Islamic Cleric among Indonesian “Modernist” Muslims

…it would be a problematic to generalize the norm of Islamic Clerics among Indonesian Modernist Muslims. The ‘faces’ of modernist Muslims are changing just as other institutions where polarization is one of the characteristics. The clerical authority among reformist Muslim in Indonesia is now, especially after reformation era, more multipolar and more plural than ever before.

Muslims ScholarsMuhammadiyah did play important and significant role in establishing and maintaining clerical authorities among the modernist in the Old Order and the New Order, especially in the urban area as well as national political landscape. Muhammadiyah had special “relationship” with the two Presidents of Indonesia, Soekarno, and Soeharto. Both of them openly declared that they were Muhammadiyah cadres.

In the New Order era, almost all the minister of religious affairs are from the modernist Muslims wing, such as Mukti Ali, Munawarir Sadzali, Tarmidzi Tahir, and Malik Fadjar. The leader of MUI at the New Order era was also mostly from Muhammadiyah backgrounds, such as Hamka, E.Z. Muttaqin, and Hasan Basri. Muhammadiyah Bureaucrat also dominated in the Department of Religious Affairs (DEPAG). Continue reading “Islamic Cleric among Indonesian “Modernist” Muslims”