Category: Menginspirasi Dunia

Making the Most of Your 20s: A CEO’s Checklist for Accelerating Your Career

11 Sep 2015
 President and CEO at The Boston Consulting Group

In 1983, I graduated from the University of Michigan with a bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering. My timing sucked. The U.S. was in a recession, oil prices had fallen 30%, and the job market for ChemE’s had declined even more. The career I had expected to pursue in synthetic fuels, following two great summer experiences, had evaporated.

After the on-campus recruiting process during my senior year, I was fortunate to have two opportunities: one with the R&D group of a petrochemical company, the other with P&G in soap product development. On the surface the choice seemed easy. The petrochemical job paid 10% more (a reasonably big deal, given my student loans) and was much closer to my interests.

In what seemed at the time to be a novel approach, I built a spreadsheet in the newly introduced Lotus 1-2-3 that weighted and scored every decision factor. It was close, but the analysis clearly showed I should take the petrochemical job. However, something about “the answer” didn’t feel right. I had liked P&G’s culture and people, the focus on training, and the responsibility given to young engineers, and I’d really liked the idea of owning a project and taking it to the market. I’d also be working on a broader range of issues and projects—my role wouldn’t be static.

So what did I do? I took the P&G job (and still managed to make a dent in my loans). Looking back, I consider it one of the best decisions I ever made.

Five years later, as I was completing an MBA, I had more opportunities but a similar experience. My heart—and to her everlasting credit, my mom—knew that the right place for me was BCG’s relatively new 20-person office in New York, even though the analytic part of me, which was busy weighing pros and cons, knew there were far safer options.

In the years since joining BCG, I ran recruiting in New York, led the New York office, and oversaw the Americas before becoming CEO. I’ve had the opportunity to speak with thousands of young adults about their career choices. Each individual is different, but when it comes to mapping out a career, many of the trade-offs, aspirations, and pressures are very similar.

I can’t build your spreadsheets or weight your criteria, but I do hope I can provide a bit of perspective on the priorities that should guide you early in your career, when choices are often more interesting and more divergent, and your degrees of freedom are greatest.


The Starting Point: A Job You Find Truly Energizing and Satisfying

For some of you this probably sounds obvious. Why would you take a job that you didn’t think you’d enjoy? But it’s not as rare a misstep as you might think. Career advisors can sometimes feed the obsession with résumé building. Insecurity can also get in the way, pointing to safer options. And peer pressure can push you toward opportunities designed to shape what others think of you.

Never underestimate the value of a job you actually find fulfilling. The truth is, when we are energized by what we do, it shines through. We push for more responsibility, we engage more deeply and more creatively, and we become strong contributors to teams rather than seeking to go it alone. I think I would have done well in the petrochemical job, but I still remember how energized I felt at P&G—and later at BCG—because of my role and the people I was surrounded by, both of which directly contributed to my own growth and performance.

Personally, I would encourage holding any job to the “five-year test”: Can I see myself working happily at this job for five years? Of course, you’re not literally committing to five years; another opportunity can always come along—even within the same company. But if you choose a place where you think you can be genuinely happy for that long, you’ll not only be invested in today, you’ll be more likely to build the skills, accomplishments, mind-set, and relationships to prepare for the future.

For many of you, there’s more than one place that could clear this hurdle. Three questions can help you narrow the list.


Can You Build Capabilities for the Long Term?

I can’t stress this enough. Most people will change employers multiple times. Even in a single company, roles will evolve dramatically. In a world that’s being continuously reshaped by massive forces like globalization and, in particular, technology, there is a growing premium on adaptiveness and lifelong learning. It’s never been so important to find a company that will let you reshape your role and push yourself to grow in different ways. You want to avoid being at a standstill.

Your twenties are a unique period to build a set of capabilities that will last a lifetime. Most of us will work for 40 to 50 years and some even longer—my dad just retired at age 79, having had three distinct careers. Use this time to invest in yourself.

Every job enables you to grow in one way or another, so what does this really mean?

