Religion has always been something that both unites and divides us humans. To Reza Aslan, it seems that we focus more and more on the differences. Many people would be surprised to learn how much collaboration there was between the major religions at the time of their development, and how many similarities there are as a result. Aslan, a renowned scholar of religious history, delves into this in his book God: A Human History. He focuses on the remarkably cohesive attempt to understand the divine in human terms—nearly every religious tradition, as Aslan writes, conceives of God as “a divine version of ourselves.”
But this projection is not without consequences. As conceptions of God take on those qualities of virtue in human nature—compassion, a desire for justice—the divine also exhibits our greed and inclination toward violence. Having published best-selling books on the future of Islam, the life of Jesus Christ and religious extremism in a globalizing world, Aslan is especially prepared to answer these questions. No matter your religious beliefs, join us for a conversation that is sure to challenge your own conception of the divine and how it has shaped our world today.Event Poster
This Yohsin Lecture is part of the Presidential Lecture Series that is sponsored by the Office of the President to bring the most distinguished scholars, artists and critics of our time to Habib University for engagement with civil society and the University's faculty and students. The Lecture is administered by Habib University's different schools and academic centers depending on the nature of talk and the invited guest.
Dr. Reza Aslan is an internationally renowned Iranian-American writer, professor and scholar of religions. He is the author of a number of international bestsellers, including No god but God: The Origins, Evolution, and Future of Islam and Zealot: The Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth. Dr. Aslan is also the producer for The Leftovers (HBO), Of Kings and Prophets (ABC) and Rought Draft (Ovation). Dr. Aslan teaches creative writing at the University of California, Riverside and has written for a number of publications, including The Washington Post, The New York Times and The Christian Science Monitor.
Dr. Aslan holds a B.A. in Religious Studies from Santa Clara University, a Master of Theological Studies from Harvard Divinity School, and a PhD from the University of California, Santa Barbara. He is also the recipient of the prestigious James Joyce Award.