Haedar Nashir Named New Muhammadiyah General Chairman

ONLY in a ten-minute election process involving 13 formators, Muhammadiyah successfully elected its new executive board general chairman Dr Haedar Nashir during its congress in Makassar, South Sulawesi, Thursday, August 6/15.

Haedar Nashir, born in Bandung, West Java, is currently a senior lecturer in the Muhammadiyah University, Yogyakarta, will lead one of the country’s major Muslim organizations for the period of 2015-2020, election committee chairman Dahlan Rais said in Makassar on Thursday evening.

Haedar Nashir replaces his predecessor Prof Din Syamsuddin who served as the Muhammadiyah general chairman for two periods.

During its 47th national congress, which began on August 3 to 7, Muhammadiyah has formulate a new agenda for the next five years as earlier expected by its two-term chairman, Din Syamsuddin.

Soon after being elected through the brief election, Nasir said he will try to build the Muhammadiyah as a dynamic organization in order to become more advanced and modern in the mission changes.

“In the next five years, we will build a dynamic Muhammadiyah to become brighter,” he pointed out.

According Nashir, Muhammadiyah also sees three major problems in the future life namely the virtue, nationality, and humanity.

Established in 1912, Muhammadiyah, the socioreligious organization in Indonesia, aims at adapting Islam to modern Indonesian life.

Establishment of the organization was chiefly inspired by an Egyptian reform movement, led by Muhammad Abduh, which had tried to bring the Muslim faith in harmony with modern rational thoughts.


Fri, 7 Aug 2015



Progressive Indonesia in ‘Islam Nusantara’ (Archipelagic Islam)

nu muh mukNasihin Masha
THIS week, two largest Islamic organizations in Indonesia held a congress simultaneously. The congress, that always be held in every five years, is not only to picked a new management, but also to formulate new programs for the next five years. Nahdlatul Ulama (NU), established in 1926, held the congress on Saturday (1/8,15), in Jombang, East Java. Muhammadiyah, established in 1912, held the congress on Monday (3/8/15), in Makassar, South Sulawesi.

As an Islamic boarding school-based organization, NU’s congress was held in boarding schools. While Muhammadiyah who grows its strength in educational and medical institutions, held the congress in university. If in the congress, NU has “Islam Nusantara” as tagline, then Muhammadiyah has “Progressive Indonesia/Islam.” Muhammadiyah’s tagline was born first, when they arranged the white book of the existence of Muhammadiyah in their second 100 years. The book was published in 2012. Muhammadiyah’s congress this year is the first congress held in the second century. Meanwhile, NU’s tagline was used as a theme of the congress.

In public, these two taglines is considered as if it is contested. However, it must be recognized that the phrase “Islam Nusantara” has strength, powerful magnitude, and is more contextual. The tagline is able to trigger public dicussion, even a bit controversial. Because of that, public considered Muhammadiyah’s tagline, “Progressive Indonesia/Islam,” to be more flat, but it is beyond Islam.

Actually, the two taglines were simply confirmation. NU has consecrated themselves as Aswaja – ahlussunnah wal jama’ah. A movement that is based on four mahzab – Shafi’i, Hanafi, Hanbali, Maliki – and the theology based on the Asy’ariyah. In short, NU is Sunni, not Syiah. In the time when KH Hasyim Muzadi became the chairman of NU, this organization has a tagline “Islam rahmatan lil ‘Alamin.” It is considered as appropriate when the world condition, especially in Indonesia, was gripped by terrorism and inter-religion conflict. The tagline shows Islam is peaceful and sheltered. Now, when the world condition was teased by salafi and ISIS, NU presents “Islam Nusantara” –an Indonesian typical of Islam. Conflicts that happen in the Middle East and South Asia are conflicts among Sunnis. NU is also Sunni, so that it is necessary to do the differentiation with other Sunnis. Even we can draw a firmer line on Walisongo’s propaganda –nine of them symbolized the nine stars on NU’s logo – as a form of successful propaganda of Islam Nusantara. The new tagline has two dimensions: differentiation with other Sunni and against Salafi waves.