  • Breadth, Not Just Depth. For many employers, the best way to get value out of their staff over the short term is to train them to do one or two things really well. A great analyst, for example, will keep getting more spreadsheets to build. For you, however, there is tremendous value in venturing beyond your core skill set and seeing the world from a range of perspectives—including from abroad. Depth of expertise matters, especially in areas where you have great passion and interest, but don’t miss the opportunity to become well-rounded and adaptive while the risks are relatively low.
  • Apprenticeship, Not Just Management. Your boss will care a lot about the quality of what you deliver, but what you really need to ask is how much he or she will care about you. Apprenticeship goes way beyond managing your output. It is the extra investment to make you better in the long term, not just productive in the short term; the willingness to give candid feedback regularly and informally, not just in an annual review; and the commitment to push you outside your comfort zone and to be supportive if things start to go wrong. Finally, it is an environment where talented peers see helping one another as part of the culture and feel vested in one another’s success—the true attitude of a winning team.
  • Capabilities, Not Just Knowledge. Historically, entry-level jobs have tended to focus on the knowledge you acquire. But in today’s world, and even more so in the years to come, knowledge is becoming increasingly commoditized. It’s what you can do with that knowledge that will differentiate you. Can you draw insight from disparate sources? Can you lead high-performing teams? Do you have the skills to drive change in a world of complexity, and the empathy to see things through the eyes of others, including customers, employees, and society?


Can You Make a Difference?

Mark Twain said, “The two best days of your life are the day you are born and the day you find out why.” Purpose is the fuel of a great career.

Of course, most of us won’t be Jobs, Brin, or Musk, fundamentally changing the world almost right out of the gate. Over time, how you want to make a difference will likely change, and how you can make a difference will expand. So don’t focus solely on the difference you can make in the short term, but do expect to find meaning in your work early on.

Consider asking yourself these questions as you weigh your options: Is this a place that seeks to help change the world or merely to extract value from the status quo? Will I see real impact from my work? Is this an environment that’s driven by the best ideas and not simply by who is most senior in the room? Do the values of this place match my own, and will they leave me proud of what I do?


Can You Find and Manage Your Own Balance?

I’m in a profession known for hard work. Client expectations are high and time frames are often short. But even in an industry as intense as ours, finding your own personal balance is important to your success. Establishing priorities outside of work, maintaining your health and relationships, and genuinely enjoying the people you work with shouldn’t be seen as perks or incidental privileges but rather as vital counterweights that contribute to both your well-being and your career.

Over time, the things that matter most to you will evolve. There will be periods when diving into your job, even working lots of hours, will feel right, and traveling the world or taking on a tough assignment will be energizing, particularly when you can see the impact of your efforts. But you’ll probably come to view the trade-offs differently over time. You might find, for example, that having more predictability, more flexible hours, or the ability to take some time off becomes really important to you.

The key is to be honest with yourself about what is right for you at this time. Even if your balance tilts toward work, make sure you find a place where life beyondwork matters, so that you’ll have the support you need as your priorities evolve.

One final piece of advice: you should put as much effort into making the right decision as you put into getting the offers. Job seekers often devote so much time and emotional energy to getting the job offer—writing a résumé, networking, securing and preparing for interviews—that they are worn down by the time the offers finally arrive.

But making the right job decision takes work. It is fine to start by listening to the recruiter’s pitch, reading anonymous comments on career websites, or getting your friends’ advice, but you are shortchanging yourself if you stop there. You should seek a range of views from current and past employees and people you find credible. Ask the hard questions and look for answers in real-life examples, not just in the corporate vision or policy statement. Then, give yourself time to think. Our decisions are heavily influenced by those we speak to last; that’s why car dealers never want us to leave the showroom. But the odds are that your decision will be better if you can talk to others who gave you offers and still be confident in your final choice.

I didn’t set out to be the world’s greatest soap maker, but my first big job decision was, in hindsight, a defining moment. That choice—together with the decision to join BCG—made me appreciate how important it is to look at job opportunities from multiple angles, some less obvious than others, and to think deeply about the experience, culture, and team you’ll be part of. With self-reflection, focus, and a commitment to investing in yourself and making a difference, you can find the place that is right for you now and prepares you for the decades ahead, too.


Faedah Surat Al Mulk, Hikmah Allah Menciptakan Bintang di Langit

Artikel kali ini adalah lanjutan dari pembahasan kami dalam faedah tafsir surat Al Mulk. Namun pembahasan ini akan melebar sampai pembahasan ramalan bintang dan zodiak dalam ilmu astrologi. Semoga bermanfaat.

