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September 16-17, 2016–Morgan Davis

Morgan DavisMiller Eccles Study Group Texas is excited to announce that our September 2016 speaker will be D. Morgan Davis. By virtue of Morgan’s educational background in Arabic and Islamic Studies, and his professional experience as head of the Middle Eastern Texts Initiative at the Maxwell Institute, Morgan is singularly qualified to speak on this topic of current political and international interest. You won’t want to miss this timely and informative presentation.

DATES AND LOCATIONS:

Friday, September 16, 7 pm (McKinney)
(at the office of Dale Drake)
110 E. Davis Street
McKinney, Texas 75070

Saturday, September 17, 7 pm (Arlington)
3804 Indian Springs Trail
Arlington, Texas 76016

THE TOPIC:

“Religion in the Real World: Mormonism and Islam”

Latter-day Saints in the United States have a lot to think about these days. In Europe and the Middle East there is an ongoing humanitarian and refugee crisis involving millions of people displaced by war who we have been counseled to care for, even as politicians here and abroad raise questions about whether it is safe to give refuge to Muslims when Islamic terrorists are avowedly looking for ways to strike in the West. In addition to these concerns, leaders of the Church warn of growing secularism within the U.S. and teach that religion has been and must continue to be a primary force for good in our society and that religious freedom needs to be carefully defended. They include Islam as one of the religious communities with which we should partner in such efforts. But how are we to understand and implement this counsel? What is the role of faith in a world driven by fear? How can we be both realistic and charitable as we confront these various issues as disciples of Christ?

With training in Arabic and Islamic Studies, Morgan’s research is focused on what scripture is and how it functions within religious communities, particularly those of Mormons and Muslims. For this presentation, he will offer an opportunity learn more about Islam and how Mormons and Muslims can build bridges of understanding while being faithful to our respective traditions.

THE SPEAKER:

Morgan Davis is an Assistant Research Fellow at Brigham Young University’s Neal A. Maxwell Institute for Religious Scholarship. He holds a PhD (2005) in Arabic and Islamic studies from the University of Utah, an MA in history from the University of Texas at Austin, and a BA in Near Eastern Studies from Brigham Young University.

Davis has been affiliated with the Middle Eastern Texts Initiative (METI) since its launch in 1993, supervising the translation, editing, and publication of dual language editions of works from the Classical Islamic world in which Jewish, Christian, and Muslim scholars all flourished. He has served as the project’s director since 2010. Davis is also an associate editor of the Mormon Studies Review.

His areas of research include Arabic/Islamic philosophy and theology, as well as comparative scripture, with a particular focus on the Qurʾan and it’s interest to the Latter-day Saint tradition. With Andrew C. Skinner and Carl Griffin he coedited and contributed to Bountiful Harvest: Essays in Honor of S. Kent Brown (Provo: Maxwell Institute, 2011) and has published articles in BYU StudiesThe Religious Educator, and Studies in the Bible and Antiquity. At BYU he has taught classes on the Book of Mormon, Islam, Arabic philosophy, and the history of the Middle East to 1800.

An avid traveler, runner, hiker, and mountain biker, and an occasional tenor soloist, Davis is married to the former Kristina Nelson, and they are the parents of four sons and two daughters.

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