Comments on Arabic (Nahw and Sarf ) Classes that form part of the Shariah Program:
I joined this program three months ago and inshallah I will share some of my thoughts on this experience.
It has been a blessing for me personally to have this opportunity to learn traditional knowledge while continuing to work full-time. Although by the grace of Allah, I was able to study part-time for about two years under some knowledgeable teachers in Halifax, in all honesty, the courses were not designed, for many valid reasons, to take a student on a path that the Shariah program envisions. To the best of my knowledge, this combination of traditional methodology and a rapid pace to suit mature audiences is unique in North America. I would think one would have to look to more traditional places of learning were one to seek similar knowledge at a rapid pace.
The Nahw (Syntax) and Sarf (Etymology) courses are taught separately in a traditional methodology that greatly emphasizes acquiring a strong grasp on classical grammatical concepts and not just the ability to converse. The lessons are well organized and concepts are introduced in a logical sequence. The pace is rapid and students are expected to prepare for the lessons before class. Key concepts are reviewed in class to ensure that students grasp them. Memorization is integral to the learning process. Over the last few months we have been working with three books on Nahw and Sarf and two other books that enable us to apply the concepts we learn. Our Ustads, alhamdulillah, have a firm grasp upon these sciences.
Although the teaching methodology is traditional, the class environment accommodates students like myself who might not yet be familiar with the classical etiquettes of seeking sacred knowledge.
This course has given me an appreciation for the efforts that our scholars have taken throughout history to preserve and pass on this blessed knowledge. This course has also enabled me to recognize that one would be fairly challenged to have an in depth understanding of our tradition without having a firm grasp on Arabic.
To many of my sisters and brothers who are in a similar boat like myself, having learnt some worldly sciences and now working backwards to acquire fundamentals in the Deen, I would encourage you to join this program. Inshallah it will go a long way towards rectifying our otherwise reverse order of priorities, but the Merciful One knows best.
Jaza Allahu Khair
Mansoor Wani, MBA
Capital Planning Analyst
Government of Ontario
Now formally registering for the 2009 Online Arabic Foundations Program
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