This is a small part that can be found in a series of traditional Palembang wedding processions. It is a very interesting fact when modernization and the minimalist era have penetrated almost all aspects of life, including wedding processions, there are still some people who still firmly maintain traditions and culture. This is also proof that the majesty of customs is timeless, and does not recognize the social status of the individual.
1. Investigation of the Girl
The prospective bride still has to be “investigated” by a representative from the family of the prospective groom. The meaning of the word “investigate” does not symbolize suspicion, but rather the approach taken by the prospective groom’s family and ensures that no one has proposed a proposal. This procession is known as Madik, derived from the Javanese Kawi language which means approaching or approaching.
2. Fencing the Girl
After the Madik process is successful, the prospective bride is “fenced off”. This traditional process is called Menggung or Senggung which comes from the Old Javanese language which means “fence”. This procession aims so that the girl is no longer disturbed by the senggung (compatriot of the weasel) as a metaphor for not being disturbed by other men. The male extended family sends an official envoy to the girl’s family by bringing a tenong (delivery basket) or sangkek made of woven bamboo in a round or square shape, wrapped in gold-embroidered batik cloth containing food, it can also be in the form of eggs, flour, or butter according to family circumstances. the girl.
3. Bind the Girl
If the sengggung process has reached the target, the male family still has to return with 3 tenong, each containing flour, sugar, and duck eggs. With this traditional process of Ngebet, it means that both families have Nemuke Kato or agreed that the girl has been “tied” by the man. As a sign of the bond between the two, the man gives another gift in the form of cloth, clothing, or valuable objects such as rings, necklaces, or bracelets.
4. Deliberation among the Great Families
The process, which is called Berasan, comes from the Malay word which means deliberation. The two extended families determine what the women will ask for and what the men will give. This is an opportunity for the female side to be introduced to the male family. The atmosphere of Berasan was enlivened with rhymes and pleasantries. After the meal, the two families determine all the requirements for marriage, both traditional and religious. It is at this time that the date for Mutuske Kato is set.
5. Determining the Requirements and Procedures for the Implementation of Marriage
If the agreement is based on religious law, it means that both parties agree on the dowry or dowry. Meanwhile, according to customs, both parties will agree on what customs will be carried out, because each has its own equipment and requirements.
6. Determining the Wedding Day and Uploading
That is right when the light of the moon is beautiful shining on the earth, so that its light becomes the light of the life of the bride and groom. This customary process is called Mutuske Kato, when the family decides on Nganterke Belanjo Day, Wedding Day, Mupload, Nyemputi and Nganter Bride, Ngalie Turon, Chat or Mandi Simburan or Beratib. During this customary process, the man’s family came to the woman’s side with 7 tenong containing sugar, flour, duck eggs, bananas, and other fruits. In addition to making some decisions, the men also provide the customary requirements that have been agreed upon at the Berasan event. Mutuske Kato closed with a prayer of salvation and a request to God so that the marriage would run smoothly. Followed by the prostrate ceremony of the prospective bride to the prospective mother-in-law, who was rewarded with a gift of gold as a sign of love. When the envoy from the male side wanted to go home, the 7 tenong on the male side were exchanged by the female side with fillings of various typical Palembang snacks to take home.
This tradition, which is similar to the Javanese tradition, is called Nganterke Belanjo. This procession is mostly done by women, while men only accompany it. The form of gegawaan, which the Palembang community calls “ngelamar custom”, is brought by the men (according to the agreement) for the women, including a yellow ponjen containing belanjo (shopping money) placed in a tray, a yellow ponjen larger in size. small pieces containing belanjo money, 24 smaller yellow ponjens containing metal coins as bridesmaids for belanjo money, a songket scarf, songket brackets clothes, a yellow ponjen filled with “weigh the bride” money, 12 trays containing various kinds of money. various items for party needs, as well as bunches of flowers covered with lacy embroidered cloth. In addition, a request or suggestion that has been determined at Mutuske Kato is also delivered, which is one of the customary conditions for the implementation of marriage according to the agreement.
8. Performing Rituals
The bride and groom usually perform several rituals that are believed to be efficacious for health and beauty, as well as magical symbols influenced by traditional beliefs. The series of rituals starts from betangas, which is a steam bath, then there is powder, then dating, which is given henna (a type of nail polish) on all fingernails and toenails, as well as the palms of the hands and soles of the feet, called pelipit. The red effect on henna is useful to ward off all kinds of spirits, and henna itself is believed to have magical powers to give fertility to the bride.
9. Uniting a couple of lovers into husband and wife
This ceremony is intended as a sign of entering married life. According to customary rules, it should be carried out at the prospective groom’s house. But in accordance with the development of the times, the ceremony which is commonly referred to as the marriage contract ceremony can be carried out at the house of the prospective bride and is said to be a “passenger marriage”. The condition is, if the marriage contract takes place before the Mupload event, then the female envoy first brings the keris to the male residence.
10. Balancing and Harmonizing Both Bride and Groom
The ceremony, which is the culmination of a series of traditional Palembang wedding events, involves many families of the bride and groom, is attended by invited guests and is held at the bride’s family home. This is what is referred to as Mupload, which means that the bride and groom live a married life that is always balanced or considerate, harmonious, and peaceful.