zondag 8 januari 2017


Indonesians have often long names. They like to make acronyms  and it is a sign of being somewhat a celeb or celebrity of this acronym is used by many people. Best known is Haji Abdulmalik ibn Abdulkarim Amrullah or Hamka. Abdulrahman Wahid was simply Gus Dur. MNI is not so widely known, but maybe in the near future?
Muhammad Nur Ichwan is the director of the Graduate School at UIN, Universitas Islam Negeri in Yogyakarta. He sent a long series, more than 100 pictures of his whereabouts and ideas in 2016. It was a nice variation of seminars in Indonesia, visits abroad, debates about what is now going on in the modern and liberal Muslim circles of the country.
I include a copy of three of these.
Deradicalisation or attacking the attractivity of the Islamic State of Syria and Iraq (IS or ISIS). the text in top shows the attractivity: going to Syria is called hijrah with the religious connotation of exodus, leaving a bad or terrible country towards a promised land, with a true caliph (a reference to the myth of the 'four righteous caliph', a golden era).Hijrah has here perhaps also the connotation of a religious pilgrimage.
The only negative argument is that Daesh (Dawlat Islamic fi Iraq wa Sham) is brutally killing people, burns them. In serious debates some humour may be good. This is not really a good joke, as to my perception.
A picture of Muhammad Nur Ichwan, reading a book with the title: I am a Radical Muslim.
In 1970-1 I did research for my PhD on the education system of Indonesian Muslims. the most important place for my research was the boarding school or pesantren of Gontor. At that time it was all male only. Since the 1970s the school has expanded much. It still uses good Arabic, but here it prefers English for tyhe entrance of one of the several boardng schools for girls. This is MNI with his wife and in the middle probably their daughter.

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