Kyai’s Psychological Resilience in the Perspective of Pesantren: Lesson from Indonesia

  • Azam Syukur Rahmatullah Universitas Muhammadiyah Yogyakarta, Indonesia
Keywords: Psychological Resilience, Kyai, Phenomenology, Mental Block, Toxic


This study focuses on exploring the experiences of the kyai who have founded a pesantren. Founding a pesantren can be interpreted as establishing, raising, and developing a pesantren. These activities, of course, lead to heavy psychological experiences. Although in the end, the kyai still did not step down from the struggle for the pesantren, whatever the challenges and obstacles they faced, their existence in developing resilience was increasingly strengthened. This study is field research using descriptive qualitative. The phenomenological approach is used in this study, which is an approach that pays more attention to the subjective experience of the individual. The setting of this study is the Tahfidzul Qur'an Al-Ma'ruf Pesantren in Kediri, East Java. The primary informant is Kyai Ahmad Fauzan Pujianto as the pesantren’s founder, developer, and caregiver. He has experienced firsthand the events during his time with the pesantren. The results of the study showed several findings, including the types of obstacles to the kyai, among others, receiving death threats, burned down residence, the access road to the house was closed, the recitation study was disbanded, receiving messages of witchcraft (santet), prejudice, and hate speech. The basic principles of the kyai’s resilience in facing these obstacles are as follows: it is mandatory to have the will and ability to annul all personal weaknesses, being free from mental blocking and toxic thoughts, self-function with an accuracy of view, and focusing on self-strength as a human being who is given the potential to develop. The kyai themselves have skills in developing their self-resilience, i.e., by learning ABCS, avoiding thinking traps, detecting icebergs, challenging beliefs, putting in perspective, calming, and focusing. Several factors affect the quality of the kyai’s resilience, including emotion regulation, impulse control, reaching out, a causal analysis. The benefits of this study are as a role model and as a form of self-preparation for (prospective) kyai to strengthen their mentality and self-resilience in facing any form of “tests and obstacles” when establishing, raising, and developing pesantren.


Download data is not yet available.


Achidsti, Sayfa Auliya. “Eksistensi Kiai Dalam Masyarakat.” IBDA: Jurnal Kebudayaan Islam 12, no. 2 (2014): 149–71.

Aziz, Helmi, and Nadri Taja. “Kepemimpinan Kyai Dalam Menjaga Tradisi Pesantren (Studi Deskriptif Di Pondok Pesantren Khalafi Al-Mu’awanah Kabupaten Bandung Barat).” Ta’dib: Jurnal Pendidikan Islam 5, no. 1 (2016): 9–18.

Bashori, Bashori. “Kepemimpinan Transformasional Kyai Pada Lembaga Pendidikan Islam.” Al-Tanzim: Jurnal Manajemen Pendidikan Islam 3, no. 2 (October 29, 2019): 73–84.

Bruinessen, Martin van. “Pesantren and Kitab Kuning: Continuity and Change Ina Tradition of Religious Learning.” Wolfgang Marschall (Ed.), Texts from the Islands: Oral and Written Traditions of Indonesia and the Malay World, 1994, 121–46.

Choi, Jaepil. “A Motivational Theory of Charismatic Leadership: Envisioning, Empathy, and Empowerment.” Journal of Leadership & Organizational Studies 13, no. 1 (September 14, 2006): 24–43.

Dhofier, Zamakhsyari. “The Pesantren Tradition: A Study of the Role of the Kyai in the Maintenance of the Traditional Ideology of Islam in Java.” Australian National University, 1980.

Fauzi, Muhammad Latif. “TRADITIONAL ISLAM IN JAVANESE SOCIETY: The Roles of Kyai and Pesantren in Preserving Islamic Tradition and Negotiating Modernity.” JOURNAL OF INDONESIAN ISLAM 6, no. 1 (June 1, 2012): 125–44.

Fitriani, Mohamad Iwan. “Kepemimpinan Kharismatis-Transformatif Tuan Guru Dalam Perubahan Sosial Masyarakat Sasak-Lombok Melalui Pendidikan.” Al-Tahrir: Jurnal Pemikiran Islam 16, no. 1 (June 24, 2016): 175–95.

Hendriani, Wiwin. Resiliensi Psikologis, Sebuah Pengantar. Jakarta: Jakarta: Prenada Media Group, 2018.

Horikoshi, Hiroko. Kyai Dan Perubahan Sosial. Edited by Umar Basalin and Andi Muarly Sunrawa. Jakarta: Perhimpunan Pengembangan Pesantren dan Masyarakat [P3M], 1987.

Jainudin. “Perjuangan Sang Pecinta Ilmu (Kyai Abdul Mujib Abbas) Analisis Dalam Perspektif Teori Kepribadian Mcclelland.” TASYRI’ JURNAL: TARBIYAH-SYARI’AH ISLAMIYAH 25, no. 2 (2018): 1–20.

Machida, Moe, and John Schaubroeck. “The Role of Self-Efficacy Beliefs in Leader Development.” Journal of Leadership & Organizational Studies 18, no. 4 (November 20, 2011): 459–68.

Muttaqin, Imron. “Types and Characteristics of Kyai Leadership Within Pesantren.” Dinamika Ilmu 20, no. 1 (June 15, 2020): 165–74.

Nasution, Sri Mulyani. Resiliensi Daya Pegas Menghadapi Trauma Kehidupan. 1 cetakan. Medan: Medan: USU Press, 2011.

Nurdin, Adnil Edwin. Tumbuh Kembang Perilaku Manusia. Jakarta: Jakarta: Penerbit Buku Kedokteran EGC, 2011.

Pattinson, Emily, and Stewart Cotterill. “Barriers and Facilitators to Overcoming Mentalblock in Springboard and Highboard Diving.” Journal of Qualitative Research in Sports Studies 11, no. 1 (2017): 1–14.

Pramono, Didi. “The Authority of Kyai Toward the Santri: A Review of Gender Construction at Pondok Pesantren.” KOMUNITAS: International Journal of Indonesian Society and Culture 10, no. 1 (September 4, 2018): 92–100.

Reich, John W., Alex J. Zautra, and John Stuart Hall. Handbook of Adult Resilience. New York: New York: Guiford Publication, 2010.

Reivich, Karen, and Andrew Shatté. The Resilience Factor: 7 Essential Skills for Overcoming Life’s Inevitable Obstacles. New York: New York: Broadway Books, 2002.

Saskara, I Putu Adi, and Ulio. “Peran Komunikasi Keluarga Dalam Mengatasi ‘Toxic Parents’bagi Kesehatan Mental Anak.” Pratama Widya: Jurnal Pendidikan Anak Usia Dini 5, no. 2 (2020): 125–34.

Yusdarmanto, Purwanto. Spiritual Mental Block Breaking: Bersama Allah Pasti Bisa. Jakarta: Jakarta: Prestasi, 2015.

How to Cite
Rahmatullah, A. S. (2021). Kyai’s Psychological Resilience in the Perspective of Pesantren: Lesson from Indonesia. Jurnal Pendidikan Islam, 10(2), 235-254.