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4734
The Islamic Element of Al-‘Adl in Critical Thinking: the Perception of Muslim Engineering Undergraduates in Malaysia
Abstract:
The element of justice or al-‘adl in the context of Islamic critical thinking deals with the notion of justice in a thinking process which critically rationalizes the truth in a fair and objective manner with no irrelevant interference that can jeopardize a sound judgment. This Islamic axiological element is vital in technological decision making as it addresses the issues of religious values and ethics that are primarily set to fulfill the purpose of human life on earth. The main objective of this study was to examine and analyze the perception of Muslim engineering students in Malaysian higher education institutions towards the concept of al-‘adl as an essential element of Islamic critical thinking. The study employed mixed methods approach that comprises data collection from the questionnaire survey and the interview responses. A total of 557 Muslim engineering undergraduates from six Malaysian universities participated in the study. The study generally indicated that Muslim engineering undergraduates in the higher institutions have rather good comprehension and consciousness for al-‘adl with a slight awareness on the importance of objective thinking. Nonetheless there were a few items on the concept that have implied a comparatively low perception on the rational justice in Islam as the means to grasp the ultimate truth.
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References:

[1] Don E. Kash, "Engineers as Revolutionaries", in Social, Ethical, and Policy Implications of Engineering, Joseph R. Herkert, Ed. New Jersey: IEEE Press, p. 55, 2000.
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[3] Ibn Manzur, Jamal al-Din Muhammad bin Mukrim, Lisan al-ÔÇÿarab, Beirut: Dar Sadir, vol. 11, pp. 430 - 436, 1990.
[4] Murtada al-Zubaydi, Muhammad bin Muhammad, Taj al-ÔÇÿArus Min Jawahir al-Qamus, vol. 8, pp. 9 - 12, n.d.
[5] Ahmad bin Muhammad bin ÔÇÿAli al-Fayyumi, al-Misbah al-Munir, Beirut: Maktabah Lubnan, pp. 150 - 151, 1987.
[6] Majid Khadduri, The Islamic Conception of Justice, Baltimore and London: The Johns Hopkins University Press, p. 11, 1984.
[7] See: Murtada al-Zubaydi, op.cit., vol. 8, p. 9 and Ibn Manzur, op.cit., vol. 11, p. 430, 1990.
[8] Al-Ghazzali, Abu Hamid, Ihya ÔÇÿUlum al-Din, Beirut: Dar al-Kutub al- ÔÇÿIlmiyyah, 3rd ed., Vol. 3, p. 55, 2002. Zulm is also etymologically related to the notion of darkness and gloom that denies one-s basic right. As such, zulm is often interpreted as oppression although in reality it encompasses a broader and deeper meaning. See: Mahmoud Ayoub, "The Islamic Concept of Justice", in Nimat Hafez Barazangi et.all. (Eds.), Islamic Identity and the Struggle for Justice, Gainesville: University Press of Florida, p. 22, 1996.
[9] In the Islamic law of inheritance, a woman inherits half of what her male counterpart inherits. However, this inequality in the distribution is considered fair because a woman has no financial obligation and the economical responsibility lies on the shoulders of the man in fulfilling the needs of his family. See: al-Nis─ü- (4): 176.
[10] Al-Kindi, Ya-qub bin Ishaq, Rasa-il al-Kindi al-Falsafiyyah, ed. Muhammad ÔÇÿAbd al-Hadi Abu Ridah, Cairo: Matba-ah Hassan, 2nd ed., pp. 30 - 36, 1978.
[11] In fact al-Kindi considers justice as the central of all virtues (such as wisdom, courage, temperance and others) for its function as the balancing and coordinating instrument whenever the other virtues come into operation. See: Majid Khadduri, op.cit., p. 82, 1984.
[12] Rob Niewoehner, "Critical Thinking in the Engineering Enterprise", The Magazine for Professional Engineers, Washington D.C.: the National Society of Professional Engineers, pp. 16 - 17, November 2008.
[13] Board on Manufacturing and Engineering Design, Theoretical Foundations for Decision Making in Engineering Design, Washington D.C.: National Academy Press, pp. 8 - 11, at The National Academies Press: http://www.nap.edu/openbook.php?record_id=10566&page=8, 12 October 2011.
[14] S. Waqar Ahmed Husaini, Islamic Environmental Systems Engineering, London: The Macmillan Press Ltd, pp. 7 and 72, 1980.
[15] See: Ibid., pp. 8 - 9.
[16] Muhammad Fazl Ur Rahman Ansari, The Quranic Foundation and Structure of Muslim Society, Karachi: The World Federation of Islamic Missions, Vol.1, p 249 - 241, 2008.
[17] Jamal al-Banna, Nazariyyat al-ÔÇÿAdl Fi al-Fikr al-ÔÇÿUrubiy wa al-Fikr al- Islamiy, Cairo: Dar al-Fikr al-Islamiy, pp. 95 - 98, n.d..

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