‘Atheist to Zoroastrian’: New living learning community connects students of different religious traditions

Many students know that Duke’s motto is “Eruditio et Religio,” but what do the words meaning erudition and religion truly look like in practice? A new living learning community is bringing the phrase to life. Eruditio et Religio, also called E&R, aims to help students build relationships with people of varying religious traditions and work together for a common good. The program includes a house course that explores religious diversity as well as community service opportunities. “Today we need to come together across the religion line,” said Christy Lohr Sapp, associate dean for religious life, who helped create the living learning community. “I think we need to make space in our country for a diversity of expression. At Duke, we work hard to create an environment in which students of any religious traditions feel important.” The program does not require membership or participation in a specific religious affiliation. Its website notes that it “welcomes all applicants—Atheist to Zoroastrian.” Students will live together in Blue Ridge House on West Campus in Keohane Quad 4B and will participate in shared meals, house events, retreats, trips and religious exploration.Sophomore Callie Keen, who has helped design E&R, explained that it grew out of the Interreligious Scholars Program, which Lohr Sapp launched with the intention of eventually expanding it. “The idea was to foster interfaith dialogue and understand the importance of that,” Keen said.  “We always envisioned that as a living community.”She explained that E&R is structured around three main topics—education, intentional living and civic engagement. The education component will consist of the house course, which focuses on providing an introduction to diverse religious traditions and minimizing stereotypes. Intentional living involves the actual dorm community and forming relationships through dinners together, in which students can gain an understanding of each other’s faith.


Source: ‘Atheist to Zoroastrian’: New living learning community connects students of different religious traditions – The Chronicle

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