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Eastern Education Philosophy is generally

grouped into three main schools of thought.
Philosophy of Islamic Education


Confucianism ( China )


Nationalism and Internationalism ( India )

In general, the philosophy of Islamic education

was based on the teachings of the holy book, alQuran. According to Hassan Langgulung
(1979), the important elements which become
the basis of Islamic education are:
Only one Allah (God).
Believe messengers of Allah (God).
Believe divine revealment of Allah (God) to the
prophets (Nabi-nabi).
Human beings possess potentials to develop
moral and spiritual aspects.
Every individual is responsible to his/her own

Education, according to Islam, is the efforts to

improve oneself so as to form perfect qualities
such as pious, pure, benevolent, well-informed,
responsible and trustworthy.
Islam encourages continuous effort in pursuit of
The curriculum in Islamic education followed
closely to the teachings of al-Quran.
The curriculum included the study of humanity
subjects and physical science or natural science.
Also integrated worldliness and eternity
Arabic language used as the medium of

Prominent Islamic scholars believed that

education could play the role to create a
harmonious balance among the physical,
intellectual and spiritual aspects of human


Muhammad Qath
Education is a process to form overall and
balanced human beings.
The main aim of education is to develop the
potentials of individuals intellectually,
physically, emotionally, and spiritually up to a
perfect level.


Dr. Mohd Athiyah al- Abrasyi

Education as a process to inculcate human
character with noble and high moral values
according to the basic teachings of Islam.


Amal al- Shaibani

Education should be catered for human beings
to prepare livings in this world and in eternity.


Al- Ghazali
The process of education should include
intellectual aspect, physical training and the
formation of noble, brave and respectful


Hamka ( Haji Abdul Karim Amrullah)

A very influential Islamic educationist in
Indonesia in 20th century.
Education is a process which could help to
form good behaviour, as well as brave,
cultured and noble characters such as
modest, tolerant and respect the elders.

Originated from the thinking and reasoning of

Confucius (551-479BC) together with his followers
such as Mengzi (372-289BC), Xunzi (313-238BC)
and Hanyu (768-824AD) from China.

Confucius, a prominent educationist and

philosopher in China, emphasized that education
is a process to cultivate perfectness in human
ethical conduct.

And this could be achieved by following the

practice of politeness, considerate and sympathy
for others, sincerity, moderation, respect elders,
love youngsters, loyal to as well as love the
authority and nation.

Followers of Confucianism agreed that education

is an important instrument to sustain good values
and norms of society.

Subsequently, important cultural values in the

society could be preserved to achieve stability,
prosperity and harmony in life.

They assumed that human beings were endowed

with good values and benevolence, which could
be further developed through the process of

Confucius aware that the potential of individuals

are different from one another. As such, he
taught his students according to their abilities.

During the time of Sung Dynasty,

Chenghao(1032-1085 AD), Chengyi (1033-1107
AD) and Zhuxi introduced the element of
rationalism in the educational philosophy of

They were of the opinion that in order to obtain

true knowledge, students have to integrate
rational thinking through mental perception.

They suggested inquiry method to be used to

acquire knowledge accordingly.
Wong Shouren (1472-1528 AD), a philosopher
during the time of the Ming Dynasty, believed
intuitive knowledge was actually contained in
every individuals mind.
So, students ought to make use of intuitive
knowledge to understand their surroundings.
He opposed the use of inquiry method to acquire
knowledge and the method of punishment of
students as a form of teaching approach.
He was more in favour of using technique of
giving advice and motivation to arouse students
interest in learning.

Rabindranath Tagore ( 1861-1941), a philosopher

and famous poet from India.
He interpreted education as a process which is
aimed at producing individuals with perfect
reasoning, who are capable of achieving all
aspects in complete and meaningful living.
According to him, education should be lively,
dynamic and realistic process.
An educated person should support the ideology
of nationalism, be ready to serve the society and
the nation as well as to be far-sighted with
positive attitude towards internationalism.

Sharifah Alwiaf Alsagoff, in her book Philosophy of

Education ( 1984) listed out the following
important ideas of Rabindranath Tagores
education philosophy in fostering humans

Physical education is aimed at training the

senses and general skill, efficiency and
competency of individuals.

Intellectual education is aimed at training

individual so that his reasoning process would
always be inquisitive, active, scientifically inclined,
clear, brave and liberal.

Spiritual education is aimed at realising selfconsciousness through fully sympathised feeling.

Realistic education is education that related

with real life situations.

Education should be lively and dynamic.

Education should aim at overall development of

children in a satisfactory manner during their
early years of formal learning.

Education for nationalism should aim to

inculcate the ideals and traditions of a nation.

Education for internationalism should try to

foster good relations, friendship, harmony and
peace among all nations in the world. Education
should be based on real knowledge and related
directly with the customs and traditions, historical
background and culture of the people of other

Education for individual development should

aim to develop fully the ability and positive
attitude of individuals.

Education for social services and efficiencies

is to direct energy and ability of individuals to
develop the welfare of society and nation.