Indonesia: Reform of religious schools

Amana Media Initiative
Islamic boarding schools in Indonesia are moving to promote a sense of civic nationalism alongside religious education to help stop violence committed in the name of religion, reports AMANA.
A conference of leaders from traditional Islamic boarding schools, or pesantren, around Indonesia has agreed upon the inclusion of civic education within the schools, to encourage ideas of the rights of all citizens regardless of religion or background.
The decision arose due to concerns that the use of violence in the name of religion was increasing, the Jakarta Post reported.

Clerics from the Muslim organisation Nadlatul Ulama also called for a dialogue with hardliners to discuss concepts such as jihad (Islamic holy war), dzimmi (non-Muslims living in Islamic states) and kafir (infidel) and their definition in a modern context.

Pesantren have often been subject to accusations of inciting extremism in the past, however the majority of the approximately 14,000 schools in Indonesia teach a moderate form of Islam.

1 April 2008

Source: Amana Media Initiative