Gaiety Indonesia | Ramadan and Nyepi moments of reflection : Religious Affair Minister
Ramadan and Nyepi moments of reflection : Religious Affair Minister :

Ramadan and Nyepi moments of reflection : Religious Affair Minister

/ Indonesia Today

Jakarta (GAIETY) - Upcoming Hindu holy silence day, known as Nyepi, and Islamic holy month Ramadan serve as momentum to endorse self-reflection and mutual respect for different religious rituals and traditions, Religious Affairs Minister Yaqut Cholil Qoumas said.

Nyepi falls on March 11, while the start of Ramadan may fall on either March 11 or 12.

"Catur Brata Penyepian (Four Prohibitions during Seclusion) encourages Hindus to contemplate, while fasting during Ramadan encourages Muslims to self-reflect. Hence, the two moments provide opportunities to conduct introspection," he noted in a statement from his office on Sunday.

He explained that Hindus prepare for their holy day with the Tawur Agung Kesanga ceremony and Ogoh-ogoh parades. Simultaneously, Muslims welcome Ramadan by holding Tarhib Ramadan activities and performing Qiyam al-Lail or night prayers.

To abide by Catur Brata Penyepian, he said, Hindus will refrain from lighting fires, working, traveling, and having fun during the silence day. Meanwhile, Muslims will observe Ramadan through fasting, he added.

Qoumas emphasized the importance of mutual respect, considering that Nyepi and Ramadan involve contrasting religious practices.

While the Nyepi Day is inseparable from seclusion and silence, the holy Ramadan month encourages Muslims to intensify prayers within religious festivities, he pointed out.

Since Ogoh-ogoh parades and Tarhib Ramadan activities are expected to take place at the same time, Qoumas urged regional religious services to coordinate with interfaith harmony forums and regional leaders to maintain tolerance during the holding of the events.

He also extended his best wishes to all Hindus, expressing hope that this year's Nyepi Day will drive them to further strengthen their bonds with God, fellow Indonesians, and the environment.

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