September 23, 2010

Hualien Fengbin。 Makuta'ay Harvest Festival

每年七、八月豐年祭,是阿美族最熱鬧的時候。豐年祭是慶祝過去一年農作物豐收,並感謝神靈賜與恩惠的祭典活動,除了有「慶祝、感謝與祈求」的意義外,還有聯繫族人感情及教育後代子孫之意。各部落舉行祭典的內容與時間不盡相同,其中位於花蓮豐濱鄉的港口部落,是保存傳統祭典最完整及最具代表性的部落了。

The Harvest Festival in July and August each year is the busiest time in Amis tribe. Harvest Festival is an event to celebrate crop harvest and give thanks to the god over the past year. In addition to the meaning of the "Celebrate, Thank and Pray", it also enhances the bonding among villagers and educates the generations. The date and the formation of each festival in villages can be different. The Makuta’ay village in Fengbin Hualien maintains the most complete and traditional ceremony.

每年豐年祭期間,在外地工作與求學的族人,都會趕回來參加這一連五天的重要慶典,而今年為港口部落四年一度的「晉級儀式」,因此更加的盛大與熱鬧。

The villagers work and study outside the town return home to attend these 5 days event during the Harvest Festival. The “Promotion Ceremony “of Makuta’ay held every 4 years is the largest celebration this year.

年齡階級組織是阿美族的傳統制度,各部落的分級有些微的差異,港口部落分為老年組與青年組,其中青年組又可分成八個階級,每一個階級都有不同的權利與義務,通常階級越低的要擔負的勞務也就越重。不同的階級可從族人身上的衣飾來判別,階級越高的人身上的裝飾越少。青年組織裡最高階級的為「青年之父」,大約是四十歲的年紀,這個階級有相當的權威性,他們主導整個豐年祭活動,並控制會場秩序與掌控舞蹈的美觀與整齊度。

The age classification is the traditional tribal system in Amis. The classification is also slightly different in each tribe. The Makuta’ay is divided into the Elderly and Youth classifications. The youth group can also be divided into 8 levels with each level having different responsibilities. The lower level has more responsibilities than upper ones. The classification can be identified from its clothing. The higher class has smaller amount of decorations on the clothing. The “Father of the Youth” is the highest class in the youth group who has the highest authority and is about 40 year-old. They lead the entire harvest festival activities and maintain order and dance aesthetic uniformity.

青年組織裡第七個階段的人,在豐年祭裡是負責倒酒的工作。會場的中央擺著一打打的米酒,他們把米酒倒入水桶裡,然後再提著水桶一個個向族人敬酒與倒酒。

The youth of the seventh level in the Youth group are responsible to pour the wine during the ceremony. A couple dozen of rice wine bottles are set in the middle of the gathering place. They pour the rice wine into the buckets and then pour the buckets into each villager’s cup.

倒酒的工作可是不是件容易的任務!倒酒給階級較低的晚輩,晚輩是不能拒絕的,而對於階級比自己高的長輩,則必須恭敬的敬酒,但長輩可以拒喝,這時敬酒的人就要自己先乾為敬,隨後再奉上一杯,直到長輩覺得對方誠意足夠回禮為止。所以這個階級人,酒量若是不夠,還敬不到一輪大概就會醉倒在地上了吧!

This is not an easy job! If you pour the wine to a lower level villager, this person can’t refuse to drink. However, if you pour the wine to a higher level villager and this person can refuse to drink, then you have to drink the wine first until the higher level villager agree to drink. In order to do this job, one has to handle lots of drinks to not to get drunk.

母系社會的阿美族,豐年祭典卻是由男性來負責,那麼女性要做什麼呢?馬不停蹄的跳舞肯定會很口渴,女人們就是在一旁負責倒水給這些勇士們喝,但除了水外還會提供檳榔,但檳榔僅限於給高階級的人才有!

