The writer, Zamena Manekia Manji (Bujumbura, Burundi) is a bookworm with a passion for writing and community service.
The world today is bombarded with information with billions of people having encyclopedias on their fingertips, quite literally. From googling why your 9-month-old isn’t eating well to resorting to the internet for information about Saturn, data and statistics about practically anything has become very accessible for everyone. This could sometimes be misleading, if we don’t have the right education and this is why it is vital to be educated in a post-modernist era.
Educational systems today across the globe are scrambling to cater to every child’s need for most parents of young children are Millennials, a generation that witnessed the transition of the era from modern to postmodern. Diversity is now widely practiced across schools with teachers now knowing a difficult question’s answer is just a google search away. Living in a postmodern era has brought about different cultures together which has led to diversity, unity and even a profound respect among individuals for one another. Yet anything that seeks to modernize a society sometimes calls for trouble too and this is why as a society, we need to reshape our Islamic educational system.
In other words, it is vital to cement the belief of God, the values Islam adheres to and the lessons it portrays into a child’s life with a different approach. Text book spoon-feeding will no longer work for one wrong google search can plant the seeds of doubt in a child’s mind. For example, We need to connect Science to God through proving the existence of the Divine through Science and even reasoning. Proving God exists through science Is a powerful tool to preserve a child/teenager’s belief. Also , the need to have a modest society, the importance of preserving certain aspects of our culture and values are poignant for the world today seeks to disseminate the concept of religion, and modesty. This is the trap we need to be mindful of.
We also need to emphasize on the values and lessons the Qur’an has, once again by connecting it to our era. The holy book is a miracle because it has remained unchanged for it was revealed to the Prophet as a guidance for mankind till the end of time. We also need our children to understand that not everything that is normalized today by the west, is moral. Through examples, proofs and an education that doesn’t only focus on Secularism but also the core values that Islam teaches us, we will be able to raise our children in an era that is somewhat suffering from an information overload problem.
If we reshape the way our society thinks, hold on firmly to the invaluable lessons from the Qur’an and Ahlulbayt, educate ourselves first and then our children, learn and then teach our children on how to navigate through the internet and social media, we will rear a generation of intelligent, modest and rightly guided individuals, slowly preparing the ground for the reappearance of Imam Mahdi (atfs).