Realizing a New Spiritualism: Development of Religious Authority during the COVID-19 Pandemic through Ngaji Online

Sholahuddin Al Ayubi, Muhamad Alif, Ursa Agniya, Hafidz Taqiyuddin, Khaira Nazla Al Naquib


Religious activities in Indonesia have shifted from offline to online due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The ngaji, or recitation previously performed directly at mosques or Islamic boarding schools, is now online. This research aims to determine how Indonesian kiai (clerics) use social media to increase their religious authority through online recitations. This study uses a qualitative approach by carefully examining virtual ethnographic techniques known as Netnography on some kiai who conduct online recitations on various social media platforms, including YouTube. The research findings indicate that internet recitation is now helpful for kiai to spread their religious messages. Kiai can reach a wider audience, especially the younger generation, who are increasingly active in social media by using sites like YouTube. Although kiai does not abandon the conventional approach, it excitingly presents ngaji content, using the latest content creation technology, conducting active communication with his followers, and reciting the ngaji online as a new media and spiritualism. This study highlights how ngaji online contributed to developing religious authority in Indonesia during the COVID-19 epidemic. This study also emphasizes the importance of conveying religious teachings online clearly and effectively. This study will broaden the knowledge of how religious education has changed in the digital age and how social media can be used in Indonesia to increase the religious authority's role.


Keywords: Ngaji Online, recitation, kiai, religious authority, new spiritual online media.



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