Amis is the Matriarchal tribe, but the men are responsible for the Harvest Festival. What women are doing during the festival? The continuous dancing definitely makes the warriors thirsty. Women give water and betel nuts to the warriors; however, only the higher class villagers can have the betel nuts!

祭典越接近尾聲,氣氛也越加熱鬧。原本面對會場、背對觀眾的舞者,開始轉身面向觀眾,吟唱的速度越來越快,他們的動作也越來越大,現場的氣氛越來越熱絡。

Closer to the end of the ceremony, more lively the atmosphere was. The warrior dancers turned facing the audience. Their singing and movement were getting faster. It was getting hot!

突然間,他們把圍觀的觀眾圍成數個小圈,然後奮力的狂舞,裡頭的觀眾又驚又喜。那急速、狂野,充滿力與美的肢體動作,撼動著所有圍觀的人,現場的吟唱、鈴聲與尖叫聲,把氣氛炒到最高點。

Suddenly, they surrounded the audience in a several circles. They danced so hard and made the audience excited. Their body movements made everyone scream and get excited, which led to the highest point of the festival.

接著,各階級的人一排排的向頭目致敬,然後再慢慢排成最初的一大圈,在結束前的時刻裡,用盡最後的力量,展現最具活力狂野的一面。

All classes lined up to show respect to their chief and back to a large circle. Before the end of the ceremony, they reached their wildest dynamic.

活動結束人潮散去後,接著是階級訓話,階級低的年輕人坐在地上,安靜認真的聽著青年之父精神訓話。訓話完,年輕人整理完會場後,再由青年之父各別帶開去吃飯喝酒聊天,結束這一天。在傳統文化逐漸式微的現在,阿美族的傳統階級制度,卻仍對港口部落族人有著強大的約束力,年輕人虛心的向長輩學習,接受長輩的教誨,傳統文化在這裡被尊敬、被奉為圭臬,相當的可貴。

Before concluding the event, the class lecture took place. The lower class youth sat on the ground and listened to the lecture from the “Father of the youth”. After the lecture, the youth cleaned the place and then were taken outside to eat and chat by the “Father of the Youth”. The traditional culture gradually declined at this time. Ami traditional class system still strongly bonds the villagers’ tribesmen. Youths learn from their elders and accept the lectures from them. The traditional culture receives the respect and is regarded as a valuable model here. Read More

8 comments:

fufu said...

wow exotic and colourful culture :) i didnt manage to visit hua lien when i was in taiwan 5yrs ago...really wanna visit taiwan again :) love Ami~

dennis said...

they must have some good drinkers

Zhu said...

So interesting! It reminded me of similar ceremonies in Canada with First Nation people.

Fall and harvest season is celebrated all over the world, funny isn't it? We are so different yet so similar across the oceans and the cultures...

kristen and micki said...

@fufu- The east coast of Taiwan is very beautiful. Lots of good sceneries can be seen there. Next time when you come, don't forget to spend time visiting the east coast!

@Dennis- Most of the aborigines are very good drinkers. However, the way they drank during the festival, it would be hard not to get drunk..

@Zhu-Spring is the beginning of the new life and fall is the harvest season. By following the nature, people are celebrating the harvest around the world~

lechua said...

wow this is fascinating.... so this display of tribal tradition is open to public? i see some ppl standing on the sidelines observin and taking pics

kristen and micki said...

@Lechua- Yes, the event is open to the public, but most of the participants were the Amis. Not too many visitors were there. It was truly a tribal festival!

shloke said...

SUPERB COVERAGE!!! This blog post looks like a mini National Geographic coverage :) NICE!

I LIKE everything - the headgear, costume, tradition, class system and many more.

Definitely an impressive and energetic harvest festival. I wish I was there with you! LOVE traditional and cultural stuff :)

kristen and micki said...

@Shloke— Thanks! I can tell you are a cultural person! If you were there, I bet you would be as excited as I was and danced with them too!

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