celebrate and memorialize those we have lost in the past year. We will do this in music, prayer and stories as we read the names of all our marginalized neighbors we have lost to the streets. All faith traditions are encouraged to attend and faith leaders are asked to attire according to their tradition. A light meal will follow.
Artificial intelligence has become the catchphrase of our time, mediating great hopes and fears in anticipation of a new era in human history. Some expect that we’re going to merge with machines and upgrade ourselves into God-like beings with divine abilities of creation and destruction. Others fear that machines will surpass their human creators and take control over our world. We aim to scrutinize these perils as part of a larger, intercultural dialogue, where preconceived dualisms are challenged.
The Institute on Culture, Religion, and World Affairs at Boston University Colloquium with Sana Haque, Pardee School of Global Studies. The first half of the session will include feedback on Sana's paper, and the second half will be her response. Sana Haque's paper aims to analyze the rhetoric on Islamophobia in Europe in traditional and new media. It also considers the counter-narrative developed by the Muslim community to undermine negative stereotypes. The paper argues against the idea that Muslims are passive in the face of Islamist terror and Islamophobia. This counter-narrative not only subverts stereotype but also builds understanding and allows Muslims to actively reshape their own identities.
How can contemplative prayer motivate community activism? Can one live a monastic life while responding to the demand for justice in the world? And where does collaboration and movement building fit into it all? Join us for a conversation with Rev. Janie Walker, the co-pastoral director of Richmond Hill, an intentional Christian community committed to social justice in Richmond, Virginia.
The Boston University Institute for Philosophy and Religion presents their 2017-2018 lecture series: Love and Hate. Fall 2017 marks the third and final year in a three-year exploration of the theological virtues and their opposites: faith and doubt, hope and despair, love and hate. These virtues have important resonances in classical philosophy and throughout the Western tradition of philosophical and religious reflection about what it means to live a good life. This is true of faith and hope, and is even more true of love. Aristotle said that no one would choose to live without friendship. Would anyone choose to live without love? What is love? How does it develop? How is it related to happiness? How is it related to hate? These questions, and others like them, lie at the heart of religious reflection in many different traditions. This series will explore the possibility of an answer. This lecture is given by Molly Farneth, Assistant Professor of Religion at Haverford College.
Bryan Stevenson, Founder and Executive Director of the Equal Justice Initiative, author of Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption, will deliver a lecture followed by a panel discussion. Panelists include Homi Bhabha, Director of the Mahindra Humanities Center at Harvard, Drew Faust, President, Harvard University, Nancy Gertner, Senior Lecturer on Law, Harvard Law School, and Tommie Shelby, Caldwell Titcomb Professor in the Department of African and African American Studies and the Department of Philosophy, Harvard University. The event is sponsored by the Mahindra Center and the Office of the President at Harvard. It is free, but tickets are required.
Shareida Hosein served as the US Army's first female Muslim Chaplain. Join her and the Center for the Study of Jewish-Christian-Muslim Relations at Merrimack College for an evening of shared dialogue.
Kids4Peace Boston is looking for Muslim, Jewish, and Christian current 6th and 7th graders to join us for 8 days of summer camp fun (swimming, boating, sports, hiking, arts and crafts and more) on the shores of a crystal-clear lake in the mountains of New Hampshire. The camp is open to youth who live in the greater Boston area and are in the 6th or 7th grade during the 2017-2018 school year. Kids4Peace campers are open-minded; like to try new experiences and make new friends; and are eager to share about their lives, cultures, and religious traditions. To learn more and submit an application, visit the camp's website.
Zia-Ebrahimi builds on recent comparative research on antisemitism and Islamophobia to argue that the two display similar dynamics in representing their target population as a hostile race (a process referred to as ‘racialization’). His research suggests that conspiracy theories of the ‘world Jewish conspiracy’ type, and their Islamophobic equivalent, the ‘Islamisation of Europe’ type, are powerful enablers of racialization, something that the literature has so far neglected. To show the similar dynamics of what he calls ‘conspiratorial racialization’, Zia-Ebrahimi provides a textual comparison between The Protocols of the Elders of Zion (1903) and Eurabia: The Euro-Arab Axis (2005). This event is hosted by the Alwaleed Islamic Studies Program and the Center for the Study of World Religions.
The crisis of global modernity has been produced by human overreach that was founded upon a paradigm of national modernization. Today, three global changes: the rise of non-western powers, the crisis of environmental sustainability and the loss of authoritative sources of transcendence – the ideals, principles and ethics once found in religions -- define our condition. The physical salvation of the world is becoming the transcendent goal of our times, transcending national sovereignty. The foundations of sovereignty can no longer be sought in tunnelled histories of nations; we are recognizing that histories have always been circulatory and the planet is a collective responsibility.
Prasenjit Duara re-considers the values and resources in Asian traditions—particularly of China and India—that Max Weber found wanting in their capacity to achieve modernity. Several traditions in Asia, particularly in environmentally marginalized local communities offer different ways of understanding the relationship between the personal, ecological and universal. The idea of transcendence in these communities is more dialogical than radical or dualistic: separating God or the human subject from nature. Transnational civil society, NGOS, quasi-governmental and inter-governmental agencies committed to to the inviolability or sacrality of the "commons" are finding common cause with these communities struggling to survive.
As a part of the Critical Perspectives On The Development and Dynamics of Islam in Africa Lecture Series. Guest Speaker is Darren Kew, Associate Professor at University of Massachusetts Boston.
This event is cosponsored with the Department of African and African American Studies, the Center for African Studies, the Hutchins Center, and the Department of Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations
Forests think. This is neither a metaphor nor a cultural belief. There exists a kind of thinking, which I call “sylvan,” that is made exquisitely manifest by tropical forests and those that live with them. This kind of thought extends well beyond us humans and, in fact, holds our human forms of thinking. Thinking with the sylvan logics that thinking forests amplify can provide an ethical orientation—a mode of thought—that is adequate for these times of planetary human-driven ecological devastation that some call the “Anthropocene.” I here discuss three projects in and around the tropical forests of Ecuador whose goal is to capacitate sylvan thought. This research, which has brought me into collaboration with indigenous leaders and shamans, lawyers and conceptual artists, and even forest spirits and archaic pre-hispanic ceramic figures, has encouraged me to see my anthropological vocation as a kind of “cosmic diplomacy.” This form of diplomacy is “psychedelic” in so far as its goal is to make manifest the mind, manifesting the nature of sylvan thinking on whose behalf it advocates. Another word for this kind of emergent mind is “spirit.” I here explore alternative “sylvan” means to give voice to the spirits among us, and I trace the challenge this poses for how we should think about what it means to be human.
Eduardo Kohn is the author of the book How Forests Think, which has been translated into several languages. It won the 2014 Gregory Bateson Prize and is short-listed for the upcoming 2018 Prix littéraire François Sommer. His research continues to be concerned with capacitating sylvan thinking in its many forms. He teaches Anthropology at McGill University.
This event is hosted by The Center for the Study of World Religions
This joint presentation examines the theological warrants for the centrality of community for human development and fulfillment. It also provides an ethical analysis of the challenge that economic inequality presents to the creation and maintenance of community, particularly a political community.
The Boston College Center for Christian-Jewish Learning presents this compelling lecture by Professor Susannah Heschel, Eli Black Professor of Jewish Studies at Dartmouth College.
Matt Waldman is Director of the Center for Empathy in International Affairs, Adviser to the UN Special Representative for Somalia, and Associate Fellow of Chatham House – The Royal Institute of International Affairs. He specializes in high-level diplomacy, mediation and negotiation in armed conflict. He has served as an adviser to the UN Special Envoy for Syria (2014-15) and the UN Special Representative for Afghanistan (2011-12). He has also undertaken mediation work in the Middle East and Africa as a Senior Adviser at the European Institute of Peace and Special Adviser to Inter Mediate.
November 2 is the 100th anniversary of the Balfour Declaration, which committed Great Britain to the establishment of a “national home for the Jewish people” in Palestine without consulting the indigenous population. The Alliance for Water Justice in Palestine and The Trans Arab Research Institute are organizing an all-day conference in Cambridge, MA to mark the centenary. Conference speakers will examine how the Zionist Project was implemented in historic Palestine, and consider its long-term consequences for Palestinians, world Jewry, the United States, the United Nations and international law.
