MUHAMMADIYAH.OR.ID, YOGYAKARTA – Since the era of Kiai Ahmad Dahlan, Muhammadiyah has been devoted to fostering the intellectual development of Muslims by integrating dichotomous elements. Muhammadiyah fuses religious teachings and science through modern Islamic education.
Robert W. Hefner, professor of anthropology at Boston University, mentioned that Muhammadiyah and its figures, as Former Chair of the Muhammadiyah Council for Islamic Thought and Judgement from 1995 to 2000 Prof. Amin Abdullah, has been contributing to contemporary Islamic civilization.
“I wholeheartedly support and deeply appreciate Muhammadiyah’s efforts, especially the remarkable contributions of Pak Amin Abdullah over the past 15 years. His reinterpretation of maqashid syariah, tracing its roots back over a thousand years to As-Syatibi, has enabled its effective application in both theoretical and practical aspects of Islamic higher education,” expressed Hefner in the book launching ‘Filsuf Membumi dan Mencerahkan: Menyemai dan Menuai Legacy Pemikiran Amin Abdullah’ (Enlightening Modest Philosopher: Cultivating and Gaining the Legacy of Amin Abdullah’s Thoughts) conducted by the Muhammadiyah Council for Islamic Thought and Judgement on Friday (July 28).
In the modern world, Islam faces significant challenges in education. Hefner emphasized that Muslims should not fear empiricism; rather, it can serve as a powerful means to connect fiqh (Islamic jurisprudence) with contemporary issues. Thus, it enables the implementation of Maqashid As-Syariah. Muhammadiyah and its educational leaders have successfully developed this integration.
“Considerable efforts have been undertaken to revive the coexistence of fiqh with an understanding and engagement in empiricism, justice, and fundamental principles. In my view, attaining justice—a cornerstone of Islamic tradition—necessitates instruments that explore the empirical world and utilize social sciences to uphold justice, equality, and sacred principles,” said Hefner.
Speaking about Prof. Amin Abdullah, Hefner praised his contribution to rejuvenating a fresh perspective that bridges religious teachings with empirical sciences like natural and social sciences, allowing them to interact and intertwine seamlessly.
“I deeply admire Pak Amin Abdullah, not only as a distinguished figure in Muhammadiyah and among Indonesian Muslims but also as someone who has made extraordinary contributions that extend beyond Indonesia, positively impacting the global Muslim community and all of humanity,” said Hefner.