Community customs, rites, and celebrations in Gorontalo are Tumbilotohe, Dayango/ Wumbungo, Dikili, Pulanga, Molalunga, Momuhuto, Molontalo, Mohuntingo, Molo’opu, Tahuda.
Tumbilotohe comes from the Gorontalo language, namely tumbilo and tohe. Tumbilo means to install, and tohe means lamp. Tumbilatohe is a celebration in the form of installing lights in the courtyards of people's houses and on the streets, especially the road to the mosque which marks the end of Ramadan in Gorontalo. This celebration is carried out on the last 3 (three) nights before Eid al-Fitr. The installation of lights starts from sunset until dawn.
This tradition is thought to have been going on since the 15th century. At that time the lighting was still in the form of wango-wango, which is a lighting tool made of wamuta or sheath which was mashed and sharpened, then burned. In the following years, lighting equipment began to use tohe tutu or resin, which is a kind of solid gum that will glow for a long time when burned. In the following years, using a lamp that uses a wick of cotton and coconut oil, using containers such as clams, a type of shellfish, and papaya which is cut in half, and is called padamala. Along with the times, the lamp material for lighting has been replaced with kerosene until now. To make this tradition even more lively, thousands of electric lights are often added.
Dayango/Wumbungo is a kind of dance where dancers can dance on embers and are always associated with supernatural powers. This ritual concerns the safety and prosperity of the people in Gorontalo, especially avoiding disease, disaster, and success in producing good agricultural products.
In the Dayango ritual there is a song called mowumbungo. Dayango rituals are accompanied by a musical instrument called antunga. The dancers use dance clothes, headbands and waistbands. The dancer's whole body will tremble due to being possessed by spirits.
Dayango dancers (Podayango) are dancing in a state of unconsciousness (ilopasia) to loud music. Dayango is the belief of the pre-Islamic Gorontalo community. This ritual is now very difficult to find because it is considered not in accordance with the religion adopted by today's society.
Dikili is a tradition carried out by the people of Gorontalo to accompany the Maulidan ceremony (commemoration of the birthday of the Prophet Muhammad). Dikili as an ancestral relic, the contents are handwritten in a script in the form of expressions and stories that are presented through songs. The manuscripts distributed in the community consist of Arabic, Indonesian and Gorontalo languages.
The content of the manuscript consists of two forms, namely the form of poetry and the form of prose (story). This tradition has been carried out since ancient times. Dikli is held every 12 Rabiul Awal until the end of the month. Implementation time at night takes about 16 to 17 hours. People who do dikili sing about 318 words of worship to the Prophet Muhammad in 87 variations of songs and read 16 stories about the birth of the Prophet Muhammad and advice on religion.
After the implementation of dikili and prayer, money or food is distributed (toyopo and walima) to the people who do the dikili. The social function is reflected in the participation of the community who voluntarily make donations in the form of money or offerings to be distributed. In addition, its function is as entertainment, religion, and education.
Pulanga is a traditional ceremony of the Gorontalo people associated with the coronation ceremony. Pulanga is in the form of giving customary titles to people who are still alive, usually given to those who occupy important positions starting from the sub-district, regional and even provincial levels.
Pulanga basically measures a person in his position as a source of role models in every activity as a leader who is trusted by the people. Pulanga contains a heavy responsibility for those who receive the title, not only in this world but also in the hereafter. It is highly recommended that a leader is also a religious person so that considerations and policies are balanced between thoughts and Islamic law.
Molalunga is a traditional ceremony of the Gorontalo people associated with funerals. This activity has been a community tradition since ancient times which is still maintained until now. In its implementation, the funeral is carried out in an integrated manner between customs and the Islamic religion. There is an understanding for the community that if the funeral is carried out in full, complete and perfect custom, it will affect the safety of the deceased or the deceased in the grave.
Islam as the religion of the majority of the people of Gorontalo is believed that there are 4 obligations towards the corpse, namely bathing, fanning, praying and burying the corpse. Organizing these four things for the Muslim community is fardlu kifayah. In accordance with the fact, these four things are developed in customary procedures and prevailing habits, which can be judged as the ethics of civilization.
Momuhuto is a tradition of the Gorontalo tribe since ancient times as a means used for prospective brides to prepare themselves fully for marriage. Preparation in the sense of cleaning the body as well as cleaning oneself spiritually through religious development, mental attitude and politeness as a wife.
In ancient times, momuhuto was held for 40 days before the wedding day, but after considering all aspects, this event was held for a day or more and the emphasis was on preserving it. The procession of the implementation of the Momuhuto ceremony through the traditional stages of Momonto, Molungudu, Momuhuto and Mopoduta'a to pingge.
Molonthalo is a traditional salvation ceremony that marks the seventh month of pregnancy. The Molonthalo traditional ceremony is carried out not only as a standardized tradition and must be preserved, more than that it is believed to be a sacred ceremony on the basis of seeking blessings for the presence of a new family member.
The Molontalo custom is a statement from the husband's family that the first pregnancy is a fulfilled hope for the continuation of the offspring of a legal marriage. The Molonthalo event is a message to the family from both sides, that the wife is truly pure, and is an example and encouragement for other girls to protect themselves and their honor from the temptations of the world.
The Molonthalo event is an expression of gratitude for God's blessings that have been given to a husband and wife through "Ngadi Salawati" (salawat prayer), so that the birth of the baby will be easy. The Molonthalo event is the strengthening of the life of a husband and wife welcoming the baby, as the successor to their offspring and physical and mental preparation to become good fathers and mothers by maintaining the continuity of the household which is symbolized by eating bribes.
Mohuntingo is a traditional ritual of cutting hair for girls and boys aged 7-40 days. This mohuntingo ritual is known as a celebration ritual for the gratitude of parents for the birth of their child. There is oral literature in the mohuntingo procession, namely tinilo hunthingo. Tinilo mohuntingo is a Gorontalo language literary text.
Mohuntingo is synonymous with mongakiki (aqiqah) which is the event of slaughtering an animal (goat) on the day of shaving the hair of a newborn child. The mohuntingo traditional event contains elements of religious education and health protection. Judging from the meaning of language as in tinilo poetry and traditional objects, they have educational values.
Molo'opu means picking up (holding) an official who has just been appointed in a certain position from his own home to occupy the house of office carried out by custom. The traditional molo'opu ceremony is a traditional pick-up ceremony for government officials in the Gorontalo area to occupy the office (Yiladia).
The traditional equipment prepared in the form of alikusu (traditional gate), tolitihu (traditional stairs), tambibala (custom court place), lale (janur) and other cultural objects. The implementation of the traditional molo'opu ceremony means that the officials who are invited (ta tilo'opu) in carrying out their duties must actually carry out according to the rules without violating customary provisions, especially religion.
Tahuda is one type of Gorontalo oral poetry in the category of oral poetry group that uses wise words. Tahuda is more in the form of advice for the people or for the public. The delivery of Tahuda does not have to go through a traditional ceremony. Those who convey the tauda are generally old people. Tahuda relates to the advice of the ancient kings, which is copied or conveyed by traditional holders now, to be conveyed to the people.
In ancient times, Tahuda was advice to the crowned king, which was spoken by the baate (customary holders). Tahuda is oral literature or traditional speech from an oldest traditional figure or who is equated and addressed as olongia to residents or officials who have just been given a customary title. At that time, Tahuda was conveyed by a former king or former official to a new official. For example, if there was a new mayor or regent, the former mayor/regent gave Tahuda in the form of advice on what he had done and what the new official had to do.