The Indonesian government requires its citizens to carry a national identity card, the Kartu Tanda Penduduk, or KTP. When applying for the card, each citizen must indicate (along with quite a bit of other data) what religion they embrace. An example is the Javanese Muslim who yet firmly believes in the existence of Indian deities and indigenous folk heroes portrayed the popular wayang kulit shadow play, as well as in a host of goddesses, ghosts, spirits, demons and genies said to inhabit his world. Yet almost anywhere you go in Java, you will hear the call to prayer amplified by what is left of the loudspeakers at the top of nearby mosques.
Since everyone in Java feels the omnipresence of Islamic rhetoric and imagery, and is well aware of the religion embraced by their neighbors, in order to maintain rukun (social harmony), many people who do not observe the religious obligations of Islam nor have received any religious instruction will indicate Islam as their religion. This gives rise to the notion of the most nominal of Javanese Muslims, the "Islam KTP" or "Islam statistik'. But while the statistics claim that Java and the nation of Indonesia is well over 95% Muslim, it begs the question of what variation of religious belief exists within that large category. In fact, there is no verifiable single source of Javanese Islam, or a single Javanese interpretation, style or practice of Islam.
As is generally known following the four caliphs or successors to Muhammed, in 661 A.D. the governor of Syria challenged Ali for the caliphate. As first Ali and then his son Husayn were assassinated, control of the caliphate passed from the hands of Muhammed's followers in Medina. The Persian segment of Ali's supporters reacted to his murder by renouncing the main body of Islam to become Shi'ites. Here, the privileging of the state of martyrdom was instilled early on, and a doctrine of divine right developed which invested the person of the imam or religious leader of a mosque with divinely sanctioned authority and power; in addition to being the guide to the community-- their religious leaders were also seen as heirs and interpreters of religious knowledge into the distinct Shi'ist law and theology. Thus the more orthodox Sunnis claimed to follow the way of the Prophet and to majority of Indonesian Muslims belong exept that many have also been influenced by Sufism.As is known, Sufi’s used to believe that they can attain enlightenment and knowledge of or ultimately union with God through concentration on mystical practice one that we still find in Java today. This includes Dzikir chanting, trance dancing, and asceticism to bring on a state of ecstatic spiritual meditation that they believe will produce a relationship (and a blurring of the boundaries) between the individual self and God not unlike certain ideas of Gnosticism exept in this case inspired by philosphy’s deriving from what is now called India and whereby Sufi’s observe the five pillars of Islam.
A discussion of Islam in Indonesia usually begins with speculation on how it arrived in the archipelago, and why it was embraced by such a majority of the population. And where some historians and anthropologists claim that Islam came to Indonesia through ordinary Muslim sailors and traders, and that through commerce that commenced in port and coastal cities, conversion followed contact—others think it was brought by wandering Sufi artisans, scholars and teachers, who brought various mystical and cultural elements of Southern India. Obviously
The second explanation is favored by those who focus on mystical aspects. Fact is there are few if any reliable historical sources from the period that document any details of how Islam came to Java and how it spread. Most likely however it was introduced to Java around the 14th century, and that transition to Islam was a gradual process. (Woodward 1989:54 and 1996; Hefner 1987). Today in turn, most practicing Indonesian Muslims are considered to be part of two organized movements that started in the early 20th century. The organizations Muhammadiyah and Nahdlatul Ulama (N.U.) early on attracted the comparatively well-to-do urban, educated, middle class.
