Why Buffalo Considered As Prominently Animals For Torajans?

Category  : History and Culture 

The Buffalo's (aka.''Tedong'' in Torajan language), that classified as water buffalo.

"Tedong Toraja" - Water Buffalo

When you visit Toraja, especially before you reached Rantepao (capital of North Toraja), for the first you will find the buffalo statue that called "Tedong Bonga". Located in Rura's area. The statue describing a man with pose was guided a buffalo. That's the symbol that choosen by local government to welcome their guests. As if want to give the best for the guest. 

Rantepao [Toraja] - Tedong Bonga  Statue

The Tedong Bonga was the best buffalo type in these society.
So, why must be the buffalo?
Toraja Buffalo - Tedong Bonga

Toraja people consider buffalo as the symbol of prosperities. Thus, buffalo will always be subject property (Tedong Garonto'eanan)

In former times, most assessments and transactions always votes with the value of buffalo. Sales and purchase activities, exchange of goods trade, in the value of legal marriage often votes with value of buffalo.
Similarly, in social status to distinguish a person, be determined based on the number of buffaloes owned by someone.

The most high status called Tana' Bulaan must has 24 buffaloes or more.
Also, the buffaloes usually was animal that most major to sacrificed in both of kind of Toraja traditional ritual ceremonies, such as event of:

However, sacrificing buffalo can only take place during the ritual worship to 'Puang Matua' ( The God), the ritual was called "Merauk_" and "Ma'bua'_". Whereas in "Deata" and "To Membali Puang" not be offered (religious of Aluk To Dolo)
Nowadays, "Merauk_" and "Ma'bua'_" still running at ceremony when dedication of establishment or renewal Tongkonan (ancestral house).

Rambu Solo' ritual
According to the religious of Torajan traditionally, the soul of the deceased will need many buffalo to make the journey will be quicker to arrive at Puya (the land of soul). So, they slaugthering buffalo as symbol of sacrifice to respecting the deceased.

[Toraja Buffalo] Ma'Tinggoro Tedong -  Ritual

Here's a type of buffalo (water buffalo) that usually found in entire ceremony based on naming provided by Torajan.

Each, have different price, depending on the skin color and shape of horn:
  • Tedong Bonga
Tedong Bonga - Toraja expensive buffalo
  • Tedong Bonga ulu
Toraja Buffalo - Tedong Bonga Ulu
  • Tedong Bonga Sorik
  • Tedong Todi'
  • Tedong Sambao'

  • Tedong Balian


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1 comment:

  1. Thats ridiculous the slaughter of any animal for enjoyment!!


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