A Muslim Perspective on the Human Person in the Context of Interreligious Dialogue

Free to Attend

Heythrop College, University of London

Dr Ozcan Keles

Dr Ozcan Keles

Chairperson of the Dialogue Society

Ozcan is a non-practising Barrister and member of the Honourable Society of Gray's Inn. He is the Chairperson of the Dialogue Society since 2008; was the Executive Chairperson of the same organisation between 2008 and 2014; the Executive Editor of the peer-reviewed biannual academic Journal of Dialogue Studies since 2014 and a full-time PhD candidate in the sociology of human rights at the University of Sussex. Between 2006 and 2009 he was a research student with Prof Kevin Boyle at the Human Rights Centre of the University of Essex, where he held the Scholarship Award of 2006. Ozcan was called to the Bar in 2005 after successfully completing the Bar course at the Inns of Court School of Law. He obtained his LLM in Human Rights Law from SOAS, University of London, in 2002.

Ozcan Keles, Executive Director of the Dialogue Society will deliver the afternoon keynote speech at ‘The Human Person’ Postgraduate Research Conference at Heythrop College, Unversity of London on Saturday, 23rd May 2009 at 4pm. The lecture will address the centrality of the human person in the creation of God in Islam and how this relates to the wider issue of dialogue with God, dialogue with each other and dialogue with wider creation. According to Islam, the human person was created to discover, know and love God. The purpose of worship is to achieve the status of loving God. In the words of Gazzali, the famous Islamic thinker, worship of God out of fear is the lowest form or worship while worship out of love of God is the highest form of worship. Existence therefore is to know and love. One cannot love that which one does not know. One attains knowledge of God by knowing oneself, through knowing each other and discovering wider creation. This in turn is achieved by dialogue. The second part of the lecture will emphasise the importance of dialogue in Islam.

Attendance is closed and regulated by the University.