Muhammadiyah doctrine argues the necessity of a return to the original fundamentals of the religion as laid down in the AI Qur' an and the hadith, stripped of the embellishment of culture and „corrupt" syncretic practice, using the original texts to guide orthodox praxis in today's modern world. They seek to interpret Allah's commandments, translating the original into something that is faithful to the original intent of the commandments, but is meaningful to the time and circumstances of their life. (For example, calculating into modem currency the cost of a fine for sinning, which may consist of a camel, or freeing a slave. For more on this, see Noer 1973:303) They will quote the hadith about the fellow that was constantly praying in the mosque in two different versions: Muhammed asks the nuin, when he brags about his fervency, who is taking care of his family while he. is worrying about his own afterlife, and reminds him of his obligations in this world; or he asks the man's friends who provides him with food and water, and when they answer that they do, declares that they are more pious than he. They are also quick to remind you about the hadith which describes those things you can take with you into the afterlife, or the things that. truly count for religious merit: the useful things you teach to others; the useful things that you help build for the community (such as mosques, schools, or roads), and the good works and intentions of a good and faithful child. They defend the Islamic tradition as it has developed in Java, which includes Javanese (arguably pantheistic) traditional cultural practice and values, and they endorse the legitimacy of Javanese traditional rituals such as selamatan, and rites such as mini-pilgrimages to Javanese keramat graves.
Nahdlatul Ulama in turn, tend to believe in the saintliness of kyai religious leaders, and accept the kyai's word as unquestioned law. They direct their attention to achievement of personal perfection as preparation for the afterlife. N.U. members will focus on doing the right thing-which means how things. have "always" been done in Java, without interference from the West- guarding their personal life t~ insure staying on the right path, and maintaining a fierce loyalty to their kyai. "Despite wide variations in practice and belief, there is no organized schism, such as between traditionalist and modernist camps. To the contrary...the unifying factor is a willingness to make concessions in order to maintain social harmony in the neighborhood" (Beatty 1999:156).
In fact in East Javanese, many Muslims do not identify themselves as staunch members of either Muhammadiyah or Nahdlatul Ulama, and only occasionally find themselves in the midst of a controversy based on the conflicting teachings of these two schools of thought. Differences in ideas about proper death rites, burial practice or the way to calculate the beginning or ending of the fasting month will occasionally cause a bit of friction within a family or a neighbourhood, but usually the Javanese Muslim, in good Javanese tradition, will seek the path of rukun, and go along with whatever the majority in his area considers to be good praxis. Distinctness of character of their belief or difference in styles of their praxis however, does not in any way indicate physical separation of individuals. Those nominal 'identity card' Muslims, have selected Islam as the least contentious of the five major religions that are options on the national identity card, KTP. This style may not include observation of the pillars of Islam, but as a friendly and sympathetic Javanese seeking rukun, congenial praxis will demand participation in any form of community Islamic activity: praying in public on big Islamic holidays, visiting and asking forgiveness of friends and neighbors at the end of Ramadan, participation in community mutual building or helping activities, and attendance at selamatan when invited, with a bowing of heads and muttering under the breath as if praying along when Islamic prayers are chanted in Arabic.
The close quarters of the physical conditions in which they live in villages or urban low-income kampung make community a force in every family and the life of every individual, and in order to maintain rukun, the semblance of an Islamic stance or the barest observation of Islamic social responsibilities and religious practice are adopted. Like the Madurese villagers described by Beatty, congenial praxis takes care to cause no offence, and to conscientiously participate in openly Islamic events: Indeed, many would find a conscious hostility to Islam both socially embarrassing and personally disturbing, therefore unconducive to slamet" (Beatty 1999:120).
Woodward found that in Central Java "(m)any kejawen Muslims who do not attend the Friday prayer or fast during Ramadan, will do so if they happen to live near a mosque" (Woodward 1989:8). I did not find this to be the case in Malang. Congenial praxis does not require fasting during the month of Ramadan: fasting is seen to yield "Javanese (rather than specifically Islamic) benefits, such as tranquility, security, and self-mastery. These benefits are sufficient justification for ritual observance: there is no need to delve deeper into the nature of scriptural authority" (Beatty 1999:120). However, congenial praxis requires an abstention of eating in public during the fasting month so as not to disturb those who are fasting, and although it does not require daily prayer, this style of conformity and conflict avoidance will require quiet during the daily times for prayer, and avoidance of activities that might otherwise disturb people who are praying.The giving of zakat might be encouraged, but usually those of this orientation are poor enough that they are eligible to receive it.
