BHUBANESWAR, October 14, 2018 – There is a discernible, encompassing lively thread of continuity to Sejahtera Leadership Initiative (SLI) Founding Convener, Professor Tan Sri Dzulkifli Abdul Razak who’s the Former Chairperson of Universiti Sains Islam Malaysia and currently Rector of International Islamic University Malaysia columns, books and speeches in pursuit of Sejahtera and Education for Sustainable Development far beyond the United  Nations – Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The latest was SLI Seminar presented jointly with Xavier Centre of Humanities & Compassion Studies (XCHCS) in collaboration with the Xavier School of Sustainability (XSOS), Xavier University Bhubaneswar (XUB).

This Indian connection was aptly championed by Dr. Nadarajah Manikam, Chair Professor of XCHCS who is also SLI Associate Director. Evidently, Sejahtera is an indigenous concept of cosmic proportion in this region that coud be traced to some Sanskrit words ‘Sadhya, Sudottra, Sasastra’. Quality of life is generally understood as the state of wellbeing that is beyond the measure of material wealth, but include health, happiness, wellbeing, wellness in a more cohesive way. These are essential to the humanistic wellbeing of any individual’s professional, social and personal life. These are also essential to the wellbeing of society.

This seminar attended by XUB faculty members and students was graced by the Registrar. Fr. E. A. Augustine, S.J., and Dr. S. Peppin, Professor & Dean of XSOS. India is among the most ancient countries in the world, with cultural roots dating back to 2000 B.C.  It is also one of the most spiritual countries. Many Indian people are deeply spiritual, and religious plays an important role in shaping their sociocultural way of life. XUB as a jesuit university displays balanced leadership characteristics and is socially bound by religious tolerance. It plays an important role in forming effective communication and collaboration with SLI.

During this seminar entitled ‘Peace, Sustainability and Compassion: Can We Go Beyond Sustainable Development Goals?’; Professor Tan Sri Dzulkifli delivered a presentation on the main topic ‘Global Change Agents within the Framework of Sejahtera Leadership’ and followed with engaging dialogue. The afternoon session was dedicated with deliberations on ‘Experience and Capabilities of Emerging Sejahtera Leaders in Asia & Latin America’.

Assoc Professor Dr. Mahazan Abdul Mutalib, USIM Director of Research Management and Innovation talked about the Qalb-Leadership from the universal and Islamic perspectives. Johan Dzulkifli, PhD student from the University of Westminister, UK who is also a Policy Researcher & Specialist in Latin American cultures and values shared his rare experience whilst working as Information Officer at the Embassy of Malaysia in Mexico City. Dr. Haji Zulkifly Baharom, CEO of SLI shared practical experience during his 15 years tenure as an organizational and people developer in intergrating corporate values in Malaysia Airlines in mid-1990s to early 2000s. This fundamental insights made him understand values more than ever. Consultant Yazdi Jehangir Bankwala, SLI Associate Director was instrumental in helping Dr. Zul to accelerate intervention of values clarification methodology & evaluation.

This seminar has discussed and resolved the qualities of true Sejahtera leaders within the context of peace, sustainability and compassion – how they are discovered and fostered, what we expect of them, and whose interests they serve. In the universities and business world, as elsewhere, it is by serving others first that sejahtera leaders can find the real wellbeing economics of happiness. There is a need to shift the world leaders’ focus back toward immaterial values and the creation of long-term compassion. A new generation of student leaders must step forward and provide this new kind of true Sejahtera leadership.”

This seminar has agreed that the basic premise of compassionate sejahtera leadership is essential. It’s not just that it’s good to have – it’s necessary for a peaceful and sustainable society. We need a set of sanctions for improper behavior, and, more importantly, we need young leaders who have a positive impact on individuals, organizations, and the societies.

Sejahtera leaders must recognize that the fundamental purpose of leading is to faithfully serve others and society. They don’t just state them; they have to actually practice work-life balance in their lives. Balance is not better time management, but a better boundary management. Balance means making humanistic choices and enjoying those choices.They lead not just with their minds and intellects, but with the whole person in a holistic form of leadership. They have to lead with our hearts because that’s how we build caring sejahtera leadership. Compassion is not a luxury, but a necessity in order for every human being to survive. It is a driving force behind what we’re doing here today we go beyond the SDGs.

Prepared by :
Dr. Zulkifly Baharom
CEO Sejahtera Leadership Initiative