Book Review: Sketsa Gaza

Tidak banyak anak muda zaman sekarang yang peduli dengan isu Palestina. Kalau pun peduli, tidak banyak yang memahami secara utuh apa yang sebenarnya terjadi di sana. Jika saya pantau narasi yang bertebaran di sekitar, banyak yang menganggap konflik Palestina-Israel adalah konflik agama; sebuah perang antara kaum Muslim dan Yahudi. Bahkan ada penulis dan produser film di Indonesia yang membuat kisah seakan-akan pembelaan Palestina adalah milik kaum Muslim saja. Pesan yang sampai: untuk membela Palestina, kita harus menghancurkan Yahudi. Tak ayal, banyak yang melabeli para pembela Palestina sebagai ‘Islamis radikal’ yang mau berjihad ke Tanah Suci melawan kaum Yahudi.

Tapi, benarkah seperti itu? Benarkah konflik ini adalah konflik agama?

Baca lanjutannya di link ini: bit.ly/MajalahDialektika

Urban Sketch #1

Ini adalah kumpulan lukisan-lukisanku (urban sketch/travel sketch) sepanjang perjalananku di Iran pada November tahun 2017.

Cara Menyembuhkan Hati yang Sakit dan Terluka

Aku berasumsi kamu membaca tulisan ini karena sedang sedih, kesal, marah, bingung, benci, malu, capek, sampe pengen mati aja. Mungkin perasaan itu muncul begitu saja, atau kamu baru mengalami hal yang buruk. Mungkin kamu baru diputusin cowok (aku ga pro-pacaran btw), direndahin sama teman sendiri, dikhianati, digoblog-goblogin, diejek, dapet physical abuse dari orang terdekat, melihat anggota keluarga terbaring sakit (karena virus corona, mungkin?), atau capek sama tugas kuliah yang numpuk ga kelar-kelar karena WFH. Aku akan menyebut semua emosi negatif ini sebagai ‘rasa sakit dan terluka’, karena ia bikin hati kita ciut, lemah, dan seperti ditusuk sesuatu. Maka, kali ini aku mau memperkenalkanmu sebuah teknik agar terbebas dari rasa ini.

Sumber: Medium

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Filsafat #3: Tentang Plato dan Demokrasi

Hola! Setelah menghilang selama bertahun-tahun, akhirnya aku menambah tulisan di seri Filsafat ini. Alasanku untuk comeback ada dua: pertama, tulisanku “Filsafat #1: Mitos dan Logos berhasil menggaet banyak pembaca. Kedua, aku dapat banyak suntikan pengetahuan baru di bangku kuliah, tepatnya di mata kuliah Teori Politik Klasik. Jadi, apa yang akan kutuliskan di unggahan kali ini terinspirasi dari matkul tersebut, tak lupa dibumbui dengan argumen tambahan dari sumber-sumber lain.

Kali ini, aku ingin bercerita tentang demokrasi. Demokrasi adalah sebuah sistem negara yang dipercayai pertama kali muncul di Yunani kuno, tepatnya Athena, di bawah kekuasaan seorang negarawan bernama Pericles. Demokrasi di Athena bisa dilihat dari partisipasi penuh dari rakyatnya dalam urusan negara dan hak yang sama rata bagi seluruhnya untuk bersuara. Jadi, warga Athena rajin berkumpul di majelis umum atau Assembly sekitar seminggu sekali untuk berdiskusi, berdebat, dan memberikan suara langsung dalam pembuatan kebijakan negara. Topik yang didiskusikan bisa tentang perang, pajak, agama, hingga fasilitas publik. Ini agak berbeda dengan sistem demokrasi di banyak negara modern di mana pembuatan kebijakan diamanatkan kepada wakil rakyat. Di sini perlu dicatat bahwa partisipasi penuh rakyat Athena dalam pembuatan kebijakan bisa terjadi karena wilayah mereka kecil dan jumlah penduduk juga sedikit.   

sumber: https://worldhistory.us/

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Pengalaman Model United Nation Pertamaku