Following an afternoon keynote address by Yousef Munayyer, the executive director of the US Campaign for Palestinian Rights, panels will focus on the potential for connecting struggles to build power and the challenges and opportunities of organizing for Palestinian rights in the Age of Trump. Action-oriented workshops will develop many of the themes laid out by panelists: building solidarity campaigns, anti-BDS legislation and how to get involved in changing US policy, the future of Zionism, campus organizing and Israel’s water wars.
The conference is free and open to the public, with a suggested donation at the door of $10 (or more if possible); lunch $5.
The Work That Reconnects, developed by teacher/activist Joanna Macy and others, draws on deep ecology, systems theory, and engaged Buddhism. Practices include group meditations, ritual, conversation in pairs, dance, and song. We will explore spiritual, emotional and intellectual aspects of envisioning and creating a life-sustaining society.
This workshop is facilitated by members of the Boston-area Community of Practice.The event is free but there is a suggested donation of $5-$20.
Dr. Kristen E. Heyer will be exploring the rhetoric and lenses that shape the quickly shifting immigration debate, which can distort complex realities and become surrogates for other cultural and political concerns. This lecture is presented by Boston College School of Continuing Education and School of Theology.
The Religious Literacy Project at Harvard Divinity School has partnered with the American Academy of Religion and Boston College to bring a Shared Studios portal to the Boston area. The portal will be open on the Campus Green with opportunities for HDS community members to join in conversation with displaced peoples in Iraq, Jordan, and Germany via live, full body video connective technology, as if speaking in the same room.
This student run conference will introduce graduate students and the greater Fletcher community to the importance of religious literacy in their professional spheres. The secondary goal is to create a platform for interdisciplinary dialogue between academics and practitioners. We will invite inspiring religious peacebuilders, pragmatic security professionals, culturally aware business leaders, and cutting edge academics to engage with case studies that explore the necessity of religious literacy in their field.
In 2015, the Navajo, Ute, Ute Mountain Ute, Hopi, and Zuni nations came together to protect from natural resource extraction a pristine area they consider sacred. This film by Angelo Baca (Navajo/ Hopi) follows their successful effort to have 1.35 million-acres designated as a National Monument in collaborative management partnership with the Bears Ears Inter-Tribal Coalition. The film is being screened as part of the Women's Studies in Religion Program's Native American Speakers Series. The screening will be followed by a discussion featuring filmmaker Angelo Baca, Harvard Divinity School writer-in-residence Terry Tempest Williams, and former U.S. Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell.
This event is co-sponsored by the HDS Women’s Studies in Religion Program and Religions and the Practice of Peace.
Responsibility to others is a common value across religious traditions and the basis of the international human rights system. We are living in an historic moment in which governments are retreating from commitments to protect and promote the rights of the most vulnerable, including refugees and migrants. In response, individuals and communities around the world are taking action to reaffirm a commitment to basic human rights principles and preserve the gains made by previous generations. Join us for a discussion with Noah Bullock, executive director of Cristosal, a human rights organization based in El Salvador. Bullock will discuss Cristosal’s work on behalf of victims of contemporary and historic human rights violations in the region and strategies for establishing a human rights climate in which peacemaking is possible.
This event is co-sponsored by the HDS Office of Ministry Studies and Religions and the Practice of Peace.
Join the Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School and the Massachusetts Bar Association’s Dispute Resolution Section for the close of Conflict Resolution Week with a special screening of The Peacemaker, a documentary film directed and produced by James Demo.The film is an intimate portrait of Padraig O’Malley, owner of the Plough & Stars bar in Cambridge, author, and UMass Boston professor, who has worked for decades to help divided societies come together. The film takes us from Padraig’s life in Cambridge, Massachusetts, to some of the most dangerous crisis zones on earth – from Northern Ireland to Kosovo, Nigeria to Iraq over five years – as he works with a peacemaking model based on his recovery from addiction. We meet Padraig in the third act of his life in a race against time to find some kind of salvation for both the world and himself. A discussion with James Demo and Padraig O’Malley will follow the screening. Watch the trailer at www.PeacemakerMovie.com.
The Christianity, Race, and Mass Incarceration Conference will gather scholars of various disciplines, activists, organizers, and formerly incarcerated persons and place them in conversation with each other. We hope to advance through this workshop a critical study of carceral punishment, especially as it relates to questions of Christian thought and practice, and to provoke awareness and activism around incarceration in America.
This event is co-sponsored by HDS Dean's Office, the Charles Hamilton Houston Institute for Race & Justice at Harvard Law School, and Religions and the Practice of Peace.
The Mothers for Justice & Equality National Conference is the only national convening of mothers who have experienced loss from street violence, social change-makers, corporate partners and civic leaders. During the two day conference participants from across the country share their successes, gain technical assistance from experts, and build an alliance to lead the change that is needed to end violence in our communities.
The first session of the fourth annual RPP Colloquium dinner series will explore restorative justice, its spiritual dimensions, and the potential contributions of its approach to advancing sustainable peace in our communities and our world. The session will feature presentations by:
- Fania Davis, J.D., PhD, Co-Executive Director, Restorative Justice for Oakland Youth (RJOY), will address “The Spiritual Roots of Restorative Justice: Resources for Cultivating Peace in Our Communities”
sujatha baliga, J.D., Director, Restorative Justice Project; Vice President, Impact Justice; Just Beginnings Fellow, will deliver a talk entitled “Have You Been Angry Long Enough? Faith, Forgiveness, and Restorative Justice.”
The session will be moderated by Elizabeth R. Lee-Hood, PhD candidate in Religion, GSAS, MTS ’96 HDS, AB ’90 College, and RPP Research Associate.
Co-sponsored by the Charles Hamilton Houston Institute for Race and Justice at Harvard Law School, the Prison Studies Project, and the Transformative Justice Series at Harvard Graduate School of Education.
Sunday, May 7, 2017
In collaboration with the newDharma Sangha and Harvard University, we are organizing a group of 40 mindfulness teachers and practitioners to participate in a training to develop organizing tools for mindfulness through practices of meditation, community art, collective reflection, and discussion. Participants will develop and expand on tools to build collective action in their communities through teachings of compassionate practices to promote activism through healing, education about non harm towards the self, others, and the earth. These tools can be taught throughout the greater Boston community and beyond.
Saturday, May 6, 2017
The growing hostility between the US and Russia, North Korea and Iran makes it more urgent to reduce the risk of nuclear war, as do plans to spend a trillion dollars replacing US nuclear weapons by new ones more suited for first-strike. Nuclear war can be triggered on purpose or through miscalculation, terror or error, and this conference aims to advocate and organize toward reducing this danger. It is not an academic conference, but rather one that addresses the political and economic realities of the new Trump administration, and attempts to stimulate and inform the kinds of social movement needed to change national policy. This year we mark the 50th anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s historic “Beyond Vietnam” speech at Riverside Church with a great lineup of inspiring speakers. The conference registration includes lunch.
Thursday, April 20, 2017
Oliver McTernan has been instrumental in facilitating behind-the-scenes dialogue in some of the world's most intractable conflicts. Discover what he has learned through these processes - including major obstacles and possibilities for creating a more peaceful Middle East. Cosponsored by Religions and the Practice of Peace.
Wednesday, April 19, 2017
Disturbing the Peace follows former enemy combatants - including Israeli soldiers from elite units of the Israel Defense Forces and Palestinian rebel fighters - as they work together to challenge the unsustainable status quo of regional relations. The film follows their journeys from soldiers committed to armed battle against each other to finding commonality amongst themselves as participants in the conflict. Disturbing the Peace examines how this unlikely group of individuals have transformed themselves into activists for peace through their work at their jointly formed organization, Combatants for Peace. While focusing on the Middle East peace process, Disturbing the Peace has a universal message, inspiring all of us to become active participants in the creation of peace in our global and local communities. Cosponsored by Religions and the Practice of Peace.
Now, with Ben Ferencz’s work in mind, and writing as the international community prepares to decide whether to activate the ICC jurisdiction over the crime of aggression, the authors in this symposium take stock both of what has been accomplished and of what remains to be done. Building on discussions in 2015 at the Harris Institute, this symposium reflects on broader issues of accountability for the illegal use of force under international law, with the goal of influencing broader scholarly efforts that continue to shape the debate on the scope, nature, and future of the criminalization of the illegal use of force.
This conversation will feature M. Cathleen Kaveny, Rowan Williams, Charles Taylor, and Jonathan Lear. It is sponsored by the Clough Center for Constitutional Democracy and the Boston Univ. Boisi Center for Religion and American Public Life.
