Friday, August 30, 2013

Anging Mammiri : The Breezy Wind of Makassar City

Anging mammiri kupasang
(breezy wind, send away my greeting)
Pitujui tontonganna
(convey up to her window)
Tusarroa takkaluppa
(to the one who have been forgotten)

E alue, namangngu’rangi
(o dear, she had remembered)
Tutenayya, tutenayya pa’risi’na
(the one who didn't have, the one who didn't have a pain)

Battumi anging mammiri
(the breezy wind had come)
Anging ngerang dinging dinging
(winds that bringing coolness)
Namalantang saribuku
(entered into my heart)

E alue, mangerang nakku
(o dear, she had remembered me)
Nalo’lorang, nalo’lorang je’ne mata
(dripping, dripping her tears)

The words above came from a song known as Anging Mammiri (The Breezy Wind). This Makassarese song can't be seperated from Makassar City, because the Indonesian people call it The City of Anging Mammiri.
Makassar City, sometimes spelled Macassar or Mangkasar, from 1971 to 1999, was named as Ujung Pandang or Jumpandang, the provincial capital of South Sulawesi, Indonesia and the larger city in Sulawesi Island. After the reformation-era, the city regained its original name, Makassar. The city located on the southwest coast of the island of Sulawesi, facing the Makassar Strait.

Makassar, derived from the word "akkassara" which means "something that couldn't be seen, bacome able to be seen". This word can't be separated from folk legends about Mangkubumi Kingdom of Gowa, who also reigned as King of Tallo named "I Malingkaan Daeng Mayonri Karaeng Matoayya", uncle of Sultan Alauddin (the 14-th King of Gowa) who was the grandfather of Sultan Hasanuddin (the 16-th King of Gowa). The story about the legend can be found in here.

Beginning in the sixteenth century, Makassar was the dominant trading center of eastern Indonesia, and soon became one of the largest cities in island Southeast Asia. The Makassarese kings maintained a policy of free trade, insisting on the right of any visitor to do business in the city, and rejecting the attempts of the Dutch to establish a monopoly over the city. But finally, in the early 17th century, The Dutch replaced the Portuguese as colonial masters in 1667, date that marks the beginning of the decline of Makassar. Their first objective was to create a hegemony over the spice trade and their first move was to capture the fort of Makassar, which they rebuilt and renamed Fort Rotterdam. From this base they managed to destroy the strongholds of the Sultan of Gowa who was then forced to live on the outskirts of Makassar. Following the Java War (1825–1830), Prince Diponegoro was exiled to Fort Rotterdam until his death in 1855.

During the colonial era, the city was famous for being the namesake of Makassar oil, which it exported in great quantity. Makassar ebony is a warm black hue, streaked with tan or brown tones, and highly prized for use in making fine cabinetry and veneers.

Nowadays, as the largest city in Sulawesi Island and Eastern Indonesia, the city's economy depends highly on service sectors with approximately 70% from total share. Restaurant and hotel service are the largest contributor (29.14%), followed by transportation and communication (14.86%), trading (14.86), finance (10.58%). Industry follows behind service with 21.34%.

The city airport is Hasanuddin International Airport which is actually located outside the Makassar city administration area. It is formally located in the regency of Maros. In addition to "becak" and "pete-pete", the city has government-run bus system, and taxis. Makassar has a public transportation system called 'pete-pete'. A pete-pete (known elsewhere in Indonesia as angkot) is a mini-bus that has been modified to carry passengers. The route of Makassar's pete-petes is denoted by the letter on the windshield. Makassar is famous for their "becak" (pedicab) which is smaller than the "becak" in the island of Java. In Makassar, people who drive pedicab are called Daeng.
The city is southern Sulawesi's primary port, with regular domestic and international shipping connections. It is nationally famous as an important port of call for the pinisi boats, sailing ships which are among the last in use for regular long-distance trade.

Makassar is home to several prominent landmarks including the 16th century Dutch fort Fort Rotterdam, Trans Studio Makassar—the third largest indoor theme park in the world and the Karebosi Link—the first underground shopping center in Indonesia and the floating mosque located right on the Losari Beach.

Makassar has several famous traditional foods. The most famous is Coto Makassar. It is a stew made from the mixture of nuts and spices with beef parts which include beef brain, tongue and intestine. Konro rib dish is also popular traditional food in Makassar. Both Coto Makassar and Konro are usually eaten with Burasa, a glutinous rice with coconut milk and sauted coconut granule.

In addition, Makassar is the home of Pisang Epe (pressed banana), as well as Pisang Ijo (green banana). Pisang Epe is a banana which is pressed, grilled, and covered with palm sugar sauce and sometimes eaten with Durian. Many street vendors sell Pisang Epe, especially around the area of Losari beach. Pisang Ijo is a banana covered with green colored flours, coconut milk, and syrup. Pisang Ijo is sometimes served iced, and often eaten on Ramadan.

In addition, Makassar attractions are worth visiting, such as Losari Beach, Akkarena Beach, Barombong Beach, snorkeling spots on the island of Lae-lae and mosques has a unique architecture, those are Masjid Al-Markaz and the floating mosque Amirul Mukminin dedicated to Tuanta' Salamaka.

So, why waiting ? Don't be hesitate, just take a visit to the City of Anging Mammiri...

Reference :

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Gandrang Bulo : Satire in a Folk Art

Battu rate ma' ri bulang...
ma' rencong-rencong, ma' rencong-rencong....
ma ku ta'nang ri bintoeng.....
apa kananna attudendang baule?...
"Bunting lompo jako sallang!"...

I just arrived from the moon ...
I was dancing and dancing ...
I asked the stars ...
do you know what their answer pal? ...
"You might have a great wedding!" ...
Words above are a piece of Makassarese song, which sung while dancing, it is known as Gandrang Bulo dancing. This dance is Makassar folk art that combines elements of music, dance and funny critical dialogue,with dynamic motion and often performed in major events both locally or nationally and even internationally. This traditional dance is as diverse atmosphere timeless with modern dance. Often played at events such as weddings, the inauguration of an event, then taking part in the arts festival.

This dancing is very popular, played by several players, generally 14 to 18 dancers, with a gesture that made ​​the audience laugh. Accompanied by the beating of bamboo in songs pitched satire. Dialogue that came out of the dancers' contains allusions realities of everyday life. Gandrang Bulo which is a series of dances in it, is also inseparable from the emergence happenings pepe-pepeka ri Makka dance (Fire of Mecca). It is said that, this dance is a dance forerunner Gandrang Bulo, expected entry into South Sulawesi in the fifth century, during the Kingdom of Gowa, adopted from the story of Prophet Abraham. Then pepe-pepeka ri Makka evolved into Gandrang Bulo part series.

Gandrang means beating or hitting, bulo means bamboo, because initially Gandrang Bulo yet lacks the drum beat, fiddle, lute and trumpet, but with a sort of simple bamboo-shaped, sound rhythmically. Songs in Gandrang Bulo talk about past history and current state of society that are still sung today. Gandrang Bulo  art has evolved in the Japanese colonial era. When the war against the invaders raged, the artist did not want to lose. They build bases resistance from the stage. Ganrang Bulo became not just a dance, but a place of encouragement struggle with mocking and laughing at the invaders and their lackeys. Since then, Gandrang Bulo become a very popular folk art.

Around the late of 1960s, Gandrang Bulo had re-creations. From that moment, Gandrang Bulo known in dance dramas in ceremonial occasions. Although experiencing many changes, Gandrang Bulo never lost it place and a free media for artists who want to express their everyday problems.

