MuslimCreed|In the 14th century in the Java region, there were nine famous Islamic preachers know as Wali Songo. The nine guardians lived in several important areas around the north coast of Java.
The da’wah strategies used by Wali Songo varied greatly, depending on the region and the conditions of the people. Most of these Islamic propagators adapt flexibly so that the delivery of Islam is accepted by the community. The naming of Wali Songo is often attached to the area of his da’wah.
As a result, most people do not know the real names of each guardian. The names of the Wali Songo The following are the nine Wali Songo figures, their real names, strategies, and areas for spreading their da’wah, as written by Agus Sunyoto in the book Atlas Wali Songo (2016):
1. Sunan Gresik
Sunan Gresik or Maulana Malik Ibrahim is considered to be the first person to spread Islam in Java. He first came to Sembolo village, now Laren village in Manyar sub–district, 9 kilometers north of Gresik city. His da’wah strategy started from trade, followed by a political approach. Sunan Gresik then established a relationship with the ruler at that time. Sunan Grasik also established a pesantren and a mosque to spread Islam. The existence of Sunan Gresik has become a controversy. So far, there is a difference between people’s views and historical facts. As reported by NU Online, Sunan Gresik’s existence is not recognized academically, but continues to develop as a public trust.
2. Sunan Ampel
Sunan Ampel’s real name is Raden Rahmat. Sunan Ampel was born in 1401. His da’wah area is around Surabaya. He also owns the Ampeldenta Islamic boarding school which is located in the Denta area, Surabaya. His famous da’wah strategy is to educate dai or da’wah interpreters. Then, he married many preachers to the sons and daughters of the subordinate rulers of Majapahit.
3. Sunan Kudus
Sunan Kudus real name is Ja’far Sadiq, he was born in 1400. His da’wah area is in Kudus, Central Java. Sunan Kudus is famous for being firm in upholding the teachings of Islamic law. In his time, he was known as the executor of Ki Ageng Pengging and Sheikh Siti Jenar. The da’wah strategy used by Sunan Kudus to spread Islam is to approach the community through their needs. He taught carpentry tools, gold crafts, making heirloom kris, and so on.
4. Sunan Giri
Sunan Giri’s real name is Muhammad Ainul Yakin, he was born in 1442. His parents are Sheikh Maulana Ishaq with Dewi Sekardadu, the daughter of Menak Sembuyu who was a ruler of the Balambangan region at the end of the Majapahit kingdom. Sunan Giri is known as a king as well as a holy teacher. He played an important role in the development of da’wah in the archipelago. His famous da’wah strategy is to use power, commerce, and education. With this da’wah method, Sunan Giri’s influence reached the areas of Banjar, Martapura, Pasir, Kutai, to Nusa Tenggara and Maluku. Also read: History of the Collapse of the Islamic Mataram Sultanate & List of Kings.
5. Sunan Gunung Jati
Sunan Gunung Jati has a real name Syarif Hidayatullah. He was born in 1448 in Cairo, Egypt. In Egypt, he was the son of Sultan Hud and had been a prince for the successor to the king of Egypt, succeeding his father, but he refused and decided to spread the teachings of Islam with his mother in Java. The da’wah strategy carried out by Sunan Gunung Jati is to strengthen political position. He established relationships with influential figures in Cirebon, Banten, and Demak to streamline his da’wah.
6. Sunan Kalijaga
Sunan Kalijaga or Raden Said was born in 1450 in Tuban. His father was Tumenggung Wilatikta, the Regent of Tuban. Sunan Kalijaga’s da’wah strategy is very well known through art and culture. He is good at performing, creating puppet forms, and carangan plays.
7. Sunan Muria
Sunan Muria As the son of Sunan Kalijaga, Sunan Muria whose real name is Raden Umar Said or Raden Said inherited his father’s artistic blood. He was born in 1450 and is considered the youngest sunan among the other Wali Songo. In spreading Islam, Sunan Muria preserved the art of gamelan and puppets as a means of da’wah. He composed several songs and songs to practice Islamic teachings.
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8. Sunan Bonang
Sunan Bonang was born in 1465 and his real name is Raden Maulana Makdum Ibrahim. He is the son of Sunan Ampel with Nyai Ageng Manila. Sunan Bonang’s nickname comes from the name of a village in Rembang district, namely Bonang village. Sunan Bonang is known to be very good at jurisprudence, ushuluddin, Sufism, art, literature, architecture, and so on. His da’wah area is the Kediri area. There, he taught Islam through wayang, tembang, and Sufistic literature. The famous literary work composed by Sunan Bonang is Suluk Wujil.
9. Sunan Drajat
Sunan Drajat’s real name is Raden Qasim or Syarifuddin. He was born in 1470 and was the youngest son of Sunan Ampel with Nyai Ageng Manila. His da’wah area is in Paciran, Lamongan. His da’wah strategy is famous for moral education to the community. In Paciran, Sunan Drajat educates the public to pay attention to the poor. He upholds the welfare of the people. In addition, Sunan Drajat is also known for teaching the technique of making houses and stretchers.
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