Muslim boys carry balloons during 'magengan kubro' celebration to welcome Ramadhan at Al Akbar Mosque in Surabaya, East Java, on Friday. (Antara Photo/Zabur Karuru)
This Is How Indonesia Welcomes Ramadan
BY : ANTARA PHOTO
MAY 04, 2019
Indonesian Muslims welcome Ramadan, the fasting month which starts today, with great fanfare. It may seem like each region in this country of over 300 ethnic groups has its own way of marking the beginning of the holy month. Vespa fans in Karawang rode around the city in their heavily modified bikes that looked more like floats on a bedug parade; a kampung in Surabaya made a tumpeng (pile) of apem (rice flour pancakes) for a magengan kubro ceremony; in Boyolali, Central Java, Muslims swam in water springs to purify their body and soul in a ritual called padusan. Every celebration has both religious and traditional meaning. For Indonesian Muslims, Ramadan is not only an ascetic ritual of refraining from eating and drinking from dawn to dusk, but also a month of reflection to deepen their faith.