Gandrang Bulo dancers not only from adult, but also played by young boys, so it become attraction in a blend of music and dance performances. Gandrang Bulo scene usually ends with one of the dancer left behind on stage. He continued to dance with fun without realizing that his friends had gone home.

Reference :

Monday, August 26, 2013

Indo' Logo' : Expression of Memories

"The mountains were completely collapsed, likewise the mother earth stopped rotating, because of  longing."

Bugis people, on the one hand known flamable by emotion, but it turns out in the other side, easily touched by the romantic phrase or wise words. They have a repertoire of great literature, they love meaningful words, seeing things simple, especially the relationship between men and women.

Bugis song titled Indo 'Logo', has a philosophic nuance where longing articulated as poetry. At first glance, this song sounds simple, but it presents the romantic poems and including messages about memories. This song tells the story of two memories are etched in one's heart, but the memories fortify him for dialogue. Memories that led to longing, described as a spirited mountain, where the longing was seated.

Mountain as a metaphor of an arrogance and pomposity that due to social and cultural distance that stretched between two human beeing. Memories sometimes make a person to be shut down and not want to exchanged greetings. But when it melts, as solid as any mountain, will be collapsed by lava that flows between them, which will destroy everything.

Lyrics and translation of the song as follows:

Dua bulu' samanna mattetongeng, indo' logo'
(the two mountains as if side by side, my dear)
Kegasi samanna ri onroi alla ri onroi
(Where else whether that would be occupied)
Pallettu sengereng
(to convey the memories)

Sengerengmu samanna pada bulu, ambo' logo'
(thy memories as high as a mountain, my love)
Adammu samanna silappae alla silappae
(thy voice even just a word)
Ruttungeng manengngi
(however undermine everything)

Bulu'e samanna maruttutona, indo' logo'
(The mountains were completely collapsed, my dear)
Tanette samanna leppang tona alla leppatona
(likewise the mother earth stopped rotating)
Nataro uddani
(because of  longing)

Sengerengmu samanna appasekki, ambo logo
(thy memories should be disclosed, my love)
Lettugi samanna telletugi alla telletugi
(whether it reach or not)
Ko mappasemmuki'
(as long as you feel it in thy heart)

Reference :

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Baju Bodo, Lipa' Sa'be : Tulolonna Sulawesi

"speaks in respecful, careful in act, good temper, soft in manners, the girls of Sulawesi"...

Baju bodo is traditional women's clothing of Bugis, Makassar, and Mandar people, in the province of South Sulawesi, Indonesia. The word "baju bodo" is the language of Makassar (baju=dress, bodo=short), while the Bugis people sometimes call it waju tokko, which is tantamount to baju bodo.

Baju bodo have the form of rectangular shape, usually short sleeved, which is half the elbow. Baju bodo is also known as one of the world's oldest fashion. Baju bodo or waju tokko, has been recognized by the people of South Sulawesi since the middle of the ninth century. Fabric used as a base material of baju bodo is muslin, a kind of woven cotton yarns are woven with cotton thread. Muslin has cavities and density of the tenuous thread that is suitable for tropical and dry climates.

Muslin, first created and traded in the city of Dhaka, Bangladesh, refer to note an Arab merchant named Sulaiman in the ninth century. In South Sulawesi, muslin known than European society, who'd known in the seventeenth century and began to popular in France in the eighteenth century.

Formerly, baju bodo looked thin, loose and transparent so as to show breasts, navel and curves of the wearer's body. At the beginning of the 19th century, Don Lopez comte de Paris, an assiten of Deandels introduced camisole, which in Indonesian called "kutang", at that time used by women in Java.

The entry of Islam as the official religion in the several kingdoms in South Sulawesi in the 17th century, was a major issue for indigenous stakeholders. In the teachings of Islam asserted that, clothing was  that covers justified genitalia, not revealing curves and skin tones than the palm of the hand and face. The controversy then addressed wisely by Gowa kingdom, then came up the baju bodo modification known as baju la'bu (similar to baju bodo, but thicker, baggy, long up to the knees) and made of silk fabric. The existence of this baju la'bu was the best solution, it did not violate Islamic law and also did not eliminate traditional values​​.

It said that, any color of baju bodo or waju tokko worn by Bugis women, showing its age or the dignity of the wearer. Amber color worn by girls under the age of 10, which in Buginese was called waju-pella pella (butterfly dress), a depiction of the world were full of cheerfulness child. This color was also a hope that the precocious child in the face of life's challenges.

Girls of 10-14 years old wore orange or pink, called bakko (Bugis) or bakka '(Makassar) which means half-baked. Aged 14-17, still wearing the orange or pink, but dubled, because at this time the girl was believed to be growing. This color was also used by those who were married but did not have children.

Those of age 17-25 years, married and had children, wearing blood red color with fabric layered / tiered. The philosophy was coming from believing that the woman was considered to have bled from her womb. Age 25-40 years on, the color was black. The white color was used by the host / caregivers kings or sorcerers or bissu (religious Bugis-Makassar preacher). The bissu considered to have a white blood incarnation, regardless of the interests of lust, so that lead them to be a liaison with langi' botting (heaven), peretiwi (real world), and ale kawa (the world of spirit).

Daughter of the king, nobles and descendants in Bugis called maddara takku (nobility blood) wearing green. In Bugis, green color called kudara, which coming from the word na takku darana, which literally means "those who uphold the dignity of nobility."

Purple color worn by widows. In Bugis, the color purple called kemummu which can also mean a bruised body part or stumbled. In the social institutions in Bugis society, married a widow was a disgrace.

Baju bodo used in pairs  with lipa' sa'be (silk sarong), a bright plaid. In addition to women, lipa 'sa'be also be worn by men. The quality of sarong, also indicated the social status of the wearer, due to the higher quality of the sarong.

Lipa 'sa'be used as wearing gloves reinforced with rope or belt so as not to sag. If the wearer were women, at the waist, baju bodo hanging down to cover the upper end of the sheath. The wearer usually hold one end then draped in baju bodo sleeve. As accessories, added necklace, bracelet, earrings, and headbands or hairpin in the head. There is also added as an ornamental flower in hair.

Until now, baju bodo worn as a party dress or traditional ceremonies such as weddings, welcoming important guests, also worn by traditional dancers, and the bridesmaid called passappi '.

Impressed by the elegance of a girl wearing baju bodo, a poet named Arsyad Basir A. composed a Makassarese song titled Tulolonna Sulawesi (The Girls of Sulawesi):

Malabbiri' memang tongi
(it's always overseeing)
tulolonna Sulawesi
(the girls of Sulawesi)
ma'baju bodo
(wearing baju bodo)
mangingking lipa' sa'bena
(clamping her silk sarong tip)

baju bodo kasa'eja
(baju bodo in red color)
lipa' sa'be cura' la'ba'
(silk sarung with wide patterned)
bunga niguba
(floral decoration)
ta'dongko' risimbolengna
(tucked in her bun)

sowe-sowena limangna
(her swaying hands)
angka'-angka'na bangkengna
(her moving feet)
kingking lipa'na
(her fashion in holding her sarong)
sangge kanangi nicini '
(really beautiful to look at)

tunai rikana-kana
(speaks in respectful)
tutui ripanggaukang
(careful in act)
ma' baji' ampe'
(good temper)
alusu' ripangngadakkang
(soft in manners)
tulolonna Sulawesi
(the girls of Sulawesi)

Reference :

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Ongkona Arumpone : A Remembrance of Bone War

Bone war in 1905, called Rumpa'na Bone, a raging war between the Kingdom of Bone, who was led by King Bone XXXI, Arumpone La Pawawoi Karaeng Sigeri, against the Dutch army commanded by Colonel Van Loenen. Bone attacked by Dutch troops on July 30, 1905,  but Arumpone had fled to Pasempe.
Dated August 2, 1905, after Arumpone refusing to cooperate, the Dutch troops stormed into Pasempe, but Arumpone with the army and his family had left and fled to Lamuru and further to Citta. In September 1905, Arumpone with his entourage arrived in Pitumpanuwa Wajo. The Dutch troops still following them and on 18 November 1905, meeting Arumpone's brave warriors. At that time, Warlord Abdul Hamid Baso Pagilingi PonggawaE Petta, who was also the son of Arumpone, killed by the Dutch bullet. Seeing his son died, he muttered: "Rumpa'ni Bone!", meaning "Bone entrenchment has been destroyed!".

