Mysticism as Deviant Religion
Case Name: Selong District Court Criminal Case of Amaq Bakri
Case Synopsis: An unexpected effect of post-1998 Indonesian democratization efforts is the sharp rise in accusations and persecutions of blasphemy. This module examines the dynamics of religious regulation through “lawfare,” or contestation among groups played out in the arena of courts. Taking the 2010 case of Amaq Bakri, a 70-year old Muslim farmer from East Lombok who claimed to have received revelations from the Angel Gabriel and to have visited heaven on several occasions, this modules explores the politics of “religion-making” that result when law inspires citizens to persecute perceived religious deviance. This case module originated in the work of Kari Telle.
Image of bird cages in Indonesia, courtesy of Kari Telle