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West Lombok fishermen hold 'Roah Segara' to maintain harmony

Panca Nugraha

The Jakarta Post

West Lombok, West Nusa Tenggara  /  Sun, November 11, 2018  /  08:10 pm
West Lombok fishermen hold 'Roah Segara' to maintain harmony

Locals and fishermen carry offerings to the sea for larungan. (JP/Panca Nugraha)

The traditional ritual of Roah Segara was held on Nov. 4 at Kuranji Beach, Kuranji Dalang village, West Lombok regency, West Nusa Tenggara (NTB).

Roah Segara is an annual ritual held in the Muharram month of the Islamic calendar by fishermen and locals in West Lombok. Its name means “tending to the sea”, and the purpose of this tradition is to preserve nature’s balance and the harmonious relationship between humans and nature.

“Roah Segara is a tradition passed down through generations as a heritage of local wisdom. It is a way to thank God for the sustenance we’ve been provided with and to keep us away from danger,” Kuranji Dalang village head Sukadin said.

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Hundreds of locals collected crops and food on a woven bamboo tray called the dulang penamat, which they then put on the shore of Kuranji Beach early in the morning. After blessing the offerings with the Barzanji, Selakaran and Zikir prayers, they let the tray float out to sea, a step known as larungan.

The remaining non-offering food was then consumed together by the celebrants to represent the fishermen’s solidarity. The fishermen are prohibited from going to sea for three days after the ritual as a form of respect to the sea and its ecosystem.

West Lombok regency assistant regional secretary Ilham said that Roah Segara served as a warning sign against harmful activities such as dynamite fishing. “Because well-preserved beaches and seas will be beneficial to our lives,” he said. (iru/kes)

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