Is Khilafah Still Relevant to be Implemented (in Indonesia)?

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Indonesia is the country with the largest Muslim population in the world. As a consequence, Indonesia has some problems that cannot be solved by simple solution or a shortcut which is called khilafah. The definition of khilafah here is still absurd because khilafah is proposed only to show secularism sentiment. Without enough knowledge about islam, khilafah is only an imagination.

In our social life, we cannot show off our theological argument and blame other religion. Nevertheless, we have to build the unity without questioning the diversities in our lovely country. In other words, we cannot reveal sectarian issues that will destroy our nation’s unity.

Islamic shariah, in term of “Islam Rahmatan lil Aalamiin”, is substantial-inclusive, not the formalization of Islam in nation territory. It means that we should put forward the Islamic law more substantially than just formalization in the form of “khilafah” so it can be said that the spirit is a substantial spirit, rather than symbolic.

Therefore, we have to think more intelligently; do not follow our desire without considering our nation’s complexities. We must be able to create synergy with the Indonesian cultures and adopt them as long as they do not contradict with the Islamic principle.

Concerning educational solutions by promoting Islamic shariah is a good offer. But if Islamic shariah is applied, there must be some conditions that must be fulfilled. If it does not meet the conditions, it will break the Islamic shariah itself. Today’s ways, methods, strategies, and approaches that are implemented are already based on Indonesian culture. Therefore, the solution is needed to solve the problems.

Among the Islamic political experts, there are three mainstream opinions. First, Islam empirically has established Islamic countries, but Islam does not standardize the form and system of the Islamic state. Islam has given a universal political ethos and valuable ​​principles that can be applied in the system of government and the form of state, according to the demands and needs of society (al-Syura wa Atsaruha fi al-Dimoqratiyah: Dr. Abd. Hamid al-Anshari, 1980).

Second, Islam is a religion and also a state (al-Islam din wad daulah). The reason is that the power of a state is a strategic instrument to benefit the society. Therefore, there is no dichotomy between the religion and the state.  Since the state’s and government’s problems cannot be separated from Islam, there is no reason to make a new political system that against the system implemented by the great prophet Muhammad SAW (Abu A’la Maudud, Nadlariyat al-Islam al-Siyasah).

Third, Islam is only deals with religion only (din fahasbu). The reason is that the great prophet Muhammad SAW only taught Islam as religion not interfered by state or political affairs. If the prophet Muhammad SAW demanded the leadership and the power of sultan to the people, it does not mean that he taught political leadership or governmental power, but it was only religious leadership that does not have any relationship with interests power (Dr. Ali Abdurraziq in “al-Islam wa Ushul al-Hukm”).

According to Munawir Sadzali, in his book Islam and Governmental System, it is concluded that in Islam there is no standardization of the system of government, but Islam has provided basic principles in implementing the government. Therefore, these principles can be applied in a variety of existing governance systems.

The same opinion is also proposed by Islamic thinker, Afif A Thobarah. He states that the Qur’an does not define the form or standard system that should be implemented as a system of Islamic governance. Islam also does not determine the way of structuring power, but Islam establishes some principles that become a reference for Muslims in implementing the government wherever and whenever they want, whether it is a republic, a kingdom, a federal state. If the system of government is standardized with one kind of system, it will provide difficulties (al-haraj) for Muslims throughout the social life.

The basic principles that are proposed by Islam as a guidence for leaders including kings, sultans, presidents, governors, regents are: honesty and responsibility (as-shidqu wa al-amanah), justice (al-‘adalah), deliberation (as-syura), equality (al-musawah), the benefit of the people (al-masalhalih li ar-raiyyah), freedom (al-hurriyah), brotherhood or unity ( al-ukhuwah). These seven principles are highly expected to be applied by leaders to create the welfare and prosperity of the people.

As long as we live in a country or a state, we cannot avoid form political dynamics. Moreover, when refers to al-Ghazali’s opinion in al-Iqtishad fi al-I’tiqad about the relationship between religion and political power. According to him, the existence of a country or state is a must to create a harmony world. World order is a must to create a religious order. Religious order is the way to get successful akhirat. By using this argument, Al Ghazali has brought political area into spiritual dimension. This affirmation is stated with another expression, the necessary of Imam is religious necessary. Religion is the basic and sultan is the doer. Based on that argument, there is a theory that believes politics cannot be separated from religion. In this case, religion must become a value and political ethics.

According to KH. Afifuddin Muhajir (the lecturer of Ma’had Aly Sukorejo Situbondo), one of Ushul Fiqh expert, the leader is essensially the successor (khilafah), continuing the prophetic task; preserving the religion and managing the world. Al Mawardi states that Al-Imamah maudhu’atun li-khilafin nubuwah fi hirasadid ddin wa siyasatid dunya.

According to Mawardi, there are some important requirements of khilafah system; first, the country is conducive, safe, and comfortable place to practice the religion for its adherents. Second, the leaders seriously think and work for the welfare of the people, so that the justice and prosperity can be manifested. Therefore, Indonesia as a unitary sovereign state and transcontinental country, with Pancasila as the national ideology, is very potential to become khilafah country, khilafah nubuwwah, not khilafah proposed by HTI.

Nowadays, the government must prevent the left and right extremities based on Pancasila as the national ideology. If the government cannot do that, it can cause instability of the country. Therefore, let us fully support the efforts of the government to welfare the people, to become a dignified country that implements the substances of Islamic values. The last, we have to remember that if a religion does not have a state, the religion cannot be implemented safely and comfortably. On the other hand, if the state is absolutely separated from the religion, it means that we are waiting for the destruction of the country.


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