Congenial praxis does not include a harboring .. a desire to go on the haj. Ritual observances of circumcision, marriage and mortuary rites in this orientation may combine Javanese tradition with Islamic flair. Congenial praxis presents no set ideas about the nature of pahala (religious merit), may even include skepticism about the afterlife, or the need for prayer, as so clearly stated by Beatty's informants (Beatty 1999: 153-154). Typically the context of congenial praxis results in education and experience limited to the daily life of the village or kampung low-income neighborhood. Thus, those who espouse this style of Islam might own a copy of the AI Qur' an, but if they do it was probably a traditional gift at circumcision or marriage; they did not read it. Yet the central principle of this style of praxis is orthodoxy which is ironic. In fact they are driven by a sense of duty and fear of sin; sure, unswerving and obedient to what they are taught about religion by parents, schools, and especially kyai. Coriscientious praxis is intolerant of unbelievers or people who sully the faith, and demands a rejection of what is said to or suspected to be syirik (polytheistic or animistic)-kaffir, sin, or sacrilegious. For example, Chinese restaurants. Or hotels are anathema because there may be pork in the food and certainly are places for sinful assignation. This manner of praxis Produces piety, and as Beatty observed "(f)or the pious.. .Islam is a system of ritual prescriptions rather . than a coherent and explicit system of beliefs, an ethical code or a cosmology. Among the few who are willing to discuss doctrine, one quickly comes to a bedrock of unquestionable axioms and idiosyncratic speculation"(1999:121). A number of very small splinter groups exist that practice forms of Islam that may be following tradition or custom from other country‘s, tend to be more conservative, and are more active in missionizing. For example, Ikwanul Mulsimin, whose women wear full Arab hijab veils and black gloves; or Al Irsyad, which attracts mostly ethnic Arab Javanese.
Regular performance of prayers, keeping the fast, well, religiously, and strict observance of other (sometimes apocryphal) tenets define conscientious praxis. This orientation is common in the kauman, the area near the central mosque of the town, near the "Arab Quarter" in for example Malang (E.Java), where traditionally the orang alim, the Islamic faithful, have lived for generations, going to the same mosque for most of their lives. This style of Islam encourages the wearing of obviously Muslim clothing, but the women who adopt this style won't necessarily cover their head outside the home unless they have gone on the haj. Conscientious' praxis encourages very generous and regular giving of zakat-not public, showy, organized charitable activity, but quiet personal acts of private generosity. However some families with'this orientation may be poor enough to receive zakat. Conscientious praxis strongly promotes the haj, both in terms of the performance of religious duty and the prestige it will bring the in individual believer in their community. Within the community, being seen to perform this vital and traditionally dangerous duty generates respect for the status of hajji or hajjah. It is an important rite of passage: before the pilgrims depart on the haj, friends arid family take leave of them ritually, and they are feted upon their return. This mode of belief finds value in a death in Mecca; if someone dies while on the haj, and especially in the holy city of Mecca, they are considered particularly blessed. Ritual observances of circumcision, marriage and mortuary rites may also combine Javanese tradition with Islamic flair, as do trips to the graves of the wali sanga or nine „ apostles of Islam" who some say brought Islam to Java. Conscientious praxis condones a relentless pursuit of pahala.
