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Islamizing the taleem …… – 8 (Mature and immature side of every child)

23 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.)

(A feedback from a sister on the group)

AA Br Abid

I try to follow your discussion. So far you have established that:

Perception is rationality
Importance of perception
Why we tolerate exposure to harmful media –our weaknesses
Tawheed should form the basis of education
Deen encompasses both dunya and akhira
GIGO – what we teach our children is what we will reap

I appreciate the time you put in to compose such deep and enlightening emails, addressing issues which really must be given high priority. We are fortunate to have a thinker in the group when most of us are too busy doing stuff, to be thinking about what is to be done. I hope one day the emails can be compiled into a book. I apologize it’s not workable that we all reply often due to other commitments.

a sister.

Assalamu Alaikum,

JazakiAllah sister Sabin for a very good feedback. I was planning to summarize my discussions and alhamdolillah that you have done better than what I may have done.

This whole exercise basically started as I wanted to express my view of what is learning; as I felt many of the home schooling families are committing the same mistake as schools’ are. I feel the deficiency lies in the understanding of the God gifted natural education process in any human being. This realization was substantiated by my research.

Reference to sister’s summary just a reminders of where I find her deviating from my conceptions:

aa) I meant ‘rationality’ or ‘logic’ is perceptual, and not ‘Perception is rationality’. A self proclaimed atheist will rationalize things as per his mind or thought structure, a person with concept of God as a passive entity will have his own logic structure, and a firm believer in a pro-active God will have his own. Presently the western secular logic or thought structure prevails and we see extensive literature developed by such people. We are putting our children through the same material. Please mind that no writing is ever neutral and carries the ideological reflections of the writer. This is not the opinion of the Muslim scholars only but of the western as well, and as well as of those who are well aware of the process of perception. In other words the rationalization process of a person will be dependent on his perception, or world view.

The main intention of my writing in this group is to develop in my audience some understanding of the learning processes of a human being, and how different learning interventions or teaching tools can affect a child’s personality. What we should be bothered about is the positive and negative effects of the educational methodologies and tools being used. We should be bothered about the quality instead of quantity. Too much of wrong thing is certainly that much harmful. As I firmly believe and as John Holt too observed through his pure practical research, that a child is a self learner. Then that famous hadith of the Prophet (May peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) which declares that a child is born on fitrah (natural inclination), it are the parents who make him Christian, Jew or Magian….. For me this natural inclination/disposition is a child’s natural logic structure. I see very clearly two personality sides. One, which is very mature and through that a child has already been blessed with a value system; probably that is related to the Ruh (soul). The other side is a very immature side where a child has no idea of the ways of this world. This includes child’s communication skills with the environment. Holt too observes same. Isn’t it really wonderful how amazingly a child exhibits his ego and strongly protests to our transgressing it’s self respect. Child never likes to be cheated, and probably many more. Then in just 18 months a child so intelligently learns to communicate quite efficiently with the outer world in world’s ways. Insha’Allah some time I will be discussing the five faculties of a human, namely:

1) Ruh (the spirit, which is from Allah),
2) the Qalb (or heart – the seat of all reflections, probably also the seat of the faculty of Furqan),
3) Nafs ( the real human entity),
4) Aql (the information processing unit), and,
5) Jism (the material body and its systems).

Ruh definitely must be the matured entity in a child. Which comes with the knowledge of the creator. Infact this discussion will be very interesting Insha’Allah.

A sister expressed her religious concern by stating that our children are amanah from Allah subhana wa ta’ala. I reminded her that it is not only the factor of amanah, it is the rights of the children which we should be concerned about. Normally we treat child as our property and very frequently we transgress their right of self respect. It is really very scary, as it causes a lot of damage to a child’s personality. I feel we will be dumbfounded when we will be shown the damage we cause to children’s personality clashing our egos with their’s. Does it remind parents of some such instances? Iqbal and John Holt are seen so concerned about this Ego or self respect in children. I observe the more religious we tend to be the more we are careless about this aspect. May Allah guide us in this very important aspect.

I should keep it short, or no one will heed or read. right / wrong?

Br. Abid.