The idea for the Islam And Science programme first came about when a member of the Norwich & Norfolk Muslim Association was delegated to attend the initial meeting for the Festival Of Science in May 2004.
It was felt that together with Muslims studying or graduating in science, most of whom are registered members of the UEA Islamic Society, an Islam And Science programme should be convened.
Islam throughout its history has held the pursuit of knowledge, wit the sciences, their study and development of great importance and benefit.
Scholars and scientists
Muslim scholars and scientists have contributed much, and still do, to scientific understanding, application and awareness.
Among other things, Islam has contributed greatly to the origination and guidance regarding the empirical method and rightful use of experiment.
In addition, whole avenues were opened up in the study and development of mathematics and chemistry as well as physics, biology and applied areas such as medicine, navigation, architecture, design and others.
All this came about directly from the inspiration of the revelation of the Qur'an itself, which contains many references to knowledge and guidance as to how to seek and find it.
This was further advocated by the prophet Muhammad, who often spoke of and taught the great benefits of knowledge as a means of improving one's religion, strengthening one's belief and drawing nearer to God - both for the individual and the community and society as a whole.
Spirit of the BA Festival
In the spirit of the Festival Of Science, as members of the Norwich community we feel the Islam And Science programme should give people the opportunity to learn how Islam has inspired the development of science past and present.
How it guides the desire to know and balances the pure, applied and moral aspects of scientific knowledge, so opening the way to understanding which is universal and available to all who seek it sincerely.
The BA Festival is a wonderful opportunity for Norwich and the people who live here to experience, to become involved in, and discover the world of science and how it inter-relates with our daily lives and experience.
By being contributing to what we hope will be an exciting, enjoyable and rewarding week of learning and discovery, we hope to offer something which is valuable and unique. An experience from which people may learn immediately or wish to continue learning about after the Festival is over.
Islam And Science programme
The Islam And Science programme begins with a interactive exhibition on the 2 to 3, September as part of the Try Science event at Norwich Cathedral.
This is to be followed by an afternoon open forum and debate in the City Council Chamber on Monday, 4 September, at 2pm around the question: Does science need to be incompatible with religion?
On Tuesday, 5 September, at 2pm there is to be an open talk on the issue of Islam, ecology and the environment which explores the living world and our responsibility towards it.
On Wednesday, 6 September, there is to be a presentation and workshop on Islamic medicine entitled Al Hejamah (cupping theory) Old Meets New or East meets West.
Lastly on Thursday in the Guildhall there is to be an introductory talk about the Islamic Religious Sciences.
These are fundamental to Islamic knowledge, understanding and guidance and are unique so like the other subjects to be addressed we feel and hope that this will be of genuine interest and a valuable part of the Festival as a whole.