Monday, August 29, 2011


Another topic that seems to be liked by Indonesian colleagues in Medan was what I called Heart-to-Heart Education, or before this, Heart-to-Heart Method in Learning-Teaching Process. During the July trip, two universities requested me to talk on this topic. The first was Universitas Pembinaan Masyarakat Indonesia (UPMI) and the second was Universitas Muhammadiyah Sumatera Utara (UMSU).

Prior to this, in May 2009, I have actually delivered this topic for the first time in Medan as a keynote address at an International Conference at UMSU. Subsequently in August the same year, Universitas Asahan Sumatera Utara invited me to deliver the same at the university. Altogether, to date, it is already four times that I was asked to talk on this topic in Medan. And the colleagues in Medan seem to still like it.

Actually, the idea on this topic is not new. I first threw the idea in October 1984 at One-Day Forum on Integrated Education, organised by Education Centre, National University of Malaysia (UKM). In my solicited paper entitled "Some Integrated Aspects of Knowledge in Islam: The Case of Islamic Development Knowledge" (in Malay), I pointed out that Allah SWT has bestowed human beings with two tools of learning and teaching, viz. `aql (literally, the mental) and qalb (literally, the heart).

However, I said, more popular tool used is the `aql, and seldom the qalb, whereas from the story of Prophet Khidr and Prophet Musa, as well as the story of Syeikh Abdul Qadir Jailani, teaching-learning process via qalb was more effective than the `aql.

Unexpectedly, my idea attracted a hot discussion, some in favour of me and some others against me. As those who were speaking were too many, and I myself was actually still not having an in-depth knowledge on the idea then, I changed to become an interested observer rather than a defender. Moreover, another panel who was against my idea was the one I respected, the former Rector of International Islamic University Malaysia, Professor Muhammad Kamal Hassan himself. He was a lecturer of Islamic Studies at the National University of Malaysia then.

I reiterated my idea in public only 17 years later, in 2001, in my Professorial Lecture which was then subsequently published by USM Publisher in 2003. In this lecture, I talked specifically, inter alia, on the Teaching-Learning Method of Islamic Development Management. This time was no more based on merely theoretical and preliminary idea. It was rather based on my practical experiments of the usage of the heart-to-heart education method in my own teaching process. Subsequently, beginning from 2005, I used it in the teaching of the ISDEV graduate courses. The result was fantastic as is reflected by the interest of the Medan colleagues who have the intention in implementing it in their respective universities. Alhamdulillah!

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