PUTRAJAYA (Sept 24, 2010): Malaysia needs to produce more highly-capable and convincing Muslim thinkers to come out with the best alternative thinking and solution to the world problems and crisis.
Former premier Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad said the Muslim community must leave the rhetoric world and culture and shift to a more meaningful and practical approach.
Mahathir said this in his acceptance speech after being conferred with a Doctor of Philosophy (Hons) in Economics and Muamalat Administrations by Universiti Sains Islam Malaysia (USIM) during its special convocation ceremony here today.
He said Muslims must be independent and capable of generating knowledge and technology as well as solutions to the various social, economic and international problems.
They should not be enslaved or dominated by Western ideas and thinking, he said.
"Muslims must change from being only users of existing knowledge and ideas to providers or explorer of knowledge or contributor of ideas which could be an alternative solution based on Islam.
"This generation of thinking based on religion must be the continuous focus and effort among Muslim scholars to come out with methods and solutions which could compete with the Western and conventional ideas and theories," he said.
Mahathir said although Western and conventional theories sometimes failed to provide the best solution, they could still conquer and influence global thinking in terms of social, economy, politics and finance.
He said without realising it, the world is facing a moral, social, political and economic crisis because it is too confined with the objectives and philosophy of the West.
"We now feel what we inherited from Islam and its teaching is not suitable and outdated. We feel inferior when faced with theories brought by Western thinkers which are not based on religion.
"From this Western philosophy of free thinking and individual freedom which are unlimited, people will lose direction and the actual objective in life."