Finally Arumpone choose to give up, considering the diminishing army. Arumpone arrested and taken to Pare-Pare, then to Makassar. From Makassar, Karaeng Sigeri exiled to Bandung. After the death of La Pawawoi Karaeng Sigeri, Kingdom of Bone was taking care by the Seven Hadat, so that for 26 years no Mangka'u (King) in Bone.

But the struggle of the Bone couldn't be stoped, due to this struggle, the entire kingdom in South Sulawesi at the time, united against the Dutch. Arumpone which was formerly exiled in Bandung, eventually moved to Jakarta. On November 11, 1911, he died in Jakarta, and given a title Matinroe ri Jakarta. In 1976, La Pawawoi Karaeng Sigeri Matinroe ri Jakarta awarded as National Hero, and his bones were moved to Kalibata Memorial Cemetery.

War, has left many bitter memories, either for wives left behind and relatives. There was a story, as the war raged, a wife leaving her husband drove to the field fighting, to maintain the Bone Land of the Dutch naval attack. As an army of the Kingdom of Bone, the husband was obliged to defend the Land of Bone inch by inch until the death. With the accompaniment of blessing his wife, the husband went to fight against the Dutch troops on the beach of Bajo-e. After the battle raged for seven days and seven nights, there came the news that the army had been killed.

Not believing the news, the wife went by looking for her husband. No matter day or night, she kept on finding, looking for her husband. In the journey, when she rest under a hibiscus tree that grows on rice field, she was humming to entertain herself and pondering her fate :

Ooo, mate colli', mate colli'ni warue
(oh, wither, has withered the hibiscus tree)
ritotto' baja-baja alla, ritotto' baja-baja alla
(because every day pruned, because every day pruned)
nariala kembo'ngeng
(to be used as hair rollers)

Ooo, macilaka, macilakana kembo'ngeng
(oh, woe, woe hair rollers)
nappai ribala-bala alla, nappai ribala-bala alla
(it just recently made up, just recently made up)
namate puangna
(when the majesty has gone)

Ooo, taroni mate, taroni mate puangna
(oh, let him passed away, let the majesty passed away)
iyapa upettu rennu alla, iyapa upettu rennu alla
(when I found happyness, when I found happyness)
kucapu'pi mesa'na
(while wiping his tombstone)

Verse of the song above, known as Ongkona Arumpune. The song with many variations,  spoken by generations among the Bugis, but the writer remains unknown. In addition to serve as lullabies, the poetry is laden with meaning and message as well as an expression of creativity, taste and intention.

In the verses of the song tells that the wife roll her hair to be beautiful as a gift for her husband if returned safely from the battlefield. However, when the new hair begins to form, the hibiscus tree wither and die because every day was trimmed to be used as hair rollers. It is an expression of sacrificial love for the wife over her husband who answered the call of duty for his devotion to the Mother Earth. Every struggle requires sacrifice both body and mind. Defending the public interest even though bitter, more precious than personal interests.

Another message in this song is, do not immediately believe the news or information which is still obscure. The death of hibiscus tree described as a sign that her husband had been killed in the war. But the wife remained vibrant, instilled in her heart, that her husband has not died, unless she has touch and rubbed his tombstone.

Reference :

Saturday, August 17, 2013

The Proclamation of Indonesian Independence




Sukarno Signature.svg
Mohammad Hatta signature.svg

The Proclamation of Indonesian Independence was read at 10.00 a.m. on Friday, August 17, 1945. The document was signed by Sukarno and Mohammad Hatta, who were appointed President and Vice-president respectively the following day. An English translation published by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs as of October 1948 included the entire speech as read by Sukarno.

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Thursday, August 15, 2013

The Bamboo Spears : An Ode to The Heroes

Surabaya made ​​history
people rise against
their showing of strength
they were offended, angry

ally with swagger
ordered them to give up
lined up to hand over weapons
with raised hands

trained forces with sophisticated weapons
not able to cripple morale
persistent popular resistance
united to help each other
they were willing and ready to die
for the dignity of independence
for the honor of the nation

ally experienced fighter
spewing all kinds of bullets and bombs
all over town
but people still fighting
with sober weapons
with struggle bamboo spears
bamboo spears against guns
bamboo spears against tanks
bamboo spears against arrogance

that was bamboo spears independence
bamboo spears patriot
bamboo spears devotion
bamboo spears conscience

now, 64 years later
are there bamboo spears still clasping ?
the truth bamboo spears
the justice bamboo spears
the law bamboo spears
which overthrown the traiter of nation's mandate
crippling the thieves of nation's wealth

come on, sweep up the bamboo spears back !
which never lost in the conscience

Poem by : Aspar Paturusi
Jakarta, 2009

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

The Sacred Red-and-White : Indonesian Flag

"The red color represented the blood shed in the War of Independence, while the white could be understood to symbolize the purity of the Indonesians."

Red represents courage, while white represents purity of intent. The national flag of Indonesia known as Sang Saka Merah-Putih ("The Sacred Red-and-White") or Bendera Merah-Putih ("The Red-and-White Flag") or simply Merah-Putih ("The Red-and-White"), or sometimes referred to as Sang Dwiwarna ("The Bicolor") in Indonesian. The flag itself was introduced and hoisted in public at the Indonesian Independence Day ceremony, on 17 August 1945. The design of the flag has remained the same ever since.

Its colors are derived from the banner of the 13th century Majapahit Empire. However it was suggested that the reverence for the colors red and white can trace its origin to older common Austronesian mythology of Mother Earth and Father Sky; both symbolize in colors red (earth) and white (sky). This is one of the reasons why the colors red and white appears in many of the flags throughout Austronesia — from Tahiti to Indonesia and Madagascar. White and Red would also later on symbolize the duality of nature. The earliest record of the use of red and white panji or pataka (long flag along curved bamboo pole) were written in Pararaton; according to this source, the troops of Jayakatwang from Gelang-gelang hoisted the red and white banner during their invasion to Singhasari. This suggested that even before Majapahit era, the red and white colors already revered and used as kingdom's banner since Kediri era. The application of red and white textile coloring is available in ancient Indonesia. White is the natural color of woven cotton fabrics, while red is one of the earliest natural dye discovered by native acquired from the teak leafs, the flowers of Averrhoa bilimbi or the skin of mangosteen fruits.

Not only Javanese kingdoms that used red and white colors, the battle flag of King Sisingamangaraja IX of Batak lands also uses red and white as emblem; with the image of white twin swords called piso gaja dompak against red background. During Aceh War, Aceh warriors also used red and white battle flag, with the image of sword, star and crescent, sun, and also part of Quranic script. Red and white flag is also used as the flag of Buginese Bone kingdom in South Sulawesi, the flag is called Woromporang. The Balinese Badung (Puri Pamecutan) royal banner also contains red and white element, their flag is red, white, and black that probably also derived from Majapahit origin. During Java War (1825–1830) Prince Diponegoro also used red and white banner.
Later, these colors were revived by students and then nationalists in the early 20th century as an expression of nationalism against the Dutch. The red-white flag was flown for the first time in Java in 1928. Under Dutch rule, the flag was prohibited. It was adopted as the national flag on 17 August 1945, when independence was declared and has been in use since then.