Ikutan Model United Nation adalah mimpiku sejak SMP, meskipun keinginan itu hanya berdasarkan gengsi semata dan aku ga begitu mengerti apa sebetulnya yang dilakukan selama kegiatan itu. Pokoknya setiap kali melihat beberapa orang yang kukenal di medsos sedang flexing megang plakat MUN, pakai jas rapi, duduk di aula luxurious: they all looked really fancy. Baru setelah kuliah aku tahu kalau ikut MUN itu bukan hanya tentang keren-kerenan berlagak ala diplomat, tapi kita sebagai peserta harus punya skill debat, pidato, negosiasi, menulis, dan kepempinan yang bagus agar diakui sebegai delegasi yang baik dan dapat penghargaan seperti Best Delegate, Honorable Mention, dll. Kalaupun merasa ga punya skills yang aku sebutkan di atas, ternyata boleh-boleh aja ikut. Resikonya hanyalah ga dapet penghargaan aja, so it’s pretty much a nothing-to-lose situation, at least for me.

JAVA MUN delegates after closing ceremony

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What is it Like Being A ‘Maba’: An Honest Observation

What Is it like being a 'maba'

This morning I woke up and spent some good reflective minutes thinking about how these past two month after I got accepted to unpad had treated me and what I feel about it. This surely has been an emotional roller-coaster; dense-but-loose bag of lessons; a good-yet-dissapointing kickstart that I may regret later in life. Things are not working as I imagined them to be, I get worn out so easily; which is apparently explainable given that this whole uni activities are hella hectic; something that I don’t used to went through in my homeschooling years.

What was hard is figured out that I’m not the smartest person in the room; I more often that not am just an average. Some of my friends appear to be very passionate (to join heaps of organisations and extracurricular units at the same time), brave (to raise their hand, to lead a project, to speak up in front of the class), and keen-witted individuals. I am not, very far away from that.

I also recently just experienced my first failure in my uni life; I got rejected from joining unpad’s English Speaking Union, yeay! Though I wholeheartedly believe that this is just a smaller-sized success that help me to learn, I couldn’t help but crying my heart out; it did make my day gone blue. I even put a long ass time to think about what did I do wrong in the interview; am I that bad and uncapable? Yes, there you go all the self-doubts and whatnot.

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What happens when we don’t care about having a career

What Is it like being a 'maba'(1)

As I finished my high school diploma and getting ready to pursue a bachelor’s degree in political science, I find something interesting. I encounter quite a large number of people of my age being abundantly worried and confused about which college major is worth to choose. They eventually choose a specific major based on job prospects. While I understand where this consternation comes from, given that we need to earn a decent income to live comfortably and to survive in this crazy world, I’d argue that this mindset is not the best one to embrace, at least for me.

For one thing, choosing a college major based on future job outlook tends to be quite stressful. Pursuing fancy majors and therefore having ‘respected’ jobs and stable income is the idea that society dictated us to have. It is what I think as one of the reasons why depression has surged to epidemic levels in recent decades as it has impacted millions of people. Amid complexities of modern life, with all its pressure, many people see life as a showroom, where your job and status define your worth as a human being. I see this as a societal/psychological challenge we have to tackle for a better future.

I think one of the solutions to this problem is to adopt a healthier perspective that we choose a specific major only because we love it and not what other people say. Yes, it is cliche, but I do still find even myself and plenty of people around me being kind of submissive to the external force. When we genuinely love what we study and give the best effort to it, we no longer need to worry about the future job. It will look for us in reverse as we are the experts in whichever field. Besides, all areas of study are equally valuable if you want to take a peek to its essence rather than the value that society gives.

Long before I opt to study political science, I have always been interested in political issues around the world. It can about Jokowi-Prabowo’s presidential race, the Yellow Vest demonstration, the Hongkong anti-extradition bill protest, the Korean conflicts, Theresa May’s resignation, Ibrahim Zakzaky’s political movement in Nigeria, and so on so forth. I wondered what it means to have power? What are state and nation? How some conflict appears and winds down, what is the far-right ideology, traditional conservatism, Marxism, social democracy? All these questions have been lingering on my mind, and I really can’t wait to figure that out. It is safe for me to say that I don’t mind about postgraduate jobs and I’ve stopped caring about a career since I’ve let myself to enroll in this course for the sake of it. I don’t know, but this kind of mindset is somehow liberating like a breath of fresh air.

