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Siegal Lifelong Learning

Religion + Philosophy

Religion + Philosophy

Mondays, March 20-May 8 | 10:30 a.m.-noon


Joe KonenLeader-Teacher, Off-Campus Studies


This book offers us a vehicle for a nuanced understanding of Islam. Carla Power, a Western reporter who grew up in several predominantly Muslim countries, writes of her dialogues with prominent India-born and now London-based Sheikh Mohammad Akram Nadwi. The dialogue enlightens us on a nonviolent understanding of Islam. The sheik shows us how he distinguishes between culture and politics on the one hand and religion and spirituality on the other. Book: Carla Power (2015), If the Oceans Were Ink: An Unlikely Friendship and a Journey to the Heart of the Quran


South Franklin Circle | Members: $82; Nonmembers: $97 | REGISTER >



Wednesdays, March 22–April 19 | 1:30–3:30 p.m.

Kristen Tobey, Visiting Assistant Professor, Department of Theology and Religious Studies, John Carroll University


This course investigates the rich religious history and contemporary religious demographics of the region we now call Ohio, which has served as an incubator for several well-known religious groups and significant religious modes. The timeline of the course will stretch from the ancient mound-builders into present day, though much of our material will come from the 19th century. During that century, Ohio was an important site for a number of religious groups including the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (Mormon Church), the Shakers, the Quakers, and the Amish. Also, during the 19th century, several Protestant groups developed and refined their proselytization styles in Ohio, and Cleveland was home to one of the largest Catholic populations in the United States, inspiring (false) rumors that the Pope intended to establish another Vatican in the area. 

The College Club of Cleveland | Members: $115; Nonmembers: $135 | REGISTER >


Thursdays, March 23-May 11 | 1:30-3 p.m.


Jim Lane, Leader-Teacher, Off-Campus Studies


Delve into the realms of science, mythology, spirituality, appearance, illusion and reality as they apply to our place in the natural world. The two novels we will read explore profound personal, societal, philosophical and religious questions.  Books: Siddhartha, Herman Hesse; Ishmael, Daniel Quinn


Laurel Lake Community Room | Members: $82; Nonmembers: $97 | REGISTER >

Thursdays, March 23-May 11 | 10:30 a.m.-noon


Ted Smith, Leader-Teacher, Off-Campus Studies


Between mid-400 AD to mid-600 AD, Ireland practiced a unique type of Christianity. After the fall of Rome there was no central authority directing the practice of religion, no official date as to when Easter was to be observed each year, etc. The Irish embraced Christianity (without bloodshed) while still upholding their Druidic traditions. Irish men and women were both priests and bishops alike. Humanity was seen as fundamentally good, an integral part of God’s creation. All of this was contrary to the writings of Augustine of Hippo, that men were born into sin, adopted as the official positions of Christendom. The Synod of Whitby in 664 AD favored the disciple Peter as the rock of the church as opposed to the disciple John, remembered as “listening for the heartbeat of God”. What would Christianity be like today if the Synod had decided differently?  Book: Listening for the Heartbeat of God, A Celtic Spirituality, The Reverend Dr. J. Philip Newell 


Hamlet Village | Members: $82; Nonmembers: $97 | REGISTER >


Tuesdays, March 28–May 30 | 6:30–8 p.m.

No Classes April 11 and 18


David Huston, History Teacher, Laurel School


This class is an opportunity to read, reflect, question, and converse with fellow inquirers who want to investigate important issues and ideas. Using the unique approach of St. John's College ("The Great Books College"), New Perspectives will emphasize very short readings done in class of accessible classic texts in literature and philosophy chosen to stimulate thought and conversation. No previous experience or class preparation necessary--just an open and curious mind! Required book: New Landscapes ($58); Touchstone Press.  A Note to Previous Attendees: These will be fresh selections for us to discuss.


Landmark Centre | Members: $90; Nonmembers: $110 | REGISTER >