Leaders of the world’s largest Islamic organization, Indonesia’s Nahdlatul Ulama (NU), established the Center for Shared Civilizational Values (“CSCV”) to preserve and strengthen a rules-based international order founded upon universal ethics and humanitarian values.

The Center works with a group of closely affiliated organizations including Nahdlatul Ulama; Gerakan Pemuda Ansor, the NU’s 8-million-member young adults movement; Bayt ar-Rahmah, which helps coordinate the global expansion of NU operations; LibForAll Foundation; and the Institute for Humanitarian Islam.

These organizations seek to restore rahmah (universal love and compassion) to its rightful place as the primary message of Islam by addressing obsolete and problematic elements within Islamic orthodoxy that lend themselves to tyranny, while positioning these efforts within a much broader initiative to reject any and all forms of tyranny, and foster the emergence of a global civilization endowed with noble character. Their efforts have been extensively cited by sponsors of an international campaign to award the Nobel Peace Prize to Nahdlatul Ulama.

“A worthy model for the world to emulate”

~ Nobel Laureate H.E. José Ramos-Horta

“The youth wing of Nahdlatul Ulama, an Indonesian Islamic group, is pressing governments around the world to bring Islamic law into line with 21st-century norms.”

~ New York Times

“Humanitarian Islam… provides a model for an Islam that is accepting of differences, that profoundly honors nature, and that cooperates with the best of non-Islamic cultures. It is an Islam that does not create enemies, that is self-assured but not aggressive, that lets virtue speak for itself.”

~ Huffington Post

In recent years, Humanitarian Islam leaders — including Kyai Haji Yahya Cholil Staquf, General Chairman of the Nahdlatul Ulama Executive Board — have drafted a series of historic declarations that were adopted by Nahdlatul Ulama and/or Gerakan Pemuda Ansor. These declarations are part of a long-term, systematic and institutional effort to reform obsolete tenets of Islamic orthodoxy. NU leaders have also developed — and begun to operationalize — a global strategy to reconcile Islamic teachings with the reality of contemporary civilization, whose context and conditions differ significantly from those in which classical Islamic law emerged.

As a result of these pioneering efforts, a large body of Sunni Muslim authorities are now engaged in a wide-ranging, concerted and explicit project of theological reform for the first time since the late Middle Ages.

“Nahdlatul Ulama is now poised to export its collective wisdom and experience throughout the world, for the benefit of humanity.”

~ Al-Ahram (Egypt)

“If it can work in Indonesia, why not in the rest of the world?”

~ Washington Post

“From Indonesia, a Muslim Challenge to the Ideology of the Islamic State”

~ New York Times

“‘I don’t see any other Muslim leaders coming to Europe, standing up like a tower and saying, ‘Look, we are prepared to take this on.’ Terrorism expert Magnus Ranstorp says these Indonesian Muslim leaders are breaking new ground by proposing to make changes to Islamic law to better fit the modern era.”



NU Centennial


Islamic Jurisprudence for a Global Civilization

CNN Report


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“The Nahdlatul Ulama calls upon people of goodwill of every faith and nation to join in building a global consensus not to politicize Islam, and to marginalize those who would exploit Islam in such a way as to harm others.”

Nahdlatul Ulama Declaration

Media Analysis


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“If Muslims do not address the key tenets of Islamic orthodoxy that authorize and explicitly enjoin such violence, anyone—at any time—may harness the orthodox teachings of Islam to defy what they claim to be the illegitimate laws and authority of an infidel state and butcher their fellow citizens, regardless of whether they live in the Islamic world or the West.”

Declaration on Humanitarian Islam




The Nusantara Statement conveys the essence of the historic Nusantara Manifesto, through which Gerakan Pemuda Ansor and Bayt ar-Rahmah have officially launched a process of systematically recontextualizing (i.e., reforming) obsolete and problematic tenets within Islamic orthodoxy.

Second Global Unity Forum

This reform process has attracted the attention and support of major institutions across the globe, which have endorsed the Humanitarian Islam movement and its efforts to preserve and strengthen a rules-based international order founded upon universal ethics and humanitarian values. These allies include the World Evangelical Alliance (WEA) — representing over 600 million Evangelical Protestants in 140 countries worldwide — whose leaders view Humanitarian Islam as essential to resolving “the Muslim-Christian clash of civilizations, which started almost 1,500 years ago.”

The Center for Shared Civilizational Values and Humanitarian Islam movement have direct access to the world’s largest political network — Centrist Democrat International/European People’s Party (CDI/EPP) — via Indonesia’s largest Islamic political party, PKB, which was founded by senior NU leaders including H.E. Kyai Haji Abdurrahman Wahid (1940 – 2009) and Kyai Haji A. Mustofa Bisri.

Working closely with spiritual leaders of Nahdlatul Ulama and with Humanitarian Islam/CSCV co-founder C. Holland Taylor, Centrist Democrat International has adopted four resolutions that endorse Humanitarian Islam’s theological framework; affirm that “Western humanism, Christian democracy and Humanitarian Islam are kindred traditions”; call for “a 21st century alliance to promote a rules-based international order founded upon universal ethics and humanitarian values”; and recognize that “the foundational texts of the Humanitarian Islam movement represent a comprehensive affirmation of these universal values from within the Islamic tradition, including the principle of rahmah (universal love and compassion).”

Centrist Democrat International Resolutions

“Indonesia has the largest Muslim population in the world, yet the country and its forms of Islam, especially Humanitarian Islam, are too little known. This is especially tragic since this may be the most important movement in the Islamic world, and it is engaged in active alliance with Christians and others.”

~ Paul Marshall, Wilson Distinguished Professor of Religious Freedom at Baylor University and senior fellow at the Religious Freedom Institute and the Hudson Institute

“I regard the work of Humanitarian Islam and the Movement for Shared Civilizational Values as one of the most pathbreaking and important developments in world politics and cross-civilizational ethics in our generation. No event that I know of is more timely, urgent, or well conceived.”

~ Robert Hefner, Professor of Anthropology and International Relations at Boston University and President of the American Institute for Indonesian Studies