Me and My Pesantren (5): Nyantri, then Served

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Since becoming a student until serving at the Miftahul Huda Sumenep Islamic Boarding School, it has been a blessing in itself for me. Personally, I can develop interests and skills in any life because of the principles developed by the pesantren.

I felt this when I studied at the Miftahul Huda Islamic Boarding School, starting from MI (Madrasah Ibtidaiyah) to graduating MA (Madrasah Aliyah) in 2014. This boarding school is located in Pangabasen Hamlet, Gapura Timur, Gapura District, Sumenep Regency, Madura, East Java.

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I feel that the rules applied in the pesantren led me to the values ​​of religiosity, adab, tawadhu, and solidarity with each other while at the pesantren, and above all, independence itself.

Substantial differences in the rules of pesantren life are often encountered in Indonesia, both in terms of morals, ethics, and aesthetics. But, nevertheless, I have always believed one hundred per cent that life in this pesantren is a wealth for the santri that must be preserved. So then, what often looks different in the life of the pesantren is that the Kiai are always sincere, the Kiai of the pesantren are very thorough in educating the students, the Kiai are full of patience in providing actual stimulus to the students.

These rules and learning styles appear in Islamic boarding schools so that most students can only apply expressivity while living in Islamic boarding schools and then develop them in the community.

Another thing that becomes its own wealth for santri is the scientific community of Islamic boarding school Kiai, which is actually more directed to things of virtue. Because what is clear is that one Kiai and another Kiai are never separated in one line fixed brackets.

Basically, the struggle of the late Kiai Husamuddin as the founder of the Miftahul Huda Islamic Boarding School can still be felt today. Coupled with the next generation after he passed away, who can still be said to be one line or one thought with the vision and mission of the founder of the pesantren. Although many programs have been renewed, the most urgent thing is to maintain the wealth of Islamic boarding school principles without in the least reducing our sense of obedience to the values ​​and norms of eastern customs that Kiai Husamuddin had championed in the past.

Pesantren, in general, is a place for students to learn the rules of scientific treasures. Just as Kiai Husamuddin had aspired to. He is the founder of the Miftahul Huda Islamic Boarding School, better known as Al-Huda, which has received essential appreciation and full support from the surrounding community. Until one day, he established formal madrasas from PAUD to Madrasah Aliyah thanks to prayers and struggles that never left his soul.

Kiai Husamuddin did many struggles during his life. One of them is establishing a boarding school where I used to study as a student. After returning from the gathering, he attended continuously. He struggled to build a formal institution, hoeing himself, even late at night, sometimes accompanied by some of his students.

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Some things can’t be understood from the busyness of attending da’wah from village to village. The reader can imagine that the number of days during the week of the gatherings he attended was actually more gatherings that he attended. One night, sometimes two places he attended which were more than 10 km away by foot. But all that he usually does with a sense of patience with a sense of total responsibility.

This is undoubtedly an essential lesson for us to imitate in the footsteps of his struggle, who is still ready to think about the surrounding community who are, on average, illiterate, even though he only leaves his time in between his busy schedule of interacting with the sociocultural da’wah that he consistently carries out from one place to another.

After Kiai Husamuddin returned, the Miftahul Huda Islamic Boarding School was cared for by the late KH Hanif Abdullah. He left many exciting changes that had also contributed to pioneering the development of formal education during Kiai Husamuddin’s lifetime. Until recently, the Miftahul Huda Islamic Boarding School was managed by KH M Mukhktar (KH Hanif Abdullah’s younger brother).

As long as KH M Mukhtar was a caregiver, he already had a solid relationship with the Ministry of Manpower (Ministry of Manpower) in maintaining and carrying out extraordinary trust. This mandate is in the form of being given the confidence to build a multimedia building. I think it is also my responsibility as a pesantren servant to continue to make social changes and emotional approaches to millennials in this 4.0 era. Building relationships with the Ministry of Manpower and KH M Mukhtar on the sidelines of his busy life is also the same as Kiai Husamudin, namely preaching through associations.

In addition, Miftahul Huda Islamic Boarding School already has many assets. Among them are coconut plantations, odong-odong, student cooperatives which, of course, remain under the auspices of the Miftahul Huda Foundation. This is what I think is a pure blessing from the founder. Thanks to prayer and patience, the boarding school is still beautifully preserved. Still beautiful all day.

As the saying goes, “a fruit that falls will not be far from the stem,” as well as this Islamic boarding school in my village: there are always changes that cannot be reached with common sense from generation to generation, like the Fokada (Al-Huda Alumnim Communication Forum) for example. The Fokada, I mean, is a pesantren-derived organization that was initiated directly several decades ago by and from many circles, both alumni and the extended family of the Miftahul Huda Islamic Boarding School itself.

The relationships that are still standing strong until now have produced a lot of character for the alumni’s determination and patience in building unlimited solidarity. Fokada itself concerns three essential departments: the education division, the network division, and the business division. This Fokada runs independently according to their respective departments. It has even become a brand in the minds of their respective alumni. Because on the 1st of Muharram, every year through the network division, we must hold a large alumni meeting whose hopes are (to return to their place of origin) and remember the life that took place while at the pesantren. It’s easy like that.

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Not only that, the harmony of the Miftahul Hudan Islamic Boarding School with the Fokada has become an extraordinary wealth in the eyes of alumni. This pesantren-derived organization is doing a lot of new things. As in the business department, for example. Through an ideal suggestion from a caregiver (KH Mukhtar), Fokada recently invited all Al-Huda alumni to donate one banana with the icon “One Alumni One Banana Tree.” In contrast, the proceeds from selling the bananas went to the Fokada, managed by the Fokada. And a few per cent were allocated for the needs of the Foundation —until in the end — it helped a little the process of sustaining educational mutualism at the Miftahul Huda Islamic Boarding School. And through the business division, it can open jobs for the closest alumni by being given the capital to sell credit.

There is another thing that I think is interesting to discuss. Fokada, through the network division, also coordinates with alumni. One of them is building Fokada branch associations in each region within a village radius scale, selecting alumni to become chairmen, secretaries, and regional coordinator treasurers to become administrators in each village. They also hold meetings every week.

From this pesantren, the existence of santri becomes uswah for the universe. Let’s say build and motivate alumni while maintaining solidarity even though many alumni are far apart. Equally important is in the education division. Central administrators also advance learning in Islamic boarding schools, whether by holding special parenting for PAUD mothers, for example, managing studios, holding literary camp training, and others that are still related to world education.

I think the real wealth is growing on the terraces of the pesantren. There are many exciting things that cannot be discussed as long as we study to study at the pesantren. Many silly stories are always remembered for all time. In fact, many learning methods are not commonly found in the world of lectures but unconsciously can be obtained and are usually applied in Islamic boarding schools. The rules of tawadhuadab to teachers, and many other norms that I cannot mention one by one.

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