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Terms: Use & Misuse
Islamic Terminology
Getting acquainted
Islam & West
Collegiate Times Article

Islamic Seminar:  Understanding Islam & Muslims

Islamic Terminology: Its use and Misuse
Getting acquainted with Islam and Muslims
Islam and the West
Questions & Answers

Tuesday, October 16, 2001
Old Dominion Ballroom - Squires Student Center
Virginia Tech

Organized by the Islamic Student Assembly of VA Tech

Moderator Introductory Remark - Dr. Halide Salam, Professor of Fine Arts in the Department of Art at Radford University.

Islamic Terminology: Its use and Misuse - Dr. Sedki Riad, Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Virginia Tech.

Getting acquainted with Islam and Muslims - Mr. Mark Hamza Dougherty, Ph.D. Candidate in the department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Virginia Tech.

Islam and the West - Mr.Walid Faris, Ph.D. candidate in the department of Engineering Science and Mechanics at Virginia Tech.

Questions and Answer.

Moderator Concluding Remarks.
 

Video:

Presentation         Q & A Session          NBC Interview


 

Seminar's Moderator Introductory Remark

Dr. Halide Salam

Professor of Fine Arts in the Department of Art at Radford University
<hsalam@radford.edu>

Bismillah ar Rahman ir Rahim (In the name of Allah the most Compassionate and the most Merciful)

Good evening and peace be on you.


     In light of the recent events, we, members of the Muslim community of Blacksburg, Virginia feel obliged to hold a seminar whereby we can reaffirm and reiterate the grief and pain we share with our fellow Americans, as well as, express the position Islam takes on wanton destruction of the innocent, of women and of children. We do this with a solemn and steadfast heart because our religion, Islam that teaches us to live in righteous and just conduct is under question.

      At this time I would also like to mention that this seminar would not be possible without the assistance of Virginia Tech, Blacksburg Electronic Village and the Blacksburg community. We thank them for their support and solidarity. You have touched our hearts by your gift of friendship and for making tonight’s event possible. I would however, especially like to thank you, my audience, for taking time off from your busy schedule to come here tonight. I know for some it is right at dinner time. I hope, InshaAllah, that our modest refreshments will tie you over for a little bit . Please feel free at any time to help yourself to refreshments that are placed at the back of the room.


3. Since this is the first of the many seminar/workshops that we hope to offer, we have decided to use a seminar format that consists of panelists and a question and answer session. Our panel tonight consists of Dr. Sedki Riad who is a Professor of Electrical, and Computer Engineering at Virginia Tech. Dr. Riad’s presentation is on: Islamic Terminology: Its use and Misuse.

Our second panelist is Mr. Mark Hamza (Dockarti) Dougherty. Mr. Dougherty is a Ph.D. Candidate in the department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Virginia Tech. His presentation is on: Getting acquainted with Islam and Muslims.

Our third panelist Mr. Walid Faris is a Ph.D. candidate in the department of Engineering Science and Mechanics at Virginia Tech. Mr. Faris’ presentation is on: Islam and the West.

I am Dr. Halide Salam, Professor of Fine Arts in the Department of Art at Radford University. I will serve as your moderator tonight. Some of us are educators others engineers, all Muslims, but none scholars in theology or in Islamic studies, law and jurisprudence. Tonight’s discussion will be in Understanding what is Islam the religion, who and what are Muslims and separating the myth for what is real. The presentations are in an outline form and at times summarized too tightly. We feel that this necessary because of time constraints and our own limited capacity regarding the material. We can attempt, nonetheless, to give you a realistic picture of what is Islam.


Tonight’s Seminar Format is as follows: 3 presentations, each 20 minutes long, followed by a ten minute period for questions.  At the conclusion of all the presentations there will be a 30-minute question and answer session that may be extended.  We will however, conclude at 9.30 p.m.

For those of you who would like to learn more, the Muslim community invites you to visits our Masjid (place of worship) either on Friday noon during our prayer time or at 2:30 PM, that is, after the prayer. You may pick up a copy of directions to the Masjid as well as Masjid visitation etiquette from the information table. Also there are Survey Forms that you may fill out that will help us to plan future events and address topics of interest.

4. Having given you all the necessary information regarding the structure of tonight’s seminar. I would like to open the event with a verse from the Qur’an which is very appropriate for the occasion. In chapter 49, verse 13 of the Qur’an Allah says (Translation of the Meaning):

"O mankind, We created you from a single (pair) of a male and a female, and made you into nations and tribes, that you may know each other. Verily, the most honored of you in the sight of Allah is (one who is) the most righteous of you. And, Allah has full knowledge and is well-acquainted (with all things)."

Let us start then with the intention of wanting to know each other in the true sense of the word and by this knowledge move towards a mutual appreciation of each other’s right to choose a moral code of life for themselves. For the Qur’an also says in chapter 11 verse118, (Translation of the Meaning):

“If thy Lord had so willed, He could have made mankind one people: but they will not cease to dispute.”

 


Moderator Concluding Remark - Dr. Halide Salam


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Last modified: 12/11/07