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Come to enjoy the indigenous people of Sundanese villagers of Kasepuhan Ciptagelar in Ciptagelar Village, who live peacefully in balancing the tradition and modern life, beautiful nature and traditional kingdom order.  

The Kasepuhan Ciptagelar is a traditional Sundanese community that counts around 5.300 people living in the foggy mountains of West Java, Indonesia. Its name comes from the Sundanese word sepuh, which means “old” and refers to a way of living based on ancestral traditions. Such traditions laid the foundation of the local community, whose main subsistence depends on the cultivation of rice.

Located at 1.400 meters above the sea level, the Ciptagelar village is one of the eight traditional villages in West Java. The local community is worldly celebrated for its wisdom, rituals and ancestral values and for the way they live in close harmony with nature to protect the environment.

Seren Taun, an annual rice harvest festival in Ciptagelar Village

Ciptagelar was also the first village connected to the Internet, which led artist and activist Yoyo Yogasmana to share his knowledge to preserve over 130 existing rice varieties without any use of insecticides with the digital domain

In addition, indigenous peoples in Ciptagelar Village are seen as a group of people who are able to balance humans and nature. Especially in the case of the management of forests that are around settlements as a source of life. One of them, the order that can not be abandoned in the management of agriculture.

Although as a group of people who are still strong hold firm to protect ancestral customs. But not dismissing technological progress. Even technology has now been enjoyed as part of the fabric of society.

The entry of electricity from the results of expertise in assembling technology transfer by the figure of Abah Ugi Sugriwa Raka Siwi, the community leader. From the results of the ability to absorb technology, said Ugi, its citizens are now able to enjoy electricity. By optimizing the existence of rivers around residential areas, they move turbines of power plants so that hundreds of citizens can enjoy electricity.

“Although it is still very simple, Kasepuhan Ciptagelar already has its own local TV station called Ciga TV,” he said.

In principle, said Ugi, Kasepuhan Ciptagelar residents do not close themselves to outside innovation. But its existence must be harmonized with traditional village life. Like the use of electronic goods. But the principle of firmly maintaining the traditions and culture of the predecessor can be a counterweight to the order of life so as not to be eroded and carried by the flow of modernization.

If some people usually prefer to take advantage of the progress of agricultural technology that is increasingly developing. But not for the people of Ciptagelar. They have traditionally maintained and preserved ancestral traditions.

The order and balance of the universe is absolute. The existence of malapateka or disaster according to the views of Kasepuhan residents is as a result of the disturbed balance and regularity of the universe. “While the task of humans is to maintain and maintain the balance of the relationships of various elements that exist in this universe,” he said.

Seren Taun Festival

Among hundreds of rituals and ceremonies in Cipta Gelar Village, Seren Taun Festival is the most popular. Seren Taun is an annual traditional Sundanese rice harvest festival and ceremony. The festival was originally held to mark the new agriculture year in the Sundanese ancient calendar as well as thanks giving for the blessings of the abundance rice harvest, and also to pray for the next successful harvest. Seren Taun demonstrates the Sundanese agricultural way of life, and is held in high regard in Sundanese traditional villages, as the festival draw thousands Sundanese villagers to participate as well as Indonesian or foreign visitors.  Traditional arts and dance performances are also part of this festival.

Author : Meldy Senduk

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