Typically the context of conscientious praxis results in extensive religious learning. With more education, more money and more opportunity for experience outside the kampung or village than those who embrace congenial praxis, conscientious praxis is self-limmiting in what its practitioners experience or read, and relies on kyai to set standards for thought and behavior. Custom this context encourages frequent quotes from the Al Qur' an or other religious utterings in daily secular speech, and veneration of books, especially books on religion. Families who adhere to this style of Islam read the Al Qur'an frequently, but didn't usually understand Arabic-they may have learned the meaning of the surahs in Indonesian, but they chanted their prayers and read from the Al Qu'ran in Arabic. They usually had an old Al Qur' an handed down from their parents, or brought home from the haj by a close friend or family member. Although convivial praxis is requires the serious observation of all the five pillars of Islam, it also allows finding fun in being a Muslim and in Muslim fashion (elaborate busana Muslim outfits, hats and embroidered clothing), including little Muslim- electronic gadgets, like a watch or cell phone that beeps five times a day when it is time for prayer and includes a compass set to indicate the direction of the Ka'bah. Convivial praxis does not demand that women cover their heads, but custom in this context would make it likely that a head covering would be worn if they have made the haj, and an infinite variety of headscarves-plain, patterned, embroidered, emblazoned with sequins and small glittery stones-are usually made ready for every outfit or occasion. Convivial praxis promotes an enthusiastic payment of zakat; and also often involves the organization of the distribution of zakat for their local mosque or neighborhood. In fact the active participation in consumer culture and an awareness of patterns of local culture and tradition were also readily observable. And supports a tendency to read and own popular books on religion, (as well as some secular fiction and possibly non-fiction) or owned several AI Qu'ran selected for their beauty or convenient size (such as little travel-size volumes with zippered covers that would fit in a purse).
Kyai: The Muslim Advisor (interpretar of the H.writings to lay people).
Most kyai are available for consultation throughout the day and into the late evening hours,with the exception of during the times set aside for the five daily prayers, and during the traditional afternoon rest period. Whereby the Kyai from East Java we observed, had a tendency to use the less formal, more intimate lower levels of the Javanese language with their local clientele. While the client almost always begins by addressing the kyai in high Javanese as a sign of respect and deference, the conversation tends to drift into the lower register that the East Javanese use on a daily basis, especially when the client is discussing him- or herself and her family. Yet, the words used to express agreement with what the kyai says and to take leave again, are always from the high Javanese krama lexicon.
The kyai's word. is treated as gospel; his interpretation of doctrine is considered unassailable; and his advice rarely elicits debate. The client may express doubt about whether or not they possess the strength of will or batin to perform what the kyai prescribes; they may discuss their inability to accept what the kyai assures them is God's will. But actual argument almost never erupts, as the kyai tells the Muslim client what she or he knows in their heart to be true, and reiterates reassuringly familiar doctrine in a powerfully persuasive language. The style of the kyai varies, but a kind yet firm paternalism is the commonest tone, wherein the kyai can condemn the sins that may have led to (social and/ or physical) disorder or disease and commend the client to a course of action-usually prayer and ritual seeking of forgiveness-that (God willing) will dispel dis-ease. The kyai furthermore can also prescribe folk medicines.
Jordaan quotes a joke he says is popular among doctors, about the ignorance of Madurese villagers: the villager goes to see a doctor, who gives him a prescription for some medicine. Several days later the man returns to the doctor, and says the prescription really worked...but the punch line comes when the doctor realizes that the man did not exchange the written prescription for medicine at a pharmacy, but instead soaked the paper in water and drank the water, a practice the doctor (and the modem interlocutor) sees as suspect, a superstitious, amusingly ignorant technique predicated on the power of suggestion (and frequently used by kyai). You can see his version of the joke in Jordaan 1985:175. And incidently, kyai’s do occassionaly give a written rajah amulet to dip in water for a patient to drink the amulet water of. However, the clientele of the kyai is not limited to the isolated, uneducated villager, easily duped by anything that smells of the sacred. Those who resort to a kyai however, will also include many of the urban faithful who simply believe in the potency of prayer and the efficacy of the iconography of Islam.
