Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Family: Unity in Diversity

Hi, readers!

If you are reader come from Indonesia, you might be familiar enough with this slogan "Bhinneka Tunggal Ika". Yep, that's such like national slogan to build nationalist spirit among diversity of race, culture, language, region, etc, that exist in Indonesia. "Bhinneka Tunggal Ika" slogan has been used since the first president of Indonesia, Mr. Soekarno, still serving and has been discussed since before proclamation of Indonesia independence day.

"Bhinneka Tunggal Ika" can be found in Holy Book Sutasoma that written by Mpu Tantular in fourteenth century at the era of Majapahit Kingdom. That masterpiece are given new interpretation by the founding fathers in accordance with strategic needs of Indonesia independent building which consist of diversity: religion, belief, ethnicity, political ideology, culture and language. Thence, that masterpiece has adopted in context unitary state of Indonesia.
"Bhinneka Tunggal Ika is a magic one of great significance and it embraces the sincere hope the whole nation in its struggle up to become great, unites in the frame works of an Indonesian community Pancasilaist"
-- Dr. Soewito Santosa in his book Sutasoma, A Study in Javanese Wajrayana, 1975
The founding fathers agreed to use "Bhinneka Tunggal Ika" as national slogan which means "unity in diversity". 
In our daily life nowadays, there are too many disintegration among groups or ethnics due to difference. Talk about disintegration, difference occur only if there is personal/group/ethnic feel conflicted with another person/group/ethnic, it is natural. The difference makes us think that we need some another viewpoints to find a better solution.

If you are asking me, what is the concrete example of "Bhinneka Tunggal Ika"? My answer is family. Yes, my family. My family is a concrete example due to implementation of unity in diversity. We are created with different family background. As an explanation, here you can look our Family ID Card or as known as Kartu Keluarga/KK.

There are 3 coloums (read from left side): the first coloum shows our biological mother name. And the third coloum shows our biological father name. Look the different name of biological mother and father of my family there. The first line is belong to mom. Then 8 lines below is belong to us, the children. The sixth line belong to me. It can be seen how complex the difference in my family tree. What are shown in my Family ID Card is only limited to biological parent 'name'. The rest, my family also has difference in ethnic background. For example, my ethnic background is mixed by Netherland and Java. While my old sister ethnic background is mixed by Chinnese and Java. The other one, Rahma ethnic background is mixed by Ambon, Middle east, and Java. Yet, religion background factor too. Okay, can you imagine how complex is it?

I've ever read  in some sites, there people argued about "Bhinneka Tunggal Ika" meaning which only intended for indigenous people in Indonesian archipelago. Some people there argued that Chinese ethnic and another ethnic who are migrant from foreign race, it is not included in "Bhinneka Tunggal Ika" meaning. I was wonder by all thought by the type of people like them, why they proud to use "history" as a form of social provocation? It might because they never face diversity around them, actually. I have no idea. But one thing for sure, whether they--those on behalf of 'history'--can provide guarantee that their nationalism is better than migrant race? Can they provide guarantee that they are more able to contribute the best achievement than migrant race? I really want to say this to that people: If you have not been able to give best achievements for this country yet, you should keep your argument first

if they assume that all migrant race are NOT included in "Bhinneka Tunggal Ika" meaning, whether my grandpa was also NOT a part of Indonesia? In fact, my grandpa was a Dutch who chose to stay and settle in Indonesia since he was child. He also loved Indonesia, just like I love Indonesia. Even when he compared to that people, maybe my grandpa had lot more knowledge about Java cultural and traditional values. Is it just because my grandfather was born a Dutch descent, then he is not a part of Indonesia? Funny.

People are created with its difference. The true is, nobody disadvantaged by the difference, there are only an advantage to be learned--only if we want to contemplate it. In my opinion, there are wrong intepretation about unity concept. Many assume tells that if all these difference are united, then harmony will appear. For me, such thing like difference, would not be able to united. Its name is just difference. All efforts to unify the difference which ultimately lead to friction, then it lead to conflict. You know, life would not be wonderful if humans are only able to see one color. If we only focus on the difference among us, that's caused contention. There is nothing wrong in diversity, the only matter is our selfishness in looking at diversity.

From my family, I've learn how to love each other and how to handle our selfishness in diversity. Small diversity. A-very-small compared with diversity in a nation, even in a big place that-so-called-world. Perhaps, you could say that my family is a multicultural family. I think diversity in my family is wonderful. No need to make all difference to be in one uniform/same. The most important is alignment, so it will appears harmony in diversity.

If GOD did not make diversity, then we would never learn anything :)


-Bening Rahardjo-