How can we connect our movements and reclaim our resources from the destructive forces of defense, “security,” and policing? How is militarism expanding in policing and in our schools? How is it propping up resource extraction abroad and here in the U.S. as at Standing Rock? How can we work to withdraw our consent from these practices and center those that create community control and true community safety and defense?
Massachusetts Peace Action will host a conversation about the real effects of U.S. militarism on our local communities, our society and around the world. Speakers include Maggie Martin and Matt Howard of Iraq Veterans Against the War (IVAW); Mike Prokosch of Dorchester People for Peace; and Didi Delgado and Karlene Griffiths Sekou of Black Lives Matter.
Thursday, April 6, 2017
On April 6th, in partnership with Civic Engagement Fund, we are bringing together fundraisers, community organizers, faith leaders, political professionals, lawyers, and elected officials to discuss the path forward for the progressive political movement. Leaders of progressive organizations will share ideas, speak about their missions, and address how they are converting the energy of community activism into effective political action.
Featuring a keynote address by Rashad Robinson, Executive Director of Color of Change, and remarks by Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal and Victoria Budson, founding Executive Director of the Women and Public Policy Program at the Harvard Kennedy School.
Thursday, April 6, 2017
At a time when the White House proposes to increase military spending by $54 billion while slashing funds for social programs at home and humanitarian aid abroad, we recall the warning of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. that a nation spending more money on the military than on social uplift "is approaching spiritual death." What role can religious communities play today in resisting war and militarism and working for social and economic justice?
This event was cosponsored with the Carr Center for Human Rights Policy at HKS.
Sponsored by The Mahindra Humanities Center Harvard, the Hrant Dink Memorial Peace and Justice Lecture will feature Ayşe Gül Altınay, Sabanci Univ.; Gerard Libaridian, Univ. of Michigan; Etiyen Mahçupyan, Journalist; Malika Zeghal, Harvard to discuss the situation of minorities and human rights in contemporary Turkey.
Refugee Immigration Ministry was founded in 1986 as an Interfaith Ministry whose purpose was to offer Spiritual Care in the detention facilities. As RIM has expanded to other services the collaboration between faith groups has brought volunteers together from many cultures and faiths to provide community-based services to uprooted and often isolated persons. RIM’s participating faith groups include: American Baptist, Buddhist, Episcopal, Hindu, Jewish, Lutheran, Muslim, Roman Catholic, Sikh, Society of Friends, Unitarian Universalist, United Church of Christ, United Methodist, and United Presbyterian.
Lorgia Garcia-Peña (Harvard University), Lisa Lowe (Tufts University), Prerna Lal (East Bay Community Law Center), Keish Kim (Harvard American Studies graduate student), Medhin Paolos (Asmarina Project, and Rete G2 Milano), Maurice Stierl (University of California, Davis) will be leading an important discussion on building sanctuary for undocumented students at this time.
Wednesday, March 29, 3 - 5:00 pm Braun Room, Andover Hall, Harvard Divinity School
Marc Gopin, Director of the Center for World Religions, Diplomacy and Conflict Resolution (CRDC), the James H. Laue Professor at the School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution at George Mason University led an interactive conflict resolution seminar at HDS introducing steps to approaching conflicts today.
Speaker Sheila Katz is author of Connecting with the Enemy: A Century of Palestinian-Israeli Joint Nonviolence (University of Texas Press, 2016), the first comprehensive history of grassroots efforts to forge nonviolent alternatives to the lethal collision of these two national movements. Her first book, Women and Gender in Early Palestinian and Jewish Nationalism (University Press of Florida, 2003), investigates the origins of this conflict through the transformation of gender and national identities during the first half of the 20th century. Before coming to Berklee, she taught at Harvard for eight years where she organized programs on Middle Eastern women. She has published numerous articles and reviews in places such as Kandiyoti’s, Gendering the Middle East, the Arab Studies Journal, the International Journal of Middle East Studies, and Lilith Magazine, among others. Katz holds a Bachelor of Arts from Brandeis University in fine arts (studio and history) and both a master’s degree and a doctorate from Harvard University in Middle East studies.
Professor Sajnani has expertise in the role of the arts in global mental health with an emphasis on theatre practice. Dr. Sajnani hosts an international network on the arts and displacement and is a recipient of the Corann Okorodudu Global Women’s Advocacy Award from the Society for the Psychology of Women from the American Psychological Association. She’s also a Theatre of the Oppressed Trainer and will be doing a training for HDS. The Theater of the Oppressed, established in the early 1970s by Brazilian director and Workers' Party (PT) activist Augusto Boal, is a participatory theater that fosters democratic and cooperative forms of interaction among participants.
Living in the lingering wake of the Idi Amin regime of terror and intolerance, a group of Christian, Jewish and Muslim coffee farmers in the foothills of Mount Elgon in Uganda sought to work collectively to overcome economic hurdles and challenge ingrained religious prejudices. They formed “Delicious Peace” Coffee Cooperative and partnered with a Fair Trade US buyer and roaster, as a result of which their endeavor has been successful. Today, the farmers’ standard of living is improving, peace is flourishing, and their messages of peace and fair wages are spreading to farmers in nearby regions as well as their coffee customers in the United States.
After the movie, join Tuft's Professor and Rabbi Joseph Summit for a talk about his Grammy nominated music compilation, Delicious Peace: Coffee, Music & Interfaith Harmony in Uganda produced by Smithsonian Folkways. The album features music from the interfaith Mirembe Kawomera coffee cooperative in Mbale, Uganda. According to Smithsonian Folkways, the album "aims to overcome religious conflict and bring peace through song and fair trade coffee." He'll talk about his work creating music for social justice and also give us insight into how the coffee cooperative is doing today. Delicious Peace Coffee will be served.
Thursday, March 2, 2017
Recent, interdisciplinary research on religious prosociality confirms that religion helps groups form, thrive, and grow—to include both one’s neighbors and distant strangers. While much contemporary discourse on religion highlights its role in conflict, few features of culture historically have done so much to promote human bonds at a large scale. This discussion considered social scientific research shedding light on religion’s role in advancing cooperation within groups, as well as its complex role in competition and cooperation among groups.
Thursday, January 26, 2017
Gun violence is a critical problem in the United States, daily bringing tragedy to families and communities across the United States. The National Institute of Justice reports that our urban areas, and our youth between the ages of 15 and 24, are most affected. Recent events, including highly-publicized shootings by police, have stimulated increased public discussion of the impact of gun violence on African American communities. In what way can communities respond to the complex challenge of gun violence? What spiritual and human resources might they bring to bear? Join us as we learn from leaders in the Boston area driving inspiring community-based initiatives to address the effects and sources of this local and national problem.
This event was osponsored with the Charles Hamilton Houston Institute for Race and Justice at HLS and the Racial Justice and Healing Initiative at HDS.
Thursday, January 19 - Friday, January 20, 2017
The Religious Literacy Project at HDS in cooperation with Boston University will host a special symposium on religious literacy in humanitarian action. The hope is that the conversations will generate new insights about the role of religious literacy in humanitarian action, the importance of local leadership, and the challenges posed by engaging religion in this field.
The event begins with a plenary panel featuring Alastair Ager, Rudelmar Bueno de Faria, and Azza Karam. It continues with several panel discussions, which will be streamed live on the HDS website. Those who wish to attend should register online. You can also join the conversation on social media using #RLPIHumanAction.
A conversation with Nancy Ammerman of Boston University and Grace Davie of the University of Exeter at Boston University sponsored by Boston Univ. Pardee School of Global Studies Institute on Culture, Religion & World Affairs
Thursday, December 1, 2016
Humanitarian crises affect children disproportionately. Without access to adequate nutrition, housing, healthcare, education, and physical and emotional security, the well-being of an entire generation of children can be lost in the course of responding to and resolving such a crisis. Yet, the particular humanitarian needs and protection of children are often overlooked. Religious communities and organizations, and people informed by religious values, often play a critical role in supporting effective intervention during conflict, and in post-conflict healing, in some cases doing so amidst conflicts that involve issues of religious difference.
This discussion will consider the ongoing case of the Syrian refugee crisis with a lens on the well-being of the children affected by the conflict, and the relevance of religion and religious communities. UNICEF estimates that the total population directly affected by the crisis at the end of 2016 will number 4.7 million, over half of which are children.
