Tuesday, February 24, 2015

ISDEV RESEARCH COLLABORATIONS ATTRACT MEDIA ATTENTION IN BRUNEI

On 30 January 2015, news of ISDEV delegates, Professor Muhammad Syukri Salleh, Dr. Zakaria Bahari, Dr. Wan Norhaniza Wan Hasan and Dr. Shahir Akram Hassan was published in the The Brunei Times newsapaper.

The four delegates who had their respective roles in doing research collaborations with researchers in Brunei Darussalam were given the opportunity to hold meetings and discussions in their respective areas of research study.

An excerpt of the news on Prof Syukri and Dr Wan Norhaniza in The Brunei Times

According to the Brunei Times, Prof. Syukri Salleh and Dr. Wan Norhaniza, who are embarking  on the research regarding Policies of Islamic-Based Development in the Context of Zikir Nation in Brunei Darussalam, had the opportunity to hold a series of discussions with their research-in-collaboration partners, Universiti Islam Sultan Sharif Ali (UNISSA) led by Dr. Siti Sara Haji Ahmad, Dean of Arabic Language and Islamic Civilisation.

Dr Wan Norhaniza (left) receiving gifts from the Rector of UNISSA Dr. Haji Norarfan Haji Zainal (centre)

The purpose of such meetings were to discuss the details of the Islamic-Based Development Index as an indicator to measure and evaluate the development of Brunei Darussalam based on Islamic teachings. Besides, the discussions they were also there to present their research papers related to Islamic-Based Development Index. 

It is felt that since the Islamic-based Index is considered to be something new in Brunei Darussalam, the impact of the research is of great importance and significance as it can help the country to gauge and achieve Vision 2035 of Brunei Darussalam.

ISDEV researchers at the Jabatan Perancangan dan Kemajuan Ekonomi (JPKE) Brunei Darussalam

Dr. Zakaria and Dr. Shahir Akram who were also in Brunei Darussalam for their research endeavours also held discussions with their research-in-collaboration partners. For Dr. Shahir Akram, this is his maiden visit to Brunei took the opportunity to discuss as well as collect data for his research on Application of Rukyah and Hisab in Southeast Asia under his inaugural grant that he was awarded with recently. Dr. Zakaria also did not miss a beat in embarking his research on Application of Istibdal Waqf in Development: A Comparative Study of Brunei Darussalam and Malaysia by holding joint discussions with his co-researchers from UNISSA.

Sunday, February 22, 2015

A NAS A WEEK - 4 JUMADA AL-AWWAL 1436

Anas ibn Malik reported: A man said, “O Messenger of Allah, should I tie my camel and trust in Allah, or should I untie her and trust in Allah?” The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, said, “Tie her and trust in Allah.” [Source: Sunan At-Tirmidhi; 2517, Grade: Hasan (fair) according to al-Albani].

Monday, February 16, 2015

ATTENTION ALL ISDEV STUDENTS: 22 FEBRUARY 2015 IS THE FINAL DATE!

Attention to all RISDEV (ISDEV Postgraduate by Research) and MISDEV (ISDEV Postgraduate by Mixed-Moode) students.

In view of the upcoming Chinese New Year holidays and the long weekend ahead, all students are reminded to proceed with the registration activities and the payment of fees for Semester II, Academic Session 2014/2015 immediately.The dateline for registration and payment of fees is on 22 February 2015.

Therefore, RISDEV and MISDEV students, who have yet to register and/or make the payments are advised to register and make the necessary payments prior to the expiration date to avoid the imposition of penalty by the Institute of Postgraduate Studies (IPS) of Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM) and/or any unwarranted complications later on.

Please take note the registration activity is to be done through USM campusonline.

Sunday, February 15, 2015

A NAS A WEEK - 26 RABI'UL AKHIR 1436

And We have certainly made the Qur'an easy for remembrance, so is there any who will remember?[al-Qamar, 54:17]

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

2 RISDEV STUDENTS DEFEND FINAL DRAFTS

Two RISDEV (ISDEV Postgraduate by research) students, Teuku Meldi Kesuma presented his PhD thesis while Ustaz Fakhruddin Abd Rahman presented his final Master Dissertation in front of 30 ISDEV members on 6 February 2015. ISDEV Director. Professor Muhammad Syukri Salleh and ISDEV Deputy Director, Dr Zakaria Bahari, lecturers as well as students attended the programme which took place at C06, Social Sciences Conference Room. 
Teuku Meldi was able to exhibit his mastery in the field of advertising 