Muhammadiyah is known as a movement that modernizes the people. Modern means advanced. Firstly, it is the war against three problems of people: superstition, heresy, and churafat. To against the three problems, the founders of Muhammadiyah focused on education, health care, and helped orphans. Therefore Muhammadiyah is very prominent oneducational institutions, hospitals and clinics, and orphanages. Now, Muhammadiyah no longer focuses on it. Even in the last five years, they focus only on the Jihad Constitution. They fought for all the rules and regulations to be back to the 1945 Constitution. Jihad this time is toward the economic fields. In these second hundred years, their focus is no longer only on the citizens’ territory. The citizens are part of the nation, Muhammadiyah is part of Indonesia, and the organization is a ‘part’ of the country. Therefore, the citizens should contribute to finish ‘the mansion’. The citizens will be peaceful and prosperous if Indonesia is also advanced, and vice versa. However this does not mean that Muhammadiyah will join the politics of power. Muhammadiyah will enter the dimension of values, spiritual, moral, vision, and influence. The progress of a nation and a society is very close to the ethics and spirit.Sociology of development – mainly initiated by Max Weber – are very close with this matter.

NU and Muhammadiyah are two main machines of the Islamic people, and also for the Indonesia. Those machines are driven. A nice car is not going to be nice if the driver is not good. Leadership recruitment process becomes so important. In this context, the electoral system of Muhammadiyah leaders is more developed. Besides collegial leadership, the process was also lengthy. Congress is just the beginning. A year before the congress, the Tanwir annual meeting be held with 200 delegates. Each delegate proposes three names. The names were then selected by the committee according to administrative requirements. At the Tanwir meeting, the participants select 39 names from the names that qualify. That selected names were brought to the congress to choose 13 names. Then the next 13 names is going to choose the chairman, that will be approved by the congress. This system has been running since 1937, when KH Mas Mansur was elected. It is difficult to play with power or money. Long and tired process will minimize the manipulative elections. However, there is an always strong candidate. This time there are two names: Haedar Nashir and Abdul Mu’ti, they were chairman and secretary of the editorial team of white book of Progressive Indonesia.

This year, NU tried to implement a new system for the election, namely Ahlul Halli Wal Aqdi (Ahwa). Musytasyar and Syuriah already have 39 names. The names were submitted to the NU branches. In congressregistration, the NU branches will pick nine names. The nine names will be Ahwa members. The Ahwa will choose Rais Aam Syuriah andcandidates of Tanfidziah chairman. However, the Tanfidziah chairman still will be chosen with one man one vote system. This system is potentially followed by money politics and fund raising. Sometimes, the focus of the congress is only in the election, not in formulation of the programs. There are three names that compete in Tanfidziah: KH Said Aqil Siradj, KH Asad Said Ali, and KH Salahuddin Wahid. Syuriah is as the higher institution, while Tanfidziah is as the executor of the policy.

Hopefully, NU and Muhammadiyah congress will create a visionary and responsive leader. A leader who not looks only at his members or a leader who sees anything a point of view.

Anyone who will lead these two religious organizations need to pay attention to the following norms. Sometimes, big can mean fat. That means inaction. Ination sometimes be limp. It can also mean great reliability. Indonesia is a country that is in a progress. Indonesia is also still so fragile. In that situation there is always sharp and volatile dynamics. The people need a quick and powerful response. We expects NU and Muhammadiyah greatness, just like an aircraft: strong, central, accommodating.

Congratulation for the congress! Indonesia is in your hands, as you should be in our hearts.


Wed, 5 Aug 2015

nu muh muk kha khh


Muhammadiyah grants scholarships to 1,419 Thailand students

Muh muk din

MUHAMMADIYAH as one of the major Muslim Organizations in Indonesia provided scholarships to 1,419 students of Thailand, general chairman of Muhammadiyah executive board Din Syamsuddin stated.

“Thousands of Thai Muslim university students have studied in a number of Muhammadiyah higher learning institutes in Java Island,” Din said here on Wednesday on the sidelines of attending Muhammadiyah 47th National Congress.

The scholarships were awarded to young Muslims from four provinces in Thailand in effort to gain knowledge in Indonesia which later will be applied in their country, he added.

“They study in Indonesia do not only relate to religious knowledge but also study at the faculty of agriculture, economics, technology, management and several other faculties,” he explained.

Muhammadiyah is holding its 47th National Congress here from August 3 through August 7.

At the congress, a new agenda for the next five years will be formulated, and a new leader to replace two-time chairman, Din Syamsuddin, will be elected.