Tuesday, November 29th, 2016
This presentation by Eliza Griswold, a Berggruen Fellow at Harvard this year, is the third in a CSWR series on Religion and the Media, organized by Professors Diane Moore and Frank Clooney, CSWR Director.
Monday, November 21, 2016
Donna Hicks, Associate at the Weatherhead Center for International Affairs at Harvard University, presented on this topic as part of the Herbert C. Kelman Seminar on International Conflict Analysis and Resolution.
Co-sponsored by Religions and the Practice of Peace.
At the American Academy of Religion Conference in San Antonio, a panel of distinguished experts and practitioners in the religious peacebuilding field will draw on case studies from Peacemakers in Action: Profiles in Religious Peacebuilding – Volume II (the Tanenbaum Center for Interreligious Understanding) to explore the unique ways in which religious peacebuilders can fit within the peace and diplomacy landscape.
The panelists will look at religiously motivated peacebuilders around the world at different points of conflict cycles and reflect on the strengths and weaknesses of religious peacebuilding in conflict and post-conflict zones, as well as opportunities for the IR field to learn from and incorporate religious peacebuilding.
If you would like to learn more about some of the people involved in this organization, you can read this recent New York Times article about Shifa al-Qudsi, a Palestinian woman who once aspired to be a suicide bomber and now works with Combatants for Peace.
Grassroots relationship building across divides has emerged as a recommendation from scholars, practitioners, and religious peacebuilders in many of our RPP conversations. Whatever may be occurring in US politics and policy, ongoing work by ordinary people to build community across religious, racial, cultural, socioeconomic, and political lines will be crucial for us to move toward a healthy democracy and sustainable peace in this country. While recent political and social turmoil in the US has led to much pain, partisanship, and anger, it also presents an opportunity for individuals and communities in this country to demonstrate and model a more constructive path forward.
Dean David N. Hempton, having proposed in his Memorial Church sermon in October 2015 that we understand this peace work as a spiritual practice, hosted this reflective, forward-looking conversation.
Thursday, November 10th, 2016
You're invited to a very special evening with visiting artists from The Sanctuaries in Washington, D.C., the nation's first racially and spiritually diverse arts community. Take a break from the busyness of life and experience firsthand the artistry, soulfulness, and vision that has attracted national media attention from CBS News, the Huffington Post, and the New York Times.
You'll also hear about a brand new program called "The Collective" that mobilizes the next generation of multicultural artists working on the front lines of justice movements. Join other local artists, activists, entrepreneurs, and philanthropists to explore how this program could support existing efforts and address unmet needs for arts activism in Boston
Daniel Shapiro, Ph.D., is founder and director of the Harvard International Negotiation Program, associate professor in psychology at Harvard Medical School/McLean Hospital, and affiliate faculty at the Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School.
Ambassador Marriet Schuurman, NATO Special Representative for Women, Peace and Security, will be the keynote speaker for the conference.
Harvard Divinity School is proud to present a screening of the film and a panel discussion placing the Sharps’ efforts in a larger historical context of modern refugee crises.
Panelists include Artemis Joukowsky, HDS professor Kevin Madigan, Amber Moulton of the Unitarian Universalist Service Committee, and Sana Mustafa, an activist and Syrian refugee. It will be moderated by HDS professor Dan McKanan.
Tuesday, October 25, 2016
Prophecy has two duties: it must imagine the future and it must offer a choice, the warning contingent on human moral agency. In this world, and at this time, the duty of prophecy is not theoretical, for humanity faces a stark reality, one that is already beginning to unfold. Climate change threatens the world of stability that undergirds all institutions, all texts, and all practices. While a drastically changed climate is a new challenge in science and policy, the drama of drought and refugees is not a new problem in religious texts or traditions. The biblical account of creation sends humans into a chancy world; the famines that drive the biblical narrative send populations sweeping across the Middle East, in a land promised, but fragile. As our world begins to shift under the burden of a dramatically warming climate, it is the duty of prophecy – to imagine and to warn – that animates both science and theology. Hosted by Boston College, Laurie Zoloth of Northwestern University will speak on this topic.
Friday, October 14th, 2016
A celebration of the anniversary of the Inaugural Women’s Assembly at the 2015 Parliament of the World’s Religions and a year of inspirational action for women’s spirituality, dignity and human rights.
Thursday, October 6, 2016
Leymah Gbowee, 2011 Nobel Peace Laureate, is a Liberian peace activist, trained social worker, and women’s rights advocate. Leymah’s leadership of the Women of Liberia Mass Action for Peace – which brought together Christian and Muslim women in a nonviolent movement that played a pivotal role in ending Liberia’s civil war in 2003 – is chronicled in her memoir, Mighty Be Our Powers (2011), and in the award-winning documentary, Pray the Devil Back to Hell (2008). She is founder and current President of the Gbowee Peace Foundation Africa. She was the founding head of the Liberian Reconciliation Initiative, and was the co-Founder and former Executive Director of Women Peace and Security Network Africa (WIPSEN-A). She is also a founding member and former Liberia Coordinator of Women in Peacebuilding Network/West Africa Network for Peacebuilding (WIPNET/WANEP). Leymah is currently named a Distinguished Activist-in-Residence at Union Theological Seminary. She travels internationally to advocate for human rights and peace & security.
Thursday, October 6th, 2016
Around the Table is a monthly lunchtime gathering exploring how a specific topic is understood, complicated, ritualized, integrated, and lived in different religious and spiritual communities. Each gathering features brief presentations by two HDS students and an invitation for those in attendance to explore the same topic from the perspectives of the wisdom and traditions with which they identify most strongly. This month's topic is peacemaking. Student presenters are Sana Saeed, MDiv candidate, and River Olsen, MDiv candidate.
RPP Colloquium and Pluralism Project 25th Anniversary Event: Speaking the Sikh Experience: Visible Difference in the Crucible of Change
Thursday, September 22, 2016
Sarbpreet Singh is a playwright, commentator, poet, and the founder and director of the Gurmat Sangeet Project, a non-profit dedicated to the preservation of traditional Sikh music.
J. Mehr Kaur is a graduate of Smith College with a B.A. in theatre with an emphasis in directing. Recent projects include Sara Ruhl’s Orlando, 'Water by the Spoonful' by Quiara Alegria Hudes in Northampton's 460-seat Theatre 14, and 'SEVEN: A documentary play' presented as part of Hillary Clinton's 2014 Women in Public Service Institute.
Mr. Singh and Ms. Kaur were joined by the actors Benjamin Gutman, Sydney Grant, Monica Giordano, and Michelle Finston, who performed an excerpt from Mr. Singh’s play Kultar’s Mime.
Wednesday, September 21st, 2016 - Friday, September 23, 2016
To mark its 25th anniversary, the Pluralism Project brought together scholars and practitioners who are shaping the conversation about religious diversity and interfaith engagement - both for today and for tomorrow. This interdisciplinary conference, “Pluralism Project @ 25: Diversity and Inclusion in the American Crucible,” explored the many dilemmas and decisions we face as individuals, professionals, and as citizens in an increasingly diverse world.
Wednesday, September 21, 2016
Thursday, May 5, 2016
Hind Kabawat, director of Interfaith Peacebuilding, George Mason University’s Center for World Religions Diplomacy & Conflict Resolution, and Tanenbaum Peacemaker in Action.
Joyce Dubensky, Tanenbaum CEO.
Friday, April 29, 2016
Professor Robert Mnookin and Professor James Sebenius moderate a discussion with Former United States Senator, Recipient of the Great Negotiator Award and Former US Special Envoy for Middle East Peace George Mitchell.
Thursday, April 28, 2016
A performance by Guila Clara Kessous, UNESCO Artist for Peace.
Selections of verses, poems, and prayers from the three Abrahamic religions that convey coexistence, respect, and peace.
Thursday, April 14, 2016
Dr. Marc Gopin, Director of the Center for World Religions, Diplomacy and Conflict Resolution (CRDC), the James H. Laue Professor at the School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution at George Mason University, presents “The Ethical and Spiritual Foundations of Judaic Conflict Resolution Practice and Peacebuilding: A Thirty Year Journey.”
Dr. Elizabeth H. Prodromou, Visiting Associate Professor, Program in Negotiation & Conflict Resolution, The Fletcher School of Law & Diplomacy, Tufts University, presents "Orthodox Christianity, Humanitarianism, and Peacebuilding: Crisis, Sustainability, Human Security."