There is also another story about the flag of Indonesia, which is significantly related to the flag of the Netherlands. Under Dutch colonialism, every administration used the Netherlands (Red-white-blue) flag. The flag of Indonesia was prohibited. To symbolize the intention of forcing out the Dutch, the Indonesian nationalists and independence movement tore apart the Dutch flag. They tore off the bottom third of the flag, and separated the red and white colors from the blue color. The famous flag tearing incident called "Hotel Yamato incident" happened in 1945 on top of Hotel Majapahit in downtown Surabaya, where young Indonesian revolutionaries tore the blue part of the Dutch flag flown in the hotel to change it to the Indonesian flag in the lead up to the Battle of Surabaya. The main reason was because blue in the Dutch flag was understood as standing for the "blue blooded" aristocracy of Kingdom of the Netherlands. Conversely, the red color represented the blood shed in the War of Independence, while the white could be understood to symbolize the purity of the Indonesians.

Sang Saka Merah-Putih  refers to the historical flag called Bendera Pusaka (heirloom flag) and its replica. The Bendera Pusaka is the flag that was flown in front of Soekarno's house a few moments after he proclaimed Indonesia's independence on 17 August 1945. The original Bendera Pusaka was sewn by Mrs. Fatmawati Soekarno, and was hoisted every year in front of the presidential palace during the independence day ceremony. It was hoisted for the last time on 17 August 1968. Since then it has been preserved and replaced by a replica because the original flag was deemed to be too fragile.
Traditionally, most Indonesians have used red and white as their ceremonial colors, mixing the color of sugar (the red color comes from palm sugar or gula aren) and rice (white in color). Inarguably, until today, both of these are the major components of daily Indonesian cuisine or cooking.

Reference :

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Hadratus Sheikh : Hasyim Asy'ari

"Yet shown Kyai Hasyim and Kyai Kholil; was a moral glory. Both exemplified humility and respect, two things were now increasingly hard to find on the students and our teachers."

Both mental retardation, as well as the nations of Indonesian economy, from Dutch occupation or due to the confines of tradition, had awakened the consciousness of the educated to fight for the dignity of the nation, through the education and organization. Movement that emerged in 1908 was known as the "National Awakening". The spirit of revival was continuing to spread everywhere - once aware of the plight of indigenous people and catched up with other nations. In response, there was a variety of educational organizations and liberation.
Among schools that had persistent against colonialism, responded by forming a national revival movement organizations, such as the Nahdlatul Wathan (Rise of the country) in 1916. Then in 1918 founded Taswirul Afkar or also known as "Nahdlatul Fikri" (awakening of thought), as a vehicle for social and political education of the people and religious students. From there then founded Nahdlatut Tujjar, (the movement of the merchant). States was used as the basis to improve the people's economy. With the Nahdlatul Tujjar, then Taswirul Afkar, in addition to performing as a group also studies the educational institution that was growing very rapidly and has branches in several cities.

After that it was necessary to establish an organization that was more encompassing and more systematically, to anticipate the times. So after coordinating with the various clerics, finally emerging agreement to form an organization called Nahdlatul Ulama (Ulama Awakening) on 16 Rajab 1344 H (January 31, 1926).

NU adopted ahlussunah waljama'ah, a mindset that takes the middle ground between the extremes aqli (rationalist) with the extreme naqli (scripturalist). Because it was the source of thought for NU not only the Qur'an, the Sunnah, but also use the faculty of reason coupled with empirical reality. Such a way of thinking referenced from earlier thinkers such as Abu Hasan Al-Ash'ari and Abu Mansur al-Maturidi in theology. Then in the field were more likely to follow the schools of jurisprudence: Imam Shafi'i and others recognize three schools of thought: Imam Hanafi, Maliki, and Hanbali  as depicted in NU 4 star emblem. While in the field of mysticism, to develop methods of Al-Ghazali and Junaid al-Baghdadi, who integrated between Sufism with Shariah.

The organization was led by KH. Hashim Asy'arie as Rais Akbar. To affirm the basic principle of this organization, KH. Hashim Asy'arie formulated "Kitab Qanun Asasi (basic principles), then also formulated Kitab I'tiqad  Ahlussunnah Wal Jamaah. Both books are then embodied in khittah NU, which served as the basis and reference of NU in thought and action in the fields of social, religious and political.

Kyai Haji Mohammad Hashim Asy'arie - also often spelled Ash'ari or Ashari  (born in the village of Gedang, District Diwek, Jombang, East Java, 10 April 1875 - died in Jombang, East Java, July 25, 1947 at the age of 72 years; 4 Jumada al-Awwal 1292 H-6 Ramadan 1366 H; buried in Tebu Ireng, Jombang) is the founder of Nahdlatul Ulama, the largest Islamic mass organizations in Indonesia. Among Islamic scholars Nahdliyin and he dubbed as  Hadratus Sheikh means maha guru.

KH Hasyim Asyari was as the third son of 10 siblings. His father named Kyai Asyari, leader of pesantren  located in south Jombang. His mother named Halima. While the tenth brother, among others: Nafi'ah, Ahmad Saleh, Radiah, Hassan, Anis, Fatanah, Maimunah, infallible, Nahrawi and Adnan. Based on maternal lineage, KH. Hasyim has a lineage of Sultan Pajang Jaka Tingkir, also descendant of Hindu Majapahit Kingdom, King Brawijaya V (Lembupeteng).

KH Hasyim Asyari learning the basics of the religion of his father and grandfather, Kyai Uthman, who was also the leader of Pesantren Nggedang in Jombang. Since the age of 15, he ventured studying at various schools, including Pesantren Wonokoyo in Probolinggo, Pesantren Langitan in Tuban, Pesantren Trenggilis in Semarang, Pesantren Kademangan in Bangkalan and Pesantren Siwalan in Sidoarjo.

In 1892, Kyai Hasyim Asyari went to Mecca, and studied under Sheikh Ahmad Khatib Minangkabau, Sheikh Mahfudh at-Tarmisi, Sheikh Ahmad Amin Al-Attar, Sheikh Ibrahim Arab, Sheikh Said Yamani, Sheikh Rahmaullah, Sheikh Sholeh Bafadlal, Sayyid Abbas Maliki, Syed Alwi bin Ahmad As-Saqqaf, and Sayyid Husayn al-Ethiopia. Interestingly, with Muhammadiyah's founder KH Ahmad Dahlan, he studied to Shaykh Ahmad Chatib.

In Makkah, Kyai Hasyim originally studied under the guidance of Shaykh Mafudz of Termas (Kediri) which was the first scholar from Indonesia who tought Sahih Bukhari in Makkah. Shaykh Mafudz was scholar of hadith and it was so interesting to learn by Kyai Hasyim so that upon his return to Indonesia, he was very well-known in teaching hadith. He obtained a diploma directly from Shaykh Mahfudz to teach Sahih Bukhari, Sheikh Mahfudz was a last receiver heir of the linkage (isnad) tradition from 23 generation of recipients from this work. In addition to studying hadith he also learn tassawuf (Sufi) to explore the Qadiri Order and Naqsyabandiyah.
Kyai Hasyim also studied Shafi'i fiqh madhhab under the tutelage of Shaykh Ahmad Katib of Minangkabau who was also experts in the field of astronomy (astronomy), mathematics (arithmetic), and algebra. In the studying on the Shaykh Ahmad Katib,  Kyai Hasyim learn Tafsir al-manar monumental works of Muhammad Abduh. In principle, he admired the rationality of thought from Abduh but disagree with  the derision to traditionalist ulama.
His teacher who else was included famous scholars of Banten which habitation in the Makkah al-Nawawi Banteni. While teachers were not of the archipelago include Shaikh Shata and Shaikh Dagistani which were a well-known scholars of the time.