As the ‚clinical‘ encounter in this case begins, small talk with the kyai sets a relaxed tone, as the kyai is reassuringly welcoming, friendly and understanding. His manner is soothing, and even before treatment begins his clients are visibly less anxious. The move from the secular world of questions about relatives and jobs and residences, and what seems to be bothering the patient is gradually made when the kyai begins to comment on the problems and offer his advice, again, often based in sacred scripture. Mansurnoor found that the main treatment offered by kyai on the island of Madura Oust off the east coast of Java) are prayers and amulets (1990:222). Today kyai’s frequently will forbid people certain foods or activities, and recommend certain kinds of food or drink, fasting, or ritual observance or sacrifice. And yes one still also sees kyai‘s give patients amulets, to place in water to drink, to place on their body or to post on the home.27 but above all they will pray. The kyai may pray over the patient, and others may join him in that prayer. He may prescribe specific prayers to be performed at particular times of the day, or for a certain number of repetitions. It seemed to me that cures requiring prayer that involved the laying on of hands became less and less popular since the early 1990s, when a couple of kyai were accused of sexual harassment of young female clients. Thus unlike the dukun who frequently massages, pokes, grasps, even licks his or her patients, the curing techniques of a kyai rarely involve touch today.
Sometimes the kyai will give extensive advice in addition to curative prayers, amulets and spiritual prescriptions. Whether he chooses to instruct through indirect anecdote or references stories from the Hadith or the AI Qur' an, the advice is often very practical, specific, and comprehensive, and can take quite a while to transmit. In fact a curing sessions with a kyai can be lengthy, requiring an hour or more with each client. Very popular kyai and ones that hold large-group consultations or curing sessions place more emphasis on serving clients more quickly.
While few kyai‘s specialize in mental illness following phrases tend to repeated (translated from the Arabic, Javanese or Indonesian):
o Everything is in the hands of God
o Give up your burden and turn it over to God . Pray with me (by announcing" AI Fatihah")
o We are all just human, none of us is perfect
o We are all sinners, just human
o God is merciful and compassionate
o God does not give us any burdens that are too much for us to bear
Yet the kyai prescribe differing cures. Examples; in case, of a child who had been having bad dreams, while awake shrieking, losing weight and hair, had no desire to eat, and had developed red spots-hives or a rash-on her torso.The kia asked the child what her dreams were. He asked her about her bedroom (she slept with her parents) and about any conflicts that might have happened with anyone at her preschool. He asked if she had done anything bad, such as stealing anything, or hurting anyone. He asked if she had urinated anywhere in the house where people prayed, or in a mosque (somewhere other than the bathroom). He asked if she had cursed God, or her parents. The child was mostly quiet, and like Javanese parents do, the parents answered most of the questions put to the child, and answered, them negatively. The kyai finally began to ask the parents questions about what had been done with the placenta when she was born, and what kinds of ritual obligations had been performed to appease the "siblings" that had been born with their daughter. rrus referred to the belief that a person is created in the womb with one or more (typically four) siblings, manifested in/the physical world in the placenta, amniotic fluid, blood, vernix and/ or umbilical cord. The placenta is buried by the entrance of the baby's home and covered with a basket, and some kind of lantern or electric bulb is rigged to light the area for forty days or so after it is buried, to alert someone if an animal attempts to dig it up. From conception until after death a person is believed to be in the company of these siblings or companions, and these siblings will protect if treated well; if not, they may create a variety of problems. The kya determined that the parents had neglected the siblings of this little girl: the baby was born in the least expensive, most crowded ward of a large general hospital during one of the extremely busy "baby seasons". that follow nine months after the two auspicious months for marriage, and the placenta was misplaced. The siblings were angry, he said, and making the little girl sick. He laid his hands on the patient's head, praying to Allah to protect the girl from any further harm, gave the parents a rajah written amulet to hang in their bedroom over the bed, and told them to ask forgiveness of the siblings, and ask them to be kind to the little girl. They must chant dzikir every night in their house with neighbors for one month, to pray for the siblings and the little girl, and must feed some orphans in the name of the siblings. They must also plant a black bamboo in the comer of the yard where the siblings could dwell happily outside the house, and to protect from further disturbance. The family left, still looking very serious, after the parents kissed the kyai's hand, and the patient appeared unchanged.
