Wednesday, April 27, 2011


With the genius Adi Putra
The third floor of the PWTC which I visited today has a more serious atmosphere, but interesting. Books sold here are academic books dealt by established publishers such as Oxford University Press, Cambridge University Press, Peguins, Wileys, Pearson, Taylor & Francis, Mc Graw Hill, etc. Searching books also much easier as many booths systemically put up their tags according to disciplines. The visitors too, from their appearance and face I think, consisting of relatively more serious visitors, most probably university students and lecturers.

I have bought books for two special collections.

The first was for my collection on the critiques of economics for the purpose of my study on the deficiencies of Islamic economics. They are the New York Times bestseller False Economy by Alan Beattie, Economyths by David Orrell, and The Undercover Economist by Tim Harford. These will add to my existing collection of the Confession of Economic Hit Man by Perkins. In addition, I also bought the award winning Learning From Heart by Daniel Gottlieb, to compare with the heart-to-heart teaching-learning pedagogy I have introduced and practised at ISDEV. All these books were bought at Penguins booth. I was fortunate to have a 40% discount from the Penguins Sales Executive Raj Kumar, instead of the normally 30%.

The second was for my collection on the grassroots or bottom-up approach to Islamic development. I came across a booth of Malaysia Turkish Dialogue Society (MTDS) which sells books on Turkey's Gulen Movement, many of which are authored by its pro-sufi leader M. Fethullah Gulen himself. I was told by Fateh, the booth's Sales Executive that M. Fethullah Gulen emulates the well-known Turkey's Islamic scholar and activist Bediuzzaman Said Nursi and attempts to interpret Islam into action suiting the modern world, especially through education. M. Fethullah Gulen, now at the age of 70's and residing in USA, do not marry as to him amal ma'aruf nahi mungkar is compulsory while marriage which he regards as not obligatory could probably lessen his struggle for amal ma'aruf nahi mungkar. Another sunnah that he does not practice is the keeping of beard as Turkey was apprehensive of such an appearance. After quite a detailed discussion with Fateh, I bought 5 books: Muhammad The Messenger of God - An Analysis of the Prophet's Life and The Statue of Our Souls - Revival in Islamic Thought and Activism both by M. Fetahullah Gulen, The Gulen Movement by Muhammad Cetin, Essays-Perspectives-Opinions M. Fetahullah Gulen compiled by Tughra Books, and Islamic Perspective on Science - Knowledge and Responsibility by Ali Unal. These books add to my collection on PAS of Malaysia, and Parti Keadilan Sejahtera, Persyarikatan Muhammadiyah and A.A.Gym's Daarut Tauhid of Indonesia.

The books I bought
Another interesting encounter on the third floor was my meeting with the genius Adi Putra. He, at the age of 12, has published a book on Seni Matematik Islam and a video. Requested by his father, Adi Putra demonstrated his brilliance by solving some mathematical questions. After observing it, I strongly believe that Adi Putra is not merely blessed by Allah SWT with the mental strength, but also, more important, is with spiritual strength. I am quite sure that the mathematical problems that he solved and the mathematical formula that he formulated are beyond the ability of an `aql. Interestingly, on the second last page of the book, he writes: "Adi halalkan!!! ilmu Adi dalam buku ini. Ilmu ini boleh dipelajari oleh pelbagai bangsa walaupun ianya berkonsepkan "Seni Matematik Islam" kerana Islam itu adalah agama damai". It strengthens my belief that Adi Putra is not merely a genius mathematician, but has a vision to strugggle with. His video too proves this. He is not only talking about mathematics, but also about everything, from social issues, to politics to religion to et cetera. I am thinking aloud alone how nice if ISDEV could bring him to USM for ISDEV Lecture Series. I am sure USM Vice-Chancellor too likes to meet and be with such a genius.

With Adi Putra's father
Going around the KL International Book Fair for me is not only searching for books. Instead, I also look for and discussed with publishers and distributors of the books. I look and discussed with potential publishers to explore the possibility of publishing with them books by ISDEV members. I look and discussed with potential book distributors to explore the possibility of them becoming the distributors of ISDEV published books. Among the publishers and distributors that I talked to were PTS Group General Publishing Manager Fauzul Na`im Ishak and PTS Editor Ikram Wazir, Gerakbudaya Assistant Manager Azizan Hamsin, Cengage Learning Senior Sales Executive Quah Chee Hong, Bookline Services Customer Service Executive Mohd Nizam bin Md Zain, Dar Al Wahi Publication (subsidiary of A.S.Nordeen) Manager Muhammad Thariq, and IBS Buku Manager Mohamed Mustafa. I think I already have in mind the right choice of these publishers and distributors, InshaAllah. What I need now is the book manuscripts by ISDEV members. So start writing!

With IBS Buku Manager Mohamed Mustafa, the most convincing and brotherly publisher and distributor

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