At that time the house was burning down, the road full of rocks and corpses, I did not know what was happening, what I knew was a war that would kill me and my parents. At that time my age was only 6 years old who could only cry and ask questions what actually is happening. Until I arrived in my village and did not want to go back again to Poso, Central Sulawesi.
I am Adam Sudarto from a farming family. I was born in South Sulawesi, but my parents had moved long ago to Poso, Central Sulawesi. After my birth, my parents bought me to anywhere they went, so I was brought up to Poso and grew up there until the incident of religious war happened. I just realized it was a war between religions that occurred in 1999, which I only learned when I grew up. At the time I was 6 years old only, the peak of the war happened there. That time was tolerant for women and children to get out from Poso, but adult men should not go out to fight for their religion, including my father. Finally Mama and I separated from Papa at the port that would take us out from Poso.
Since arriving in South Sulawesi, I have heard many stories from my mother that the incident was a war between Christian and Islam so I finally hated and feared making friends with Christians. After 6 months later my father returned to our place with safe from the war, and then he said that nothing could be saved in Poso, including houses and gardens that had been burned down. Then my hatred became more apparent to a Christian at that time.
Shortly after this incident my parents returned to Poso to start living again by rearranging the ravaged land, but I remained in South Sulawesi to attend school until I was 15 years old which I was in high school that time. And due to my longing to my parents, I went to Poso to continue my education there which I believed this will heal my trauma by seeing my parents.
In the new school, I chose my friends and could adapt easily and participated in various school organizations until finally I got into the Student Council. I participated various activities to add to my experience and my knowledge about Poso until finally I got to know 12 Peace Values through activities that represents the Student Council in Tentena, Poso which organized by Peace Generation Bali. Pak Andi, the name I called him, I learned about being proud of myself and no suspicion, no prejudice, so I used to apologize, made me little by little close to Christians friends. And during the 3 day activities I got to know a lot of Christian friends. Apparently they had the same thought with me who was afraid of Muslims, so that made me realize that we were only trapped by fear.
When I grew up, the word of terrorist, the sound of gunfire and bombs reminded me of the incident when I was a child, the severity of terrorism was guerrilla in agricultural areas which the road passed through my parents’ garden, until one day my Papa was arrested by the police because my Papa was accused of being a liaison with the terrorist and those who fund them. My hatred to the police who accused my Papa without evidence made me distrust the police who were handling the terrorists in Poso. Is that just a scenario to get the money?, I wondered.
The incident really hit me and also asked me whether my Papa was really a terrorist, I tried to dig up as much information as possible, until finally I arrived in Bandung in the Board Game For Peace (BGFP) Training which reminded me again about the figure of Mr. Andi who taught me “12 Peace Values” are now discussed again at the BGFP training until at one session at that time on the telephone with Mr. Ali Imron whose name is familiar in my head who apparently also had been in Poso during the religious war. It was my opportunity to ask many questions to him. He said that the Poso incident in 1999 was indeed a purely religious war that was spearheaded by a provocateur, but the recent Poso terrorist incident that occurred was not part of him but which was spearheaded by politics, instantly this was making me silent and making my heart relieved of all information from Ali Imron.
I reopened 12 Peace Values in which I felt suitable for me to internalize in me and make me able to accept all the tragedies that have happened to me and believed that war occurs because there are interests and provocations in it, and people who are provoked will be affected when that person does not know the meaning of peace, I am sure 12 values of peace can counter somebody else so that they will not be affected by provocations as I felt at the time and now I feel I can hardly conflict with others when I practice 12 values of peace. The way how I communicate and respond to problems and solve problems that I got from 12 Peace Values completely changed my life, then I now spread to many of my business partners and my best friends in solving problems at work/life.
Writer: Adam, Coordinator of PeaceGen Central Sulawesi Chapter
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