Allah Ta’ala berfirman,

الَّذِي خَلَقَ سَبْعَ سَمَوَاتٍ طِبَاقًا مَا تَرَى فِي خَلْقِ الرَّحْمَنِ مِنْ تَفَاوُتٍ فَارْجِعِ الْبَصَرَ هَلْ تَرَى مِنْ فُطُورٍ (3) ثُمَّ ارْجِعِ الْبَصَرَ كَرَّتَيْنِ يَنْقَلِبْ إِلَيْكَ الْبَصَرُ خَاسِئًا وَهُوَ حَسِيرٌ (4) وَلَقَدْ زَيَّنَّا السَّمَاءَ الدُّنْيَا بِمَصَابِيحَ وَجَعَلْنَاهَا رُجُومًا لِلشَّيَاطِينِ وَأَعْتَدْنَا لَهُمْ عَذَابَ السَّعِيرِ (5)

“Yang telah menciptakan tujuh langit berlapis-lapis, kamu sekali-kali tidak melihat pada ciptaan Rabb Yang Maha Pemurah sesuatu yang tidak seimbang. Maka lihatlah berulang-ulang, adakah kamu lihat sesuatu yang tidak seimbang?” Kemudian pandanglah sekali lagi niscaya penglihatanmu akan kembali kepadamu dengan tidak menemukan sesuatu cacat dan penglihatanmu itu pun dalam keadaan payah. Sesungguhnya Kami telah menghiasi langit yang dekat dengan bintang-bintang dan Kami jadikan bintang-bintang itu alat-alat pelempar setan, dan Kami sediakan bagi mereka siksa neraka yang menyala-nyala.” (QS. Al Mulk: 3-5)

Apakah Langit Ada yang Cacat?

Dalam ayat ini, Allah menciptakan langit berlapis-lapis atau bertingkat-tingkat. Kemudian Allah tanyakan, apakah ada sesuatu yang cacat atau retak di langit tersebut?  Jawabannya tentu saja tidak. Kemudian Allah memerintah melihatnya berulang lagi (bahkan berulang kali), apakah ada yang cacat di langit itu? Hasilnya, jika dilihat berulang kali tidak ada cacat sama sekali pada ciptaan Allah tersebut. Namun yang didapat adalah rasa payah karena berulangkalinya menelusuri langit itu.

Syaikh As Sa’di mengatakan bahwa jika sama sekali di langit tersebut tidak ada cacat, maka ini menunjukkan sempurnanya hasil ciptaan Allah. Ciptaan Allah tersebut begitu seimbang dilihat dari berbagai sisi, yaitu dari warna, hakikatnya, dan ketinggiannya. Begitu pula pada ciptaan Allah lainnya seperti matahari, rembulan dan bintang yang bersinar.[1]

Keindahan Langit Ciptaan Allah

Dalam ayat selanjutnya, Allah menjelaskan kebagusan langit ciptaan-Nya. Langit tersebut menjadi indah dan menawan karena dihiasi dengan bintang-bintang. Bintang dalam ayat di atas disebutkan berfungsi untuk melempar setan dan sebagai penghias langit. Namun sebenaranya fungsi bintang masih ada satu lagi. Bintang secara keseluruhan memiliki tiga fungsi.

Fungsi Bintang di Langit

Fungsi pertama: Untuk melempar setan-setan yang akan mencuri berita langit. Hal ini sebagaimana terdapat dalam surat Al Mulk,

وَجَعَلْنَاهَا رُجُومًا لِلشَّيَاطِينِ وَأَعْتَدْنَا لَهُمْ عَذَابَ السَّعِيرِ

DanKami jadikan bintang-bintang itu alat-alat pelempar setan, dan Kami sediakan bagi mereka siksa neraka yang menyala-nyala.” (QS. Al Mulk: 5)

Setan mencuri berita langit dari para malaikat langit. Lalu ia akan meneruskannya pada tukang ramal. Akan tetapi, Allah senantiasa menjaga langit dengan percikan api yang lepas dari bintang, maka binasalah para pencuri berita langit tersebut. Apalagi ketika diutus Nabi shallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, langit terus dilindungi dengan percikan api.  Sebagaimana Allah Ta’ala berfirman,

