Indonesia is not Ahok

A little disclaimer: This article is a translation from an Indonesian article titled ‘Indonesia Bukan Ahok’ uploaded in by Fahd Pahdepie.

Indonesia is NOT Ahok

After the deliberation from the court regarding the case which had befallen upon Ahok, our nation is drifting apart. Indonesia seems to be divided into two extreme and equally stubborn sides:

The first side, let’s just call them pro-Ahok, who thought Indonesia is full of the bigots and stupids. Consistently, this side thinks that what happened to Ahok is the fruit of stupidity of those who were against Ahok – and they called these people ‘Pretentiously Holy’ who hides behind the cloak of religion. In social media, they think as if Indonesia is in the process of being Syria, have the tendency to insert snide remarks about Islam and muslims, and tongue that is used to deplore the ulama (clerics).

The second side, they are more than happy to see Ahok got punished for blasphemy. They are somehow extremely worried that Islam is in danger. They think that those who are against them – particularly pro-Ahok – are the people who will rot in hell. This side is equally ‘funny’, actually, as they think everyone (including Jokowi obviously) and every groups outside their own group is conspiring to destroy Islam… that they were the persecuted victims. They are joining forces with scores of festivals and thought that their side has been oppressed and criminalised.

Has Indonesia been divided this extreme already? If we look at our timeline in social media, I think the answer is ‘yes’. We were seemingly dragged into this pseudo-reality that showed the showdown between the two sides, both think they were correct and deserved to win.

For both sides, I would like to express my disgust!

To the first side:

Indonesia will not fall after Ahok’s case! Stop overreacting. Stop thinking that you guys are the only ones who know Pancasila and Bhinneka Tunggal Ika really well. Stop feeling that you are the most tolerant, pluralist, and well-versed on democracy. To me, you are nothing more than a bunch of people who felt the most tolerant and at the same time utterly discriminative towards those not in line with your beliefs.

Stop saying someone is a ‘bigot’ whilst snidely looking at them who are trying to strengthen their faith into their religion. If you want to be respected as a true democrat, stop thinking that muslims who practice their religion as camel folks who want to make Indonesia Middle East. Stop pretending you are the smartest whilst thinking everyone else is ‘flat earth people’. Stop pretending to be the most modern, the greatest, the most Indonesian, most Pancasila, most Bhinneka Tunggal Ika by the way of clashing NU with other Islamic groups, Banser with FPI, while insulting the ulama, clerics, habibs that you could only see their bad sides.

If you are a muslim in this side, don’t feel you are the most Islamic while still do ‘fatwa shopping’, choosing and following only the fatwas that you like. Stop bully the clerics while knowing Indonesia was also fought for by these people up to its independence! While feeling proud, where are you when your fellow muslims were insulted and disgraced? What do you want to be called when you were in bed with the groups who were happy to vilify your religion? What happened with you? Which demon possessed your soul?

To the second side:

Stop being the digital version of “frog in a shell” (Ardi’s comment: this is an Indonesian saying for someone who were so out of touch with his/her environment)! Go out and see the real world: The people you suspect of destroying your religion might only just be part of your whiny and inferior imagination. Stop feeling that God is only yours to have and Goodness is only on your side. Have conscience that your tafsir (view) on something does not have to be forced upon to oppress different views. Don’t feel that you are the only truth, don’t feel that heaven is already prepared for your kinds.

Indonesia comprises of different tribes, ethnicities, religions, languages, classes, et cetera. Don’t dream about making them uniformed. Don’t dream about converting everyone and denying the fate of Bhinneka in this country. If you are a truly religious person, want to be person of takwa, and follow syari’ah completely, please, you have every rights and obviously it’s very good for you… HOWEVER, don’t cynically view others different than you, mate! Don’t label people as ‘kafir’, label people as hypocrites, finger pointing people as sinners, just because you have a different political imagination about this country. So you know, this country is not designed to be a religious country that pretends everyone has uniformed credo and beliefs.

Equally important, stop thinking that the leaders, who happened to be not your choice, are trying to oppress you and criminalise your idols. Stop imagining that this country is being tormented by God just because the leaders are not to your taste. In politics, the ultimate bargain for those playing inside is interests… Therefore, everyone entering the political arena is by no means holy and free of all of that: Please know that everyone who you think is holy, have committed a sin for groups opposing them… and everyone who you think is sinner, is meritorious to those whose rights they defended. That’s politics.

For both sides:

This is Indonesia. Indonesia is not Ahok! Indonesia is not Habib Rizieq! Indonesia is not Jokowi, Megawati, SBY, Prabowo, Wiranto, Gatot Nurmantyo, Anies Baswedan, or everyone else. Indonesia is not Islam, Christian, Catholic, Hindu, Buddha, Confucianism, or any other religions. Indonesia is not a certain class or ethnicity. Indonesia is everything. Indonesia is a synthesis and compound of those we hate and those we love. Indonesia grows from blessings and kindness of its citizens, as well as filths and sins of those breedings atop its land and water.

Stop debating. Stop arguing. Stop feeling you are the most correct. Stop trying to be a lone winner. Indonesia is destroyed not because one side is trying to oppress the other or vice versa. Indonesia is destroyed because these sides who claimed to be the most Indonesia continuously trying to grind and destroy.

Ahok is a political actor. He got defeated in a political battle, by other political actors who happened to be his enemies at this point. And what about us? We are¬†just a bunch of extras and supporters who got emotionally ignited, consciousness ransacked, divided and conquered, psychologically and mentally clashed, for other political interests…¬†engineered by other political actors. If we want to get out of this vicious political circle: Never mind all of that, don’t crowd this disgusting political stage. Don’t create any kinds of solidarity. Don’t overreact.

For all of you:

Don’t be afraid to not join any sides trending recently, don’t be afraid to be yourself even if it means being alone. When we die, we will be buried in our own grave.

I am writing this with a mentality to be called anything, commented anything, whatever. If you feel the same way, please share. If you don’t agree, shower me to your heart’s content. Whatever!

Fahd Pahdepie




1 Comment

  1. biro umroh resmi di sleman on February 3, 2019 at 2:24 AM

    Enjoyed reading the article above , really explains everything in detail, the article is very interesting and effective. Thank you and good luck in the upcoming articles

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