A modest question drove me to write this book: have any Indonesia-born “prophets” founded a “religion,” in a way similar to that which occurred in the Arabian Peninsula with Muhammad (570–632) who revealed Islam? I raise this question for two reasons. Firstly, when I did research for my earlier work, Representing the Enemy: Musaylima in Muslim Literature ( 2010a ), I found that Muhammad was not alone in claiming divine revelation, upon which his leadership in establishing a religious community in Medina was built. In fact, early Islamic literature describes the Arabian Peninsula in the seventh century as much more complex and plural than simply having an Islamic theological dogma maintaining the claim to the sole prophethood of Muhammad. In my previous book, I argue that many fi gures from various Arabian tribes claimed prophethood as well and tried to found “religious communities,” which—unlike Islam , which still fl ourishes today—failed to survive.
In this book I also attempt to address a similar question about prophethood but in a different cultural context and religious tradition, that is of my homeland Indonesia. Furthermore, given the fact that Indonesia today is the largest Muslim country in the world, another question arises: has an indigenous prophet ever challenged the “hegemony” of Islamic orthodoxy ?

Keyword:lia eden, islamic orthodoxy, prophethood