Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Understanding the spirituality of human relationships in Buber and Rumi: An application to multicultural education in Malaysia
by Muhamad, Mohd Mokhtar, Ph.D., Indiana University, 2016, 181; 10148324
Abstract (Summary)

Most studies on relationships in education are not about human relationships in itself, but about what teachers or students perceived to be a good teacher-students relationship or the outcome of a good teacher-students relationship. This dissertation, however, attempts to unfold the complex and implicit elements of human relationships and investigate how it can be practiced in teacher-student relationships in current educational settings. For this purpose, this dissertation explores two figures who had significantly contributed to the knowledge of human relationships—Martin Buber and Jalaluddin Rumi. The aim of this study is to explore how an understanding of human relationships from a spiritual perspective can improve teacher-student relationships in educational settings and help students to learn to perceive any relationship with another person not only as multicultural relationships but also as relationships between human beings. There are three principles of spirituality in human relationships derived from the teachings of Buber and Rumi. First, the human reason cannot be the foundation of the relationships between human beings because of certain limitations. Second, there is a state of a unified-self where qualities including ones that are paradoxical to each other can be reconciled and hold together within the unified self. Third, the relationship between a human being and the world is a microcosm-macrocosm relationship. Spiritual relationship is a relationship of microcosm1-macrocosm-microcosm2 where two individuals are sharing the same macrocosm. In educational settings, teachers play an important role in establishing spiritual relationships with students. Spirituality is not something that the human reason can observe and assess. What teachers can do is to make sure that the spiritual barriers are removed and turn towards the students as a whole person. Such a relationship between teachers and students of different race and religion can possibly establish a harmonious multicultural society in Malaysia.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Carspecken, Phil F.
Commitee: Levinson, Bradley A., McCarty, Luise P., Trix, Frances
School: Indiana University
Department: School of Education
School Location: United States -- Indiana
Source: DAI-A 78/02(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Multicultural Education, Spirituality, Education philosophy
Keywords: Buber, Education, Human relationship, Multicultural, Rumi, Spirituality
Publication Number: 10148324
ISBN: 978-1-369-03511-7
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