The next case involved a dirty, dishevelled, stinking patient in his early thirties who was silent, escorted by his distraught young wife. After some brief introductory small talk, the wife recounted the patient's three-month downward spiral of despair and physical deterioration. The man had stopped communicating with others and would not go back to work; he would cry, but would or could not explain to his wife why he was crying; he did not eat or sleep well, and would not bathe regularly as had been his custom. The kyai prayed over the patient immediately, and the man raised his head and began to cry. As the kyai asked him questions in low Javanese, he would respond briefly, quietly, in the same. His wife looked on in fascination, and repeated several tUnes to the kyai that she had not been able to elicit a verbal response from him for more than a week. She began to cry as well. The kyai coaxed from the man an explanation: on the construction site where he worked he and another worker had fallen from the bamboo scaffolding on the second story of the building they were plastering; his friend died, and he just had the wind knocked out of him. He felt an enormous sense of guilt and somehow felt responsible for the accident. He came home' as quickly as possible from the other island where he was a contract worker, and was afraid and ashamed to return to work. The kyai assured the man that everything was in God's hands, that as humans we cannot understand the mystery of God's works, and it was a form of hubris to think that he was responsible when only God determines when we are born, when and who we marry, cind when we die. The man cried harder, and said that his friend was drinking alcohol, and so was he- in fact he encouraged his friend to drink, and he felt that the alcohol contributed to the fall that caused his death. The kyai asked if the bamboo broke. No, the patient said. How did he fall?, the kyai asked. He was handing his friend a bucket, and his friend's flip-flop broke when he leaned over to accept the bucket, and so he slipped, and the patient tried to catch - grabbed him for a moment, and fell too. The kyai told him he was very brave, and that we have to continue to be brave and go on, because God expects us to. That he needed to forgive himself, since God certainly forgave him. He explained to the wife that the patient had had a shock, but was just fine; he was just a quiet person like the kyai, and had become serious with the adult knowledge that comes with understanding of the world and the responsibility of being a good person. He told the man to try to find his friend's widow or parents, and tell them all the good things he could remember about his friend, see how they were accepting the death, and learn from their example. He told him to bathe and eat to keep up his strength and health, and to remember his responsibility to his own family. He should seek work closer to home, and return to work as soon as he could, and if he didn't want to do the same kind of work anymore, find some other honest work. And above all he should pray - for the strength to accept, for forgiveness, for the will to go on, to give thanks that he is alive and that he can keep his friend alive in his memory.The patient and the wife left. After only thirty-five minutes with the kyai, the patient looked visibly more animated, made eye contact, spoke and shook hands while taking leave, and even smiled. The wife kissed the kyai's hand, and gave him an envelope as she took her leave, and found to contain 20,000 rupiah.
