A MOSLEM – ORIENTED APPROACH FOR TEACHING PSYCHOLOGY
An important issue in the teaching of Psychology in Indonesia of which 80 % of its inhabitant are Moslem, concerns adjusting Western psychological concepts and theories to fit in with spiritual principles of man in the Islamic world. So far the teaching of Psychology in universities has been based on models of man which have lacked enough emphasis on the spiritual dimension This study explores the main points to be included in a curriculum which puts more consideration on the spiritual dimension. It is necessary to first examine Psychology as a science with reference to Islam as the basis for a curriculum that may be used by the Faculty of Psychology in Islamic Universities to differentiate them from non-Islamic - oriented institutions.. The model of man in Islamic Psychology which should consider the most important dimension of man, namely the spiritual dimension, will be discussed. This condition causes a dilemma for Moslem psychologists, because on one hand is the realization that many models and schools of Psychology are not Moslem oriented, while on the other hand Islamic Psychology itself not been developed yet. Based on the above considerations, it is proposed that the curriculum of Psychology in the Islamic universities should consist of 60 % Western/contemporary Psychology and 40% Islamic adaptation.This strategy will give the opportunity for psychologists graduating from this program to keep up with state of the art Contemporary Psychology, as well as getting the opportunity to do research to adapt psychological concepts and theories to the Islamic world view. The rationale and elaboration of the proposed Indonesian Islamic Psychology curriculum will be discussed as a model. The curriculum should put more consideration on the spiritual dimension. The most Islamic-oriented faculties of Psychology in Indonesia were started and are located on the island of Java, where spiritualism remains a strong factor in everyday life and in the practice of religion. The model of man in Javanese culture which is colored by this spiritual dimension strongly influences the practice of Islam.Worshippers follow special rituals based on cultural tradition which, over the centuries have blended into the religion. This unique approach, differing from mainstream Islam, is an indicator of the tolerance with which view the practice of other religions. The basis for the model for teaching should be to promote the religious faith and devotion of the students through strengthening Iman and Taqwa which can be described as:
To believe in God, Mohammad as His Prophet, and the teachings of the holy Qur’an and Hadits.
To obey God’s order and prohibition as stated in the holy Qur’an.
These should become the guidelines for the teaching of general psychology and non-psychological courses for the purpose of developing and applying the model of man according to Islam.
© 2008 Victor Karandashev