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Said Aqil elected chairman of NU

nu Said-Aqil-Siradj-antara

KH SAID Aqil Siradj was re-elected as Chairman of Nahdlatul Ulama (NU) for the second period, on Thursday (6/8). He leads NU for 2015-2020 and was not chosen by voting.

In the election, there were two names that qualify as candidates of chairman, namely KH Said Aqil and KH As’ad Ali. KH Said got 287 votes, while KH As’ad got 107 voices. Acording to the rules of the election, the candidates should be supported by at least 99 voters.

However, after the results were announced, KH Sa’ad stated that he was not willing to be NU leader. Because of that, KH Said was immediately confirmed as Chairman of the NU.

Besides the two names, there were also other names that qualify to be candidates, namely KH Solahuddin Wahid or Gus Solah who got 10 votes, KH Hilmi Muhammadiyah with three votes, and other five names who got one vote.



NU Chairman: ‘Islam Nusantara’ (Archipelago Islam) not new sect

said aqil siradj

THE general chairman of Nahdlatul Ulama (NU) Islamic organizattion, Said Aqil Siradj, reiterated that “Islam Nusantara” (archipelago Islam) was no a new school or sect.

“It is not a new school or sect but it is the view of the Indonesian Muslims which is blended with the Nusantara culture,” he said at a discussion on “Strategy to Realize Indonesia without Human Rights Violations.”

He said Muslims in Indonesia were closely associated with the cultures of where they are living and this what has been the foundation of the concept of Islam Nusantara. “This is what differentiates us from our brothers in the Middle East,” he added.

He said the Islam Nusantara concept describes Indonesian Muslims who are blended with the local cultures created originally by loca communities which do not run against the shariah. “We must integrate with the culture as long as it is good and not against Islam as it will make Islam more beautiful. We cannot fight cultures so long as they are not against the shariah such as gambling, adultery, drinking and others,” he said.

When asked if he was not worried that it might in the future develop into a new sect Said Aqil said he was not and he believed clerics would always be there to prevent it from happening. “No I am not. I am convinced clerics will be there to prevent it and a lot has been written about it and they may be used as a reference,” he said.

NU is one of the biggest Islamic organizations in Indonesia. Said Aqil is now seeking reelection as chairman of the organization in the next congress in Jember, East Java, on August 1-5 that will also carry out the Islam Nusantara as its theme.

Thu, 30 July 2015



“Islam Nusantara” (Islam of Archipelago) Part 1


Azyumardi Azra

Prof Dr Azyumardi Azra

Prof Dr Azyumardi Azra

‘Islam Archipelago’, the latter term that currently found momentum in popularity, especially after Nahdlatul Ulama executive council (PBNU) made it the theme of the 33rd Congress of the NU in Jombang, East Java, on the next 1 to 5 August, 2015. The theme was exactly reads “Upholding ‘Islam Nusantara’ (Islam of Archipelago) as a civilization of Indonesia and the World “. The terms and this theme – apart of several problematic things were very relevant and timely in the context of a national or international.

The term ‘Islam of Archipelago’ also became discourse of Vice President Jusuf Kalla on various occasions. The last one, President Jokowi also used the term ‘Islam of Archipelago’ on the opportunity at ‘istighatsah kubra’ which held by NU in Jakarta, June 14, in the framework of the National Conference of NU Ulema and welcoming Ramadhan 1436 H / 2015 AD.

The author of (this coloumn of) “Resonance” and then requested a response by BBC London about ‘Islam of Archipelago’ which also mentioned by President Jokowi (Haedar Affan, The Polemic Behind the ‘Islam Archipelago’ term, BBC London, June 15, 2015). What is the meaning of ‘Islam of Archipelago’ term? Is this term something new?

In the international seminar NU pre-congress held by Kompas Daily (May 25, 2015) and the Committee of the 33rd Conference of NU, the author of “Resonance” was trying to explain the meaning of the term ‘Islam of Archipelago’. The term contains concepts and different connotations when applied to different regions of the archipelago.

The term ‘Islam of Archipelago’ was basically not new. This term referred to Islam in the archipelago or maritime continent (archipelago) which include not only the area that is now the state of Indonesia, but also Muslim region of Malaysia, southern Thailand (Patani), Singapore, South Philippines (Moro), and also Champa (Kampuchea).

