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Shattariyah in Minangkabau: A Newly Published Book

Oman Fathurahman, Tarekat Syattariyah di Minangkabau: Teks dan Konteks, Jakarta: EFEO and Prenada Media Group, in collaboration with PPIM UIN Jakarta, KITLV Jakarta, and Total Indonésie.

Finally, the book originated from my doctoral thesis at the University of Indonesia (UI) Depok (2003) comes to the readers, thanks to Prof. Henri Chambert-Loir of EFEO Jakarta, who has supported me to publish this book and invited other institutions, viz KITLV Jakarta, PPIM UIN Syarif Hidayatullah Jakarta, Total Indonésie, and the Publisher Prenada Media Group, to join for publication.

I have titled this book as "Tarekat Syattariyah di Minangkabau: Teks dan Konteks" (Shattariyah Order in Minangkabau: Text and Context).

Compared to the initial form of thesis, I have made a significant revision, and the important one is by including the more expanded sources of Shattariyyah manuscripts, not only those from Minangkabau West Sumatra, but also from West Java (Kuningan and Cirebon) and Giriloyo Jogjakarta. This revision has been completed, especially when I was a research fellow of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, Germany (August 2006-April 2008), at Malaiologischer Apparat am Orientalischen Seminar, Universität zu Köln, under supervision of Prof. Dr. Edwin Wieringa.

I sincerely want to present this book to my parents, H. M. Harun BA, and the late Ny Hj. Sukesih, who have cultivated the most important basic principles of education since my young age, and my beloved family, who always accompany me at any time with their love: my wife, Ida, my children: Fadli Husnurrahman (1997), Alif Alfaini Rahman (2000), and Jiddane Ashkura Rahman (2004). All your love has been manifested within this book, and my love will be with you all forever.

Below is the abstract of the book, and you can find my acknowledgment for those I am indebted to, here.

THIS BOOK focuses on efforts to reveal meaning in religious manuscripts, in this case the manuscripts about Shattariyyah order that emerged in West Sumatra. Ten Shattariyyah manuscripts, written by three Shattariyyah ulama in Minangkabau —Imam Maulana Abdul Manaf Amin, H. K. Deram, and Tuanku Bagindo Abbas Ulakan— were primary sources for the discussion.

Besides, in order to measure the dynamics of the teachings of Shattariyyah order in West Sumatra, two Arabic sources related to Shattariyyah, which are considered to be reference sources for teaching Shattariyyah order in the Malay-Indonesian Islamic world, were consulted. The first is al-Simt al-Majid by Shaikh Ahmad al-Qushashi, and the second is Ithaf al-Dhaki bi Sharh al-Tuhfah al-Mursalah Ila Ruh al-Nabi by Ibrahim al-Kurani. As a result of an analysis of these two manuscripts, we know that the Shattariyyah manuscripts in West Sumatra were an important intellectual link between the writers, starting with Ahmad al-Qushashi, Ibrahim al-Kurani, Abdurrauf bin Ali al-Jawi al-Fansuri, and reaching the writers in West Sumatra by way of Burhanuddin Ulakan, an eminent student of Abdurrauf.

As can be seen from the manuscripts, the teachings of Shattariyyah order in West Sumatra generally carried on the traditions that had been previously formulated by the prominent figures of Shattariyyah in H{aramayn, represented by al-Qushashi, and also by the Shattariyyah ulama in Aceh, especially Abdurrauf. These teachings are mainly related to the practices of dhikr (religious recitation), behaviour and good manners in dhikr, and the formulation of dhikr.

However, there are noticeable differences, particularly in relation to the concepts of haqiqat (religious truth) and the ultimate objectives of dhikr in Shattariyyah order. In Shattariyyah in West Sumatra, the formulation of these concepts was more moderate than in the earlier teachings of al-Qushashi and Abdurrauf. The Shattariyyah manuscripts of al-Qushashi and Abdurrauf discuss the concept of fana —the negation of self or the loss of individual limitations, and becoming one with Allah, fana ‘an al-fana or fana ‘an fanaih, that is fana from fana itself— as religious truth and the ultimate objective of dhikr. The Shattariyyah manuscripts of West Sumatra explain that religious truth and dhikr are “sufficient” to cleanse the soul, which allows nearness with God, and to produce the feelings that allow for certainty and evidence of religious truth and His Being (Wujud).

This inclination towards moderation is even clearer in the formulation of mystico-philosophy doctrine. As is evident in the manuscripts written by al-Kurani and Abdurrauf, they were still teaching the wahdat al-wujud doctrine, though it was adapted to theories of orthodox Islam, and thus this doctrine —which met with strong opposition from the orthodox ulama— was more widely accepted. In the Shattariyyah manuscripts of West Sumatra, the teachings of wahdat al-wujud were not just more flexible, they were in fact removed from all the teachings of Shattariyyah order, as they were considered to be in conflict with the teachings of ahlussunnah wal jama’ah, and a deviation from the practices of shari’at.

As a result, particularly since the 19th century, the teaching of Shattariyyah order in West Sumatra without the wahdat al-wujud doctrine is just one of this order’s unique characteristics and tendencies. This is relatively different from those in other areas as represented by the Sundanese and Javanese manuscripts from Kuningan, Cirebon, and Giriloyo.

After having contact with several local traditions and cultures, the teaching style of Shattariyyah order was laden with local nuances. Teachings about the relationship between the external body and the internal self, for example, were formulated in what was known as “pengajian tubuh” (teachings of body). Shattariyyah teachings, apart from via conventional methods such as the recitation of al-Qur’an, were also delivered through traditions that included local characteristics, such as salawat dulang. Followers of Shattariyyah order in West Sumatra also developed what is known as “Basapa”, a Shattariyyah order ritual in Ulakan each Safar month (2nd month of the Arabic calendar), a tradition that was strongly influenced by local culture.

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1 Kommentare:

Dorej said...

Dear brother:

Congratulations for your work!
An advice: you should seek an editor (specializing in Islamic subjects, example RoutledgeCurzon at London, or fons vitae for publication in English. There is almost no work about Shattariyya, and certainly your book would have many readers.
Martin (Argentina)