This thing works if you know yourself and what you love/passionate about. I know a friend of mine who had no idea what major she wanted to pursue. Eventually, she chose whatever option available rather than asses the importance of each option beforehand. If you’re part of the crowd who still haven’t gotten your heart set on any fields of study, it’s okay everyone has their own time. But one thing I want to point out is maybe this plight is what “formal” school accountable for. I argue that schools distract students to freely explore whatever they passionate about by giving too much content, too many subjects. Students are not getting enough time for genuine learning or reflection, and that’s what happened to my friend.

Another thing just to remember why caring about a career before studying in college is no use is that degrees are no longer a guarantee of getting a job or better pay nowadays. It is no secret that information learned during college is not always useful for actual work demands. Unless you opt to work as traditional “professionals” like doctors or engineers, your skills and experiences are much more looked for than your degrees and certificates.

Ever since I started my homeschooling years and having conversations/listening to many activists (SJW, whatever you call it), I’ve come to the conclusion that caring about our career may sometimes characterize us as selfish individuals. It’s like okay, I choose this job because of the money; I want to become more prosperous by myself. Meanwhile, our nation still has a lot of problems, it is burning and choking on its smoke. The education system, mindset, infrastructure, segregation, corruption, lack of identity, social gap are the problems we’re facing. Yet, we choose not to give a damn. I believe that humanity should be our raison d’etre, regardless of what path we’re on. What I mean by that, our job/career shouldn’t be the final goal, because if it is then what’s the point of our existence.

So there you go, I hope this reaches you (and I) well.

Tentang Mimpi dan Ekspektasi: Apa Bedanya?

Aku menulis ini ketika sedang menunggu hasil SBMPTN. Ada suatu perasaan yang tipikal dalam momen-momen seperti ini: ketika kita merasa masa depan begitu redup dan kita mencoba meraba-raba apa yang terjadi kalau keinginan tidak tercapai. Apa yang terjadi jika aku tidak masuk jurusan impian padahal aku sudah kerja keras belajar? Akankah aku dianggap gagal dalam hidup, pecundang, bodoh, not good enough, ga beruntung? Perasaan seperti ini sudah sering banget kualami, terutama karena aku sering ikut lomba (dan… ga menang hehe) dan berbagai macam tes akademis, di mana aku selalu stres memikirkan hasilnya. Akankah aku menang? Akankah aku lulus? Akankah nilaiku bagus? Kalau engga gimana? Mampus gue kalau gagal! Aku yakin perasaan ini universal—semua orang hampir pasti pernah mengalaminya. Ini adalah perasaan yang berbahaya karena bisa berujung ke depresi.

Beberapa minggu yang lalu, ada sebuah ide yang muncul di kepalaku yang aku kira bisa menjawab persoalan ini, yaitu tentang pentingnya membedakan mimpi dan ekspektasi. (Peringatan: definisi-definisi atas kedua kata ini adalah hasil interpretasiku; bukan definisi KBBI).

Aku menyadari bahwa sejak aku bisa membedakan keduanya dan memilih salah satu yang lebih baik, aku menjadi lebih santai dalam memikirkan masa depan, tantangan-tantangan, dan cita-citaku. Selain itu, aku bisa menghindari ketakutan-ketakutan yang tidak perlu. And I encourage you to give this some thought.

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An Abstract Feeling and Sensation: “The Sublime”

There was this ineffable, weird, ambiguous, and hazy sensation that I’ve been experiencing for the past five years; probably, it was after puberty hit me. And I thought myself insane as I was quite sure that nobody would feel this particular sensation like I was. This strange temporary sensation enters my mind whenever I went traveling and get to see a row of enormous mountains of Alborz or the tropical landscape in Lombok. The feeling also comes when witnessing the vast night sky from my house’s attic window, and I get to see millions of stars moving at a million miles a day. It enters when I see huge skyscrapers in a city or whenever I’m watching some cinematic nature videos showing the splendid and grandeur of god’s creations that beyond all the possibility of calculation or imitation. I get this feeling even more tensely when I think of the galaxies in our universe, how it can be so huge to the point where humans didn’t discover all of it yet.

It made me feel that my existence, human activities, and interaction are so insignificant as all of these big things around us would keep turning, moving, and existing even without us here.

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