SALCRA Dishes Out Dividends
Firstly one wonders what randau pemansang
means. Directly translated, it means Development Discussion. That was the weekend assignment which I attended last Sunday in Sri Aman at the Civic Centre. It was a lovely Sunday as the flood situation in this southern area has improved and its a time to rebuild for those affected by the flood. But not for those in the nothern region at this point in time. The Randau Pemansang was organised by SALCRA
. Detailed coverage of this event is available in the online news below:Sri Aman News BlogspotBorneo Post Online
An interesting segment of the event for the day was the miring ceremony. One wonders what this is all about - but the inclusion of this traditional practice is quite refreshing for if one steps into a longhouse during any festive occassion or events there is a tendency that you may be invited to perform the miring ceremony, together with the longhouse elders.
The Randau Pemansang featured this elaborate 'Piring' prepared by the VIP guests
The arrival of the VIP guests were greeted by the traditional layout in preparation for an elaborate Miring Ceremony.
Simple order yet not so simple ceremony - the Miring Ceremony is set to start with the 'Miring' items arranged in proper order for the VVIP guests to decorate or prepare the 'piring' (offerings).
For want of a simple description I surfed Rubber Seed
and picked this decription : "A Miring is an elaborated and very often colourful and noisy ceremony performed to applease the gods and the spirits and to receive blessings from them. Depending on the significance of the ceremony, a Miring could be attended by just a few people of a family and his close relatives to several thousand people involving several communities. Grand Miring ceremonies are performed during the Gawai Dayak (Iban Harvest Festival), Gawai Antu ( festival to remember the dead) and in modern times,the welcoming of important guests such as a government minister or dignitary
The Deputy Chief Minister performing the chants over the Pirings with a rooster in hand. With him on his right is Council Member for Lingga YB Hajjah Simoi Peri, YB Minister Dato Sri James Masing, YB Assistant Minister Datuk Francis Harden and SALCRA boss, Datu Vasco Sabat Singkang (blue tie)
As decribed again by Rubber Seed's blog "The rooster plays a more different role and is always more lucky as its life will sometimes be spared in the ceremony. After two or more village elders or the guests of honor have chanted poems of good omen while waving the rooster in front of the gathered crowd, the cockscomb is cut slightly to obtain its blood as offering to the gods and spirits. The rooster may be killed for the cooking pot or will be freed."
From left: YB Encik Mong Dagang (Council Member for Bukit Bengunan), YB Dr. Johnnical Rayong (Council Member for Engkilili), YB Encik Snowdon Lawan (Council Member for Balai Ringin), YB Tuan Masir Kujat (Member of Parliament for Sri Aman) and Encik abang Shamshudin, Tuan Resident for Sri Aman
Preparing the piring also requires some skill and experience too. Here our Deputy Chief Minister shows his ability in the preparation. The complex-simple arrangement of the final product - some sort of a special presentation - is used to appease the spirits (according to the olden day beliefs). One can take the simple way out and try to dump all those items into the 'offering' basket but the way it is decorated matters most as people will compare yours to the next beside you. For some who practice miring now, it is a presentation to the Almighty Powers according to one's own beliefs. It is hoped that favorable blessings will be enjoyed by the Iban community during those days.
And so it was for most of the longhouse folks who attended SALCRA's dividend's handout the'miring' performed can be a form of saying 'thank you' to the spirits of Iban folklore as they enjoy the dividends for their participation in the oil palm plantation scheme. Sometimes the pretty maidens of the Panggau Libau spiritual world will grant you your request.
Maybe it looks elaborate, maybe it looks complicated but sometimes what you wish for in these traditional offering ceremonies tend to come true. But I will settle for the pretty maidens of the SALCRA event management team. Congrats for a job well done.
Your batik is nice. Where can I get one like that?
Headsteadi - kainnya ada di kawasan India Street Kuching :)
em, think its good that the ministers still adhere to the local 'adat'.. it shows a lot of their personality and how down to earth they are.
We should never forget our roots once we are on top.. but sadly, some of those up above do tend to do just that.