The official student newspaper of University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire since 1923.

The Spectator

The official student newspaper of University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire since 1923.

The Spectator

The official student newspaper of University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire since 1923.

The Spectator

Lecture to explain Islamic religion

Most people in the United States are not familiar with Islamic teachings.

To help explain the religion, Continuing Education is offering a free lecture titled “Understanding Islam.”

It will run from 7 to 9 p.m. today in Phillips Recital Hall of the Haas Fine Arts Center.

“The value of understanding other cultures is very important for all of us,” said Diane Brandt, Continuing Education’s outreach specialist. “The better we understand the people around us, the less hatred we’ll have.”

Story continues below advertisement

Brandt said she hopes to provide the community with a broader understanding of Islamic religion and culture with the “Understanding Islam” program.

Willis Gertner, professor emeritus of philosophy and religious studies, will give an introductory lecture on Islam tonight.

Participants will be able to engage in an open discussion, Brandt said.

The lecture is being offered in response to a growing interest in Islam since the Sept. 11 attack, she said.

Continuing Education will also present a one-credit course this fall titled “Islam in the World: an Introduction to Islam and Current World Events.”

Brett Greider, assistant professor of religious studies, will teach the course, which will be available for graduate and undergraduate credit, Brandt said.

“I have had, in my `Introduction to World Religions’ classes, many students who feel an urgent need to understand what Islam is about,” said Greider.

He and other world religions instructors have changed their curricula – teaching Islam earlier in the semester than usual – to reflect students’ interest, he said.

While curiosity about Islam has grown in the United States, intolerance has forced some Muslims to fear for their lives, Greider said.

“People came to this country for freedom of religion, and yet some people who now live in it don’t feel that freedom. It shouldn’t be that way,” he said.

Neither should Islam be equated with Muslim extremists anymore than Christianity should be equated with white supremacists, he said.

The vast majority of Muslims not only condemn violence, they orient themselves toward peace, hospitality, generosity and prayer, he said.

The name Islam comes from the Arabic word `salama,’ which means peace, according to Web site.

For more information on the lecture or the one-credit course, contact Diane Brandt, Continuing Education, at (715) 836-4526.

Leave a Comment
More to Discover

Comments (0)

The Spectator intends for this area to be used to foster healthy, thought-provoking discussion. Comments are expected to adhere to our standards and to be respectful and constructive. As such, we do not permit the use of profanity, foul language, personal attacks or the use of language that might be interpreted as libelous. The Spectator does not allow anonymous comments and requires a valid email address. The email address will not be displayed but will be used to confirm your comments.
All The Spectator Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Activate Search
Lecture to explain Islamic religion