ASMAT TRIBE....An Incarnation of The God

Asmat tribe is the largest tribe among the many tribes that exist in West Papua and spread and inhabit the area around the coast of Arafuru and Jayawijaya mountain, with a fairly hefty terrain considering the occupied area is the jungle and swamps. Now usually, about 100 to 1000 people live in one village. Each village has one Bujang house and many family homes. Bujang house used for traditional and religious ceremonies. Family homes are inhabited by two to three families, which have their own bathroom and kitchen. Today, there are approximately 70.000 Asmat people live in Indonesia with the majority of children are familiar with education by going to school.

BASIC BELIEFS, tribal customs Asmat recognize that they're the Gods emanate from the mystical world whose location is where the sun sank every afternoon. They were convinced when his ancestors in the past made landfall on earth in the mountain. Besides, Asmat people also believe that in its territory there are three kinds of spirits, which has good character, evil and evil but dead. Based on the mythology of the Asmat community dwelling in the bay of flamingo, and the God was name Fumiripitis. Asmat people are convinced that the environment of human dwelling is also silent the various spirits that they share in three groups :

  • Yi – ow or the spirit of a good ancestor especially for his offspring
  • Osbopan or evil spirits are thought to be occupants of certain kinds
  • Dambin – Ow or demon evil who died silly
  • RELIGION, of Asmat society is Christian and animism that is a teaching and practice of balance of nature and worship to spirit of dead or sculpture. For them, sago worm is an important part of their ritual process.
    WOOD CARVING, Some ornaments or motifs that are often used and become the main theme in the sculpture sculpting process conducted by the tribe asmat residents is about the ancestors of their tribe, commonly called with the mbis.
    TRADITIONAL HOUSE, traditional house of Asmat tribe is JEW with length up to 25 meters. Until now still encountered this traditional house if we visit the Asmat hinterland, even still there are among those who build their house on the tree.
    MUMMY, Asmat tribe does noe bury a dead person but they will preserve those dead body to remain memorable and in honor for that person. Preservation of the dead body is only done to people who are considered meritorious or have a major influence in their social life.
    TRADISIONAL VILLAGE, They live in a group af clan with 100 to 1000 person in one village. The man will hunt together to looking for foods for their living, and the women will cook it. They live in harmony each other and make nature as their life source for generations.
    ART OF ASMAT, one of the things that make Asmat tribe famous is from their art especially wood carving art. Their wooden carved has been recognized by the world and many owned by international collectors for this masterpieces.
    STONE COOKING, Asmat people use stones and wood to cook and roasted and put the meat (usually pig) inside. They are only didn't have enough technology and facilities for cooking even they are know how to cook well to eat good and delicious foods.
    ASMat TRIBE, The largest of the tribal community in West Papua
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    LIVELIHOODS, survival and feeding habits between tribes with each other in the citak-mitak district area are almost identical. Asmat tribe habit of daily living in the hunt is a hunting of forest animals such as snakes, cassowaries, birds, wild boar and so on. They are also always looking for sagu as the staple foods and the fisherman looking for for fish and shrimp to eat. Live of these three tribes has changed.
    In daily life of Asmat people working in surrounding their environment, especially to find food by hunting or gardening which of course still use traditional and simple method. Asmat cuisine is not like ours, for them sago is the special cuisine. But everyday they only rast fish or meat of animals.
    In the life of Asmat tribe, the stones we used to see on the streets are very precious for them. Even the stones can be used as dowry. It's because the shelter of the Asmat tribe makes up the swamp that makes it very difficult to find stones that are very useful for them to make axes, hammers and so on.

    Great ceremonies concerning the whole village community which always related to the ancestor spirit of honor as follow :

  • Mbismbu ( pole disposal )
  • Yentpokmbu ( manufacture and inauguration of the JEW house )
  • Tsyimbu ( the making and inauguration of the dimples )
  • Yamasy pokumbu ( the shield ceremony )
  • Mbipokumbu ( the mask ceremony )
  • Asmat tribe believes that before entering the heaven, the spirits of the dead will disturb humans. Disorders can be diseases, disasters and even war. Then for the sake of saving people and redeeming the spirits, those who are still living make sculptures and staged parties such as mbis statue party, masquerade party, boat party and caterpillar sago party.

    Please read Papua Tribal Living below :
    1. Baliem Valley Festival
    2. Korowai and Kombai Tribe, People of the Sky
    3. Dani Tribe, People of The Valley
    4. And other Papua tribes.

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