Culture At Large

Eboo Patel on interfaith leadership

Josh Larsen

We have another video from Calvin College’s ongoing January Series for you, this time of Eboo Patel’s presentation on “Interfaith Leadership: Engaging Religious and Philosophical Diversity in the 21st Century.”

An American Muslim of Indian heritage, Patel has written two books about interfaith cooperation, Acts of Faith and Sacred Ground, and is founder and executive director of the Interfaith Youth Core, a nonprofit dedicated to building the interfaith youth movement.

In his presentation, Patel emphasized the “holiness of diversity” and the “sacredness of relationship.” He offered examples of Christian leaders who had exhibited interfaith cooperation, including Dietrich Bonhoeffer and Martin Luther King Jr. “Did King’s admiration of other religions make him any less of a Christian?” Patel asked, referencing King’s great respect for Mahatma Gandhi.

In the question and answer session, Patel encouraged the audience to “learn things that you admire about other religions.” At the same time, he recognized that each faith tradition has its own, distinct core beliefs. Determining when to cooperate with those from another tradition and when to evangelize is, he admitted, “part of the art of living.”

Patel’s entire talk can be viewed below. A list of the remaining January Series speakers, as well as details on how to follow along remotely via Think Christian, can be found here.

Topics: Culture At Large, Theology & The Church, Faith, Evangelism, Other Religions, News & Politics, Social Trends