First candidate, Teuku Meldi presented on "Kriteria-kriteria Periklanan Dari Perspektif Islam: Analisis Persepsi Pengguna Institusi Perbankan Syariah di Banda Aceh" (Advertising Criteria from the Islamic Perspective: Analysis of Islamic Banking Consumer's Perception in Banda Aceh). He is currently a PhD candidate under the supervision of Dr. Zakaria Bahari while Dr. Fadzila Azni Ahmad acted as his co-supervisor. Dr.Wan Norhaniza Wan Hasan evaluated Teuku Meldi’s final draft PhD thesis and gave her views and comments on how it could further be improved. 
Ustaz Fakhruddin is both knowledgeable and passionate about the development of Wakaf Kapitan Keling

The second candidate was Ustaz Fakhruddin Abd Rahman with his Master Dissertation on "Pembangunan Wakaf Kapitan Keling Pulau Pinang: Satu Penilaian" (Development of Waqf Kapitan Keling Pulau Pinang: An Assessment). Dr. Fadzila Azni Ahmad evaluated his final draft Master Dissertation. Ustaz Fakhruddin is currently a student under the supervision of Professor Muhammad Syukri Salleh.
Dr. Fadzila Azni - the Chairperson of the day.

Dr. Fadzila Azni Ahmad as the chairman for the day finally announced that Teuku Meldi's draft PhD Thesis and Ustaz Fakhruddin draft Master Dissertation were both eligible to be submitted to the Institute of Postgraduate Studies after making some corrections and improvements on their written works as suggested by the two evaluators. Both candidates had been given the mandate to submit the PhD thesis and Master Dissertation and encouraged to do so within a maximum of one month from that day.

Sunday, February 8, 2015

A NAS A WEEK - 21 RABI'UL AKHIR 1436

Uqbah ibn Amr reported: I met the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, and he said to me, “O Uqbah ibn Amr, maintain relations with those who cut you off, give to those who deprive you, and pardon those who wrong you.” Later, I met the Messenger of Allah and he said to me, “O Uqbah ibn Amr, control your tongue, weep for your sins, and let your house be sufficient.” Later, I met the Messenger of Allah and he said to me, “O Uqbah ibn Amr, shall I teach you some chapters the like of which have not been revealed in the Torah, nor the Psalms, nor the Gospel, nor the Furqan? Do not let a night go by without reciting them: He is Allah the One (112:1), and: I seek refuge in the Lord of the daybreak (113:1), and: I seek refuge in the Lord of the people.” (114:1) [Source: Musnad Ahmad 16999; Grade: Hasan (fair) according to Al-Haythami].

Friday, February 6, 2015

THE 7th ANNUAL LECTURE SERIES ON CONTEMPORARY ISLAM IN MALAYSIA

 The overall ambiance of C06 throughout the programme.

30 undergraduate students of "Religion in Asia" study programme from Agder University of Norway, were at ISDEV to participate in the 7th Annual Lecture Series on Contemporary Islam in Malaysia on 5 February, 2015. They were led by Professor Dr. Levi Geir Eidhamar. It was an annual occasion resulting from the signing of an Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between Universiti Sains Malaysia and Agder University of Norway sometime in 2007. ISDEV Deputy Director, Dr. Zakaria Bahari, served as Chairman of the program which was held at Social Sciences Conference Room, C06.

Shereeza, stressing a point on the historical background on the formulation of the Federal Constitution.

As usual there are two speakers slotted from the lecture series. The first speaker, Shereeza Mohamed Saniff, a RISDEV (ISDEV PhD by Research) student talked on "Sons of the Soil Policy in Malaysia" while the second speaker, Ustaz Taha Mohd Omar, also a RISDEV student, lectured on "Contemporary Issues in Malaysian Islam".
Dedicated and passionate about Islam, Ustaz Taha Omar giving his points of view
on current issues pertaining to Islam in Malaysia.

The second part was a truly lively and vibrant Question & Answer session. A number of the undergraduate Norwegian students were keen to get more details on the points shared by both speakers. Coming from a well-developed country with a conventional development paradigm, where Muslims are a minority, these students really took the opportunity to clear the air about their views on Islam and the Muslims. However the two speakers were able to tactfully tackle and answer the myriads of questions fielded by these students.
Never missing any of the trips, Prof. Levi has been an instrumental figure in the success of the lecture series
which is now in its seventh year.

