m o z a m i d

October 13, 2009

‘Adab’ defines Islamic education

Filed under: Uncategorized — mozamid @ 4:47 am

Tuesday October 13, 2009

‘Adab’ defines Islamic education

IKIM VIEWS
By DR MOHD SANI BADRON Senior Fellow/Director, Centre for Economics and Social Studies, IKIM

Imparting knowledge with a moral purpose aims to produce a good man, an individual who improves in adab, whether mentally, spiritually or morally.

IN HIS essay Modern Education and the Classics, T.S. Eliot aptly observed that “to know what we want in education we must know what we want in general. We must derive our theory of education from our philosophy of life”.

In the same vein, a Muslim must think out his ideas about education as grounded upon the worldview and sources of Islam.

The Prophet Mohamed stated that “my Lord instilled adab into me, and so made my education most excellent”.
The tradition has been recorded in various authoritative sources, among which are al-‘Askari’s Jamharat al-Amthal, al-Sam‘ani’s Adab al-Imla’, and al-Sarqasti’s al-Dala’il.
Education couched in ta’dib – or imparting knowledge with a moral purpose (adab) – has since been employed by various learned authorities.

These include the leading grammarian of Quranic-Arabic, Abu Ishaq al-Zajjaj (d. 311/923).

The purpose of knowledge, which is progressively inculcated in Islamic education, should aim to produce a good man or a man of adab, whatever one’s profession or skill.

Modern Muslims tend to restrict adab to social etiquette. On the contrary, Dr Syed Muhammad Naquib al-Attas has demonstrated in his works that the original usage of adab in the history of Islamic intellectual and religious tradition covers fundamental concepts of its worldview.

Originally, adab referred to the inviting to the banquet. In Arabic language, both the act of inviting (adab) and the banquet (ma’dabah), are derived from the same root word a-d-b.

The idea of a banquet implies that the people who are present are deserving of the honour of the invitation of the host. They must be people of “refined qualities and upbringing”, who are expected to behave, as befits their station, in speech, conduct and etiquette.

In other words, the term adab implies not only the idea of noble and gracious company but also that the food be partaken of in accordance with the rules of refined conduct, behaviour and etiquette.

The term adab is now applied and used in a deeper and wider sense: the inviting of human beings to the acquisition of praiseworthy qualities and disposition (al-mahamid), and forbidding them from acquiring such as are evil (al-maqabih).

Adab includes the disciplining of one’s mind, the acquisition of good qualities and attributes of the soul, and the performing of correct or right actions, as against erroneous or wrong ones.

As such, Islamic education embraces every activity by which an individual improves in adab, whether mentally, spiritually or morally.

In short, adab, so applied and used, signifies one’s good discipline of manners, good breeding and polite accomplishment.

According to Muslim lexicologists, adab may also be specified as zarf, or excellence of mind, manners, address and speech.

They give as examples of zarf a good manner of taking or receiving what is given, the performing of generous or honourable actions, and the practice of what is praiseworthy both in words and actions.
Another example of one’s excellence of manners is the honouring of one’s superior or elder, and being gentle, courteous or civil to one’s inferior or he who is younger.
A comparative study conducted by F. Gabrieli has found that adab in the sense of mode of conduct is roughly equivalent to the Latin urbanitas, which means high quality of soul, good upbringing, urbanity and courtesy.
It is the disciplinary action, the selective acquisition, the correct performance, and the qualitative preservation.
Adab, therefore, signifies an ability which preserves a person in whom it exists from what would have disgraced him.

For adab is the rule of discipline to be observed in the exercise of a function.

Hence, Sharif al-Jurjani (d. 843/1413) interprets adab as “special knowledge that guards one against all types of error (ma‘rifatun ma yuhtaraz bihi ‘an jami‘ anwa‘ al-khata’).”

By employing the term hirz in that definition, Islamic education is conceived in al-Jurjani’s thought as a “fortress” which shields one from all kinds of wrong action.
Indeed, according to ‘Izz al-Din Kashani’s Misbah al-Hidayah, “the term adab expresses the beautification of akhlaq (moral traits) and the refinement of words and acts.

“Acts are of two kinds: acts of the heart, which are known as intentions (niyyat) and acts of the bodily frame, which are known as actions (a‘mal).

“Moral traits and intentions pertain to the inward, words and acts to the outward”.

“Hence,” Kashani concludes, “that person observes perfect courtesy whose outward and inward are adorned with the beautiful qualities of the moral traits, words, intentions, and actions. His moral traits accord with his words, and his intentions conform to his actions. As he appears, he is, and as he is, he appears.”

Finally, there is a tradition of the Prophet narrated by Ibn Mas‘ud, which is called the Quran ma’dabatullah fil ard. This refers to the fact that the Quran is a means which God has prepared in the earth for men’s learning good discipline of the mind, which defines education.

http://www.thestar.com.my/columnists/story.asp?file=/2009/10/13/columnists/ikimviews/4701281&sec=ikimviews

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October 12, 2009

R & W & C

Filed under: Uncategorized — mozamid @ 3:17 am

Hurdles come and go, and we tend to forget our dreams, our goals and our desires. Adaptation to the new environment does take a lot from you. Therefore, it is partially important for you to always contemplate on yourself.

Iqra’(recite) is the first verse that was revealed to our prophet Muhammad peace be upon him. Allah also revealed later in Suratul Qalam verse 2; which sounds as follow: “ By the Pen and the (Record) which (men) write”.

These are two verses that are deep in impact. It a very simple verse but yet very useful and meaningful. Analyzing those verses make one realize that the best way to contemplate ourselves is through pen and papers. Only through writing and recording we know our progression and we know what to improve.

Many individuals are lazy to write, lazy to write their goals and aims in this life. Therefore make them inefficient in planning a good life. By putting ourselves in this group is a danger decision as it actually too risky for this life and hereafter. Writing and recitation are correlated. Some writings are open for public whereas some are just for your personal and close friends and relatives to read them.

Writing provides check and balance, only through writings we can see and we can recite. Contemplation through writings is so much useful as you can clearly see where you are and what you’re really doing. You’re then capable to come out with plans to overcome risks or to reevaluate the whole process involved.

Writings require responsibility from the writer. A responsible writer will always tell the truth and write something based on facts and trustworthy sources of information in avoiding misunderstanding or misconception. Writings are useful for everyone either for reference or for guarantee of peace and harmony.

As hurdles passes by, we tend to adjust our life to best suit the situation. And this is the real test for you. Think like this, by adjusting your way of living, you tend to forget or unintentionally leave your aims and goals of your life behind.

How would you know that you are still in the path of reaching your aims and goals if you are write not a single word of it? Writings actually make you more focus and more responsible in whatever field you are in. By writing, it does not mean that you need to write everything. Just write what you want in the language that you understand better. Writings make you bigger than what you are and fits you as a khalifah.

Till then, may one day I have my own kingdom of Knowledge Empire.

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