Religious leaders take part in the Festival Kebhinekaan opening event at Griya Gus Dur in Jakarta on Thursday. (JG Photo/Nur Yasmin)

'Festival Kebhinekaan': Religious Tolerance in Millennial-Friendly Packaging


FEBRUARY 20, 2020

Jakarta. Festival Kebhinekaan, an annual festival showing off the diversity of Indonesia, kicks off in Jakarta on Friday and will run until Sunday, presenting a lineup of events designed to promote religious tolerance to millennials.

This is the third edition of the festival and will happen in three locations in Jakarta – Griya Gus Dur, Wisma Rahmat and Taman Suropati. All events are free of charge.


The initiator of the event, Ira Lathief from Khairiyah Indonesia, said, "We want to have light-hearted discussions on religious tolerance that millennials can relate to. We'll have film screenings, discussions with young religious leaders and day tours to important religious sites in Jakarta." 

"My day job is working as a tour guide. I've taken many tourists to religious sites," Ira said.

The festival will also feature meditation and yoga sessions, a peace walk and a photo exhibition.

On Friday, there will be the Public Transportation for People With Disabilities tour, where participants ride trains and buses around the capital to observe the facilities, or lack thereof, for disabled people.

The Bhineka tour on Saturday will take a group on a trip from the Immanuel Church to an Indian Hare Krishna Temple. Another one on Sunday will visit a Sikh Temple, a Vihara and other temples in the city.

Discussions during the festival will feature Shiites, Ahmadis, Jehovah's Witnesses, Jews, Buddhists, Muslims, Christians, Catholics, Hindus and Confucians all on the same table. 

"We want to provide a space where young people of different religions can interact with each other and get to know one another," Ira said.

Hadassah Indonesia, a nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting religious tolerance, will be holding a photo exhibition called "The Face of Muslim in China" throughout the festival.

The full schedule of the festival is available on its website.