Indonesian people already have a profound tolerance capability. Although it is not perfect, the tolerance in the society is considered quite good compared to other countries. "This is proven by the existence of many islands, ports, and trading towns. In these areas, people are different and do not really know each other. As in Malacca and Aceh, they are actually an international city because of their trade, not an exclusive or fanatic city," says Prof. Dr. Franz Magnis Suseno in the workshop Managing Multiculturalism: Complexities and Contradictions on Tuesday (7/12). In his view, tolerance is not only seen as culture, but it is a belief that in religion there should be no coercion. In the interaction everyone is expected to respect each other.
Despite covering the complex issues; tolerance is connected with a sense of self-knowing and tolerant attitude. In view of the STF Driyakara lecturer, tolerance continues to experience challenges. The challenges; if not handled well would halt the tolerance itself. The challenges are, among other things, the very hard competition atmosphere, especially the economic conditions experienced by lower-income people because they are competing hard to be able to live and thrive. While on the other hand exclusive ideologies emerged.
"Togetherness is a solution. But it should not be only talked about. It should be practiced many times. Many forums can connect interfaith relations in Indonesia and that's what makes it all better than it used to, for example the relationship between Christians and Muslims are increasingly growing," he explained in Winotosastro Batik, Yogyakarta.
Therefore, the values of local wisdom, such as in customs and habits as well as ways of speaking, become a very important factor. Things like that should be used not only based on principles such as human rights, nevertheless local knowledge at the grassroots level must be understood. "Previously, in the four years I lived in Jogja, I was able to get a sense role, sense management, tolerance, and mutual respect. This kind of thing is what ultimately leads to tolerance. It was there once, but apparently currently it is not exposed. During Suharto’s tenure, it already existed, but actually the policy was contradictive," Magnis added.
With his experience as a clergyman, Frans Magnis Suseno assesses the relationship between Islam and Christianity in particular matters today are much better than in the past. In fact, the relationship is much closer than when he arrived in Indonesia 60 years ago. "Sixty years ago, a priest was not familiar with a kyai in an Islamic boarding school. Now, the relationship with NU and Muhammadiyah is much closer and it can ward off the negatives and give confidence despite the very complex problems," he explained.
Besides Frans Magnis Suseno, the workshop during the World Conference on Culture, Education, and Science presented other speakers, including Prof. Dr. Judith Schlehe (Germany), Dr. Mulyadi, M.Si. (UNIPA, Manokwari), Ali Abdel Moneim, B.S, Dip., M.Sc. (UII), Umar Hadi, Prof. Dr. Muchtar Ahmad (University of Riau), Prof. Santosa, Ph.D. (ISI Surakarta), Prof. Dr. Paul Morris (Director for Religious Studies at Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand), Prof. Dr. P.M. Laksono (UGM), Dr. Jean Couteau (France), Dr. Dwia Aries Tina Pulubuhu, M.A. (Universitas Hasanuddin, Makasar), and Dr. Rimbawan (IPB, Bogor).