We build the pesantren, thus people can become independent.
Jakarta (ANTARA) - Vice President Ma'ruf Amin has asked all parties to strengthen the implementation of Islamic boarding schools (pesantren) throughout Indonesia to encourage the people’s self-reliance, since pesantren, as educational institutions, can optimize the people’s capability.

Pesantren must also become a center for the empowerment of community’s economy. We build the pesantren, thus people can become independent,” he remarked while attending the 51st Haul (Death Anniversary) of Al Maghfurlah Al Alim Al'allamah Mama K.H. Tb. Muhammad Falak Abbas.

The event was held at the Al Falak Islamic Boarding School in Bogor City, West Java Province, on Saturday evening.

The vice president said that the potentials of Muslims would increase if the function of Islamic boarding schools was bolstered.

There are two attempts which can be applied to strengthen the role of the Islamic boarding schools, namely empowering the students (santri) as well as training the surrounding community who are not the students of the pesantren, he said.

Furthermore, he has emphasized that empowering the people to advance the country is one of worship activities.

Amin stated that many former Islamic scholars, including Imam Ghozali, had taught about maqashid sharia -- or the aims of sharia – which consisted of protecting (hifdzul) the religion (din), oneself (nafs), one's mind (‘aql), one's offspring (nasl), and wealth (mal).

He continued that the mutaakhirin (later hadith scholars) then agreed that protecting the motherland (hifdzul wathan) is also part of the maqashid sharia.

"In the past, we guarded the homeland by fighting the invaders. Currently, what the santri should do is developing the country by building the economy," he added.

Prior, the vice president said that according to the Pesantren Law, the Islamic boarding schools have three main functions, namely as the centre of education, proselytizing, and community economic empowerment.

Hence, to support the educational institutions in realizing the mandate of the law, the Cooperatives and Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) had launched the Pesantren Cooperatives (Kopontren) program.

Related news: Santris should contribute to national development: VP Amin
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Translator: Rangga Jingga, Uyu Liman
Editor: Rahmad Nasution
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