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IIS Scholar Presents at International Symposium, Göttingen

29th September 2009

International Symposium.  Photograph courtesy of: The Institute of Arabic and Islamic Studies at the University of GottingenThe symposium, themed ‘Roads to Paradise: Eschatology and Concepts of the Hereafter in Islam’, was organised by Sebastian Günther of the University of Göttingen and Todd Lawson of the University of Toronto. Hosted by the Institute of Arab and Islamic Studies, of the Georg-August University in Göttingen, the symposium was held in the magnificent Lecture Hall of the State and University Library of Göttingen, a former church.

Dr Ali-de-Unzaga and colleagues at the International Symposium. Photograph courtesy of: The Institute of Arabic and Islmaic Studies at the University of GottingenDr Alí-de-Unzaga's paper was entitled 'Spiritual Vision, Resurrection and the Adamic Drama Actualised: The Linguistic and Esoteric Understanding of the Afterlife in the Epistles of the Pure Brethren (Rasa’il Ikhwan al-Safa')’ and was part of a panel presentation on ‘Shi‘i, Philosophical and Esoteric Contemplations of Paradise and the Eschaton’. The paper discussed how the Pure Brethren argue for a spiritual and intellectual understanding of the concepts of qiyama (resurrection) and ba'th (awakening), through a discussion on the issue of ‘bodily’ resurrection and an interpretation of passages from the Holy Qur’aninfo-icon: the authors view paradise as ‘the spiritual realm’ and hell as ‘the corporeal realm’. The paper also discussed how the story of Adam’s creation, where all angels bowed to him except Iblisinfo-icon, as portrayed in the Holy Qur’an, is seen in the Rasa’il as an actual event that takes place inside each human being.

Dr Karen Bauer and colleagues at International Symposium. Photograph courtesy of: The Institute of Arabic and Islamic Studies at the University of GottingenAnother IIS scholar, Dr Karen Bauer, chaired a panel on ‘Reincarnation, Afterlife, and the Awaited Mahdiinfo-icon’. IIS Senior Research Fellows, Profs Hermann Landolt and Wilferd Madelung gave papers entitled ‘Being-Towards-Resurrection as a Theme of Philosophical Shi‘isminfo-icon’ and ‘Al-Ghazali’s Philosophical Interpretation of Traditional Islamic Eschatology in his Masa’il al-Madnun’, respectively.



For more information, see: University of Göttingen
(Photographs courtesy of "the Institute of Arabic and Islamic Studies at the University of Göttingen”)