'Calling' and 'training': Role innovation and religious de-differentiation in commercialised Indonesian islam
This article explores parallels between emergent Islamic popular culture in the commercial arena in Indonesia and popular religion propagated through the mass media in Europe and North America. Focusing on two emergent types of emicly distinguished but eticly overlapping lay religious roles, that of the da'i (lay preacher) and the 'trainer', it shows how borrowing from globally disseminated genres of secular culture by Islamic lay leaders in the commercial arena in Indonesia partially blurs the boundaries between religiously marked and unmarked communications, despite the popularity there of Islamicly marked dress styles and consumables. This is suggestive of a similar, if partial, de-differentiation of the religious and other communication spheres in Indonesia such as Hubert Knoblauch found in Europe. However, as in his reading of European popular religion, it does not further imply Weberian 'disenchantment', since leading exemplars of Indonesian Islamic commercialised 'preaching' and 'training', such as those examined in case material presented here, still focus consumers on the transcendent, while those proselytisers yet work to overcome the compartmentalisation of Indonesian selves in their differentiated modern society.
Journal of Contemporary Religion
Studies of Asian Society