Colloquium Series

The Colloquium Series  consists of a number of lectures or forums or  conference revolving around issues related to Asian and Oceanic cultures and/or faith traditions.  These events will be open to the whole Graduate Theological Union (GTU) community and the general public to facilitate a richer conversation on the subject matter.

The following events are resources available within GTUand beyond, such as University of California, Berkeley (UCB), and are recommended for fulfilling the AOCFT colloquium requirements. (Note: All events organized by the two GTU centers of affiliation, i.e. the Center for Islamic Studies and the Institute of Buddhist Studies, are eligible for fulfilling the colloquium requirements of the Asian and Oceania Cultures and Faith Traditions Certificate.


Fall 2011-Spring 2012


※    Mar 25, 2011, 7:00-9:00 pm

Hear Our Prayer: A Panel on the Importance of Interfaith Community

Ecumenical Center, 2401 Le Conte Avenue, Berkeley, CA 94709

※    Apr 12, 2011, 7pm
The Surjit Singh Lecture in Comparative Religious Thought and Culture

Being Interfaith Now: New Directions in American Religious Pluralism

Chapel of the Great Commission, Pacific School of Religion
Speaker:    Kate McCarthy (GTU Ph.D. '94), Professor, CSU Chicago, and author of Interfaith Encounters in America

※    Apr 15, 2011, 12noon

Secularism, Sexuality, and Religious Difference

MUDD 100, Pacific School of Religion, 1798 Scenic Avenue, Berkeley
Speaker:    Saba Mahmood, Associate Professor of Anthropology at UCB

※    Apr 28, 2011, 6:30pm
Fourth Annual Boswell Lecture:

The Rainbow Connection: The Rainbow Connection: Bridging Asian American and Queer Theologies

Bade Museum, Pacific School of Religion, 1798 Scenic Ave., Berkeley


Center for Islamic Studies

※    Feb 14, 2011, 5:30pm.

The Right to Religious Liberty and Minorities: A Geopolitical Problem?

Badè Museum, Pacific School of Religion, 1798 Scenic Avenue, Berkeley

Speaker:    Saba Mahmood, Associate Professor of Anthropology at UCB


※    Feb. 26, 2011, 6 pm

Islam and Authors Event: Stephan Salisbury "Mohamed's Ghosts"

Islamic Cultural Center of Northern California (ICCNC), 1433 Madison Street (between 14th and 15th streets), Oakland, CA 94612


※    April 9, 2011, 9 - 6pm

Fourth UC Berkeley Islamic Finance Forum

Ethics & Regulation: Critical Approaches to Islamic Banking

Room 105, UCB School of Law


April 12, 2011, 1 – 3pm

Islamic Reforms and the Arab Revolution: What are the
next steps?

105 Stanley Hall, UCB

Speakers: Professor Tariq Ramadan and Dr. Hatem Bazian


※    April 16, 2011, 6 - 7:30 pm

An Islam and Authors conversation with Jason van Boom

Jonathan AC Brown on "Hadith: Muhammad's Legacy
in the Medieval and Modern World"

Islamic Cultural Center of Northern California
(ICCNC), 1433 Madison Street, Oakland


※    Apr 21, 10:00am - Apr 22, 2011, 5:00pm

Conference: Producing Islamophobia in the US and Re-Defining Global Security Agenda for the 21st Century

Booth Auditorium, Boalt Law School, UC Berkeley

Panels include:

-    Islamophobia: Media Production and Re-Production of Racism

-    Islamophobia at the Ballot Box: Who Benefits?

-    Islamophobia, Citizenship, Patriotism and the Security State

-    Clash of Civilizations Discourses and Global Security

Conference: Religious
Norms in the Public Sphere: The Challenge


May 6 - May 7, 2011

Great Hall, Bancroft Hotel, Berkeley

※    May 5, 2011, 5:45pm

Keynote: Norms in
the Madras-Sphere: Between Tradition, Scripture and the Public Good

Speaker: Ebrahim E.I. Moosa, Associate Professor of
Islamic Studies, Duke University



Institute of Buddhist Studies

Ryukoku Lecture Series: The Hongwanji

The History of the Shin Buddhist Tradition: significant persons, moments and issues

Jodo Shinshu Center, 2140 Durant Avenue, Berkeley, CA 94704

※    March 2, 2011, 2:10 pm to 5:00 pm

Lecture One: Buddhadharma and the feudal system

※    March 9, 2011, 2:10 pm to 5:00 pm

Lecture Two: The Sangō Wakuran incident and its impact

※    March 16, 2011, 2:10 pm to 5:00 pm.