Social Justice and Governance in Islam
Wednesday, April 13, 2016
Alwaleed Bin Talal Islamic Studies Program
Deina Abdelkader, Associate Professor in the Political Science department of the University of Massachusetts, Lowell, member of the Islamic Jurisprudential Council of North America (Fiqh Council of North America), editorial board member of Digest of Middle East Studies and co-director of the International Relations-Islamic Studies Research cohort (COIRIS).
Monday, April 11, 2016
Dr. Diane Moore, Director of the Religious Literacy Project and Senior Lecturer on Religious Studies and Education at Harvard University gives a keynote presentation, with workshops and panels to follow.
Monday, April 11, 2016
Besa: The Promise presents a story that bridges generations and religions, uniting fathers and sons, Muslims and Jews. The movie's producer Jason Williams and a Jewish survivor of the Nazi persecution in Albania, Johanna Neumann, in conversation with Professor Ali Asani, Director of the Alwaleed Islamic Studies Program.
Saturday, April 9, 2016
The Charles Hamilton Houston Institute for Race and Justice presents an event to work with students, professionals, activists and Boston residents to find solutions for common issues communities of color in Boston experience.
Friday, April 8, 2016
Alondra Nelson, Professor at Columbia University and Author of The Social Life of DNA: Race, Reparations, and Reconciliation after the Genome offers a keynote address followed by additional esteemed speakers at the Fourth Annual Roma Conference hosted by the FXB Center for Health and Human Rights and Mahindra Humanities Center.
Friday, April 8, 2016
Martha Nussbaum and Miroslav Volf, as well as the Washington Post’s Mike Gerson and U.K. House of Lords Peer Sayeeda Warsi are some of the scholars speaking during this daylong symposium held at the Berkley Center for Religion, Peace, and World Affairs at Georgetown University.
Harvard Graduate Council's Leadership in a Time of Crisis Conference
Friday, April 8, 2016
Jeff Seul, Lecturer on the Practice of Peace at HDS, Hugh O'Doherty, Lecturer on Conflict Resolution at the Jepson School of Leadership Studies and Jairek Robbins, a Motivational Speaker and recipient of the Congressional Award, are only a few of many panelists that offer TEDtalks, panel discussions, and problem-solving scenarios during the Harvard Graduate Council's sixth annual Leadership Conference.
April 7, 2016
Madeleine Albright, former U.S. secretary of state and author of The Mighty and the Almighty: Reflections on America, God, and World Affairs (2016) delivers a keynote address at the Berkley Center for Religion, Peace, and World Affairs at Georgetown University.
Thursday, April 7, 2016
Through Interfaith Youth Core's (IFYC) student organizers, classmates and neighbors come together to amplify the importance of interfaith cooperation.
Economic Prosperity for Peace: Student Club Conference at Harvard Business School
Sunday, April 3, 2016
Exploring the role that the private sector can play in building and promoting economic prosperity for Arabs and Israelis alike as a catalyst for regional stability and cooperation.
Thursday, March 31 to Friday, April 1, 2016
Winona LaDuke of the White Earth Land Recovery Project, and Nigel Savage of Hazon, offer keynote addresses for the "Spirit of Sustainable Agriculture" conference.
Thursday, March 31, 2016
The Armor of Light follows the journey of an Evangelical minister trying to find the courage to preach about the growing toll of gun violence in America. Speakers include Abigail Disney, an award-winning filmmaker, philanthropist, and the CEO and president of Fork Films, Reverend Rob Schenck, the film’s protagonist, an Evangelical minister and founder of the Christian outreach organization Faith and Action, based in Washington, DC and Iris Bohnet, Professor of Public Policy and the director of the Women and Public Policy Program at the Harvard Kennedy School.
American Empire and the Muslim Experience: Inflicting Violence Through International and Domestic Law
Monday, March 28, Tuesday, March 29, and Friday, April 1, 2016
Join the Harvard Muslim Law Students Association for its first annual symposium examining how US laws and policies, deployed both domestically and abroad, shape the American Muslim experience.
Monday, March 28, 2016
Father Patrick Devine, founder and executive director of the Shalom Center, an interfaith NGO in Nairobi, Kenya, winner of the 2013 International Caring Award.
RPP Colloquium: Transforming Racialized Divides in the US: Insights from the African-European American Experience
Thursday, March 24, 2016
Dr. Leah Gunning Francis, Associate Dean of Contextual Education, Assistant Professor of Christian Education, Eden Theological Seminary, and author of Ferguson and Faith: Sparking Leadership and Awakening Community, and Rev. Dr. David Anderson Hooker, member of Staff Collective, JustPeace, The United Methodist Church’s Center for Conflict Transformation, and a minister for Local and Global Missions, First Congregational Church (UCC) in Atlanta, Georgia, and co-author of Transforming Historical Harms and the forthcoming Little Book of Transformative Community Conferencing.
Challenges to the Syria Peace Talks in Geneva: How Local Governance and the War Economy Shape the Prospects for International Diplomacy
Thursday, March 24, 2016
Omar Abdulaziz Hallaj, co-coordinator of the Syria Project at the Common Space Initiative in Beirut.
Religion and Diplomacy: How Faith Impacts Conflict and Conflict Resolution in the Twenty-first Century
Wednesday, March 23, 2016
Alumnus Shaun Casey, MDiv '83, ThD '98, the U.S. Special Representative for Religion and Global Affairs under Secretary of State John Kerry.
Thursday, March 10, 2016
The Edmond J. Safra Center for Ethics co-hosts a discussion (in collaboration with the Harvard Negotiation and Mediation Clinical Program at Harvard Law School) following the play "There Is A Field," written and produced by Jen Marlowe.
Tuesday, February 23, 2016
Rev. Dr. Septemmy Lakawa (Jakarta Theological Seminary), WSRP 2015–16 Research Associate and Visiting Assistant Professor of Women's Studies and Theology.
Thursday, February 18, 2016
Ven. Bhikkhu Bodhi, chair of Buddhist Global Relief, and president of the Buddhist Association of the United States (BAUS), and Dr. Julie A. Nelson, Professor of Economics at the University of Massachusetts Boston, Senior Research Fellow with the Global Development and Environment Institute at Tufts University, and a Dharma teacher in the Boundless Way Zen school.
Beyond the Headlines: Understanding and Misunderstanding Islam
Islam and the Practice of Peace Lecture Series
Herbert C. Kelman Seminar on International Conflict Analysis and Resolution
Wednesday, February 17, 2016
Ali S. Asani, Professor of Indo-Muslim and Islamic Religion and Cultures, Harvard University, Director, Prince Alwaleed bin Talal Program in Islamic Studies at Harvard University and Jeff Seul, Lecturer on the Practice of Peace, Harvard Divinity School, Chairman, Peace Appeal Foundation, Partner, Holland & Knight.
What is Islamic in the Islamic State?
Tuesday, February 16, 2016
Jocelyne Cesari, Chair of Religion and Politics, University of Birmingham, UK; Senior research fellow, Georgetown University’s Berkley Center on Religion, Peace and World Affairs; Visiting Professor of Religion and Politics and Associate, Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Islamic Studies Program, director, interfaculty program Islam in the West, Harvard University.
Friday, February 12, 2016
Nobel Peace Laureate Leymah Gbowee presents a master class in the morning. Register online.
Fear into Fortitude: Interfaith Peacebuilding Lessons from Liberia
Thursday, February 11, 2016
Nobel Peace Laureate Leymah Gbowee, leader of the interfaith women's peace movement that helped bring an end to Liberia's civil war, speaks at Northeastern University in Boston.
Monday, February 1 to Sunday, February 7, 2016
Officially declared by the United Nations in 2010, World Interfaith Harmony Week celebrates the Two Commandments of "Love of God, and Love of the Neighbor," joining them with "Love of the Good, and Love of the Neighbor" to include all people of goodwill. It offers an opportunity every year for interfaith groups and other groups of goodwill to share their activities for peace, tolerance, and mutual understanding with one another and with the world. It seeks to raise awareness of cooperative interfaith activities, to spread the message of interfaith harmony and goodwill in places of worship, and to promote dialogue, learning, engagement, and collaboration to advance cultures of peace around the globe. In the spirit of fostering world interfaith harmony, we invite you to attend one of the upcoming events below at Harvard on religions and peace practice in the month of February.
