3 July 2024 – The East London Mosque yesterday launched ELM Connex, a new initiative designed to foster intellectual discourse and community engagement. The inaugural event featured Dr Zulfiqar Ali Shah, who delivered an insightful talk on how Islam shaped the English Enlightenment.

Junaid Ahmed, CEO of the East London Mosque, introduced ELM Connex to the audience, speaking about the importance of the new platform:

ELM Connex represents our commitment to creating a dynamic space where knowledge and community intersect. By bringing leading experts, scholars, and thought leaders to our mosque, we aim to facilitate meaningful discussions on crucial issues affecting our society.

In a compelling presentation, Dr Zulfiqar Ali Shah discussed his new book, Islam and The English Enlightenment: The Untold Story. The book offers a fresh perspective on how Islam and the Muslim world influenced Western thought. Dr Zulfiqar Ali Shah stressed the importance of recognising the centuries of intellectual and cultural exchange and borrowing between Islamic civilisations and the West. He highlighted that all civilisations are mosaics, formed through such intellectual and cultural exchanges.

The event highlighted several key points, including the danger of thinking in civilisational silos. Dr Zulfiqar Ali Shah challenged common misconceptions about the European Renaissance and the so-called ‘Dark Ages’, pointing out the flourishing of sciences in the Muslim world during this period.

Through initiatives like ELM Connex, East London Mosque seeks to create a dynamic platform, connecting with leading experts, scholars, and thought leaders from around the world to share cutting-edge insights on issues that matter.


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