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Jakarta Post

Harmony with ‘ketupat’.

Wed, June 27, 2018   /   09:31 am
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    Standing tall: Just beside the feasting villagers is a rice cake offering known as gunungan ketupat. JP/Maksum Nur Fauzan

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    Gathering: Villagers from Mlambong village in Boyolali, Central Java, get together and to enjoy a feast during the Lebaran Sapi celebration. JP/Maksum Nur Fauzan

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    Digging in: A villager peels coconut leaves off the famous rice cake known as ketupat. JP/Maksum Nur Fauzan

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    Feel the vibe: A local artist performs a mask dance during the Lebaran Sapi celebration. JP/Maksum Nur Fauzan

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    Cattle: A cow with dye and writing on its body will soon be paraded around Mlambong village. The writing on the cow is translated as “currently being pretty”. JP/Maksum Nur Fauzan

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    For the memories: Young villagers pose together for a photo beside a decorated cow. JP/Maksum Nur Fauzan

Maksum Nur Fauzan

Villagers march while carrying ritual meals comprising ketupat (boiled rice cakes wrapped in coconut leaves) and various other dishes to the hub of Mlambong village in Boyolali, Central Java.

The march marked the beginning of the villagers’ unique cow parade called

Lebaran Sapi to mark Syawalan, a celebration that usually takes place within a week of Idul Fitri.

After holding prayers and greeting one another, the villagers indulged in a feast along the main road.

At the end of the feast, they released their cows, some of which wore pretty make up and dyes on their torso.

The villagers and their cows along with Gunungan Ketupat (rice cake offerings) then paraded around the village, creating a spectacle for everyone else watching on.

“This tradition is preserved as the main event of Idul Fitri and a manifestation of gratitude for our thriving cattle breeding and harmonious relationships among villagers, while maintaining spiritual bonds with local people working outside of this village,” said Hadi Sutarno, an elder and community leader of the village.