With the coverage like that, ‘Islam of Archipelago’ are equals congruent with the ‘Southeast Asian Islam’. Academically, the last term was often used interchangeably with ‘Malay-Indonesian Islam’. The problem then, was it talks about ‘Islam of Archipelago’ or ‘Southeast Asian Islam’ or ‘Malay-Indonesian Islam’? Is ‘Islam of Archipelago’ has the distinction, both at the level of normative doctrine and social life, culture, and politics?

In the view of the author of “Resonance”, normatively doctrinal, ‘Islam of Archipelago’ was adhere to the Six Pillars of Faith and the Five Pillars of Islam which were similar to the other Ahlus-Sunnah wal-Jama’ah (Sunnah or Sunni) in any part of the Islamic world as agreed by majority authoritative scholars.

However, to a certain extent, the ‘Islam of Archipelago’ has its own distinction. This fact could be seen from, for example, Islamic orthodoxy archipelago well-established formed, especially since the 17th century when Jawi students like Nuruddin ar-Raniri, ‘Abdurrauf al-Singkili, and Muhammad Yusuf al-Maqassari back to the archipelago after studying for nearly two decades and involved in the ‘networks of ulema’, based in Mecca and Medina.

The orthodoxy of Islamic archipelago was simple has three main elements, the first, kalam (theology) Asy’ariyah; second, Shafi’i fiqh – though also received three other fiqh madhhabs of Sunni; Third, Sufism of al-Ghazali, both practiced individually or communally or through a more organized and completed of tariqah of Sufi with murshid, caliphs and students, and the ordinances of certain dhikr.

As a comparison, the orthodoxy of Islamic archipelago is in contrast to Saudi Arabia’s Islamic orthodoxy. In two conferences with the circles of scholars and intellectuals of Saudi Arabia in Riyadh and Wadi about 300 kilometers from Riyadh (3-7 / 1), the author of “Resonance” stated, Saudi Arabia’s Islamic orthodoxy contains only two elements, namely first, kalam (theology) of Salafi-Wahabi with Islam literal understanding and emphasis on Islam are ‘pure’.

With a view of kalam like that, in the perspective of the doctrine of Saudi Arabia’s Islamic orthodoxy, do not be surprised if a lot of other Muslims regarded as bid’ah dhalalah (misguided additional ritual) that will take them to hell. Including into bid’ah dhalalah is celebrating the Prophet Muhammad’s Birthday which celebrated crowded by Indonesian Muslims.
Second, Saudi Arabia’s Islamic orthodoxy elements were Hanbali fiqh which was the most stringent madhhab in the Islamic jurisprudence. Saudi Arabia’s Islamic orthodoxy did not include Sufism. Sufism was rejected precisely because it contained a lot of bid’ah dhalalah.

In both of these conference always appeared the question of Saudi Arabia participants which addressed to the author of “Resonance”. “Why do Muslim Indonesia likes to practice Sufism which contains a lot of bid’ah dhalalah?”.

This question could be understood which were departing from bias and prejudice against Sufism which in fact historically played an important role in increasing stages of Muslim spirituality and at the same time maintenance of Muslims integrity to face various challenges and historical reality.

Saudi Arabia Salafi-Wahabi Islamic orthodoxy was too dry and simple for Muslims in the archipelago. The Muslim people of the archipelago have been and continue to undergo the heritage to practice Islam which is rich and full of nuances. Author of “Resonance” is referred to it as ‘flowery Islam’ with a ‘ritual’ since Tahlil, nyekar (scattering the flowers to the grave) or pilgrimage the grave, walimatus-Safar (walimatul haj / Umrah), walimatul khitan, tasyakuran up to four monthly or seven monthly pregnancies.

Monday, 22 June 2015

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Muhammadiyah plans a ‘National Car’

Solar-powered car 'Suryawangsa 2' and 'Giwangkara' manufactured by Gondanglegi Vocational Secondary School (SMK) of Muhammadiyah in Malang, East Java, and SMK Haurgeulis of  Muhammadiyah in  Indramayu, West Java,  The second car was launched at the Muhammadiyah HQ in Jakarta last December  Photo: CNN Indonesia / Lalu Rahadian)

Solar-powered car ‘Suryawangsa 2’ and ‘Giwangkara’ manufactured by Gondanglegi Vocational Secondary School (SMK) of Muhammadiyah in Malang, East Java, and SMK Haurgeulis of Muhammadiyah in Indramayu, West Java, The second car was launched at the Muhammadiyah HQ in Jakarta last December Photo: CNN Indonesia / Lalu Rahadian)

Randi Fabi and Klara Virencia

FED up with capitalists plundering Indonesia’s riches, members of the country’s second-largest Islamic group have drawn up plans to launch a “people’s power” movement.

