BATAK, one of the tribe at North Sumatra |
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By: Welfan Tondang (descendants of Raja Purba and Sisingamangaraja)

Batak refers to both an ethnic group and a language in Indonesia. The Batak people are an indigenous group who primarily inhabit the highlands of North Sumatra, an island in the western part of Indonesia. They have a rich cultural heritage and are known for their unique traditions, art, music, and architecture.

The Batak people are divided into several sub-groups, the most prominent of which are the Toba, Karo, Pakpak, Simalungun, Angkola and Mandailing. Each sub-group has its own distinct language and customs, although there are similarities that bind them together.

The Batak society is traditionally organized around clans, with each clan tracing it’s ancestry back to a common ancestor. The clans have their own social structures, and family ties play a significant role in Batak culture. Every Batak family have family name, or they called it “Marga”.

Marga is very important thing for a Batak’s. They need to know which families are there that has similiarity to their Marga. The unique tradition involving Marga, they never reveal their real name whenever they met each other for the first time. This tradition hold until now, to make Batak people bond each other, even they just met. Because if they found the same Marga, they became brothers. And also this tradition to avoid marriage with the same Marga.

Religion plays a significant role in the lives of the Batak people. Historically, they practiced an animistic belief system known as “Malim,” which focused on ancestral worship and the veneration of natural spirits. However, in modern times, Christianity, particularly Protestantism, has become the predominant religion among the Batak, although some still adhere to traditional beliefs.

In summary, the Batak people of Indonesia are an indigenous group with a rich cultural heritage. They are known for their unique customs, traditional houses, flavourful cuisine, vibrant music and dances, and strong family ties.

So, come and visit to lake Toba where you can see the unique of the Batak’s people with #andasumatra

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