Making sense of Indonesia’s diversity by reflecting on our own wholeness

Making sense of Indonesia’s diversity by reflecting on our own wholeness

By Wirrye


By: A Jefrino Fahik*

How can we interpret the reality of Indonesia’s diversity in the midst of rampant practices of intolerance? Even more complicated, how can we knit unity from the reality of diversity?

This question needs to be constantly reflected on because until now the fact of diversity in Indonesia is still seen by some as a problem.

Even though the discourse on it has always been intense, apparently this subject has not been fully accepted by Indonesian society. In fact, our experience in the last twenty years has increasingly shown a strong tendency towards the practice of monoculturalism.

Also Read: The Beauty of Diversity and the Importance of Tolerance in Plural and Religious Life

Recent incidents of intolerance such as the forced cessation of worship at the Kemah Daud Christian Church, in Rajabasa Jaya Village, Rajabasa District, Bandar Lampung City on Sunday, February 19 2023 are examples of cases that can be pointed out straightforwardly.

This incident adds to the long list of practices of religious intolerance in Indonesia, which at first glance will increase ahead of the 2024 elections.

We must admit that there is something wrong with such a way of nation and state. Those who have always been intolerant actually have ambitions to homogenize differences (monoculturalism), at the same time they secretly want to destroy the integrity of the nation, while celebrating the narrowness of ethnic, racial and religious primordialism.

Also Read: Cases of Religious Intolerance Increase in Brazil Religious Freedom March

In fact, the reality of diversity is given because it is given by the generous nature.

Flawed Consciousness

However much intolerance is often racial or religious in nature, it must be said that the problem goes beyond mere sensory observation. What is visible, actually has a much deeper root problem, namely the problem of defective consciousness.

Therefore, sociologically observable intolerance practices (race, religion, ethnicity, group) can actually be traced to their deepest roots. Why? Because the symptom of intolerance which is so deeply rooted in the Republic is not an accidental act, but the result of a causal phenomenon involving human action with its social facts (social facts).

Emile Durkheim (1858-1917), a French classical sociologist, said that such social phenomena are closely related to collective consciousness. That is, the attitudes, actions, and patterns of individual consciousness are not monistic phenomena but rather an accumulation of various individual actions an sich attached to the structure of social consciousness. This action represented what Durkheim called, social effervescence (social climate).