Wednesday, July 1, 2015


Dato' Dr. Afifi Al-Akiti's talk on "Islam and Philosophical Wisdom"
It truly was a warm get together again for ISDEV Director, Professor Dr. Muhammad Syukri Salleh and Dato' Dr. Afifi Al-Akiti. In addition to Dato' Dr. Afifi's appointment as ISDEV Visiting Fellow since 2013, both Dato' Dr. Afifi and Prof. Syukri Salleh hailed from the same prestigious academic background - Oxford University. Although Prof. Syukri graduated from Oxford with his PhD in 1991, he had the chance to be closely acquainted and sealed a special bond of brotherhood with Dato' Dr. Afifi when Prof. Syukri was back in Oxford as Oxford Visiting Fellow in 2010. Dato' Dr. Afifi was (and still is) a lecturer at the much revered university. It was then that the strong ukhuwwah between Prof. Syukri and Dato' Dr. Afifi was affectionately sealed.

Recently, Prof. Syukri attended the Universiti Islam Malaysia Wisdom Lecture Series (U-WISE) and coincidentally met up with his friend Dato' Dr. Afifi once again. The U-WISE programme was held at Putrajaya Marriot Hotel, IOI Resort City, Sepang Utara on 17 June 2015 .
(L)- Prof. Syukri, UIM President Tan Sri Prof. Dr. Mohd Yusof Noor (white shirt), Dato' Dr. Afifi, UIM Senior Fellow Prof. Dr. Khalid Mohd Nor and UIM officer.
The participants of the programme consisted of academics from all over Malaysia. Being there on behalf of USM Vice Chancellor and as representative of USM, Prof. Syukri did not expect to be able to personally meet up with Dato' Dr. Afifi who was the main speaker for the inaugural U-WISE. Dato' Dr. Afifi delivered a lecture on "Islam and Philosophical Wisdom". However Dato' Dr. Afifi upon realizing that Prof. Syukri was there, took the opportunity to personally meet up and struck a conversation with him. One of the first things that Dato' Dr. Afifi asked from Prof. Syukri was to fill him in with the latest happenings on ISDEV.

Dato' Dr. Afifi takes his appointment as ISDEV Visiting Fellow seriously. He expressed his longing of coming back to ISDEV for a follow-up of the ISDEV Lecture Series that he delivered in 2010 on "Approaching Knowledge Secular and Religious". He is proud of his close association with ISDEV and unabashedly confess how closely attached he feels to ISDEV. Following updates from ISDEV's blog and website helped him to track ISDEV development. He also expressed his keenness and eagerly awaits for the appropriate time to be back at ISDEV in the very near future.
The close rapport and affiliation shared by these Oxford-don, Prof. Syukri with Dato' Dr. Afifi.
In the meantime, the U-WISE programme that Prof. Syukri attended was organized by University Islam Malaysia (UIM), which is the first university in Malaysia set up by the Conference of Rulers. UIM is a university founded through the activation of Kolej Islam Malaya (Malaya Islamic College) that was based on charitable funds and waqf , first introduced in 1955. The establishment of UIM is seen as a continuity to the traditions of charitable funds and waqf. UIM currently is offering short term courses in Islamic Studies and Islamic Banking for its December intake. Once its application to be registered as a public institution of higher learning is approved, UIM is poised to offer postgraduate courses at the Master and PhD levels.
UIM Mosque, Cyberjaya - with a capacity of 8000-strong congregation is designed to cater for the growing population of Cyberjaya. The 100 acre UIM campus is designed to be fully equipped with facilities such as the main Mosque building, Admininistration  office, VIP Lounge, Classrooms, Food preparation & dining area, ablution and toilets, travelator, multipurpose hall, staff quarters, indoor courtyard and an outdoor plaza.

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