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Get to know Nyusur Tanah, a death ceremony in the Sundanese tribe

Holiday Ayo - The Sundanese people know the death ceremony as Nyusur Tanah. What are the procedures for this ceremony? 

For Sundanese people, death is something special and worth remembering. Therefore, there are traditional ceremonies that accompany a person's burial procession. 


There is a ceremony called "Nyusur Tanah". Nyusur linguistically means to search. But in this case, Nyusur Tanah, according to the Sundadigi Dictionary, is alms on the day of death. 


Nyusur Tanah is still practiced today. According to the author's notes, until 2022, residents in Situraja District, Sumedang Regency will still carry out this ceremony. 


The ground sweeping ceremony is carried out shortly after the people who buried the bodies return from the graves. 


The place where this event is held is at the home of the deceased person's family. In Sunda, the Nyusur Tanah ceremony is closely related to Islam. 


This is a kind of short tahlilan ceremony, before the tahlilan takes place for 7 days, 40 days, up to 100 days of death. 


However, Nyusur Tanah is actually the final event of the entire body burial procession in Sunda. The funeral procession of the body begins with washing, shrouding and burying. 


In the book "Traditional Ceremonies of the West Java Region" published by the Department of P and K in 1984, the details of the burial ceremony for the corpse are explained, namely, starting with the ngamandian ceremony (ceremony of bathing the corpse). 


This is intended to ensure that the corpse is clean, free from dirt or impurity. Apart from that, before the corpse is buried it must be pure, therefore after being washed, the corpse is then performed ablution (ablution). 


After bathing, there is a mungkus ceremony (ceremony of shrouding the corpse). This is done, apart from being a command for Muslims, it is also intended to show that the person who died was clean and holy before facing God. 


Then there is the nyolatan ceremony (prayer ceremony for the corpse) which aims to pray for the soul of the deceased so that God will forgive all his sins and accept his good deeds.


The body was then buried. After the burial ceremony is complete, then there is a ceremony to sweep the land. Then, continue with tahlilan for 7 consecutive days. 


Tahlilan will occur again on the 40th day of death or called Matangpuluh. 


“Matangti, the tahlilan which is held commemorates the 40 days of death and sends various food and clothes to the people who have taken care of the body," wrote the site. 


Tahlilan will return on the 100th day of death, or called Natus. The activities are the same, sharing food and clothes with relatives and those who are willing to take care of the body.

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