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Islamizing the taleem ….. – 10 (Education and perception development)

25 Oct

(The writing that follows is my dialogue through email with a group on the Topic: Islamizing the Taleem and Tarbiyah of our children. I am maintaining the email format for ease of understanding as well as for maintaining originality of this dialogue.)

Assalamu Alaikum,

We talked about what is Haq (the truth) for us and why is it Haq. If it is from God who is the creator, the Almighty, all Knowing it is Haq for us, and why it should not be? A little doubt in this respect will land us in a very dangerous position as far as Iman (belief) is concerned. If it is from God, our creator and the creator of every thing, it has to be Haq.

I studied in the International Islamic University Malaysia. In my thesis if I had quoted Qur’an, that was taken as an established, unchallengeable and unquestionable statement of fact. Whereas in a western University or even in O/A’levels in Pakistan this will not be the case. For the west Qur’an is just another book ‘claimed by the writer’ to be from God, as such it will be like quoting any other book, and not an unchallengeable, established factual statement; and why should they believe it to be a fact, they do not believe in Qur’an being from the Creator. Probably a statement from Aristotle, Pluto, or for that matter Bertrand Russel, Michel Foucault and Noam Chomsky carries more weight than Qur’an. How does that sound? I am sure quite repulsive to all of us. So when we speak of any education or knowledge from the western perspective we should not expect it to be Godly at all. On the other hand if we look at the most important goal of education from the Islamic perspective taqwa or God consciousness is the prime objective of education in Islam. As I very clearly see if we follow the western methodology and literature for child’s education we are treading a very dangerous path indeed. We are not only not focusing on this most important goal, rather in fact taking the child on the opposite direction.

I will quote one example about effect of O/A level education on our children. This was narrated to me by a researcher doing his Master’s research. When a child of class 7 or 8 from a popular school (known for their Islamic approach to education) was asked about his view on the creation of human-being he responded. “Actually the human being has evolved from Ape. The Qur’an says Adam was directly created by God.” His belief was what Darwin had presented and is taught in his science book, but at the same time respected the teaching of Qur’an as well. Is it not enough of a warning for us? The Western approach to education and the Islamic approach are exactly diametrically at different poles. Literature developed by the west will most naturally be depicting the western concept of world and life and not Islamic. The thought structure or world view developed by others than God has been very interestingly metaphorized as the web of a spider which is the weakest of all the dwellings:
The example of those who take guardians (Aulia) other than Allah is like the example of a spider; it takes a house, but surely the frailest of houses is the house of a spider; if only they knew (Surah Al-Ankaboot: verse 41).

A spider’s web is also very deceptive as is the ways of those other than the God. In the case of our education it is the secular west. We are so easily deceived away from Islam by them, aren’t we? There are numerous ayat in the Qur’an which warn us not to take other than Muslims as our friends, and not to be influenced by the Christian and the Jew’s ways.

The objective of writing all this is to create realization that western education and western aids to education being used for the education of our small children will, with all the possibility, be creating adverse effects in their view of the world and thus on their personalities from the perspective of Islam.

‘there are two things we need to give to our children: roots to grow and wings to fly’

Br. Abid