Clinical Assistant Professor Sikh & Jain Studies at Loyola Marymount University
Dr. Nirinjan Kaur Khalsa is Clinical Assistant Professor of Sikh & Jain Studies at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles, California. Her ongoing research investigates how the diversity of devotional practices in the Sikh diaspora respond to gendered and religious norms. As the first ever professor of Sikh and Jain studies she has organized annual Sikh and Jain conferences “The Music and Poetics of Devotion” (Feb 2016) and “Spiritual Warriors: (Non) Violence” (Feb 2017) with publications forthcoming. Nirinjan Kaur Khalsa currently serves on the Sikh Studies steering committee at the American Academy of Religion.
Abstract: Learning through Experience: Teaching Sikh and Jain Practices in a Catholic University
This presentation will explore the benefits of using Engaged Learning to teach Sikhism and Jainism in the University. Such a methodology enables students to not only learn about, but also experience these traditions firsthand through gurudwara and temple visits, seva, meditation, yoga, and other daily practices. This type of pedagogy offers students dynamic ways to engage with these traditions in the classroom and beyond. From student feedback I will illustrate how integrating Sikh and Jain perspectives and practices into their own lives enables students to dynamically enhance their own worldviews and move beyond tolerance toward mutual respect and understanding.