A Global Philosophy of Religion in Des Moines

Globally, we enact an innovative new approach to the philosophy of religion that compares over a wide diversity of religious reasons and ideas. Locally, we work the religions of Des Moines to create resources about their communities, digital stories about their practices, and photographs of their sacred spaces.

Kabbalah, Language, and Transcendental Mysteries

Steven Katz, Alvin J. and Shirley Slater Chair of Jewish and Holocaust Studies, Boston University Feb. 26, 7 p.m., Sussman Theater, Olmsted Center The Jewish mystical tradition, like all mystical traditions, has had to deal with the issue of language and the communication of mystical experience. In responding to this basic issue, Jewish mystics did not emphasize ineffability. Instead, they…


The Sayings and Missayings of Samuel Beckett

Craig Owens, Associate Professor of English, Drake University February 12, 7:00 p.m., Sussman Theater, Olmsted Center The narrators of Samuel Beckett’s novels and the characters in his plays fill their worlds with words. In his final trilogy of novels, Nowhow On, these utterances become intensely self-reflective, so much so that they are about uttering itself, the signifier’s inability to bear…

Student Comparisons (Fall 2014 Comparative Religions Course)

Professor Knepper’s Fall 2104 Comparative Religions course studied discourses of ineffability in Zen Buddhism (especially Dogen) and the Hindu theological tradition of Advaita Vedanta. Below are some of the students’ final papers: Isaiah Enockson’s comparative paper Renee Kumon’s comparative paper Ken Kuniy’s comparative paper


Exhibitions on Art and Ineffability

Drake University’s Comparison Project hosts two exhibitions on art and ineffability during the month of November with opening events on Friday, November 7. The opening events feature poetic and musical performances of ineffability from 5:00 to 6:00 p.m. in Weeks Gallery, a gallery talk on contemporary abstract painting as a form of wordless communication at 6:15 p.m., and a concert…