Kuala Lumpur dreamin'

Arrived in Malaysia a few days ago for a conference at IIUM..... the campus is huge and majestic. send your brightest kids here.

The book shop is a far more boring place than it was a few years ago, where are the piles of ancient stuff?

Bizarrely finding the more mature students and alumni to be more clued up and hungry.

Enjoying all the juices at the mo, i have no idea about the malay language and generally consume whatever they give me, its all good. Well that a lie, today a got jhalled by some over the top south indian nosh. aaah well we live and learn.

Bumping into nonrandom funky types on a regular basis.

Picked up two books of note from a japanese book chain ?!? once i landed.

One was a selection of essays in dedication to Syed Hussein al Attas (who penned The Myth of the Lazy Native, The Sociology of Corruption and Intellectuals in the Developing World). a good constellation of contributers.

The second was by the Consumers Association of Penang(CAP) , a Halal and Haram food guide. its quite deep, with no hgolds barred, defniately something to circulate around the uk.

Came back into town today with someone from Sisters in Islam, a pseudoummahto feminist type with strong views on where her country is heading. seemed a little conused, im sure theyll find their place eventually, if they already havent. reviews that ive heard of them vary a lot, but im weak, i have a soft spot for sisters no matter how prog rock they reckon they are. doh! keep having to remind people to step back and look how far the country seems to have come, albeit as a rather top down state... but its human nature to draw comparisons with more 'advanced' places.

At the conference i was expecting more social science/humanities types... or at least fiqui types with playful dispositions.... we were discussing the higher objectives of the sharia when a sister from the audience goes on about 'we dont wanna become like the Christian faith, with our faith a shadow of its model self through all this adaptation to western systems.'

I mean come oooooon.

People sweated blood to establish IIUM, an advanced hybrid institution to nourish an integrated islamic knowledge culture, several of the experiments seems to have gone belly up, while this one still has some gas in the tank..... and you come up with some london isoc level disourse....grrr

Oh well, it takes all sorts. I've learnt a lot from the past two days and met some people that i will iA continue to know.

It really gives hope that people think about such a range of issues(CSR, whistle blowing, bioethics, economic culture, penal systems, history) and relate them the the realisation of the Maqasid. But do these urban educated ummahtic types have much 'traction' in the outside Ummah? i fear not, but we'll have to see how the meanings spread through the communities.

I chatted maqasid with a madrassa teacher in rural, river eroded Bangladesh the other day...he seemed to recognise what i was talking about. the Maqasid are mind broadening, thats just the coockie for us.

The range of knowledge adventurers here(IIUM) is vast, as i mentioned before... the older people seem to have their heads screwed on, they honour this knowledge movement by their intellectual scrutiny, attitude and vigour. Its what they do next that adds greater strength to the entire point of the institution. They teach, learn and communicate with a really rational conception of ummah at the heart of things.

This enculturation process can only happen with time, its deeper that the uk brit muslim isoc fetish, as we can see philosophical carry through in the careers of the students.... the best dont dissappear into the ranks of wage slaving or capitalistic banks and consultancies. They seem to have an internal guidance system.

How much of this is seeded at the uni and how much of this is nascent personality?

Theres was a cute Ayatollah from london here aww.

gtg and piddle about.

1 comment:

nai said...


thanks for coming to our country and attend our programe as well presented ur paper...

to tell the truth there is a lot of things that i believe have to be improve-- mostly we wanna apologized, thousand for the 'worst'- translation,

but importantly i believe in action oriented, maqasid conference just as a field to gather all the scholars as well non to discuss critically the wider concept of maqasid. But, all of that will be just a 'talking' if it didnt; be applied towards the society. In addition also, we really hope someday they will be more research done around the wider understanding of Maqasid.