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By: Rika Iffati Farihah

In the part of conclusion of her article entitled “The Main Points of Lecture on the Understanding Among Madzahib (Islamic Schools of Thoughts) and the Tolerance Among Them’” (1962), Khoiriyah Hasyim wrote: : “tasamuh” (tolerance) only can happen with the fullness of knowledge. 

The consciousness that knowledge is the key of peaceful life with the full of tolerance (tasamuh) was reflected clearly in the life journey of the second children of KH. Hasyim Asyari. It can be said that along her life, Khoiriyah Hasyim devoted her life for education, especially education for her people, namely their fellow women. Khoiriyah Hasyim had established the first school for girls in Mecca. In her homeland, she led madrasah (Islamic school) and boarding school (pesantren) which accept more numbers of female students, while remained active in organization. Khairiyah Hasyim was recorded as the chairperson of Fatayat NU (1958-1962) and member of Great Executive Board of Nahdhatul Ulama (1960-ies). 

The great woman was born in 1906 in Jombang. As the great women before her such as Kartini, Khoiriyah Hasyim was lucky to be born in the noble and educated family. Education was a not common thing given to women at that time. Since her childhood, she obtained direct education from her father, Hadratus Syaikh KH. Hasyim Asy’ari. The potency of her science was also honed because of surrounded by the knowledgeable persons. Her first husband,  KH. Maksum Ali is an author of a legendary book of sharaf “al-Amtsilat al-Tashrifiyyah” ; while her second husband KH. Muhaimin Lasem was an Indonesian Ulama who lived and taught in Mecca. 

It is no doubt that Khoiriyah become a women with the qualified knowledge. With the provision of her knowledge, she can attend and participate in the bahts al-masail forum which usually were dominated by men. In another occasion, she also proudly rejected to teach the book of “’Uquud al-Lujjayn”; a book which talk about the relation of husband and wife and rights and responsibility among them, because according to Khoiriyah tends to take position on one side, because the author of the book was a man. She thought that there should be such similar book which be written by women. 

The religious point of view from the women perspective was very rare at that time. One of them because women did not obtain opportunities to access the education. This situation was well understood by Khoriyah. Therefore, when she lived in Mecca, Khoiriyah Hasyim initiated to established school for girls. She couldn’t bear to see women there who were not able to go to school. The Madrasah Kuttabul Banat which she established was a first school for women in Mecca.  Initially, the establishment of the school for girls faced many threaten, especially from the people who perceived that women were not appropriated to obtain education. Luckily, Khoiriyah Hasyim is not a daunted and quitter personality. The school was success to continue when Khoiriyah lived there. But after her husband passed away, in 1952 Khoiriyah decided to come back to Indonesia to fulfill the request of Soekarno, The President of Indonesia at that time. 

When arrived in her homeland, Khoiriyah led again the Pondok (boarding school) and Madrasah,  which as long as her stay in Mecca the pesantren were managed by her first daughter and her daughter’s husband. While her healthy was getting worse in the early 1970th, her second daughter who lived in Malang before, came back to help. 

The two pesantren, both Pondok Pesantren Salafiyah Syafi’iyah Seblak which are managed by the sons and daughters of Jamilah as well as Pondok Pesantren Salafiyah al-Mahfudz which were managed by the sons and daughter of Abidah accepts more numbers of female students up to now, to continue the care of importance of education for women. Those institutions also continues the traditions of women leadership that had been started since the era of Khoriyah Hasyim. The women  in the both boarding schools  were not only play their role behind the curtain or manage the domestic matters. The Director of the Madrasah in Khoriyah Hasyim Foundation is a woman, Nur Laili Rahmah.  The manager of the boarding school is also a woman, Mahshunah Faruq. Another granddaughter of  Khoiriyah, Lily Zakiah Munir established CEPDES (Center for Pesantren and Democracy). 

It looks like one of one the greatest heritage of Khoiriyah Hasyim in giving the example for the next generation, inspired the women in the two pesantrens that with the provision of knowledge, whoever men or women are worthy to contribute in the public sphere.{}  


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