Interview – From Miftahul Jannah Akbar, Muslim patriotic students born

Dr. Patrialis Akbar (left), the founder and supervisor of an Indonesian Quran memorization boarding school, Miftahul Jannah Akbar (MJA), in an exclusive interview with Indonesia Window in Cisarua sub district, Bogor district, West Java province, Monday (June 10, 2024). (Indonesia Window/Ronald Rangkayo)

By studying Islam in accordance with the Quran and the Sunnah of the Prophet ﷺ, a generation of civilized Muslims is expected to be born in the hope they would also able to become leaders at all levels of life, from the household, community to nation and state.

 

Bogor, W Java (Indonesia Window) – Even though it is eroding gradually, the stigma, that Islamic boarding schools are linked to the assumption of the word ‘terrorist and terrorism’, still lingers in the minds of certain persons.

In fact, Islamic boarding schools are places to learn the noble teachings of Islam, the goodness and benefits of which bring grace to the entire universe (rahmatan lil’alamin).

By studying Islam in accordance with the Quran and the Sunnah of the Prophet ﷺ, a generation of civilized Muslims is expected to be born and also able to become leaders at all levels of life, from the household, community to nation and state.

In an exclusive interview with Indonesia Window recently, Dr. Patrialis Akbar, who is the founder and supervisor of an Indonesian Quran memorization boarding school, Miftahul Jannah Akbar (MJA) which is located in Cisarua sub district, Bogor district, West Java province, explained the vision and mission of this educational institution, which also pays special attention to the formation of leadership characters who love the country.

“The target of Miftahul Jannah Akbar is of course to make the students memorize the Quran. However, it’s not just that, because we have a vision that they will also become leaders in this Republic,” he said.

He added that the opportunity to become a leader in Indonesia is very big. “Therefore, at this boarding school we also teach our children to love their homeland and obey their legitimate leaders”.

“It’s time for them (the students) to lead, so they have to be leaders who love their nation. That’s why one of the principles of our motto is ‘Nationality in my spirit’,” said Dr. Patrialis who served as Minister of Law and Human Rights of the Republic of Indonesia during the period 2009-2011.

The motto of Miftahul Jannah Akbar consists of four principles, namely, ‘Al-Quran in my heart; Science in my mind; Strength in my body; and Nationality in my spirit’.

With this basic motto, he continued, future leaders born from MJA are expected to become ‘Quranic leaders’. “When they lead in society, God willing, they would be successful in building the nation and creating prosperity, and would be able to strengthen relations among ethnic groups and among religious communities in this country”.

“This is a great leader,” he stressed, while quoting a verse of the Quran from Surah Al Hujurat, verse 13, which is translated: ‘O humanity! Indeed, we created you from a male and a female, and made you into nations and tribes so that you may ˹get to˺ know one another. Surely the most noble of you in the sight of Allah is the most righteous among you. Allah is truly All-Knowing, All-Aware.’

“This is the specific advantage of MJA that we offer to people. We hope that when they graduate from here, our students are expected to have memorized 30 chapters of the Quran with steady and strong memorization. They will be deployed throughout Indonesia to become mudir (leaders) everywhere. God willing, those who memorize the Quran would also have good morals,” Dr. Patrialis said.

Regarding the negative stigma that is still attached to Islamic boarding schools and their students, he emphasized, “Here (Miftahul Jannah Akbar) we completely guarantee that this is an ‘anti-terror’ boarding school. Here we teach our children that terrorism is a haram (strongly forbidden in Islam) act, even we teach that demonstrations (rallies) against the government are not allowed because demonstrations damage the government’s image, and these actions will definitely disturb other people.”

He emphasized that the Quran memorization boarding school of Miftahul Jannah Akbar teaches students to love their country and state, and disgust terrorists and terrorism because both are destructive and damaging.

Therefore, he hoped that the government would appreciate and support all the efforts made by Miftahul Jannah Akbar and other Islamic boarding schools in the country in educating and developing Indonesian young people to be future leaders with high intelligence, decent characters, and faith their nation and country.

Reporting by Indonesia Window

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