MUHAMMADIYAH.OR.ID, SURAKARTA – The Chair of the Muhammadiyah Council for Tabligh Fathurrahman Kamal affirmed that “Kristen Muhammadiyah/Krismuha” (Muhammadiyah Christians) is not a theological term. It went viral, and many netizens misunderstood it.
It is a sociological term similar to ‘Munu‘ (Muhammadiyah-Nahdlatul Ulama) or ‘Musa‘ (Muhammadiyah-Salafi).
“Do not assume that ‘Kristen Muhammadiyah‘ refers to Christians who perform religious practices at mosque. It isn’t like that at all,” said Fathurrahman at the National Seminar on ‘A Treatise on Progressive Islam’ conducted by Universitas Muhammadiyah Surakarta on Wednesday (31/5).
Most students at Muhammadiyah higher education institutions in eastern Indonesia are non-Muslims. The number of Muslims is approximately 10 percent only.
“I, several times, became a speaker on the orientation day at Muhammadiyah higher education institutions. Most of the students were non-Muslims. They felt comfortable with Islamic practices at the institutions because they were not intimidated, discriminates, and bullied despite religious differences. They appreciated the tolerance of Muhammadiyah,” told Fathurrahman.
The viral phenomenon of the ‘Kristen Muhammadiyah‘ showed the low literacy of many netizens. In fact, it has existed in Muhammadiyah since a long time ago.
“Dear netizens, don’t be overreacting emotionally to the term. It is only a sociological term and has nothing to do with a theological aspect,” said Fathurrahman.
Netizens, particularly those affiliated with Muhammadiyah, may refrain from overreacting and assuming that Muhammadiyah has strayed from its core principles. Indeed, they should enhance their literacy, so they will not easily believe misleading information.