RPP Colloquium: Integral Human Development and the Moral Imagination: Implications for Religion, Development, and Peacebuilding
Thursday, January 28, 2016
R. Scott Appleby, PhD, professor of history and Marilyn Keough, Dean of Notre Dame’s Keough School of Global Affairs, Notre Dame.
Thursday, January 26, 2016
Waking in Oak Creek is a film about community responses after the 2012 Sikh temple shooting in Oak Creek, Wisconsin. Followed by panel discussion with filmmaker Patrice O'Neill and subjects Pardeep Kaleka and Arno Michaelis. Dr. Diana L. Eck, director of the Pluralism Project, will moderate.
Islam and Peaceful Coexistence: Conflict or Conciliation
Islam and the Practice of Peace Lecture Series
Friday, December 11, 2015
Imam Dr. Muhammad Nurayn Ashafa, Co-Executive Director, Interfaith Mediation Centre, Kaduna, Nigeria.
RPP Colloquium: The Pastor and the Imam from Nigeria: Interfaith Strategy for Peacebuilding: Prospects and Challenges
Thursday, December 10, 2015
Pastor Dr. James Movel Wuye and Imam Dr. Muhammad Nurayn Ashafa, Co-Executive Directors of the Interfaith Mediation Centre in Kaduna, Nigeria.
RPP Colloquium: Bridging the Religious Divide: Transforming Conflict When Emotions and Religion are at Play
Thursday, November 19, 2015
Dr. Daniel L. Shapiro, founder and director of the Harvard International Negotiation Program, associate professor of Psychology (HMS), and Rev. Dr. Septemmy E. Lakawa, of Jakarta Theological Seminary in Indonesia, current Research Associate and Visiting Assistant Professor of Women's Studies and Theology with the Women's Studies in Religion Program.
Thursday, November 12, 4 pm, Memorial Church
The Weatherhead Center for International Affairs and the Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Islamic Studies Program warmly welcome you to the Samuel L. and Elizabeth Jodidi Lecture, delivered by His Highness the Aga Khan, on "Challenges to Pluralism and Cosmopolitanism Today."
Thursday, November 5, 2015
Rod Owens, MDiv candidate, is a student of Buddhist studies in which he focuses on the integration of Buddhism and anti-oppression work. He is also an authorized lama in the Kagyu School of Tibetan Buddhism.
Saturday, October 24, 2015
12th Annual Ikeda Forum for Intercultural Dialogue
Monday, October 19, 2015
Dr. Richard Grounds, executive director of the Euchee/Yuchi Language Project, delivers this year's Dana McLean Greeley Lecture for Peace and Social Justice.
Salt Lake City
Thursday, October 15–19, 2015
Islam and the Practice of Peace Lecture Series
Thursday, October 15, 2015
Dr. Nathan C. Funk, associate professor of Peace and Conflict Studies, Conrad Grebel University College, University of Waterloo, Ontario, Canada; co-author of Islam and Peacemaking in the Middle East and Peace and Conflict Resolution in Islam: Precept and Practice.
The Other as Your Brother: Inter-faith Understanding & the Path to Peacemaking in the Holy Land
Tuesday, October 13, 2015, 7:30 pm
MIT, Building W11-190 (Religious Activities Center, Main Dining Room), corner of Massachusetts Ave. and Amherst St. (near the chapel & student center), Cambridge.
When Religion Is a Force for Peace
Three events with representatives of the Abrahamic reunion from the Holy Land.
Sunday, October 11, 2015
11:15 am: Good Shepherd Presbyterian Church, 701 Foundry Street, Easton, MA
7:00 pm: Temple Kol Tikva, 9 Dunbar Street, Sharon, MA
Lunch with Bassem Tamimi and Marshall Ganz
Wednesday, October 7, 2015
12th Annual Ikeda Forum for Intercultural Dialogue
Agape’s Annual St. Francis Day
Saturday, October 3, 2015
Saturday, October 2, 2015
Tuesday, September 22, 2015
Researchers from the KAICIID Dialogue Centre, based in Vienna, discusses the first phase of their Peace Mapping Programme, an effort to map interreligious dialogue activities around the word and assess their collective impact on peacebuilding.
Thursday, September 24, 2015
Rev. Susan Hayward, Director, Religion and Inclusive Societies, U.S. Institute of Peace; HDS ’07 graduate; co-editor, Women, Religion, and Peacebuilding: Illuminating the Unseen (USIP Press, 2015).
Summit Dates: Friday, June 5– Tuesday, June 9, 2015
Global Unites convenes over 30 youth peacebuilders from 15 countries and Sri Lanka for an intensive five-day summit. The summit is a "training-camp" for movement builders and include interactive workshops, activities, and keynote lectures. It also serves as the formal launch of the Global Unites movement. The delegates are inspired, connected, and equipped to be more effective in youth-led conflict transformation and to create national-level movements. Delegates selected for the summit are fully funded. For more information, visit www.globalunites.org or email Tajay Bongsa (Harvard Divinity School student).
The Problem with Prayer
Thursday, May 7, 2015
"This One Time..." a monthly Interfaith Storytelling series, invites you to listen, share, and dialogue about stories of interfaith encounter. For more info, contact Usra Ghazi at email@example.com.
"This One Time..." a monthly Interfaith Storytelling series, invites you to listen, share, and dialogue about stories of interfaith encounter. For more info, contact Usra Ghazi at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Sri Lanka and Myanmar: Religion and Institutions of Civil Society in Conflict and Peacebuilding
Religions and the Practice of Peace Colloquium
Wednesday, April 22, 2015
- Charles Hallisey, senior lecturer on Buddhist Literatures, Harvard Divinity School (HDS); former president of the American Institute for Sri Lankan Studies
- Madhawa Palihapitiya, associate director, Massachusetts Office of Public Collaboration, University of Massachusetts Boston
- Jeffrey R. Seul, chairman, Peace Appeal Foundation
- With remarks by: Tajay Bongsa, special student, HDS; Buddhist monk; executive committee member, Global Unites
- Discussant: Daniel L. Shapiro, founder and director, Harvard International Negotiation Program; associate professor of Psychology, Harvard Medical School/McLean Hospital; affiliate faculty, Program on Negotiation, Harvard Law School
Alwaleed Annual Conference
Intra-Muslim Relations: Contemporary Trends in Contexts
Saturday, April 11–Sunday, April 12, 2015
The conference convenes scholars, activists, religious leaders, artists, educators, and conflict-resolution experts who offer their thoughts on and analyses of contemporary trends in intra-Muslim relations.
Two special events with Haji Syed Salman Chishty
Gaddi Nashin of the Ajmer Sharif Dargah in India and Director of the Chishty Foundation
"The Chishty Philosophy of Love: A Living Tradition of Spiritual Ethics in Service of Humanity"
A lecture with Haji Syed Salman Chishty.
Tuesday, April 7, 2015
"Sulh e Kul: Peace to All with Love from Ajmer Sharif"
A film screening and conversation with Haji Syed Salman Chishty.
Wednesday, April 8, 2015
Watch video: April 2015 conversation with Haji Syed Salman Chishty
The Chishty Sufi order has been sharing the message of "Love Toward All, Malice Toward None" in South Asia and around the globe through its legacy of service to the needy and promotion of tolerance and harmony since its establishment in India in the 12th century CE by Sufi saint Hazrat Khawaja Moinuddin Chishty, popularly known as "Khawaja Gharib Nawaz" ("Patron of the Poor"). For over 800 years, his shrine in Ajmer, India, has been a place of pilgrimage for millions of people from all backgrounds.
The message of the Chishty order and its contributions to a culture of tolerance and unity in the region were honored in 2012 at the United Nations at a celebration and seminar on "Unlearning Intolerance" sponsored by India's Permanent Mission to the UN and UN Academic Impact.
Sponsored by the Alwaleed Islamic Studies Program and the Committee on the Study of Religion.
Monday, April 6, 2015
The Harvard Divinity School (HDS) Student Association officers invite all HDS students to consider revising and submitting a paper for presentation at the annual Stendahl Symposium: Conversations Across Religious Boundaries.
The Stendahl Symposium is an annual HDS tradition in memory of former professor Krister Stendahl, who tirelessly sought to repair fractions between Jews and Christians, supported the ordination of women, and pushed for the full inclusion and participation of women and minority voices in academia and interfaith work.
