Indonesia is home to the largest Muslim community in the world. Much of the media attention given to manifestations of radical Islam in Indonesia after 9/11 and the Bali bombings of October 2002 have been limited to current affairs. This book provides a broader perspective about contemporary Islam in Indonesia through discussing two outstanding streams of thought and movements - Islamic modernism and radical Islamic fundamentalism. These two multifaceted phenomena clearly illustrate the significant contemporary influence of the Middle East on the Indonesia archipelago, in an Islamic context. Thus the focus is twofold: the local context, and the impact of the Middle East on Islam in Indonesia. These two perspectives allow a comparative and cross-regional view which, combined with the broader historical narrative, provides insights into possible future trends.
The author explains the importance of the reformist motivation; religious and social & political dimensions; ideology, perceptions, and interaction in the context of the transmission and dissemination of Islamic ideas; and the current and potential appeal of the war cry of Jihad in opposition to the unique bulwarks against it as suggested by the local Indonesian context. These topics make this book essential reading to understanding the current and future comprehensive challenges posed by radical Islam in the Indonesian archipelago.