KH. Hashim Asy'arie known as ulama reformer. In addition to teach religion in schools, he also thought the students to read books of general knowledge, organization, and speech. Every Ramadan Kiai Hasyim had 'tradition' to study hadith Bukhari and Muslim for a month. The study was able to draw the attention of Muslims.

One time, KH. KH Hasyim Asy'arie met with Mohammad Cholil  and engaging memorable dialogue. Mbah Cholil was KH Mohammad Cholil popular name, he was Maduranese, was very famous scholars of that day. Nearly all the founders of NU and NU important figures earlier generations never studied to the caregiver and leader of Pesantren Kademangan, Bangkalan Madura. Kiai Hasyim himself while no less brilliant. Not only the founder and supreme leader of NU, which had a very strong influence to the clergy, but also because the height of his knowledge, particularly in the science of Hadith.

"I used to teach thee. But today, I stated that I was a student of thee,"said Mbah Cholil. Kyai Hasyim replied, "I really do not expect that Tuan Guru would utter such words. Hadth not wrong that thee learn from me ? As thou own student, thou old student, and also now. In deed, it would be forever being Tuan Guru's student."

Without feeling flattered, Mbah Cholil persisted with his intentions. "The decision and the certainty of our hearts are fixed, not negotiable and can be amended again, that we will also learning here, to accommodate thou sciences, and studied to thee," he said. Because he was familiar with the character of his teacher, Kiai Hasyim could not do other than accept him as student.

The funny thing was, when they came down from the mosque after prayers in congregation, they hurried to slippers place, sometimes even precede each other, because the pair was about to walk into his teacher.

Indeed, it could happen eventually a student was smarter than his teacher. And it's always happening. Yet shown Kyai Hasyim and Kyai Kholil; was a moral glory. Both exemplified humility and respect, two things were now increasingly hard to find on the students and our teachers.

Kiai Hasyim renowned not only scholars, but also a successful farmer and merchant. Dozens of acres of his land. Two days a week, usually Kiai Hasyim not do the teaching. Sometimes, he went to Surabaya to sell horses, iron and  agricultural products. From farming and trading, Kiai Hasyim support his family and the school. From his marriage to Mafiqah, daughter of Kiai Ilyas, Kiai Hasyim blessed with 10 sons: Hannah, Khoriyah, Aisha, Umm Abdul Rights (wife of Kiai Idris), Abdul Wahid, Abdul Kholik, Abdul Karim, Ubaidullah, Masrurah and Muhammad Yusuf. His son, Abdul Wahid, became the Minister of Religious Affairs in the first cabinet of Indonesia, during the reign of Sukarno. His grandson, Abdurrahman Wahid, known as Gus Dur, became the fourth President of Indonesia.

After Indonesian independence, through his speeches, Kiai Hasyim burning the spirit of the youth so that they were willing to sacrifice to defend freedom. He died on July 25, 1947 of a cerebral hemorrhage and was buried in Tebuireng and the government appointed him as National Hero.

RAPI film picked up the story of the religious role in the history of Indonesia, through the figure of KH. Hashim Asy'arie who also played a key role in seizing and maintaining the independence of Indonesia. The movie called "Sang Kiai" began playing in Indonesian cinemas around the month of May 2013. This Rako Prijanto's work showing a series of prominent Indonesian artists such as Ikranagara who played KH. Hashim Asy'arie, Christine Hakim, Agus Kuncoro, Adipati Dolken, Dimas Aditya, as well as newcomers Meriza Febriani.

Reference :

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Lebaran : Ketupat

Some say, Ketupat or Kupat derived from the words  "laku papat". "Laku" means behaviour or deed, "papat" means four. The four deeds performed only during Ramadan until 1 Shawwal : shawm, tarawih, zakat, and Eid prayers.

In most of Indonesia, ketupat is linked to Islamic tradition of lebaran (Eid ul-Fitr). Ketupat is made from rice that has been wrapped in a woven palm leaf pouch and boiled. As the rice cooks, the grains expand to fill the pouch and the rice becomes compressed. This method of cooking gives the ketupat its characteristic form and texture of a rice dumpling. Local stories passed down through the generations have attributed the creation of this style of rice preparation to the seafarers' need to keep cooked rice from spoiling during long sea voyages. The coco leaves used in wrapping the rice are always shaped into a triangular or diamond form and stored hanging in bunches in the open air. The shape of the package facilitates moisture to drip away from the cooked rice while the coco leaves allow the rice to be aerated and at the same time prevent flies and insects from touching it.

According to Javanese traditions, the Indonesian lebaran tradition was first started when Sunan Bonang, one of Wali Songo of Tuban in 15th-century Java, calls for the Muslims to elevate the perfection of their Ramadhan fast by asking forgiveness and forgiving others' wrongdoings. The tradition on preparing and consuming ketupat or kupat in Javanese language during lebaran is believed to be introduced by Sunan Kalijaga, one of Wali Songo (nine Muslim saints) that spread Islam in Java, as it contains appropriate symbolism. 

In terms of language, kupatan (Javanese) presumably derived from the word Kaffatan (Arabic) obtain changes in speech sounds into kupatan Java. Same as the word baraka (Arabic, meaning blessing) become berkat (Javanese) or salama (Arabic) become selamet (Javanese).

It is believed that kupat means ngaku lepat ("admitting one's mistakes") in Javanese language, in accordance to asking for forgiveness tradition during lebaran. Hence the term, it can be stated that kupatan is a symbol of the end of the fasting month or kaffatan mark of excellence in the lives of individuals and communities. So kupatan tradition as a marker to the human who is perfectly Islam.

The crossed weaving of palm leafs symbolizes mistakes and sins committed by human beings, and the inner whitish rice cake symbolize purity and deliverance from sins after observing Ramadhan fast, prayer and rituals. Other than Java, the tradition on consuming ketupat during Eid ul-Fitr is also can be found throughout Indonesia; from Sumatra, Kalimantan, Sulawesi, Nusa Tenggara, also to neighboring Malaysia.

In addition, some say, ketupat or Kupat derived from the words  "laku papat". Laku means behaviour or deed, papat means four. The four deeds performed only during Ramadan until 1 Shawwal : sawm, tarawih, zakat, and Eid prayers.

Ketupat is cutted open, its skin (woven palm leaf) being removed, the inner rice cake is cut in pieces, and served as staple food, as the replacement of plain steamed rice. It usually eaten with rendang, opor ayam, sayur labu (jicama soup), sambal goreng ati (liver in sambal) or served as an accompaniment to satay (chicken or beef or lamb in skewers) or gado-gado (mixed vegetables with peanut sauce).

Ketupat cooked for 5 hours or more to be really cooked, then drained and aerated. It is usually lasting up to 2 days. After that, it can be steamed again as not stale.

Ketupat shape similar to the shape of a heart. It said, the complexity of webbing that wraps the ketupat is a symbol of many human errors that wraps our hearts. However, Ketupat is a part of the culture in the archipelago.