Lecture Three: Hongwanji and the State: the two truth theory

Speaker:    Professor Atsushi Hirata, Department of History, Ryūkoku University, Kyoto, Japan


※    April 1, 2011, 2:00 pm to 5:00 pm

First Annual IBS Graduate Student Symposium

Institute of Buddhist Studies, 2140 Durant Avenue, Suite 30, Berkeley


Dianne Muller (DSPT): "The Concepts of White Buddhism and Double Belonging in Contemporary America"

Trent Thornley (IBS): "Coming Out Buddha"  

Courtney Bruntz (GTU-PhD): "Nanhai Guanyin and Notions of the Colossus" 

Anthony Rodgers (IBS): "Investigating Western Applications of Buddhadharma"


※    Apr 22, 2011 3:00 pm

Spring 2011 Numata Lecture

Making Sense of the Blood Bowl Sutra: Gender, Pollution, and Salvation in Buddhist Sermons from Early Modern Japan

Jodo Shinshu Center, 2140 Durant Avenue, Berkeley

Speaker:    Prof. Lori Meeks, University of Southern California


UCB Religion, Politics and Globalization Program

※    Feb 22, 2011 12:45 - 2 pm

Language as Enactment: Reflections Upon the Park 51 Mosque Debates Through Cultural and Ethnographic Explorations of the Muslim 'Other'

Boalt Hall 240, UC Berkeley

Speaker:   Dr. Arshard Ali


※    Mar 28, 2011, 12:40 - 2 pm

The Idea of Constitutionalism in Islamic Legal Theory: The Iranian Example

Boalt Hall 145, UC Berkeley

Speaker:  Dr. Amirhassan Boozari


UCB Asian Studies

※    Jan 18, 2011, 4pm

Weaving Local Stories into Epic Theatre: On The Village and the Preservation of Collective Memory

IEAS Conference Room, 2223 Fulton Street, Sixth Floor, Berkeley

Speaker:    Stan Lai, Playwright, and an Alumnus of UC Berkeley


※    Jan 19, 2011 4pm.

Asian Biotech: Ethics and Communities of Fate

IEAS Conference Room, 2223 Fulton Street, Sixth Floor, Berkeley

Speaker:    Aihwa Ong, Professor of Anthropology, UC Berkeley


※    Jan 26, 2011 12:10-1 p.m.

Ethics and Literature: Chinese Experimental Fiction in the 1980s

Center for Chinese Studies, 3401 Dwinelle Hall

Speaker:    Lin Zou, Visiting Scholar, Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures, Stanford University


※    Feb 2, 2011, 1 - 5 pm

Symposium: Religion and the Arts in Mongolia

Home Room, International House, UC Berkeley

Panel: Mongolian Buddhism


Vesna Wallace, Religious Studies, UC Santa Barbara

Venerable Lama Damchaabazar Gurjav, Zanabazar Center of Buddhism

Matthew King, University of Toronto

Uranchimeg Tsultem, History of Art, UC Berkeley

Keynote Address:

Battulga Luvsan, General Consul from Mongolia to the United States

Panel: Traditional Arts of Mongolia


G. Mend-Ooyo, Poet and President of Mongolia Academy of Culture and Poetry

Byambasuren Sharav, Composer

Peter Marsh, Mongolian Music Specialist, California State University-East Bay

O. Enkhtaivan, Artist


※    Feb 10, 2011 5pm.

How Does It Feel To Be a Problem? Why Arabs and Muslim Americans Are at the Heart of Today's Culture Wars

340 Stephens Hall, UC Berkeley

Speaker:    Professor Moustafa Bayoumi, Department of English, Brooklyn College, City University of New York


※    March 9, 2011 4 – 6pm.

The Daxue: What’s so “great” about it?, and the Zhongyong: What does it mean? – A Reconsideration of the Core Arguments of the Latter Two Formulations of the “Four Books” Vision

Center for Chinese Studies, Sixth floor, 2223 Fulton Street, Berkeley

Speaker:    Andrew Plaks, Professor Emeritus, Chinese Literature, Princeton University


※    May 4, 2011 4pm.

Adopted Territory: Transnational Korean Adoptees and the Politics of Belonging

Institute of East Asian Studies, 2223 Fulton, 6th Floor, Berkeley

Speaker:    Eleana Kim, Anthropology, University of Rochester


UCB Buddhist Studies


※    Feb 10, 2011 5-6:30 p.m.

