“AIDS dalam Islam”: A Book Written by CRCS Alumnus

“AIDS dalam Islam” is a book written by Syamsu Madyan. He was a student at CRCS, batch 2004. In this book he acknowledges that AIDS is seen as a dreadful disease. It remains appalling until these days not only because a cure has not been found yet but also because it grows and spreads massively and uncontrollably. It victimizes not only the so-called sexual perverts but every element in our society: the young and the old, both the rich and the poor, male and female, and even innocent children.

AIDS has become a global concern or focus that besets humanity. The disease does not only have medical implication but it also regarded as a social and moral problem.

This phenomenon poses a great challenge to religions, particularly here in Indonesia and Islam. The question is how the religions play its significant role in addressing AIDS.

The role of Islam on the issue depends on how Muslims give meaning to what Islam is. For Puritan Muslims, AIDS is seen as God’s punishment to the homosexuals who spread it to others (their argument is that the punishment is not only given to the sinners but also to all people around them). Therefore, AIDS is approached and tried to be solved normatively (no free sex, no consumption of illegal drugs or narcotics, no immorality etc).

For progressive Muslims, AIDS is seen more as a social problem (injustice, social lameness, inequality of knowledge and information). AIDS here is approached and tried to be solved by nets of social, political-economical-cultural approaches where religions play an important role.

The book tries to put together the arguments of both sides. The puritan Muslim’s perspective represented by Dr. Malik Badri, an expert psychologist who is well-known in supporting idea of the Psychology of Islam, and the progressive Muslim’s point of view represented by Dr. Farid Esack who supports Islamic school based on Liberation Theology. Furthermore, the author presents the responses of Nahdatul Ulama (NU), Muhammadyah, and Majelis Ulama Indonesia (MUI) as representatives from the mainstream Islam in Indonesia [Source: Author’s Synopsis]

This post is also available in: Indonesian

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