Oludamini Ogunnaike is an assistant professor of religious studies at the University of Virginia. His research interests include the philosophical dimensions of postcolonial, colonial, and precolonial Islamic and indigenous religious traditions of West and North Africa. He has taught courses on Islam, Islamic philosophy, spirituality, art, and African diasporic religions. He recently published his dissertation as a full-length monograph: Deep Knowledge: Ways of Knowing in Sufism and Ifa, Two West African Intellectual Traditions.
Feraidoon Mojadedi emigrated with his family to America from Herat, Afghanistan in 1985 after the Russian invasion of Afghanistan. He grew up in a household with a deep love and reverence for poetry. At the age of five he began to memorize poems by Rumi and other great poets. His love of poetry continued to grow and eventually developed into a passion and calling that would allow him to teach regular classes, especially on Rumi, across the United States, the UK, Canada, Australia, Malaysia, Germany and even in Konya, Turkey, where Mawlana Rumi is laid to rest.