e-ISSN 2231-8542
ISSN 1511-3701

Home / Regular Issue / JTAS Vol. 24 (S) Mar. 2016 / JSSH-S0135-2015


Traditional Malay Literature and the Generation of Knowledge

Muhd Norizam Jamian and Shaiful Bahri Md Radzi

Pertanika Journal of Tropical Agricultural Science, Volume 24, Issue S, March 2016

Keywords: traditional Malay literature, knowledge generation, knowledge, science, perfect human, hablumminaLLah, hablumminannas, Syed Muhammad Naquib Al-Attas

Published on: 15 Jun 2016

This paper discusses the functions of traditional Malay literature as a platform for generating knowledge to contribute towards human civilisation and fulfil his/her responsibility as Allah's representative on earth. The traditional Malay literature is rich in knowledge of various types. Consistent with the goal to produce a perfect human, knowledge is important to produce individuals who successfully achieve real perfection either spiritually or physically. Data studied involves a multiple genre of traditional Malay literature produced or copied from the 15th to 19th century including Sejarah Melayu (Sulalatus Salatin), Hikayat Raja Pasai, Syair Perang Siak, Syair Perang Mengkasar, Hukum Kanun Melaka, Taj al-Salatin, Bustan al-Salatin, Sirat al-Mustaqim, Sabil al-Muhtadin, Syair Perahu, Syair Dagang, Surat al-Anbiya, Hikayat Abu Syahmah and Hikayat Ibrahim ibn Adham. In establishing the functions of traditional Malay literature as a platform for generating knowledge, this study applies Syed Muhammad Naquib Al-Attas's (2001) framework on adab. The study demonstrates that traditional Malay literature has played an important role of generating knowledge towards producing a noble, well-balanced individual, spiritually and physically, in this world and the hereafter. Traditional Malay literature is apparently conceived by its readership as providing enlightening principles in seeking a guided relationship both with their Creator (hablumminaLLah) and fellow human beings (hablumminannas) as well as explicating the divine purposes of every living human being in this world to become His vicegerent and servant. Knowledge contained in this traditional literary text could produce a perfect human being that has the ability to fulfil his obligations as Allah's representative on earth and His righteous slaves.

ISSN 1511-3701

e-ISSN 2231-8542

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