Novel: Kembara Rindu by Habiburrahman El-Shirazy

The Longing Trip is the first novel in the soul-building trilogy, which tells about the world of Santri. The story focuses on two things: wandering and longing. Wandering is oriented towards the future, whereas longing is oriented towards the past. These two things color the storyline in this novel, thus making it seem as if the reader is encouraged to have the courage to look to the future while at the same time making the past a spirit of struggle. Two things that seem different but are essentially one, namely training oneself in order to improve abilities, knowledge, and expertise, The difference lies in the character's tendency to interpret life.

Travel is a necessity for humans. In this novel, the character Ridho is described as having to leave his hometown to study at a pesantren. This move is a symbol of the seriousness of learning and is the first test in starting an adventure. Setting intentions and strengthening mentally along the way to the place of study The urgency of the wandering is written in one stanza paragraph, which makes the arrow and bow a symbol.


Anak panah kalau tidak dilepas dari busurnya, tidak akan pernah sampai pada sasarannya. Demikian juga manusia, jika tidak berani merantau untuk mencari ilmu maka dia tidak akan meraih kegemilangannya. Kamu harus belajar, jauh, merantau, agar banyak pengalaman.


Ridho's journey to the Islamic boarding school is based on the will of his great-grandfather. During his lifetime, his great-grandfather advised his children and grandchildren to study at Islamic boarding schools so that later they could prosper the mosque he founded. This was also confirmed by the message of his late mother, who told him to be a pious child and not contradict the advice of her grandparents. His grandfather forced him to study at an Islamic boarding school and chose a teacher for him, Kiai Munawir Abdul Jalil from Sidawangi. Sincere and full of love is the character of Kiai Munawir, who is the reason for his grandfather's reference.


Ridho gained extraordinary experience both while still studying and in the service process. These experiences include the leadership of a scholar who is respected by many groups, as well as the manners and etiquette of a scholar. Apart from that, while serving, Ridho was guided and taught directly how to walk toward Allah. Ridho's attention was also paid to Kiai Munawir's messages in every sermon. Among these messages about the nature of life as a nomad.


Kita seperti orang bepergian di dunia ini, orang yang mengembara. Dunia ini bukan tujuan kita. Tujuan kita adalah Allah. Kita harus memiliki rasa rindu yang mendalam kepada Allah. Dan Allah akan membalas dengan kehangatan rindu dan ridha-Nya yang tiada bandingannya.


The author inserts a message to the reader through the pearls of Kiai Munawir'r's message. In addition to having the courage to wander, a learner must have the will to serve, the desire to returhome,me, and the longing to do good deeds. Two things that can have different meanings in the context of space and time ares message. In addition to having the courage to wander, a learner must have the will to serve, the desire to return home and the longing to do good deeds. Two things that can have different meanings in the context of space and time. Courage in wandering must be accompanied by a longing to go home. Going home or serving is the main goal in the process of wandering while learning.


Longing is often forgotten by a learner. Basically, the longing or passion to serve is what causes the courage to wander away from home. In this novel, longing is not only described by the main character Ridho but also by other characters who miss Ridho. The longing is referred to as the effect of Ridho's usefulness as a santri figure who serves wholeheartedly and whose presence is felt not only in the pesantren environment but in his family and community environments. Not only how to grow longing within, but how to create longing at every step of the way


There are three kinds of longing conveyed in this novel. The main character's longing for his family in completing his grandfather's will. The longing of friends and teachers for the dedication and devotion of the main character while studying at the Islamic boarding school And the longing of the surrounding community for the benefit of a santri after graduating from the Islamic boarding school. Longing is both the beginning and the end of the learning process, as well as the spirit of being serious about learning. Without longing, students will play in their wanderings aimlessly and will lose their way. The message was conveyed by the author through the figure of Kiai Munawir.

Santri-santriku dalam pengembaraan mengarungi kehidupan dunia ini, jadilah kalian orang-orang yang penuh rindu. Orang-orang yang rindu pulang. Jadilah seperti orang yang mengembara dan sangat rindu untuk segera pulang bertemu keluarga. Orang yang didera rindu untuk segera pulang, tentu berbeda dengam orang yang tidak merasa rindu, meskipun sama-sama bepergian. Orang yang didera rasa rindu, tidak akan membuang-buang waktunya di jalan, ia ingin cepat-cepat sampai rumah.


This story takes place in Lampung, with all its local wisdom. Readers are invited to explore this area with its beautiful scenery and cool air. Lush coffee plantations and deserted roads are a sight that complements the uniqueness of Lampung's typical stilt houses. In addition, the atmosphere of the Islamic boarding school and rituals related to the school are presented by the author to bring the world of the Islamic boarding school closer to its readers. The Sidawangi Islamic boarding school owned by Kiai Munawir in Cirebon, the Islamic boarding school owned by the Gus Najib family, and the Islamic boarding school where Syifa, Ridho's cousin, studied. Not forgetting that the musholla in his village was getting busier, as a forerunner to Ridho establishing a pesantren.


This novel raises the issue of class conflict. Ridho's family is seen as the lower class who are trying to claim their rights, while the family of Syifa's stepmother is considered the upper class who control Syifa's father's property. Syifa was forced to drop out of school because both of her parents died, and she became the burden of her family's life. His young sister and grandmother, who had taken care of him since childhood, became his dependents. To make a living, Syifa sells fried foods and drinks around where she lives.


Syifa's life support increased with the departure of her cousin, who left to pray because her grandfather and mother had entrusted her. Syifa has a new assignment to look after Ridho's grandparents. Ridho lives his life as a student at the Darul Falah Islamic Boarding School, Sidawangi. Without adequate means of communication, Ridho was not aware of his presence among the much-awaited family. He maintained his grandfather's mandate not to return home before being ordered by Kiai Munawir.


Real life came when Ridho was ordered by Kiai Munawir to return home. As well as accompanying the Kiai's daughter in completing her studies in Lampung. After completing his duties, Ridho immediately returned home and became the backbone of the family. Together with his cousin, Syifa, Ridho struggles to improve the family's economy. Her toughness is tested when she fights for Syifa's rights with her stepfamily. Many distractions and temptations while fighting for the rights of his cousin. His knowledge and firmness during the pesantren are at stake.


This novel provides motivation as well as social criticism of Indonesian society. The spirit of learning or traveling must always be nurtured to match the longing for service. Travel and devotion are like two sides of the same coin that cannot be separated from each other. Choosing to wander means being ready to go home and serve. Without wandering, longing will never exist. And without devotion, wandering will not be meaningful.


The author in the story seems to criticize while at the same time emphasizing Indonesian students who are traveling far away to foreign countries. Especially students who are funded by the government in order to build the nation. The longing to go home must always be nurtured so that it continues to blossom. The culmination of the journey is returning to his hometown in the context of dedication. Building the homeland and the nation.


Facilities provided by the state are debts that must be paid. The welfare and prosperity of the community are indicators of this success. Devotion is endless, just like wandering, which will never end. However, returning home and serving the country is the answer to an odyssey that needs to be realized. Social justice for all the people of Indonesia.

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