Muslim diversity: Islam and local tradition in Java and Sulawesi, Indonesia

Muhammad Ali

Abstract


Based on some historical and anthropological accounts, this article examines a
dynamic interplay between Islam and local tradition in Indonesia with special
reference to Java and Sulawesi. It explains how local Muslims differed in their
interpretation and application of Islam. It looks at processes of religious change
as a world religion interacts with local forces. The “localization” of Islam was a
constant feature in the expansion of Islam beyond the Arab homeland, including
Southeast Asia. Based on the framework of ‘practical Islam’, rather than ‘normative
Islam’, and on the framework of both accommodation and conflict between
shari’ah and adat as a whole system, rather than as separate entities, it provides
a greater variety of Islamic beliefs and experiences. Comparatively, Javanese
people have been more diverse than Sulawesi people in terms of religious spectrum;
Muslims in Java have incorporated animism, Hinduism, Buddhism, and
Islam into their culture system. Stories about the nine saints show how early
Islamic preachers sought to accommodate Islam with local traditions. In Sulawesi,
Dato ri Bandang and the other teachers, representing the elite aristocracy who
attempted to Islamize the kingdoms and the people alike and Syeikh Yusuf, representing
a strict kind of Islam, show diversity but tends to suggest a less diverse
picture, when compared to Java. Despite internal diversity in Java as well as in
Sulawesi, Java has remained more open and tolerant with cultural diversity,
whereas Sulawesi has increasingly become more legalistic.

 

Berdasarkan kajian sejarah dan antropologis, artikel ini membahas hubungan
dinamis antara Islam dan budaya lokal di Indonesia dengan rujukan khusus pada
Jawa dan Sulawesi. Artikel ini menjelaskan bagaimana orang Islam lokal berbeda
dalam memahami dan menerapkan Islam. Artikel ini melihat proses-proses
perubahan keagamaan ketika agama dunia bergumul dengan kekuatan-kekuatan
lokal. Lokalisasi Islam adalah ciri tetap dalam penyebaran Islam melampaui tanah
Arab, termasuk Asia Tenggara. Berdasarkan kerangka “Islam sebagaimana yang
dipraktekkan” (‘Islam praktikal’), bukan ‘Islam normatif’ dan kerangka akomodasi
dan konflik antara syari’ah dan adat sebagai sistem yang menyeluruh, bukan
realitas yang terpisah, artikel ini menawarkan kemajemukan kepercayaan dan
pengalaman Islam. Secara komparatif, orang-orang Jawa lebih majemuk daripada
orang-orang Sulawesi dalam hal spektrum keagamaan. Orang-orang Islam di
Jawa memasukkan animism, agama Hindu dan Buddha, dan Islam kedalam
sistem budaya mereka. Cerita-cerita tentang wali songo menunjukkan bagaimana
penyebar-penyebar Islam awal berusaha mengakomodasi Islam dengan budayabudaya
lokal. Di Sulawesi, Dato ri Bandang dan guru-guru lainnya, yang mewakili
kaum bangsawan yang berusaha melakukan pengislaman kerajaan-kerajaan dan
orang-orang, dan Syeikh Yusuf yang mewakili kaum yang lebih tegas, menunjukkan
keragaman keagamaan, namun tidak semajemuk di Jawa. Meskipun ada
kemajemukan di Jawa dan di Sulawesi, Jawa tampaknya lebih terbuka dan toleran
dengan perbedaan budaya, sedangkan Sulawesi menunjukkan kecenderungan
yang legalistik. Namun demikian, keagamaan jangan dipahami bersifat statis,
liner, lengkap, dan selesai.


Keywords


Adat (tradition); Sharia; Ethnicity; Practical Islam; Localization

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.18326/ijims.v1i1.1-35

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