June 13, 2022
by Dr. Munawar Ahmad, SS, M.Sc.
Last week, a video of a motorbike convoy with the Khilafah attribute went viral on social media. One of the videos was uploaded by the Twitter account @Miduk17. Then the Polda Metro Jaya succeeded in arresting the leader of the Khilafatul Muslimin, Abdul Qadir Baraja in Lampung. Currently, he is on his way to Jakarta.
There is one interesting thing about the “caliphate” phenomenon, since the ban on HTI in 2017, namely the profanization of the caliphate in Indonesia. The argument for the disbandment of HTI refers to the Government Regulation in Lieu of Law (Perpu) for Ormas Number 2 of 2017, article 59 paragraph 4 letter c of the Perppu Ormas, because HTI is “considered” proven that the understanding championed by the plaintiff is contrary to Pancasila.
This paper wants to unravel the regime of prophonization, namely the degradation of meaning by a set of knowledge powers. The word profane , comes from the Latin profanare, from profanus which means “unholy and not consecrated”. Thus , the profanization of the caliphate in this paper is aimed at the process of desecrating the caliphate which was previously considered “sacred/sacred” because its position is stored in the holy book.
The terms sacred and profane are terms related to religious beliefs and rituals. However, there are those who divide the two terms into different fields, sacred related to ritual, while profane is included in the cultural category. Both theoretically and conceptually can be distinguished, but in practice and in reality it cannot be separated between the sacred and the profane, between religion and culture.
Symptoms of profanization/secularization and sacralization/spiritualization of public spaces are indeed complex issues that cannot be answered instantly. Many factors make this problem complicated, among others, determined by the social structure of society, cultural features, political situation to the character of the religious doctrine itself to the working knowledge regime.
Now with the arrest of supporters of the sacred caliphate, it implies a rough tug of war between the two camps. It is undeniable that in Indonesia there has been a movement to reject the caliphate, at least it can be traced from the circulation of the work of Ali Abd Raziq, an Egyptian cleric who agreed with the abolition of the caliphate.
Through his book, Al-Islam wa Usul al-Hukmi. This idea was reproduced in Indonesia to reject the caliphate movement. As for the arguments of this group, namely: First , the Qur’an and hadith do not regulate the system; Second , Islam does not recognize such an institution ( khilafah ), or – at least – does not prohibit or instruct it. All of that is left to humans to consider.
Meanwhile, the camp that believes that the caliphate absolutely must exist, namely Syihab al-Din Ahmad Ibn Abi Rabi’ who lived in Baghdad during the reign of Mu’tashim in the IX century AD. Then followed thinkers such as al-Farabi, al-Mawardi, al-Ghazali, Ibn Taimiyah and Ibn Khaldun, Rashid Rida, including Taqiyuddin an-Nabhani.
The two opinions that are profanic and sacred cannot be combined because each has a strong argument and has a devotee. Even the caliphate is not just a political language, but has been considered to be the language of absolutes, namely ideological, chalipological , khilafah as an ideology of power as well as a formalistic method.
Based on the hadith of the Prophet Muhammad SAW, there are those who believe that the caliphate will and absolutely be reborn. Like the sentence khilafah ‘ala minhajin nubuwwah (caliphate that follows the path of prophethood) in a hadith narrated by Imam Ahmad. (Where the status of the hadith is still debated. Some say it is authentic, hasan , and daif (weak). However, in politics, the hadith has awakened the imagination about the caliph)
The following is the translation of the hadith in question, “It is a time of prophethood among all of you, by the will of Allah, then Allah raises it when He wills to raise it. Then is the time of the caliphate which follows the path of prophethood ( khilafah ‘ala minhajin nubuwwah ) by the will of Allah. Then Allah raises him (stops him) when he wills to raise him. Then is the era of the kingdom that bites ( Mulkan Adhdhon ) by the will of Allah. Then Allah lifts him up when He wills to lift him up. Then is the period of the arrogant kingdom ( Mulkan Jabariyah )) exists by the will of Allah. Then Allah raises him when He wills to raise him. Then is the time of the caliphate which follows the path of prophethood ( khilafah ‘ala Minhaj nubuwwah ). Then he (the Prophet) was silent.” (HR Imam Ahmad)
These hadiths in politics have strongly inspired, the absolute form of the caliphate in the real world, even closer in the country they live in. The idea of a caliphate state as a state that is complete and with optimum benefit has become the image of the supporters of the caliphate. The illusion of an Islamic state, as mentioned in the hadith, is referred to by Gus Dur (2009) as an enemy in a blanket. In Gus Dur’s episteme , formalism in the form of an Islamic State or Khilafah Islamiyah is not a discourse born of local wisdom or the struggle of the Indonesian nation itself, so it does not need to be applied here.
Let’s look at the hadith narratives about historical philosophy related to the caliphate in its archeology, linkingly explain the dialectization of knowledge with the growth of power. Starting from knowledge in the charism of prophethood, dialectics with the power of the tabiin, after the charisma of prophethood is lost, but its charisma is still working, then the caliphate changes to the caliphate period which follows the path of prophethood ( khilafah ‘ala minhajin nubuwwah ).
