• Wednesday, Nov 21, 2018
  • Last Update : 01:58 pm

Diversity in celebrations of Eid in Indonesia

  • Published at 10:27 am August 23rd, 2018
Indonesia
The Eid prayers are usually held during the early hours of the day and if one aims to say his prayers at the largest mosque of south-east Asia, the Istiqlal Mosque, located at central Jakarta, he or she has to wake up, get ready and leave the house by 5:30am Dhaka Tribune/Shishir Hoque

In Indonesia, it is important to distribute the meat to remote areas and this time around, the Lombok earthquake survivors were the first priority

The night before Eid-ul-Adha, and the Eid day itself were observed in two different moods in the modern city life of Indonesia’s capital Jakarta. 

The tambourines and drums banging, guitars playing, and the children and youngsters singing in front of the central door of a mosque in the Setiabudi area of south Jakarta left the adjoining road in a festive mood. 

It was the night before Eid but as the Islamic date starts at dawn, the Eid-ul-Adha had already begun.

But it all appears different when the sun rises. 

The Eid prayers are usually held during the early hours of the day and if one aims to say his prayers at the largest mosque of south-east Asia, the Istiqlal Mosque, located at central Jakarta, he or she has to wake up, get ready and leave the house by 5:30am.

And when one arrives there at 9am, he or she would see the temporary street shops at the mosque premises and the footpaths get done with their business for the day.

An Indonesian woman selling different delicacies during Eid-ul-Adha in Jakarta Wednesday Dhaka Tribune/Shishir Hoque

There might still be some street food shops with numerous kinds of food and drink items but they are asked by the authorities to shut down within an hour or so. 

The set-ups of all local and international TV channels, who had been there to cover the event, are already packed by then.

By that time, the slaughtering of animals are already done and in a city like Jakarta, the sacrifice of animals takes place at selected indoor locations, managed by the respective mosques of the locality.

The meat is then distributed by the mosques. 

In Indonesia, it is important to distribute the meat to remote areas and this time around, the Lombok earthquake survivors were the first priority.

It appeared that the Eid had already finished for the people of Jakarta by the noon.

The street shops are asked to shut down by the authorities well before midday Dhaka Tribune/Shishir Hoque

There were not enough vehicles on the street like the other days. 

Not because it was a one-day government holiday, unlike the three-day holiday during Eid-ul-Fitr, but people usually don’t move much before the afternoon, perhaps due to hot weather.  

A quieter celebration of Eid was observed during a quick visit to the national museum of Indonesia, which was open for the visitors but barely any local gathering was seen. 

The museum allocated a temporary, special corner for the Asian Games 2018 where some rare images of the 1962 Asiad, hosted by Indonesia, were on display, along with replicas of the gold medals won by the country’s best athletes in the years gone by.  

Little more gatherings were seen at Taman Mini Indonesia Indah, an Indonesian cultural theme park located in East Jakarta where the Asiad’s kabaddi event was taking place. 

It was already afternoon but there weren’t much visitors as one would expect on such a day, even until dawn.

The tambourines and drums banging, guitars playing, and the children and youngsters singing in front of the central door of a mosque in the Setiabudi area of south Jakarta left the adjoining road in a festive mood Dhaka Tribune/Shishir Hoque

A whole new environment was explored while attending a dinner party arranged by Bangladesh Olympic Association at the Athletes Village in Kemayoran subdistrict. 

Around 15, 000 athletes and officials from 45 Asian countries are currently staying there at 15 tower buildings at the 18th edition of the Asiad.

Leaving all their hard works from the practice sessions and the matches from the day behind, the Bangladesh athletes and officials concluded their different Eid day having dinner with the BOA president.

From the dresses to the rituals, there were many things that differed from Bangladesh and Indonesia during the Eids, despite both the countries being Muslim majority. 

These differences could be seen in Africa and other Muslim countries in different continents as well, especially in celebrations of the Eid-ul-Adha.

The Muslim rulers conquered Indonesia at least 200 years after the rule of Bengal, before the Dutch colonised the islands in the late 18th century. 

A quieter celebration of Eid was observed during a quick visit to the national museum of Indonesia, which was open for the visitors but barely any local gathering was seen Dhaka Tribune/Shishir Hoque

Hindu and Buddhist rulers ruled there for many centuries prior to that. 

There are cultural similarities between many Muslim communities in southeast and east Asia. 

Singing, dancing and playing instruments on the roads of nearby mosques can also be seen among the Hui and Uighur Muslim communities of China.

Indonesia is one of the world's most diverse countries.

But even in Indonesia, different islands have different traditions of celebrating the Eids. 

Thousands of Lombok earthquake survivors Wednesday celebrated the Eid-ul-Adha in makeshift camps, praying and feasting together in open rice fields and under tents. 

Islands of Java and Sumatra have their own traditional and cultural differences in celebrating the same religious festivals.