4 Different New Year Calendars Celebrated in Indonesia

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Laila Afifa

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  • TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - People didn’t always celebrate the New Year on January 1. The earliest recording of a New Year celebration is believed to be in Mesopotamia, circa 2000 B.C. Earthsky.org bottom-lined that there is no astronomical reason to celebrate New Year’s Day on January 1st in the Gregorian calendar.

    The following are four acknowledged calendars with different New Year’s Days which are commonly referred to by the diverse cultures and religions that live hand-in-hand in Indonesia.

    1. Gregorian Calendar, January 1

    This is the most widely used calendar that adheres to the international standard for the representation of dates and times. It is widely believed to be introduced in October 1582 and named after Pope Gregory XIII. The calendar spaces leap years to make the average year 365.2425 days long, approximating the 365.2422-day tropical year that is determined by the Earth's revolution around the sun.

    2. Islamic Hijri New Year

    Children join the torch parade in welcoming the Islamic New Year, Jakarta, September 18, 2018. TEMPO/M Taufan Rengganis

    New Year falls on the first month in the Islamic lunar calendar on the first day of Muharram. Special prayers are said and the appearance of the new moon is recorded in mosques as Indonesia is home to the largest Muslim population in the world. The Islamic New Year in 2019 is predicted to be celebrated on Friday, August 30.

    3. Chinese New Year

    Chinese New Year celebration in Indonesia. Tempo/David Priyasidharta

    Chinese New Year ranges from January 21 to February 20 according to Chinesenewyear.net. In 2019, it is predicted to occur on February 5th since it would be out all over the place once the lunar calendar is attempted to be calculated with the solar Gregorian calendar. The 2019 will mark the year of the pig according to the Chinese calendar.

    4. Balinese Saka Calendar

    A Mebubu ritual in Bali is held ahead of The Day of Silence, the start of Saka new year in Indonesia. AP

    The start of the Saka year in Indonesia is marked by the Balinese Hindu Nyepi festival – the day of silence – which is based on the lunar calendar. The Saka year comprises of twelve months with 30 days each. The Bali Hindu New Year is expected to arrive on March 7, 2019, according to publiholidays.co.id