وَأَنَّا كُنَّا نَقْعُدُ مِنْهَا مَقَاعِدَ لِلسَّمْعِ فَمَنْ يَسْتَمِعِ الآنَ يَجِدْ لَهُ شِهَابًا رَصَدًا, وَأَنَّا لا نَدْرِي أَشَرٌّ أُرِيدَ بِمَنْ فِي الأرْضِ أَمْ أَرَادَ بِهِمْ رَبُّهُمْ رَشَدًا

Dan sesungguhnya kami dahulu dapat menduduki beberapa tempat di langit itu untuk mendengar-dengarkan (berita-beritanya). Tetapi sekarang barang siapa yang (mencoba) mendengar-dengarkan (seperti itu) tentu akan menjumpai panah api yang mengintai (untuk membakarnya). Dan sesungguhnya kami tidak mengetahui (dengan adanya penjagaan itu) apakah keburukan yang dikehendaki bagi orang yang di bumi ataukah Tuhan mereka menghendaki kebaikan bagi mereka.” (QS. Al Jin: 9-10). Berita langit yang setan tersebut curi sangat sedikit sekali.[2]

Fungsi kedua: Sebagai penunjuk arah seperti rasi bintang yang menjadi penunjuk bagi nelayan di laut.

وَعَلامَاتٍ وَبِالنَّجْمِ هُمْ يَهْتَدُونَ

Dan (Dia ciptakan) tanda-tanda (penunjuk jalan). Dan dengan bintang-bintang itulah mereka mendapat petunjuk.” (QS. An Nahl: 16). Allah menjadikan bagi para musafir tanda-tanda yang mereka dapat gunakan sebagai petunjuk di bumi dan sebagai tanda-tanda di langit.[3]

Fungsi ketiga: Sebagai penerang dan penghias langit dunia. Sebagaimana disebutkan dalam firman Allah,

وَلَقَدْ زَيَّنَّا السَّمَاءَ الدُّنْيَا بِمَصَابِيحَ

“Sesungguhnya Kami telah menghiasi langit yang dekat dengan bintang-bintang.”(QS. Al Mulk: 5)

إِنَّا زَيَّنَّا السَّمَاءَ الدُّنْيَا بِزِينَةٍ الْكَوَاكِبِ

Sesungguhnya Kami telah menghias langit yang terdekat dengan hiasan, yaitu bintang-bintang.” (QS. Ash Shofaat: 6)

Mengenai surat Al Mulk ayat 5, ulama pakar tafsir –Qotadah As Sadusiy- mengatakan,

إن الله جلّ ثناؤه إنما خلق هذه النجوم لثلاث خصال: خلقها زينة للسماء الدنيا، ورجومًا للشياطين، وعلامات يهتدي بها ؛ فمن يتأوّل منها غير ذلك، فقد قال برأيه، وأخطأ حظه، وأضاع نصيبه، وتكلَّف ما لا علم له به.

Sesungguhnya Allah hanyalah menciptakan bintang untuk tiga tujuan:  [1] sebagai hiasan langit dunia, [2] sebagai pelempar setan, dan [3] sebagai penunjuk arah. Barangsiapa yang meyakini fungsi bintang selain itu, maka ia berarti telah berkata-kata dengan pikirannya semata,  ia telah mendapatkan nasib buruk, menyia-nyiakan agamanya (berkonsekuensi dikafirkan) dan telah menyusah-nyusahkan berbicara yang ia tidak memiliki ilmu sama sekali.[4] Dari sini Qotadah melarang mempelajari kedudukan bintang, begitu pula Sufyan bin ‘Uyainah tidak memberi keringanan dalam masalah ini.[5]

Mempelajari Posisi Benda Langit

Ada dua ilmu yang mempelajari posisi benda langit yaitu ilmu astronomi (ilmu tas-yir) dan ilmu astrologi (ilmu ta’tsir).

Pertama: Ilmu astronomi (ilmu tas-yir)

Astronomi, yang secara etimologi berarti “ilmu bintang” adalah ilmu yang melibatkan pengamatan dan penjelasan kejadian yang terjadi di luar Bumi dan atmosfernya. Ilmu ini mempelajari asal-usul, evolusi, sifat fisik dan kimiawi benda-benda yang bisa dilihat di langit (dan di luar Bumi), juga proses yang melibatkan mereka.

