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Islamizing the taleem ….. – 40 (towards a natural education scheme)

24 Nov

(My dialogue through email with a group on the Topic: Islamizing the Taleem and Tarbiyah of our children)

Assalamu alaikum,

Before I proceed any further I will like to clarify that my this discourse with this group is not for developing any intricate or definite system of education, like the one already in place which has been developed by the west as well as the religious clergy. My attempt here is to clarify the process of learning and how we should approach this. I believe, for those who are with me right from the beginning of discussion on the above subject and the exchange of emails on the subject ‘need to borrow John Holts books’ are clear on this. However for those who have joined later I may be sounding as if I am aiming for another complex or sophisticated education system. That is not so, mainly education is quite a natural process which we attempt to make complex, thus landing ourselves into a confusion and quagmire that we are presently in. The extent and the magnitude of the intricacy of the contemporary systems from the human perspective must have created beautiful and near to perfect human beings!! We see the result is just the opposite. Isn’t it? This is a clear indicator that we have gone the wrong way and have greatly faltered in this exercise.

Since I have some exposure to the efforts for the so termed ‘Islamization of knowledge or education’, myself being a part of a celebrated Islamic University for a substantial period, and focusing my research on the present efforts on the Islamizing of school education, I am a lot upset on the unnatural approach being taken by the majority of Muslim educationist in their efforts to develop school education or the process of education from Islamic perspective. I find great majority of them concentrating on the matter of curriculum and do not keep any critical view towards the present process or structure of education. There is hardly any emphasis on the natural learning processes. Greater majority of these dedicated educationists take the contemporary western education system as the only possible system, or near to perfect system and only focus on the matter being taught. It is here that they make the biggest and basic mistake. I also see most of the home-schooling parents faltering in the understanding of the process of education. Observing the activity at home-schooling end a brother commented that home-schooling is a very expensive alternative. From my perspective I sincerely believe ‘no it is not so’. The God created education system is equally efficient for both the moneyed as well as less moneyed. Should it not be? Please recollect Hazrat Jaloot’s story as narrated in Quran.

My whole exercise here is to try to explain the education system as created by the Creator himself, and to discuss on how we can efficiently and effectively take ourselves and our children through this process. I make this jasarat (initiative) or whatever alternate English word can be used for same, as Allah has kept me directed towards this cause for the last few decades, and for the last about twenty years I have involved myself in understanding of education from Islamic perspective. I am presenting my conceptions and ideas forward and request you all to keep on correcting me where you feel I am deviating from nature, or the teachings of Allah subhana wa ta’ala. But please realize that unless we make efforts nothing will materialize. And as I always remind, these efforts to define, or in the words of my brother Ammar ‘redefine’ education we may keep on proceeding the same way as we have been for a long time now. That is what I call putting the ladders on the wrong wall. Education is every ones business, is it not? That is why I expect all to participate.

May Allah bring sincerity and barakah (abundance) in our efforts. Education or Tarbiyah largely dictates the status of any nation. Can we escape the principle of GIGO? If we put garbage in we  only get garbage out.

Br. Abid.