Sabtu , 21 January 2012, 16:57 WIB

Aphin: Mualaf is not a title

Rep: Devi Anggraini/ Red: Yeyen Rostiyani
hiwtc.com
An Islamic calligrapgy says
An Islamic calligrapgy says

REPUBLIKA.CO.ID, Being a convert was not the end goal for Aphin, yet it was the true beginning of his new journey. His passions and thirst of knowledge mounted, studying Islamic teaching in a boarding school was the next thing in his mind. Alas, his parents asked him to finish his senior high school instead. 

His graduation then led him to the next decision: went to Java to learn more about Islam. He arrived at Pesantren Darul Huda, a boarding school in Ciamis, West Java. It was not an easy start indeed when the school refused him an entry. 

“The boarding school was a bit traumatized of an experience when they accepted a troubled-Chinese-descendant student before,” Aphin said.

Surrender was a foreign word for Aphin, as he tried hard to convince the school principal of his passion on studying Islam.

“I worked as a garbage collector in the dormitories,” he continued his story.      

His efforts were worth of the prize: he was allowed to enroll then study for one semester. Then he moved to Pesantren Ihyaus Sunnah in Tasikmalaya, also in West Java and studied for two years. Once again, his thirst of knowledge led him to join An Naba Center -a boarding school specialized in helping new convert to understand Islam.    

He studied Islam seriously and joined a tahfiz class –a Quran’s reciting and memorizing class.

“I was allowed to come whenever I wanted and I was so grateful,” Aphin explained, and added that today he could memorized two of 30 parts of Quran. 

Now Aphin is a student of Jurusan Tarbiyah Perguruan Tinggi Ilmu Al-Quran (PTIQ), an institute of Quranic studies majoring in education. How are things going then? 

“I feel so content and at peace after embracing Islam as my faith,” Aphin admitted. Yet, he was a bit uncomfortable with the label of a mualaf - a new convert. “I want to be a truly Muslim, instead of a mualaf,” he said firmly.

Aphin argues, mualaf usually labels a new convert who has a background of different faith. Yet, he is worried about mislabeling a new convert. “Mualaf is not a title, but it bears certain consequences,” he said.   

Aphin believes mualaf is the term used to call a new convert due to his new experience to Islamic faith. For that reason, he says, mualaf is among eight categories of Muslims who deserves the right to accept charity.   

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