Astronomi adalah salah satu di antara sedikit ilmu pengetahuan di mana amatir masih memainkan peran aktif, khususnya dalam hal penemuan dan pengamatan fenomena sementara. Astronomi jangan dikelirukan dengan astrologi, ilmusemu yang mengasumsikan bahwa takdir manusia dapat dikaitkan dengan letak benda-benda astronomis di langit. Meskipun memiliki asal-muasal yang sama, kedua bidang ini sangat berbeda; astronom menggunakan metode ilmiah, sedangkan astrolog tidak.[6]

Kedua: Ilmu astrologi (ilmu ta’tsir)

Astrologi adalah ilmu yang menghubungkan antara gerakan benda-benda tata surya (planet, bulan dan matahari) dengan nasib manusia. Karena semua planet, matahari dan bulan beredar di sepanjang lingkaran ekliptik, otomatis mereka semua juga beredar di antara zodiak. Ramalan astrologi didasarkan pada kedudukan benda-benda tata surya di dalam zodiak.

Seseorang akan menyandang tanda zodiaknya berdasarkan kedudukan matahari di dalam zodiak pada tanggal kelahirannya. Misalnya, orang yang lahir awal desember akan berzodiak Sagitarius, karena pada tanggal tersebut Matahari berada di wilayah rasi bintang Sagitarius. Kedudukan Matahari sendiri dibedakan antara waktu tropikal dan waktu sideral yang menyebabkan terdapat dua macam zodiak, yaitu zodiak tropikal dan zodiak sideral. Sebagian besar astrologer Barat menggunakan zodiak tropikal.

Di bola langit terdapat garis khayal yang disebut dengan lingkaran ekliptika. Jika diamati dari bumi, semua benda tatasurya (planet, Bulan dan Matahari) beredar di langit mengelilingi lingkaran ekliptika. Keistimewaan dari keduabelas zodiak dibanding rasi bintang lainnya adalah semuanya berada di wilayah langit yang memotong lingkaran ekliptika. Jadi dapat disimpulkan zodiak adalah semua rasi bintang yang berada disepanjang lingkaran ekliptika. Rasi-rasi bintang tersebut adalah:

  1. Capricornus: Kambing laut
  2. Aquarius: Pembawa Air
  3. Pisces: Ikan
  4. Aries: Domba
  5. Taurus: Kerbau
  6. Gemini: Si Kembar
  7. Cancer: Kepiting
  8. Leo: Singa
  9. Virgo: Gadis Perawan
  10. Libra: Timbangan
  11. Scorpius: Kalajengking
  12. Sagitarius : Si Pemanah[7]

Hukum Mempelajari Ilmu Astronomi dan Ilmu Astrologi

Para ulama dalam menilai ilmu yang mempelajari kedudukan bintang ada dua pendapat:

Pendapat pertama: Terlarang mempelajari posisi benda langit. Inilah pendapat Qotadah dan Sufyan bin ‘Uyainah. Alasan mereka melarang hal ini dalam rangkasaddu adz dzari’ah yaitu menutup jalan dari hal yang dilarang. Mereka khawatir jika kedudukan bintang tersebut dipelajari, akan diyakini bahwa posisi benda langit tersebut bisa berpengaruh pada takdir seseorang. Dan ini adalah penambahan dari tiga fungsi benda langit sebagaimana yang telah dijelaskan di atas.

Pendapat kedua: Tidak mengapa mempelajari posisi benda langit. Yang dibolehkan di sini adalah ilmu tas-yir (ilmu astronomi). Inilah pendapat Imam Ahmad, Ishaq bin Rohuyah dan kebanyakan ulama.

Pendapat kedua inilah yang lebih tepat karena berbagai manfaat yang bisa diperoleh dari ilmu astronomi dan tidak termasuk sebab yang dilarang. Ilmu tas-yir (ilmu astronomi) memiliki beberapa manfaat. Di antaranya bisa dipakai untuk kepentingan agama seperti mengetahui arah kiblat dan waktu shalat. Atau untuk urusan dunia seperti mengetahui pergantian musim. Ini semua termasuk ilmu hisab dan dibolehkan.[8]

Sedangkan yang terlarang untuk dipelajari adalah ilmu yang pertama yang disebut dengan ilmuta’tsir (ilmu astrologi). Dalam ilmu astrologi, ada keyakinan bahwa posisi benda-benda langit berpengaruh pada nasib seseorang.[9] Padahal tidak ada kaitan ilmiah antara posisi benda langit dan nasib seseorang. Inilah yang keliru.

