A Reflection of A Century of ‘Aisyiyah

'Aisyiyah Mencerahkan Semesta
'Aisyiyah Mencerahkan Semesta

‘Aisyiyah Mencerahkan Semesta (foto: spacenews.com)

By: Masyitoh

One hundred years of ‘Aisyiyah is on the doorway, its steps is more certain day by day. Various charitable efforts and in various fields are set up for the welfare of society.

The journey of ‘Aisyiyah for nearly a century has been passed by the full dynamics. Bitterness, sweetness and happiness have brought ‘Aisyiyah to be tougher and stronger. Many things can already be carved unconditionally and without the bustle of the media, although on the one hand it is a weakness, but ‘Aisyiyah is still known and exists.

The lunge of ‘Aisyiyah and anything it has done are in line with the livelihood of the society, and not less important, it is based on the principles of the ideology of the movement, as the ideology of Muhammadiyah movement. The ideology of Muhammadiyah movement is always united in faith, understanding, ideals and attitudes of the leaders and activators to tirelessly fertilize the Islamic movement.

Together with the other components of the nation, ‘Aisyiyah continues to fight for the Indonesian people to be a nation that is more advanced, dignified and sovereign equal with other nations. The dynamics of stuggle are experienced by ‘Aisyiyah throughout the course of its history. In its struggle ‘Aisyiyah is faced with various challenges and issues, both humanitarian issues such as poverty and problems of its people and nationality. These issues require serious attention and it never give up. Fighting for the problems of its people and for humanitarian is a call of jihad for ‘Aisyiyah.

Organization of ‘Aisyiyah established in 1335 or 1917 H is a media for gathering, and discussing to formulate a work program for the benefit of humanity, people and nationality. It is an important and strategic position in the lives of Indonesian women in particular, and Moslems in general, as the important and strategic position of Muhammadiyah organization for Indonesia.

‘Aisyiyah realizes its presence is needed by the people. Hence, many efforts have been performed. The spirit of da’wah rises an attention to early education, by establishing Frobel School (1919). Motivated by the spirit of worship and da’wah, then ‘Aisyiyah established a little mosque (musala) for women (1922), which is the only mosque for women in Indonesia at that time, which serves as a central of the ‘Aisyiyah activities.

From the mosque, the idea of iliteracy eradiction (Latin, Arabic) was born, which in turn (after literacy) can be useful to explore the useful sciences, this step is clearly the role of enlightening people. Based on the awareness of the importance da’wah and communication efficiency to quckly get to the grass roots/community, then Suara ‘Aisyiyah was born (1926), which now it has already crossed the age of the age (the colonial era, the time of independence and post-independence era up to now).

In the course of its history, ‘Aisyiyah performs as a mass organization in line with its parent organization, Muhammadiyah. Now its gait and tireless struggle have gained the recognition and trust from the government and the wide society.

Understanding the characteristics and the particularity of ‘Aisyiyah movement, it is important to examine the strengths, weakness, opportunities and threats it faces when entering century. in the development of ‘Aisyiyah today, it can be described the objective conditions it faces including the strengths, weakness, opportunities, and challanges/threats as follows: The Strength of ‘Aisyiyah.

As an organization, the power of ‘Aisyiyah lies in: (a) the foundation of Islam based on al-Quran and as-Sunnah accompanied by the value of sincerity motivated to solely worship to Allah, is very significant power of ‘Aisyiyah to make this movement gain widespread belief from the Moslems in particular and the Indonesian in general; (b) the widespread organization net throughout the whole country and Indonesia and some countries facilitates ‘Aisyiyah to give reinforcement in order to develop activities at the grass roots level that needs assistance and coordination so that the program can run well; (c) reputation of ‘Aisyiyah as women’s organization and religious organization in Indonesia has been widely known so it facilitates ‘Aisyiyah to get supports in organizing activities locally, nationally, and internationally and in developing cooperative programs with international institutions; (d) charitable efforts that develop very significantly become the very important resource asset for ‘Aisyiyah in maintaining the self-existence of various situations and conditions; (e) as a women –led organization, its movement and pace are quite optimistic because its human resources are relatively diligent, because most of the leaders are very very focused on the mandated responsibility, because they are free from the bonded works; (f) ‘Aisyiyah as a force of social –religious organization, and the women organization that has served in quite a long time since this country has not been born, has made this organization movement have social, spiritual, and moral capital as a strength for the life of the nation.

The Opportunities of ‘Aisyiyah

‘Aisyiyah in its movement has a number of important opportunities, among others; (a) the area of regional autonomy, which provides flexibility to local governments to set up their own household, becomes an opportunity for ‘Aisyiyah in these regions to be more involved in public decision-making and regional development, so that the existence of and the role of women’s organizations is more pervasive in the lives of Indonesian people; (b) the progress of thinking and openness of Indonesian society and more democratic conditions are beneficial for ‘Aisyiyah which work has been recognized in this country so it can continue to develop its movement in various areas of life; (c) ‘Aisyiyah as one of the pillars of civil society in Indonesia, gets vast opportunities for cooperation with international institutions, so it can encourage the gait of this organization in various fields, especially in improving the quality of charitable efforts and activities of the organization; (d) the educational background of ‘Aisyiyah human resources increasingly showing the encouraging competence and qualifications gives an opportunity for this organization to perform more and more and to improve the quality of the organization in various levels.

The Challenge/Threat of ‘Aisyiyah

As for challenges or threats that lie ahead for ‘Aisyiyah are; (a) the situation and circumstances that indicate the presence of violence in the socio-political movements and religious conflicts are the challenge for ‘Aisyiyah in bringing da’wah movement mission that is the Islamic mission rahmatan lil ‘alamin; (b) the development of charitable efforts of that most of them tend to be profit-oriented and move away from the ideology of al-Maun becomes a threat for ‘Aisyiyah.

From the analysis and formulation of the strengths, weakness, opportunities, and challenges and threats it faces, then at least ‘Aisyiyah must make strategic policies, especially in ending the first century and coming into the second century. ‘Aisyiyah at least should be more focus in particular to the education of the nation generation started from an early age, because hence the origin of the problem, the impact that will be received later, whether happy or sad, because the way to educate that is in right or wrong way, then the consequence will be picked. Moreover the time being is a very worrying time for the life of the nation’s generation. In this global era, the demands of qualified education becomes a necessity, qualified in science and also in character, smart intellectually, emotionally intelligent and spiritually intelligent. This is called in the language of Sufism as an Insan Kamil.

Now the need for education in all fields and through various channels is very strategic to address the more complex challenges of the time.

Meanwhile, it is equally realized that education is a fundamental necessity in human life. Between life and education can not be separated, the two are related to each other. “Life is education and education is life” (Proopert Lodge). Lodge’s statement suggests that between education and life are almost indistinguishable. Both (education and life) have been integrated in a philosophical framework, that the process of education is nothing but the process for the man in sailing the oceans of life, and vice versa.

Philosophical meaning of education is the process of how people identify themselves with all its potential and understand what is encountered in the real life reality. This is the fundamental problem of philosophy of education that is less widely understood by our education experts and practitioners (Suyanto, 2006: ix). Without education, it is impossible that newborn child who is still blind to the new world will become a world expert modifier, and without qualified education and character, it is impossible that the intelligent, fair, and trustworthy next generation will be born.

Souce: SA Magazine (Special Edition) May 2014

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