"Just Sitting"? Dōgen's Take on Sūtra Reading and Other Conventional Buddhist Practices

Institute of East Asian Studies, 2223 Fulton Street, Sixth floor, Berkeley

Speaker:    T. Griffith Foulk, Sarah Lawrence College


※    February 17, 2011, 5:00 pm

Buddhism and the Everyday World: Issues around Religion and Science in Tibetan Intellectual History

IEAS conference room, 2223 Fulton Street, 6th floor, UCB

Speaker:    Janet Gyatso, Harvard University


※    Mar 10, 2011, 5 – 6:30pm

Jizō's Many Japanese Faces: Two Apocryphal Sutras and Their Influence

Institute of East Asian Studies (2223 Fulton, 6th Floor), Conference Room, Berkeley

Speaker:    Sarah Horton, Bukkyō Dendō Kyōkai


※    May 5, 2011, 5-6:30 p.m.

Chinese Buddhism in the Tangut State

Institute of East Asian Studies, 2223 Fulton, 6th Floor, Berkeley

Speaker:    Kirill Solonin, St. Petersburg State University, Russia


UCB Center for Southeast Asian Studies

※    Jan 31, 2011 4pm.

The Sdok Kok Thom Inscription: Window into the Lost Angkorian Past

Institute of East Asian Studies, 2223 Fulton, 6th Floor, Berkeley

Speaker: John Burgess, Journalist


UCB Center for South Asia Studies

※    Jan 19, 2011 1-2 p.m.

India Calling: An Intimate Portrait of a Nation’s Remaking

North Gate Hall, Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism Library

Speaker: Anand Giridharadas, columnist and author, New York Times


Feb 18, 2011, 12-2 p.m.

A Matter of Honour: Britain, the 'Behzti' Affair, and the Question of Multiculturalism

306 Wheeler Hall, UC Berkeley

Speaker:     Priyamvada Gopal, Lecturer, Faculty of English, University of Cambridge


※    Mar 3, 2011, 6-9 p.m.

Bãtchìt Around the Bay: Collaborative Conversations about South Asian Art and Culture

San Jose Museum of Art, 110 South Market Street, San Jose, CA 95113


※    Apr 4, 2011, 5-7 p.m.

Class, Gender and Dalit Politics: A conversation between Dr. Gopal Guru and Dr. Anupama Rao

Stephens Hall, UC Berkeley


Gopal Guru, Professor of Social and Political Theory, Centre for Political Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University

Anupama Rao, Associate Professor of History, Barnard College


Seventh Annual Tamil Conference

※    Apr 29, 2011, 4-6 p.m.

Tradition and Poetics in Tamil Literary History

370 Dwinelle Hall

Speaker: Chelva Kanaganayagam, Professor, Department of English; Director, Centre for South Asian Studies, University of Toronto

※    April 30 – May 1, 2011, 8:30 a.m.-5 p.m.

Tamil Marapu

370 Dwinelle Hall

Speaker:    Berkeley Tamil Chair




Asia Project

Story-telling: The Traditional Medium for Weaving Culture and Theology in Oceania

※   Public Lecture: Nov 3, 2010, 7:00 p.m., PSR Bade Museum

※   Colloquium: Nov 4, 2010, 2:00 – 5:00p.m., Dinner Board Room, GTU Library Bldg.

Speaker:    Dr. Jenny Te Paa, Principal of the College of St. John the Evangelist, Auckland, New Zealand


Center for Islamic Studies

※    Oct. 12, 2010,    7:00 p.m.

Ground Zero Mosque" or Zero Mosques in America: Islamophobia and Critical Race Theory

155 Dwinelle Hall UC Berkeley


Dina Ibrahim, San Francisco State University

Munir Jiwa, Graduate Theological Union

Rabab Ibrahim Abdulhadi, San Francisco State University

Stefania Pandolfo, UC Berkeley

Imam Zaid Shakir, Zaytuna College

Hatem Bazian, UC Berkeley and Zaytuna College

Ramon Grosfoguel, UC Berkeley

※    October 15-16, 2010

Response and Responsibility

Dominican School of Philosophy and Theology Galleria

2301 Vine Street, Berkeley, CA 94708


James Morris: "Whose Calling, Whose Response? Ibn 'Arabi on Divine and Human Responsiveness"

Todd Lawson: "Ibn Arabi's Joseph: Imagination as Holy Communion"

Jane Carroll: "The Eye's Response"

Giv Nassiri: "Response and Responsiveness in Night Vigils"


Institute of Buddhist Studies

※    October 2, 2010 to October 3, 2010

Homa Conference: Variations of Homa: from Vedic to Hindu and Buddhist

One Bow Street, 3rd Floor, Room 317, Cambridge, MA 02138

※    February 18, 2011 to February 20, 2011

First International Conference on Other-Centered Approaches: New Directions in Buddhist Psychology

Jodo Shinshu Center, Berkeley, California


UCB Asian Studies

※    October 3, 3:00 p.m.