Keyakinan Terhadap Zodiak dan Ramalan Bintang

Ada tiga macam keyakinan yang dimaksud dan ketiga-tiganya haram.

Pertama: Keyakinan bahwa posisi benda langit yang menciptakan segala kejadian yang ada di alam semesta dan segala kejadian berasal dari pergerakan benda langit.

Keyakinan semacam ini adalah keyakinan yang dimiliki oleh Ash Shobi-ah. Mereka mengingkari Allah sebagai pencipta. Segala kejadian yang ada diciptakan oleh benda langit. Pergerakan benda langit yang ada dapat diklaim menimbulkan kejadian baik dan buruk di alam semesta. Keyakinan semacam ini adalah keyakinan yang kufur berdasarkan kesepakatan para ulama.

Kedua: Keyakinan bahwa posisi benda langit yang ada hanyalah sebagai sebab (ta’tsir) dan benda tersebut tidak menciptakan segala kejadian yang ada. Yang menciptakan setiap kejadian hanyalah Allah, sedangkan posisi benda langit tersebut hanyalah sebab semata. Keyakinan semacam ini juga tetap keliru dan termasuk syirik ashgor. Karena Allah sendiri tidak pernah menjadikan benda langit tersebut sebagai sebab. Allah pun tidak pernah menganggapnya punya kaitan dengan kejadian yang ada di muka bumi, seperti turunnya hujan dan bertiupnya angin. Semua ini kembali pada pengaturan Allah dan atas izin-Nya, dan sama sekali tidak ada kaitannya dengan kedudukan benda langit yang ada. Allah hanya menciptakan bintang untuk tiga tujuan sebagaimana telah dikemukakan di atas.

Ketiga: Posisi benda langit sebagai petunjuk untuk peristiwa masa akan datang. Keyakinan semacam ini berarti mengaku-ngaku ilmu ghoib. Ini termasuk perdukunan dan sihir. Perbuatan semacam ini termasuk kekufuran berdasarkan kesepakatan para ulama.[10]

Intinya, ketiga keyakinan di atas adalah keyakinan yang keliru, walaupun hanya menganggap sebagai sebab sedangkan yang menciptakan segala peristiwa adalah Allah. Keyakinan semacam inilah yang tersebar luas di tengah-tengah masyarakat muslim dalam majalah, koran, di dunia maya seperti di situs jejaring sosial (Facebook dan Friendster). Sebagian muslim masih saja mempercayai ramalan-ramalan bintang semacam zodiak (Aquarius, Pisces, Sagitarius, dll). Mereka meyakini bahwa pasangan yang cocok untuk dirinya adalah jika memiliki zodiak A, karena berdasarkan ramalan zodiaknya. Jika dia memiliki pasangan dari zodiak C, maka boleh jadi ada ketidakcocokan. Inilah perbuatan dosa yang sudah semakin tersebar luas di masyarakat muslim.

Mengenai hukum membaca ramalan bintang secara lebih lengkap -insya Allah- akan kami ulas pada posting selanjutnya dalam kategori aqidah.

Semoga tulisan ini bermanfaat bagi kaum muslimin. Janganlah pernah bosan untuk mempelajari Al Qur’an melalui tafsirnya walaupun hanya satu atau dua ayat.

Penulis: Muhammad Abduh Tuasikal


Panggang, Gunung Kidul, 3 Dzulhijah 1430 H

– Setiap hari harus disibukkan dengan mengkaji Al Qur’an –

[1]Taisir Al Karimir Rohman, Syaikh ‘Abdurrahman bin Nashir As Sa’di, hal. 875, Muassasah Ar Risalah, cetakan pertama, 1420 H.

[2] Lihat I’anatul Mustafid bi Syarh Kitabit Tauhid, Syaikh Sholih bin Fauzan bin ‘Abdillah Al Fauzan, 2/14-15, Terbitan Ulin Nuha, tahun 2003.