Reference :
- Apakabardunia,com

Friday, August 9, 2013

Kutub al-Sittah : The Hadith Collection

"I leave behind me two things, the QURAN and my example, the SUNNAH and if you follow these you will never go astray."
(the last shermon of Prophet Muhammad saw)
In Arabic the word ḥadīth means 'a piece of information conveyed either in a small quantity or large'. The Arabic plural is أحاديث ʾaḥādīṯ/aḥādīth. Hadith also refers to the speech of a person. As taḥdīṯ/taḥdīth is the infinitive, or verbal noun, of the original verb form; hadith is, therefore, not the infinitive; rather it is a noun.

In Islamic terminology, the term hadith refers to reports of statements or actions of Prophet Muhammad (pbuh), or of his tacit approval or criticism of something said or done in his presence. Classical hadith specialist Ibn Hajar al-Asqalani says that the intended meaning of hadith in religious tradition is something attributed to Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) but that is not found in the Quran. Other associated words possess similar meanings including: khabar (news, information) often refers to reports about Prophet Muhammad (pbuh), but sometimes refers to traditions about his companions and their successors from the following generation; conversely, athar (trace, vestige) usually refers to traditions about the companions and successors, though sometimes connotes traditions about The Prophet (pbuh). The word sunnah (custom) is also used in reference to a normative custom of The Prophet (pbuh) or the early Muslim community.

Traditions of the life of Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) and the early history of Islam were passed down mostly orally for more than a hundred years after The Prophet's death in AD 632. Muslim historians say that Caliph Uthman ibn Affan (ra) (the third khalifa (caliph) of the Rashidun Empire, or third successor of Prophet Muhammad (pbuh), who had formerly been The Prophet's secretary), is generally believed to urge Muslims to record the hadith just as Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) suggested to some of his followers to write down his words and actions.

Uthman's labours were cut short by his assassination, at the hands of aggrieved soldiers, in 656. No sources survive directly from this period so we are dependent on what later writers tell us about this period.

By the 9th century the number of hadiths had grown exponentially. Islamic scholars of the Abbasid period were faced with a huge corpus of miscellaneous traditions, some of them flatly contradicting each other. Many of these traditions supported differing views on a variety of controversial matters. Scholars had to decide which hadith were to be trusted as authentic and which had been invented for political or theological purposes. To do this, they used a number of techniques which Muslims now call the science of hadith.

By means of hadith terminology, hadith are categorized as ṣaḥīḥ (sound, authentic), ḍaʿīf (weak), or mawḍūʿ (fabricated). Other classifications used also include: ḥasan (good), which refers to an otherwise ṣaḥīḥ report suffering from minor deficiency, or a weak report strengthened due to numerous other corroborating reports; and munkar (denounced) which is a report that is rejected due to the presence of an unreliable transmitter contradicting another more reliable narrator. Both sahīh and hasan reports are considered acceptable for usage in Islamic legal discourse. Classifications of hadith may also be based upon the scale of transmission. Reports that pass through many reliable transmitters at each point in the isnad up until their collection and transcription are known as mutawātir. These reports are considered the most authoritative as they pass through so many different routes that collusion between all of the transmitters becomes an impossibility. Reports not meeting this standard are known as aahad, and are of several different types. 

The sanad and matn are the primary elements of a hadith. The sanad is the information provided regarding the route by which the matn has been reached. It is so named due to the reliance of the hadith specialists upon it in determining the authenticity or weakness of a hadith. The term sanad is synonymous with the similar term isnad. The matn is the actual wording of the hadith by which its meaning is established, or stated differently, the objective at which the sanad arrives at, consisting of speech.

The sanad consists of a ‘chain’ of the narrators, each mentioning the one from whom they heard the hadith until mentioning the originator of the matn, along with the matn itself. The first people who received hadith were the Prophet's Companions, so they preserved and understood it, knowing both its generality and particulars. They conveyed it to those after them as they were commanded. Then the generation following them, the Followers, received it and then conveyed it to those after them, and so on. Thus, the Companion would say, “I heard the Prophet say such and such.” The Follower would say, “I heard a Companion say, ‘I heard the Prophet....’” The one after the Follower would say, “I heard someone say, ‘I heard a Companion say, ‘I heard the Prophet’” and so on.

Early religious scholars stressed the importance of the sanad. For example, according to an early Quranic exegete, Matr al-Warraq,  the verse from the Quran, “Or a remnant of knowledge,”refers to the isnad of a hadith. In addition, Abd Allah ibn al-Mubarak said, “The isnad is from the religion; were it not for the isnad anyone could say anything they wanted.” According to Ibn al-Salah, the sanad originated within the Muslim scholastic community and remains unique to it. Ibn Hazm specified this claim by adding that the connected, continuous sanad is particular to the religion of Islam. He elaborated that the sanad was used by the Jewish community; but they had a break of more than thirty generations between them and Moses. Likewise, the Christians limited their use of thesanad to the conveyance of the prohibition of divorce. The practice of paying particular attention to the sanad can be traced to the generation following that of the Companions, based upon the statement of Muhammad ibn Sirin.

Those who were not given to require a sanad were, in the stronger of two opinions, the Companions of the Prophet, while others, such as al-Qurtubi, include the older of the Followers as well.This is due to the Companions all being considered upright, trustworthy transmitters of hadith, such that a mursal hadith narrated by a Companion is acceptable, as the elided narrator, being a Companion, is known to be acceptable.

Hadith Qudsi (or Sacred Hadith) is a sub-category of hadith which are sayings of Prophet Muhammad (pbuh). Muslims regard the Hadith Qudsi as the words of God, repeated by The Prophet and recorded on the condition of an sanad. According to as-Sayyid ash-Sharif al-Jurjani, the Hadith Qudsi differ from the Quran in that the former are "expressed in The Prophet's words", whereas the latter are the "direct words of God". An example of a Hadith Qudsi is the hadith of Abu Hurairah who said that Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) said: "When God decreed the Creation He pledged Himself by writing in His book which is laid down with Him: My mercy prevails over My wrath."

The Kutub al-Sittah are six books containing collections of hadiths, compiled by six Sunni Muslim scholars in the ninth century CE. They are sometimes referred to as Al-Sihah al-Sittah, which translates as "The Authentic Six". They were first formally grouped and defined by Ibn al-Qaisarani in the 11th century. Since then, they have enjoyed near-universal acceptance as part of the official canon of Sunni Islam.

Sunni Muslims view the six major hadith collections as their most important. They are, in order of authenticity:
  1. Sahih Bukhari, collected by Imam Bukhari (d. 256 A.H., 870 C.E.), includes 7275 ahadith
  2. Sahih Muslim, collected by Muslim b. al-Hajjaj (d. 261 A.H., 875 C.E.), includes 9200 ahadith
  3. Sunan al-Sughra, collected by al-Nasa'i (d. 303 A.H., 915 C.E.)
  4. Sunan Abu Dawood, collected by Abu Dawood (d. 275 A.H., 888 C.E.)
  5. Jami al-Tirmidhi, collected by al-Tirmidhi (d. 279 A.H, 892 C.E)
  6. Sunan ibn Majah, collected by Ibn Majah (d. 273 A.H., 887 C.E.)
The first two, commonly referred to as the Two Sahihs as an indication of their authenticity, contain approximately seven thousand ahadith altogether if repetitions are not counted, according to Ibn Hajar.

Book of 1 s.d. 5 above is called "Al-fiqh 'l-khamsah" or "Al Kutubu' I-khamsah". Most scholars Mutaakhkhirin, namely Fadlli ibn Abdul Tahir, also classify the book into it a staple longer, so known  in society as "Al Kutubu 'I-Sitta" (Book Six). He put the book of Sunan Ibn Majah became the sixth principal. His opinion was attended by Abdul Ghani Al-Maqdisi,  Al-Mizzi, then Al-Hafidh Ibn Hajar and Al-Khazraji. The five books consist of 95% hadish of law, which 5% collected by some authentic books compiled in the fourth century.

