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Jakarta Post

Your letters: Dialogue on religion, nationalism in Turkey

  • The Jakarta Post

    The Jakarta Post

  /   Tue, March 22, 2016   /  07:36 am

Amid the heat and chaos in Turkey after the Saturday bombs that killed four people, Indonesians gathered in Istanbul to raise awareness of terrorism and radicalism by holding a dialogue about religion and nationalism under the title '€œIslam and current conditions in Turkey and Indonesia'€.

As a speaker, the Indonesian ambassador in Turkey came to share his views. Mr. Wardana said that in the last few years, Indonesians'€™ tendency to join radical group Daesh has increased. They were mostly trapped by big economic incentives with high salaries.

He continued that at least 200 Indonesians in the last few years had tried to cross the border to Syria from Turkey. They mostly are provoked by bias and a wrong interpretation of Islam. He further elaborated that he had experienced meeting governors in Turkey who were amazed by the religious tolerance in predominantly Muslim Indonesia.

The event, which was held on Sunday in Istanbul, was attended by nearly 50 Turkish students.

The event was organized by Muhammadiyah'€™s special branch and spread by Radio PPI Istanbul.

Dr. Haedar Nashir, the leader of Muhammadiyah Indonesia, was the other speaker at the dialogue. He argued that Islam was a light in history, bringing a fresh and illuminated civilization. Islam in Madinah came as an organized civilization rather than sword verses that many people wrongly interpreted.

Thus, he asked Indonesians wherever they are to always show good morals and ethics and also to work diligently with knowledge and intelligence. Islam should not be seen merely as rituals but as a light that brings people to work and create peace.

The outlook of this dialogue was to moderate the understanding of religion and nationalism so that Indonesians are not trapped by big salary incentives from Daesh or deluded by wrong interpretations of Islam.

Thus Indonesians should keep their peaceful nature and show the world that peace is an aspiration that can be achieved.

Ahmad Nursalim
Istanbul, Turkey