Along with the erosion of prophetic charism, power lost its prophetic light, became a biting form of kingdom ( Mulkan Adhdhon ), until its peak, power had damaged both charisma and prophetic knowledge, namely the era of arrogant kingdoms ( Mulkan Jabariyah ). In such circumstances, the antithesis of Mulkan Jabariyah will be rebuilt , namely the caliphate which follows the path of prophethood ( khilafah a’la Minhajin nubuwah ) again. That is the linear-continuous archeology of the caliphate which implies that the caliphate in the style of Minhajin Nubuwuah is the turning point of the cyclical knowledge of the caliphate.
The rhythmic flow explains that the caliph a la Minhajin nubuwwah is formed through absolute intrinsic conditions, namely the existence of prophetic claims. This requirement is rejected by many adherents of the theology of khataman nabiyiin , except for Ahmadiyya, who have a theology of prophetic openness ( maftuhan nabiyiin ).
That’s why the caliphate, apart from the Ahmadiyya Khilafah, is currently only political knowledge, the pursuit of power, as well as the formality of Islamic power, with the target of the formality of Islam being a state. This is what distinguishes the caliphate of Minhajin Nubuwwah from the Jabariyah caliphate .
So, there are actually two types of caliphate, namely the khilafah ala Minhajin nubuwah and the khilafah Jabariyah / daulah . Khilafah ala minhajin nubuwah , oriented to upholding the values and morals of monotheism, which do not conflict with the existing daula /states, providing synergy for goodness and benefit as well as upholding the universal divinity. However, this Movement is not a Sufism Movement, which is oriented to ritual-privacy discipline.
Meanwhile , the Jabariyah caliphate is oriented towards upholding Islamic values in the formal realm of the state, always being the antithesis of state morals, and it is even more likely to become an energy of rebellion.
The first type of caliphate is promoted by the Ahmadiyya Community, which bases its pattern of struggle based on the hadith mentioned above, so that Ahmadiyya followers in every country will always be supportive of the country in which they are located. There is no ethic of rebellion against the state even though collectively, this group is being persecuted. They try to be good citizens as a form of embodiment of the values of the khilafah ala Minhajj nubuwah .
In the context of the sociology of knowledge, the Qur’an is a book that contains the basic principles of life. So do not be surprised if the Quran also explains the principle of managing political power, siyasa wa jinayah . Several terms are related to the ideation of political power, such as khalīfah , sul ān , imāmat , and uli al-amr . Many commentators have explained the meaning and application of the term related to power, both pros and cons. But in essence they agree that the management of power is a matter of urgency , it absolutely exists, in order to avoid chaos .
All require all forms of government ( caliphate , and non-khilafah ) as actors of political power, to carry out development that is oriented towards justice and or oriented to the public benefit. So “development carried out by the government must refer to and be oriented to the public benefit (al-Taṣarruf al-Imām ‘alā al-Ra’iyyat manū thun bi al-Maṣlahat).
From the entire description above, profanization is an act of knowledge politics carried out by a group of knowledge powers degrading sacred messages into political ideologies. Thus, the term khilafah for supporters of the jabariyah caliphate / daulah is very functional for the formalization of Islam in the state, as conquest as well as the highest form of achieving the mission of da’wah. For this reason, it is certain that there will be engineering of intrinsic values into instrumental values by the machine of political interest.
The arguments about the caliphate, although their validity is denied, for the supporters of the caliphate become what Weber calls value-rational . A meaningful-subjective basis for performing meaningful, useful, or beneficial actions.
Although, the argument is accused of being ahistorical, counter-human, and even insane. The more they are sued and insulted, the more their rational values become stronger. These supporters may die and be abused, but the value action will be reproduced in history, as the antithesis of state power.
At that point, the state was present as the antithesis of the Jabariyah Khilafah . The state will look with eyes of fear at the rise of treason, the aggression behind the workings of the caliph’s sentiments, to the point of phobia, chaliphobia ,
As for the bad side of chaliphobia , it will actually generalize for supporters of the caliphate who are truly oriented towards religious moral movements, who are supportive of state sovereignty, being suspected of being a potential group against the state.
With the arrest, it seems that the symptoms of the profanization of the caliphate are really happening. Both are carried out by the authorities and supporters of the Jabariyah caliphate / Daullah. both sides, have their supporters and propagandists. But nothing weakens, other than just rudeness.
At this point, a critical attitude is needed, as well as social resilience in responding to heated debates, both discourse and praxis. Especially aware of the absolute presence of knowledge about the importance of living with mutual respect for identity and self-esteem in the positive dynamics and goodness of life. (****)
Dr. Munawar Ahmad, SS, M.Sc. is a lecturer in Political Science at the Study Program of Religions, Sunan Kalijaga State Islamic University, Yogyakarta.