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Home » Ritual and Ceremony

The Unique Ngerebeg Ceremony  

by on Tuesday, 24 November 20096 Comments | 1,753 views


Hundreds of children, mostly of 3 to 15 years of age, gathered in the inner courtyard of Duwur Bingin Temple, in Tegalalang village on Wednesday (4/22/09). They dressed in traditional clothes some of them were bare-chested. They had painted their faces and bodies with colorful images and pattern and each of them carried a slender staff made from the branch of palm, decorated with colorful flowers and young coconut leaves. They are the participants of Ngerebeg ritual.

The Ngerebeg ritual began with distribution of deity’s blessing by magibung ritual (eating collectively); 6 to 8 participants formed a group, they sit together around a set of food and ate it together. After megibung, they lined up in front of the temple to receive purification ritual with sprinkling of holy water by the priest. Then the noisy procession of freakishly decorated children began to hit the street of Tegalalang village.

The screams of more than five hundreds children turned the quiet village into a wild hullabaloo. They paraded down the main street and stopped sometimes in front of temples to pay homage. The parents lined up on the side of the street, encouraging their children to scream and distributing refreshment to them. The procession lasted for three hours and ended up at Duwur Bingin temple.

Ngerebeg ritual is a preliminary ritual for the anniversary ceremony of Duur Bingin Temple. This ritual enacts the journey of Duwur Bingin Deity’s vassals. The children represent Panjak hana-tan hana (exist-non exist vassal). Panjak hana-tan hana refers to various supernatural beings, range from the Bhuta Kala (spirits of Nature) to the Wong Samar (human-like residents of isolated gorges and deep jungles). This ritual serves to purify the village through the noisy parade of scary-looking children it is believed that supernatural beings will be pacified so they will not disrupt the upcoming temple anniversary ceremony.

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