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CIIS Strong at Parliament of the World’s Religions

Students, alums, and faculty represent at Utah conference

Jessica Paden December 1, 2015

CIIS faculty and students from CIIS joined such distinguished leaders as Dr. Jane Goodall, Terry Tempest Williams, Swami Suhitananda, and Chief Arvol Lookinghorse at a world conference on religion in Utah this Fall.

The Parliament of the World's Religions, an interfaith gathering held in Salt Lake City, which dedicates its purpose to interreligious harmony, focused this year on promoting the dignity and human rights of all women.

Mara Lynn Keller, professor of Philosophy and Religion, delivered the keynote speech at the Faith in Women's Plenary. Keller opened her keynote address with the reverberating words, 

I have Faith in Women: women of spirit, spirited women, women who believe that love is the core of life.

CIIS was well-represented by several faculty, student, and alumni attendees, including Women's Spirituality Chair Alka Arora, who spoke at the Women's Assembly. Arora copresented "Reclaiming a Sacred Relationship to All Beings: An Inter-Spiritual Dialogue," with Sara Salazar, lecturer in the School of Undergraduate Studies.

Elizabeth Allison, Chair of the Ecology, Spirituality, and Religion (ESR) program, spoke on a panel addressing Buddhism and Ecology. ESR adjunct faculty Elizabeth Ursic spoke about women and religious education.

Roughly 10,000 people attended, and more than 100 media stories were written about the Conference. Imam Abdul Malik Mujahid, Parliament Board Chair, reports that the overall response was a resounding, "This was the best Parliament ever!"

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