The first book, Sahih Al Bukhary, is the first book that recorded authentic hadiths. Most scholars of hadith have agreed that Sahih Al Bukhary set is authentic book after the Qur'an. 
The second book, Sahih Muslim, is subject of the books of hadith have been a guideline. After Sahih Bukhary, Sahih Muslim was the one who made the guidelines. Sahih Muslim has better arrangement than Sahih Al-Bukhary, because it's easier for us to look for a hadith in it, rather than looking at in Sahih Al Bukhary. 

The third book, includes selected sunan (practices of sunnah), and was named Sunan Al Mujtaba Mina'I-Sunan. When An-Nasa'i compiled it, it's bigger, then gave it to an Amir at Ar Ramlah. Amir was asked: "Is this content Sahih Sunan entirely?" An-Nasa'i said: 'It contained no authentic, there is hasan and there are almost similar with both. The Hadith which is very weak or illegitimate, I explained at the end. I call in the book is not the hadiths are rejected by all people, and that does not say anything mean: good hadith. " 
The fourth book, Sunan Abu Dawud is legal advice; few are related to other matters. 
The fifth book, said constituent, At Turmudzy: "I do not put into the book but at the hadith has been practiced by some to lack of jurists." 

The sixth book, below of all the books mentioned above. Ibn Tahir Al Maqdsy, looked at the Sunan sixth principal. Ibn Al Thair Maqdisy, makes this book as the sixth kitaab, then followed by Al Hafidh Abdul Ghany Al Maqdisy in the book Al Ikmal. They put it on Al Muwatta Sunan, because many of it top zawaid other books. Razin Al Sarqasthy make Al Muwatta 'and this is the sixth book is a book of six by Ibn al-Athir in the book Jami'ul Usul. Most of Sharh Sunan Majah is: Mishbahul'z Zujajah, essays and Sharh As Sayuthy As Sindy. Only hadith narrated by Ibn Majah themselves most dla'if. This can be seen by the sharf.

Hadith is viewed as the second  source of Islamic law after the Qur'an. A more complete position are as follows:
    The hadith,
      Hadith are regarded by traditional Islamic schools of jurisprudence as important tools for understanding the Quran and in matters of jurisprudence. Hadith were evaluated and gathered into large collections during the 8th and 9th centuries. These works are referred to in matters of Islamic law and history on  this day.
      Reference :

      Thursday, August 8, 2013

      Lebaran : Eid al-Fitr in Indonesia

      Lebaran or Idul Fitri is Eid al-Fitr in Indonesia and is one of the major national holiday in the country. Lebaran holiday officially lasts for two days in the Indonesian calendar, however for many individuals or families it could last for several days more as many Muslims take paid time off from their workplace during these days.

      "Idul Fitri" is Indonesian spelling of Arabic "Eid al-Fitr". While "lebaran" is local name for this festive occasion, the etymology is not clear. It is suggested derived from Javanese word lebar which means "finished",then the word "lebar" is absorbed into Indonesian language with additional suffix "-an", so it becomes a common vocabulary for a celebration when the fasting ritual is "finished”, or derived from Sundanese word lebar which means "abundance" or "many" to describe the abundance of foods and delicacies served for visiting guests; family, relatives, neighbors and friends during this festive occasion. Another theory sugested, "lebaran" is derived from Betawi, lebar which means "wide and broad", so the celebration means to broaden or widen one's heart feeling after fasting ritual of Ramadhan. Madurese people have also a similar word called "lober" to describe the completion of Ramadhan fast.

      The term lebaran usually used specific to describe Eid al-Fitr Islamic holiday, however in looser terms it sometimes used to describe similar festivals and celebrations. For example in Indonesian the term lebaran haji (lit: hajj's lebaran) is informally used to describe Eid al-Adha, also lebaran cina (lit:Chinese lebaran) usually used to describe Tahun Baru Imlek, Chinese lunar new year celebrated by Chinese Indonesian. Christmas however, although bearing similarity in abundance of foods, is never referred to as lebaran, but just "natal" or "natalan" instead.

      Additionally, in Indonesia Idul Fitri has a legally mandated salary bonus for all employees, known as Tunjangan Hari Raya (THR). The mandated amount of this salary bonus differs by region. For example, within the Jakarta region the THR bonus must be at least not less than one month's full salary paid in advance of Idul Fitri, in addition to the employee's regular salary. Thus, Idul Fitri is also a paid holiday. Breaching or withholding THR is a very serious labour law infraction and punished severely, regardless of employer status or position.

      For Lebaran, Indonesians usually will buy and wear new clothes and footwears. Shopping malls and bazaars are usually filled with people to get things for Lebaran such as; new clothes, shoes, sandals even food to serve days ahead of Idul Fitri, which creates a distinctive festive atmosphere throughout the country, along with traffic mayhem. Lebaran creates special occasions for shoppings that often generate retail business, as the result retail businesses will try to attracts shoppers with special Lebaran discounts. It is quite similar with Christmas for Christians, however the things bought usually fashion apparels, clothings and footwear, and it is bought for oneselves, not as gift for others. Many banks, government and private offices are closed for the duration of the Lebaran festivities.

      One of the largest temporary human migrations globally is the prevailing custom of the Lebaran where workers, particularly unskilled labourers such as maids and construction workers, return to their home town or city to celebrate with their families and to ask forgiveness from parents, in-laws, and other elders. This is known in Indonesia as mudik, pulang kampung (homecoming). It is an annual tradition that people in big cities such as Greater Jakarta, Bandung, Surabaya, or elsewhere, travel to their hometowns or other cities to visit relatives, to request forgiveness, or just to celebrate Eid with the whole family. The government of Indonesia provides additional transportation to handle the massive surge of travellers in several days prior and after the lebaran. In 2013 there are around 30 million people travels to their hometowns during lebaran holiday, brought and spend the total sum of money around 90 trillion rupiah (around US$ 9 billion) from main urban centers to rural areas, pulsing economic opportunities and business from the city to the villages. The numbers of Indonesians that took mudik or pulang kampung travel is quite tremendous, the numbers is slightly equal with the whole population of Malaysia hit the road altogether, causing massive traffic jams and a sudden rise of demand and volume of intercity transportations.

      The impact is indeed tremendous as millions of cars and motorcycles jam the roads and highways, causing kilometres of traffic jams each year. The annual massive traffic jam usually hit Jalur Pantura,  North Java  coast road. Additionally, the wealthier classes often go to local hotels or overseas to accommodate the absence of their domestic servants, drivers and even security guards. Singaporean, Malaysian and Indonesian hotels have been particularly successful marketing lucrative Lebaran or Idul Fitri "escape package".

      The night before Idul Fitri is called takbiran, it is filled with the sounds of many muezzin chanting the takbir in the mosques or musallahs. In larger cities people usually fill the streets and also chanting takbir in their cars and motorcycles, which often creating night of traffic jam. In some instances fireworks and firecrackers might be ignited, however these actions is discouraged by police officers as it could be dangerous to lit these explosives over the crowd. In many parts of Indonesia, especially in the rural areas, pelita, obor or lampu tempel (oil lamps, similar to tiki torches) are lit up and placed outside and around homes.

      On the Lebaran day, after performing Eid prayer in the morning, people dressed in their new or best clothes will gather to greet their family and neighbours. It is common to greet people with"Selamat Idul Fitri" which means "Happy Eid". Muslims also greet one another with "mohon maaf lahir dan batin", which means "Forgive my physical and emotional (wrongdoings)", because Idul Fitri is not only for celebrations but also a time for atonement to ask for forgiveness for sins which they may have committed but was cleansed as a result of the fasting in the Muslim month of Ramadan. During this Eid morning to afternoon, the zakat alms for poors usually distributed in the mosques.