- Usra Ghazi, Masters of Theological Studies (MTS) candidate, Harvard Divinity School (HDS) presents: "Interfaith Youth Core's theory of change on interfaith engagement, Harvard Kennedy School (HKS) and narrative as a tool for leadership development and community mobilization, and prospects for international interfaith research"
- Benjamin Marcus, MTS candidate, HDS presents: “Engaged religious literacy education learning through the lens of lived religion"
- Elizabeth Breit, Masters of Divinity (MDiv) candidate, HDS presents: "Mediation: Facilitative listening through conflict, and the HLS Harvard Mediation Program"
- Angela Thurston, MDiv candidate, HDS presents: "Harvard-wide approaches to leadership education and making HDS a spiritual hub for the University"
- Alia Braley, MDiv candidate, HDS presents: "HDS Field Education in nonviolent strategy: CANVAS and the Albert Einstein Institute"
- Daniel L. Shapiro, founder and director, Harvard International Negotiation Program; associate professor of psychology, Harvard Medical School/McLean Hospital; affiliate faculty, Program on Negotiation, Harvard Law School presents: "Transcending conflict: a practical approach to cosmic conflict"
Second Annual Harvard Law School Interfaith Conference
Friday, March 27, 2015
Panels include "Community Healing in Light of Ferguson, Staten Island, Cleveland, and Elsewhere," "Restorative Justice and Alternative Punishment," and "Faith and Conscience in Legal Practice."
Organized by the Catholic Law Students Association, Christian Fellowship, Jewish Law Students Association, Latter-day Saints Student Association, and Muslim Law Students Association.
On (Un)Common Ground: Agreeing to Disagree
Thursday, March 26, 2015
"This One Time..." a monthly Interfaith Storytelling series, invites you to listen, share, and dialogue about stories of interfaith encounter. For more info, contact Usra Ghazi at email@example.com.
Sunday, March 22, 2015
Wednesday, February 25, 2015
- Donna Hicks, associate, Weatherhead Center for International Affairs, Harvard University; chair, Herbert C. Kelman Seminar on International Conflict; author, Dignity: The Essential Role it Plays in Resolving Conflict (2011)
- Yakir Englander, visiting lecturer in Women's Studies and Judaism and research associate, Women’s Studies in Religion Program (WSRP), Harvard Divinity School (HDS); vice president, Kids4Peace International
- Yousef Bashir, Palestinian from Gaza; master’s candidate, Program in Co-existence and Conflict, Heller School for Social Policy and Management, Brandeis University
- Jennifer S. Leath, visiting lecturer in Women’s Studies and Religious Ethics and research associate, Women’s Studies in Religion Program (WSRP), Harvard Divinity School (HDS); religious ethics and the African diaspora
- Rod Owens, Masters of Divinity (MDiv) candidate in Buddhist Ministry, HDS
- Anila Daulatzai, visiting assistant professor in Women’s Studies and Islamic Studies and WSRP research associate, HDS; socio-cultural anthropologist, Afghanistan and Pakistan
- Melissa W. Bartholomew, MDiv candidate, HDS; co-founder, Women United for Peace through Prayer
Sunday, February 1– Saturday, February 7, 2015
Officially declared by the United Nations in 2010, World Interfaith Harmony Week celebrates the Two Commandments of "Love of God, and Love of the Neighbor," joining them with "Love of the Good, and Love of the Neighbor" to include all people of goodwill. It offers an opportunity every year for interfaith groups and other groups of goodwill to share their activities for peace, tolerance, and mutual understanding with one another and with the world. It seeks to raise awareness of cooperative interfaith activities, to spread the message of interfaith harmony and goodwill in places of worship, and to promote dialogue, learning, engagement, and collaboration to advance cultures of peace around the globe.
Harvard Divinity School and Harvard University celebrated World Interfaith Harmony Week from February 1–7, 2015 with events around campus aimed at promoting interfaith dialogue and understanding including:
Promoting the Practice of Peace in the 21st Century: Mobilizing Our Resources as Global Citizens, Religious Communities, and Universities
Tuesday, February 3, 2015
HDS, Sperry Room, Andover Hall, 45 Francis Avenue, Cambridge
The event included remarks by Dean David N. Hempton and MDiv candidate Melissa Bartholomew, a film screening of Pray the Devil Back to Hell (2008), and a dinner dialogue and discussion moderated by Melissa Bartholomew and Professor Diana L. Eck.
Jewish Perspectives on Living in a Multifaith World
Thursday, February 5, 2015
Rabb Hall, Harvard Hillel, 52 Mt. Auburn Street Cambridge
How does Judaism view religious practice and identity in a multicultural and multifaith world? Harvard Hillel’s own Rabbi Getzel Davis leads this session that is open to everyone—no prior knowledge of Judaism or Jewish texts will be needed.
Saturday, January 31, 2015
A public talk with Donna Hicks, PhD, Associate, Weatherhead Center for International Affairs at Harvard University.
Religions and the Practice of Peace Colloquium
Wednesday, January 28, 2015
Rosalind I.J. Hackett, Trelawney Grenfell-Muir, Melissa W. Bartholomew, and Anila Daulatzai discuss the role of religious and spiritual resources in women's multifaceted contributions to sustainable peace and the challenges and promise of women's engagement. Opening remarks by Ann D. Braude and Q&A moderated by Dean David N. Hempton.
Home Sweet Home: Stories of Inherited and Adopted Family
Thursday, December 11, 2014
Wednesday, December 10, 2014
- Anne Monius, professor of South Asian Religions, Harvard Divinity School (HDS)
- Leslie Hubbard, MDiv candidate, HDS; former Buddhist nun in the tradition of Thich Nhat Hanh
- With remarks by: Janet Gyatso, Professor of Buddhist Studies and Associate Dean, HDS; Joseph Lumbard, assistant professor of classical Islam, Brandeis University; and Elizabeth Lee-Hood, doctoral candidate in the study of religion and Islam, Harvard University
Religious Literacy in Dialogue at Harvard (student-led course)
Fall semester: Tuesday, September 9– Tuesday, December 2, 2014
This is a non credit-bearing, application only, semester-long undertaking meant to deepen participants’ understanding of what it means to be religiously literate. In the course, religious literacy refers to both an understanding of core concepts (including theology, doctrine, scriptural narrative, social values, religious community, and personal religious experience) as well as a facility with skills related to independent learning and analysis. The class explores the ways religion intersects with crosscutting themes related to the self and society.
Wednesday, November 19, 2014
President Jimmy Carter comes to Harvard to discuss his latest book, A Call to Action: Women, Religion, Violence, and Power.
A Call to Action urges the end of discrimination and abuse against women, calling it the number one challenge in the world today. The book builds on the work of faith leaders and courageous human rights defenders who met in 2013 at The Carter Center to mobilize faith groups worldwide to commit to advancing women’s rights. Religion, they said, should be a force for equality and human dignity not oppression.
Northern Ireland: From Conflict to Peace to Reconciliation?
Religions and the Practice of Peace Colloquium
Wednesday, November 12, 2014
In light of their experiences and research in Northern Ireland, Trelawney Grenfell-Muir, Fr. Raymond Helmick, Dean David N. Hempton of HDS, Hugh O'Doherty, and Margaret Smith discuss the shift from violent conflict to peace agreement, the need for progress toward a more thoroughgoing and sustainable peace rooted in reconciliation, the positive contributions and potential of religious resources, and recommendations.
Friday, November 7, 2014
"Spiritual and Sustainable: Religion Responds to Climate Change" is an interfaith conference focused on addressing the issues and challenges of maintaining a sustainable planet. Focusing on ways to engage, this conference will respond to the overlapping moral issues of climate change, sustainability, social justice, and mindfulness through the lenses of many of the world's religious traditions. Pre-registration is required.
Friday, November 7, 2014
Conversations with Pir Zia Inayat Khan and Venerable Tenzin Priyadarshi at MIT.
Friday, October 31, 2014
Jerry White, US Deputy Assistant Secretary of State
Jerry White has over twenty-five years’ experience leading change-making campaigns to prevent mass destruction and increase civilian security worldwide. A social entrepreneur and senior Ashoka Fellow, White has helped train next-generation leadership in scores of countries to transform highly contentious issues into opportunities to unify communities, generate jobs and build stability and hope.
Thursday, October 30, 2014
Based on 18 months of field work in Israel and the West Bank, Lihi Ben Shitrit provides an inside view of the surprising political activism of women from both Jewish and Muslim conservative religious groups. Lihi Ben Shitrit is Assistant Professor in the School of Public and International Affairs at the University of Georgia. Her book Righteous Transgressions is forthcoming from Princeton University Press. Registration is required.
