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Faithful urged to redefine religious standards

Adaptation of ideals to changes in Indonesian society 'can avert conflict'

Abdul Muhaimin (far left) and Susetiawan (second from right) speak at the seminar Abdul Muhaimin (far left) and Susetiawan (second from right) speak at the seminar
  • Stefanus Tartono, Yogyakarta
  • Indonesia
  • February 9, 2011
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A Muslim co-founder and head of Indonesia’s Brotherhood Forum of Faithful has called on religious leaders and laypeople to re-assess religious standards in a changing society to create more harmonious interreligious relations.

Faithful must be brave and change their theological, doctrinal and centralistic paradigms of religious life into realistic, ethical and humane paradigms of life implementation, according to Abdul Muhaimin.

“These kinds of paradigms will be able to embrace basic issues in daily life, such as justice, poverty and human rights.” he said.

Muhaimin was addressing 200 participants at a February 6 seminar in Yogyakarta to mark the forum’s 14th anniversary.

“Here the relationship between human beings and God can be cemented in the relationship between human beings,” he added.

In relationships between human beings, he said, there is wide interreligious cooperation to promote peace in this world.

“Through this cooperation, [God willing], violence resulting from misunderstandings among faithful can be removed,” he said.

Another speaker, Susetiawan, from the University of Gadjah Mada agreed

Violence committed in the name of God happens in all religions, and the main reason could be people’s failure to adapt to social changes, he suggested.

“We adopt a new term, such as democracy-humanist. This should be followed by a change in egalitarian social structure. In fact, however, our social structure remains hierarchical. So people are easily provoked by social issues, and the response is usually violence,” the sociologist said.



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