This was true in Yogyakarta, the center of Javanese culture, where people were seen preparing for New Year rituals on Friday.
of Samas beach in Bantul regency, for instance, were preparing for the
Mahesa Sura procession for the Javanese New Year, which falls on Nov. 27
The procession will include the parading of a buffalo head that will eventually be cast into the Indian Ocean south of Java.
is a form of our gratitude for the fortune and blessings that God has
given us and to ward off bad luck,” a local elder said.
practice of casting offerings into the sea (labuhan) is a popular
Javanese ritual performed to dispel bad luck. Other beaches popular for
labuhan rituals are Parangkusumo and Parangtritis Beaches in Kretek,
Meanwhile, Kamijan, a resident of Tegalrejo, Bantul, was
seen preparing for an individual cleansing rite, blessing several
ancestral heirlooms with flower water and fragrance.
Others conduct personal cleansing rituals by praying or burning incense.
Legowo, the head of the Bantul Tourism Agency, said tourists would
flock to the various traditions ceremonies and cultural performances
that would be held to greet the Javanese New Year.
Events on the
beaches in the south of Bantul might generate Rp 30 million (US$3,300)
in ticket sales alone on the eve of Sura, he said.
“We hope and pray for a high turnout and sunny weather so visitors will not be troubled.”
secure celebrations along the coast, the Bantul Police have deployed
350 officers to strategic places and congestion-prone areas.
will step up safety to prevent accidents due to tourists swimming in the
sea,” Taufik M. Faki, a member of the National Search and Rescue
Agency’s Parangtritis unit, said.
Residents living on the slopes
of Mount Merapi in Kaliurang, Sleman, Yogyakarta, will commemorate Sura
Eve by marching in silence with offerings. The same silent march, known
as the tapa bisu, will be held around the fortress of the Yogyakarta