Islamic Professor Addresses Peace at Oakwood University

Dr. Mahmoud Ayoub, professor of Islamic Studies and Christian-Muslim Relations at Hartford Seminary, lectures on "Islamic Visions of Peace" for the 'Ahl al-Kitab Lectureship of the Center for Adventist-Muslim Relations at Oakwood University. (Credit: Kay Campbell, AL.com)

Dr. Mahmoud Ayoub, professor of Islamic Studies and Christian-Muslim Relations at Hartford Seminary, lectures on “Islamic Visions of Peace” for the ‘Ahl al-Kitab Lectureship of the Center for Adventist-Muslim Relations at Oakwood University. (Credit: Kay Campbell, AL.com)

“Dr. Mahmoud M. Ayoub, professor of Islamic Studies and Christian-Muslim Relations at Hartford Seminary in Connecticut and emeritus professor of Islamic Studies and Comparative Religions at Temple University,” recently spoke at Oakwood University, a historically black Seventh-day Adventist university in Huntsville, Alabama. Ayoub’s presentation (“Islamic Visions of Peace”) was for the 2014 ‘Ahl al-Kitab Lectureship, which was sponsored by Oakwood’s Center for Adventist-Muslim Relations and the Huntsville Islamic Center, according to Kay Campbell of AL.com.

Ayoub shared that “‘Salaam’ as the Qu’ran describes it, is more than the absence of war.” Rather, it “is doing something positive–building up the Earth to make it a holy, safe place to make it the abode of God.”

Ayoub also spoke about jihad and helping people.

The only armed struggle, or “jihad,” authorized by the Qu’ran, said Ayoub…is an armed struggle on behalf of the oppressed.

“This is the ethics of war, according to the Qu’ran,” said Ayoub, who is blind and speaks in a still, quiet voice. “War is always a last choice – and if the enemy inclines toward peace, then you should, too.”

“Muhammad taught the middle way,” Ayoub said. “The goal is to help people who are in need. The world will never be perfect, but it can be a great deal better than it is today. What is the problem? Human greed, and people making idols of a nation or of wealth or even a religion.”

This report is based on two articles by Kay Campbell at AL.com:

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