Baabul Ilm Education Society organized a ‘Inter-faith seminar on Existence of God at the conference centre of the Kwantlen Polytechnic University, Surrey campus. The seminar was very well attended. Some sixty plus people from all walks of life and different religious background attended the program. However, as usual participation from the Muslim community was very nominal despite the repeated invitation and requests by the organisers. Similarly, no notable Sunni scholar was present at the event. The majority of the audience was either Christians or Ahmadis and only handful of Muslims were present. It is a pity that the Muslim community did not give any importance to such an important event.
According to the Baabul Ilm Society the objective of this event was to demonstrate that Muslims or Islam has nothing against any other religion. Muslims believe in interfaith harmony and peaceful coexistence. The overall goal was to try and contribute towards dispelling the negative propaganda, especially in the Canadian media, against Islam and Muslims. This was fourth of the series of seminars organized by Baabul Ilm Education Society.
On behalf of Baabul Ilm Education Society Dr. Mohammad Akbar welcomed the audience to this unique, auspicious, and one of its kind occasion. He highlighted the goals and objectives of the Society and the purpose of organizing this conference. In addition the Society also organizes lectures, seminars and conferences on a variety of topics mainly related to education, literature, and on great events and personalities in the history. The idea is to enhance knowledge and awareness among the community.
Dr. Akbar said that the Society strive to promote a platform for interfaith dialogue and discussion. Our aim is to promote respect and understanding between people of different cultures so that we develop strong communities in this beautiful part of Canada, Dr. Akbar added.
Filza Raza representing youth gave a very good presentation on who youth view existence of God. Pastor Tim gave an enlightening and a revealing presentation. He said that we need to recognize our differences and yet we have to find and work on common grounds to build a better society that provides conducive environment for the peaceful coexistence of all the communities.
Professor Marci Luccock of Kwantlen Polytechnic University presented Jewish views on existence of God. Dr. Raminder Kang representing Sikh community gave a very nice presentation. He said that Sikhs also believe in one God. He recited some verses form their holy book which were very similar to what Muslims believe in terms of oneness of God.
Dr. Akber Mithani in his keynote address discussed the spiritual significance of existence of God. He said it would be very difficult to explain this important concept in this limited time. Dr. Mithani further said that it is difficult to understand especially in the modern world in which the religion is separated from other domains of life.
After the presentations a very lively Q and A session ensued. Audience from different backgrounds acknowledged that this event was very useful and timely. They said that this type of events is very helpful in understanding each other’s points of views and beliefs. Audience were of the view that in such events at least we can agree to disagree in a more civilized manner and in a more peaceful and educative environment. They expressed their gratitude for Baabul Ilm Education Society’s welcome and hospitality on Saturday afternoon. They also admired the graciousness in which Mahmood Jaffer conducted and MC’ed this event, particularly the lively question and answer session.