Gawea Sowa or what is more commonly known today as Gawai Dayak has long been an integral part of the culture of the Bidayuh folks. For them, as it is for the Iban and other Dayak folks observing it, Gawai marks the end of the rice harvest season and is held to celebrate a bountiful yield.
On June 1 every year the Dayak people in Sarawak, who are traditionally farmers celebrate Gawai Dayak. It is a day to give thanks to the gods after the rice harvesting season is over.
Given the different circumstances this year, we don’t have the luxury of balik kampung to reunite with our family for Raya celebration. But don’t let that bring your spirit down. You can still have an awesome Hari Raya celebration, #stayathome style. Here are some last-minute ideas for a memorable Raya at home.
The Conditioned Movement Control Order (CMCO) certainly is not a stopping factor for the Dayak folks here in Sarawak to get into a full-on Gawai mode. Though there will be no big Gawai celebrations and no ngabang (visiting) this year, many are still preparing to celebrate the coming Gawai Dayak on June 1. But instead of having open house, everyone will be celebrating at home with their family.
Despite a plethora of new variations of Raya classics as well as newly created recipes that have popped up this CMCO period, those who celebrate Hari Raya Aidilfitri are still including kuih raya and biscuits that have been everyone’s favourites every time Hari Raya Aidilfitri comes around. Here are some of those must-have Hari Raya Aidilfitri kuih and biscuits…
Although Hari Raya is observed globally, how it is celebrated varies in different parts of the world. Sarawak itself has several distinguishing cultural traditions that set it apart from Raya celebrations in Peninsular Malaysia. In Sarawak, the Muslims are predominantly Malay and Melanau.