Categories: Iban Publications

(2001) Compiled by Robert Menua Saleh, Janang Ensiring and Walter Ted Wong.
Published by The Tun Jugah Foundation.
Paperback, 155 p.

Written in classical Iban. The book attempts to examine the various forms and texts of renung adat as they are sung in Sibu, Kapit and Betong Divisions of Sarawak, Malaysia. Renung Adat, a sacred chant, comprises of three categories in Sibu and Kapit Divisions, renung nama’ka tuah, renung ngalu petara, and renung sebayan. Renung Nama’ka Tuah is a song sung during numerous ritual festivals proper (Gawai Amat/Asal)and dream rituals (Gawai Mimpi) for welcoming possessions and riches brought into the family by deities through material manifestations of spiritual blessings. Renung Ngalu Antu is for inviting and welcoming deities and the spirits who will visit us during the riutal festivals. Renung Sebayan is sung during ritual festival for the deads (Ngelumbung). Its purpose is for inviting the spirits of the dead relatives to the feast whereby mourning regulations for the deceased’s family are lifted. The spirits of the deads are expected to give charms for the well-beings of the surviving relatives such as for longevity, prosperity and happiness. Renung Adat Melah Pinang is used in Betong Division in the celebration of a wedding ceremony. Scholars of Iban culture must have a copy of this book in their custody, for it will also give them insights into aspects of rites relating to renung adat.

Written by Robert Menua Saleh, Janang Ensiring and Walter Ted Wong