On top of their list: build a national car.

If realized, the Muhammadiyah group’s ambition would revive a project launched by autocratic leader Suharto’s son, Tommy, in 1996 but halted during the Asian financial crisis just two years later. As yet, though, its plans for the car are sketchy.

A century-old Islamic group in the country which has the largest number of Muslims in the world, Muhammadiyah is known mainly for its ubiquitous schools and hospitals. But it also has ambitions to break into tourism, food and the fishing sectors.

The group’s push to become a force in the economic and corporate spheres has been spurred by the success of its so-called “constitutional jihad”, which has dealt legal blows to private participation in the energy and water sectors and now threatens to reverse the convertibility of the currency.

Muhammadiyah, which has some 30 million followers, believes it has a mission to protect Southeast Asia’s largest economy from globalization and capitalistic policies that favor foreign investors over Indonesians. But its campaign could derail President Joko Widodo’s already stumbling efforts to attract desperately needed investment from abroad.

“Muhammadiyah is now in the middle of a struggle between a capitalist economic system and a socialist economic system,” said Syafrudin Anhar, head of the group’s economic committee.

“The world will not reach peace and prosperity through political intrigue, but rather through economic balance.”

Indonesia’s largest Islamic group, Nahdlatul Ulama, also funds schools and hospitals, but is not overtly political.

Muhammadiyah, thee years ago, challenged parts of the oil and gas law, saying they violated a constitutional tenet that all land, water and natural resources must be controlled by the state. Its victories in that case became the opening salvo in what became known as a “constitutional jihad”.

The group now has 115 laws in its sights, including legislation on foreign exchange, investment and the power sector, and also plans to challenge Widodo’s decision to scrap fuel subsidies, his boldest policy step so far.

“We are not against foreign investors as long as there are clear limitations on foreign involvement in economic sectors,” Anhar said.

Anhar and a small group of mainly Muhammadiyah economic professors gathered this month for a three-day conference in the town of Palembang to draft an economic battle plan for the next five years.

Once finalised, the blueprint will be submitted for approval at the group’s national congress in August.

The plan is to consolidate small Muhammadiyah businesses into industry-specific companies that will receive initial funding through a network of micro-financing cooperatives.

Muhammadiyah sees opportunities to cash in on the growing demand for halal food and halal tourism in Indonesia.

As for the national car, its vocational schools have already built several proto-types of a model called the Esemka, which was used by Widodo as his official vehicle when he was mayor of the city of Surakarta or Solo.

One proto-type can run on solar energy, said Bambang Setiadji, professor at Solo’s Muhammadiyah University (UMS).

“To establish such an industry, it is not that difficult,” he said. “UMS has given birth to many automotive industry engineers whose quality competes with those of China’s.”

The group hopes to get Widodo’s backing to start mass production of the Esemka this year under a partnership between an Indonesian and a Chinese company that would aim to source up to 80 percent of its components from Indonesia.

“We want our own companies and to make products for the middle and lower class,” said Nadrattuzaman Hosen of the group’s economic council. “The difference will be that our profits will not go to the rich overseas, but will remain at home and go to our people.”

(Additional reporting by Klara Virencia in JAKARTA; Editing by John Chalmers and Raju Gopalakrishnan)

The Rector of University of Muhammadiyah Malang (UMM) Dr. Muhadjir Effendy, M.AP launched electric car of 'UMM Sport' in front of Student Center (SC) in November 2012. The car participated in IEMC (Indonesia Energy Marathon Challenger) contest at Kenjeran circuit, Surabaya.

The Rector of University of Muhammadiyah Malang (UMM) Dr. Muhadjir Effendy, M.AP launched electric car of ‘UMM Sport’ in front of Student Center (SC) in November 2012. The car participated in IEMC (Indonesia Energy Marathon Challenger) contest at Kenjeran circuit, Surabaya.