Religious Differences & Pluralism
November 29th, 2008, in Opinion, by Ross 

Ross on the bigotry of teachers of religion in Islamic schools, ideological 
jilbabs, and Dewi Persik.

Schools Run by Nutters
The Jakarta Post recently gave front page attention to a survey (by an Islamic 
college, Pusat Pengkajian Islam dan Masyarakat (PPIM)) of Muslim "religious 
teachers" which indicates that a large percentage of them are benighted savages.

This in itself may come as no surprise but what is particularly disturbing is 
the fact that a clear majority of these ignoramuses are affiliated to the 
so-called "moderate, main-stream" Muslim bodies, the NU (44.9% ) and 
Muhammadiyah (23.8%).

While their enthusiasm for cutting off thieves' hands is a matter of taste, 
their notion that stoning ought to be applicable to people convicted of "other 
crimes" is abominable. (One hopes they will go easy on parking violations and 

I'm no softy pinko and I'm all for tough penalties, but we know how primitive 
Aceh is, beatings administered by cowards in masks to guys who play cards for 
small change or teeny-boppers who get caught canoodling - are we really looking 
at a situation whereby thousands, millions, maybe, of young Muslims all over 
Indonesia are indoctrinated into this kind of garbage by semi-educated 

Over 21% of the nutters think anybody smart enough to convert out of Islam 
should be murdered. An incredible 85.6% abuse their positions to tell kids not 
to go to 'Western' festivals - i.e. if a young Muslim lad wants to go to his 
Christian pal's Christmas party, he's affronting his own religion. Sounds to me 
that there is a degree of insecurity in these pesantren senior common rooms - 
do they think the joyful festivities might seem more appealing than sonorous 

Again, much the same percentage says it is impermissible even to learn about 
other religions! How asinine (and in this case hopefully self-defeating - if 
you tell a teen he's not allowed to know about something, he's likely to get 
into it PDQ).

These morons, 73.1% of those surveyed, object to having churches or other 
faiths' houses of worship in their neighbourhoods. Insecurity again! Bet they'd 
be the first to whine if Brits or Aussies object to a cacophany of mosques 
being erected in Sydney or Birmingham. 

Yet 75% urge students to urge their contemporaries to convert to Islam. How 
they'd manage to demolish tenets of other faiths if they may not first make 
themselves aware of their target's current beliefs is a fascinating point which 
may be too complex for neanderthal imams to take on board.

When I worked in the West, I had numerous Muslim colleagues, exemplary in their 
prayers and other religious obligations but happy to join in the office Xmas 
knees-up. Thus I had a very open mind towards Islam when I came here. I find it 
harder and harder to maintain this, despite the many normal,sensible Muslims I 
meet and with whom I agree on a great many issues. Moderate Muslims abound, but 
they are not calling the shots.

The bad guys evidently have the whip-hand in education and politically, well, 
recall my post about the mayor of Tangerang, a man of mediaeval mentality, who 
nevertheless got the entire spectrum of "moderate" and even "nationalist" 
parties to back his bid for re-election. Now we read of the PDI-P and the PKS 
playing footsie, despite the candour with which the latter's leading lights 
admit their long-term goal of suffocating Indonesia under a giant ideological 

It's just too grim to contemplate, especially for those who never want to leave 
these islands.

Okay, that's today's rail - but just as a playful idea, how about we give the 
sharia gang something to keep them busy.

The PKS has supplied a number for the public (and that surely includes expats) 
to nominate women whose activities are an inspiration to Indonesia. It was in 
24/11 Jakarta Post - 0856 7007 699 - and I'm strongly tempted to sms the name 
of a truly inspirational Indonesian female, the delightful Dewi Perssik! I 
doubt if they'll go by the democratic method of total smses received, but it 
would be great if she got more than anybody else. On the other hand, guess the 
PKS wouldn't let on!

Tags: Aceh, Beliefs, Christmas, Churches, Dewi Persik, Education, Faiths, 
Islam, Islamic, Islamic Schools, Jakarta Post, Jilbab, Moderate, Muhammadiyah, 
Muslim, Muslims, Nahdlatul Ulama, NU, Partai Keadilan Sejahtera, Pesantren, 
PKS, Pluralism, Religion, Religions, Religious, Schools, Sharia, Students, 
Tangerang, Women

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