Alya Lawindo Invites Generation Z to Preserve Minangkabau Religion and Culture

An international talk show with Alya Lawindo, a Minang student in American University, Washington DC, also a Minang activist in America, was held on Wednesday (11/01) in the First Campus of Universitas Muhammadiyah Sumatera Barat (UMSB).

The international talk show held by Student Executive Board (BEM) UM Sumatra Barat presented by Alya Lawindo. Born and raised in Uncle Sam’s country, Alya Lawindo did not lose her identity as a Minang girl.

Alya Lawindo mentioned that the younger generation should learn religion, customs and culture to prepare themselves, so that they don’t fail in life, especially when they are overseas. Although the Minang people now have diaspore to the world, the philosophy of Adat Basandi Syarak, Syarak Basandi Kitabullah has rooted to the Minang people to make Islam as the only foundation and guideline in life.

In his remarks, the Vice Chancellor II of UM Sumatra Barat, Dr. Mursal, M. Ag, mentioned that Alya Lawindo was more Minang than people born in Minang. “Welcome to Minang, Alya Lawindo. In my opinion, Alya Lawindo reflects the Minang culture more than people born in  Minang. She is fluent in Minang language, and also knows more about Minangkabau customs and culture, “he said.

It is inseparable from the upbringing given by Alya Lawindo’s parents. Since childhood, Alya has been taught about Minang religion and customs. “Every Friday, my father invites me to join him in Friday prayer. At home, mom and dad also always speak Minang language,” she said. Apart from that, at a young age, Alya also started learning Minang dances and songs. Her skills elevated, and until now she is fluent in Minang language, can sing Minang songs, recites rhymes, and plays randai (a folk theater tradition) like Minang people in general.

In America, Alya also teached the children the Koran. Besides teaching Koran, with Rumah Gadang, Alya appeared in various shows, promoting Minang culture to various parts of this foreign country. “I participated in various festivals including the Richmond Folklife Festival, the Smithsonian Folklife Festival, the Kennedy Center, and other states. In addition, we often participate in cultural events at the Indonesian Embassy in Washington DC,” she explained. During the Covid-19 pandemic, Alya was also invited to take part in a virtual seminar as a millennial Minang girls (padusi) held by the Diaspora Network.

The director of the Minangkabau Islamic Study Center, Isral Naska, MA said that nowaday, the young Minangkabau generation is experiencing an identity crisis. Many of them are not familiar with Sumbang 12 (Minang philosophy) in Minang. “We thank Alya Lawindo for fulfilling the invitation of UM Sumatra Barat. A Minangkabau woman activist who was born and raised in America but still upholds Minangkabau values,” he added. At the end of the event, Alya highlighted, “Friends who were born and raised in Minang are so lucky”.

Alya Lawindo Invites Generation Z to Preserve Minangkabau Religion and Culture

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