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Faith in Art

Musbah Shaheen

One of the greatest debates I had with myself when I got in was about how religious this university is, and whether it will be awkward not to be religious on campus. Vanderbilt is a secular university, not affiliated with any religion or denomination. On campus, we have complete freedom to participate in any religious activity we choose. There is a myriad of student organizations that represent all different faiths and religions.

Faith in Art took place on January 22nd 2014 in the SLC

When I got to campus, I wanted to participate in an organization that fosters interfaith dialogue, because I wanted to be exposed to the different religions on campus. And there they were, members of the Interfaith Council on my first week on campus with a bucket of ice-cream right in front of Commons Center. I attended one of the Council meetings and was immediately hooked. Now I’m the Freshman representative of the Interfaith Council.

Ankita Khandai from Interfaith Council exec board

So the Interfaith Council is the umbrella organization of all religious groups on campus. We meet biweekly to have an interfaith dialogue about different issues. Some times the topics are controversial, but the conversations are always respectful.

Ann Mills performing a Hassidic Prayer

This week, we had an event that represents interfaith dialogue in the form of art. Different groups on campus participated in expressing their religion in form of singing, dancing, music and poetry. This was really one of the most interesting events I’ve been to so far.

Aleezah Merali and Waleed Shaban performing Ismaili Ginan

One upperclassman told me on my first week at Vandy, go to any organization meeting with free food. You might end up in something you like. My experience with the Interfaith Council has been overall rewarding. Not only have I been able to participate in intellectual dialogue, but also connected with all kinds of students, both first-year and upperclassmen.

Madhu Govind and Harini Suresh performing an Indian Classical Dance

Madhu Govind and Harini Suresh performing an Indian Classical Dance

Interfaith Council Swag

  • Alisha @ The Unvarnished Word

    I’ll make it to one of the InterFaith events one of these days!

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