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Democracy and Islam in Indonesia$
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Alfred Stepan and Mirjam Künkler

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780231161916

Published to Columbia Scholarship Online: November 2015

DOI: 10.7312/columbia/9780231161916.001.0001

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Christian and Muslim Minorities in Indonesia

Christian and Muslim Minorities in Indonesia

State Policies and Majority Islamic Organizations

(p.73) 4 Christian and Muslim Minorities in Indonesia
Democracy and Islam in Indonesia

Franz Magnis-Suseno

Columbia University Press

This chapter asserts that state policies are the most important factor in ensuring religious tolerance in Indonesia. Tolerance, which has deep roots in traditional Indonesian cultures, will prevail as long as the state enforces corresponding legislation and the Constitution. This tolerance is illustrated quite well in the relations enjoyed by Muslims and Christians in Indonesia, though these relations are not without their toleration breakdowns. Another issue of note is the Muslim-majority intolerance toward Muslim minorities, as this intolerance remains the major religion-related problem in Indonesia's emerging democracy. Finally, in conjunction with the vital role of state legislature in ensuring tolerance within the population, it is imperative that the democratic government take action whenever such issues arise, as inaction will prove more detrimental to the quality of democracy in Indonesia than the actions of authoritarian and violent religious groups.

Keywords:   state policies, legislation, Constitution, Muslim minorities, tolerance, intolerance, democracy, democratic government

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