Tedhak Siten, Celebrating the First Time a Child Touches the Ground

Image by Mahya

Image credit: Mahya

By: Sahrudin@SahrudinSaja

IT IS an observance of a child’s very first moment walking on the ground.

Tedhak siten (Javanese) or turun tanah (Bahasa Indonesia) literally means to touch the ground.

It is carried out when the baby turns 7 months old.

Image by Mahya

Image credit: Mahya

A chicken cage; simple stairs made from sugar cane; several kinds of flowers; and various types of traditional cakes and food are common things needed for the ceremony.

One of the most eagerly-awaited in tedhak siten is when the child selects one of a few things put inside the chicken cage.

Image by Mahya

Image credit: Mahya

Some parents believe that an item chosen by a baby through this ritual, could give a view of his/her future occupation or position.

If a child chooses a plastic hoe or gardening toys from the cage, then in the future he/she may be a farmer, or even an agriculture expert.

If he/she picks a cake, it can be seen as a sign of his/her future career: a cook, or a restaurant owner…***[alwaysmagelang@gmail.com]

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