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Saturday, 3 October 2015

09:00 AM - 17:00 PM

IAIS (International Institute of Advanced Islamic Studies), Kuala Lumpur

“God Consciousness is JUST’s fifth all-embracing principle. Establishing its significance to contemporary civilization is central to JUST’s mission of raising public awareness on the essence of a just world. We have already published books and written articles on this principle apart from organizing seminars and conferences. We need to do more.

This is imperative in view of what is happening in the world today. Religion and God are so deeply embroiled in so many contemporary conflicts. It is not possible to analyze global politics in the 21st century without probing in depth the role of religion and the use and abuse of the concept of God.

JUST hopes to show that in spite all the turmoil and turbulence of the present, it is possible to develop a concept of God Consciousness which unifies diverse religious and cultural communities. How such a concept will work in practice will be illustrated with examples from the past and the present. This will require a transformation in our understanding of religion just as it will demand a sincere endeavour to address the human condition guided by a commitment to the role of the human being as vicegerent on earth tasked with fulfilling the divine trust.”

Report- Seminar on God Consciousness

The International Movement for a Just World (JUST) has held a one-day seminar on “God Consciousness” at the International Institute of Advanced Islamic Studies (IAIS), Malaysia last Saturday, October 3, 2015. In his opening remarks JUST president Dr. Chandra Muzaffar explained the relevance of the subject in our daily life. “God consciousness is related to our very existence and defines human relationship with one another,” he said. He pointed out how followers of God distorted the notion of God in many religious traditions and explained why one finds so many paradoxes in the name of God.

JUST vice-president Abdullah al-Ahsan, Exco member Jahaberdeen Mohamed Yunoos, peace activist Bob Maat and JUST member Kamar Oniah Kamaruzaman participated in a panel discussion on the subject. Dr. Abdullah argued that God consciousness couldn’t be understood by empirical research but the thought had to originate in one’s spiritual quest for understanding the meaning in life.

In his talk Dato’ Jahaberdeen underscored the challenges facing the realization of God consciousness in society today. While Bob Maat related his personal spiritual journey toward God consciousness, Dr. Kamar Oniah highlighted the interfaith perspective of the idea of God consciousness.

This was followed by lively discussion on the subject.

The panel discussion was followed by a workshop where participants addressed the question “how can God-consciousness help create a better human being and a better world.” 

Questions such as “Is it necessary to believe in God to be an ethical person?” “What are the major obstacles for the growth of God-consciousness in contemporary society?”  and “Why ‘God’ is so easily abused for ulterior purposes? were raised for discussion. 

About 40 participants attended the seminar.