All about weddings

Blogs, Ethical trading & business, Labour rights, Women's rights article written on the 09 Sep 2010

English / Bahasa
I recently attended a friend’s wedding ceremony. The couple come from different ethnic backgrounds, which made this ceremony quite unique. The bride and groom had to change into four different outfits to pay their respects to each of the parents. They wore Sundanese dress (orange), Javanese dress (green), Lampung and Sumatra dress. The couple also wore an Arabic costume for ‘betamat’ which a tradition of reading prayers from al-Qur’ān. This ceremony isn’t compulsory but it’s often held on the night of the wedding. The point is for couple and community to read al-Qur’ān together.

Weddings are very important in our culture and people will often spend a lot of money on a wedding party. Because of the high costs involved, we sometimes have to borrow money, or use the village micro-finance system known as Arisan. Arisan is group of people (usually women) who save money collectively by making regular contributions. After the money is collected, members of the group are chosen to receive the funds until everyone has had a turn.

When it came time for my older brother to get married I helped a lot to fund the ceremony. I was worried because the amount of money involved was quite a lot. But this was my eldest brother’s wedding and very important to our family.

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Related Indonesian Entry – Bahasa Indonesia

Mengenai upacara pernikahan

Kemarin saya menghadiri upacara pernikahan teman saya. Pasangan yang kawin ini berbeda suku, orangtuanya juga berbeda suku. Jadi pengantinnya sampai 4 kali berganti pakaian adat untuk menghormati orangtua. Pakaian Sunda (baju orange), Jawa (baju hijau), Lampung, dan Sumatra. Mereka juga memakai kostum Arab untuk tradisi ‘betamat’, acara yang tidak diharuskan, tapi biasanya dilakukan malam hari. Intinya acara ini adalah membaca Alquran bersama-sama.

Upacara pernikahan amat penting dalam budaya kami, sehingga orang sering mengeluarkan biaya yang sangat tinggi untuk pesta pernikahan. Karena biayanya begitu tinggi, terkadang kami harus pinjam uang atau mengikuti arisan. Arisan adalah kelompok orang yang mengumpul uang secara teratur pada tiap-tiap periode tertentu. Setelah uang terkumpul, salah satu dari anggota kelompok akan dipilih sebagai penerima dana itu secara bergantian, sampai semua mendapat giliran.

Saat kakak saya mau menikah, saya ikut membiayai upacaranya. Pada saat itu saya khawatir karena jumlah uang yang dibutuhkan begitu banyak. Tapi itu upacara pernikahan anak pertama dalam keluarga kami, dan itu dianggap sangat penting.