Even Prof. Levi did not miss a beat as he too joined in expressing his agreement or disagreement to some of the points raised by the speakers. The differing perspectives and point of views however did not at all mar the cool, calm and friendly atmosphere that was upheld throughout the programme. 
Makhtina, one of the students, raised her questions on the penalties imposed on Muslims,
should a criminal offence be committed by them in Malaysia.

All in all it was truly an enriching experience for both parties. Akin to a crusade albeit on the academic route both speakers were thankful to Allah SWT for the help rendered in ensuring that they remained calm and were able to respond to the questions and queries asked by the participants. They were also grateful to ISDEV for the trust bestowed on them to disseminate information about Islam to the participants. Prof. Levi explicitly expressed his satisfaction to the two talks delivered that day and stated his commitment to bring his next year's batch of students to ISDEV, USM for the 8th Lecture Series on Contemporary Islam in Malaysia. To this, Dr. Zakaria echoed the same sentiment with an addition of in sha Allah!
The students and Prof.  Levi not missing a chance to take a group photo with ISDEV members.

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

A NAS A WEEK - 14 RABI'UL AKHIR 1436

O you who have believed, let not a people ridicule (another)  people; perhaps they may be better than them; nor let women ridicule (other)  women; perhaps they may be better than them. And do not insult one another and do not call each other by [offensive] nicknames. Wretched is the name of disobedience after (one's)  faith. And whoever does not repent - then it is those who are the wrongdoers [al-Hujurat, 49:11].

Monday, February 2, 2015

INVITING SHOWERS OF BLESSINGS IN THE JOB

ISDEV lecturer, Dr. Mohd Shukri Hanapi was given the honour by ‘Pusat Tranfromasi Insan' (Human Transformation Centre), Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM) to speak to about 200 staff on “Kursus Mencari Keberkatan Dalam Bekerja” (Course on "Blessings in the Job"). He was one of the two invited speakers to address the staff on 29 January 2015 at Dewan Kuliah A, USM.

Dr. Mohd.Shukri Hanapi took the trust bestowed on him seriously and sought to speak from the heart by focusing the topic on “Meletakkan Tasawur Tauhidik Sebagai Asas Penerapan Nilai-Nilai Islam Dalam Pekerjaan” (Laying the Tauhidic Worldview as the Basis of Instilling Islamic Values in Work).
Dr Shukri's first slide - presenting the title of his talk for the day

The time allocated to him by the organiser was well spent. Dr. Mohd Shukri wisely explained to the audience that the basis of obtaining blessings in the job is by instilling the tauhidic tasawwur (monotheistic worldview) element and the Islamic values in our daily work. As an example, if we have a strong relationship as well as a resolute belief in Allah SWT, we will never be complacent or ignore the instructions given by our employer. In fact  we will be conscious to regard every work as an act of worship and that every single deed that we do is continuously being monitored by Allah SWT. With a sense of monotheistic belief to Allah SWT, the feeling or intention to do any bad deeds in the job such as corruption can be avoided.Simultaneously the livelihood that is sought from the job as a means to support the family will get blessings from Allah SWT.
Dr. Shukri presenting his talk on Blessings in the Job.

He also added in his speech that one of the various ways to obtain blessings in the job is to improve practising sincerity in the daily tasks. Other ways included implementing the principles of Ittiba’ al- Sunnah that is committing deeds following the Sunnah of Rasulullah SAW; purification of the soul such as reading  a lot of the verses from the Qur'an; take blessings from the Qur'an by practising what is taught by the Qur'an; increase our selawat (greetings) to Rasullah SAW and seeking of forgiveness; scheduling practices of Sunnah as a sign of love for Allah SWT and His Messenger; remembrance of death; charity and trust in Allah SWT.
A good turn-out by USM staff who are eager to know more.

By sharing these methods, he however highlighted that the most effective method to invite blessings in the job is to get closer to Allah SWT through various religious practises using our body parts and belongings such as through the limbs, tongue, heart and soul as well as property. When we are close to Allah SWT, then Allah SWT will give us the attention sought and watch us with His mercy which in turn will draw out blessings from Allah SWT to us. He iterated that the methods presented that day were to be regarded as recommendations as there were scores of other practices that could also be done. However, the resolve to turn a new leaf to be a servant of Allah SWT who is bestowed a blessed life is more important. He also reminded all present to start it simple and easy but consistent so that blessings can be owned by all, in sha Allah.