History and Horizons of the Field
Religions and the Practice of Peace Colloquium
Friday, October 29, 2014
Diana L. Eck, Professor of Comparative Religion and Indian Studies at Harvard Divinity School (HDS), Jeffrey R. Seul, MTS '97, partner at Holland & Knight and chairman for Peace Appeal Foundation, and Marshall Ganz, Senior Lecturer in Public Policy at Harvard Kennedy School of Government, discuss the field of religions and peacebuilding—its history, the need for its further development, and its importance in our contemporary world—and offer recommendations for future directions. Welcome and introductions by Dean David N. Hempton.
Religious Pluralism and Pragmatic Governance: The Mediterranean Experience During Fatimid Muslim Rule
Wednesday, October 22, 2014
This lecture examines Fatimid Shia Ismaili Muslim governance and its impact on the medieval Mediterranean world of the 10th-11th centuries—a region inhabited by people from diverse ethnic backgrounds and religious persuasions. During their two and a half century rule (909-1171 CE), the Fatimid rulers, known as Imam-caliphs, developed a model of governance recognized both in medieval and modern times for its inclusivity. Christians and Jews participated actively in imperial administration and non-Shia Muslims were not compelled to adopt a Shia Ismaili interpretation of Islam. The lecture debates the extent to which Fatimid policy was the result of the interplay between doctrinal commitments and their lived experience, tempered by local conditions and communal dynamics. It focuses on how Fatimid governance was articulated and evolved over the course of the dynasty’s rule, and how salient Fatimid figures conceived the relationship between the ruler and subject. It concludes with observations on whether the Fatimid model of governance led to a distinctive relationship between the Imam-caliphs and their non-Muslim constituencies.
Tuesday, October 21, 2014
This presentation is part of a series co-sponsored by the Office of Religious and Spiritual Life and the Harvard Divinity School (HDS) Student Association, Practicing Divinity: HDS Students Sharing Wisdom on Spiritual Practices, consisting of four, one-hour informal lunchtime presentations/workshops.
The series features HDS students sharing some of their expertise, research, and wisdom about a particular spiritual practice with other students, faculty, and staff, and each presentation briefly highlights a different spiritual practice.
Monday, October 20, 2014
Katherine Jansen, Catholic University of America, discusses her most recent research Christianity in Medieval Rome.
This lecture, a piece of a larger book-length project entitled The Practice of Peace in Late Medieval Italy, places medieval dispute resolution practice in its religious context. Examining preachers, sermons, and the peace movements they inspired, the paper shows how the penitential culture of the later Middle Ages informed the theory and practice of dispute settlement in late medieval Italy. Through ritual analysis and visual evidence, the paper also builds a case for how peace-making was imagined and commemorated.
Constructing a Narrative of Reconciliation: A Personal Plea for Transformation of the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict
Thursday, October 9, 2014
With Herbert C. Kelman, Richard Clarke Cabot Professor of Social Ethics Emeritus and Co-Chair of the Middle East Seminar, Harvard University.
CEDAR: Communities Engaging with Difference and Religion
Thursday, October 2, 2014
The Religion and Conflict Transformation Program at Boston University presents a lecture by Adam Seligman as part of their Interfaith Engagement Series.
This talk provides an overview of CEDAR—Communities Engaging with Difference and Religion—and its 12 years of programming in different countries, and will present the pedagogy and philosophy behind the program. Emphasis is placed on issues of communal boundaries, moral credit and the collective nature of knowledge. Dr. Seligman helps us understand just what engaging with difference may mean, as an alternative to the many efforts of "finding common ground" or a "shared humanity" that define so many intercommunal and interreligious initiatives. We discuss the role of discomfort in learning and the importance of experience as opposed to book knowledge in the maturing of our moral consciousness.
An Interfaith Partnership for Peace: The Imam and the Pastor in Nigeria
Religions and the Practice of Peace Colloquium
Tuesday, September 30, 2014
Darren Kew discusses the role of religion in the transformation of Imam Muhammad Ashafa and Pastor James Wuye from rival youth militant leaders to interfaith peacemakers and their subsequent conflict transformation and peacebuilding work in Nigeria and beyond. Welcome by Dean David N. Hempton and introduction by Diana L. Eck.
Darren Kew is Associate Professor and Chair of the Department of Conflict Resolution, Human Security, and Global Governance and executive director of the Center for Peace, Democracy, and Development at University of Massachusetts Boston.
Refiguring American Jewish Identity through Solidarity with Palestinians: A Relational Approach to Religious Innovation
Tuesday, September 16, 2014
Based on in-depth interviews with Jewish Palestine solidarity activists and systematic study of Jewish solidarity movement social media, Atalia Omer demonstrates how refiguring alternative Jewish meanings of rituals, practices, and texts may emerge from contesting Jewish nationalism and Israeli occupation policies, through solidarity with Palestinians.
Watch video: September 2014 Lecture on American Jewish Identity
Read the Q&A with Atalia Omer
Religion and the Promotion of Peace in the 21st Century
Thursday, May 1, 2014
Dean David N. Hempton addressed the Harvard Alumni Association. His talk, attended by over 200 alumni leaders from across the University, focused on the ways that “religious resources—from members of religious communities to institutions and networks; and from theological and ethical ideas to spiritual practices—can play powerful roles in inspiring and sustaining efforts for peace."
Listen to audio: May 2014 Address by Dean David N. Hempton to the Harvard Alumni Association
Slomoff Symposium: Bridging Global Religious Divides
Tuesday, April 7– Wednesday, April 8, 2014
This symposium was held as part of the Annual Sylvia and Benjamin Slomoff Lectureship n Conflict Resolution at the John W. McCormack Graduate School of Policy and Global Studies, University of Massachusetts Boston.
Program and video links for April 2014 Symposium (pdf)
Shining Humanity: Life Stories of Women Peace-builders in Bosnia and Herzegovina
Wednesday, April 2, 2014
Zilka Spahic Siljak, WSRP Research Associate and Visiting Lecturer.
Watch video: April 2014 Lecture on Women Peace-builders
Faith-Based Community Organizing: How Working With the Religious Other Can Save the World
Wednesday, February 19, 2014
Part of CSWR junior fellow Usra Ghazi’s conversation series, "Interfaith as Antidote: Models of Faith-Based Civic Engagement"
Panelists: Marshall Ganz, Harvard Kennedy School and Graduate School of Education; Erica Rothschild, Boston’s Jewish Alliance for Law and Social Action: and Yusufi Vali, the Islamic Society of Boston Cultural Center
Watch video: February 2014 Conversation on Faith Based Community Organizing
Read Harvard Gazette coverage: February 2017 Conversation series
Religions for Peace and El-Hibri Foundation
In recognition of World Interfaith Harmony Week, the El-Hibri Foundation partnered with Religions For Peace USA in supporting a series of webinars focusing on developing interfaith skills.
Religions & Peace: Do Universities Have a Role?
Monday, December 2, 2013
Hosted by Dean David N. Hempton and moderated by Diana L. Eck.
Panelists: Dean Martha Minow, Harvard Law School; Shaun Casey, U.S. Secretary of State’s special advisor for faith-based community initiatives; Matthew Hodes, director of United Nations Alliance of Civilizations; Jonathan Granoff, president of Global Security Institute and special representative of United Religions Initiative; and Jocelyne Cesari, Harvard research associate and lecturer on Islamic studies.
Watch video: December 2013 Panel on Religions, Peace, and Universities
Monday, November 26, 2012
A celebration in honor of the message of twelfth-century Sufi Khwaja Moinuddin Chishty of Ajmer. Hosted by the Permanent Mission of India to the UN and UN Academic Impact. Several presentations include remarks by Syed Salman Chishty of Ajmer (32:15-53:30); Ambassador Hardeep Singh Puri of India (1:50-13:20); and Jonathan Granoff of the Global Security Institute (151:30-2:08).
The Fog of Religious Conflict
Thursday, August 30, 2012
HDS Convocation Address 2012
Dean David N. Hempton drew on the memory of violence he witnessed in Northern Ireland to offer hopeful visions for the future.
Watch video: August 2012 HDS Convocation
Read the full text of the August 2012 HDS Convocation
Read Harvard Gazette coverage of the August 2012 HDS Convocation