Sumba is one of the most fascinating island of Nusa Tenggara. This island have the best Ikat cloth, and famous with the Hingi Ikat. The thread is stretched on a frame and tied with dyed resistant fibers to create the pattern before immersed in dye and sun-dried. Bold animals or human figures are its originated design. The second stage is the process of re-binding and re-dyning to make a final design. You can see the process and purchase it at Prailiu, Rende, Ngalu and Baing.
The island is also known for its ritual tribal life and
ancient culture, high peaked thatch roof houses and giant megalithic tombs.
The festival occurs during February in Lamboya and Kodi. The main activity starts several days after the full moon and coincides with the yearly arrival to the shore of strange, and multihued sea worms Nyale. The precise date of the event decided by Rato during the Wulapodu (the month of Pasola the fasting month).
Pasola is derived from the word Sola or Hola meaning a kind of a long wooden stick used as a spear to fling each other by two opponent groups of horsemen. The horses use for this ritual are usually ridden by braves and skilled selected men wearing traditional customs. In its wider and deeper meanings Pasola really not only is something worth looking on but also is something worth appreciating, for there are still other elements bound tightly behind it.
The people of Sumba believe that the ritual has a very close link to the habit of the people since it arranges the behavior and the habit of the people so that the balanced condition between the physical material needs and the mental spiritual needs can be easily created; or in other words the ritual is believed to be able to crystallize the habit and the opinion of the people so that they can live happily both in earth and in heaven. In addition to it, Pasola is also believed to have close relation to the activity in agriculture field, therefore any bloodshed (of sacrificial cattle or men participating in the game) is considered the symbol of prosperity that must exist. Without blood Pasola mean nothing to them. Those who died in the Pasola arena are believed to have broken law of tradition the fasting month.
Pasola that always takes risks, however, is acceptable by the people in a very hospitable way and sportive. Back to the top
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