What’s your vision of Indonesia?

INDONESIA-IDAYI love questions. They move me.

I was sitting with some friends discussing what we’re going to do as a school in the future. A friend asked how I would see Indonesia in the future – because, he said, whatever we do must be in support to that. Brilliant.

So I launched into this enthusiastic response of how I see this country in the future. Yes, I am nationalistic, and I am one of the most optimistic persons with regard to the future of this country.

I spoke of the emerging leaders – the likes of Jakarta governor Joko Widodo, Bandung mayor Ridwan Kamil and Surabaya mayor Tri Rismaharani, who are so committed to serving their respective regions.

I also spoke of the social grassroots movements by mostly the younger generations as well as of some private sectors’ initiatives towards a more humane and conscious way of working.

Indonesia is on the move. That’s the backdrop against which we need to work.

How does that relate to commoners like you and I? For a start, we live here – and chances are we were born and raised here too, and so were our parents, and our parents’ parents.

So, this is us. This is our bandwagon. There isn’t even a choice between in or out. We’re in it. Period.

Yes, but can we do as individuals? What’s our role in this movement?

Now, that leads to the second question discussed in my conversation with my friends: “What is it that keeps you awake at night? What is it that you cannot stop talking about?”

Because that might be an indication of what truly propels us, almost without us trying. That thing that we cannot stop talking about would inform us of who we truly are, what we need to do, what we can do, and what our role in the society is.

And that’s a very personal, or even private, contemplative question. One that cannot be answered through the mind at this instant.

One needs to really ask oneself and listen attentively to the spontaneous response that would spring from within. We might be in for the surprise of our life.

I have an inkling of what mine is. What’s yours?


The article was first published on The Jakarta Globe’s blogs. The photo was from the same article in the blog.

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