The third case was a woman who had recently lost her baby of just over seven months of age in a bus accident. She pulled at her clothes restlessly, smiled incessantly, and keened heartbreakingly when 'the subject of her baby was broached. After a couple minutes of small talk and fifteen minutes or so of intensive questioning of the patient and the family members who brought in the woman (sister, brother-in-law, husband, and mother) in various levels of Javanese, the kyai determined the patient was possessed since she had spent too long with her mind idle, daydreaming of the baby. Because of her obvious distress and unwillingness to let the baby go, the baby was still with her, trying to make her feel better, and not moving on as he should. He instructed the mother to burn all the baby's things-toys, bedding, clothin and feeding utensils-and then to bathe, while praying and ordering the baby to go with God. She needed to do good works, to keep her mind busy all the time, to pray extra prayers, in addition to performing her regular five daily prayers. She was instructed to make packets of five-colored jenang rice cakes, pray a particular prayer over them and distribute them to her friends and neighbours. The kyai also told. her that after the selamatan ritual feast held forty days after the baby's death, she had to take food from that selamatan to the baby's grave, along with some water and dirt from her home to leave at baby's grave so baby would kerasan, or feel comfortable there... but at the same time he told her to keep telling the baby to move on, to let him go, to help him give up this earthly existence. The woman grew increasingly agitated, until, despite the stern injunctions of her family members, she began to wail and tear at her hair. At this point the kyai stood over the woman, firmly grasped her right hand in his, and in laud, ringing tones cast out the spirits he felt were inside her. "No, no, no!," she screamed, in low Javanese, and thrashed in her chair. The kyai continued his imprecations, invoking the help and mercy of God. As he began loudly chanting prayers in Arabic from the AI Qur' an, the family members joined him; the noise drew some of the kyai's household, who drifted in from behind the living room, and some people waiting' on the porch began peering through the windows, and soon all were praying. The woman stiffened, fell to the floor, and exhibited pronounced trembling and jerking of the limbs, as her tongue lashed her lips and her teeth snapped. Everyone prayed on, while asking her husband if she had ever had seizures before, and he shook his head no. He crouched beside her, and held her ankles, to keep her bare feet from drumming on the concrete floor. Suddenly she arched her back, stiffened all over, and then relaxed, sweating, into unconsciousness. For several minutes the kyai kneeled and prayed over her, as she lay apparently senseless. Then he stood, and asked someone to bring water and a cool cloth for the woman, and as her mother bathed her face and neck, the kia sat back in his chair and talked about good mothers from the AI Qur' an and hadith, about how heaven is to be found at the feet of mothers, and how God is forgiving. The kyai declared her cured: the bad spirits were gone, he said, but he said she would be weak and vulnerable for a while and they must mind what he said about keeping her mind busy and helping her to dwell on restful good works. He gave her some water in a plastic water bottle and a paper filled with Arabic characters, and he instructed her family to feed her the water in sips over the next two days and to post the paper above her bed. He asked the family to bring her back in three days, to let him see how she was doing. The woman eventually was helped to sit up, and slowly stand, and leave; she appeared dazed, and uncommunicative, but no longer smiling vacantly or pulling on her clothing, and she left behind the child's toy she had been clutching throughout the introductions and the first part of the interview. The kyai picked it up when they were gone, and called his wife in, instructing her to burn it immediately in their garbage pile. The entire session lasted an hour and fifteen minutes, and the kyai was not paid, although everyone kissed his hand as they took his leave, and the husband apologised, saying he didn’t know how they were ever going to repay him.
Clearly the relationship with a kyai is more patriarchal or patronage rather than purely commercial. The kyai usually will refer mentally ill patients whom they are unable to help to mental hospitals; although few psychiatrist or doctor talk about referrals from dukun. Thus it seems that the emphasis on personal efficacy and individual potency that is key to building the reputation of the dukun makes it harder to admit that they are unable to help a family, and the lack of the kind of long-term ties with a family that often are developed with a kyai makes it easier for families to simply seek out another curer on their own if they do not find a good fit (and thus a cure) from a particular dukun.
Further there are ties with Western psychotherapy in Indonesia, like (in their own way) discussion of causes of illness symptoms, encouraging expression of feelings, providing support, and discussing actions that would promote reconciliation. Less holy than wise, more secular than sacred, the kyai can counsel and help inform the clients about the power of prayer, but his role as a mediator in the production of ritual and rajah amulets is not a mark of individual prowess, but more a function of technical religious knowledge that he has absorbed. Unlike the dukun who works to return order to the disorderly world of supernatural forces, the kyai will treat, what is considered the inner and outer person, as it exists within the social order, and will prescribe that which will return the mental patient or the otherwise-troubled patient or family to the orderly coexistence with their local community. Thus Kyai are seen by their clients as mediators between the ordinary Javanese and Allah, conduits for a kind of sacred power. But unlike dukun, kyai do not appear to try to control that power.