Special event highlights at Earl Lectures

January 8, 2010

An exciting variety of special events, from film screenings to gallery openings, rounds out the 109th annual Earl Lectures and Leadership Conference at Pacific School of Religion. The offerings, open to the public, invite artistic interpretation of the conference’s theme, “Spiritual but not Religious: Chasing the Divine.” All events are free unless otherwise noted.

The week begins with a lecture by Munir Jiwa, founding director of the Center for Islamic Studies. He will present “E Pluribus Umma: Secular Fundamentalism and the Aesthetics of Islamic Norms” (January 25, 5:30 pm, Badè Museum, 1798 Scenic Ave.).

Grammy-nominated blues-jazz singer Linda Tillery and the percussion-driven Cultural Heritage Choir will perform their unique rhythm-based fusion music (admission $20 or free for conference registrants, January 26, 7:30 pm, Ecumenical Center of Berkeley, 2401 LeConte). The concert will showcase the musicians’ and vocalists’ rich African American musical roots and the vibrant tradition of call and response.

An informal discussion, Theology on Tap, invites lecture attendees to discuss spirituality inside and outside the context of religion with plenary speaker Melissa Wilcox (January 27, 9 pm, La Val’s, 1834 Euclid Ave.). Pizza and beer at a local PSR haunt (no host) will round out casual mingling with speakers, attendees, and students.

PSR presents a sneak-preview viewing of the documentary Lord Save Us from Your Followers (January 27, 8 pm, Ecumenical Center of Berkeley). The film presents conversations with people on the street and leaders of the “Culture Wars” to challenge the assumption that talking about faith must be divisive. A moderated discussion will follow the screening.

The multi-media juried art show “Muse/Reuse: Visual Reflections on Sustainability” opens with refreshments and live jazz (January 28, 5 pm, Badè Museum). The group show addresses the confluence of environmental sustainability and religious engagement with the themes of consumption, population, and nature.

The Earl Lectures and Leadership Conference include three days of lectures, workshops, and special events. For complete details and to register, see psr.edu.

Earl Lectures