Experiential Learning Opportunities
Religious Studies majors are encouraged to engage in individual and group research projects. Students have the opportunity to present their work at Guilford’s Undergraduate Symposium (GUS).
“Faces and Faith: Muslim American Portraits”
Our project delves into college students’ experiences learning about the Islamic faith through classes at Guilford College. The images themselves would be a glimpse into that student’s identity as a student, while a short selected quote from the student reveals more about their experience learning about Islam and what they took away from it, or how it’s changed their perspectives on the Islamic faith, or perhaps the world as a whole.
“Sabbath and the Architecture of Time”
Has time poverty in America lead to a degradation of the Sabbath? Throughout my paper I will explore religious constructions of “eternal time” through the academic lens of Abraham Joshua Heschel (a Jewish scholar) and Thomas Kelly (a Quaker scholar). I will ask the question: How does one live when present to “eternal time” (in a Jewish context as well as in a Quaker context)? Do communities and individuals suffer when deprived of rest on the seventh day? The 8 hour work day has been replaced with the 12+ hour day, and texts from the Voluntary Simplicity Movement, such as Take Back Your Time: Fighting Overwork and Time Poverty in America explore the issues of time poverty through a secular lens. My paper is a work of intention, a query about experiencing time rather than spending it.
“Approaching the Unapproachable: Success and Failure in Abraham Abulafia”
This semester, I am engaging in a thesis on the thirteenth century Kabbalistic mysticism of Abraham ben Samuel Abulafia. I am looking at a period of his life in which Abulafia’s meditation and mystical experience led him to compose a number of prophetic works as well as engage on a mission to meet with Pope Nicholas III. This mission, which he single-handedly undertook on behalf of the entire Jewish faith, was seemingly unsuccessful. The study will be exploring the implications of the seeming failure of this mission on Abulafia’s discourse by looking at translations of his writings, discourses directly on Abulafia by Moshe Idel, and on Jewish mysticism and philosophy in Abualfia’s time.