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Western media and Western policy makers sometimes perceive traditional Islamic schools throughout the Islamic world as a source of radicalism. The history of pesantren in Indonesia shows that this is not only mistaken but also a perspective that leads the West away from a potential ally in the efforts to create a world of peaceful coexistence. The mystical traditions of pesantren form a strong basis from which most Indonesians have eschewed radical Islamism. These traditions are rooted in thedoi:10.15642/jiis.2008.2.1.1-15 fatcat:xh5p4hhmh5ce5jhi4hjcno42dq