      Families usually will have special Lebaran meal served during breakfast, brunch or lunch; special dishes will be served such as ketupat, opor ayam,rendang, sambal goreng ati, sayur lodeh and lemang (a type of glutinous rice cake cooked in bamboo). Various types of snacks; roasted peanuts, kue,cookies, dodol and imported dates sweet delicacies are also served during this day, together with fruit syrup beverages. The lively or alternatively very emotional devotional music blended with Quranic verses associated with Ramadan and Eid – known as Kaisidah or more correctly, Qasida – can be heard throughout the country. These are commonly performed by famous musicians, some of whom may be international stars, and televised nationwide.

      Younger families usually visit their older neighbours or relatives to wish and greet them a Happy Eid also to ask for forgiveness. During these visits, it is a customs for older, established or married couple to give uang lebaran, small amount of moneys for childrens of their own, relatives' as well as neighbours'. Idul Fitri is a very joyous day for children as adults give them money in colourful envelopes. To cater for this customs, Indonesian Banks and Centrak Bank of Indonesia usually open some money changer counters to change larger to smaller denominations several days prior to Lebaran. The denominations may vary from 1,000, 2,000, 5,000 to 10,000 rupiah.

      It is customary for Muslim-Indonesians to wear a traditional cultural clothing on Eid al-Fitr. The Indonesian male outfit is known as baju koko: a collarless long or short-sleeve shirt with traditional embroidered designs with a "kilt" sarung of songket, ikat or similar woven, plaid-cloth. Alternatively, men may wear either Western-style business suits or more traditional loose-fitting trousers with colour-matched shirts, and either a peci hat or regional cultural headwear and songkok.
      Traditional female dress is known as kebaya kurung. It consists of, normally, a loose-fitting kebaya blouse (which may be enhanced with brocade and embroidery), a long skirt both of which may be batik, or the sarung skirt made of batik, ikat or songket and either the jilbab (hijab) or its variant the stiffened kerudung.

      It is common for many Muslims in Indonesia to visit the graves of loved ones. However, visiting graves most commonly done previously, several days before Ramadhan. During this visit, they will clean the grave, recite Ya-Seen, a chapter (sura) from the Quran and also perform the tahlil ceremony. All these are done as a means to ask God to forgive both the dead and the living for their sins.

      Several days after lebaran usually marked with arus balik (returning waves) of mudik lebaran (lebaran home-coming). People returning to cities of their workplaces from their hometowns, and just like the mudik lebaran it create massive temporary migrations that requires large amount of transportation for travellers that often resulted in gridlock traffic jams.

      In Indonesia there is a special ritual called halal bi-halal. During this, Muslim Indonesians visit their elders, in the family, the neighbourhood, or their work, and show respect to them. This could be done during or several days after Idul Fitri. Usually core family and neighbour first during first day of Idul Fitri, further relatives in the next day, and work colleagues in days to weeks later after they get back to work. They will also seek reconciliation (if needed), and preserve or restore harmonious relations.

      Taqabalallahu minna wa minkum
      (May Allah accept it from you and us)

      Reference :

      Sunday, August 4, 2013

      The Story of A Gratefull Man and The Two Liar's

      If you give thanks,  I will give you more, but if you are thankless, then my punishment is indeed severe." 
      (QS Ibraheem 14:7)

      Once there were three men from the children of Israel, a leper, a blind man and a bald man; whom Allah wanted to test, so He sent an angel to them. The angel asked the leper, ‘What would you most like to have?’ the leper said, ‘Good complexion and good skin, because the people consider me to be filthy.’ Then the angel touched him and he was cured. He was given a good complexion and good skin. Then the angel said, ‘Which property would you most like to have?’ The leper said, ‘Camels.’ So he was given a pregnant camel, and the angel said, ‘May Allah bless you with it.’

      Then the angel came to the bald man and said, ‘What would you most like to have?’ He said, "Nice hair, and I wish to be cured from this disease because people find me repulsive.’ The angel touched him, and he was given nice hair.’ Then the angel said, ‘Which property would you most like to have/’ He said, ‘Cows.’ So the angel gave him a pregnant cow that had plenty of milk. The angel said to him, ‘May Allah bless you with it.’

      The angel came to the blind man and said, ‘What would you most like to have?’ He said, ‘I wish Allah would restore my sight so I can see the people.’ He touched his eyes and Allah gave him his sight back. The angel said, ‘Which property would you most like to have?’ He said, ‘Sheep.’ So the angel gave him a pregnant sheep. The angel said to him, ‘May Allah bless you with it.’

      Later, all three pregnant animals gave birth to their young. They multiplied and brought forth so many (animals) that one of the men had a herd of camels filling a valley, one had a herd of cows fillings a valley, and the other one had a flock of sheep filling a valley.

      Then the angel, disguised to appear as a leper, visited the leper and said, ‘I am a poor man, who has lost all means of livelihood while on a journey. So none will satisfy my need except Allah and then you. In the Name of Him Who has given you such nice complexion, such beautiful skin, and so much property, I ask you to give me a camel so that I may reach my destination.’

      The man replied, ‘I have many obligations (so I cannot give any to you).’ The angel said, ‘I think I know you, were you not a leper who the people shunned? Weren’t you a poor man and then Allah gave this to you?’ He replied, ‘I inherited this from my family.’ The angel said, ‘If you are lying, then let Allah make you as you were before.’

      Then the angel, disguised as a bald man, went to the bald man and dais the same as he had the leper. He too answered the same way. The angel told him, ‘If you are lying, then let Allah make you as you were before.’

      Then the angel, disguised as a blind man, visited the blind man and said, ‘I am a poor man and a traveller, whose means of livelihood have been exhausted while on a journey. I have nobody to help me except Allah, and after Him, you yourself. I ask you in the name of Him who has given you back your eyesight to give me a sheep, so that with its help, I may complete my journey.’ The man said, ‘I was once blind, and Allah returned my sight to me, I was once poor and Allah made me rich. So take anything you like from what I have. By Allah, I will not praise you for leaving anything (you need) of my property which you may take for Allah’s sake.’ The angel replied, ‘Keep your property. You (three men) have been tested. Allah is pleased with you, but He is angry with your two companions.

      The story above taken from  authentic hadeeth,  Imam al-Bukhari reported from Abu Huraryah (radhi ‘Allahu anhu), that the Messenger of Allah (sallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam)   tells a story about the children of Israel that shows us the importance of the connection between trials, and being thankful and grateful to Allah (subhana wa TA’ALA) and obeying His Messenger (sallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam). Imam An-Nawawi also mentions the story in his hadeeth book of the famous "Riyadush Saliheen".

      In the Qur’aan, Allah (subhana wa ta’ala) reminds us that if we are grateful for what he gives us, then He will increase our blessings. On the other hand, if we ungrateful, and act as if Allah owes us something, His favours and blessing will be taken away and we will suffer a severe punishment:
      "And Remember when your Lord announced : If you give thanks, I will give you more, but if you are thankless, then my punishment is indeed severe." 
      (QS Ibraheem 14:7)

      If we begin to be ungrateful, Allah (subhana wa TA’ALA) often is still merciful with us in order to test us. This kind of test may affect someone in one of the following two ways. First, these tests may show us the true nature of our behaviour, which we may have been too ignorant or proud about to even see. Secondly, we may feel sorry for being ungrateful and repent to Allah (subhana wa TA’ALA) and obey His Messenger (sallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam).

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