Hussein Rashid said death has power because people don’t understand it. Certain Muslim traditions, though, try to give death meaning.
Zeki Saritoprak is the Nursi Chair in Islamic Studies at John Carroll University. At 2 p.m. Friday in the Hall of Philosophy, he delivered an Interfaith Lecture on the Gülen movement and on Turkish culture and religion. Saritoprak is a contributing author of Turkish Islam and the Secular State: The Gülen Movement, edited by Hakan Yavuz and John L. Esposito.
Before discussing Gülen and his Hizmet movement, Saritoprak gave a brief outline of Turkish history, from the start of the Ottoman Empire to the founding of the Republic of Turkey. He spoke on how Islam appeared in Turkey and on the religiosity of modern Turkish people.
Ahmet Erdoğdular came to New York with the purpose of educating Americans about Turkish music and culture. Erdogdular is the founder of Makam New York, a nonprofit organization that spreads the rich cultural and musical history of Turkey by performing across the country.
Performers from Makam New York will join Erdoğdular at 8:15 p.m. tonight in the Amphitheater to showcase “An Evening of Turkish Music and Dance.”
The program will include music ranging from classical to modern pieces accompanied by whirling Dervish dancers. Erdoğdular explained in an email that Turkish music was traditionally passed from teachers to students, generation after generation. Erdoğdular’s father comes from a long line of such teachers dating back to the 13th century.
Hazrat Inayat Khan, the first Sufi teacher to the West, taught that true religion to a Sufi is the sea of truth and that all the different faith traditions are its waves. For a spiritual seeker like Sharifa Norton and Muinuddin Smith, Sufism is the best meditation tradition they could have wound up in.
The word “Sufi” is derived from the word “sofia,” which means wisdom. The practice and tradition of Sufism is about developing a deeper knowledge and understanding about life.
“It’s actually about finding the wisdom in life and everyday life, not just off in a cage,” Sharifa Felicia Norton said.
During Week Seven, Norton and her husband, Muinuddin Charles Smith, a professor, will return to Chautauqua to lead the Mystic Heart Program in the meditation traditions of Sufism. They will lead the daily morning meditation sessions and also the semi-weekly afternoon seminars Tuesday and Thursday. The afternoon seminars will focus on the Week Seven religion theme, “Creating Cultures of Honor and Integrity.”