Indonesia is a country that consists of more than 13,000 islands, 250 ethnicities and various kinds of cultures that are a source of national strength and potential. Thus, the 2018 Indonesian Culture Congress held on December 5-9 becomes very important for the influences of foreign cultures that enter without limits through various media. Moreover, the domestic political situation ahead of the 2019 Election currently tends to heat up and potentially lead to nation’s split. It takes thoughts and willingness to accept and respect differences, both related to the culture of the Indonesian nation and other nations’.
At the closing of the 2018 Indonesian Culture Congress, last Sunday (9/12), President Joko Widodo emphasizedthe importance of the spirit of tolerance in interacting amid the complexity of today's culture. He argued that interaction in various matters, including word contestation and politics would result in utterances of jealousy and hatred if not accompanied by tolerance.Therefore, President Joko Widodo took for example that at present,Indonesia needs a stage of tolerant interaction.
Meanwhile, Director General of Culture at the Ministry of Education and Culture, Hilmar Farid said that facing other differences and influences, Indonesian people have to position culture as inclusive one. Because, the characteristics of inclusive culture are mutual learning, knowing each other, knowing each other's views, understanding each other, and empathizing. So, tolerance will arise from understanding, instead of doctrine.
The 2018 Indonesian Culture Congress is expected to be a significant event to work and produce various ideas for the progress of the Indonesian nation in the future. Naturally, the discussion of cultural strategies that have been going on for 10 years, often leads to delays due to various interests. Fortunately, there are points in the Cultural Strategic Agenda that have been successfully formulated at the 2018 Cultural Congress. These points are to provide space for the diversity of cultural expressions and encourage cultural interaction to strengthen the inclusive culture. This is expected to be a reference in handling and maintaining the sustainability of national culture.
Then, the results of the congress become recommendation to be immediately followed up by the government as the regulator of the Indonesian nation. However, the effectiveness of the Cultural Strategic Agenda does not have to depend on the government alone. The Indonesian people must love and feel proud as part of the Indonesian nation. Thus, all stakeholders have to maintain and respect each other and agree on the values of the diversity of the Indonesian nation in a culture.