Monday, March 21, 2016

Notes from Seminar Akhlak : Menuju Kesempurnaan Peribadi (part 1)


Alhamdulillah, last week I had a chance to attend 'Seminar Akhlak' organized by Gabungan Belia Institut Ibnu Al-Qayyim in UIA. I can say that the 6-hour trip from Dungun to KL was worth it as the content of the program were superb!  As their first time organizing this inaugural seminar, the programme secretariat did a great job.  Really wish that I could do the same in UTP, hopefully Biiznillah :)

Well, moving on to the content of the seminar, we were intrigued to listen to the 5 speakers, each of them specialized in their own field.  I have my own stand in seeking for 'ilm, that knowledge is knowledge, haq is haq, bathil is bathil.  We need to appreciate more in order to learn.  I'm not saying that our system of tarbiyah/education is inadequate,  it lined up everything that is essential.  Yet, as a Muslim progressing towards betterment,  we should put effort in closing the gaps, as the boundaries of knowledge reaches no horizon. Try to learn something about everything,  and try to be a master of at least ONE thing, that's a quote mentioned by Ustaz Zahiruddin Zabidi during his presentation.

Upon attending this seminar, I realized that akhlak is actually quite a rare topic to be covered as a whole.  Perhaps we've been regularly introduced to 'adab belajar' or 'adab berjemaah'.  But to see akhlak as an output of our aqidah and deeds (ibadah), I believe we shall realize that we are in a deep trouble right now.  The dreading condition of this society, is actually a product of a lot of variables including the family institution and the education system itself.

Here are some of the takeaways that I've jotted down during the seminar. I really hope that some of you can gain benefit from this. 

Ustaz Hasrizal Abdul Jamil : Epistemologi Akhlak dan Peranannya Dalam Pembentukan Tamadun Manusia

Akhlak itu diibaratkan sebagai buah sementara aqidah menjadi akar dan ibadah menjadi batang / dahan. Apabila buah mulai diserang penyakit dan tidak lagi lebat, apakah patut kita menebang pohonan itu? 
Atau periksa akarnya dahulu?

1.  Ustaz Hasrizal memulakan sesi dengan definisi akhlak yang diberikan oleh Imam Birgivi iaitu:

 ' akhlak itu adalah satu kekuatan yang berakar tunjang di dalam diri, terbit daripadanya perbuatan-perbuatan seseorang secara spontan dan mudah, tanpa memerlukan kepada fikiran dan pertimbangan. Ia adalah sesuatu yang boleh diubah-ubah, kerana adanya pembuktian syara' mengenai hal tersebut, malah turut disepakati oleh golongan pemikir serta eksperimen.'

- simply said, akhlak is something that happens automatically, other variables put aside. For example, helping somebody in need or respecting the elderly.
- Parents plays the main role in instilling the foundation of akhlak of their children, teachers will only act as supporter.  Therefore, it is very wrong to expect that the teacher will teach all manners needed by a human. The common sense starts at home.

2.  Ustaz also outlined 3 main pillars of akhlak which are ; Al-Nutq, Al-Ghadb and Al-Syahwah.
- Al-Nutq is the ability to think and to understand (kekuatan memahami).
- Al-Ghadb is a strong drive from inside to refuse bad things (apa yang menggerakkan jiwa kita untuk menolak kekejian).
- Al-Syahwah is a motivation from inside to achieve something (apa yang menggerakkan jiwa untuk mendapatkan apa yang sesuai).
- Within these 3 pillars, one must try to find a balance (wasatiyyah) in order to shape the character.
- As humans, these 3 elements are very dynamic, depending on our background, situation and circumstances.

3. With regards to our current education system, the speaker shared some of his thoughts :
- in the early years of childhood, let your kids play - that is the essence of our character shaping.
- Quoting Sheryl G. Feinstein in her book 
' instead of thinking of the adolescent brain as a house that is completely built and only needs to have furnishings added, we need to think of the adolescent brain as a house that is only framed and still needs walls, wiring and a roof'.

Ustaz Hasrizal's presentation mainly covered the meaning of akhlak (from Imam Birgivi and Imam Al-Ghazali's point of view) and the pillars that functions as the basis of character shaping. All throughout the lively session, he used examples from the education system in Finland to be compared with Malaysia.

Dr. Sofiah Samsudin : Institusi Kekeluargaan Sebagai Pusat Pendidikan Akhlak Terawal

Dr. Sofiah's presentation is something new to me. Yes, it somehow relates parenting with character and moral shaping, but the way Dr. Sofiah presented it gives the urge that the preparation starts from now on.

1.  Institusi kekeluargaan sebagai pusat pendidikan terawal?
- Keluarga adalah sekolah pertama anak-anak.
- Guru mereka adalah ibu bapanya
- Amanah sebagai pendidik, pembimbing dan pelindung mereka sepanjang hayat.

2. Ibubapa sebagai murabbi keluarga dan apa yang diperlukan : (OK, yang ni dah macam persediaan untuk baitul muslim)
- Melakar blueprint anak yang dicita-citakan
- Menentukan silibus untuk anak
- Mengajar fardhu ain dan aplikasinya
- Memberi nafkah yang halal dan nutrisi seimbang
- Mengajar membaca Al-Quran, memahami, mengamal dan menyebarkannya.
- Membuang sifat buruk dan menanam sifat baik

3.  Asas perkahwinan berdasarkan Quran dan Sunnah (menurut Dr. Jawiah Dakir)
- Iman dan taqwa
- Cinta dan kasih sayang (Mawaddah & Rahmah)
- Pergaulan yang baik
- Amanah tugas & tanggungjawab nafkah
- Keadilan
- Pendidikan & pembentukan peribadi yang cemerlang
- Ketaatan dan kesetiaan

From these points, I realized that it'll take a lot from both sides, husband and wife in shaping the family. Dr. Sofiah reminded that sacrifice (pengorbanan) is very much needed in the early years. I still can recall her saying " kalau nak anak-anak bangun tahajud pukul 5, takkan ibunya nak bangun pukul 6?"

We determine the blueprint of our family and children. Also, do not forget the power of du'a, as He is the One who creates and hold our hearts.  Dr. Sofiah shared a du'a made by Prophet Ibrahim a.s asking for a pious (solehin) child.  And Allah granted his prayer by blessing him with Ismail, Ishaq, then followed by the next generation of Yaakob, right until our beloved Rasulullah s.a.w.  Our prayers do not only impact our child, it can go beyond generations, that's how impactful it is.

I returned from the program with the realization that there's lots to be done, in terms of preparation and learning. InsyaAllah I'll share some takeaway from the other 3 speakers in the next post.  

Take a look on what we started
Oh, spreading kindness all around
Don't you know it's so contagious
Take a hit and pass it down

Daughtry - Torches

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