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Muslim students promote awareness

Islam Awareness Week was held in an effort to spread knowledge about the often misunderstood religion

“Muslim Students Association gathers all Muslim students in Bradley and invites everyone to clarify the misconceptions in Islam, to enlighten and educate about what Islam is,” said Muslim Student Association President Bilaluddin Mohammed.

Tuesday night’s speaker, Dr. Sabeel Ahmed, a physician, discussed the topic  ‘Does God Exist?’ Ahmed used evidence from biology, biochemistry, physics and evolution to prove God’s existence.

“The universe is fine tuned for life to exist,” Ahmed said. “We have a physical self and a spiritual self, just like we have physical need and spiritual needs. Islam says to guide those we love, to guide humanity, that god does not become part of the creation, but send guides.”

Other lectures included Islam 101, Culture vs. Religion, Beauty of the Quran and Jihad: A just struggle or unjust violence. Each lecture focuses on a different misconception of Islam.

“We have a different speaker for each topic,” Mohammed said. “Speakers are born here [U.S.A.], and qualified on their topics. They are masters in both their field and religion.”

Mohammed said their goal was not to convert, but to help people to understand.

“Knowledge begins with intention, then listening, then preservation, then acting upon it,” he said.

Throughout the week there were many activities to grab students’ interest, such as Henna, Arabic Calligraphy and the Dawah table.

“The Dawah table means information booth, inviting people to learn, we also have a translation of the Quran,” Mohammed said.

Freshman computer science major Kailashnathan Thirupathur said he appreciates the scholars who came to give lectures.

“I came to know a lot about our Islam and their holy book, the Quran,” he said. “The way they explain [Ahmed] explained the existence of god was one of the highlights for me. They are doing a nice job by organizing Islam Awareness week to spread the knowledge of Islam.”

Students said they found this event enlightening.

“I think it is great that MSA is having this, it helps to clear up the misconception that many students have about Islam,” sophomore accounting major Amy Stramich said.