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Seren Taun Guru Bumi 2011 in Bogor

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Seren Taun Guru Bumi 2011 in Bogor

18 Jan 2011 -  23 Jan 2011


Seren Taun is a ritual of the Sundanese community living in the Sindang Barang village near Bogor, West Java, which is held every year following their traditional calendar. This is a harvest festival when farmers honor God and pray for the next crop. The event is participated by people in the Tamansari region, representatives from surrounding villages, as well as from the West Java local government

Seren Taun commences January 18th,  2011 with a pilgrimage called Ngembang to the ancestors tombs around Mount Salak. The journey starts from Imah Gede (or the Grand House) at Sindang Barang cultural village, led by the elders.  The Netepkeun ceremony follows, signaling the beginning of the actual Seren Taun rituals.  This ceremony takes place in the pabeasan (rice barn) in the Imah Gede and is led by Sang Rama the chief elder and other elders. Here, all of the vegetables and other food supplies needed for the ceremony are gathered and cooked.

On the 3rd day follow the Nyawer Sudat and Ngalage rituals, when mass circumcision is done for the village boys. After circumcision, the children are paraded in the sawer procession when they will be showered with rice, chilies, and other produce, accompanied by traditional music and dances.

The following days, celebrations continue with the Sebret kasep, Ngukulan, Helaran and Nugel Munding filled with various art performances such as the Jaipong Dance, Pencak Silat and others.

Highlight of the Festival is the Helaran Dongdang held on the last day of the event.  Preparations are  made since dawn when the entire community of Sindang Barang village gather at the Sindangbarang Mosque carrying decorated produce of their harvest (called Dongdang).The Dongdang parade is followed by the Rengkong (harvested rice) carriers, the elders, artisans and musical entourage, and others.

The parade heads to the center of the Sindang Barang village where is performed the highlight of the series of rituals called Majikeun Pare. Here, the Pare Ayah (Father Rice) and the Pare Ambu (Mother Rice) are placed in the Ratna Inten barns. Afterwards, Sang Rama  blesses the dongdangs and distribute these to all participants. Gondang, Reog, Angklung Gubrag, Kendang Pencak art performances then follow. Closing the Seren Taun Festivities, a performance of Wayang Golek (Wooden Puppet show) held in the evening and lasts to the wee hours of the morning.

As an agriculture society, the Sindang Barang community holds the Seren Taun Guru Bumi festivities as a sacred ceremony, a way to thank and honor God. This is a rare occasion where you can be part of an expression of precious local wisdom. The Seren Taun Guru Bumi 2011 is definitely an occasion worth experiencing.


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