Muslim scholar of Indonesia’s Pesantren Gontor speaks on Islamic educational institution in Brunei’s UNISSA

“An Islamic educational institution should be able to produce scholars who are able to identify himself between his surroundings and his creator; an ideal human being which should be the ultimate aim of Islamic education”

gontor_amal fathullah zarkasyi

Waqiuddin Rajak
BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN

THE Islamisation of knowledge could produce not just scholars but also future leaders who will be more Islamic-oriented in their conduct, said Dr Amal Fathullah Zarkasyi (pictured) during the second day of the Regional Islamic Higher Educational Institution Seminar (SEIPTI) yesterday.

“An Islamic educational institution would not reflect its ideal Islamic features if religion and science are approached dichotomously and secularly,” he said.

An Islamic educational institution should be able to produce scholars who are able to identify himself between his surroundings and his creator; an ideal human being which should be the ultimate aim of Islamic education, according to Dr Amal Fathullah.

unissa

He also highlighted the necessity of the awareness that since the world and everything inside it is created for the ease of humans as its khalifah, it should be utilised for the purpose of worshipping Allah SWT and not to be vandalised or victimised.

But in order for this to be realised, Dr Amal Fathullah urged Islamic institutions to integrate modern scientific knowledge with Islam and not to approach them in a dichotomous way as he believed that these modern knowledge are often brought about by people who have secular mindsets.

“For instance, there is this school of thought that says the world is its own creator and that God is not real while we as Muslims (know and believe) that the world is created by Allah SWT… our purpose is to serve and worship Him,” he said.

To support the integration of Islam and modern knowledge, Dr Amal Fathullah suggested a boarding school-like structure to be implemented within the educational curriculum of institutions.

unissaa“A campus life, which is an integration of three education centres – family, school and society – could reflect the lives of academic and intellectual communities who are able to develop their characters very well,” he said.

“Within that system, a teacher is also a parental figure to students and graduates, they provide guidance and counselling through social interactions and aside from that, there is also an integration between intra and extra-curricular learning,” he added.

“This would strengthen their mindset so they become efficient in their work… be it cognitive, affective and psychometric, aside from teaching them how to be independent,” he said.

Carrying the theme “Islamic Higher Learning Institution: Between Tradition and Contemporary”, the SEIPTI 2013 was concluded with a roundtable discussion session yesterday afternoon held at Universiti Sultan Sharif Ali (UNISSA).

Dr Amal Fathullah is a son of KH Imam Zarkasyi, founder of the popular Pesantren Gontor in Kediri, East Java, Indonesia.

The Brunei Times
Friday, December 6, 2013

http://www.bt.com.bn/news-national/2013/12/06/be-more-islamic-oriented-expert

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