Part of the excitement of living in a different culture than our own, is exploring and understanding the traditions of our adopted country. This weekend in Indonesia (and across the Muslim world) begins the Holy Month of Ramadan, a most significant event on the Islamic calendar.
In today’s post we share with you a range of images of people in Jakarta preparing for Ramadan. We captured these images over the last few weeks; and our research entailed wandering along local roads and through pasars; stopping to watch, asking questions and taking pictures. Observing these traditions whilst living in Jakarta has given us some unique experiences that will remain with us for years to come.
So next time you see one of the local traditons approaching on the calendar, why not take out your camera, involve the kids and create your own lasting memories of your time living in Indonesia.
Finally to all our Muslim friends we say ‘Ramadan Kareem 2017!’
In Pictures: Ramadan preparations in Jakarta
Muslims in Indonesia visit the graves of loved ones before Ramadan
It is a tradition for Indonesian Muslims to visit the graves of family members. During the visit they will clean the grave, bringing offerings of flowers and praying days before the beginning of Ramadan.
Ensuring Masjids are in pristine condition before Ramadan
Masjid’s around Jakarta have recently undergone a thorough ‘spring clean’ in preparation for their active use in the following month. All the heaviest work in the masjid is completed before Ramadan as it becomes more difficult to carry out heavy work whilst fasting.
Though its main function is as a place of prayer, the masjid or mosque plays a variety of roles throughout Ramadan. Many masjids are associated with Islamic schools and provide diverse services such as Arabic classes, Qur’anic instruction, and youth activities.
Throughout Ramadan community masjids are places where people will choose to gather at sunset to await the sound of the bedug drum which heralds the time to ‘break fast’ or ‘buka puasa.’ This is usually done with a sweet drink and sweet snacks, prayers followed by a full meal.
Pre-Ramadan food shopping
Shopping for and preparing food is an important part of preparing for Ramadan in Jakarta, as it is around the world.
There is real sense of anticipation as the Muslim community in Jakarta eagerly awaits Ramadan 2017.
Here are some useful phrases to use to wish your Muslim friends and staff well, during Ramadan.
Ramadan Mubarak: Blessed Ramadam
Ramadan Kareem: Happy / Generous Ramadam
Selamat Berbuka Puasa: Happy Fast Breaking / Enjoy your Iftar
Words: Liz Photography: a journey bespoke
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