Fervor really shakes and affects us but lack clear definitions, like cluster of nebula in the distant sky. Soekarno was fervor. He could produce elegant concepts but no formulas. He was a person who full of ideas yet he left us no programs to do.
It’s not surprising thirty eight years after his death, there are hundreds of people who look up to him in admiration. In the same time, only small amount of people know and grasp political, social and economic ideas he left behind. Soekarno was not Marx or Lenin. He wasn’t the one to forge new ideology. Soekarnoism? It can impress us just as the nebula in the distant sky, the further away it is the more it impresses.
For there are times when people live a passion of glory, a passion of wealth.Soekarno came from the time when a passion of glory was seen to be more important than the ambition for wealth. The fervor Soekarno had in his heart seemed to come from the Wayang stories about a group of people named Ksatrya who were prepared to die to fulfill some vows, just like King Arthur’s knights. These Ksatrya were basically from a privileged class. They were accustomed to a life guaranteed financially through the blessing of taxes and hard work of merchants and farmers. They can impress and move anyone they want. Moreover who doesn’t admire a legendary figure who seems no need of money? Even now we impresses by someone like James Bond. It would be a shock if in one of the scenes Bond run out of money, wouldn’t it?
In Soekarno time, Indonesia still had the ideals of Ksatrya who owns no credit card, Jaguar and Hugo Boss aftershave. Indonesia still felt as an aim, a reason to fight, a cause. Now, since time changes we feel that we have lost something. But, what to do? This current time is no longer in its infancy. Instead of glory, people now are busy looking for wealth. Indonesia became a place with ambitions and anxiety. We no longer have the fervor from the past.
The fate of fervor, something that is beautiful, is unforgettable but no longer able to move us.— May 17, 2008