MUHAMMADIYAH.OR.ID, YOGYAKARTA—Muhammadiyah has been actively taking roles in coping with global issues. For instance, Muhammadiyah contributed to conflict resolution in the Philippines, established educational institutions in Australia and Malaysia, founded Muhammadiyah special branches in five continents, and promoted Tapak Suci (a martial art) as a medium of da’wah in Egypt and Germany.
According to President of Muhammadiyah Haedar Nashir, Muhammadiyah’s global contributions has been performed by Kiai Dahlan when he dwelt in Mecca and met Islamic figures from many countries. During his stay in Mecca, he also read books written by Muhammad Abdul such as Risalat al-Tawhid, Al Islam wa al-Nashraniyyah, and al-Urwah al-Wutsqa.
“Kiai Dahlan didn’t study in the West, but he could meet a lot of Islamic figures and learn thoughts of Muhamamd Abduh and Jammaluddin al-Afghani. His experiences of living in Mecca twice underlay international relations of Muhammadiyah,” stated Haedar on Sunday (20/6).
From Muhamamd Abduh and Jamaluddin al-Afghani, Kiai Dahlan found answers to issues of Indonesian Muslims. Haedar told that the two Islamic figures inspired Kiai Dahlan to build relations with various figures.
“The two thinkers and reformers in the Islamic world (Abduh and al-Afghani) led Islam to play roles in international relations with the Islamic world and the West,” explained Haedar, who’s also the professor at Universitas Muhammadiyah Yogyakarta.
Both figures stayed in Paris for several years, and during their stay their writings were published on al-Urwah al-Wutsqa for 18 editions. Through the magazine, Kiai Dahlan understood thoughts of Western modernism which later was integrated with Islamic insights.
“One day after establishing Muhammadiyah, Kiai Dahlan didn’t stutter when dealing with relations among global figures and understanding. He adapted international scouting to be Hizbul Wathan, and initiated the first women’s movement,” told Haedar.
His broad horizons led Kiai Dahlan to be open-minded. Due to his expertise, Kiai Dahlan together with other Muhammadiyah figures assigned a team to manage hajj in Mecca and Medina. Besides, there have been a lot of involvement of Muhammadiyah in international levels.