[3] Idem

[4] Dikeluarkan oleh Ibnu Jarir Ath Thobariy dalam Jami’il Bayan fii Ta’wilil Qur’an, 23/508, Muassasah Ar Risalah, cetakan pertama, 1420 H. Syaikh Musthofa Al ‘Adawiy mengatakan bahwa sanadnya hasan. Lihat Tafsir Juz Tabaarok, Syaikh Musthofa Al ‘Adawiy, hal. 20, Maktabah Makkah, cetakan pertama, tahun 1423 H.

[5] Disebutkan oleh Syaikh Muhammad bin ‘Abdul Wahab dalam Kitabut Tauhid.

[6] Sumber:

[7] Sumber:

[8] Lihat Mutiara Faidah Kitab Tauhid, Abu ‘Isa ‘Abdullah bin Salam, hal. 167-168, Pustaka Muslim, cetakan pertama, 1428 H dan I’anatul Mustafid bi Syarh Kitabit Tauhid, 2/18.

[9] Sumber Wikipedia [english], kata “Astrology”.

[10] Lihat I’anatul Mustafid bi Syarh Kitabit Tauhid, 2/17.

-Repost from


Constructing an argument

When writing an essay it is essential to construct an argument. An argument is a particular stand on an issue or question. It is made up of a series of claims. There are two types of claim:

  • the conclusion: the final claim that you are trying to prove. This is often the answer to a direct question, and is also known as the thesis statement.
  • the premises: other claims that lead to or contribute to the thesis statement. These are often topic sentences of paragraphs.

In order to prove the premises, you must also provide:

  • the evidence: the research, facts and discussion used to prove those points.

Therefore, if you are asked to argue a concept you are being asked to provide evidence to support your premises, which in turn support your conclusion.

When writing an essay, for example, the thesis statement will appear in your introduction and conclusion. Each premise is usually in a separate paragraph, supported by the evidence for that premise. For more on structuring an essay, see essay planning and structure.

Identifying a claim

You can often identify a premise or a conclusion by the kinds of words used:

  • Premise: since, because, as, for, given that, assuming that
  • Conclusion: thus, therefore, hence, so, it follows that, we may conclude that

(Flage, 2003, p. 58-9)

As Allen (2004, p. 19) observes, sometimes the same claim can be used as either a conclusion or a premise, depending on the point you want to make:

“Your car is dirty [conclusion] because you drove through some mud [premise].”
“You should wash your car [conclusion] since your car is dirty [premise].”

What makes a strong argument?

An argument is strong if it convinces the reader that the conclusion is correct. An argument is weak if there are gaps or bad connections between the premises which undermine their link to the conclusion.

A strong argument is:

  • supported: the evidence is convincing and objective, and it supports the claims
  • balanced: the argument considers all the different perspectives, and comes to a reasonable conclusion based on those perspectives
  • logical: the argument is clearly and consistently reasoned. An argument that contains errors of logic (also known as logical fallacies) is weak.

You can examine the strength of your argument by applying the principles of critical reading.

References and further reading

Allen, M. (2004). Smart thinking: Skills for critical understanding and writing. (2nd ed.). Melbourne, Australia: Oxford University Press. [Massey Library link]

Flage, D. (2003). The art of questioning: An introduction to critical thinking. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Education. [Massey Library link]


Reference: seen on Thursday, 5 March 2015

TED Blog


If you’re dreading the inevitable day your New Year’s resolutions—to lose weight, get a better job, and drink less, perhaps?—fall flat, it might be because you need different resolutions. Instead of focusing on outcomes, why not set your sights on process this year? Here, 10 resolutions inspired by TED Talks. They just might inspire you in turn.

[ted_talkteaser id=1653 lang=en]
Resolution #1: Make time to make art.
From the talk: 
Young-ha Kim’s “Be an artist, right now!”
“There are hundreds of reasons why we can’t be artists right now,” says Korean author Young-ha Kim—that is, all the reasons we invent when we’re too scared or intimidated. But, Kim reminds us, “We are all born artists.” Unleash those suppressed artistic impulses: take an acting class, buy some paint, or just sit with a notebook and write like crazy.
[ted_talkteaser id=1833]
Resolution #2: Take charge of your love life.
From the talk: 

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Short | 15 min | 2013 | Indonesia
Dir/Writer: Yosep Anggi Noen

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A Lady Caddy Who Never Saw A Hole In One (2013). 🙂

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