Eid ul

Southeast Asia Eid Celebration

The festival of id is celebrated in Southeast Asia and especially in the Indonesia as national holiday and it is known as Idul fitri or more popularly as Lebaran.The festival is the national holiday in Indonesia and it is mandatory for all the establishments and factories to distribute bonus to its employees known as Tunjangan Hari Raya.It is enforced by the department of Labor of Indonesia. This amount should not be less than the salary of one month in addition to the normal salary. The non compliance of this order is a serious crime and is punishable under the law irrespective of the status and position of t he employer. This amount 

Differs from the region to region and from the establishment to establishment.

In countries like Singapore, Malaysia and Brunei the id is known as Hari Raya Aidilfitri, Hari raya Pusa.The word means the day of celebration. The festival of id is the biggest festival of Indonesia and one of the major festivals of the countries like Singapore and Malaysia. The shopping malls and arcade are filled with people busy in buying new clothes and shoes and food material to serve the guests and relatives coming for the festival and there is confusion and jams as the most of the offices and establishments are closed to let the employees celebrate the festival of Lebaran and the whole country is griped in the fever of celebrations and festivity.

The festival is celebrated with a unique tradition of mudik activity which means going to the house of relatives and friends and to their home town to ask for forgiveness for any act of misbehavior done by the individual towards relatives and friends or just to celebrate the festival with the near and dear ones. The Indonesian government is doing all out arrangements to improve the road infrastructure to accommodate the millions of travelers during the festive season but in spite of all this efforts one can witness long rows of cars and motorcycles in the jam due to heavy traffic  and it continues till the festive season.

The wealthier section of the society  take the privilege and escape to the local hotels or move to other countries of the region to avoid the ill convenience cause by the non availability of the house hold servants like maid, cook, drivers and even that of security  persons.

The region of south east Asia faces the largest transaction of the human being from one place to another .As the unskilled laborers and the other people working in the cities away from the home town try to return to their home town to celebrate the festival with their relatives and friends and ask for forgiveness or the custom of mudik is performed. 

The night just before the festival is filled with recitation of the holy scriptures in a musical note and the from the mosques also known as musallahs.In the rural areas and the cities of Indonesia sees the lighting of the lamps known as pelita or panjut and it is placed outside the house and known as lampu colok in Malaya and Singapore. The special dishes like dodol ,ketupat,cookies ,opor,rendag and as type of rice cake prepared in the bamboo is being served to the guest and the other special delicacies are also served during the festive week.

The festival of id is well accustomed with the recitation of the verses of Quran in a musical notes and the singers as well as the musicians composing the music of the verses of holy Quran are of national and international fame. The verses are known as Kaisidah or to be more precise Qasida.

The people of Indonesia greet each other with Salemat Idul Fitri and the people of Malaysia greets each other on the festive occasion with the greeting Salemat Hari Raya which means Happy id. The Muslim people also greet each other with mohan maaf lahir dan batin in Indonesia and the people of Malaysia say maaf zahir dan batin and both the greetings mean that the person should be forgiven for any physical and emotional wrong doing done to the person who is being greeted. As it is thought that the sins committed is being pardoned due to the fasting in the month of ramzan and so one should ask for forgiveness from the person against whom the sin is being committed.

The Muslims living in the Malaysia and the Indonesia prefer to wear the customary cloths on the day of the festival and the man outfit wore in the Indonesia is known as baju koko, a collar less rob with sleeves, which can be long or short, having the traditional embroidery done on the rob. Men can also choose to wear western business suit or can have the loose shirt along with a trousers. The people living in the Singapore,Brunei,Malaysia ,Southern Thailand and a part of Indonesia wear the Baju Melayu shirt and with a lower outfit known as Kain samping or songket along with head dress known as   song Kong.

The female Muslim women of Indonesian origin wear the loose fitted blouse having embroidery on it and a long skirt which may have batik designs or embroidery and jilbab or the hijab to cover the face and the entire dress is known as Kebaya curing. The Malaysian clothing of male and female is known as baju Kurung and baju kebaya. The Malaysian living in the Singapore often refers to the male outfit worn by the Muslims as baju kurung.

The non Muslims living in Malaysia prefer to dress themselves in the traditional Muslim out fit to show their respect to their Muslim colleagues, friends and relatives. This practice is very common in Indonesia where the family may have people belonging to different faiths and beliefs. An Indonesian family may have believers of Christian religion, Hindu religion, Buddhist and Muslims believers. It may have the different sects of Christianity in the same family.

Another custom which is prevalent in the Indonesia and Malaysian Muslims is visiting of the graves of their beloved ones and relatives. They recite prayer to the almighty to forgive the sins of their dead ones and for the forgiveness of sins of the living ones alike. People clean the grave and decorate the grave and they perform the tahil ceremony and also read verses from the Quran.

The Muslims belonging to the jawaian community of Indonesia practice the tradition of  kejawean .They wash the headstone with the traditional water jug known as kedni and sprinkle the scented water of jasmine  on the graves.

Another customs of the Indonesian Muslims during the festival is to visit the elderly people of the family, and to the elderly people living in the neighborhood or on the working place .To show them their respect and ask for forgiveness for the misbehave if any, in order to have a  cordial relationship. This custom is known as halal bi –halal.

The day of id is a festivity celebrated with a lot of enthusiasm by the children as they receive money from their elders in the envelop and they spend time to visit their relatives and friends and to entertain the relatives and friends in the open house which means everyone is welcome especially to their non Muslim friend and relatives. This practice of open house is more common in the big cities of Indonesia.

The festivity of  the festival is marked with the lightning of the bamboo cannon known as meriam bamboo ramadhan.They use kerosene oil to light the cannon and some people also use crackers to celebrate the festivity and it may cause accident too for the user, viewer or for the passer by. People make their own cannon by filling the bamboo tubes of the radius of 2to 5cm and of the height of 13to23 ft with calcium carbide and heated kerosene and then they ignite the bamboo with matches.

The celebration with crackers in the morning in the month of Ramadan is banned in many locality as it disturbs the neighbors and the children in Malaysia is being offered the money by their elders known as duit raya.

The non Muslims living in the Philippines know the festival of id as wakasng Ramadan which means the end of Ramadan and now the festival is being recognized by the Philippines Government as national holiday, and it is the first Christian country to do so. This law is being made to appreciate the harmonious relationship among the Muslims and non Muslims communities of the country. The first Eidul fitri after the declaration of the day as national holiday was celeb rated by the Muslims.

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