Sikh Scholar to Speak at St. Thomas Nov. 14 About God and Religious Diversity

Rahuldeep Singh Gill, associate professor of religion and director of the Center for Equality and Justice at California Lutheran University, will present “The Oneness of God and the Diversity of Religions: A Sikh Perspective” on Monday, Nov. 14, at 1:30 p.m. in Room 100 of McNeely Hall on the St. Paul campus of the University of St. Thomas.

 Rahuldeep Singh Gill

Rahuldeep Singh Gill

The lecture, sponsored by the Jay Phillips Center for Interfaith Learning, is free and open to the public.

“The Sikh Holy Scripture, Guru Granth Sahib [compiled in 1604], begins with the assertion that 'God is One,'” said John Merkle, director of the Jay Phillips Center, “and this theme of God’s oneness pervades not only the 1,430 pages of Guru Granth Sahib but also the subsequent Sikh tradition.

“At the same time, Sikhism promotes the idea of religious diversity as a divine good for the human family,” Merkle said. “In his lecture at St. Thomas, professor Gill will explore these Sikh teachings and explain why he regards them as true and necessary.”

Gill earned his M.A. and Ph.D. degrees in religious studies at the University of California, Santa Barbara. Twice voted Diversity Professor of the Year at California Lutheran University, he has served as visiting professor of Sikh studies at Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley, California.

"Professor Gill is an expert not only in Sikh studies but also in the field of interfaith dialogue,” Merkle said. “And he is widely known in interfaith circles as an engaging and enlightening speaker.”

Gill’s writings have been published in scholarly journals and encyclopedias, as well as in popular media outlets such as the Los Angeles Times, The Washington Post and The Huffington Post. His first book Drinking from Love’s Cup: Surrender and Sacrifice in the Vars of Bhai Gurdas was published this year by Oxford University Press and he is working on a second book called Pluralists: Great Leaders in History Who Brought People Together.

The Jay Phillips Center is a joint enterprise of St. Thomas and Saint John’s University, Collegeville.