Willa and George Tanabe on Japanese Religious Art: Conversation in Conjunction with Flowers of the Four Seasons Exhibition

Berkeley Art Museum, Museum Theater
Willa Tanabe, Professor Emerita, Dept of Art and Art History, University of Hawaii
George Tanabe, Professor Emeritus, Dept. of Religion, University of Hawaii

※    October 15, 9:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.

Conference: The Second U.S.- China Cultural Forum: A Binational Conversation on Bridging Cultures

UCB Faculty Club, Heyns Room

※    November 15, 9:00 a.m.

Crystal of Collected Wisdom: The Arabic Chinese Calligraphy of Haji Noor Deen

Exhibit/Talk: Center for Chinese Studies, Institute of East Asian Studies
Speaker: Haji Noor Deen, Master Calligrapher

UCB Buddhist Studies

※    October 5, 5:00 -6:30 p.m.

Oedipal God: The Legend and Cult of Nezha (Nalakūbara)

Institute of East Asian Studies, Conference Room, sixth floor, 2223 Fulton Street
Speaker/Performer: Meir Shahar, Professor, Tel Aviv University, Israel

※    November 4, 5:00 p.m.

The Emperor's Misaie as the Rite of Legitimation and Resistance

IEAS conference room, 2223 Fulton Street, 6th floor, UCB
Speaker:    Asuka Sango, Carleton College

※    November 12, 2010, 5:00 pm

Myth and Counter Myth in Early Modern Japan

3335 Dwinelle Hall, UCB
Speaker: William M. Bodiford, University of California, Los Angeles

※    November 18, 2010, 5:00 pm

Traditional Tibetan Art: Moving Beyond Iconography & Religion

UC Berkeley Art Museum, Museum Theater, 2625 Durant Avenue (between Bowditch and College)
Speaker:    Jeff Watt, Director and Chief Curator, Himalayan Art Resources

※    February 17, 2011, 5:00 pm

Buddhism and the Everyday World: Issues around Religion and Science in Tibetan Intellectual History

IEAS conference room, 2223 Fulton Street, 6th floor, UCB
Speaker:    Janet Gyatso, Harvard University


UCB Center for Southeast Asian Studies

 ※    October 6, 12:30 – 2:00 p.m.

From Ta Prohm to Bayon

Institute of East Asian Studies (2223 Fulton, 6th Floor), 6F Conference Room
Speaker: Dr. Olivier Cunin, independent scholar

※    October 21, 4:00 - 5:30 p.m.

A Real Place with Real People": A Feminist/Queer Cartography of Burmese Supernaturalism, Gender, and Human Rights

Institute of East Asian Studies (2223 Fulton, 6th Floor), 6F Conference Room
Speaker: Tamara Ho, Assistant Professor, Women's Studies, UC Riverside

※    October 22

Performing Arts: Gamelan Çudamani

Zellerbach Hall, UCB
Performers: Bali’s musicians and dancers

UCB Center for South Asia Studies

※    October 12, 5:00 –7:00 p.m.

Interiors and Interiority in Nineteenth Century India

10 (CSAS Conference Room), Stephens Hall, UCB
Speaker: Supriya Chaudhuri, Professor of English, Jadavpur University, Calcutta, India

※    October 19, 5:00 -7:30 p.m.

The Difficulty of Being Good: On the Subtle Art of Dharma

The Bancroft Hotel, 2680 Bancroft Way, Berkeley, CA 94704
Speaker: Gurcharan Das


 National Conferences or Seminars

  • Asian Pacific Americans and Religion Research Initiative (APARRI) – each August
  • Asian Theological Summer Institute at Lutheran Theological Seminary at Philadelphia – each June
  • Pacific, Asian, and North American Asian Women in Theology and Ministry (PANAAWTM) – each March

       March 24-26, 2011:

       Immigration, Borders, Boundaries

        Simpsonwood Conference Center, 4511 Jones Bridge Circle, NW,    

       Norcoss, GA 30092

  • Council for Pacific Asian Theology (CPAT)
    Oct 2, 2010:
    Pacific Northwest Conference --

       Growing Interfaith Conference with Religions Working Together To Make Global Peace and "Heaven on Earth"



Community Event in San Francisco Bay Area

※    September 25, 2010

Pilgrimage to Angel Island: From the Whispers of the Past to the Cries for Justice Today