Bearing Together the Weight of Reality
This dissertation tries to show the contribution and challenge of a Jesuit university in nurturing an ethic of collaboration for the common good by responding to the problem of fragmentation in post-authoritarian Indonesia. The history of compartmentalization since Dutch colonization, the unleashing of greedy elites after the fall of the Suharto regime and the silent penetration of neoliberal ideology through commodification of higher education on one hand contribute to the decline of the massive civic movement in higher education, but on the other hand open a new form of social movement through various local initiatives (Chapter I). It is in responding to this tension that an ethic of collaboration proves to be helpful, both in initiating a strong alliance among various groups and in respecting the plurality of its manifestations. The tradition of post-Vatican II Catholic Social Teaching, especially in Sollicitudo Rei Socialis and Caritas in Veritate, provides a solid grounding for proposing such an ethic of collaboration with its three recurring important themes: solidarity, subsidiarity, and the common good (Chapter II). This normative vision of collaboration for the common good is not alien to the Indonesian world view. Three Indonesian pedagogues (Ki Hajar Dewantara, Nicolaus Driyarkara and Mochtar Buchori) not only support the possibility of a cross-cultural dialogue between an ethic of collaboration for the common good based on Post-Vatican II Catholic Social Teaching and the Indonesian virtue of gotong royong (working together), but also show how the didactic of such a vision should be started in various forms and levels of education (Chapter III). Therefore, enlightened by Ignacio Ellacuría, the historical mission of a Jesuit university in the context of a post-authoritarian society is to provide space to engage with the people’s struggle to attain its personal and communal wellbeing. This commitment to be a-different-kind-of-university is carried out through research, pedagogy and community service (Chapter IV). In so doing, Jesuit higher education in post-authoritarian Indonesia will embody the mystique of service and bears a theologal dimension in its various collaborative practices to historicize the reign of God which is in process toward its fullness (Chapter V).